John UK wrote: I've no doubt Helps UK will like to chip in with a couple of cents worth..
Not really bro. I don't believe that I have anything new to add to what has been said previously on this subject. The key for me (and I can't remember who put it like this before) is whether the determining factor in our salvation is grace or something else. We all say we are saved by grace through faith, but for some, apparently, grace only plays a part but does not determine the outcome. If grace does not determine the outcome that whatever lip service we pay to being saved by grace, we have something else that saves other than grace, and that to my mind is not right Christian doctrine. And therefore the Arminian idea of prevenient grace, as the same grace extended to all, appears to me to be erroneous. I'll leave it at that, not wishing to be controversial.
In tears wrote: Our experience in the American churches.....we have no spiritual fellowship....gets very quiet when we want to talk of the things of the Lord. Very heartbroken in this matter. Please pray for us!
Ladybug, thank you for the YouTube link. Very sad that such an inditement should ever be levelled at the Lord's people who are supposed to be marked out for their genuine love towards each other.
I shall pray for you.
Brother Frank, thank you for your comment. Loved with an everlasting love. Who can fathom such depths?
Praying for you.
If it helps, please do not hesitate to contact me. I've included my email address in this post. Whatever is within my power to do to help, is yours for the asking. Be assured that there are people who do care for your souls.
I often think on the apostle Paul and our Lord's words to him on the Damascus road, "it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks". What "pricks" was the Lord referring to?
I believe we get a small glimpse in Romans 16v7 where the apostle writes: "Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen, and my fellow-prisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me".
Is it inconceivable that these relatives who are brave enough to be in prison were also bold enough to witness to an unconverted Pharisee named Saul? Could it explain his fury in wanting to imprison and kill these Christians who made gains in his own family? And how long did he bear with them before becoming angry at this new religion which sought, in his mind, to subvert the Jewish faith?
We don't read an awful lot about the Lord's dealings with Paul prior to his conversion, but glimpses such as these are precious.
In any event the Lord was dealing with him prior to his Damascus road experience and this much cannot be denied.
As for moniker man, he has no scripture proof and that is enough to tell me that he speaks from ignorance.
Ladybug, thank you for your kind words regarding a hastily drafted and poor testimony.
Lurker wrote: Thank you brother for sharing your life giving experience...
I did a rather poor job of it I'm afraid because I was so short on time and also space limitations on posts here. In essence what I wanted to do was support your post about a preparatory work of the Spirit in the lives of those whom the Lord calls. I remember even before my first ever answer to prayer crying out to God to show himself to me. The answered prayer was an indicator what direction I should travel. Reading the NT created a hunger and thirst for knowing the Lord, followed by periods of seeking of Christ, sometimes halfheartedly and other times more earnestly until finally the Lord heard my cries and dealt closely with me leading to my conversion. Presumably the delay was either because I was not sincere enough or in order to test my sincerity.
I have heard it said by some that the Lord does not answer the prayers of the wicked. I have always found it difficult to believe this since the Lord heard and answered me on numerous occasions when I was still unconverted. Dear old Spurgeon used to ask if the Lord hears the cry of the young ravens to feed them (Ps. 147:9) why should he not hear the cries of those who are yet unconverted?
I had heard of what others who had abandoned their family faith had suffered and had no idea what I would face. My family recognised the change in me, but tried to write it off as some aberration. I tried to join a local church and this brought matters to a head, the upshot of which was that I was asked to leave home. I had nowhere to turn and so went to see the pastor of the church who made enquiries and put me in touch with a deacon who let me have a flat for a nominal rent because I earned very little. The Lord has continued to deal with this sinner very graciously and even though I have let him down again and again, often grievously, he has proved faithful to me. I stand in awe of his holiness and majesty, I am humbled that he should ever deal this worm with such mercy, grace and kindness. All praise to his dear name.
I apologise for such lengthy posts, but I trust you will join with me in thanking God for the riches of his love and condescension in Christ our Saviour.
Thank you brother Lurker for the welcome back. Appreciated.
