Tuesday, July 05, 2011
Monday, April 18, 2011
I am including an excerpt from Charles Spurgeon’s wonderful devotional, “Morning and Evening.” This paragraph is taken from the morning devotion on December 9. I thought this might be a good follow up to Sunday Morning’s sermon.
“Therefore will the Lord wait that he may be gracious unto you.”
God often delays in answering prayer. We have several instances of this in sacred Scripture. Jacob did not get the blessing from the angel until near the dawn of day—he had to wrestle all night for it. The poor woman of Syrophenicia was answered not a word for a long while. Paul besought the Lord thrice that “the thorn in the flesh” might be taken from him, and he received no assurance that it should be taken away, but instead thereof a promise that God’s grace should be sufficient for him. If thou hast been knocking at the gate of mercy, and hast received no answer, shall I tell thee why the mighty Maker hath not opened the door and let thee in? Our Father has reasons peculiar to himself for thus keeping us waiting. Sometimes it is to show his power and his sovereignty, that men may know that Jehovah has a right to give or to withhold. More frequently the delay is for our profit. Thou art perhaps kept waiting in order that thy desires may be more fervent. God knows that delay will quicken and increase desire, and that if he keeps thee waiting thou wilt see thy necessity more clearly, and wilt seek more earnestly; and that thou wilt prize the mercy all the more for its long tarrying. There may also be something wrong in thee which has need to be removed, before the joy of the Lord is given. Perhaps thy views of the Gospel plan are confused, or thou mayest be placing some little reliance on thyself, instead of trusting simply and entirely to the Lord Jesus. Or, God makes thee tarry awhile that he may the more fully display the riches of his grace to thee at last. Thy prayers are all filed in heaven, and if not immediately answered they are certainly not forgotten, but in a little while shall be fulfilled to thy delight and satisfaction. Let not despair make thee silent, but continue instant in earnest supplication. 
Wednesday, April 06, 2011
Here are some words of wisdom from Dr. Charles Stanley.
“Is there any challenge you are facing? Are there people or circumstances aligned against you in your health, finances, career, relationships, or walk with the Lord? If you want to overcome difficulty, the absolute best way is by spending time alone with God. Only He can give you victory.
How do you fight this battle on your knees? First you do so by setting aside time alone with the Father. It is easy to be distracted. You become so busy fretting about you troubles and running after solutions that you fail to turn to the One who can best help you. (
Second, listen to the Father and expect Him to speak to you. Prayer is not just telling the Lord how you feel – although that is part of it. Rather, He wants to reveal Himself to you and direct you in the way you should go.
Third, if the Lord reveals any sinfulness in your life, repent of it immediately. Remember, the Father’s primary goal is to have an intimate relationship with you. When sin is present, it is evidence that you are hindering Him from having full access to your Life. Therefore, agree with God about your iniquity and allow Him to teach you. He will show you how to change the way you operate for maximum intimacy with Him, effectiveness in your life, and influence with others.
Fourth, remember there can only be on general in this battle – and that is the Lord. God willingly employs His supernatural power in defending you, training you, and bringing out your full potential. However, you must be willing to acknowledge that He is in control and knows the path ahead better than you do.
Fifth, see everything that happens to you as coming from God. Why would you do this? Because if the Father allows a trial or challenge in your life, it is ultimately for your good and His glory (
The truth, is, you and I are always going to encounter struggles until we go home to heaven. However, God has promised, “No weapon that is formed against you will prosper, and every tongue that accuses you in judgment you will condemn. (
Hope this blesses you like it has me.
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
I enjoy having responses to my articles. Even from people who do not agree with me. To answer the brother (or sister!) who responded to my last article, let me quote Spurgeon on theological systems.
"It has been my earnest endeavor ever since I have preached the Word, never to keep back a single doctrine which I believe to be taught of God. It is time that we have done with the old and rusty systems that have so long curbed the freeness of religious speech. The Arminian trembles to go an inch beyond Arminius or Wesley, and many a Calvinist refers to John Gill or John Calvin as any ultimate authority. It is time that the systems were broken up, and that there was sufficient grace in all our hearts to believe everything taught in God's Word, whether it was taught by either of these men or not . . . . If God teaches it, it is enough. If it is not in the Word, away with it! Away with it! But if it be in the Word, agreeable or disagreeable, systematic or disorderly, I believe it."
Amen - Spoken as only a Baptist could say it!
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Labels and Name Calling
I've noticed over the past few years that many folks want to put a 'label' on me theologically. They want to know if I'm conservative (I am), if I am an inerrantist (I am), if I am an expositor (definitely), or if I am a Calvinist. The first three are easy. Each represents a specific theological position that is understood by most people. But it seems everybody has their own definition of Calvinist. What the person asking the question means may be different than what I mean when I answer. So, I always ask "What do you mean by Calvinist?
If you are asking if I hold to the five points of Calvinism, then the answer is no. I am not a five-point Calvinist. If you are asking if I believe that God is absolutely sovereign and rules over the affairs of this universe, then my answer is yes. I believe that. Do I believe that God arbitrarily picked some to save and damned others to hell, then no I don't believe that. If you are asking if I believe that humanity is hopelessly lost in sin, needing a savior, and that God must draw them to Christ before they can be saved, then yes I believe that. Do I believe that the atonement is so limited that Christ's death was solely for the sake of the elect, no I do not believe that. Do I believe that Christ died for the sins of the world, that his atonement was sufficient for all, but only effectual to those who received him by faith, yes I believe that. Do I believe that election simply means that God knew in advance who would be saved, no I do not believe that. Do I believe that election is God's sovereign display of His glory whereby he regenerates, justifies, and sanctified, and glorifies sinners, but is in no way inconsistent with the free agency of man, O yes I believe that.
