Monday, December 25, 2006
Sunday, December 24, 2006
Friday, December 15, 2006
Before your imagination runs away with you as you wonder how much it will be and if I am so financially well off that I can give most of it away and live on what's left... I must tell you that it isn't money. It isn't property either seeing that I don't own even a square inch of land anywhere on this earth. As far as earthly possessions go, I have very little to give them that would have any monetary value.
What, one might ask, is the inheritance that you are giving to your kids ? I warn you, this isn't going to be very exciting: The inheritance I'm giving my three children is worn out Bibles.
I had 3 shadow boxes made large enough to hold a Bible. To Steve, the first born, I am giving my first "preaching Bible". To Jeremy, the second born, my second "preaching Bible. To Elizabeth, the baby and only girl, I'm giving the third "preaching Bible".
These Bibles have no monetary value to anyone. To me, however, they represent something far more valuable than money that I want to pass down to my children. When and/or if they remember me when I have gone from this earth, I want them to remember that, with all my failures, my life was dedicated to the preaching of God's Word.
I think all parents would agree that parenting is difficult under the best of circumstances. It comes with a built-in guilt trip. As I look back over the last 28 years of my life as a minister, my failures nag at me and remind me that I haven't always been the best dad. I could have been kinder and more understanding with them as they grew up. I wish I hadn't been so determined to get everything "right" that I took away some of their freedom to just be kids. There were thousands of down right stupid things that I'm trying hard to forget, am hoping that they won't hold them against me.
At times during their childhood, my children were forced to live in less than ideal conditions (while on the mission field and while preparing to go to the field). I hope that when they see these worn out Bibles, that they will be reminded that we were in those conditions because their mother and I were trying to serve God and His gospel as best we could.
My prayer is that my flickering, faltering passion for God and His Word has and will infect my children with a greater passion than I have ever shown, and that they will in turn infect their children with that same passion. Then, one day in a better land, if Jan and I can gather our children and grandchildren together at the feet of Jesus, and join them in singing "Thou art worthy"; I will know that this was the best inheritance I could have left them.
Thursday, December 14, 2006
Thursday, December 07, 2006
Last week, as I was meditating on Psalm 17, I was blown away by both the tone and the content of David's prayer, especially by the first four verses. Here read them for yourself.
Psa 17:1 Hear the right, O LORD, attend unto my cry, give ear unto my prayer, that goeth not out of feigned lips.
Psa 17:2 Let my sentence come forth from thy presence; let thine eyes behold the things that are equal.
Psa 17:3 Thou hast proved mine heart; thou hast visited me in the night; thou hast tried me, and shalt find nothing; I am purposed that my mouth shall not transgress.
Psa 17:4 Concerning the works of men, by the word of thy lips I have kept me from the paths of the destroyer.
See what I mean? David is asking God to hear his prayer based on his own personal integrity, rightness and innocence. Now we all know that David would never make any claim to sinless perfection, but in this instance, he claims to be clean.
How could anyone , even a pre-Bathsheba David be bold enough to pray this way? I think the reason that David could pray this way is that as far as his claim to personal integrity went, it was true. There are at least 3 very important things that had characterized David's life up to that point. (This Psalm was probably written during the time when he was fleeing from Saul.) Three things that he constantly practiced, that made it possible for him to pray this way.
First and most importantly, he worshiped God. God's own testimony of him was:"...I have found David... A man after mine own heart..."(Acts13:22) David spent much time in communion with God. He knew God's heart and sought to model it in his own life. He lived with a constant awareness of God. He lived his life before the Lord. Psalm 8 brings to my mind an image of young David, the shepherd, sitting on a Judean hill looking into a vast, starlit sky and worshiping the God who is great enough to make it all; yet is merciful enough to condescend to lowly man. When one lives like that, there are no impediments to prayer.
Also, David was careful. He tried always face every trial in a way that would most glorify God. He was careful not to seek his own advancement. He was careful not to act rashly, even when men would say he was justified in doing so. One of the greatest examples of this is his treatment of Saul while he was trying to kill David. On at least two occasions, it appeared that God had delivered Saul into David's hands. The occasion at En-gedi illustrates David's carefulness. David and his men are in a cave. Saul, not knowing that David and his men are in the cave, goes in to take a break(?). While he is there and very vulnerable, David is encouraged by his men to take advantage of the situation. "God has delivered your enemy into your hands" they say. David refuses to harm Saul, but he does cut off a part of Saul's robe. Then David's heart convicts him for even going that far in "Touching the Lord's anointed". When one is that careful with his actions and attitudes; when one is that sensitive in his heart, there will be no hindrance to prayer.
The third characteristic of David's young life, that enabled him to pray with such boldness, was his utter dependence on God. When David faced Goliath, he did not go with Saul's armour. He refused the armour not because it didn't fit, for surely there was armour available that would have fit his size. He refused the armour because it represented a dependence on human ingenuity. He wanted every one to know who the real Protector of Israel was. He went to battle the giant depending on God.
When David faced Saul at En-gedi after the robe trimming incident, he explained his refusal to harm Saul in this way:
1Sa 24:12 The LORD judge between me and thee, and the LORD avenge me of thee: but mine hand shall not be upon thee.
David knew that God had anointed him to be king. He knew that one day he was destined to sit on the throne of Israel. Even so, he would not put forth his hand to take it for himself. He would wait for God to do it in His time and in His way. One whose life is characterized by utter dependence on God will be able to pray boldly.
The point of all this rambling is this: The way we live is vitally connected to the way we pray. We can't live sloppy, half-hearted, semi-worldly lives and expect to pray in holy boldness. Because of the way David lived, he was able to come before God with confidence. Or as someone has said: "As a son seeking approval rather than as a criminal seeking pardon."
