Monday, July 27, 2009

Example of Christian legalism

The story below is an example of how some Christians can twist the concept of "perseverance" into using the ten commandments as a "rule of life" that appears to put them right back under the law after claiming to be saved by grace.

This is too often found among the reformed.

Paul teaches us that Christians who insist on requiring such "works" of the law as circumcision are denying the one saving work of Christ. "Behold, I Paul say unto you that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing." Galatians 5:2.

The Scottish folk in the story below don't believe they are saved by observing what they see as the "Christian Sabbath," however that observation has become so much a tradition that they are insisting everyone respect and observe it. They themselves have become so like the pharisees that any witness to Christ their Sabbath observance was supposed to be has failed miserably as they try to force it on others.

Scottish island's sacred Sunday under threat
July 18th, 2009 @ 11:38am
By BEN McCONVILLE Associated Press Writer

ULLAPOOL, Scotland (AP) - An unholy row has broken out over a ferry company's decision to sail on Sunday between a remote Scottish island and the mainland.

Residents on the Isle of Lewis who keep a strict Sabbath _ no television, no housework, no shopping _ are angry that the Caledonian MacBrayne ferry company is to start running services between Stornoway, the island's capital, and Ullapool on the Scottish mainland.

The company, known as CalMac, says it has no choice because not to run the service would potentially put it in breach of European laws on equality. Presbyterian residents on the predominantly Gaelic-speaking island say the service is threatening both their faith and their lifestyle.

"This is an affront to the wishes and religious beliefs of the people of the island and CalMac has run roughshod over us," said John Roberts, spokesman for the Lord's Day Observance Society.

"The Sunday ferry service is a direct threat to this way of life which stands for Christian beliefs, the Bible and the word of God. We'll end up with Sundays like they are in the rest of the U.K. or the U.S. where it is just, go to church on Sunday morning and the rest of the day is yours."....

On the Net:
Lochbroom Free Church,

Friday, July 24, 2009

About predestination in the Bible -

an excerpt from "A Cry for Help" by C.C. Morris with the Primitive Baptist Church --absolute predestinarian. For full essay, go to

"...Then, after floundering around in spiritual waters far too deep for him, the young writer finally cries out for help: "Where is it taught that God has predestinated anyone to hell? Or that He has predestinated all things good and evil that comes to pass?" At last, luckily for him, we can welcome the opportunity to help him.

As for his former question, "Where is it taught that God has predestinated anyone to hell?" We suggest he might start with 1 Peter 2.8: "...a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed." While there, he might answer this: When did God appoint them to stumbling disobedience, if not by eternal predestination?

He might then try, "But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption (2 Peter 2.12)," and while there he should answer: When did God determine He would make them to be taken and destroyed? In time, or by eternal decree?

Next, he might try, "...there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ (Jude 4)," and answ er: Is not being "before of old ordained to this condemnation" the same as being predestinated to hell?

And after that, he might try this text: "And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness (2 Thessalonians 2.11-12)." If he does, we'd like to hear his answer to this question: When did God determine He would send them strong delusion that they should believe a lie and all be damned? Lately? Or was it eternally predestinated?

And he might try these texts: "As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated...Therefore hath He mercy on whom He will have mercy, and whom He will He hardeneth...Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour (Romans 9.13, 18, 21)?" Just exactly when did God determine He would hate Esau, harden Pharaoh, and make others vessels unto dishonour—was it in time, or in His eternal counsel and by His decree of predestination?

As for his latter question, "[Where is it taught] that He has predestinated all things good and evil that comes [sic] to pass?" (Since the young writer was so good to share his knowledge of the Greek with us, perhaps we can bear with his faulty English.)

May we suggest he might find an answer to this question in such passages as, "Who is he that saith, and it cometh to pass, when the Lord commandeth it not? Out of the mouth of the most High proceedeth not evil and good (Lamentations 3.37-38)?" "Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? shall there be evil in a city, and the Lord hath not done it? (Amos 3.6)" "But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good...(Genesis 50.20)." "And if the prophet be deceived when he hath spoken a thing, I the Lord have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand upon him, and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel (Ezekiel 14.9)." "The tabernacles of robbers prosper, and they that provoke God are secure; into whose hand God bringeth abundantly (Job 12.6)." "I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things (Isaiah 45.7)." "The Lord hath made all things for Himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil (Proverbs 16.4)."

