ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING OF CHRISTIAN WATCH
The Annual General Meeting of Christian Watch was held this year on Friday, 3rd October, 2014 at Tamworth Road Baptist Church, Croydon at 7.30 p.m. This was the first time that the meeting had been held in the Croydon area and it was good to share fellowship with both old friends and new and to meet with the Lord’s people who attend the Church week by week.
The meeting opened with prayer and an introduction to Christian Watch by the Vice-Chairman, Ian Henderson, who outlined the reason for the existence of Christian Watch and the need to stand four-square for the truths of the Gospel. With the continuing decline in so many Churches, he emphasised the need to ‘stand in the breach’ and keep faithful to the old-fashioned Gospel message of repentance and salvation.
Outlining some of the major developments in our society today, Mr. Henderson referred to the promotion of same-sex ‘marriage’; the continuing desecration of the Lord’s Day; ecumenism – with all its links with a range of false religions; the growth and general acceptance of gay rights and the depravity that can be witnessed in all our major cities as a result of the Gay Pride parades; the introduction of women clergy and women Bishops and the constant threat to introduce Constitutional changes in our land. But, in spite of all these things, the Christian’s rest and trust is in a Sovereign God – and His Word has not changed one iota. God is still on the throne – and He maintains the same attributes today as He ever has – attributes of holiness, righteousness, justice and sin-hating.
“One thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see.”
This is a great thing to say, my soul: on what foundation dost thou rest this knowledge? If the Lord Jesus hath opened thine eyes, then indeed thou canst not but discover thy former blindness; for during that state of nature thou literally couldst discern nothing. And if thy former blindness be discovered, then thy present sight hath brought thee acquainted with new objects. Pause over the review of both this morning. The blindness of nature to spiritual things is marked in Scripture in strong characters. A poor blind sinner sees nothing of the light of life. The Sun of Righteousness is not risen upon him. He discerns nothing of the love of God in Christ. If he reads the Scripture, the vail is upon his heart. If he hears of Jesus, he sees no beauty in Him. Nothing is nearer to him than the Lord, and nothing further from his thoughts.
The Mission of the Son of Man
“For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
It is strange what unusual places Christ finds some of his people in! I knew one of Christ’s sheep who was found out by his Master while committing robbery. I knew another who was found out by Christ, while he was spiting his old mother by reading the Sunday newspaper and making fun of her. Many have been found by Jesus Christ, even in the midst of sin and vanity. I knew a preacher of the gospel who was converted in a theatre. He was listening to a play, an old-fashioned piece which ended with a sailor drinking a glass of gin before he was hung, and he said, “Here’s to the prosperity of the British nation and the salvation of my immortal soul;” and down went the curtain; and down went my friend too, for he ran home with all his might.
By: A. W. Pink
It is greatly to be feared that there are multitudes in Christendom who verily imagine and sincerely believe that they are among the saved, yet who are total strangers to a work of Divine grace in their hearts.
It is one thing to have clear intellectual conceptions of God’s truth; it is quite another matter to have a personal, real heart acquaintance with it.
By: J. C. Philpot
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.
By: Michael Hobbis
(CW Committee Member)
“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.
Author Bob Luginbill
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.
An Article by Robin Lane
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?’
An address given by Dr. E. S. Williams
(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.