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, December 27, 2015

Anno Domini 2016

(Article for publication week of 12-31- AD 2015)

"Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father" (Philippians 2:9-11).
This week we will turn the calendar to mark the beginning of a new year. As we start the year of 2016 it will be good to remember why we number the year as we do. This will be the two thousand and sixteenth year of the reign of King Jesus. The civilised world, also known as "Christendom" reckons the history of the world from the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. "Christendom" recognises that the Lord Jesus Christ is the true King of the universe. The time before His birth is called "B.C.", i.e, "Before Christ." "A.D." is the abbreviation for "Anno Domini," Latin for "year of our Lord." To be more accurate this is most likely the two thousandth and twenty first year of the Reign of our Lord according to Bishop Ussher's reckoning. Our calendar is probably off by five years. Bishop Ussher's "Annals of the World," first published in 1658 and recently reprinted has been proven to be amazingly accurate. In 1978 astrogeophysicist, Dr. John Eddy, although a proponent of unbiblical  and anti- God evolution made this amazing statement, "However, given some new and unexpected results to the contrary [to the myth of an old universe; columnist's note], and some time for frantic recalculation and theoretical readjustment, I suspect that we could all live with Bishop Ussher's value for the age of the earth and sun [6,020 years, columnist's note]. I don't think we have much in the way of observational evidence in astronomy to conflict with that."! So don't throw away your old copies of the Bible with Bishop Ussher's dates and don't be so quick to accept the lies of unbelieving "scientists" and revisionist "historians" and liberal "theologians."
Not surprisingly, the government controlled education system and its propaganda wing a.k.a the "news media" are doing their best to try to get us to quit using "A.D." and "B.C." to record the history of the world and reckon time. They want us to start using "C.E." (common era) and "B.C.E" (before common era). They hate Christ and everything that reminds them that He is on the Throne and that they will have to face Him in Judgment when they die. Ironically they cannot get away from the historical fact of the advent of Christ into the world because when you say "common era" you still have to acknowledge that the "common era" is dated from the birth of Christ!
So as we enter into this new year let us remember Who our true King is. The Eternal Son of God undertook a great humiliation and became a Man. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Ghost in the virgin Mary's womb. He lived a life of perfect obedience to the law of God. His obedience is accounted to the record of His people. He died on a cross to put away His people's sins. He went further in His humiliation and was laid in the cold dark grave. But the third day He came forth eternally triumphant over all His foes, and His people's foes. After forty days He ascended back to His rightful throne and the Eternal Father put His crown back on His lovely head. God the Father hath highly exalted Him. People, behold your King! You are now commanded to confess Him and bow to Him as your Lord. Our text says that every tongue "should" confess" and every knee "should" bow. But Romans 14:11 says the Day is coming when every tongue "shall" confess the Lordship of Christ and every knee "shall" bow to Him. You will either bow now in salvation, or you will bow later in damnation! You had better get right with your King.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Christ on a Throne, Not in a Manger

(Article for publication week of 12-24- AD 2015)

"The LORD said unto my Lord, 'sit thou at my right hand until I make thine enemies thy footstool' " (Psalm 110:1).
We are in that season when "Christendom"  observes the Birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. There is no Biblical or historical evidence that our Lord was born on the 25th of December, nor is there any Biblical warrant (much less a command) to have a "holy day" to observe the birth of Christ. The Romish organisation headed by the anti-Christ established the 25th of December as a special "mass" to observe the birth of Christ. They picked the 25th of December because the heathens (including our benighted European ancestors) observed this day as the birth of the sun god. Because of its pagan roots, and the fact that it is called a "mass" (the pope teaches that Christ is "offered" in the mass and that the incantations of the "priests" change the bread and wine into the literal body and blood of Christ), many Christians (including your poor columnist) do not believe we should celebrate this as a "holy day" in the church. Our sincere prayer is that people would celebrate the only true holy day that God has commanded, that is the weekly Sabbath which has been the first day of the week since our Lord's resurrection John 20:19; Acts 20:7). It is most telling of the spiritual condition of our county that people will make more of the "Christ-mass" than the Day that Christ arose from the dead, commanded in the Law (Exodus 20:8-11), and established by God in the creation ordinance (Genesis 2:2-3).
Having said all that, we hasten to add that in the over-ruling Providence of God, many minds will be upon Christ this week. Some will attend Divine Service who have not attended in awhile. Many pastors will preach on the Incarnation this week, and that is always a good thing. Many will attend programs where hymns of praise to Christ will be sung. Handel's Messiah will be performed in many places, and many will attend who never hear the gospel any other time of the year. Many stores (at least in the Bible Belt) still have "Christmas carols" for background music during this season. Many will send and receive "Christmas cards" that will have scriptures on them and other references to the Incarnation and Birth of Christ. The Holy Spirit in His Divine Sovereignty may use such as this to open some elect sinner's heart to believe in Christ to the saving of his or her soul. Others will be left further without excuse and treasure unto themselves greater damnation.
So, my dear kindred, neighbours and friends, I challenge you with my text. I declare unto you that Christ is no longer a babe in a manger, He is a King on His throne! Our Lord quoted our text to the Jews in Matthew 22:44 answering His Own question to one of them, "what think ye of Christ?" That is the question for each of you who have considered the birth of Christ this week- "what think ye of Christ?" Our Lord quoted Psalm 110:1 to declare that He is the Eternal Son of God! "The LORD said unto my Lord, sit thou at my right hand until I make thine enemies thy footstool"! This verse is the covenantal language of the Eternal Father with the Eternal Son. The first "LORD" in the text is in all capitals because it is "Jehovah" , or "Yahweh." The second "Lord" is only with the "L" capitalised, because it is the Hebrew "Adonai." Both Jehovah and Adonai properly mean God. So our text is God the Father speaking to God the Son. And listen what the Father says. He says "sit thou at my right hand until all your enemies are crushed under your holy feet." Christ is not in a manger, He is on a throne at the right hand of the Father. He has finished the work of redemption. He undertook a great humiliation and became a Man (the God-Man) to suffer and die as a substitute for His people. Now He is ruling and reigning from His rightful throne. He is your rightful Monarch to Whom you must submit. It is an awful thing to be an enemy of the One Who was a Babe in Bethlehem but Who is now on the throne of the universe.
None can deny (rationally) that there was a Man named Jesus of Nazereth who lived in Palestine about 2,000 years ago. All the historical data prove the Biblical record (although Bible believers don't need it) that Christ was born and lived and died and that God the Father raised Him from the dead the third day. The civilised world dates its calendar from His Birth. The question for you my friend is whether you will bow to Him now and worship Him, or will you be crushed under the feet of His terrible judgment? I urge you to lay down your arms of rebellion and bow to your rightful Monarch, the Lord Jesus Christ, or you will be his eternal footstool.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Have You Entered the Gate of Conversion?

