En Gedi: Finding rest in the wilderness!

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Archive for February, 2008

Voice of the Martyrs Update!

Posted by Scott on February 28, 2008

VOM-USA News & Prayer Update Visit: Persecution.com

Dear Brothers & Sisters in Christ,

“After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying, ‘Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.'” (Genesis 15:1)

Prayers for February 26, 2008
From The Voice of the Martyrs
Persecution.com
Pray for CHINA
CHINA 21 House Church Leaders Simultaneously Sentenced to Labor Camp – China Aid Association
China Aid Association (CAA) reports 21 senior house church leaders were recently simultaneously sentenced to a labor camp by the Linyi City Re-education Through Labor Commission. According to CAA, “The leaders were detained on December 7, 2007 when they gathered for leadership training with 249 other leaders in Hedong district, Linyi city, Shandong province. After paying fines and finishing detention ranging from a few days to a few weeks, 249 leaders were released. The 21 most senior leaders were sentenced to three years to one year and three months.” The Public Security Bureau has accused and labeled the house church leaders as “evil cult” members. Of the 21 leaders sent to the labor camp, 12 are men and four are women. Pray for these believers and their families during this difficult time. Ask God to protect and encourage them. Pray they will be a good witness of Christ’s love to other prisoners and their captors. Psalm 27:1

Pray for SRI LANKA
SRI LANKA Pastor Killed, Wife in Seriously Injured in Attack – National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka
On February 17, Pastor Neil Edirisinghe, of the House Church Foundation, was gunned down by two assailants outside his home in Ampara, Sri Lanka. According to a report by the National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka (NCEASL), “Pastor Edirisinghe was engaged in the Lord’s ministry in Ampara for many years. The attackers also shot his wife in the stomach. At last report, she was in the hospital in critical condition. Their two-year-old son who received a minor injury in the attack is also suffering from trauma.” NCEASL added the motive for the attacks was believed to be in response to Pastor Edirisinghe’s ministry. The Voice of the Martyrs is assisting the family during this difficult time. Pray for peace and comfort for Pastor Edirisinghe’s family. Pray for a speedy recovery for his wife and child and for them to rely on the great Comforter, the Holy Spirit. Isaiah 40:31, Psalm 107:2

Pray for GAZA
GAZA YMCA Library Bombed – VOM Sources
On February 16, unidentified assailants bombed the library of the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) compound in the Shajaiyeh neighborhood of Gaza city. According to VOM sources, shortly after midnight, at least 12 gunmen entered the YMCA compound and kidnapped two guards at gunpoint after asking them why they worked for “infidels.” The men stormed the building and detonated two homemade explosive devices inside the library. All 8,000 books in the library were destroyed and the floor, walls and ceiling were damaged. The attackers stole computers and other equipment from other YMCA offices. No one has claimed responsibility for the attack. . However, sources in Gaza reportedly believe that the perpetrators were Muslim militants acting in response to the reproduction of cartoons “ridiculing” Muhammad in a number of Danish newspapers last week. Praise God no one was injured in this attack. Ask God to protect and give wisdom to believers in Gaza. Pray the attackers will come into contact with the grace and love of Jesus Christ. Joshua 1:9

Pray for ETHIOPIA
ETHIOPIA Christian Couple Beaten and Chased From Mosque – VOM Sources
On February 10, Muslin Christian converts, Jemmal Abdo and his wife, were beaten and chased out from a mosque where they both worked in the capital city of Addis Ababa. According to The Voice of the Martyrs contacts, “Jemmal and his wife accepted Christ two months ago. Soon after their conversion Jemmal’s friend saw him talking with Christians and told the imam of the mosque. Jemmal and his wife were interrogated in the mosque during a meeting called by Muslim leaders in an attempt to persuade the couple to recant their faith. The couple refused to do so, even after the leaders offered them higher positions and salaries if they denied Christ. The couple was beaten and dragged out of the mosque.” Jemmal and his wife were able to flee to a new location for safety. Pray for the speedy recovery for Jemmal and his wife, who were injured in the attack. Ask God to strengthen them and provide for them as they stand strong in their new found faith in Jesus Christ. Isaiah 54:17

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The Need for the Truth!