"The whole life must pray"(Tozer), not just our lips.
Wednesday, December 06, 2006
Another reason is that every time I go to my dashboard, it tries to convince me to change. I'm weak. I didn't wanna do it, but I doed it.
Reason number next is that, according to 'them', Blogger in Beta is better than Blogger in Blogger. Yeah, really! It says you can drag and drop stuff. Really! I'm not kiddin'.
Folks, to be honest with you, I don't have a clue about draggin' anything on the computer, but I'm sure if I do drag it, I'll prolly drop it.
And finally, I changed 'cause they said that within a couple of months everyone would be required to change. I would have refused, but it's just not the hill I want to die on.
Hope it doesn't cause you any trouble trying to access this blog or comment. O.K. Open the flood gates! Let the responses flow!
Monday, December 04, 2006
Later that day, he found that one of his patrons was a Southern Baptist pastor. He still had a warm glow in his heart from his experience with the pastor of the previous day, so when he finished with this pastor's hair, he again refused payment. The pastor was very appreciative, and the next morning when the barber arrived at his shop, he found on his door a thank-you note and a gift card for lunch at a local restaurant from the Southern Baptist pastor. His heart almost overflowed as he thought to himself "You can't out-give God".
Later that day an Independent Baptist pastor came into the shop and again, the barber refused payment saying "God has blessed me for not charging two other pastors so I won't charge you either". The next morning as he neared his shop he found..............Fifteen Independent Baptist preachers wanting a free haircut.
Friday, December 01, 2006
While so many in the blogosphere are battling insignificant things like Lordship salvation, antinomianism and such, a horrible heresy is being voiced all across the world, and no one seems to care. Well, I care! And by jimeny(Sorry. Didn't mean to swear.)I'm gonna thunder out the truth even if it costs me my head!
What is this grievious falsehood that is so widely taught and so universally ignored? I'm glad you asked. It seems that almost everywhere I hear or read some one refering to the humble birth of Jesus, they always say that He was born in a manger. Nuh-uhh! He was born in a stable and laid in a manger.
Whew! I said it!I guess I 'm feeling a little bit like Martin Luther must have felt as he put it all on the line to rescue truth from evil hands of heretics. Both at peace and at the same time a little bit scared. But we have to choose our battles, and folks, I am ready to go to the wall for this one. Besides, all the really good stuff to fight about has already been taken by guys like Centuri0n,
Dan Phillips, Phil Johnson, Jeremy, and Daniel at Doulogos.
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Last week (Wednesday-Saturday) I was in Daytona at the annual Turkey Run car show. This event is held inside the Daytona Speedway, and is one of the largest car shows in the country. This year there were 5,150 participants. That's a lot of cars! Which makes it almost heaven for a gear head like me.
I know I need to quit the car thing, but...but I like 'em. I think I know exactly how Eve must have felt in the Garden of Eden when she looked at the forbidden fruit. She knew she shouldn't. But it was soooo nice and beautiful and desirable. So... she took it. That was me at the car show. If I didn't look, I could resist the temptation to buy quite easily. But I looked. I looked until I could have looked my eyes away(ht Spurgeon).
I didn't buy anything, however, because my car didn't sell. Phooey! But I did see some really cool stuff. I had intended to take some pictures for the blog, but I forgot my camera every day. Phooooey!
The cars that caught my attention the most were "rat rods". Rat rods are a throw back to the days when most of us couldn't afford to have a really nice car, so instead of spending money on the appearance, the drive train (motor, tranie,rear end) received the attention. I think maybe nostalgia is the driving force behind the old car craze.
Anyhoo, these are some pictures of rat rods that I gleaned from other places. Take care as you look at these pictures. Your past is comin' to getcha.
By the way, I suppose that you have noticed that all the cars pictured above are dirty low down Fords. If you will look closely, however, you can see that they each have Chevy motors. They were built Ford tough using Chevy stuff!
Saturday, November 18, 2006
There is a down side to your new found celebrity, though. Your life has peaked. It's all down hill from here.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
A Mexican Independent Baptist pastor, who was serving a church in Veracruz, came to visit me one day. This was a bit unusual, considering that he had ridden a bus over 90 miles to get to my house. Since indigenous pastors are notoriously poor, I wondered why he had sacrificed his meager resources just to come for a visit.
The mystery was soon cleared up, though, as he began to tell me that he had a serious problem with a member of his church. He said "We have a brother in the church that is demon possessed. He is fine during the day time, but as it begins to get on toward evening, he begins to scream and cry and even curse. This goes on until morning. By then he is so tired that he has to sleep and can't work." He went on to say,"I am trying to get a group of faithful Christians together to come to Veracruz and have an all-night prayer meeting with this brother in order to cast the demon out of him. Will you help?"
That kinda put me on the spot because I had never cast out a demon before. I had never advertised myself as a demon caster outer, nor did I have any desire to learn about casting out demons. However, I did and do believe that demons exist. I believe that they are against God and His purposes. I believe that we are engaged in spiritual warfare. I believe as Paul said in Eph.6:12 that we "Wrestle....against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." But here is what I don't believe: I don't believe that Satan or his minions have any inherent power. They have no power other than what is given to them.
With that in mind, my response to this sincere pastor's request was fourfold:
#1 Stop calling him brother, because, if it is true that he is possessed, he is not a brother in Christ.
#2 Neither Satan himself nor his demons have the ability nor the authority to possess anyone at their whim. Satan cannot take it upon himself to knock down a person's will and take over without permission from God and/or that person.(Isn't it strange that people are willing to grant that power to Satan, who is not sovereign, but not to God who is?) See the 1st two chapters of Job. Although Job in this text was not being "possessed", he was being attacked. However, the principle is clearly taught here that the Devil cannot do just anything without permission. He couldn't touch Job's possessions without permission and he couldn't touch Job' s person without permission, and even then, Satan's boundaries are clearly set.