(Article for publication week of 12-17- AD 2015)
"Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able" (Luke 13:24).
The Reader is invited to compare our text with Matthew 7:13-14. For the past couple of weeks we have been focusing on the main theme of these weekly articles-- the narrow way that leads to heaven, which is only entered by the strait gate. Our Lord in parabolic language illustrates for us true conversion (the strait gate), and true perseverance (the narrow way). In order to get to heaven and immortal glory you must walk in the narrow way for it is the only way to heaven. And there is but one way to get into the narrow way and that is by the strait gate of conversion. Most of you are complete strangers to the truth of my text, for you have never been converted.
Note well that our Lord says that conversion is a difficult thing. The archaic word used in our text, "strait," literally means "difficult." Contrary to popular opinion it is not an easy thing for a sinner to get saved. In your day and mine we have been told that if we will just repeat a prayer after the preacher or "soul winner" we will be saved. We hear reports of young people walking the aisle chewing gum and laughing as they "respond" to the appeal of an evangelist in a "youth revival." Such modern day false evangelism is filling the professed church with lost people. Multitudes are headed for hell so fast they are kicking dust in the devil's face because they have been told that it is easy to be saved. Friend if you had an easy time getting saved, you are not saved, you are only deceived. Salvation, conversion, is simple but it is not easy. I wish you would listen to the words of Christ. He said (not this little country preacher) that it is a difficult gate you must get through if you will be saved. Salvation is simply repenting of your sins and believing in the Lord Jesus Christ and a little child can do that if he is regenerated by the Holy Spirit. Conversion, though simple, is so difficult that no one would ever be saved apart from the sovereign grace of God. By nature you love yourself and your sins and it is foreign to your nature to repent. In fact you will never repent unless the Lord Himself grant you repentance (Acts 11:18). Faith in Christ is simple, yet no one will ever believe in Christ to the saving of his soul until the Lord gives him faith (Ephesians 2:8) for saving faith is a gift of God. You cannot come to Christ by your "free" will. Christ has plainly declared in John 6:44, "no man cometh unto me except the Father who sent Me draw him." It is not only difficult to be saved, it is impossible to be saved without the drawing work of God.
Our Lord says something else here about true conversion that is completely foreign to this generation of Mississippians. He commands us to "strive" to enter in the gate of salvation. The word "strive" in our English translation is from the Greek work "agonizomai" from which we get our English word "agony." Our Lord is telling us that if we will be saved we must agonize. Dear reader do you know anything of which I speak? Have you ever been in agony of soul, striving to be saved? Or did you just say a little prayer and walk the aisle and join the church? When it pleases God to call an elect sinner from the darkness of this world into the marvelous light of His Son, He brings that poor sinner into distress of soul. I tell you that real conversion is a painful experience. To be under Holy Spirit conviction is an agonizing experience. To see yourself as spiritually bankrupt without a farthing to pay is a distressing thing. To have you eyes opened to the truth that God is thrice holy and I am so unholy and unclean that I despair of ever being saved is a most disturbing experience. To try to pray and feel like I cannot pray because my heart is so cold and hard and wicked, why this is agony of soul! To want to repent, and not be able to repent, this is soul agony. Dear reader do you know anything of which I write? Have you ever agonized in your soul because of your lost and ruined state? Have you ever lost sleep at night fearing that you were too sinful for a holy and just God to save you?
Now this is a little of what our Lord speaks when he says that true conversion is difficult and painful. But I close with a word of comfort and cheer for the chief of sinners. Christ came to save sinners! If you are in agony of soul because you have felt your lost and ruined state then Christ says to you, "come unto me"! Though you your sins are as scarlet, ye shall be as white as snow by the blood of the Lamb. In the words of John Newton, "I know two things, I am a great sinner, and Christ is a great Saviour. If grace has taught your heart to fear, grace shall also relieve your fears. May the Lord grant you peace in believing in the Lord Jesus Christ this very day is my prayer for each of my readers.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Have You Entered the Narrow Way?