Posted by Scott on February 28, 2008

by Ray C. Stedman

READ: Ecclesiastes 12:9-12

The words of the wise are like goads, their collected sayings like firmly embedded nails—given by one Shepherd (Ecclesiastes 12:11).

Solomon describes the value of Scripture: it is like a “goad.” It makes you go where you would not ordinarily go; it delivers you by prodding you along.

I remember a man who was in the grip of a terrible depression for more than a year. But he was delivered by daily meditating on a simple statement he found in Scripture, the words of Jesus, “Not my will, but yours be done” (Luke 22:42). Meditating on that day after day goaded him and urged him to think about his life in those terms. He was brought out of his depression within a relatively short time and never returned to it again.

Scripture is also a “firmly embedded nail.” You can hang onto it in times of danger and temptation. Once in my own life when I was severely troubled of heart, one phrase from Jesus came into my mind again and again. It was where Jesus said to His disciples, “Let not your hearts be troubled” (John 14:1a RSV). I was especially gripped by those two words, “Let not.” They said to me that a troubled heart in the believer is subject to the will of that believer. He can let his heart be troubled, or he can let it not be troubled. The ground for letting it not be troubled is in the words that immediately follow: Jesus said, “Believe in God, believe also in me” (John 14:lb RSV). When the realization struck me that my living Lord was there, with wisdom and power to handle the situation, I felt the lifting of my heart’s load. That is the power of Scripture.

Why does it have this unique power? The reason, according to verse 11, is because “their collected sayings… [are] given by one Shepherd.” These are inspired, God-breathed words. The heart of God is the heart of a shepherd; He sees us as wandering sheep in need of a shepherd’s care. The fact that the Lord is our shepherd is probably the reason the shepherds of Bethlehem were chosen to be the first men to hear the wonderful words of the angels: “Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11). But in the hope that was awakened on that Christmas morning, there was the realization that the One who was born in the manger was the One of whom it was said, “the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:6b).

“Be warned, my son, of anything in addition to [the words of the wise],” the Searcher says (Ecclesiastes 12:11). This is the word of wisdom to searchers for knowledge: “Of making many books there is no end” (Ecclesiastes 12:12). It is right to read and search and know and learn. But beware of letting this take you beyond the simple fact that this book so clearly declares, that God is the answer to the reason for existence. Until we discover Him, study and books will never be of any continuing value to us.

Thank You for Your Word, dear Lord. May I allow it to function in my life as a goad that prods me towards You, as a firmly fixed nail I can hang onto, given by You, the Great Shepherd.

This daily devotion was inspired by one of Ray’s sermons. Please read “Before It’s Too Late” (or listen to the audio file  Listen to Ray) for more on this portion of scripture.

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Post Modernism and the Emergent Church Movement…..!

Posted by Scott on February 28, 2008

To turn off the music on this site just scroll down on the left hand side and click on the button to the left of the music screen.  This will allow you to see and hear these two videos! 

This is a great You Tube video with Dr. Mohler Jr, Dr. R.C. Sproul, and Dr. Ravi Zacharia on the Post Modernism and the Emergent Church movement. 

 

 

The roots of the Emergent Church and “Relevance” by the late Francis Schaffer:

 

 

Why do I keep posting on this heresy movement?  If I am to speak truth on this blog and help dads, husbands and men in general the truth must be spoken.  Each dad, husband and man needs to be doctrinally sound and not swayed back and forth by this Emergent Movement or heresy as it really is.  So, I post what I know and that of anyone else that has the truthful biblical take on this.  Guys, the most important thing you can do for your family and friends is to stay very close to the Word of God in all of its glory…if you will focus on the spiritual aspect of your own life and stick to the truths of old and teach this to your wife, children, family, and friends…then you will succeed in this life and be prepared for our life eternally.

“People get so used to the dark that they think it is growing brighter.

It is possible to fraternize with unbelievers until false doctrine becomes less and less objectionable.”

-Vance Havner

-Scott Bailey 2008

 

 

 

 

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God’s Providence Q & A!

Posted by Scott on February 28, 2008

The Shorter Catechism
of the Westminster Assembly
Explained and Proved
from Scripture
by
Thomas Vincent


XI. Ques. What are God’s works of providence?
Ans. God’s works of providence are his most holy, wise, and powerful preserving and governing all his creatures, and all their actions.