#3 Without a doubt, this man has opened a door in his life to let those demonic influences in. Find out where the door is open, exhort him to repent of that sin thereby closing the door to satanic influences, exhort him to seek Christ for salvation, and the demon will be gone.(James4:7) "Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."
#4No amount of praying, pleading the blood, or rebuking the devil, will do any good if he is unwilling to repent of sin, trust Christ, and resist the devil.
Well, the pastor left my house not a little offended. I dare say that he was hoping for a very dramatic and emotional experience that he would be able to tell about for years to come. A tale of spiritual warfare in which he and a few holy men of God prayed all night, confronted the demon, rebuked him in the name of Jesus and pitched him out on his ear. But, if he took my advice, there would be very little drama. No possibility of humbly shaking hands with the brethren while proudly saying "We did it! We cast out a demon!"
THE CONCLUSION OF THE STORY
I didn't hear from the pastor for a while, until we met at an area wide youth meeting. He came to me and said that he hadn't cared much for my advice at first, but as he thought about it, he began to think it was worth a try. He began to investigate and found that the family of the young man was deeply involved in the occult: fortune telling, astrology and such. After making a profession of faith, he had distanced himself from his family's satanic practices for a while, but soon the temptation was too great and he began to participate again. That's when the problem started. The pastor told me that when they confronted him about this, he confessed, repented, surrendered to the Lordship of Christ, moved out of the house where the temptation was and had no more trouble with demons. No drama. Just simple obedience to the Word of God.
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Biblical Christianity: Twenty-five stupid reasons for dissing dispensationalism
Sunday, November 12, 2006
Although his booking agency normally doesn't allow him to appear in insignificant venues of congregations less than 1000, the Doxoblogist, aka Jeremy Weaver, has made an exception and agreed to preach at Way of Life Baptist Church.
"I guess I can make an exception just this once" said the Doxoblogist, " as long as you understand that if I say anything smart or quotable,the quote will be my property and cannot be used without giving me proper credit and financial consideration".
To this I hastily agreed saying,"Sure, Jeremy, if you say anything smart, we'll be glad to pay you for it."
Friday, November 10, 2006
Total Depravity or total inability
Limited Atonement or Particular Redemption
Irresistible Call or Effectual call
Perseverance in Grace
Many people are terrified of these truths, I believe, simply because they dethrone man and his 'free will', and enthrone God and His sovereignty. But hey! That's the very reason I love them.
Left to myself, I would never have sought Him. Left to my free will, I would have sought only my own pleasure. But ,thanks be unto God, I was not left to myself. He, who set His love on me before the foundation of the world(Eph.1:4), not only paid for my sins in Christ; He orchestrated all the circumstances of my life to lead me to a saving surrender to His amazing grace (Rom.8:28-30).
The effect this truth has on me is to cause me to fall before Him, to take my place in the dust as a helpless, repentant sinner, and to acknowledge His right to sit upon the throne of His glory.
I love the Doctrines of Grace because they teach me to worship. This is the essence of true worship: To see Him as He is and myself as I am. When that happens I cannot help but worship.
Sunday, November 05, 2006
This is my current project. It is a 1968 Nova. I am trying to get it ready to take to the Turkey Run at Daytona Thanksgiving week. Hopefully, it won,t be coming back home with me.
This is a'66 Nova that I sold recently unfinished.
This is a '55 Chevy that I sold a few months ago. Shoulda kept it.
This week, I am preaching Sunday morning, Monday night, and Tuesday night at Faith Baptist Church outside of Lakeland ,Fl.
Brethren, pray for me!
Friday, October 27, 2006
As I began to fellowship with the Lord, I praised Him for His majesty and glory. I thanked Him for His grace toward me and His mercy on me (Oh! How I lean on His mercy). Then, as usual, I began to confess my failures and lament my shortcomings as a child of God and as a preacher of the gospel
Oddly enough, even as I was confessing these things, I was feeling pretty good about myself as I said " I wish I were more spiritual." "I wish I walked closer to you." I wish I had gone further and worked harder in the study of Your Word."
Then, in a flash, this thought came to my mind:" You might not be as spiritual as you wish you were , but you are as spiritual as you want to be." Ouch!
Friends, it appears that I had been neglecting to truly repent of failure in the sanctification process of my spiritual life by comforting myself with the thought that I wish I were better than I am. Jeremiah nailed it when he said:"The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked:..." (Jer.17:9) All this time, I thought I was a pretty sincere fellow. I thought I was really pleasing God by confessing what I wish I were.
The fact is, folks, we mostly are what we want to be. We pray as much and as sincerely as we want to. We display Christ in our lives as much as we really want to. We dig into God's word as much as we really want to. We walk as closely with Him as we really want to.
To say I wish to be what I am unwilling to pay the cost to be, reveals the deep seated depravity and hypocrisy of my heart.
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
Monday, October 16, 2006
I think I have figured out why the multitudes are not flocking to hear me preach. The image at the top is an example of what is in my head while I'm trying to prepare my sermon. The bottom is the result when I get to the pulpit.
This has been a difficult confession, but healing can't start until the disease has been identified.
Saturday, October 07, 2006
For some reason, I can't seem to make these photos appear in the right order. Nevertheless, I'd like to see who can identify the correct year and body style of these 5 old Chevys. Aside from the model year and cosmetics, there is one major difference in the body style of these cars. What is it?
If you guess right, you won't win anything. However, at least we will know that you have not completely wasted your life.
