Monday, November 30, 2009

Jake Olson- watch this!!!!!

I watched this Saturday (during my sickness). It will be well worth your time. Way to go USC, Way to go Jake.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Trust the Word

"There’s a story in the biography of George Whitefield about a man named Thorpe, who was a bitter opponent of everything that is holy. He and a group of his friends—all of them young, rebellious thugs—conspired together to mock and oppose George Whitefield’s evangelistic ministry while Whitefield was preaching in Bristol, England.

George Whitefield had severely crossed eyes, if you have ever seen a realistic likeness of him. And these guys used to refer to him as “Dr. Squintum.” They called their little gang “The Hell-Fire Club,” and they disrupted meetings, mocked Whitefield on the streets and in public places, and generally tried to make his ministry a reproach in their community. Whitefield’s preaching had already made a deep and lasting impact in Bristol, and these young ruffians hated him for it. So this guy Thorpe got one of Whitefield’s published sermons and took it to the local pub, where the “Hell-Fire Club” was gathered to drink together while they make a burlesque of Whitefield.

Thorpe was apparently pretty good at doing impressions, and he had all Whitefield’s mannerisms and gestures down pat. So he stood in the center of this pub and crossed his eyes and began to deliver a derisive rendition of Whitefield’s sermon. But in the middle of the sermon, the Word of God pierced his heart, and he suddenly stopped and sat down, trembling and broken-hearted. Right then and there, he confessed the truth of the gospel and gave his heart to Christ. His aim was to taunt and ridicule, but he accidentally converted himself! Or rather, the power of the Word of God penetrated his soul and cut him to the heart. He became a preacher himself and quite an effective evangelist, because he knew so well the power of the Word of God to penetrate hardened hearts.

Notice that the Word of God pierces to the very depths, “even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” It probes to the deepest recesses of the heart, no matter how hardened or how closed the heart might be. In fact, only Scripture can do that."

(HT: Steven Camp)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What About Those Who have Never Heard the Gospel?

Fide-O Answers ... Do you agree or disagree and why?

Will the innocent native in Africa who has never heard the Gospel go to Heaven or Hell?

Often people ask, “What happens to the poor innocent native in Africa who has never heard the gospel? When he dies will he go to heaven or hell?”

My answer: The innocent native in Africa who has never heard the Gospel will go straight to Heaven when he dies.

But I follow that answer with this question: How many innocent natives are in Africa (or in any other continent in the world)?

The answer: None.

The Apostle Paul says in Romans 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever!

Notice in this passage of Scripture that the judgment of God is against all people, and it is so because they have suppressed the truth about God that God has shown to all mankind. In fact, the passage teaches that the truth about God has been clearly perceived by all men through creation and science so that nobody has no excuse to not worship the Creator God of the Bible.

Therefore even people who have never heard a preacher or has never read the Bible will still be held accountable for being sinners. Why? Because all people have chosen to reject God and worship themselves.

The Apostle Paul in chapter one of Romans proves that Natural Revelation produces Natural Theology in the heart of every person on earth. And this Natural Tehology is the basis for universal guilt of all mankind. This is why true, biblical apologetics is “presuppositional apologetics.” The Bible proves that all people know God. That means that all people are predesposed to the knowledge of God but have rejected God. Therefore, trying to prove God to a sinner is unnecessary. And if a sinner is claiming to be atheistic then it is only proof that he is determined in his rejection of Natural Theology — he is hardening his heart. Atheists are often reached by the gospel, but they are reached not by Evidential Apologists who are trying to do a better job of proving God than God already has. Rather they are reached by Presuppositional Apologists who preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ and call all people to repentance.

(HT: Fide-O)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

John Calvin on John 3:16

John wrote concerning John 3:16: "He has used a general term ["whosoever"], both to invite indiscriminately all to share in life and to cut off every excuse from unbelievers. Such also is the significance of the term 'world' which he had used before. For although there is nothing in the world deserving of God's favour, He nevertheless shows He is favorable to the whole world when he calls all without exception to the faith of Christ, which is indeed an entry into life."

Monday, November 23, 2009

Spurgeon on Preacher's Clothes

“Except a duck in pattens, no creature looks more stupid than a Dissenting preacher in a gown which is of no manner of use to him. I could laugh till I held my sides when I see our doctors in gowns and bands, puffed out with their silks, and touched up with their little bibs, for they put me so much in mind of our old turkey-cock when his temper is up, and he swells to his biggest. They must be weak folks indeed who want a man to dress like a woman before they can enjoy his sermon, and he who cannot preach without such milliner’s trumpery may be a man among geese, but he is a goose among men.”

—C.H. Spurgeon, Spurgeon’s Practical Wisdom

(HT:Shepherd Scrapbook)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Mark Marshall is Tattoo

What has Mark been doing during his week of vacation? Looking for planes.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Spurgeon: Repentance

We are to preach the motives of repentance, that men may not repent from mere fear of hell, but they must repent of sin itself. Every thief is sorry when he has to go to prison; every murderer is sorry when the noose is about his neck. The sinner must repent, not because of punishment of sin, but because his sin is sin against a pardoning God, sin against a bleeding Savior, sin against a holy law, sin against a tender Gospel. The true penitent repents of sin against God, and he would do so even if there were no punishment.
We are to tell of the source of repentance, namely, that the Lord Jesus Christ is exalted on high to give repentance and remission of sins. Repentance is a plant that never grows on nature’s dunghill: the nature must be changed, and repentance must be implanted by the Holy Spirit or it will never flourish in our hearts. We preach repentance as a fruit of the Spirit, or else we greatly err.

- Charles Spurgeon

(Truth Matters)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

So you think you can Preach!

By: Spurgeon

“Everybody thinks himself a judge of a sermon, but nine out of ten might as well pretend to weigh the moon. I believe that, at bottom, most people think it an uncommonly easy thing to preach, and that they could do it amazingly well themselves. Every donkey thinks itself worthy to stand with the king’s horses.”

—C.H. Spurgeon, Spurgeon’s Practical Wisdom: Or Plain Advice for Plain People (Banner of Truth, 2009) p. 15.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Phoney Repentance

(by Roger Ellswort]
One of the major problems of the church today is ‘phoney repentance’. Multitudes have walked down the aisle, mouthed the right words, and joined the church only to become what is delicately called ‘inactive members’. All kinds of explanations have been offered for this sad state of affairs. Some attribute the problem to ineptness in ‘follow up’. They argue that these inactive members came to church really wanting to serve the Lord, but no one told them how to go about it and they became discouraged and dropped out. Others say the problem is due to failing to teach new converts about a second level of Christian living. Often, we are told, we simply tell people to accept Jesus as Saviour and we fail to tell them they must also accept him as Lord. Many, therefore, have settled down in something of a halfway house. They are not lost, but neither are they living for the Lord. They are, the argument goes, ‘carnal Christians’ — saved, but living as unbelievers live.

The common assumption in both of these explanations is that those who have made a profession of faith are genuinely saved. Very few seem willing to allow the possibility that many of our ‘inactive members’ have simply never truly come to know God at all; that their repentance was superficial and incomplete; and that, therefore, they remain in their sins.

The reluctance to talk about phoney conversions is surprising, because Scripture has so much to say on the subject. There are, for instance, the teachings of Jesus: in the Sermon on the Mount, he explicitly warned about the danger of being deceived on our standing with God (Matt. 7:21-23); in his parable of the sower, he spoke about the ‘stony ground’ hearer who receives the word with joy but in whom the word does not take root (Matt. 13:20-21). In addition, we have clear warnings from Paul (2 Cor. 13:5), Peter (2 Pet. 1:10-11), John (1 John 2:18-19; 5:13), and the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews (6:4-6; 10:26-39) on the danger of being deceived about being converted.

We also have several notable examples of spurious conversions. The names of Esau (Heb. 12:16-17), Judas Iscariot (Acts 1:16-20), Simon Magus (Acts 8:9-24), and Demas (2 Tim. 4:10) are all inextricably linked to ‘phoney repentance’.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Charles Stanley: Repentance

“Lord, I’m really sorry I got caught.”

“God, I really regret that sin. I sure hope I can do better next time.”

Does either of these statements indicate genuine repentance? I don’t think so. Both are prompted out of guilt or embarrassment, not a heartfelt sense of remorse over the fact that the Father has been grieved. Usually, these people have no intention of changing. They just want God off of their backs.

Genuine repentance involves several things. First of all, confession. Not just, “Lord, I’m sorry for my mistake,” but “Lord, I have sinned against you.” Confession acknowledges guilt. Second, repentance involves recognizing that the sin was against God. Although David committed adultery with Bathsheba and then had her husband killed, he realized that his sin was primarily against the Lord (Ps. 51:4).

All of us need to recognize that our sin is primarily against God. Other people may be hurt as well. However, when we hold our sin up to the love of the Father expressed through the Cross, we see that is where sin is darkest.

Repentance also includes taking full responsibility for our sin. David didn’t blame Bathsheba or make any excuses for himself. He said, “For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me” (Ps. 51:3).

Whenever we catch ourselves blaming someone else for our sin, our repentance is incomplete. We should take full responsibility for our offense, no matter what happened or who was involved. Regardless of the temptation, we are ultimately the ones who chose to sin.

Last, repentance is not complete without honesty. I believe God is looking for us to be honest about our weaknesses, our failures, and our frustrations. Honesty promotes fellowship. As long as we are open and honest with the Lord, He can continue to work with us, even after we have sinned.

We get into trouble when we start to cover things up: “Now, Lord, I know I made a mistake. But after all, everybody makes mistakes. Nobody’s perfect.” Responding this way avoids the real issue and is therefore dishonest. As long as we approach God in that fashion, there is not much He can do with us.

