About the Author

Thomas Ray Floyd was born in 1953 in Simpson County, Mississippi, the son of Roy Thomas Floyd and Lina Sue Shows Floyd. Thomas Ray's mother was a member of a Primitive Baptist church, and he cut his teeth on the doctrines of distinguishing grace.

When he was a small boy, his father was converted to Christ and became a member of a Missionary Baptist Church. Thomas Ray joined the church of his father when he was 13 years old, and thought of himself as a Christian. The doctrines of grace that he had heard as a child continued to be precious to him and when he became an adult, he joined a Primitive Baptist Church. When he was 27, Thomas Ray made his first effort to preach the gospel in public and was ordained to the full functions of the ministry in 1985. In 1986 he was convinced under the preaching of Rolfe Barnard (by tapes from Mt. Olive Tape Library), the written sermons of Spurgeon, and the ministry of Elder Zack Guess that he had been a false professor and cried out in agony of soul to the Lord Jesus Christ to have mercy and truly save him. And He did! Floyd then began to preach the gospel as he had been taught of the Lord.

Floyd has pastored churches in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Tennessee and until recently was pastor of a church plant known as "Particular Baptist Fellowship." He and his wife Brenda presently attend Zion Baptist Church at Polkville, Mississippi, pastored by Elder Glen Hopkins. The pulpit ministry of Zion Baptist Church can be heard at Sermonaudio.com.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Feeding on Christ

(Article for publication week of 7-3- AD 2014)
"I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world" (John 6:51).
For several weeks we have been writing to you concerning the principle acts of faith. The reason we are doing this series is to show from the scriptures what true saving faith is, for there is a faith which is not saving (James 2:19, Acts 8:13-23). Dear reader, is your professed faith true saving faith? I will ask each of you to examine yourselves and ask yourselves, "is my faith any different from the faith of devils and unregenerate men?"
We have shown so far three principle acts of faith- receiving Christ (John 1:12) ,coming to Christ (John 6:35), and resting in Christ (Matthew 11:28). These are principle acts of faith, if not exactly synonymous with faith. Next to be considered is feeding on Christ. In our text Christ describes Himself as "the bread of life." Now, we know and understand that Christ was not saying that He is literally a piece of bread. Christ is not literally a "door" as he described Himself in John 10:9. These and other such expressions are illustrative of the wonders of Christ's Person and Work. When Christ describes Himself as the bread of life, He is telling us that He is food for the soul. As natural bread is the "staff" of natural life (that is real bread made from old timey wheat that is nor hybrid or genetically altered), so Christ is the staff of spiritual life to His people. Christ likens Himself to bread because He nourishes and sustains the souls of His people.
We also know and understand that Christ was not saying that we are to literally eat Him, as the papists vainly imagine and teach by the superstitious lie of transubstantiation. When Christ says that believers are to eat Him as the bread of life, He is simply saying that we are to spiritually ingest Him for spiritual life ( see again John 6:35 and compare).
It is Christ the living bread that sustains the souls of believers. Those who feed upon Him shall live forever. They can never be lost nor fall finally away and lose their salvation, for they live by their faith in Christ. "The just shall live by faith." Without the living bread, we would shrivel and die and perish forever.  The Lord Jesus Christ satisfies our souls, as bread satisfies the hungry body.
Now, Christ says, "if any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever." Poor sinner, that is an invitation wide enough to include you if you are spiritually hungry. Sadly, most people prefer to stay in the hog pen like the Prodigal son and live off swine's food. But in the Father's house there is plenty of bread and more than plenty. Why don't you quit eating the husks this world offers and believe on Christ by feeding upon Him as living bread?

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Believers Always Coming to Christ

(Article for publication week of  6-26- AD 2014)
"To Whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious," (I Peter 2:4).
We have been considering for several weeks a principle act of faith, coming to Christ. Coming to Christ, and believing on Christ are one and the same thing (see John 6:35 e.g.). Our text this week tells us that the true believer in Christ is always coming to Christ. Coming to Christ is not something a person does once in his life to get saved, but a true believer perseveres in faith and is continually coming to Christ. This is one of the differences in a true Christian and a false professor- the Christian never quits coming to Christ.
First of all, a believer is continually coming to Christ, for he is in continual need of His grace. A true believer never gets to the point that he thinks he can make it on his own. He knows he is in continual need of the grace that is in Christ. If Christ left us to ourselves for one second we would fall as surely as Judas Iscariot.  Saints are kept from final falling by the rock of our salvation and we continually are coming to Him to keep us safe from our sorry selves, the world and the devil.
Secondly, believers are always coming to Christ, because they know there will never be any access to God except through the One and Only Mediator between God and men, the God-Man, the Lord Jesus Christ. We have heard and believed the words of the Lovely Redeemer, the Lord Jesus Christ, saying, "no man cometh unto the Father but by Me." So we keep coming to Christ by Whose merits we have access to God. The believer cannot live without praying, and he knows that his prayers will only be received by God through the intercession of Christ.
Thirdly, the believer keeps on coming to Christ because he has no righteousness apart from the imputed righteousness of Christ. A truly regenerate soul is made to hunger and thirst after righteousness (Matthew 5:6). He knows that he must be as righteous as God Himself or he will be damned forever, and he believes the scriptures that God the Father has made God the Son to be sin for us that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him (II Corinthians 5:21).
Fourthly, the believer is always coming to Christ for he is in continual need of the cleansing power of His blood. The true believer is painfully aware of his many foul backslidings and he knows that the fountain filled with blood drawn from Immanuel's veins is the only place he can find cleansing.
Finally, the true believer will keep coming to Christ though no one else does. This Precious Stone may be disallowed by the whole world, but we will keep coming to Him for He is indeed precious to us. Dear reader, have I described you?

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Come to Christ and Rest

(Article for publication week of 6-19- AD 2014)
"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest" (Matthew 11: 28).
Here is a sweet invitation from the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. He invites all that are labouring and burdened down to come to Him and rest. I will first of all remind you that coming to Christ is a principle act of faith, if not exactly synonymous with faith (John 6:35). Coming to Christ in the sense of my text is to come to Him by faith. It is a spiritual act, not a physical act. I remind you that coming to Christ is exactly that- coming to Christ. It is not coming to a preacher, or to a church, or to a denomination. It is not coming to a doctrinal system. We have known some who came to the doctrines of grace who gave no evidence of coming to Christ. So I emphasize that coming to Christ is the same as believing in Christ, and it is believing in Him and His Person and Work.
Secondly, I emphasize that coming to Christ is coming to the Christ of the Bible, not a Christ of your imagination. There are multitudes who "believe" in a "christ" of their own imagination. They "believe" in a "christ" who is just a good example, or a good teacher. To be sure, the Lord Jesus Christ was the Greatest Teacher, and He set the example for His people in every command that He gave us. To be sure, if you are really saved, you will be following Christ as your teacher and as your Great Example. But the Lord Jesus Christ is more than all this; He is God Incarnate who lived and died and was buried and rose from the dead and is presently seated at the right hand of God interceding for all who come to Him by faith. This is the Christ to Whom labouring and burdened souls are invited to come.
Thirdly, note well the extent of the invitation. The invitation is extended to all who are labouring in distress of soul and burdened down with a sense of their sin. There are but a few who are interested in this invitation. It is only those who are made sensible of their sins by the convicting work of the Holy Spirit who are interested in the Saviour's sweet invitation.  John Bunyan gave us a wonderful description of the work of grace in an elect sinner's soul in his wonderful allegory, "Pilgrim's Progress." If you have never read it I urge you to do so. In the allegory, Christian begins to read the scriptures and sees he is a guilty sinner and so he has a burden on his back. He begins to seek relief and the only man who could help him was Evangelist, who represents a faithful preacher. Following Evangelist's  directions, Christian enters the narrow way by the wicket gate and at the cross his burden fell off. Dear reader, do you know anything of Holy Ghost conviction? Do you know anything of being burdened down with guilt? Do you know of labouring under the demands of God's strict law? Well, the Dear Saviour invites you to come to Him and rest.
This my dear friends is salvation-to come to Christ and rest your case in Him. You will never find rest for your poor soul anywhere except in Christ. Christ promises He will give rest to burdened souls, and He is as good as His word. Come to Him just as you are- a poor lost, bankrupt sinner. You will find a resting place there.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Come to Christ and Welcome

(Article for publication week of 6-12- AD 2014)

"Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out" (John 6:37b). Oh! What a wonderful word from the dear Saviour of sinners! Awakened sinner, I bring you good news from Christ's own gracious lips; He will not cast out any who come to Him for salvation.
The Saviour of sinners welcomes you to come to Him this very moment. He will not cast you out though your sins are as black as hell. There are none too sinful for the Lord Jesus Christ to save. It is written of the Son of man that He "receiveth sinners"! And I am so glad that I can read that in the word of God. I was as vile as a sinner could be, but the Lord Jesus Christ received me when I came to Him by faith. And I know that if He did not cast me out, He will not cast you out either, if you come to Him as a sinner to be saved. But one of my readers may be thinking, "oh! but Brother Floyd, you don't know how wicked I have been! I cannot believe that the dear Saviour would receive me. I fear that if I come to Him He would cast me out, and I feel that is just what I deserve." Poor sinner, you have Christ's Own words, "I will in no wise cast out." If you will read the scriptures you will find that Christ received prostitutes, tax collectors, blasphemers, thieves, murderers, persecutors, idolaters and the vilest of the vile who repented of their sins and threw themselves on His mercy. Though you feel yourself to be the very worst of sinners, your case is no worse that many others that Christ has saved. Why, I even read where Christ has saved filthy sodomites (I Corinthians 6:9-11). Every filthy sinner that has come to the cleansing fountain has been washed as white as snow. Christ has made harlots into virtuous women, crooks into honest men, persecutors into preachers, and filthy sodomites into normal people. That is the saving power of Him Who says, "him that cometh to me, I will in no wise cast out." Christ welcomes you poor sinner to  come to Him and be saved from the penalty, power, pollution, and (ultimately) the presence of sin. Do you desire to be saved from your filthy sins and be released from its bondage? Then come to Christ and be saved today.
But perhaps some are thinking, "oh! how I wish to come to Christ, but I  feel my utter inability! I have tried everything, but I  am no better." Poor sinner, though you have no power in yourself, the power is in the Saviour Who bids you come! The first half of my text is a promise that all that the Father gave to the Son shall come to Him. John 6:37 provides two crutches for helpless sinners to hobble to Christ upon. Cry out to the Great Physician right now and beg Him to draw you by His power to Himself.
And then there may be someone else thinking, "I know I cannot come to Christ, for I have rejected Him so many times before. I was raised by Godly parents who pointed me to Christ, but I refused and went my own way. I had a faithful pastor who pleaded with me every Lord's day to repent and come to Christ and be saved, but I would not." Poor sinner, Christ has saved more than a few in just such circumstances. I believe that if you are pained in your soul about such things, it may be the Holy Spirit is dealing with you this very moment.
Let no sinner despair of being saved as long as the Saviour of sinners says "him that cometh to me, I will in no wise cast out." Comet to Christ, and welcome. Come to Christ and be saved.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

The Bondage of Free Will

(Article for publication week of 6-5- AD 2014)

"And ye will not come to me that ye might have life" (John 5:40).

In John 6:44 our Lord declared that no man can come to Him without the drawing power of the Holy Spirit. Man is unable to come to Christ by his so-called " free" will. In our text this week, our Lord says that men will not come to Him. Man's plight is desperate, he will not come to Christ, and he cannot come to Christ; and if he does not come to Christ he will perish eternally.

Now, I want you to be sure you understand that God is not going to send you to hell for your inability. God is going to send you to hell for your rebellion, for that is exactly what refusing to believe in Christ is- it is utter rebellion. The reason you will not come to Christ is that you are a rebel intent on having your own way. When you come to the Judgment Seat of Christ you will not be able to plead your inability as a reason for not believing on Christ as Lord and Saviour. That would be like a thief coming before the judge and pleading as a reason he should not be convicted of a crime that he could not help stealing. The judge would likely say that he should receive the full penalty of the law in such a case. And so dear reader, if you refuse to heed the gospel and come to Christ for salvation you are doubly indicted by the High King of Glory: first for breaking God's law, and secondly for refusing to accept God's appointed remedy for sinners- His Son.

In reality man's will is not free, but enslaved. Your will is enslaved to your pride, your self- love, your carnality, your fascination with the world, the opinions of your fellows, the fashions of the day and a thousand other things. Pelagians and Arminians will scream, "but I believe whosoever will may come"! So do I. But what good is that when the world is full of "whosoever won'ts". That is exactly what our text here in John 5:40 says, "whosoever won't"! "Ye will not come to me that ye might have life."

So how can a rebellious sinner ever come to Christ? It is only by the sovereign grace of God! Those that God purposes to save He changes their will so that they gladly and willingly come to Christ. So we read in Psalm 110:3," Thy people shall be willing in the day of Thy power." When the Holy Spirit calls a sinner out of darkness into the marvelous light of the Lord Jesus Christ, that sinner then comes most freely to Christ. I wonder if that has ever happened to you? Has your stubborn, rebellious nature been conquered by God's exceptional grace? Have you come by faith to Christ for life? Our text says that is the only way you may have life. While our Lord plainly shows the enmity of our natural, fallen will, He also implies that if we are willing to come to Him, we will have life and be saved. I pray the Lord will make you willing in the day of His power and that you will come to Christ without delay.