Sunday, October 01, 2006
Some preachers have trouble with lust in a variety of areas. Mine happens to be in the area of old Chevys. I try not to look, but then I look. I try not to touch, but then I touch. I say that I'll never do it again, but I do. I have sought deliverance, and finally, it seems that the Lord has heard my anguished cry. I'm broke. Now if I could just do something about these tormenting automotive dreams.
Sunday, September 24, 2006
However, as I think about it this morning, it may very well be impossible for some (or should I say many) of our folks to really worship. Why? Because Worship on Sunday cannot be separated from how we have responded to God from Monday thru Saturday.
If we really want to worship God on Sunday, we must be worshipful on all the other days. We do that by looking to the Word of God as a revelation of His glory and His will for us. As we do so, according to IICor.3:18, we begin to progressively reflect God's glory, from one degree to another, and to another , and another, and so on until we become reflections of God's glory in this world. It is a never ending process. If we stop progressing, we stop reflecting.
In light of this, I think that at least one aspect of true corporate worship is God's people coming together in one place and , in a sense, reflecting back to Him the image that has been stamped upon us through our faithfulness and obedience to His Word. If that image is being reproduced in us, we will worship and be carried to another degree of glory. If that image is not being imprinted on us we will not be able to truly worship Him.
In other words, we can't live careless, half-hearted, and largely disobedient lives all week and then expect to acceptably worship God on Sunday.
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Luk 11:2 And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.
Luk 11:3 Give us day by day our daily bread.
Luk 11:4 And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.
One of the things that characterized the humanity of Jesus was His praying. Luke, who focuses much on the perfection of His humanity, was obviously awed by the praying of Jesus, leading him to write more about it than any of the other gospel writers. Jesus' communion with the Father surely would have been an awesome thing to witness. It was during one of these times of divine interaction between the Son on earth and the Father in heaven that one of His awe-struck disciples said:"Lord, teach us to pray".
In His response to this request, Jesus gave to His disciples and to us the secret of successful praying. What is that secret? Simply stated it is this: Get in tune with God. By that I mean that when Jesus taught prayer to His disciples, He simply told them to pray for the things that the Father intends to do. He taught His followers to desire the things that God desires.
In this model prayer, each item that we are to pray for is something that God is doing or that He desires. As John Piper constantly reminds us, God is passionate for His glory. Therefore, we are taught to pray "...hallowed be thy name" .We know that God has a plan and that He is accomplishing His will in the earth, so Jesus teaches us to pray "...thy kingdom come, thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth". God is the source of all that we need and He delights to provide for His own, therefore, we are told to pray "...give us day by day our daily bread". God is full of mercy. He delights to show mercy and He wants His people to love it and show it like He does, so we are instructed, not only to seek it for ourselves, but to be a channel of mercy to others as we pray"...forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us". God's will for us is to lead us in the way of holiness, and He wants us to want that way also, so we are lead to pray"And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil."
Why would Jesus teach us to pray for things that, in a very real sense, our Father in heaven is doing anyway? The answer is simply this: Real prayer is not my attempt to get God to 'tune in' to me, but real prayer is me getting in tune with God. It is not about convincing God to get in on what I am doing, but about me getting in on what God is doing.
Friday, August 18, 2006
Regardless of our eschatological positions, we all have to believe that (a) Jesus is coming and(b) we must give an accounting of our stewardship (Rom.14:12 ).
The fact that we must give account of ourselves to God seems to have thrown cold water on many a believer's longing for the return of Christ. The reason for this guilt induced coolness is that we know that we have not been obedient and faithful with the time, treasures, and talents with which we have been entrusted.
This is sad, brethren, because our Lord never intended it to be this way. He never intended that His people dread His coming. For this reason He has given us His Word, His Spirit, and His Church to guide us so that we might be able to greet His coming with confidence and not with shame.
The purpose of this post is to help God's people to so order their lives that they will be able to look forward to the review of their works (whenever and however that may take place [Insert your time table here.]) with joy. I'm not on an ego trip here. I really can tell you how you can not only endure the review of your life as a Christian, but how you can do it with joy.
# 1. Desire to honor Him more than you desire to be honored.
Make His glory your passion.
In every decision and in every deed, ask yourself: How can I most glorify my Heavenly Father
# 2. Desire to be holy more than you desire to be happy.
Sadly, we make most of our decisions based on what will make us happy. If we make
holiness our goal, we might not always be happy, but we will experience a Spirit wrought
joy and peace that passes understanding.
# 3. Desire to rob hell more than you desire to reach heaven.
This is a tough one. It will take some major restructuring of our priorities by the Holy
Spirit. This was the sacrificial spirit of Christ who left heaven to effectually redeem His
people. It was the sacrificial spirit that was reproduced in Paul who wrote:
9:1 I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost,
Rom 9:2 That I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart.
Rom 9:3 For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh:
Of course, it's impossible for us to give up our salvation so that someone else can be saved.
However, if we had that kind of passion for the lost, we would be able to give up a meal or
two in order to pray for them.
We would be able to give up a little of our time in order to go give them the Good News.
We would be able to give up some of our money to missionary projects.
All said, this is simply Christ-likeness. It is the image of Christ reflected in a human life. I think God would be pleased with that.
Sure. There's probably more to it than that, but while we try to come up with more, let's start on these.
Friday, August 11, 2006
Often, as I was speaking with the pastor or one of the members, either before or after the service, this assertion would be made: "Bro. Weaver, if you spend your whole life in Mexico and just one soul gets saved, it will be worth it all." Now, nobody would want to disagree with a statement like that, least of all a missionary seeking financial support. However, this was always my response: "Since I am going to Mexico in obedience to the call of God, and since the power to save is not mine anyway( I can only deliver a message. Only God can call and covert my hearers), and since it is all for His glory; if I spend my whole life there in obedience to my Lord and no one gets saved, it will still be worth it all. "
How's that for a long and controversial sentence?
