November 29th, 2015

an apocalyptic war between the gospel and its counterfeit

It is in the flow of cosmic time 10:20 AM Sunday morning Eastern Standard Time. Outside this morning there is a layer of frost on the ground and the sun is shining. Yesterday I wore for the second time my new winter coat. I wonder when we will have our first real heavy snow fall.

I got up this morning around 6:44 AM. When I got up I made myself a small bowl of oatmeal and made a pot of coffee (four cups of coffee be exact). I ate my small bowl of oatmeal messing with our main computer. After messing with our main computer I wrote in my personal diary and then read for awhile a Puritan reprint titled, "Instructions About Heartwork" by Richard Alleine (1611-1691). If you want to know more about Richard Alleine check out this volume, "Meet The Puritans - With A Guide To Modern Reprints" by Joel R. Beeke & Randall J. Pederson. While I was reading Alleine my wife arrived home from work. We talked till she went to bed around 10 o'clock AM. Now I am down in the lower level writing on my lap top. Before coming here to write I was read some more of the book, "Theology As Discipleship" by Keith L. Johnson.

I have no plans for the day ahead of me. I am really not in the mood to watch professional football after watching all day yesterday college football. I will be glad when there are no more football games to watch. I am not into watching any other sports except football.

I did read last night a novel titled, "Amy and Isabelle" a novel by Elizabeth Strout (Strout wrote these two other novels found in our library, "Olive Kitteridge" (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize) and "The Burgess Boys".)

Not much else to report this morning. I thought about quoting from the book "Instructions About Heartwork" but now I feel like a flat tire. I got out a book while down here among our vast book collection titled, "The Golden Sceptre" (6 Sermons on II Chron. 7:14) by John Preston (1587-1628).

I will close to drift. There is no way of escape.

"[6] Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near:
[7] Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon." Isaiah 55:6,7
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

Come to Calvary's holy mountain

Come to Calvary’s holy mountain,
Sinners, ruined by the Fall;
Here a pure and healing fountain
Flows to you, to me, to all,
In a full, perpetual tide,
Opened when our Savior died.

Come in poverty and meanness,
Come defiled, without, within;
From infection and uncleanness,
From the leprosy of sin,
Wash your robes and make them white;
Ye shall walk with God in light.

Come in sorrow and contrition,
Wounded, impotent, and blind;
Here the guilty free remission,
Here the troubled peace, may find.
Health this fountain will restore;
He that drinks shall thirst no more.

He that drinks shall live forever;
’Tis a soul renewing flood.
God is faithful; God will never
Break His covenant of blood,
Signed when our Redeemer died,
Sealed when He was glorified.

"[33] And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left." Luke 23:33
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

the poor receive the gospel

"And Christ foretold that the Holy Ghost, the third Person, when he was come, would observe the same order in working upon men's hearts by the ministry of the apostles; "He shall convince the world of sin," John xvi. 8, for humiliation, that is his first work: then "of righteousness," for justification: lastly, "of judgment;" that is, that sanctification which persons justified are to have wrought in them. We come now to the explication and reasons of this point, which are,
1. To show the necessity of this humiliation.
2. The order of it, as it is here placed first.
1. For the first, it is true indeed, that the Lord might bring men home to him without this humiliation. He could do as he did at the first creation, say no more but, "Let there be light," and there would be light, and that without any of this thunder: he might say, Let there be grace, and there would be grace: he could come in the still voice, without rendering the rocks, and say no more but, Open ye everlasting doors, lift up your heads, ye gates, and they would be open: but though he might have brought the children of Israel out of Egypt into the land of Canaan, without leading them through the wilderness, yet his good pleasure was thereby rather "to humble them and prove them;" so it is here.

1. The reasons of this necessity may be drawn from the relation and respect which this humiliation hath both to the other conditions that follow, and all that is promised here in the text; unto which we will fit the reasons that follow.

(1.) Without this, men will not seek out for, and come unto Christ: they will not seek his face, that is, his person. The law is our schoolmaster to bring us to Christ, by humbling us. Men will not come unto him unless they are driven; men will not seek him unless they are convinced they are lost; men will not receive him unless they are first humbled. The poor receive the gospel, the poor in spirit.

(2.) It is necessary in respect of receiving and seeking for mercy, and pardon, and forgiveness; which is the main thing here promised, "I will forgive their sins;" for until then our propounding pardon and the promises of it, and inviting men to come in, would be all but last labor: for until then, men will give us that answer, and the promises the same entertainment, which those did that were invited to the marriage feast, Matt, xxii. 5,6-"they made light of it." And so we find by experience, that when we preach the great things of the gospel, as justification and remission of sins, men account them as small things, and set light by them; and the reason is, because they are not humbled. Men do not prize Christ and the promise of pardon by him, (as manna was not prized by the Israelites,) nor his righteousness, by which they are to be justified. A man, perhaps, would be content to have Christ's righteousness, as a bridge to go upon to heaven; but he will not prize it as Paul did, who was ambitious of nothing so much as to be "found in Christ, not having his own righteousness, but that which is by faith;" accounting all things in himself, and out of himself, dross and dung in comparison with it. But a man unhumbled will not set this high prize upon it; and God will not have his jewels, much less Christ and pardon of sin, cast away at random to those who do not value them. but when a man sees the badness of his nature, the multitudes of his particular sins, and sees that in his heart which he never thought had been there, and stands amazed at them, then to have such a righteousness as shall perfectly cover all these sins, this he will think a great matter. . ." John Preston THE GOLDEN SCEPTRE pg. 60-62
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

beauty sleep

It is in the death flow 10:39 PM Sunday night. The last Sunday of November 2015. Our lives keep speeding by!

I had a quiet day wandering the house and reading my books. I did not go anywhere today. There is no place new to go to in this area of West Michigan. I have seen everything there is to see around here. It seems my life goes in circles. I am always it seems at the same spot. I like this spot I am chained to. I am free in Christ Jesus. I can swim in the ocean of God’s love in this tiny spot I inhabit.

My wife went to bed early tonight. I have been sitting in the dark preparing myself to go to bed. I have been reading a novel this evening titled, “Amy and Isabelle” by Elizabeth Strout.

I have nothing going on tomorrow. I am blessed with salvation in Christ Jesus so I am going to the New Creation when I die.

Carol has a friend dying of cancer. One of Carol’s sister-in-law’s twin brother is dying of cancer. Carol can handle death, but I find being around dying people crushing. I never got over my mother’s death.

So I suppose I will close to go to bed. I do not like going to bed, but I do not like staying up all night either. We all need are beauty sleep.

"[51] Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
[52] In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
[53] For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
[54] So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.
[55] O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
[56] The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.
[57] But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
[58] Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord." 1 Corinth. 15:51-58
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative