Sunday, 15 July 2018

Charles Spurgeon on Limited Atonement

"We are often told that we limit the atonement of Christ, because we say that Christ has not made a satisfaction for all men, or all men would be saved. Now, our reply to this is, that, on the other hand, our opponents limit it: we do not. The Arminians say, Christ died for all men. Ask them what they mean by it. Did Christ die so as to secure the salvation of all men? They say, "No, certainly not." We ask them the next question - Did Christ die so as to secure the salvation of any man in particular? The answer "No." They are obliged to admit this if they are consistent. They say "No, Christ has died that any man may be saved if" - and then follow certain conditions of salvation. Now who is it that limits the death of Christ? Why, you. You say that Christ did not die so as infallibly to secure the salvation of anybody."

Here Spurgeon highlights the key issue for any consideration of the atonement - its nature, its design.
This crystallizes the debate between the Arminian and the Calvinist. Did Christ die in order to make it possible for men to be save, or did He die in order to save?

The Arminian, given his defective view of the natural man's ability, teaches that God intended, in sending Christ, to give every man a chance to be saved. The Calvinist, given his scriptural views of man's natural inability, believes that if a chance is all that is offered, none will be saved whatsoever. No, if any are to be saved, they are saved by a work wrought of Divine power (cf. Romans 1.16). The Calvinistic doctrine teaches an atonement that really atones.

P. 173-174, The Gospel According To Dispensationalism by R.C. Kimbro, available from the Sovereign Grace Advent Testimony (SGAT) London.

Saturday, 14 July 2018

Samuel Rutherford (1600-1661) on Arminianism.

Arminianism, the name derived from its leading exponent James Arminius, exalts human nature and human reason at the expense of the glorious Being and attributes of God, and describes man as a free uncontrolled agent, independent of the plans, operations and mind of his Creator. "These sects," says Rutherford, preaching before the House of Commons in 1644, "are advocates of nature, and pleaders against the grace of God; thus constituting a King without a subject, and a Saviour without a ransomed people."

References to Arminianism will be found in nearly all of Rutherford's works, so dangerous and subtle was the heresy.

Briefly, Arminians believe and teach that Christ gave His life for all without exception (including those already perishing in hell before His incarnation), but that He cannot save all; that God is not able to save a man unless the man helps Him to, i.e. human works are needed in salvation; and that Christ may give saving grace to a sinner today, and withdraw it tomorrow, (or the sinner may 'lose' saving grace, and thus himself, tomorrow)- therefore there is no certainty that just because you are saved, you will be saved.

1. To begin with, "God (as Augustine saith) hath a greater dominion over our wills than we have over them ourselves;....otherwise He hath made a creature free-will, which is without the sphere of His own power; whereas the freest will of a king, the most sovereign and independent on earth must run in His channel, Prov. 21.1." (CHRIST DYING, page 365.)

Arminianism is "repugnant to His will, which is irresistible and cannot miss its end. 2. To His immutability, which cannot be compelled to take a second part, whereas He cannot fail the first. 3. To His omnipotency, who cannot be resisted. 4. To His happiness, who cannot come short of what His soul desires. 5. To His wisdom, who cannot aim at an end and desire it with its soul, and go about it by such means as He sees shall be utterly ineffectual, and never produce His end; and not use these means which He knoweth may, and infallibly doth, produce the same end in others." (CHRIST DYING. pg 513).

"It is safest to say, the only wise God decreed that sin should be. That the glory of His justice should appear in taking away sin, not in our way, but in the way of God." (COVENANT OF LIFE, pg 34).

"Absolute sovereignty shines in Adam's fall. So if a sparrow cannot stir its wings without God Matt. 10.29, nor a hair fall from our head, vs 30, far less could Adam fall without a single providence." ( COVENANT OF LIFE. pg 36).

It is clear from Scripture that Christ did not die with the intention of saving all of mankind. "The Scripture saith Christ died to gather His scattered children. John 17.9, to bring to God, 1 Pet. 3.18, these for whom He died, that they might have life, John 10.11, live to God, 2 Cor. 5.15, die to sin, 1 Peter 1.18, be delivered from this present evil world, Gal. 1.4. Here is our effectual intention; where is there a place for His dying with no effectual intention to bring any to God? And yet 'He died for all, good and evil, to make salvation possible', say they (Arminians)." (COVENANT OF LIFE, pg 237.)

In opposition to the Arminian (universalist) interpretation of John 1.29, Rutherford comments, "The word 'world' is the nations and Gentiles, and believers are elect of both Jews and Gentiles; John 3.16, God so loved the world. Rom. 11.12; if the the fall of them be the riches of the world, vs 15, If the casting away of them be the reconcilement  of the world....." (CHRIST DYING. pg 450).

Arminianism has invented a work of Christ which He did not do, and a gospel which Christ never proclaimed. It is "another gospel".

"I stand upon His merit,
I know no other stand,
Not ev'n where glory dwelleth,
In Immanuel's Land."