When I saw the boy, my heart started to race and I braced myself for another beating. He crossed the room and when near enough he held out his hand and apologised to me. Naturally, I was delighted with this, but this was literally the first ever answer to prayer I had experienced. I decided never to pray to any other deity. Of course I was not a Christian and with the encouragement of some friends who professed Christ I started reading the Bible. I read the NT through at least twice, I attended some rallies, went forward when the alter call was made etc. but no change in me yet. I saw myself as a Hindu and Christian. I then went to university, joined with other Christians in the CU and continued to read the Bible. This time the experience was very different. Every word that I read pierced my heart. The love of Christ melted my heart, I saw and felt my own wickedness and need of the Saviour as never before, I repented in tears, came to believe firmly in the one only saviour of mankind. I saw the exclusive claims of Christ and determined to follow him no matter what. I had a wonderful sense of God's presence with me which stayed with me for several months.
I was born and raised up in a Hindu family in East Africa. I was always interested in art from a young age. Aged about 9 I was walking home from school and happened to see a booklet on the ground with great comic drawing. I picked it up and read it. It was a summary presentation of Christ's life and death which made a real impact on me, but not to convert. We had to move to England. Being the eldest it was my responsibility to pray to the deities morning and evening at our home shrine. But this changed for me after an experience. I was set upon by the school bully aged 15 because of the colour of my skin. We'd been involved in a car accident a few weeks before and my father was in intensive car fighting for his life. I was trying to hurry to the hospital to meet my mum. I didn't say anything to my parents, but I recalled the words of Christ to pray for enemies, and so during my devotions I prayed to none other deity, but to Christ to forgive this boy and help me to forgive him. A few days later I was called into the head's office who told me she was made aware of what had happened. I refused to implicate the boy. A couple of days later I went to school and was in the locker room to hang up my coat when this boy walked in.
Lurker wrote: Sorry Frank, I was near tears when I wrote that comment, having read the toxic abuse and personal attacks amongst Christian brothers which happened during the day. My comment wasn't meant to include your posts. But now that sadness has turned to anger over the nonchalant attitudes about what has happened which tells me something is seriously amiss. I need to consider whether there is a place for me here any longer.
With great sadness I have to agree with you. I too need to consider whether there is a place for me here any longer.
Dolores wrote: Thanks Helps, thanks for clearing that up about what TS, said like pennned said to Frank, he is not seeing her point but I do because my daughter is a teacher and has to work because she was an abused wife and had a child. It wasn't easy but she raised him as a single mom and he is a teacher now and will be marrying a sweet christian woman whose parents are both pastors of a Presbyterian church, my in-laws are pentecostal, I had a church of Christ neighbor, I am Baptist with Methodist friends, a Jew that is the step grandmother, on and on. My granddaughter talks her about Jesus and she listens but it's not in a condemning way. It's kinda hard for me to be judgemental you see. God lets me know He doesn't need my help to change anyone.My point was that you can be favored on one thread and be at odds on another. Sorry, I just didn't get that across. I, not like some, do have feet of clay.
I meant no criticism of you Dolores. Just setting the record straight in case some reading your post attributed those sentiments to TS.
Dolores wrote: ....Right now at this very moment, John Uk and troll spotter are in disagreement about does God still speak to us today? I say yes, do I condemn troll spotter and am mean to him no. God forbid. This is why I don't seek the favor of man because that can be very fickle like I said......
In the interest of fairness, just in case TS does not see your comment to respond to Dolores, I should correct your statement of TS's stand. He did NOT say that God does not speak today.
Here is a quote from TS, 10/31/14 12.42 PM, "...John, please don't misrepresent what I am saying. I am not saying God doesn't speak. I am saying that we don't see eye to eye on what the speaking amounts to. My contention is that he uses his word, as A W Pink explains HERE Ditch the Word and you've become a mystic!"
John UK wrote: Hello GS, Are you referring to the text: Acts 2:17-21 KJV... A lot depends on the meaning of the words "the last days" and "that great and notable day of the Lord". We know that Joel's prophecy was all about the new covenant which began at Pentecost in Acts 2, but was this new covenant made obsolete and replaced by a third, which was the same as the second but with things missing?
John, from Hebrew 9.17 we know that the NC came into force immediately The Lord died. Joel's prophecy concerned one of the first blessings of the NC viz. the giving of the Holy Spirit. So not sure what you mean about the NC starting at Pentecost.
TS stated that Pentecost didn't happen every single day of the NT. Do you disagree? If not, do you have a third covenant to explain why not, if this was so central an evidence of the NC and had to keep happening again and again?
When I have time I want to take some of the lessons of Pentecost and quiz you on them.