The young Conditionalist might compare "The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the Lord (Proverbs 16.1)" with the Psalmist's prayer, "Incline not my heart to any evil thing, to practise wicked works with men that work iniquity...(Psalm 141.4)."

And he might compare "And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil (Matthew 6.13)" with "Then was Jesus led up of the spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil (Matthew 4 .1)." By whose Spirit was Jesus led?

And he might ponder, "Remember the former things of old: for I am God and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure (Isaiah 46.9-10)." In his miasmatic meditations he might answer whether or not this text includes the evil things that were not yet done. It is important that he should answer this question, since God and Isaiah did not qualify that phrase with words like "good" or "evil."

Then, when he has done that, he might think upon this: "The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand." Has the young Conditionalist considered that, by observing whatever comes to pass, one can see what God has eternally thought?

Before he is done with our help, the lucky young writer should address at least two more scriptures: "...For the Lord of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? and His hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back (Isaiah 14.24-27)?" And, "...being predestinated according to the purpose of Him who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will (Ephesians 1.11)." ...

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

How then should we live?

From a chapter in "Pauline Dispensationalism" by Miles Stanford found at

FURTHER POSITIONAL HISTORY -- Positionally freed from the Adamic life through my death unto sin in the Lord Jesus, the Father was at liberty to identify the essential me with His Son, and in His resurrection I was recreated alive unto the Father in Him. When He arose, as "the beginning of the [new] creation of God" (Rev. 3:14), I arose with Him in "newness of life"--a totally new creation (2 Cor. 5:17).

When the Lord Jesus, now Head of the new creation, the Church, ascended to the right hand of His Father, He took me with Him. The Father, having re-created me in His Son, raised me up and made me sit together in heavenly places in Him. "And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus" (Eph. 2:6). Abide above!

I was positionally separated by death via the Cross from the first Adam, to be recreated in union with the Last=2 0Adam in His resurrection and ascension. Old Adamic things positionally passed away in the death of Calvary. In my condition, they are (slowly) passing away as I grow spiritually. Actually, finally, they will totally and eternally pass away at my death or at the Rapture--whichever comes first. "Even so, come Lord Jesus"!

There I am in my glorious position, "hidden with Christ in God" (Col. 3:3). In the Lord Jesus, I am accepted in the Beloved, complete in Him, entirely sanctified in Him, perfect in Him. With that position, who can question his unconditional, eternal security?!

All of that, and much more, has been held in spiritual escrow for me ever since the One who is my Life ascended to the right hand of the Father. "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ" (Eph. 1:3).

All had to be completed positionally before a single Christian and the Church could come into being, because Christianity is founded upon and springs from the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ. "And ye are complete in Him, who is the Head of all principality and power" (Col. 2:10).

THE CONDITION FACTOR -- Born into the world in the life and image of the first Adam, I grew up a condemned sinner, "dead in trespasses and sins" (Eph. 2:1). In His foreordained time and purpose the Father called me, and by His grace and the Spirit's conviction of sin, I responded in unconditional faith--responsibly accepting the Lord Jesus Christ as my own Saviour.

At that moment the Holy Spirit, by His indweliing, brought me the life of the ascended Lord Jesus Christ to be my Christian life. Then and there I was placed in my position as a new creation in the Last Adam. Nevertheless, Adamic life and nature continued to indwell my body of mortal flesh.

In the Spirit's time I came to realize the positional truths in the Word concerning me--from Romans 5:12 on throughout Paul’s Church Epistles. I saw that I had judicially died unto sin at the Cross, crucified with the Lord Jesus (Gal. 2:20).

In time, and plenty of that, I learned via Romans Seven not to struggle against the fleshly life of Adam within, but to count by faith upon the positional truth of the finished work of the Cross. "For in that He died, He died unto sin once; but in that He liveth, He liveth unto God. Likewise, reckon ye also yourselves to have died indeed unto sin, but to be alive unto God in Jesus C hrist our Lord" (Rom. 6:10,11).