Quotes from;
CHRIST DYING AND DRAWING SINNERS (1647)
COVENANT OF LIFE OPENED (1655)

In this day, there are many self-styled Biblicists who deny that they are either Calvinists or Arminian, they would prefix a number to their liking, according to the petals of TULIP that they agree or disagree upon, sometimes even adding more! As C.H. Spurgeon said "I have my own private opinion that there is no such thing as preaching Christ and Him crucified, unless we preach what is nowadays called Calvinism. It is a nickname to call it Calvinism; Calvinism is the gospel, and nothing else." (my emphasis).
There is no 'halfway house' or any other point, in-between pre-destination/election and 'free-will', the 5-points stand or fall together. If one says he disagrees with Calvinistic (biblical) soteriology, and denies he is an Arminian free-willer, what he doesn't quite grasp is that he is Arminian by default.

But, for all this a man is saved entirely by God's sovereign grace alone.
Salvation "is the gift of God" Eph. 2.8 (my emphasis).
The elect were chosen "before the foundation of the world." Eph. 1.4 (my emphasis).
Nevertheless, Christ, and those moved by God's Holy Spirit to write in His written word preached one gospel, and that certainly wasn't the Arminian 'gospel'!


Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Antarctica, does it end?

The ice wall that surrounds our earth; known as the continent of Antarctica extends the entire 'circumference' of our known land mass called earth. God describes this vast continent in Job 38.22-23;

"Hast thou entered the treasuries of the snow, or hast thou seen the treasuries of the hail, Which I have reserved against the time of trouble, Against the day of battle and war?"

The coming "Day of battle and war" is described in Revelation 16.21;

"And there fell upon men a great hail out of heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent: and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was exceeding great."

The weight of a single talent is generally reckoned to be around 30 kg!

Job lived in "the land of Uz" Job 1.1. This land is to the east of Israel, and the book of Job is considered by scholars to be the oldest book in the Bible. The  setting is a semi desert region which is certainly not well known for snow and ice, especially in the quantities recorded in the aforementioned Scriptures!  There are more references to snow and ice in Job than any other in God's Book.

It is my belief that God gave Job an end times prophecy, one that the biblical geocentric position shines much needed light upon.This end-times hail storm is described as "exceeding great", and given the context of these words, will be world wide in scope.
*I believe that after much of the snow and ice has been dumped on the inhabited earth as prophesied in Rev. 16.21 we will see an increased land mass fit for human inhabitation. The coming millennial reign of Christ on earth will see an exponentially increased population-explosion  on earth, for men will live up to a 1000 years old as they did in the first 1000 years, and we will see the ultimate fulfillment of God's promise to Abraham; "I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore." Genesis 22.17.

Because I believe that the continent known as Antarctica is a land mass which encircles the earth, and is generally agreed by all to be a rather inhospitable region, then if  the above promise to Abraham is to come true (as it surely will!) then the millennial earth as described in Isaiah 11 & 65, will need to increase in size. Is it not true that the world's ungodly green movements support birth control (abortion)? for they are worried that the earth's land mass will not support the increasing population explosion.

*There is however, water "above the firmament", Genesis 1.7,and according to  Ezekiel 1.22; there is "the terrible crystal, stretched forth over their heads above." (over the heads of the "living creatures"). This "terrible crystal" in the RV margin is rendered ice, which would be above the firmament. The azure sky we see on a cloudless day, may well be this ice! So God is not short of ice when the prophecy of Rev.16.21 takes place!


Friday, 6 July 2018

Does God love everyone?

When well meaning, but gullible Christians go around saying that God loves everyone (generally quoted with perhaps the best known and most misappropriated Bible verse ever; John 3.16!). The well worn out reply is something akin to; "If your God loves everyone, why all the murders, disasters, and violence in the world?"

An astute answer, if you go around telling people that "God loves everyone"!!!

Of course, I realize that many will say that all the aforementioned problems are the fault of fallen man, and this is true, but nevertheless to tell the sinner that "God loves you"without first telling him that he must repent of his sins and believe in His Son's precious atoning blood unto salvation, is altogether...wrong! But, how does such an one know that he is a sinner, without first believing that he has offended his Maker? Obviously these Christians first need to tell the sinner the Commandments that he has broken! Romans 1.20 elucidates the fact that a man can know that God indeed does exist! they are not stupid! For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.  Could it be clearer? Paraphrasing A.W. Pink; "To tell an unbeliever that God loves the sinner, but hates the sin, is to cauterize his conscience and afford him a sense of security in his sins." He then goes on to say "that this is a meaningless distinction, for what is in a sinner, but sin?"
Surely, the correct way of going about it, would be to say "if you repent of your sins and believe on Christ's atoning blood unto salvation, then God will love you!" The Saviour said "If a man love Me, he will keep My words, and My Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him." John 14.23.

If God did love every single man, woman, and child that has been brought into this world since Adam and Eve, then what was ever the point of creating the abode of the damned, commonly known as hell? Why did the Saviour spend so much time warning of the place "Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched." Mark 9.44? This fire is "the everlasting fire" of Matt.25.41. Of course, there are liberal theologians and universalists who would teach us that the Lord didn't mean what He said, that "everlasting" has a terminus! Then what of "everlasting life", does that also not mean what it says?