Feel free to question it, comment on it, or criticize it.
Thank God, some were saved! It certainly wasn't because of me, though. God, in His great mercy, quickened the hearts and ears of some to hear and understand a gringo preaching in Spanish with a Tennessee hillbilly accent, the Gospel of Christ. One of those eventually became my daughter- in- law(Jeremy's wife, Magaly).
It really is "Worth it all".
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
particular accusation is that it's true. We may be accused of 1001 things that are completely untrue. But this is not one of them. It is true. We don't always practice what we preach. The Bible that we preach is a revelation of a perfect God in whom is" no darkness at all"(1Jn.1:5). The effects of the fall have left us incapable (in this life at least) of perfect obedience to the perfect precepts and commands of Holy Scripture. Our problem in this regard is that although our fallen natures have not been irradicated by the new birth, we are called upon to declare glorious truths and lofty concepts. And since there is little or no impediment to our talking better than we live, we become guilty as charged.
Though we don't always practice what we preach, we do always practice what we believe. What we really believe always comes through in our actions. A correct understanding of God and His attributes will cause me to live in a way that is consistent with that understanding. Likewise, a faulty conception of God will allow me to live far below the Scriptural standard.
This is why the study of theology is so important. Wrong thinking leads to wrong living and wrong living leads to a confrontation with a holy God.
This is also why we, as pastors should be as passionate about the preparation of our sermons as we desire to be in their delivery. We must expound the scriptures to our people tirelessly so that they may think rightly about God. Paul's words to Timothy were "Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine."(2Tim.4:2)
Preach the Word, brethren. It will have a life - changing effect on it's hearers. "And that from a child thou hast known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus."(2Tim.3:15)
Thursday, August 03, 2006
Excuse #1 I'm a busy man.
Excuse#2 I've been away, which means I had a lot of catching up to do when I got back.
Excuse#3 I'm a lazy man. Hey! maybe that's a reason.
Excuse#4 I'm not a smart man. I have great difficulty with expressing my thoughts in writing. For example, I've been trying to write a post on Luke 13:23 for a while now, and it still doesn't read right.
But anyway, to my surprise, while I was bouncing along in slacker heaven, I got tagged! Good ol' Terry Stauffer, of NEW LUMPS fame, put the 'hit' on me.
Ordinarily, it wouldn't be a problem for me to answer these questions about books since I recently did a post on books and reading. However, after reading Terry's answers to these questions, I'm a little embarrased by my light -weight (by comparrison) responses. I guess Canadians are deep thinkers (with the obvious exception of Bugblaster).
O.K. Enough whining. Here are my resposes:
1.One book that changed your life:
Early in my Christian life, I was greatly influinced by A.W. Tozer, E.M.Bounds, and Leonard Ravenhill. However, I would have to say that DON'T WASTE YOUR LIFE by John Piper, is currently having a great impact on my life. The more I read it, the more I am convicted and motivated .
2.One book that you've read more than once:
THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO JESUS by John MacArthur.
3.One book that you'd want on a deserted island:
Since it's a deserted island, Let's Go Soul Winning by Jack Hyles is out of the running. If I had to choose one book only, it would have to be a Bible. If I had to choose only one book besides the Bible, it would probably be STUDIES IN THE SERMON ON THE MOUNT by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones.
4.One book that made you laugh:
WHAT LOVE IS THIS by Dave Hunt, because it was given to me by a pastor who had invited me to preach a revival in his church. He gave me the book just before I went to the pulpit on the 2nd night of the meeting.
5.One book that made you cry:
WHAT LOVE IS THIS by Dave Hunt for the same reason listed above and for it's content.
6.One book that you wish had been written:
A SURE-FIRE WAY TO MAKE PEOPLE BE FAITHFUL IN CHURCH ATTENDANCE by Anybody Jones.
7.One book you wish had never been written:
Can I say the same one again? WHAT LOVE IS THIS.
8.One book that you are currently reading:
GETTING THINGS DONE by David Allen. This book arrived by mail yesterday from my son Steve. I started reading it immediately. It looks like it's going to be very helpful. Hopefully it'll hep me git stuff did.
One book that you've been meaning to read:
THE WORKS OF HENRY SCOUGAL by Henry Scougal.
Monday, July 10, 2006
Wednesday, July 05, 2006
Saturday, July 01, 2006
The shuttle is very important to our town because this area is almost totally dependant on the space industry.
Many of our church folks either are now working at "the Cape" or are retired from there.
One of our most faithful ladies works directly on the shuttle.
I heard that Office Depot had a digital camera on sale with the photo printer for $100, so off to Merrit Island I went to snag one. They were sold out. Bummer! But there is good news. I whined about how I can't never git nuthin' to one of my deacons. He said I'm going on a trip, so I'll see if I can find one in another town. He called about 3 hours later and said," I got one." Ain't he a nice deacon?
For those who are interested, I passed my real estate test with semi-flying colors.
I am working on a post (or posts )on Luke 13:23..."are there few that be saved?" I'm gonna have to require all readers to wear seat belts. It could get a little rough.
I just broke 1000 hits on this blog. Never mind that 900 of them were me clicking away and then clicking back.
My lovely wife, Jan, went to the mail box a few minutes ago and returned with a nifty little book by John Mac entitled THE QUEST FOR CHARACTER . How did he know that I needed a book on character? Hey, Jan ! Have you been talking to MacArthur?
Tuesday, June 27, 2006
I realize how irresponsible it is for me to be so lax in providing this mighty weapon against spiritual wickedness and non-Chevy products. I have been pretty busy lately, but I plan to do better in the near future.
