Fathers, the best gift you could receive today would be the overwhelming desire to seek repentance from the thrice-holy Almighty, the One whom we have long forsaken for the pleasures of the world. Paul reminds us that we are to set our affections on things that are heavenly, not on the things of this world. We need revival in America and in England, but at what price will it come?
Paul hits another one out of the park with this little sermon jam. It is well worth just under 7 minutes of your time to watch this video. May we be encouraged to continue moving forward for Christ instead of staying stagnant. As Paul exhorts in this video, let us live for Christ in such a way that we will have no regrets when we die.
Paul Washer speaks poignantly and directly to both pastors and church members. The Bride of Christ needs to wake up and remove those from their midst who keep them from following Christ. If you are following a church leadership that hates the true gospel of the Lord Jesus, you would be better to have a millstone tied around your neck and thrown into the sea then to sit under such teaching and leadership that is bound to the works of the flesh. Such a leadership is not honoring to Christ. If you know the truth and ignore it, you will be held accountable for what you know.
Where are the men in our churches who are willing to stand for what is right? We have bought into the world’s philosophies and the church has become feminized. Men, God has given a divine order for the reason that we might show the picture of Christ and His Bride to the nations. If we are going to advance in the battle, we must have men with a rod of iron in their backbone. May God forgive us for ever quitting in the first place!
HT: Jeremy B. Strang
A video from the original Reformation Nation started by The Pilgrim. It is a worthy reminder for us as we contemplate the upcoming weekend.
Today is the first day of the last month of 2013, and while for some it is a day of worship in church, for many thousands, it will be their final day on earth. For them, the day of judgment will arrive whether they believe it or not, and whether they like it or not will not matter one iota.
Today is the day of salvation for those who have never placed their faith in Jesus Christ. Flee to him and plead for mercy before it is too late.
How is it that the Gospel can move one man to wade through an army of opposition to publicly identify with Christ in a deadly winter baptism, and yet in another man who confesses the same Gospel, it has no power to make even the most insignificant changes in his life? When will the church in the West regain the fundamental biblical truth that faith is evidenced by works; that a tree is known by its fruit; and that not everyone who confesses ‘Lord, Lord’ in the comfortable confines of Western evangelicalism will enter the kingdom of heaven?
– Paul Washer
HT: Saved by Grace
Paul Washer pulls no punches as he exhorts the church to evangelize youth the biblical way. Some of the things Washer says in this sermon, Reforming Modern Youth Evangelism and Discipleship, may surprise you.
I encourage all youth evangelists, preachers, and pastors to listen to this message with an open mind; leaving your preconceived notions about youth ministry (and youth ministry abolitionists) at the door.
We who home educate, oppose youth ministries, believe Christians should dress modestly, etc. are often accused of believing this way of life makes one a Christian and makes one holy. And of course, we deny those baseless charges of “legalism” but nevertheless, the accusations are still hurled at us.
This is why I’m pleased to present this Thursday’s sermon of the week entitled The Sufficiency of Scripture and the Gospel. Paul Washer (a home education proponent and youth ministry abolitionist himself) proves that not everyone in this camp is a legalist, and to those in this camp who may tend to lean that way, he does for them in this sermon as he did for the lukewarm in his famous Shocking Sermon from 2003 (found here).
Paul Washer addresses the notion that these wonderful family oriented ideals (along with manners, modesty, etc.), albeit beautiful and virtuous and good, they in and of themselves do nothing to save a man’s soul. And he did this at a conference sponsored by the National Center for Family Integrated Churches.
This is classic Paul Washer.
I have never been what you could call a “big fan” of Tim Challies but I’ve never been able to put my finger on exactly why . . . that was until now, when I was recently made aware of a review he wrote concerning the film Divided.
Inaccurate. Distorted. Inflammatory. These are some of the words that come to mind that describe Challies’ review of the film.
I wouldn’t necessarily expect a favorable endorsement of Divided by a man who sends his own kids to the Canadian government schools to be educated, but his full frontal assault of the film was a little over the top. To say that Challies has a beef with the family-integrated model of church worship is a grave understatement.
Youth ministry proponents may disagree with the concept of families worshipping together during church services, and they may be oblivious (willfully or otherwise) to the evidence (statistically, empirically, or experientially) of the destructive nature of youth ministry, but please, I implore you to be reasonable about your arguments and refrain from resorting to less than accurate, wildly imaginative fabrications designed to persuade others away from a practice that was the norm for the church for almost 2,000 years.