In more biblically literate days, from the Reformation down to the mid 19th century when Darwinism was starting to do its worst, you couldn't imagine the puritans telling sinners "God loves you!" No, they first warned of "the wrath to come". But, such are the days we are in.

Gordon H. Clark said it right in 1969;

There are too few people who wish to understand even the simplest biblical teaching. This is not a theological age. Some writers say-that it is a post-Christian age. What is needed today is an exhortation to study the Bible.

Page 2. BIBLICAL PREDESTINATION

ISBN: 0-87552-137-1.

Sunday, 1 July 2018

Is God to blame?

Because of our many failed attempts of trying to save my late father in law who died last July (he was also a third generation free mason), my dear wife somehow tried to 'blame' God as it were, because he didn't yield to our witnessing. I have subsequently learnt that there is a notion among certain believers, that because the non-elect were not "chosen", that somehow it cannot be their fault that they couldn't be saved, for God never chose them in eternity past! They were not "predestinated" Rom. 8.29-30, Ep. 1.5, & 1.11. In other words they never had a 'chance' to believe and repent, that is they were reprobated to damnation. The correct approach to this dilemma is surely to look at it from the vantage point that none deserve to be saved in the first place, for as that old time preacher C.H. Spurgeon said; "are we not all criminals?" Divine wrath is surely the just desert of every child of Adam, for we inherited his fallen and sinful nature: Psalm 51.5; "Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me."
If it were not for God taking out of this world, or age, "a people for His name." Acts 15.14, we might well exclaim with the disciples; "Who then can be saved?" Matt.19.25, Mark 10.26, Luke 18.26. It is by God's sovereign electing grace alone that any man can be saved, for all "were dead in trespasses and sins" Ep. 2.1.

It is only incumbent on believers to witness (as pathetic as our best attempts most surely are!) to friends, relatives, and whoever else. The parable of the sower in Matt.13 teaches that it is not in ourselves to have the power to coerce, or convert a man to believe (as some think!). There is a Power from above, as taught by the incarnate Deity Himself in John 3.8; "The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou heareth the sound thereof, but canst not tell, whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is everyone that is born of the Spirit." The external convicting force as it were, is from above; it is not of man! Ever remember that God's word is a "hammer", Jer. 23.29! As C.H. Spurgeon so rightly said; "If by a man's charm one can become a convert, then another can come along with more charm and unconvert him. But when God the Holy Spirit does the converting, absolutely NONE can undo the conversion!"

I try not to become emotional about these deep things recorded in God's word, but rather only to believe, and write about "what is written".


Can we come to God of our own volition?

No man can come to Me, except the Father which hath sent Me DRAW him. John 6.44.

No  man can come unto Me, except it were GIVEN unto him of My Father. John 6.65.

You would think that these two God breathed verses would settle the matter once and for all, but apparently not! Did Jesus mean what He said when He uttered these words, or are they to be interpreted in a different way?

And WHOSOEVER will, let him take the water of life freely. Revelation 22.17.

Does this verse contradict the aforementioned verses?

There are no contradictions in God's Book, if there is something that doesn't "square-up" it is only because of our inability to understand what is being taught in the Scripture of Truth.

The Gospel call is universal, for the Scripture says, God "commandeth All men everywhere to repent." Acts 17.30. But why don't "all men everywhere repent"?

The great commission in Matthew 28.18-20 enjoins the disciples to "teach ALL the nations", as indeed Jesus confirmed to them in Acts 1.8; "ye shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and Samaria, and unto the uttermost parts of the earth." (RV).

So, how does the "whosoever will" in Rev. 22.17 come to Jesus? This is the crux of the matter!
clearly, as John 6.44 affirms, it is the Father that DRAWS him!

Is this so difficult to understand?





Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Matthew 10.29.


Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. (My emphasis).

I took this photo this morning. It is of a seagull as you can see; it comes every morning to tap on my kitchen window with it's beak asking for food! The verse under consideration teaches that even a sparrow cannot "fall on the ground" unless God has ordained it! for He is "upholding all things by the word of His power" Hebrews 1.3. Note, all things, not some things.
Many in Christendom are guilty of having "despised the day of small things" Zechariah 4.10. Believers, unless of course they believe in absolute pre-destination/election, tend to think that God is only involved in the big things, such as the nations in their perpetual striving with Israel, which we hear about everyday.

If you know anything about seagulls, you will know that they have many friends and relatives, and are generally regarded as pests, being especially aggressive when there is food about the place. I keep hens in the paddock beyond the fence in the window above, and feed them every morning, so this gull, must have figured out where the source of the food came from! It has been doing this for about a month now, but it is the only one (so far!), but being only yards from the coast, I was a little tentative about feeding it, because I don't want a gull invasion!
I can't figure out why God would direct this single gull to my window, other than to show me how he can control every living creature, such as "the great fish to swallow up Jonah"! (Jonah 1.17). Many marvel at the formation, and precision a flock of birds can fly in, as if it were but one bird, similar to the unison a shoal of fish will swim in. But what, or rather Who, is responsible for this common spectacle? The believer will find the answer in Hebrews 1.3!

It is my prayer that the Almighty won't send anymore than one seagull at a time to my window!