Repentance for the Unbeliever

Repentance for those outside of Christ means a change of mind. The unbeliever is to change his mind about what he believes concerning Jesus. He moves from unbelief to belief that Christ paid the penalty for his sin. An unsaved person admits that she cannot save herself. She trusts Jesus, instead of her goodness, for eternal life. She changes her mind about God and His payment for our sin.

It is important to understand that repentance for the unbeliever is not referring to cleaning up his life. If he can earn forgiveness of sin and a home in heaven by changing his life through self-effort, there is no need for the Cross.

Repentance and belief are so intertwined that they are almost synonymous. You can not have one without the other. They are two sides of the same coin. Jesus used repentance as synonymous with belief when He said, “Thus it is written, that the Christ would suffer and rise again from the dead the third day, and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem” (Luke 24:46-47).

After you receive Jesus, you will continue to repent as you grow in Christian faith and character. This repentance is a change of mind that leads to a change in behavior.

What happens when we delay our repentance? The Bible teaches that God disciplines those who are disobedient. When we perpetuate our sin with no intention of stopping, we won’t escape the disciplining hand of the Father. However, it is my conviction that if you and I deal with our sin genuinely, openly and immediately, God can lessen the severity of our discipline. We are wise to repent quickly.

Greg Laurie: Repentance

"Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance, and do not begin to say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father.' For I say to you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones."
— Luke 3:8

What do you think of when you hear the word "repent"? Maybe you think of someone wearing a sandwich board with flames on it who is yelling, "Repent!" It's a word we don't hear very much today.

You might be surprised to know that the first word to fall from the lips of Jesus Christ after He began His public ministry was "repent" (see Matthew 4:17).

The word "repent" means more than mere regret or sorrow. You can be sorry for something and not be repentant. You can feel sorry about a certain sin, especially if you reap the consequences of it. The person who gets caught in a lie is sorry. The criminal who gets caught is sorry. But the question is whether that sorrow leads to change. It might not. The liar might just be more careful. The criminal may plot his next crime with more foresight. There are people who are sorry for reaping the consequences of what they have done, but they have never made any changes in their lives.

Real sorrow, according to the Bible, will lead to repentance. It will lead to change. John the Baptist preached to the multitudes, "Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance . . . " (Luke 3:8). Many people have never really repented of their sins. They have never really brought forth fruit in keeping with repentance. But this is absolutely necessary if you want to be forgiven of your sin. Recognition of personal sin is always the first step in receiving forgiveness.

However, you can recognize that you need to repent and still not do it. You can recognize your personal sin and not necessarily take action. The two need to come together.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Rob Bell: Repentance

Bell is no theologian. I wonder if he really understands "Biblical" repentance.

James MacDonald: Repentance

Repentance is the first step toward revival.

Repentance is the funnel through which all revival flows.
2 Corinthians 7:8–11
Paul rebukes the Corinthians for their sexual sin and rebellious spirit.
It's a good thing to be grieved over sin; sometimes you have to get to a bad place before you can get to a good place.
Repentance was the message of every Old Testament prophet.
Repentance is a key theme in the New Testament.
- Matthew 3:2; Mark 6:12; Luke 15:7; Acts 3:19; Acts 17:30
The definition of repentance is a change in me and my behavior.

MacAuthur: Repentance and Salvation

What is repentance and how does it relate to salvation?

The meaning of the word repentance has been twisted in recent years to the point that its biblical meaning is now obscured in the minds of many. The idea that genuine repentance could result in anything but a change of life is completely foreign to Scripture.

What does the Bible teach about the relationship between salvation and repentance? First, it teaches that repentance is essential to salvation. One cannot truly believe unless he repents, and one cannot truly repent unless he believes. Repentance and faith are two sides of the same coin (but they are not synonymous terms). Acts 11:18 and 2 Peter 3:9 are two of the many verses that teach that repentance is necessary for salvation. Perhaps 2 Timothy 2:25 best sums up the relationship between repentance and saving faith when it speaks of "repentance to the acknowledging of the truth" (see also Acts 20:21).

Second, the Greek word for repentance, "metanoia," while it means "to have another mind," cannot properly be defined to exclude a sense of hatred of and penitence for sin. The biblical concept of repentance involves far more than merely a casual change of thinking. Biblically, a person who repents does not continue willfully in sin. Repentance is a turning from sin, and it always results in changed behavior (Luke 3:8). While sorrow from sin is not equivalent to repentance, it is certainly an element of scriptural repentance (2 Corinthians 7:10).

Finally, despite what is being widely taught today, affirming that repentance and acknowledgement of Jesus' lordship are necessary to salvation does not "add" anything to the requirement of faith for salvation. It is not "faith plus repentance" that saves, but rather a repentant faith. The notion that salvation is possible apart from a genuine, heartfelt repentance, which includes a deep hatred of sin, is a relatively new one, neither believed nor taught by the people of God until the twentieth century.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009