Wherever the grace of God is, it constrains its partaker to desire to live to His honour and glory. But he soon finds the difficulty of so doing. Such is the weakness of the flesh, the power of sin, the subtlety of Satan, the strength of temptation, and the snares spread on every side for our feet, that we can neither do what we would, or be what we would. Before we are well aware, we get entangled with some idol, or drawn aside into some indulgence of the flesh, which brings darkness into the mind, and may cut us out some bitter work for the rest of our days.
But we thus learn not only the weakness of the flesh, but where and in whom all our strength lies. And as the grace of the Lord Jesus, in its suitability, in its sufficiency and its superaboundings, becomes manifested in and by the weakness of the flesh, a sense of His wondrous love and care in so bearing with us, in so pitying our case, and manifesting mercy where we might justly expect wrath, constrains us with a holy obligation to walk in His fear and to live to His praise.
“Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein. Also I set watchmen over you, saying, Hearken to the sound of the trumpet. But they said, we will not hearken.” Jeremiah 6:16-17.
Jeremiah the prophet, by the Holy Ghost, exhorted the professing people of God in his day, who hoped to arrive in Heaven at the end of their earthly lives, to consider the way in which they were travelling. “Stand ye in the ways, and see”; look to the signpost at the crossroads. Find out if you really are in the good way to Heaven, lest you be found at the end in Hell!
When we travel on a journey, we consider it sensible to look for signposts or ask directions. The allegory here shows that our spiritual journey is much the same as an earthly physical one; except that a mistake here is eternally fatal – unless repentance is sought.
Happily, all the directions we need are to be found in the pages of the Bible, the Book of God, which will never lead us astray as we ask the Great Interpreter of it, the Holy Spirit of truth, to lead and guide us.
Question: What’s your response to the two different commandments given to Moses to get water from the rock? (Ex 17:5-6 and Num 20:8). In the first instance, Moses was told to take the rod and the elders and strike the rock. In the second, Moses was told to take the rod and Aaron and speak to the rock. Were these two incidences analogous to Christ’s sacrifice and resurrection? Was Moses punished because either he did not follow God’s command exactly or he messed up the analogy or both? Thanks! I have not read all the articles on your website, but the ones I have read, I have enjoyed and appreciated.
A brief report of the CRE Exhibition.
The position we had in 2014 was stand 111 the same as last year. As will be seen in the photographs of this years stand at CRE Sandown, the theme this time was the contrast between the Biblical old paths of truth and righteousness as expressed generally by the ‘Old Evangelicalism’ – and the false paths of the ‘New evangelicalism’ which includes all the fallacies of the ‘Emerging Church‘. See article. The stand was manned by Committee members who included Marcus Brockes, David Lawson and myself.
Two banners were displayed depicting the ‘good way’ and the false way with a signpost between them representative of Jeremiah 6: 16; “stand ye in the ways and see…”.
Initially we were told on arrival by the organisers to remove some of our literature and the two banners, on the grounds that some may have found them offensive. Eventually after agreeing to slight modifications (removing references to ‘Messy Church’- whose organisers were opposite!) we were allowed to continue with our display.
And what a good and blessed four days we had, with many folk saying how encouraged they had been by our stand. Fruitful conversations were had with some who had never considered these things above, particularly the differences between the Received Text underlying the King James Bible and the novel Greek text of the modern versions and the corrupted manuscripts as their sandy foundation. Yes, the whole ‘show’ is very reminiscent of Pilgrim’s Vanity Fair with ‘Christian’ comedians, and pop music style entertainments in ‘worship’ services; yet this is we believe, a proper place in which to show the weak, the wavering and the false, the true gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. Our new colour brochure was handed out – approximately 700 copies – with lots of other sound literature.
Much has been written about Hurricane Sandy since it hit the USA on Monday 29th October. Online conversations ranged from ‘God bless’ (those who were in the hurricane’s path) to ‘God does not exist’; and one reporter noted that science, humour and venom were all used to question religion – or at least the idea of blaming the storm on God . Yet such a major event is bound to bring a fundamental question back to mind: ‘Why has such an awful thing happened?’
For some the answer will be that there is no answer, no reason behind it. Others will say that it was just another natural event that will take its place in history – it had nothing to do with God. Still others will put it down to climate change and call for urgent action to combat the effects of modern life on the planet. Yet there are many who will not be content with answers such as these. For people who believe in God the question becomes: ‘What was God doing in all of this?’
