Friday, October 12, 2018

Sin Killed Jesus Christ!

The wages of sin is death. Sin kills and murders! Yet sin is very tantalizing and seductive. It sleeps with many and kills as many! It is my desire that you would view sin's nature rightly. I pray that the Spirit of the Living God may give you the grace to make a correct estimation of it is guilt. Read the third verse of Thomas Kelly's hymn, Stricken Smitten and Afflicted and the Puritan, Thomas Brooks' book, Precious Remedies Against Satan's Devices, to know this.

You who think of sin but lightly,
Nor suppose the evil great
Here may view its nature rightly,
Here its guilt may estimate.
Mark the sacrifice appointed,
See who bears the awful load;
It is the Word, the Lord's Anointed,
Son of Man and Son of God.
Thomas Kelly, 1769-1854 (Hymn, Stricken, Smitten, and Afflicted)

How did God deal with sin? Christ, His only Son had to come from the eternal bosom of his Father to a region of sorrow and death. That God should be manifested in the flesh, the Creator made a creature; that He who was clothed with glory should be wrapped with rags of flesh; He who filled heaven and earth with his glory should be cradled in a manger. That the almighty God should flee from weak man—the God of Israel into Egypt. That the God of the law should be subject to the law for He was born under the law. That the God of the circumcision be circumcised on the eighth day, that the God who made the heavens working at Joseph's workshop! That He who binds the devils in chains should be tempted; that He, whose is the world, and the fullness thereof, should hunger and thirst; that the God of strength should be weary, the Judge of all flesh condemned, the God of life put to death; that He who is one with his Father should cry out of misery, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" (Matt. 27:46). That He who had the keys of hell and death at his belt should lie imprisoned in the grave of another, having in his lifetime nowhere to lay his head, nor after death to lay his body. Such was the cost of sin, so view its nature rightly by discovering who bears the awful load – tis the Word, the Lord’s Anointed, Son of God and Son of Man.

That that HEAD, before which the angels do cast down their crowns, should be crowned with thorns;
That the EYES, purer than the sun, be put out by the darkness of death even though momentarily;
That those EARS, which hear nothing but hallelujahs of saints and angels, to hear the blasphemies of the multitude;
That FACE, which was fairer than the sons of men, to be spit on by those beastly wretched Jews;
That that MOUTH and TONGUE, which spoke as never man spoke, be accused for blasphemy;
That those HANDS, which freely swayed the scepter of heaven, nailed to the cross;
That those FEET, "like unto fine brass," nailed to the cross for man's sins; each sense pained with a spear and nails;
That His SMELL, with stinking odor, being crucified on Golgotha, the place of skulls;
That his TASTE, with vinegar and gall;
That his HEARING, with reproaches, and
That SIGHT of his mother and disciples bemoaning him;
That his SOUL, comfortless and forsaken by God, forsaken by friends, forsaken by family, forsaken by his own, forsaken by his foes; and
All this for those very sins that Satan paints and puts fine colors upon!
Oh! how should the consideration of this stir up the soul against sin, and work the soul to fly and flee from it, and to use all holy means whereby sin may be subdued, killed and destroyed!

It was good counsel one gave, "Never let go out of your minds the thoughts of a crucified Christ." Let these be food and drink unto you; let them be your sweetness and consolation, your honey and your desire, your reading and your meditation, your life, death, and resurrection.
Thomas Brooks, 1608 -1680

Monday, July 23, 2018

Everyone who calls on the Name of the Lord will be saved

For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." 
(Rom 10:13)

