The Carpenter's Chapel (5)

Discussion in 'Free-For-All Archives' started by Jim1999, Jul 23, 2004.

  1. Jim1999

    Jim1999
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    Welcome to the foot of the cross where all men, women and children are equal, and the blood of Christ is sufficient for all, and effectual for some, even those who are called unto His grace.

    Cheers, and God bless us each one,

    Jim
     
  2. Watchman

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    Saturday July 24, 2004

    "And now, Israel, what does the Lord require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep the commandments of the Lord and His statutes which I command you this day for your good." (Deuteronomy 10:12-13)

    This sounds simple enough, and the people of Israel readily agreed with Moses to do these things Modern religious liberals cite such a lifestyle as all that is necessary to please God. But the rub is this: Who dares claim to "walk in all His ways, and to love Him, and to serve the Lord his God with all his heart?" Anyone who make such a claim would be breaking one of God's commandments right there: the one against lying.

    Solomon reached a conclusion of like kind: "Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and Keep His commandments, For this is man's all." (Ecclesiastes 12:13) Indeed so, but who can "keep His commandments"? "For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all." (James 2:10)

    Another favorite verse of liberals is Micah 6:8: "He has shown you O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God?" Yes, but the problem is that, "For there is not a just man on earth who does good And does not sin." (Ecclesiastes 7:20)

    But there was one such man! The Lord Jesus Christ "did no sin," yet was willing to "bare our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness." (1Peter 2:22,24). What we could never do, He has done for us. Now, through faith in the finished work of Christ, we have been set free from the bondage of sin and can indeed, "have (our) fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life."
    (Romans 6:22)

    NOTE: I'm late! Trouble with dialing in this morning. There are three laws you know: God's Law, Man's Law and Murphy's Law (Anything that can go wrong will!) But it's straightened out now.
     
  3. Dan Todd

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    Charles, I'm glad you put Murphy in his place - because I enjoyed the devotional!
     
  4. Watchman

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    Sunday July 25, 2004

    "Now therefore, I pray, if I have found grace in your sight, show me now your way, that I may know You and that I may find grace in Your sight. And consider that this nation is Your people."
    (Exodus 33:13)

    Moses, the man of God was surely one of the greatest men who ever lived. He was the leader of a great nation, he received the tablets of the law from God, and he compiled and wrote the Pentateuch. It was said that "there arose not a prophet since in Israel like unto Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face. (Deuteronomy 34:10). Yet, "the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth." (Numbers 12:3)

    It was such a man as this who made two remarkable requests of God. The first, as above: "show me now Your way." The second, just a moment later, "show me your glory." (Exodus 33:18)

    These were not selfish requests. Moses desired the way of the Lord on behalf of his people. God answered this request with the gracious promise: "My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest." (Exodus 33:14)

    But then he also asked to see the glory of God. So God placed Moses "in a cleft of the rock," covering him with His hand as His glory passed by, allowing him to see the remnants of His glory, as it were (Exodus 33:22-23), since he could not have endured any more. With such a vision of God's glory, Moses was able to lead the Israelite multitude for forty years in a terrible wilderness, transforming them from a mob of slaves into God's chosen nation, ready to bring God's word, and God's Son into the world.

    We also can see His way and His glory. Jesus said, "I am the way" (John 14:6). Then He prayed: "Father, I will that they also, whom you have given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory." (John 17:24)
     
  5. Dan Todd

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    I once heard Theodore Epp preach day after day on the life of Moses. He and I echo your thought that Moses was a great man!

    Thank you Charles
     
  6. Jim1999

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    Monday, July 26, 2004

    Galatians 1:17

    "Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me; but I went into Arabia, and returned again unto Damascus."

    This verse stuck with me this morning like fish hooks in the mouth. As a matter of fact, I wrote Galatians 1:17 before I knew what the verse was. To get the purpose for this verse, I had to back up to verse 15: "But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by his grace..."

    Now Paul was defending his apostleship, but it realy had nothing to do with apostleship. It had to do with discipleship. Long before we get a title, we get an adoption. We become a child of the King.