As I reckon my new self positionally dead unto sin, the Holy Spirit progressively applies that finished position to my growing condition. I experience, step by step, the freedom from the power and reign of indwelling Adamic sin that was wrought on Calvary. My condition begins to conform to its source, my position in Christ.

Likewise, reckoning upon my position as "alive unto God in Christ Jesus," the Holy Spirit centers my heart and mind upon the One who is my Christian Life. As I behold Him by means of the Word, in personal fellowship and worship, the Spirit of Christ develops that completed life to manifest the "fruit of the Spirit." With ever increasing growth I am slowly conformed to the image of the Son.

"But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord" (2 Cor. 3:18)

(The following is specific to Mile's dispensational beliefs...)
At the Rapture I will receive my renewed body, like unto His glorious body. Then, and not until then, my body of mortal flesh will be instantly transformed into my spiritual body. The old Adamic man will finally be eradicated, and I will be in eternal condition what has been my position ever since my death and resurrection in Him at Calvary--yes, ever since my Father formed me in His heart in eternity past.

The question remains: what of these great liberating positional truths have you learned from the Church--whether it be through your local Bible church, or elsewhere?

From nearly fifty years of close observation, I would say that your chances are just about one in a thousand. If the leadership in the sound Church realized who and where they are in the glorified Lord Jesus Christ, would they stop at Romans 5:11, unable to really enter into Romans 5:12 and beyond? Would they be OT- and Synoptics-oriented, holding the Church to the earthly level of Israel and her law?

Would they substitute the synoptic "Gospel of the kingdom" for Paul's exclusive "glorious Gospel"? Would they subject members of the heavenly Body of the glorified Lord Jesus Christ to Israel's earthly New Covenant, or her Mosaic and Kingdom law system--that to which the Christian has died? "For through the Law I died to the Law, that I might live to God" (Gal. 2:19).

This is the present-day tragedy of the Church, settled in the great black hole between Romans 5:11, and 12.

"If [since] ye, then, be risen with Christ, seek those things above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set you affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God" (Col. 3:1-3).

Monday, July 20, 2009

American Catholic split identified in NCR

While describing some of the aspects of the pope’s recent encyclical, John Allen Jr. with the National Catholic Reporter offered the following on what constitutes the current divide among Roman Catholics is America:

“…Statements of principle, however, often fail to account for the gap between what we say and what we do. In that sense, Caritas in Veritate amounts to a direct challenge to the sociology of American Catholicism.

"Both at the grass roots and among the chattering classes, the American church is often described as split between its pro-lifers and its peace-and-justice contingent. More accurately, it's divided between those who see Catholic teaching as a useful tool to support their partisan preferences, whatever they may be, and those for whom the faith comes first and secular politics second.

…. (As a footnote, if I had the authority to decree a reading assignment for every Catholic in America, it would be Bill Bishop's 2008 book The Big Sort: Why the Clustering of Like-Minded America is Tearing Us Apart. His observations about broad trends in American society can be applied almost point-for-point to the internal life of the church.)

"Thus the question implicitly posed by Benedict's encyclical: Can the church in this country develop a new way of "breathing with both lungs," bringing its pro-life and peace-and-justice energies into greater alignment? Or are we fated to continue the present pattern of "Big Sort Catholicism"? ...

(Blogmaster's note:) We are headed for :"Big Sort Catholicism" that Allen didn't come near touching by identifying "pro-lifers vs. peace and justice contingent." The National Catholic Reporter, which clearly represents the so-called "peace and justice contingent," (cafeteria Catholics--pick and choose your doctrine) pulled out all the stops for Obama to insist that people can be proabortion and remain Roman Catholic. What baloney.

They don't want to know what the Bible says about abortion either. I side with the prolifers on this one (although I am no longer a Roman Catholic myself) and I know why the traditonal and sedevacanists Catholics are growing and will continue to grow. They realize that once you concede that murder is permissible at any level of life, it is permissible at all levels of life from infants to the elderly. Aside from belief in the true Gospel that Christ fully won (secured) the salvation of all who believe in him (which most Roman Catholics refuse to believe)...there is no issue more important than respect for life at all levels.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

From today's first reading

I will appoint shepherds for them who will shepherd them so that they need no longer fear and tremble; and none shall be missing, says the LORD. Jeremiah 23:6

Friday, July 17, 2009

Arminianism gospel defined by B.B. Warfield

(Arminiansm teaches:) "God saves no one--He only makes salvation possible for men. Whether (salvation) becomes actual or not depends absolutely on their (men's) act. It is only by their act that it is made possible for God to save them." --Warfield -- Reformed leader

A Christian is more than a person minus sins

"A sinner minus his sins would not be a Christian; for salvation is more than subtraction, it is addition. 'I give them eternal life.'" --Lewis Chafer - dispensationalist leader

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Is Catholicism really good enough, mom?