Friend, I pray and desire that you may be saved today. This is also God’s own desire for you, for He desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Tim. 2:4). Your greatest need is not to have a job or money. Your greatest need is not a wife or a child. Your greatest need is not to be healed and be healthy. Your greatest need is salvation from your sins. You may be wealthy or healthy, but what does it profit a man to gain the whole world but lose his soul? There is no profit for your soul if you drove a Porsche and lived in the most expensive neighbourhood but remain unsaved. If your sins are upon you, then you will surely die. But there is a message of good news here. The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into world to save sinners, even the worst of sinners (1 Tim. 1:15).
Let us unpack the verse that heads this message. Let us in it hear the promise of God. Let us see in it a faithful saying and let us receive it as ours. Let us receive it with meekness and believe its message: “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
EVERYONE - Anyone and everyone - without distinction. Jews and Gentiles can appropriate this wonderful blessing of salvation to themselves. Our Saviour calls upon male and female to be saved - and He is able to save them. This promise may be received by a boy or a girl. It may be an old man as well as a young man. Anyone means the sick as well as the healthy so long as they call upon the Saviour Jesus Christ, there will be salvation for their souls. Therefore, the salvation that there is in Jesus Christ does not discriminate in terms of nation or tribe, language or race, age or gender or anything else. Rich or poor may gain entrance into the glorious kingdom of God. Jews and Gentiles are saved in the same way. Neither Jews nor Gentiles have righteousness of their own. Salvation is for everyone who calls on the name of the Lord.
WHO CALLS ON - To call on or upon is taken from the Greek word epikalesntai means a believing expectation of our all from Christ. To call upon is to express faith in prayer, trusting only in the one being called upon. Calling upon is the same as crying out for help, having abandoned all hope in oneself. Calling upon is not despair, where all hope is abandoned. It is trusting in another to who is both able and willing to offer or bring help to the one who calls. The point is made - if anyone is to be saved, he has a responsibility to call upon Christ. Do you need to saved from your sins? Then call upon Christ. 
THE NAME OF THE LORD - In Joel 2:32, from where this verse is cited, the LORD referred to is Yahweh, but both Peter and Paul's inspired hermeneutics takes it to refer to Christ! Salvation full and free is to be obtained from only one Saviour - the Lord Jesus Christ, who being the eternal Son of God became man and so was and continues to be God and Man in two distinct natures and one person forever. To call on the Name of the LORD is to appeal to Him to save in accordance with who He is and what He has done and accomplished for salvation. The saving mercy and grace is extended to those who ask the Lord for it. God says that He will have mercy on whom He will have mercy, and who is it that He will have mercy? Everyone who calls on His name.
 Charles Hodge commenting on this verse puts it this way;
     "Whosoever, therefore, betakes himself to God as his refuge, and calls upon Him, in the exercise of faith, as his God, shall be saved, whether Gentile or Jew." 
Robert Haldane also commenting on this verse puts it this way:
"By calling on the name of the Lord, all parts of religious worship which we render to God are intended. It denotes a full entire communion with God. He who calls on the name of the Lord, profoundly humbles himself before God, recognises His power, adores His majesty, believes His promises, confides in His goodness, hopes in His mercy, honours Him as his God, and loves Him as his Saviour. It supposes that this invocation is inseparable from all other parts of religion. To call on the name of the Lord is to place ourselves under His protection, and to have recourse to Him for aid."
WILL BE SAVED ­– The Gospel speaks of salvation from sins. Salvation is eternal and happy blessedness, where our sinful nature is replaced with a new nature after the image and likeness of Christ in true righteousness and holiness. It is being born again and adopted into the family of God. It is becoming a child of God, and therefore co-heir with Christ. It is being made a partaker of the kingdom of God. Therefore, salvation spoken of is that happy condition in which even angels have never been partakers. Remember that by nature we were sinners, dead sinners, enslaved in sin, blind to the riches and preciousness of Christ, children of wrath and enemies of God. In salvation all that old condition is done away with and we are immediately made to be the redeemed of the Lord.
No one has ever called upon the name of the Lord who did not get saved. Zacchaeus was saved in spite being a corrupt man in his duties. The paralytic was forgiven his sins and freed from the bondage of sin. Mary Magdalene, who was a prostitute and who, perhaps, broke many families in her sexual immorality was saved. The dying thief who repented while he was upon the cross went to Paradise with Christ that same day.
Don't trust upon yourself or any other. Don't depend upon your work, merit or conduct. Depend on Christ. Don't depend on a preacher or a pastor or a priest. Depend on Christ alone. Don’t repeat any preacher’s prayer – repent from your own heart, thinking about your own sin with your own mind, sorrowing over your own guilt, weeping for offending such a benevolent God, pleading for the forgiveness of your own iniquity, entrusting your soul only to the Saviour. To get to God, you need a Mediator – Jesus Christ (1 Tim. 2:5). However, to go to the Mediator, you don’t need another mediator! The Mediator has already come to men and has taken the nature of men in order that He may be a merciful and faithful high priest in relation to God, on our behalf (Hebrews 4:14-16). The mediation of Mary is not necessary; the mediation of a human priest is completely unwarranted; the mediation of a pastor is completely useless! Don’t trust any other mediation to be saved. Jesus Christ is perfectly sufficient to handle your case. He is all you need and you have Him if you will trust Him!
We have a great Saviour in Jesus Christ. There is no need to delay a salvation so full and free. There is nothing to keep you from coming to Christ except your own rebellion and sin. A great high priest is none other than the Saviour Christ – come to Him. A great sacrifice of Christ who is the sin-bearing Lamb of God. He is able to save to the uttermost all those who draw near to God through Him (Heb. 7:25).
He bears the name above all names – reigning Son of God, surpassing all other titles, powers and claims. He is our mighty Advocate with the Father. He is our Friend, Prophet, Priest and King. He knows all our weaknesses, tears and pain for He was tempted like us in every respect yet emerged triumphant, without sin.
Come and obtain salvation for your soul. Come and find rest for yourself. Do not harden your heart. You have heard His invitation – “Come to me all you who labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest!”
Seek His grace and you will find it. He is supreme to save go to Him without any more delay. Let us praise our risen, ascended Lord, the great Saviour of sinners, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Monday, June 18, 2018