(Former Director of Public Health for Croydon Health Authority)
We live in a time when the Biblical understanding of marriage has been greatly undermined in both the Church and society. The promotion of same-sex marriage, which is attempting to re-define the meaning of marriage, is surely a symptom of our times. The Christian marriage education movement, which teaches psychological skills and techniques to help couples achieve marital happiness, has been eagerly embraced by many churches. As a consequence, many Christians are no longer sure what the Bible teaches about marriage. In my address, I aim to do two things. First to identify the influences and ideas that are undermining marriage in the eyes of society, and second, to show that the teaching of Scripture contains all that is needed for a blessed and fruitful marriage.
The ‘Marriage’ Word
We need to recognise that the word ‘marriage’ is now deeply contentious, for there is no longer a consensus on the meaning of the word. For over a thousand years the Biblical definition of marriage as a union between one man and one woman, who become husband and wife, has been widely accepted, but society has now changed the way it thinks about marriage. In the 1990s, the Oxford Dictionary defined marriage as ‘the legal union of a man and a woman in order to live together and often to have children’, omitting reference to husband and wife. This change has come about because of an intense ideological assault on the Biblical view of marriage, and because of reluctance on the part of many churches to teach about marriage. The void created by this reluctance has been eagerly filled by the so-called Christian marriage education movement.
Christmas is a season which almost all Christians observe in one way or another. Some keep it as a religious season. Some keep it as a holiday. But all over the world, wherever there are Christians, in one way or another Christmas is kept.
Perhaps there is no country in which Christmas is so much observed as it is in England. Christmas holidays, Christmas parties, Christmas family-gatherings, Christmas services in churches, Christmas hymns and carols, Christmas holly and mistletoe,—who has not heard of these things? They are as familiar to English people as anything in their lives. They are among the first things we remember when we were children. Our grandfathers and grandmothers were used to them long before we were born. They have been going on in England for many hundred years. They seem likely to go on as long as the world stands.
A well-attended Annual Meeting was held at Slip End Village Hall, near Luton, on 4th October.
David Crowter, the Chairman, welcomed those present and then Mr. A. Chapman read the Scriptures from Exodus, chapter 32 and Marcus Brockes, Treasurer, followed in prayer.
The meeting then heard from Mr. Ian Henderson, Vice-Chairman, who told the meeting that CW had been founded by Bible-believing Protestants who were committed to the same beliefs and ideals as ‘the great Protestant Reformers’. He spoke with sadness of how many formerly Protestant Churches and whole denominations had ‘turned their backs on the great truths of the Scriptural Gospel message’. In some towns, he said, there were simply no Protestant, Reformed Churches left to proclaim the Gospel message. In some places, CW had been able to help and put believers in touch with one another, leading to small groups of believers meeting in each other’s houses – because there was no suitable Church in their areas.
An Open Air Witness was held on a lovely warm sunny day in Portsmouth City Centre, when I teamed up with Jim, Malcolm and Rick who came from the local Grace Baptist Church. As soon as I put up the Christian Watch table, two young men began to speak to Rick about a tract on evolution. Rick spoke with them for quite a while about their need of Jesus, but they were not so pleased when Jim began preaching and telling people that they needed to repent.
Jim and Malcolm took it in turns to preach, and there were a lot of people sitting nearby listening. Malcolm was able to talk to a man selling balloons, dressed in bright colours, who was of French origin.
2 Corinthians 10:4,5 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
The Woolwich terrorist attack was of such a nature that words are insufficient to describe the monstrous barbaric murder. Lee Rigby, 25 and from Middleton, Greater Manchester who had been in the 2nd Battalion Royal Regiment of Fusiliers was run down by a car and then mercilessly killed and dragged into the streets. Islamic chants of Allah is Great were heard and of course the infamous video shows one of them making political statements. They wanted to be seen, they wanted to be heard. It is not my desire to investigate the religion of Islam upon this tragic happening. It needs only to be said that according to the Word of God it is a false religion and the basis for making that statement is that the Lord Jesus Christ is according to Islam not the Eternal Son of God and God’s salvation is not found through faith alone in the finished work of Jesus Christ.