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Showing posts from January, 2010

A New Affection - Conclusion


The Application of the Gospel is Surest Means of Suitability for the Gospel

The object of the Gospel is both to pacify the sinner’s conscience, and to purify his heart; and it is of importance to observe, that what mars the one of these objects, mars the other also. The best way of casting out an impure affection is to admit a pure one; and by the love of what is good, to expel the love of what is evil. Thus it is, that the freer the Gospel, the more sanctifying is the Gospel; and the more it is received as a doctrine of grace, the more will it be felt as a doctrine according to godliness.

This is one of the secrets of the Christian life, that the more a man holds of God as a pensioner, the greater is the payment of service that he renders back again. On the tenure of “Do this and live,” a spirit of fearfulness is sure to enter; and the jealousies of a legal bargain chase away all confidence from the intercourse between God and man; and the creat…

A New Affection - Part Seven


The Gospel is Foolishness to Those Who View it Through Mortal Eyes and Reason

Now, it is altogether worthy of being remarked of those men who thus disrelish spiritual Christianity, and, in fact, deem it an impracticable acquirement, how much of a piece their incredulity about the demands of Christianity, and their incredulity about the doctrines of Christianity, are with one another. No wonder that they feel the work of the New Testament to be beyond their strength, so long as they hold the words of the New Testament to be beneath their attention. Neither they nor any one else can dispossess the heart of an old affection, but by the expulsive power of a new one – and, if that new affection be the love of God, neither they nor any one else can be made to entertain it, but on such a representation of the Deity, as shall draw the heart of the sinner towards Him.

Now it is just their unbelief which screens from the discernment of their minds this repr…

A New Affection - Part Six


It is Far Easier to Point out the Faults of the World, Than it is to Offer the Gospel

Thus may we come to perceive what it is that makes the most effective kind of preaching. It is not enough to hold out to the world’s eye the mirror of its own imperfections. It is not enough to come forth with a demonstration, however pathetic, of the evanescent character of all its enjoyments. It is not enough to travel the walk of experience along with you, and speak to your own conscience and your own recollection, of the deceitfulness of the heart, and the deceitfulness of all that the heart is set upon.

There is many a bearer of the Gospel message, who has not shrewdness of natural discernment enough, and who has not power of characteristic description enough, and who has not the talent of moral delineation enough, to present you with a vivid and faithful sketch of the existing follies of society. But that very corruption which he has not the faculty of repr…

A New Affection - Part Five


It is Not Enough to Understand the Worthlessness of the World; One Must Value the Worth of the Things of God

The love of the world cannot be expunged by a mere demonstration of the world’s worthlessness. But may it not be supplanted by the love of that which is more worthy than itself? The heart cannot be prevailed upon to part with the world, by a simple act of resignation. But may not the heart be prevailed upon to admit into its preference another, who shall subordinate the world, and bring it down from its wonted ascendancy?

If the throne which is placed there must have an occupier, and the tyrant that now reigns has occupied it wrongfully, he may not leave a bosom which would rather detain him than be left in desolation. But may he not give way to the lawful sovereign, appearing with every charm that can secure His willing admittance, and taking unto himself His great power to subdue the moral nature of man, and to reign over it? In a word, i…

A New Affection - Part Four


Even the Strongest Resolve is Not Enough to Dislodge an Affection by Leaving a Void

It will now be seen, perhaps, why it is that the heart keeps by its present affections with so much tenacity – when the attempt is, to do them away by a mere process of extirpation. It will not consent to be so desolated. The strong man, whose dwelling-place is there, may be compelled to give way to another occupier – but unless another stronger than he, has power to dispossess and to succeed him, he will keep his present lodgment inviolable. The heart would revolt against its own emptiness. It could not bear to be so left in a state of waste and cheerless insipidity. The moralist who tries such a process of dispossession as this upon the heart, is thwarted at every step by the recoil of its own mechanism. You have all heard that Nature abhors a vacuum. Such at least is the nature of the heart, that though the room which is in it may change one inmate for another,…

A New Affection - Part Three


The Overindulgence of Affections Produces Weariness of the World

The misery of a heart thus bereft of all relish for that which wont to minister enjoyment, is strikingly exemplified in those, who, satiated with indulgence, have been so belaboured, as it were, with the variety and the poignancy of the pleasurable sensations they have experienced, that they are at length fatigued out of all capacity for sensation whatever. The disease of ennui is more frequent in the French metropolis, where amusement is more exclusively the occupation of the higher classes, than it is in the British metropolis, where the longings of the heart are more diversified by the resources of business and politics.