Do I believe that all true believers endure to the end? You bet I do.
Some people have claimed that my theology is a hodge-podge. I disagree. I believe it is Biblical. I preach and hold to the truth that God is sovereign, not man. Yet, the Bible is clear that our choice about salvation matters. I like what Macarthur stated about election and human responsibility. They are like twin tracks on a railroad. They run side by side throughout eternity.
Finally, I am not a big "systems" man. My goal is to have a Biblical theology. That, friend, is why I do label myself a Baptist, not a Calvinist or a covenant theological or a dispensationalist - I am Baptist. To me that simply means "Biblical.
Thursday, June 17, 2010
Here are few ideas for short-term Bible reading plans.
30 Days with jesus
Day Theme Passage
1 Jesus Foretold Isaiah 53
2 The Birth of Jesus Matthew 1:18–25
3 John the Baptist Prepares the Way and Baptizes Jesus Matthew 3:1—4:11
4 Water to Wine and the Samaritan Woman John 2:1–11; John 4:1–26
5 Jesus Rejected in his Hometown Luke 4:14–30
6 Jesus Calls his Disciples Luke 5:1–11; Matthew 9:9–13
7 Sermon on the Mount Luke 6:17–46
8 A Centurion, a Widow’s Son and a Sinful Woman Matthew 8:1–13;
Luke 7:11–17; 7:36–50
9 Encounters With the Pharisees Matthew 12:1–13; 22–45
10 Parable of the Sower, Weeds and Seeds Matthew 13:1–43
11 Jesus Calms the Storm and Later Walks on Water Luke 8:22–25; Mark 6:45–56
12 Jesus Heals a Man, Woman and Girl Mark 5:1–43
13 Feeding of the 5000 John 6:1–14
14 Peter Identifies the Christ and the Transfiguration Luke 9:18–27; Luke 17:1–8
15 Healing by Faith Mark 9: 14–32
16 Teachings and Parables Matthew 17:24—18:20
17 Teachings and Parables Matthew 18:21—19:15
18 The Rich Young Ruler Mark 10:17–31
19 Disciples Sent Out Luke 10:1–24
20 The Good Samaritan Luke 10:25–37
21 Jesus Teaches how to Pray Luke 11:1–13
22 Jesus Revives Lazarus John 11:1–44
23 Jesus Comes to Jerusalem Matthew 21:1–27
24 The Last Supper John 13:1–17; Matthew 26:17–35
25 Comfort for the Disciples John 14–15
26 Jesus Arrested and Disowned Matthew 26:36–75
27 Jesus’ Trial John 18:19—19:16
28 Jesus Crucifixion and Death John 19:17–42
29 Jesus’ Resurrection and Appearances John 20–21
30 The Great Commission and the Ascension of Jesus Matthew 28:16–20; Luke 24:50–53
30 Days for New Christians
Day Theme Passage
1 The Fall of Humanity Genesis 3:1–19
2 A People for God Genesis 28:10–15; 32:22–28
3 The Ten Commandments Exodus 20:1–17
4 Sacrifices Required Under Law Leviticus 5:14–19
5 Punishments for Sin Under Law Leviticus 20:7–27
6 Obedience From Love Deuteronomy 11:13–21
7 Cycles of Disobedience Judges 2:10–19
8 The People Demand a King 1 Samuel 8
9 Saul Fails and Is Rejected 1 Samuel 15:17–23
10 Many Kings Fail Jeremiah 1–17
11 The Sin of the People Ezekiel 20:5–26
12 An Eternal King Promised Jeremiah 23:1–6; Isaiah 9:6–7; Zechariah 9:9–10
13 The Promised King Is Born Luke 2:1–20
14 The Word Became Flesh John 1:1–18
15 Signs and Miracles of Authority Matthew 9:1–8; Luke 13:10–17
16 Jesus Fulfills the Law Matthew 5:17–20; Romans 8:1–4
17 Jesus Teaches About New Life John 3
18 Jesus Willingly Taken John 18:1–11
19 Jesus’ Death and Resurrection Luke 23:44—24:12
20 Christ a Sacrifice for All Hebrews
21 God’s Wrath Explained Romans 1:18–32
22 God’s Judgment Explained Romans 2:5–11
23 Righteousness by Faith Romans 3:9–26
24 Life Through Christ Romans 5:12–21
25 Life by the Spirit Romans 8:1–17; Galatians 5:16–26
26 Living Sacrifices Romans 12
27 Walking in the Light 1 John 1–2
28 Living for God 1 Peter 1–11
29 Love for one Another 1 John 3:11–24
30 Promise of Eternity 2 Corinthians 5:1–10; Revelation 21:1–4
Hope this helps.
Monday, January 18, 2010
John the Baptist was one of the most colorful characters in the NT. He was a fiery preacher, and a desert dwelling prophet calling people to a radical commitment to God. G. Campbell Morgan stated in his commentary on Luke that we need some John the Baptists today. We need people to prepare the way of the Lord. The church needs men and women who will stand up and stand out for God. But today, as in John's day, a prophet's message is seldom well-received. John was imprisoned and ultimately beheaded for his preaching. Here in America we will not lose our life for our witness, at least not yet, but we may lose our reputation. We may lose our jobs or our friends. Prophetic living always carries a price.
Will you live a prophetic lifestyle? Will you take up the mantle and example of John? I don't mean move to the desert and wear camel's hair underwear. I do mean live an uncompromising and God-saturated life. It may carry a cost, but the blessing is much greater.