Q. 1. What are the parts of God’s providence?
A. The parts of God’s providence are—1. His preservation of things. “O Lord, thou preservest man and beast.” — Ps. 36:6. 2. His government of things. “Thou shalt govern the nations upon the earth.”— Ps. 67:4.

Q. 2. What is it for God to preserve things?
A. God preserveth things—1. When he continueth and upholdeth them in their being. “O Lord, thy word is settled in heaven; thou hast established the earth, and it abideth; they continue this day according to thine ordinances.”— Ps. 119:89-91. 2. When he maketh provision of things needful for their preservation. “The eyes of all wait upon thee, and thou givest them their meat in due season. Thou openest thine hand, and satiafiest the desire of every living thing.”— Ps. 145:15-16.

Q. 3. What is it for God to govern things?
A. God governeth things when he ruleth over them, disposeth and directeth them to his and their end. “He ruleth by his power for ever, his eyes behold the nations; let not the rebellious exalt themselves.”— Ps/ 66:7. “A man’s heart deviseth his way, but the Lord directeth his steps.”— Prov. 16:9.

Q. 4. What is the subject of God’s providence?
A. The subject of God’s providence is—1. All his creatures, especially his children. “Upholding all things by the word of his power.”— Heb. 1:3. “His kingdom ruleth over all.”— Ps. 103:19. “One sparrow falleth not to the ground without your Father;— ye are of more value than many sparrows.”— Matt. 10:29, 31. “Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: and if God clothe the grass of the field, shall he not much more clothe you ?”— Matt. 6:26, 28, 30. 2. All the actions of his creatures. (1.) All natural actions. “In him we live and move.”— Acts 17:28. (2.) All morally good actions. “Without me ye can do nothing” — John 15:5); that is, nothing that is good. (3.) All casual actions. “He that smiteth a man that he die, and lie not in wait, but God deliver him into his hand, I will appoint thee a place whither he shall flee.”— Exod. 21:12-13. (4.) All morally evil actions or sins.

Q. 5. How doth God’s providence reach sinful actions?
A. 1. God doth permit men to sin. “Who in time past suffered all nations to walk in their own ways.”— Acts 14:16. “These things hast thou done, and I kept silence.”— Ps. 50:21. 2. God doth limit and restrain men in their sins. “The remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain.”— Ps. 76:10. “Because thy rage against me is come up into my ears, therefore I will put my hook into thy nose, and my bridle in thy lips, and I will turn thee back,” &c. — 2 Kings 19:28. 3. God doth direct and dispose men’s sins to good ends, beyond their own intentions. “O Assyrian, the rod of mine anger, I will send him against an hypocritical nation,” (namely, to chastise it for its sin) “howbeit he meaneth not so, neither doth his heart think so,” &c.— Isa. 10:5-7 “But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to save much people alive.”— Gen. 50:20.

Q. 6. What are the properties of God’s providence?
A. 1. God’s providence is most holy. “The Lord is righteous in all his ways, and holy in ail his works.”— Ps. 145:17. 2. God’s providence is most wise. “O Lord, how manifold are thy works?” (speaking of the works of providence, as well as creation) “in wisdom hast thou made them all”— Ps. 104:24. 3. God’s providence is most powerful. “He doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth, and none can stay his hand.”— Dan. 4:35. “He ruleth by his power for ever.”— Ps. 66:7.

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The Only Deliverer from the Wrath to Come…JESUS CHRIST!

Posted by Scott on February 27, 2008

Or

The Way To Escape The Horrible And Eternal Burnings Of Hell


by
Thomas Vincent
Minister of Magdalene, Milk Street
London


“Even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.”
1 Thessalonians 1:10


Past pains may easily be forgotten; future pains are not easily believed; present pains in extremity are so grievous and afflicting that all the wealth and honor in the world cannot countervail them. And, oh, how welcome is such a physician Who can give ease and remove them! But if people believingly apprehended what horrible pains and torments the wicked must endure in the unquenchable flames of hell fire, where they can have no ease, and their misery shall have no end; if they apprehended how fearful a thing it is to fall into the hands of the living God, and to be swallowed up by His wrath, which pursues all who are out of Christ, and which will certainly come and may quickly seize upon them, surely they would use their utmost diligence now to escape—surely they would, with the greatest inquisitiveness, seek out a place of refuge from the fiery tempest of God’s vengeance!This text, which makes a revelation of the only Deliverer from the wrath to come, would sound with most transcendent sweetness in their ears; and the glad tidings thereof, concerning what Jesus has done for His people, would, above all things, be most welcome in their hearts. “Even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.”