    Paul could have related his status before all the apostles. He could have called witnesses to prove he had special powers as an apostle. But he calls upon his testimony in the Lord Jesus Christ. This is front and foremost to Paul. Paul went into the quiet of the desert, the solitude, a place to be alone with God. So many others before Paul went into the desert and came out new people. Even our Lord Jesus.

    Paul decided the solitude of the desert was far better than the empty sugars of desserts. He got his theology from God, and he even had a great witness for this; the Lord's brother, James.

    I'll be brief. Let us take time to experience the desert. Nevermind what others believe, or what others have written. Let's find our authority in the Lord Jesus Christ, and get on with it, as mighty witnesses to lost world all around us.

    Lord help me to not only find the time, but make the time, to meet You in your desert, that I may come away with Your authority, in my life.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  7. following-Him

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    Thank you Jim,

    God Bless

    Sheila
     
  8. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    Tuesday, 27th July, 2004

    After Talkative’s departure Christian and Faithful have an encouraging meeting with Evangelist who encourages them along their way. He warns them that trials are yet to come and that they must be ready and prepared for those trial.

    Then, our two pilgrims approach the next place on their journey, a place with which far too many of God’s pilgrims are familiar. The place? Vanity Fair.

    Before we actually enter the gates of Vanity Fair lets us pause for a moment to see what the bible says about vanity.

    All of the Ecclesiastes verse remind us that everything under the sun is vanity. It really is all in vain and that is the reason we are told that we are to set our affections on things above and not on things on the earth.

    This morning, I want examine one particular aspect of vanity that Bunyan, and indeed the Word of God points out.

    Isaiah 40v17 describes the nations as compared to the Lord – “All nations are before him are as nothing; and they are counted to him as nothing, and vanity.” Sometimes as Christians, especially American Christians we are guilty of mixing nationalism with spirituality and the lines can become blurred. God is not an American any more than He is Canadian, French, Irish, German, or any other nationality. Back in verse 15 Isaiah said that the “nations are as a drop in the bucket” yet we can become so focused on what is “good for our country” that we forget that God is nationless and that He died for all the people of the world. Nations are vanity, empty, and nothingness to God. God raises up nations and brings them down for His purpose, they are indeed as a drop in the bucket. Do we see our own nations as “drops in the bucket?”

    Remember – all nations before God are counted as nothing and vanity. God has no obligation to bless America or any other land. Do you agree with God that all the nations are as “drops in a bucket”?

    Where does your nationality come in relation to your relationship with the Lord? Would you be willing to give up your citizenship if that is what was required to serve God in a foreign land? Would you be willing to give your life to carry the gospel to a people who were are war with your own nation? Are you willing even to leave your land to serve God in another land?

    I fear that Nationalism Street is one part of Vanity Fair where too many Christians spend their time. Our true citizenship is in heaven!
     
  9. Jim1999

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    Yet still, we must remind ourselves not to be so heavenly minded that we are of no earthly value. We are here for a reason; to please God and to serve Him, yet we are our neighbours keeper. So, we become a nation within a nation, and ultimately we will be the nation of God; heaven.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  10. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    No doubt Bro Jim and I agree completely. There must be a balance, and I think that, especially during election years, we can get thrown out of balance.
     
  11. Dan Todd

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    Wasn't on BB at all on Monday - on just a few minutes today.

    Jim - Would that we could all experience the "Backside Desert Bible Institute" for three years as Paul did.

    Roger - I believe that we all to often think that God won't let America go down the drain. But truth be told - America is only a half step away from being whooped with a great big stick - for her sin against God (abortion and homosexuality are the two greatest American sins that come to mind).

    Thanks to both of you!
     
  12. Jim1999

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    The best plans of mice and men, thwarted only by the plans of God.

    This morning, at half five, I wish to announce, the early demise of my monitor. Hence, herewith is notice that I will be unable to submit my devotional on time, but should be operational later to-day, DV. I am typing this on wife's computer and I can barely see the monitor. My head is weaving and bobbing more than the fishing float above a huge Bass dipping and diving on a hook.