John UK wrote: ... But I had heard God speaking to me before then, when I wasn't reading the Bible, when I wasn't seeking him. I say Glory to God! You say, "It cannot be!" Ah, but he did speak to me when I was drunk, and he told me that I was a hell-bound sinner, and on the verge of death. He showed me that there was a God who judged sinners, that I was damned, that there was no hope for me. Praise God! You say, "It cannot be!" But it was so. And I care not who gainsays it, even if they be my dearest friends. I will not deny what the Great God has done in my life, by direct communication, unsought and unwanted. But he did it. One day you can ask him, and he will tell you. Now please stop acting like those in the new testament who kept asking the sick man how he got healed.
If so John, you shouldn't quote Bonar to justify your experience, because clearly he's not saying the same as you. And, by the way, I'm not trying to rain on your parade, just trying to figure out where you're leading with all this. You believe The Lord spoke with you, fine. But now you're saying that he should speak like that with everyone?
John UK wrote: Horatius Bonar I heard the voice of Jesus say, "Come unto Me and rest; Lay down, thou weary one, lay down Thy head upon My breast!" I came to Jesus as I was, Weary and worn and sad; I found in Him a resting place, And He has made me glad. I heard the voice of Jesus say, "Behold, I freely give The living waterâ€” thirsty one, Stoop down, and drink, and live!" I came to Jesus, and I drank Of that life-giving stream: My thirst was quenched, my soul revived, And now I live in Him. I heard the voice of Jesus say, "I am this dark world's Light; Look unto Me, thy morn shall rise, And all thy day be bright!" I looked to Jesus, and I found In Him my Star, my Sun; And in that Light of life I'll walk Till trav'ling days are done.
John, I don't know where you are leading with this, but I would say he heard those words spoken to him in the Bible and through biblical preaching. Do you want me to put together some passages to illustrate this?
John UK wrote: .. As for revival being the norm or not. If a flower is wilting in a vase, it probably needs watering. Then it revives. Now if a believer is wilting, they need (as Lloyd-Jones said), a fresh baptism of the Spirit and of fire. And he continued to say that if a large group of believers were baptised with the Spirit all together, that was a revival - big time.
Not a view of revival that everyone would agree with John. The other way of viewing it is to say that the churches have a great commission which they are supposed to be obeying, The Lord being with them as he promised. But, from time to time, in the Sovereignty of God, there are special visitations, when God grants an extraordinary sense of his presence and power and there follow extraordinary blessings. This view is IMHO more faithful to church history and does not unjustly condemn or deride churches that seek to obey the great commission and only see limited blessing as determined by a Sovereign God.
John UK wrote: ....... It is the same with revival. Until a person experiences it for themself, they flap about like a beached stingray..
Just a quick comment for consideration. As you know the Church meeting at the Met Tab do a sterling gospel work and each year they see quite a number saved and added to their numbers. I recall at one of the Seminary sessions Dr Masters commenting on the books on Revivals printed by the BOT, and other books pretty much telling us that that is what we should all be seeking. Dr Masters comment was that this proves to be a useful distraction for churches that are not working churches. In other words where there is no emphasis on Gospel work, with all church members involved in Christian service, the only way they can envisage any blessing is by way of Revival. Instead of remedying their lack of service they gather to pray for revival. It seems to me that in your insistence that revival conditions should be the norm, you are advocating something similar with the added aspect of what you term 'experiential' Christianity, a term you are not using in its usual meaning, because every true Christian experiences The Lord and has a relationship with him, whatever you may think of the quality of that. God bless
.... John 20.1 we find guidance on whether the Christian sabbath should be the seventh day or the first day of the week. The answer of all but a very small minority of Christians down the centuries has been â€“ the first day. The authority for this is the example of the church of the New Testament, which was no doubt commanded by God, through the apostles. The special day for Christians was distinguished from the Jewish sabbath, and set on the day of Christâ€™s resurrection.
The Lord rose from the dead on the first day of the week, and in John 20.19 and 26 we observe that other appearances of the resurrected Lord were also on subsequent first days. Verse 19 reads â€“ â€˜Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst.â€™ He stands amidst his people, and pronounces his peace upon them, on what came to be called, 'the Lordâ€™s Day'.
Verse 26 reads: 'And after eight days again?.?.?.?then came Jesus.' We would say after seven days, but the Jews started counting on the first day and finished counting on the last day and so they made seven, eight. The text intends to tell us that the Lord appeared the very next Sunday....