In the former verse, the apostle tells the Thessalonians what manner of entrance he had at first among them, and what the great effect of his ministry was upon them, namely that they were converted thereby, which conversion he sets forth:

  1. By the nature of it: they were turned from dead idols, the lying vanities which they worshipped and served before, unto the living and true God, to worship and serve Him.
  2. By the consequence of it, which was their waiting for the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ from heaven. And here he shows:

    First, the evidence of this second coming: it will certainly be, namely by God’s raising Him from the dead and receiving Him into heaven.    Second, the ground of their hope and comforting expectation, and waiting for this coming in the text: because this Jesus had delivered them from the wrath to come. The wicked, if awakened, look for Christ’s second coming with dread and fearful expectation because of the wrath which He will bring with Him, because He will come in flaming fire to take vengeance upon them. The righteous, if assured of their interest in Christ, look for Christ’s second coming with gladness and joyful expectation because He has delivered them from the wrath to come. “Even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.”

The doctrine, then, is plainly set forth in the words of the text:
DOCTRINE: It is Jesus who delivers from the wrath to come.
In handling this point I shall show:

1. What this wrath is which is to come;
2. That this wrath is to come;
3. Upon whom this wrath will come;
4. When this wrath will come;
5. Who this Jesus is who delivers from wrath to come;
6. How Jesus delivers from wrath to come;
7. How any do or may have a share in this deliverance by Jesus from wrath to come;
Then I shall make some use and application.

1. What this wrath is which is to come.
It is not the finite wrath of the most furious and fierce creatures; it is not the wrath of lions, bears, tigers, wolves, or wild bulls; it is not the wrath of the most potent and tyrannical men, who may exceed all these in ferocity and cruelty. Neither is it the wrath of the devil, whose wrath is great here on earth when let loose to tempt and deceive, but most furiously will express itself hereafter in hell when he is let loose as God’s executioner to torment the wicked. But by “the wrath to come” we are to understand the infinite wrath of the sin-avenging God, in comparison with which the wrath of all other creatures in the world is mild, and not in the least to be regarded.
We read in the Scripture of the wine of God’s wrath (Revelation 14:10), that this wine is red (Psalm 75:8). We read of the vials of God’s wrath (Revelation 16:1), of the cup of God’s wrath (Revelation 14:10), of the winepress of God’s wrath (Revelation 14:19). We read of the treasures of God’s wrath (Romans 2:5), of the vessels of God’s wrath (Romans 9:22). By “the wine of God’s wrath” we are to understand those plagues and punishments which God does and will inflict upon the wicked for their sins. By “the redness of the wine” is meant the dreadfulness of those plagues. By “the vials of God’s wrath” we mean some smaller plagues and temporal punishments on earth. By “the cup of God’s wrath” we mean especially the dregs and bottom of it, the greater plagues and eternal punishments of hell. By “the winepress of God’s wrath” we are to understand the place where the wicked shall be punished. By “the treasures of God’s wrath” we are to understand the abundance of plagues; by “the vessels of wrath,” the damned who are appointed to undergo these plagues and torments. These vessels God will fill with the measures of His wrath. He will fill them to the brim in hell with the most exquisite torments.

And this is the wrath which is to come, which will be most bitter, beyond any gall or wormwood to the taste. This wrath will be most pure, without any allay or mixture of any comfortable ingredients. This wrath will be most plentiful, the treasures of which will be opened in hell, and all the damned will be filled with it abundantly. It will be most weighty, beyond any mountain of lead, to sink sinners down into the bottomless pit. It will be most fierce, and so powerful that all the powers of men and devils shall not be able to make the least resistance. It will be intolerable, and yet must be borne; it will be implacable, so as never to be appeased; and it will be eternal, so as never to be ended.

Plainly, the wrath to come. is the same as the punishment of hell, the great effect of the wrath of God. This punishment has two parts: the punishment of loss and the punishment of sense.