If you think I’m being a little too sensitive about Challies’ hit-piece of the film (a conduit to advance his dislike of Family Integrated Churches), don’t miss the fact that even some of Challies’ own readers have disagreed with his scathing assessment of the film. On the comment thread for Challies’ review of Divided, a commenter named Matt said:
Wow. Tim, I will have to say, this review is uncharacteristically harsh, and even mean. The tone that you are stirring up here is not in any sense the tone that the movie has.
I’m flatly shocked and disappointed in such a brutal and uncharitable word from a brother that we’ve all known to have a real eloquence and gentleness even toward those with whom he differs.I really want to say this plainly. After having watched the film, your review could not be less accurate or more one-sided. I am so sad that you’ve chosen to behave publicly in ways that you have condemned when others participate in the same sort of activity.
Shame on you, Tim.
What makes Challies’ review even more disturbing is when you contrast his brass-knuckled review of Divided with his reviews of two culturally popular demonically inspired, and utterly anti-Christian works that have received acclaim from the world.
Berean Wife has astutely compared Challies’ reviews of The Shack and Twilight with that of Divided in her post simply titled Destructive in which she quotes Challies:
It’s a destructive message wrapped in a poorly-made documentary. The church would do well to ignore it.
All this is not to say there is nothing of value in the book. However, it is undeniable to the reader who will look to the Bible, that there is a great deal of error within The Shack. There is too much error.
My suggestion to parents would be to leave this book on the shelf instead of handing it to your teenage girl (and especially your young teenage girl). At the very least, read it yourself and see if your conscience is clear before you hand it to her.
Finding something of value in a book rife with doctrines of demons and blasphemes against God, and suggesting parents first read a lust-laden book (written by a Mormon) about teenage vampires in order to see if their consciences are clear before handing the book to their daughters, while conversely labeling a Christian film like Divided “destructive” and urging Christians to avoid it, renders the objectiveness of Challies’ reviews very suspect.
And while Challies encourages Christians to broaden their horizons by reading non-Christian, mainstream works because . . .
Common grace tells us that Christians do not have the market cornered when it comes to what is true and what is wise.
To read widely is to engage with people who think differently and who approach very similar issues from a radically different worldview.
If you want to understand the people around you, why they are the way they are, what influences them, why they make the decisions they do, you will do well to read the books they read.
. . . he then tells the church that they’d be better off ignoring Divided. Is it just me or does this reveal not only a glaring hypocrisy, but also proves that Challies is operating with an obvious agenda?
I also urge you to personally watch the film Divided in order to judge it for yourself. You can either purchase the DVD or watch it for free online (until September) here.
I conclude by offering some familiar advice to my readers: Regarding Challies’ review of Divided: “The church would do well to ignore it.”
Your sermon of the week is The Gift that Nobody Wants by Paul Washer. Prepare to have your toes stepped on.
For I testify about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge. For not knowing about God’s righteousness and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. Romans 10:2-4
They just don’t get it.
The false religions and cults simply cannot grasp the simplicity of the gospel message. This is evidenced anytime you have a conversation with one of them about sin, grace, faith, and justification.
You can go round and round in debate with a member of one of these organizations and you often walk away with a headache because they can’t see the forest for the trees.
They have been so indoctrinated to believe their respective organization’s interpretations of biblical texts that when someone presents them with the proper interpretation of biblical texts (using Scripture to interpret Scripture) they simply reject it.
It is so sad to watch the deceived continue in their deception, especially when they are leading others down the same broad path.
It’s like trying to convince a fish that it’s wet; the fish has known nothing but wet, so it cannot even fathom what dry is.
Recently the Jehovah’s Witnesses stopped by my home and dropped off an advertisement with my wife for an upcoming event. They won’t stay to talk (our house has been flagged for almost five years now) but they will occasionally still drop off literature . . . and run.
“John the Baptizer stated that Jesus ‘takes away the sin of the world.’ (John 1:29) This drew attention to Jesus’ role in saving obedient mankind.”
Jesus saved the obedient?
See how subtle their deception is?
The obedient don’t need a Savior. Jesus Himself said He came for the sinner, not the righteous (Matthew 9:13, Mark 2:17).
This declaration by the Jehovah’s Witnesses is predicated on the erroneous assumption that our obedience is a prerequisite for Christ to be able save us. This is classic Watchtower Organization rhetoric and is essentially the doctrine of all cults and false religions: Believing you must do your part and cooperate with God to help Him or enable Him to save you.
They just don’t get it.
If the Jehovah’s Witnesses believe obedience is required as a means or requirement of salvation (which anyone who knows Watchtower doctrine can attest that this is indeed their position) then they better be obedient to all the Law without ever sinning once from cradle to grave, otherwise they will be found guilty of breaking all the Law (James 2:10):
For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of all.