There are the votaries of fashion, who, in this way, have at length become the victims of fashionable excess – in whom the very multitude of their enjoyments, has at last extinguished their power of enjoyment – who, with the gratifications of art and nature at com…

A New Affection - Part Two


A New Affection is More Successful in Replacing an Old Affection than Simply Trying to End it Without Supplanting it With Something Better

The ascendant power of a second affection will do, what no exposition however forcible, of the folly and worthlessness of the first, ever could effectuate. And it is the same in the great world. We shall never be able to arrest any of its leading pursuits, by a naked demonstration of their vanity. It is quite in vain to think of stopping one of these pursuits in any way else, but by stimulating to another. In attempting to bring a worldly man intent and busied with the prosecution of his objects to a dead stand, we have not merely to encounter the charm which he annexes to these objects – but we have to encounter the pleasure which he feels in the very prosecution of them. It is not enough, then, that we dissipate the charm, by a moral, and eloquent, and affecting exposure of its illusiveness. We must address…

A New Affection - Part One


“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” – 1 John ii. 15.

A Moralist Will be Unsuccessful in Trying to Displace His Love of the World by Reviewing the Ills of the World. Misplaced Affections Need to be Replaced by the Far Greater Power of the Affection of the Gospel.

THERE are two ways in which a practical moralist may attempt to displace from the human heart its love of the world – either by a demonstration of the world’s vanity, so as that the heart shall be prevailed upon simply to withdraw its regards from an object that is not worthy of it; or, by setting forth another object, even God, as more worthy of its attachment, so as that the heart shall be prevailed upon not to resign an old affection, which shall have nothing to succeed it, but to exchange an old affection for a new one.

My purpose is to show, that from the constitution of our nature, the forme…

Time to Lighten Up...

After three days of an intensive study of dispensational versus covenantal theology, I felt it was time to lighten up a bit and as I was thinking about my beloved's trip to California, I penned this little poem:

If the Lord Wills

My Sweetheart will be here tomorrow!
He'll step off the plane Sunday night.
“Yippy, Yahoo”, my heart will proclaim
When I see such a wonderful sight.

My Sweetheart will be here tomorrow!
I am filled with great joy as I wait
To see him again and kiss his sweet face--
I pray that his flight won’t be late.

My Sweetheart will be here tomorrow!
O’ hurry up Sunday and come.
I’ll hold him so close and squeeze him so tight
That even his toes might go numb.

My Sweetheart will be here tomorrow!
A thought that brings my heart thrills
And yet we both know, it will only come true
If it is what our precious Lord wills.

Does this sound biblically correct to you?

Question asked: If we are to proclaim the "whole counsel of God," why do you preach predominately from the New Testament?

Answer Given: Paul said that he was a minister of the new covenant. Since he was responsible to preach the new covenant, I think it is compelling for us to herald the new covenant, too. What we find then is that we must primarily preach Christ and herald the new covenant, which is New Testament literature, the mystery now unfolded that was hidden in the past.

At the same time, we draw on the illustrative material in the Old Testament. I think the Old Testament material can be summed up like this: First, it describes God. Then, it gives His law for life, His rules for righteous behavior. Third, it shows how God blesses those who obey, and fourth, how God punishes those who don't. The Old Testament also becomes the great source of illustrative material as we reach back to get some of the magnificence and fullness of God before the cross.

Another personal c…

Self Respecting?

As I read through A.W. Pinks "Study on Dispensationalism", the words of a well known and highly respected man kept ringing in my head. Words, that when I first heard them, I could 1) hardly believe that they would come out of his mouth (especially in a public forum filled with young pastors and leaders; 2) made the hair on the back of my neck instantly stand up; and 3) caused great concern to my soul. I am certain, after reading A.W. Pink, that he would have had the very same reaction. Let us listen to a short excerpt from A.W. Pink on this very topic:

But there is further reason, and a pressing one today, why we should write upon our present subject, and that is to expose the modern and pernicious error of Dispensationalism. This is a device of the Enemy, designed to rob the children of no small part of that bread which their heavenly Father has provided for their souls; a device wherein the wily serpent appears as an angel of light, feigning to "make the Bible a new bo…

On Marriage

Of all relationships of life, none ought to be regarded with such reverence, and none taken in hand so cautiously as the relationship of husband and wife. In no relationship is so much earthly happiness to be found, if it be entered upon discreetly, advisedly, and in the fear of God. In none is so much misery seen to follow, if it be taken in hand unadvisedly, lightly, wantonly, and without thought.

From no step in life does so much benefit come to the soul, if people marry "in the Lord." From none does the soul take so much harm, if fancy, passion, or any mere worldly motive is the only cause which produce the union.

There is, unhappily, only too much necessity for impressing these truths upon people. It is a mournful fact, that few steps in life are generally taken with so much levity, self will, and forgetfulness of God as marriage. Few are the young couples who think of inviting Christ to their wedding!

It is a mournful fact that unhappy marriages are one great cause of …