My mom, a Roman Catholic modern church worshipper, still says if it was good enough for her mom and dad it is good enough for her. Really? How sad.

The following is what was good enough for our ancestors…is it really good enough for us in the eyes of the Christ we say we worship? Surely not for people who have read and believe his word--the Bible.

Yet Roman Catholics are taught that each time they receive the body and blood of our Lord at Holy Communion they are giving their ascent and approval to all the teachings of the Church’s Magisterium. That means they agree to go along with all the following formal teachings of that same Magisterium (which is the pope and those bishops in union with him). In fact, they are told that not to do so is heresy, which is defined as...

Heresy consists in a pertinacious denial of doubt of a Catholic truth (c. 1325, 1917 Code of Canon Law) and it severs one completely from the Roman Catholic Church (Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum). Which means you lose salvation for refusing to believe all of the church's teachings.

That's not all. There are many more required-for-salvation Roman Catholic teachings, here's just a few...

The Magisterium (the pope and the bishops in union with him) of the Roman Catholic Church is free from all error – Pope Leo XIII

All prayer with the heretics is condemned to hell. – Pope Pius IX

Whoever is separated from the Church is united to an adulteress – Pope Leo XIII

Only Catholics can be considered Christians – Pope Pius VI

Heretics such as Protestants, Jews, and Muslims are completely separated from the Body of Christ – Pope Eugene IV

Catholics must anathematize (condemn to hell) all heretics – Pope St. Martin 1

It is not against the will of God to burn heretics – Pope Leo X

Protestants have not the Trinity, life or salvation. – Pope Leo XIII

Outside the Church there is no true worship of God – Pope Gregory XVI

Non-Catholic worship is a disgrace and forbidden – Pope Clement V

The State must forbid non-Catholic religions – Pope Pius IX

To be Christian, one must believe in the Papacy – Pope Pius VI

One is not the child of God the Father, unless he takes the Church for his mother – Leo XIII

Whoever is outside the Catholic Church is not our brother. – Pope Leo XII

Outside the Church there is absolutely no salvation. – Pope Leo X

Heretics are the gates of Hell – Pope Vigilius

Ecumenism can meet with no kind of approval among Catholics – Pope Pius XI

To foster ecumenism is to reject the true religion – Pope Pius XI

Civil authority must be subject to the Church’s authority – Pope Boniface VIII

Those who die in mortal sin are destined for Hell – Pope Benedict XII

Only Catholics worship God – Pope Gregory XVI

The Catholic Church condemns all contrary opinions – Pope Eugene IV

One of the things that shows how different the official Roman Catholic Church of today is from its traditional Roman Catholic past is the treatment of Jews. While I thank God that we treat Jews with the human dignity they deserve, should that include praying with them though it is plainly known that they reject Jesus, the Son of the living God and God in the flesh? Especially since the Bible clearly warns Christians against such fellowship?

Yet, as we have all seen, the popes have joined Jews in prayer in synagogues and praised them as their “elder brothers.” This despite the fact that the church still must uphold the teachings of former popes which soundly condemned to hell all Jews who reject Jesus as the Son of God.

Lately the popes, following the lead of Vatican II, have clearly taught and acted to the contrary of church teaching. No wonder traditionalists are gaining steam.

Here’s an example from Pope Hardrian I: “Jews are anathema (cursed--condemned to hell) from God, completely cut off from His communion and splendor. DC: 168 (Decrees of the Ecumenical Councils, edited by Norman P. Tanner)

Think about it. We're talking about teachings that the Roman Catholic Church itself teaches are irreformable--unchangable. They have made their errors unchangable. How very sad. --Bro. Jim