What is Wrong with the Roman Catholic Church?

Ten Grave Errors of Roman Catholicism
What is wrong with the largest ‘Christian’ denomination, the Roman Catholic Church (RCC)? Why should true Christians be more wary of it and run away from it? It is primarily because their teaching is opposed to God and the gospel of His Son. It is because its teaching holds no hope of salvation for sinners. It is because it’s teaching is heretical, erroneous to the mind. It is poisonous to the soul and can eternally condemn to hell. RCC does not claim to teach salvation from sin. It does not give any assurance of salvation to her follows. The head of the RCC, the Pope exalts himself against Christ, claiming to be the vicar of God.

1.     Justification by faith, baptism and works:
The Vatican Catechism claims that for God to justify us, which means ‘to cleanse us from our sins and to communicate to us the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ and through baptism’. This is a serious problem because if followed many would not be saved at all. This is because their way of salvation is not the one that God has revealed in His word, that is, salvation is by God’s free grace through faith alone in Christ alone. The reality is that once you add to the grace of God, then it is a claim to earn salvation by one’s own merit. This is very wrong because it is not the teaching of the Bible since it adds that we are justified not just through faith in Jesus Christ, but also through baptism! The Bible unequivocally states that, “For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from works of the law “(Rom 3:28). Will any sinner be saved from his sins? Then he must believe in Jesus Christ and he will be saved (Acts 16:31).

2.     Papal infallibility
This infringes on the absolute attribute of God - placing a man at par with God, whose Word only cannot be broken (John 10:35). Popes are men and no man is infallible nor righteous – no, not one (Rom. 3:11) – God alone is righteous, just and the justifier (Rom. 3:26) and it is only the word given by God that is inspired because it is breathed out by Him (2Timothy 3:16). Popes do not and cannot speak from God as they are carried along by the Holy Spirit. They err and have erred; they sinned and have sinned and fallen into wickedness and perdition over and over again. Only the Bible, is the Word of God and is the only rule for faith and for life. Scriptures alone!

3.    Devotion to Mary
This teaching is blasphemous because she is referred to as the mother of God. RCC follows even make prayers through her and, even more, outrageously to her! Mary is made a mediator between God and men yet we know that the Mediator is One – the Man Christ Jesus (1Tim. 2:5). This is elevating a sinful person into God. Mary, just as any other woman, while was highly favoured by God to bear the Messiah, is in absolute need of salvation from her sins just like anyone else. The doctrine of immaculate conception which is the conception of Mary, free from original sin. RCC unashamedly teaches that God acted upon Mary in the first moment of her conception keeping her "immaculate".

4.     The Mass
The Mass or Eucharistic Celebration is the central liturgical ritual in the RCC, where the Eucharist (Communion) is consecrated by the priest. RCC describes the Mass as "the source and summit of the Christian life" and teaches that through consecration by a priest the sacrificial bread and wine become the body and blood of Christ[1] It is blasphemous and foolish to suppose that the elements of the communion are transformed miraculously to become the substance of the body and blood, soul and divinity Christ, as to be worshipped or venerated. This tenet lacks common sense and being deficient of Biblical truth is absurd.
We learn from the Scriptures “… that the Lord Jesus on the night when He was betrayed took bread, and when he had given thanks, He broke it and said, ‘This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying. ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as drink it, in remembrance of me.’ For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.” (1 Cor. 11:24-26). Therefore, the Holy Communion or the Lord’s Supper is a commemoration of Christ, and the proclamation of His death until He comes. It is not a sacrifice of Christ by the RCC priest as is the mass. People are made to think that the grace of God flows to men through sacraments yet we know that salvation is by faith in Christ alone (Eph. 2:8).