Hopefully, I will soon be able to post some pictures of the '68 Nova that I recently aquired.
Oh yeah, and I plan to say some nice things about Jesus too.(Note to self: Work on your priorities, dude!)
Saturday, June 17, 2006
So, on Thursday, I wore the tee shirt to school and it created a small stir. I'm not sure if it was all about the shirt. It easily could have had something to do with my manly physique being shown off in a tee shirt, but anyhoo, it got some attention. One person asked, "Is that Latin? What does it mean?" I said," It means after darkness light. It refers to the Reformation." Puzzled look. I said, "It's Christian...." Look of horror! Varoooom! Gone!
Another asked and again I explained and this one said, "Whose are the pictures on the back?" I gave the names and she responded,"I used to be a Lutheran , but now I'm a Methodist." I said, "Oh? That's interesting"(Hoping to find out if the change was for doctrinal reasons, and thereby opening an opportunity for spiritual discussion). To which she responded, "Yeah, the Lutheran church was way across town and the Methodist was just down the street, so we became Methodists." Side note: Apparently in religion as well as real estate it's :LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION.
Another who overheard said, "I'm Christian Science, I think that the problem most people have is that they take the Bible too literally." I said, "Yep, I'm one of 'em." "You are?" "Yep, I preach it verse-by-verse. I take the point of the scriptural passage as the point of my sermon." She said,"One thing I don't do. I don't discuss religion or politics."
Long story short, the Monergism tee shirt didn't make any converts. Maybe next week I will be able to get at least one person to bow his / her head, repeat the 5 solas, and receive John Calvin as their personal theologian.
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
It would be impossible for me to over-emphasize the impact that reading good books has had on me personally and on my ministry. Study and preparation are part and parcel of the gospel ministry. My caution to young men who are about to enter the ministry is: "If God didn"t give you a desire to study, He probably hasn't called you to preach."
There are many authors and books that have radically influenced my life and ministry. The following is a partial list of the books and authors that have been the greatest blessing in my own ministry.
A.W. Tozer-"THE PURSUIT OF GOD". I can trace a spiritual transformation in my life back to this book. It lead me to read every thing I could get by him.
Leonard Ravenhill-"WHY REVIVAL TARRIES"
E.M.Bounds-All his books on prayer.
THE LIFE AND DIARY OF DAVID BRAINERD by Jonathan Edwards.
J.I.Packer-Particularly "KNOWING GOD" and "EVANGELISM AND THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD."
Mark Dever-"9 MARKS OF A HEALTHY CHURCH."
More recently I am being blessed by the writings of C.J.Mahaney.
I haven't read a lot of Calvin other than his commentaries, but I am definitely influenced by many who have been influenced by him.
As I said, this is not an exhaustive list of all the beneficial books I've read, but these are the books and authors that I consider to have been the most helpful. I'm sure that most of you are avid readers also. What are some of the books you consider to be most influential in your life and ministry?
Tuesday, June 06, 2006
St. Augustine is the nation's oldest city and a popular tourist spot. The city was named for... you guessed it! Augustine, bishop of Hippo and one the heroes of those of us who love the doctrines of grace.
On Sunday evening, we went to the Ancient City Baptist Church. We didn't know anything about the church, so we didn't know what to expect. However we were greatly blessed as we heard the pastor, Dr. David Rice,preach an expository sermon on the 31st Psalm.
On Monday morning, we took one of the trolley tours through the old part of the city.At one point we got off the trolley and walked through the Memorial Presbyterian Church. This church was estabished in 1824 and the present building was dedicated to the glory of God on March 16th 1890.
I am always impressed by these old church buidings. The architecture, design, and lay-out say so much about the congregation and their leaders' perception of God as well as their attitude toward worship.
The sanctuary of this particular church is arranged in the shape of a cross. The the pulpit is to the right side while the lecturn (where the Bible is always present and always open, and from which it is read) is in the center, indicating the centrality of the Word of God. These are subtle, or not so subtle indications of the focus of the original planners and builders of this edifice. No expence was spared in their efforts to make it beautiful, for they obviously believed that the God they intended to worship in this place, deserved the very best they could give Him.
Although there was no congregation in attendance on a Monday morning, no choir singing praises, nor was there one reading or preaching the Word; there was no doubt about the purpose for which this building was designed. Just to walk in and look around, you know that this place is meant for the worship of a high and holy God.
This is a far cry from the design of many of our modern church buildings. Some are more reminiscent of a movie theater or a play house than a place of worship. Some congregations build a gymnasium that they use all week as a recreational center. On Sunday they retract the basketball hoops, set out the folding chairs, and bring in the portable pulpit and PRESTO! It's a church! This too speaks volumes about the congregation's view of the worship of God. The testimony of their design and architecture can be boiled down to this: They deserve the best and God gets what's left. It often appears, to me at least, that it is more about pragmatism, seeker friendliness, and great fun than about worshiping the God of the Bible.
I am not so naive as to believe that all congregations that meet in circumstances like those described above are failing to worship God. Nor do I believe that every congregation meeting in a perfectly desingned edifice is truely worshiping God. There is much more to true worship than just the design of the building in which we meet. However, the way we arrange our worship space does say something about us and our view of God.
Saturday, June 03, 2006
How do you like this one Terry?
Saturday, May 27, 2006
Before you ask, no, it isn't mine. I found this picture somewhere else on the internet. At present I don't have a digital camera, so I can't post pictures of my stuff yet. Not only that, but I don't yet know how to scan my photos in. Believe me, ignorance is not bliss.
For those who would say that it is extremely carnal for a pastor to love old cars so much, you'll get no argument from me. All I can say is "O wretched man that I am..."