The punishment of loss will consist of the loss of the crown, glory, and happiness of heaven, where the righteous shall be admitted to the immediate vision and full fruition of God the chief good, which will fill them with soul-ravishing, inconceivable, and eternal joy. But from this all the wicked will be eternally shut out, and wholly denied any share in the least of that happiness which, when they come to understand the worth and excellency of it, will above all things be most vexing to them.

The punishment of sense will consist in the horrible pains and tortures which shall in extreme measure be inflicted upon every part of the bodies of all. the wicked by the most dreadful and unquenchable fire into which they shall be thrown, and the horrible anguish which, through the immediate impressions of God’s wrath, shall be inflicted upon every faculty of their souls in hell, where they shall have no ease or release forever. Matthew 25:41: “Depart from Me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.” Revelation 14:10-11: “The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation, and shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the ‘Smoke of their torment ascendeth up forever and ever, and they have no rest day or night.” See more of this in my book Christ’s Sudden and Certain Appearance To Judgment, [published by Soli Deo Gloria] and in the first part of this book Fire and Brimstone.

2. This wrath of God is to come, which implies two things: the wrath is not yet come, and it certainly will come.

First, the wrath of God has not yet come. Had it already come, who could have stood before it? Who could deliver from it? Where it seizes, it crushes and it burns, and that worse than any fire. Where it seizes, it holds and never lets go its hold. But, as it has not yet come, some sparks of this fire may be let fall in temporal judgments upon sinners in this life; but what are temporal judgments in comparison to eternal ones? In this world, God exercises His patience towards the wicked. He is angry with them, and His anger smokes against them; but He withholds His wrath from breaking forth into a flame, which would quickly devour all the wicked of the earth should He give way to it and let it loose upon them. Indeed, we read in John 3:36 that the wrath of God abides upon unbelievers; that is, it shall abide upon those who at last are found in a state of unbelief as surely as if it already were abiding on them; or, the wrath of God abides upon unbelievers, that is, the sentence of condemnation unto this wrath abides upon them. John 3:18: “He that believeth not is condemned already.” Indeed, it is said of the persecuting Jews who had killed the Lord Jesus and their own prophets, and had forbidden the apostles to preach to the Gentiles, that “the wrath was come upon them to the uttermost” (I Thessalonians 2:15-16). But we are to understand it thus: the wrath of God was come upon them to the uttermost not in regard to eternal judgments, but in regard to spiritual judgments, it being the expression of God’s wrath here to give sinners up to a persecuting spirit which prepares them for the uttermost and most dreadful punishments of hell hereafter. But as yet the wrath of God has not yet come; none in this world does or can know the power of God’s anger. Second, the wrath of God is to come, that is, it will certainly come; there are some things which may, come, such and such temporal judgments may come, such and such deliverances may come, but there are some things which will come. Death will come, Christ will come, and, as certainly as death and Christ will come, so certainly this wrath of God will come. God has foretold it; and heaven and earth shall pass away, but not one jot or tittle of what God has foretold until it is fulfilled. God has threatened it, and, God is not more faithful in His promises to His people than He is true in His threatenings to His enemies. God’s justice engages Him to send it, which can be satisfied in no other way by those who have no interest in the satisfaction of Christ.

The wicked are vessels fitted by sin for destruction and prepared for wrath; and therefore they shall be filled with it, even as the vessels of mercy are fitted for and shall be filled with glory. God has treasured up wrath for the wicked as they have treasured up sin; and God will give them that which they, have so much deserved, and which He has prepared for them. However sinners may escape this wrath for a while, and vainly hope to flee or hide themselves from the stroke of God’s vengeance, yet God’s right hand will find all those who hate Him; and He will make them as a fiery oven in the time of His anger, swallow them up in His wrath, and devour them with the fire of His indignation (Psalm 21:8-9).