5.     Devotion to their priesthood
It is serious for mortal sinful men to replace themselves with Christ by purporting to offer sacrifices. It is wrong because Christ is the last and the great high priesthood, who has offered Himself as the final sacrifice once and for all. The Bible clearly teaches that we have such a high priest, one who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven, a minister in the holy places in the true tent that the Lord set up, not man.
Read on from Hebrews 8:4-7, 13
Now if he were on earth, he would not be a priest at all, since there are priests who offer gifts according to the law. They serve a copy and shadow of the heavenly things. For when Moses was about to erect the tent, he was instructed by God, saying, "See that you make everything according to the pattern that was shown you on the mountain." But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry that is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises. For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no occasion to look for a second… In speaking of a new covenant, he makes the first one obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.
At best the RCC priest serve in the old covenant which has now been made obsolete – it is null and void because we have a better covenant, the New Covenant in the blood of Christ. Devotion to the earthly priests shows a religion that is deficient of the power to pardon sin, and to convey divine salvation.

6.     Penance and auricular confessions
This is a terrible teaching which is out rightly deceptive, lacking any warrant from the Holy writ, the Word of God. RCC classifies sins into mortal and venial sins, something that the Bible doesn’t do but says that the wages of sins (all) is death. It is wrong because the mediatorial role of Christ is taken by a man, the priest who hears, receives confession of sins and conveys forgiveness! Anyone who goes to the priest to confess his sins, wastes his precious time and energy. "Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?" (Luk 5:21) The response to Jesus of these two questions is important on this matter, “But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins" (Luk 5:24) Catholics would be better instructed to go to Christ, who invites, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Mat 11:28)

7.     Indulgencies
RCC encourages their people to give offerings, that is money, to the church for the sake of the dead relatives so that their sins may be pardoned and that they may be transferred from purgatory to heaven. This is ridiculously wrong because they provide another way in which sinners can be saved. Salvation is only through Jesus Christ, for He is the only way, the only truth and the only life – No one can get to the Father except through Him (John 14:6).

8.     Purgatory
This is middle-ground of eternal destiny as one awaits judgment! It is wrong because it provides for a place which the Bible does not talk about – a person dies once then after that is judgement (Heb. 9:7). This is a human invention and cannot be found anywhere in the Bible. Anyone who dies outside of Christ, will eternally live away from Christ and will be subjected to the fires of hell forever, where the worm does not die and the fire is unquenched.

9.     Tradition as an addition source of truth
This is the basic problem of the Catholicism and it is a serious one, since for them the Bible is neither sufficient nor final. It is wrong to add or to subtract from the Bible because when all has been said and done – it is only the Bible that is able to make people wise for salvation (2Tim. 3:15), not the traditions of Roman Catholic or of pope. The warnings from the Word of God need to be sufficient reason for them to stop any aspects of adding or subtracting to it.
You shall not add to the word that I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of the LORD your God that I command you. (Deu 4:2)
"Everything that I command you, you shall be careful to do. You shall not add to it or take from it. (Deu 12:32)
Do not add to his words, lest he rebuke you and you be found a liar. (Pro 30:6)
I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book, and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book. (Rev 22:18-19)

Those who dissented from the Roman Catholic teachings were subjected to the cruellest trials that lead to tortures and ultimately death at stake. This lead to truth being suppressed, and resulted in a thousand years of the church being in darkness and shows how serious it was. This has now been renamed to colloquium (conversation) and it shows that Catholicism has not changed much. It is wrong to force rational people into adapting into a theological system that is not even biblical. Christianity is a religion of love, even for one’s enemies and we are told to pursue peace with all men (Heb 12:14). Never should a Christian use violence – it is for God to avenge. God does this in the modern society through the state, which His agent, for good to those who do good. The state is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath (Rom. 13:4,5)

[1] Wikipedia