Arthur and Kathleen Vick
Arthur and Kathleen Vick  |  Columbus, Ohio
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Kathleen's Testimony - Part 1
Posted by: Arthur and Kathleen Vick | more..
BLOG ON: SERMON When Is a Person Truly Saved?
Henry T. Mahan Sermons
Henry Mahan

"...crushed beneath a load that exceeds all your strength to bear."

The LORD Jesus Christ came to me in saving faith on Thanksgiving Day in 1990. I wanted to post a sermon on the subject of "Giving Thanks To God" to illustrate the events of that great miracle in my life, the miracle of receiving life for all my sin through the sacrificial death of the LORD Jesus Christ. I found this wonderful message from Henry Mahan, entitled, "When Is A Person Truly Saved?, and decided to post it as a preface to my testimony.

"What does being saved have to do with giving thanks?"

It may seem harsh, but the true answer is: "No one can give thanks to God, except those who are saved, that is, those who are redeemed by the blood of the Lamb of God, the Saviour, Jesus Christ the LORD."

And who is redeemed? What is God's salvation all about? How is it acquired? "When Is A Person Truly Saved"? Mr. Mahan answers this question, expounding the very truth of God in the answer he has given: "When God is pleased to save".

Society has established a tradition, a day to give thanks, but it's mostly just a paid holiday for anybody who has a decent job. Sure, lots of people say, "I'm thankful for my family, for my job, for my health", but how many say, "I'm thankful to God"?

Okay, maybe a small percentage do say they are thankful to God, but how many of these know God according to truth, according to the revelation He gives of Himself in the Bible? Most have a God of their own making. Their God is pleased with whatever man can, will, or even desires to do, as long as man is sincere and has good intentions. Hey, I'm not pointing a finger at anybody, because that's exactly what I thought about God, too. I was wrong.

I recently saw a news report about local school children here in Ohio, who were given an assignment to draw a picture of what they were thankful for. Not one child mentioned that they were God. They learn early on, that mentioning God in school (or at home, for that matter) will bring ridicule down on your head from all quarters. I remember what it was like. I grew up that way, too, learning to scoff at any mention of God or of the Bible. But I especially learned that to get ahead and avoid problems, hating the name of JESUS is a must. Sure, Catholics used it as a swear word, but everybody else had better just ignore it.

We live in a world where dark forces control the matrix. God tells us that "the whole world lieth in the Wicked One". Satan, through all that is in the flesh and in the world, tells us that we are free to decide our own destiny. Sure, go ahead. Give thanks. Just be careful not to be thankful to God. That's forbidden. This will bring the rage of the whole culture against you.The devil keeps his slaves captive, always busy arguing about whether or not there even IS a God!

The churches are largely governed by the same dark forces that rule the secular world, but in religion, the devils deceive by more subtle means. We are relentlessly beaten with the free-will message of salvation: "Save yourself! Make a decision! Accept Jesus!" And once the poor fool is coerced into submission, then the chains are bound around him, head to toe, with "Do this! Do that! Read your Bible! Be good or God will send you to hell!" This is the horror, the insanity, of free-will religion. It's everywhere and it has poisoned countless multitudes, entrapping them in oppression and tyranny on earth and consigning them to a fiery death in hell for all eternity. "For by the deeds of the Law (by works) shall no flesh be saved." Romans 3:20

And so I ask you to consider this question: "Who CAN Give Thanks to God?" The true answer is found in Scripture and may be summed up like this: All those who have been ordained by God to give Him thanks, will give Him thanks. God's chosen people know, with unshakable certainty, that God Himself has delivered them from the penalty due to them for their sin; furthermore, God Himself had ordained that their sins should be laid upon their Saviour, Who bore those sins away forever in the death He died on their behalf at Calvary. Finally, in the resurrection of the LORD Jesus Christ, each chosen redeemed soul receives the gift of eternal life in their Saviour. These are the people who give thanks to God, now and forevermore.

Like every other true believer, I was deceived by Satan for a season, according to the will of God. I was living in the matrix, believing all the lies set forth in the false reality. I was the captain of my destiny. I put my confidence in my will, my goodness, my intelligence and my beauty. I never saw myself as poor, blind, wretched or starving, nor could I comprehend that I was dead in trespasses and in sins, until the LORD Jesus Christ came to me in the Word of God. It was then that I beheld His Beauty, as the Beauty of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. I was chosen by Him to receive the revelation of God's salvation to my soul. This is the greatest miracle there is in all the world. Praise God, He showed me my sin and His power to blot it all out forever.

As a slave in the matrix, I had a sumptuous meal with family and friends on Thanksgiving Day. I could answer the question, "What are YOU thankful for this year?" And I knew exactly what I wanted for Christmas, too. Thanksgiving was a holiday, that's about it. I could say I was thankful, to go along with the crowd, but I never gave thanks to God. Never. That is, not until I was born again on Thanksgiving Day in 1990.

(Please continue to the next blog, "Kathleen's Testimony - Part 2", for a continuation of my story.)

ISAIAH 12 : 1 - 6

"And in that day thou shalt say, O LORD, I will praise Thee: though Thou wast angry with me. Thine anger is turned away, and Thou comfortedst me.

Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; He also is become my salvation.

Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.

And in that day shall ye say, Praise the LORD, call upon His Name, declare His doings among the people, make mention that His Name is exalted.

Sing unto the LORD; for He hath done excellent things: this is known in all the earth.

Cry out and shout, thou inhabitant of Zion: for great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee."

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Greetings to you from Arthur and Kathleen Vick.

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Kathleen Shea Vick
Q: How does one begin to explain the Gospel of God's Free Sovereign Grace in the Person and Work of His Dear Son to children? A: Tell the truth in simple language,...

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