    Cheers, see you soon,

    Jim
     
  13. Watchman

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    Gentlemen, I too have been away from posting and I enjoyed both of your devotionals. I will second Dan's reply here, only add one more thing that I think is the most serious error in regards to America, and let me add ANY country you are in:
    Like the Church of Ephesus we have left our first love. This country was founded by men of faith and we (as a country) have departed from that.
     
  14. Jim1999

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    Wednesday, July 28, 2004

    Galatians 2

    “Then fourteen years after I went up to again Jerusalem with Barnabas, and tok
    Titus with me also....”

    Paul has been giving his testimony in both chapters one and two. Most often this is
    the best witness we have to offer. When people reason against us, it is next to
    impossible to reason with them. They will not hear theological nor philosophical
    reason. Give your testimony. They may doubt what you say, but it is an experience
    based in truth. They may find your testimony incredible, but isn’t it? Paul was
    dealing with a bunch of believers who had discovered another gospel. They had
    embraced Jesus as Saviour, but zealously embraced extras and made those extras
    part of the gospel. Paul says, look at my life. I came from persecuting the church,
    the believers. I have come full circles and now tell you about what this Jesus has
    done in my life. See where I have been. See what I have done, and what’s more, see
    what this same Jesus has done in and through me. He gives his own testimony.

    There was an American philosopher who taught that Jesus did not exist in history
    and that his life was simple a copy of other Eastern religions who also had a
    “Jesus”. The names changed, but the concept was the same. We cannot argue on
    this point. There is an element of truth in history. Fortunately, few have followed
    his teachings. Where fact separates from the lack of historical document is the
    personal experience of Jesus over the dead gods presented in other religions. Far too
    many down through history have experienced the Christ in life changing situations.
    Personal testimony does not give way to theory, but reinforces truth. We cannot
    always demonstrate the fact that God exists, but we can experience that truth in
    fact. We give our personal testimony. Paul is doing just that in Galatians. He goes
    on to write: “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ
    liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son
    of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” (2:20)...Again, personal
    testimony.

    I taught the Philosophy of Religion for 25 years. It was my job to relate other
    religions to Christianity. It was my job to argue the facts. I can understand what
    some are saying about reason and faith, and I can put into perspective historical
    facts, but I cannot reason the work that was done in me through Jesus Christ. This
    work contradicts all that I, as a mortal being, would seek after. What settles the
    issue for me and for my students? My personal testimony that Jesus has made me a
    new creation in His death and resurrection. No other religion on earth and in history
    can make this claim. We may follow precepts and examples, but they all come short
    on personal experience. The soul is transformed by the works of Christ. It defies
    reason.

    My friends, never sell short your personal experience with Jesus Christ. I have
    heard theologians and Christian make little of experience. They make grand
    statements about God doing everything and make us passive creatures who have
    little choice. I am as Calvinist as the next, and perhaps more than many, but I will
    never sell short the fact that Christ has created in us choice. Now it is up to us to
    make a choice, and this is in our personal witness that Christ has done a good work
    in us and made us new creations in Himself. Paul does this in Galatians. His
    personal experience in Christ is his witness to truth. Let the same be ours.

    Lord, help us, each one, to experience You afresh each day and each moment that
    our lamp will always glow and our wicks never grow short.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  15. Dan Todd

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    Thank you Jim.

    As long as our experience is based on the truth of God's Word - it speaks volumes.

    But when experience contradicts the truth of God's word - it isn't worth a plug nickel!

    I agree with your thoughts on arguing with reason - we often win the battle but lose the war. We may put an unbeliever in his place with out learned arguments - and drive him from our precious Savior!
     
  16. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    Thursday, 29th July, 2004

    Vanity Fairs’ history is given, than a description of some of the sections of it. Let us move on however, to read about the entry of our Pilgrim’s to the city.

    Vanity Fair is clearly a picture of the world. We not a few things about Christian and Faithful and how the relate to Vanity Fair.

    First, they looked different from the world. This is not a rant of clothing standards, but when the world sees us they should know at first glance that we are different from the world. Our walk, our talk, our treatment of others, and many other things should mark us as “out of place” in the world. We are to be that “peculiar people, zealous of good works.”