But what’s even more damning to those seeking salvation via the conduit of obedience is the fact that they are under a curse for doing the very thing they think will save them (Galatians 3:10):
For as many as are of the works of the Law are under a curse; for it is written, “CURSED IS EVERYONE WHO DOES NOT ABIDE BY ALL THINGS WRITTEN IN THE BOOK OF THE LAW, TO PERFORM THEM.”
What Jehovah’s Witnesses (and Mormons, and Roman Catholics, and Muslims, etc.) fail to understand is that regeneration comes before obedience, not the other way around. Romans 8:6-8 makes our inability very clear:
For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
They just don’t get it.
It’s only after we’ve been saved, regenerated, made alive in Christ, been born again, that our works and obedience are pleasing and acceptable to God
Our obedience is borne out of a love and desire to please the One who purchased us with His own blood, not out of us trying to appease Him and merit His favor like the pagans try do for their idols.
Our obedience, and the good works we do after being saved, come from God and are prepared beforehand for us to walk in (Ephesians 2:10). This is why our behavior should reflect our conversion (Matthew 3:8, Luke 3:8, Acts 26:20, Ephesians 4:1) and why the absence of which should cause us to question whether or not we’ve been genuinely converted.
Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you– unless indeed you fail the test? 2 Corinthians 13:5
Simply put, regeneration precedes obedience (John 14:15, John 14:21-24, 1 John 3:24).
What obedience did Abraham offer to become righteous before God (Genesis 15:6, Romans 4:3)? What obedience did John the Baptist declare to those coming to be baptized (Matthew 3:2)? What obedience did Christ declare upon the start of His earthly ministry (Matthew 4:17) or later in His ministry (Luke 13:5)? What obedience did the thief on the cross exhibit to be with Jesus that very day in paradise (Luke 23:39-43)? What obedience did Paul tell the Philippian jailer he needed to perform to be saved (Acts 16:30-31)?
The false faiths that dot the landscape of Christianity like pock marks all invalidate the word of God for the sake of their traditions (Matthew 15:6), and their works-righteousness gospel is in complete contradiction to Jesus’ teaching of the means of the free gift of God’s grace and mercy as cited in His example of the Pharisee and the tax collector in Luke 18:9-14. You cannot read those words of our Lord and still believe that your obedience (or anything for that matter) merits you any favor in God’s eyes. If you still believe otherwise, then you make Christ’s brutal, bloody, and barbaric sacrifice null and void because it was all done in vain.
I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly. Galatians 2:21
See also: Why Don’t They Get it?
I admit that, although passionate about the subject of the dividing of the family in the church (and the damage it has caused), I was not moved by the trailer for the new documentary on the subject entitled Divided when I first watched it a couple months ago.
It wasn’t until my wife ordered the DVD and we watched it that I realized the documentary was much better than the trailer (seen below) led on.
Here is the description of the documentary:
There is a crisis. Christian youth are rapidly leaving evangelical churches for the world. This well-recognized disaster has been the topic of significant discussion in recent years for both church leaders and modern news media. DIVIDED follows young Christian filmmaker Philip LeClerc on a revealing journey as he seeks answers to what has led his generation away from the church.
Traveling across the country conducting research and interviewing church kids, youth ministry experts, evangelists, statisticians, social commentators, and pastors, Philip discovers the shockingly sinister roots of modern, age-segregated church programs, and equally shocking evidence that the pattern in the Bible for training future generations is at odds with modern church practices.
He also discovers a growing number of churches that are abandoning age-segregated Sunday school and youth ministry to embrace the discipleship model that God prescribes in His Word.
This division in our churches goes beyond just dividing the youth from their parents. The body of Christ is described as one body, yet we see an ever increasing pressure within churches to segregate and divide the body of Christ in all different directions and it’s all being done without any Scriptural instruction, example or precedence to support these divisions.
A kingdom divided against itself will not stand and we see the modern American church being divided into singles groups, women’s groups, men’s groups, seniors groups, services for contemporary music preference groups, services for traditional music preference groups, married couples groups, 20-something groups, 30-something groups, and the list goes on and on.
With all these divisions being promoted within the Western church is it any wonder why we find the bride of Christ in the condition she’s currently in?
This division within our churches is most disappointing when it comes to the youth. What message are we giving our children when they are ushered from the service as soon as the pastor is about to deliver the life giving words of holy Scripture?
This documentary (featuring interviews from such notables as Paul Washer, Voddie Baucham, Ken Ham, and Doug Phillips) is a must-see for everyone who’s in a church that’s currently dividing the children from their parents and from the preaching of the Word.
Listen to Brian Borgman’s message to his congregation in which he dismissed the children from service for the last time in Children in Worship.