(Article for publication week of December 10, AD 2015)

"Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way that leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it" (Matthew 7:13-14).
Dear reader, are you in the narrow way that leads to life, or are you in the broad way that leads to destruction? And if you claim to be in the narrow way, I ask you, "how did you get in?" Did you enter in by the strait (difficult) gate of conversion? I ask you not if you have accepted Jesus, but I ask you, " are you in the narrow way, and did you get in by the strait gate?"
Now, our text makes it plain that not everyone is saved. Regardless of men's vain imaginings, there are but few (comparatively speaking) that are saved. There are few that have been converted and that are in the way of holiness and perseverance that leads to heaven and immortal glory, but there are many that are in the broad way that leads to hell. Now let's bring it home. There are few here in Simpson County that are saved. The vast majority of you are unsaved. Now, those of you who are living immoral lives, we know are unsaved (I Corinthians 6: 9&10). And those of you who are in unbelief, we know you are unsaved (Mark 16:16). Those of you who will not publicly profess the Lord Jesus Christ, we know that you also are unsaved (Matthew 10: 32&33). But there are multitudes of you who have a profession who do not possess Christ and you are also unsaved. Some of you are going to live and die in religion, and still end up in hell. You will find yourself among those of whom our Lord speaks in Matthew 7:21-23. I fear that many of you preachers are in this group. You see the way that leads to hell is broad enough to include the openly profane, the spiritually indifferent, and the lost church member. And the devil doesn't care how he brings you down to hell with him as long as he keeps you away from Christ. Sin is keeping some of you from Christ, and self righteousness is keeping others from Christ, but either way if you are not in Christ, you will be lost forever. Dear reader, I ask you to quit living in a make believe world and wake up to the reality that you are either in the narrow way of salvation, or you are in the broad way of eternal damnation.
Now there are many of you who imagine yourself to be in the narrow way, so now I want to probe the recesses of your soul and ask you plainly, "did you enter in by the strait gate?" Be sure my friend if you have not entered in the strait gate you are not in the narrow way. So what is this "strait" gate. Why, it is the gate of conversion. There must be an entering in to salvation by the one door that only the Triune God can open. That door is Christ Himself as the Great Shepherd sweetly says in John 10:9. True conversion is repenting of your sins and receiving Christ as your Lord and Saviour. It is a turning from your idols to serve the true and living God (I Thessalonians 1:9). It is a surrender of yourself to the Lord Jesus Christ. In order to be converted you have to throw down your shotgun that you have pointed at God. Every unconverted sinner, spiritually has his shotgun pointed  at God and refuses to be ruled by Him choosing rather to be a law unto himself and have his own way. Every unconverted sinner is singing the theme of song of hell in his mind, "I did it my way"! That is the reason I know most of you are in reality unsaved because you do not care what God has said in His word, you are determined to do what you want to do instead of what God commands you to do.
I can hear some of you protesting, "I thought salvation was simple"! You are right. Salvation is simply repenting of your sins and believing in Christ and that is so simple a little child can be saved. Salvation is so simple an illiterate person can be saved. Salvation is so simple a retarded person can be saved. But listen friends and neighbours and kindred, simplicity and ease are not the same. Repentance and faith are simple but they are against your fallen nature. You are dead in trespasses and sin (Ephesians 2:1) and you cannot come to Christ unless God draws you (John 6:44), and you will not come to Christ and be saved because you are natural born rebel (John 5:40). So Christ says the gate that opens to salvation is entered with difficulty, and such difficulty that you will never enter in until the Holy Spirit regenerates you and draws you in.
Dear reader, have you entered in by the strait gate? Some of you have "settled down", but that is not conversion. Some of you have become quite respectable. Some of you have been religious all your life, but you have never entered in at the strait gate. Some of you have embraced Calvinism, but you have not entered in at the strait gate and so when you get to hell you will be as sound as a silver dollar. II Corinthians 13:5 commands us to examine ourselves whether we be in the faith. I beseech you and urge you today to examine yourself if you are really in the narrow way, and if you entered the narrow way by the difficult gate of conversion.