    Secondly, the spoke differently from the people of the city. Christian and Faithful spoke of heavenly things and the things of God. This was something the people of the city could not at first understand. For, “had they know of it they would not have crucified our Lord.”

    Thirdly, and the one that gave the sellers of the town the most fun, was the attitude of Christian and Faithful toward their wares. “they cared not so much as to look upon them; and if they called upon them to buy, they would put their fingers in their ears, and cry, ‘Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity;‘” Bunyan recorded twopassages – Psalm 119v37 “Turn away my eyes from beholding vanities; and quicken me in thy way” and Philippians 3v19-20 “Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.) For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:”. We might add Colossians 3v1-2 “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.” And 2 Corinthians 4v18 “While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”

    How the men of Vanity Fair mocked as these godly men turned away from those things which appeal to natural man! Every year as I read through Pilgrims Progress my heart is smitten when I read this passage. How often to the wares of Vanity Fair appeal to my eyes? How seldom do It run my eyes away from these vanities to look heavenward. Too often there is a lingering look or a backward glance at the vanities of the world.

    Lord, help us today to look away and “put our fingers in our ears” to the vanities of this world!
     
  17. Watchman

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    Thanks Roger. What God offers is much better, and you can't beat the price!
    "Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.
    Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? and your labor for that which satisfieth not? hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness." (Is. 55: 1-2)
     
  18. Dan Todd

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    Thank you Roger - we need to have our eyes upon the Lord - totally and only!
     
  19. Jim1999

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    Friday, July 30, 2004

    Galatians 3

    "O foolish Galatians..."

    Notice that Paul now calls these people by name, "Galatians". He has moved from "brethren". Imagine your pastor, standing the pulpit Sunday morning, and saying, "O foolish congregation..."

    Paul is not attacking Galatian intelligence, but rather their spiritual folly. He says these Galatians were witnesses to Christ's crucifixion and ultimate demonstration of love, and yet they have foolishly departed from the gospel. This is te sermon that could very well be preached in many churches to-day.

    The Galatian church was not a small, insignificant assembly. So there are many churches that have flourished in many things to-day and achieved great numbers. This physical growth is not always the evidence of spiritual maturity. A popular pastor, fancy programs, good and decent people can all build numbers. I have seen deep spirituality in some very small congregations, and very shallow dedication in larger ones. I am generalizing and cannot place this cloud over all large churches, but so often it is true. Paul gives ample warning here. "O foolish Galatians."

    Paul moves from his own experience to the Galatians personal experience, and they have come up short. His testimony has been consistent; theirs has wavered. He does not say they have fallen away from salvation, but they have been swayed by additions. They have decided that the Law comes into play as part of their salvation.

    Here is a lesson for us in modernity. We are so fast to condemn other groups who don't quite agree with our way of doing things. We want to condemn them to hell. It is easy to come to saving faith in Christ, and then adapt "other" things into the gospel. We condemn rather than proclaim that there is no other gospel. The Law never did save. The Law was intended to demonstrate the absolute attributes of God and the foolishness of man to think he can attain those ideals on his own merits. All of grace, or none at all.

    I never preached a sermon in my life that I did not preach the gospel of Christ. We need a constant reminder that Jesus died for our sins. As one professor said, "Lay the sinner low, lift the Saviour high, remembering that we are just sinners saved by grace." I heard a sermon on the radio from a popular church near me. I wanted to hear what this man had to say. He grew up in a faithful Baptist church in my association, but became a minister in the most liberal church in Canada. In twenty minutes there was not one mention of Christ. It was all humanism. My friends, this takes us nowhere and leaves us there. We are left a miserable people with a "feel-good" attitude, but totally lacking in what Paul calls the gospel; Christ and Christ alone.

    Let us take heed to this lesson. Let us move from "their" experience to "our" experience, one completed by the Spirit and not by the law; by sound preaching and not gaseous verbosity; by the work of Christ in us and not our works.

    Lord, thank you for reminding us that You, who has begun a good work in us, will continue that good work, and one day we will face You, and we might here the words: Well done, thou good and faithful servant."

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  20. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K)
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    Amen - it is a good work which HE started and HE will complete as we allow Him to have free reign and then obey Him.
     

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