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
But wait! There's more! After recovering from my initial amazement, and after quietly giving thanks that such wisdom dwelt among men, a response was triggered in my own mind. Almost without thinking, I said:" That's interesting, because I've just been thinking that the more I lay around, the less I am able to accomplish". Now I don't expect my observation to get equal time with Steve's, but it does prove the truth of the proverb:"Iron sharpeneth iron..."(Pro.27:17)
Monday, May 22, 2006
From ch.9v.51 through ch.19v.27, the events and teachings recorded take place as He journeys toward Jerusalem. He knows that this part of His earthly ministry is going to end very soon at Calvary. So, it seems to me that He intensifies the tone of His teaching so that it will have a maximum effect on His hearers.
His teaching in this section is designed to do at least two things: 1.To instruct His true followers.2.To identify the false ones. In order to accomplish that, He sets the standard high and draws a bold, clear, and well-defined dividing line. We all are on one side or the other. Ch.11v.23 states it in unmistakable terms:"He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth." Now that's radical! There is no neutral ground. Nope, none. Not any. Nary a bit.
Jesus demands an all or nothing commitment. He is not teaching, as some mistakenly believe, some higher form of Christianity. It is the ONLY form of Christianity that He taught. Jesus' teachings are not suggestions but commands. We are either endeavoring to obey them as commands or we are actively rebelling against them.There is no middle ground.
Saturday, May 20, 2006
(Luk 9:29) And as he prayed, the fashion of his countenance was altered, and his raiment was white and glistering.
(Luk 9:30) And, behold, there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias:
(Luk 9:31) Who appeared in glory, and spake of his decease which he should accomplish at Jerusalem.
(Luk 9:32) But Peter and they that were with him were heavy with sleep: and when they were awake, they saw his glory, and the two men that stood with him.
(Luk 9:33) And it came to pass, as they departed from him, Peter said unto Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here: and let us make three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias: not knowing what he said.
(Luk 9:34) While he thus spake, there came a cloud, and overshadowed them: and they feared as they entered into the cloud.
(Luk 9:35) And there came a voice out of the cloud, saying, This is my beloved Son: hear him.
(Luk 9:36) And when the voice was past, Jesus was found alone. And they kept it close, and told no man in those days any of those things which they had seen.
(Luk 9:37) And it came to pass, that on the next day, when they were come down from the hill, much people met him.
Lesson #1. God gives mountain-top experiences: Those precious times when His presence is so sweet, His glory is to some degree unveiled , and we get a fresh understanding of His work and ministry.
Lesson #2. Mountain-top experiences are relatively rare. Jesus taught His disciples and revealed His glory in many ways, but as far as the gospel record is concerned, there was never another experience like the one described in these verses.
Lesson #3. Christians can easily be distracted by an emotionally charged experience and begin to focus on prolonging or repeating it.
Peter said,"Master, it is good for us to be here: and let us build three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah:" These words indicate that his focus was already beginning to shift from the manifestation of Jesus' glory to a desire to prolong the experience.
Lesson#4. It's all about Him! Peter was willing to put Jesus first in his tabernacle building proposition. But the cloud came, and the fear, and then the Voice. "This is my beloved son: hear him". He is not to be #1 on our list of important things to be considered in our christian service or worship. He is everything! It's not about the emotional experience, although passion in worship is good. It's not about the other participants or those who help us in worship. It's about Him!
*He is to be the focus of all our preaching.
*Praying is about what He wants more than about what I want.
* He alone is to be the focus of our worship.
*Our witnessing should be about Him, His glory, His holiness, His demands, and the remedy He has provided for man's sin.
Lesson #5. Ministry takes place at the foot of the mountain (v.37). Those to whom we are called upon to minister, will not be on the mountain with us. They are in the lowlands. However, the One who is with us on the mountain, leads us as we minister in the valley.
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Luke 12:5 But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him(God), which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, fear him.
So, here it is folks. The unvarnished truth: The God of scripture and of Jesus' own teaching is a God of wrath. Yes, He is also a God of love. That too is plainly taught in scripture(1Jn.4:8). The problem is that there are many preaching that truth while so few are preaching this truth. This post is my stumbling attempt to help give equal time to the absolutely essential teaching of the wrath of God.
The scriptures are filled with examples of God's wrath. His judgement and wrath begin to be seen very early in the biblical record. In Gen. ch.3, because of their sin, God put the sentence of death on Adam and Eve, cursed the earth, and expelled them from the garden of Eden.
Later, because of the corruption of the race, God, by the flood, destroyed both man and beast from the earth.(Except for those within the Ark)
Again in Gen.19 His wrath is poured out on Sodom. He visits His anger on Israel's Egyptian oppressors by plagues and in the Red sea. He opens up the earth to swallow up rebellious Korah and his gang. He even severely judges His beloved king David because of sin. No sin nor sinner ever goes unpunished.
Not only do we see examples of God's wrath in scripture, but we also see warnings of God's wrath. Rom.2:1-11; Heb.10:26-31, Just to name a couple.
God's word clearly teaches that those outside of a saving relationship with Him through Christ, are presently under wrath. Not that they will be under wrath at some later time, but right now, they are living, every moment, on the brink of Divine retribution(Jn.3:18,36). It's going to happen. Divine wrath is going to fall. It may be by sudden death, or by suicide,or by an overdose, or a natural disaster, but it will happen. Jonathan Edward's text comes to mind (Deut.32:35 their foot shall slide in due time...). They will not only be cut down physically, but
they will immediately begin to experience the fiery indignation of His anger.
Yet when it happens people are shocked as if they had no warning or opportunity to prepare. They act as if they had no idea that such a tragedy could befall someone so near and dear to them. How could God do such a thing? Then we as pastors in seeking to offer words of comfort, are tempted to try to explain or even try to defend God's honor against the suggestion that He has been somehow unjust in allowing it to happen.
Here is what we need to remember at those times: 1st of all, God has never made a secret of the fact that He is" ...angry with the wicked every day."(Ps.7:11b)or that their"...judgement...lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not."(2Pet.2:3). He has sufficiently given warning.
Neither have His faithful ministers tried to hide the fact that the disobedient are in danger of wrath. We continually proclaim it. The problem is that our people are not hearing us or they don't believe it.
In the 2nd place, we need to remember and report that wrath is the natural result of God's justice, not a violation of it. His actions don't need defending, His truth needs declaring. As preachers of the 'good news',we must also faithfully declare the 'bad news' that those who live a disobedient unrepentant life are every moment in danger of wrath.
Every breath, every heartbeat, and every step outside saving faith in Christ is one breath, one heartbeat, one step closer toward the full outpouring of His wrath.
Jesus, on the cross, absorbed in His own body the righteous wrath of God in the stead of His people. But the overwhelming, overflowing, horrifying wrath of God is reserved for all those who reject His saving mercy.
Every idle word spoken, every thought that does not acknowledge God, every meal eaten in unthankfulness, every work of self-righteousness,or for self-advancement is an act of war against the Ruler of the universe(Pro.21:4). Day by day and moment by moment the unsaved, simply by their everyday activities, are storing up more and more wrath(Rom.2:5). For those who will be the objects of His wrath, an early death would be a mercy, for their guilt is being multiplied exponentially every moment.
In conclusion, what is the proper response to such a frightening truth?
If you are a Christian, get busy! Our lost friends and loved ones require our most valiant efforts of prayer, and witness now. Tommorow may be too late.
If you are not a Christian, run to Jesus! And in humble repentance, plead for mercy. Mercy, oh, how I love that word.
Friday, May 12, 2006
A. I am still an independent baptist in that I pastor (or pester depending on which of my members you talk to) an independent baptist church.
B. I have not 'recovered' nor am I 'recovering' from the fundamentals of the Faith. Rather I am daily coming to a deeper understanding and love for the fundamental doctrines and bible truth.
C.I am still a baptist. I can love, appreciate, fellowship with, and profit from anyone ,who is doctrinally sound on the basics, no matter what his denomination. But I am a baptist by conviction.
Then, from what am I 'recovering'? I am recovering from some of the doctrines, but mostly from the attitudes of some (not all) of my IFB brethren.
- The bless God, you'd better listen to me attitude."I have all the answers,so you don't need to think for yourself".
- The if you question me, you're a compromiser attitude.".The only reason others don't preach it like I do is that they are sissy crowd pleasers".
- The I can't fellowship with anyone who doesn't see every detail exactly like I do attitude. "And even though you seem to believe just like me, I'm gonna keep my eye on you because you might say or do something that I don't agree with . Or you might fellowship with somebody that I don't agree with, and then I'll have to tell everybody what a compromiser you are. Thereby exalting myself as the Lone Ranger of Rightness.
- The I never struggle, doubt, or fail attitude. "If you do, then you probably aren't saved".
- The Go ahead. Get mad and leave the church attitude. "You look better going than you do coming anyway".
I could go on and on. Like others, I could tell some horror stories as well as some humorous ones, but I'll have to save them for another time.
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
I am a newcomer to computers, the internet and blogging. You will also quickly detect that I am new to writing. Apart from sermon prep, I haven't done much of it. I started this blog in part to force myself to articulate my thoughts and theology by writing them out. So this is going to require a new discipline for me . I am greatly influenced by superior bloggers such as:Phil Johnson, Frank Turk, James Spurgeon,Tom Ascol and many others of this stripe. My two favorite blogs, of course, are PASTOR STEVE WEAVER'S BLOG and DOXOBLOGY. These two young men are the smartest, most articulate, fervent, anoited, cutting edge, doctrinally sound to be found anywhere on the internet.(Is my prejudice showing?) I confess that I am not in the same league with these men that I have named either educationally or spiritually. However I do occasionally have something to say and I intend to try to say it coherently on this blog. Have mercy on me and try not to judge me too harshly if I fail in this attempt. I feel a little uncomfortable saying "I" so much, but in this introductory post I think I need to kinda 'splain myself and where I'm coming from. Theologically I'm a Calvinist. I pastor a small independent baptist church in Titusville Fl. where I preach verse-by-verse through books of the bible. I am not into the KJVonly debate, however I do only preach from the KJV. I can readily identify with guys like James Spurgeon and RegularJoe in that I also am a recovering IFBer. I guess I never really fit in with them, though, and was often viewed with a certain amount of suspicion. Although I tried to be accepted, I just didn't seem to fit in. For one thing I never beieved in nor did I practice Hyles style easy-believism. I was always a little too close to Calvinism, although I hadn't come to a full understanding of the doctrines of grace. I always have believed that the church's primary purpose is not "soul winning" but to worship and glorify God. Please don't mis-understand this last statement. I believe in the great commission.My family and I spent a total of 5 years on the mission field in Old Mexico. I just believe that evangelism must be done in a scriptural way and that it is to be done for the glory of God. The focus is on God and not the "soul". By the way, can you tell that I don't know how to make this thing do paragraphs? Now, you might ask "why is this blog named AMAZING GRACE AND OLD CHEVYS ?" The answer is simple. I love the doctrines of grace and am still, after 28 years, amazed that God would extend His saving grace to me. I also love old Chevys. I like to drive 'em, I like to see 'em, I like to buy 'em, I like to sell 'em. I like 'em. What more can I say? If John Calvin were alive today he would say "Old Chevys are the bomb".