Whom this wrath will come upon.
First, the wrath of God will come upon all the children of disobedience. Colossians 3:5-6: “Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth, fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry; for which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience.” Such are children of disobedience who are disobedient children, such as do not yield obedience unto the law of God, but live in and allow themselves the practice of known sins, and the neglect of known duties; they are such as are under the power of reigning sin, who are willing servants of sin, who yield up their members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin (Romans 6:13), who serve divers lusts (Titus 3:3), and who make provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof (Romans 13:14). They are such as are blasphemers, swearers, Sabbath-breakers, murderers, adulterers, drunkards, thieves, covetous, unrighteous, extortioners, revilers, scoffers at religion, persecutors of God’s people, or who have an enmity to the power of godliness; such as are proud and boasters, such as are disobedient to parents without natural affection, such as are lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God, such as are liars and unfaithful, such as are idle and slothful, such as live in envy and malice, such as are given to revenge and cannot forgive injuries, and other like sinners—all children of disobedience upon whom the wrath of God will come. Ephesians 5:6: “Let no man deceive you with vain words, for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.”

Let none deceive you with vain words, neither deceive yourselves with vain thoughts, as if you might escape the wrath of God although you live in the practice of such and such sins. See how vain and groundless the, security of such persons is. Deuteronomy 29:18-20: “Lest there be among you a root that beareth gall and wormwood; and it come to pass, when he heareth the words of this curse, that he blesseth himself in his heart, saying, ‘I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of my heart, to add drunkenness to thirst.’ The Lord will not spare him, but then the anger of the Lord and His jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and the Lord shall blot out his name from under heaven.” Moreover, we read in Galatians 3:10: “Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.”

Such as are guilty of any transgression of the law (while out of Christ) are under the curse, and liable to God’s wrath. Hebrews 2:2: “Every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense of reward.” Hence it is that the children of disobedience are called children of wrath (Ephesians 2:2-3).

Second, the wrath of God will come upon all hypocrites; it is more peculiarly appropriated unto them as their portion. Matthew 24:51: “He shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” Whoever, escapes God’s wrath, hypocrites shall not escape; whoever is pardoned, hypocrites shall be punished: such as have a form of godliness, but deny the power thereof; such as make some outward show of reformation, but are without inward transformation; such as are like painted sepulchres, fair and beautiful without, but within are full of rottenness; such as make it their great business to appear religious, and take no care to be religious, but are rotten at heart and cover carnal designs with a cloak of profession. As their sin is most offensive unto God here, so His wrath will certainly come upon them with the greatest severity hereafter.

Third, the wrath of God will come upon all impenitent and unbelieving persons. Luke 13:3: “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” Mark 16:16: “He that believeth not shall be damned.” Repentance and faith are two great duties of the gospel, and wrath is particularly threatened to such as do not obey the gospel; to such God will render indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish (Romans 2:8-9). And Christ will come in flaming fire to take vengeance upon them (2 Thessalonians 1:8). Such as are impenitent and unbelieving neglect the salvation of the gospel which, by faith in Christ alone, is attainable; sinning against the only remedy, they cannot escape. Hebrews 2:3: “How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation?”

4. When this wrath of God will come.
First, the wrath of God will come in part upon the wicked immediately, after the separation of their souls from their bodies. The souls of the wicked, as soon as they are loosened by death from the ruinous habitation of their bodies, presently appear before God, are condemned to hell, and are dragged by the devil, hell’s jailer, into that prison where they are bound in chains of darkness, filled with horror and anguish until the day of eternal judgment. The Scripture tells us of disobedient spirits thrown into prison (1 Peter 3:19-20).

Second, the wrath of God will come in fully upon all the wicked together at the last day, called “the day of judgment” and “the perdition of the ungodly” (2 Peter 3:7). When the Lord Jesus shall come to judge the world, He will bring the treasures of God’s wrath with Him and render unto all the wicked that wrath and vengeance which is their due. Therefore this day is called “the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God” (Romans 2:5). This will be a dreadful day unto the wicked, when the heavens shall pass away with a great noise and, like a scroll, be rolled together; the elements shall melt with fervent heat and be dissolved. It shall be a day when the sun shall become black as sackcloth, and the moon become like blood; when the powers of heaven shall be shaken and the stars shall fall from heaven to the earth like figs from a tree when it is shaken with a mighty wind; when there shall be thunderings exceedingly loud, and lightnings and tempests exceedingly horrid; when the last trumpet shall sound and a mighty shout shall come down from above’ and awaken all the sinners who are asleep in the dust; when Christ the great judge of the world shall come forth from His Father’s house and make His appearance in the world with millions of mighty angels, and all the saints at His right hand clothed with majesty and brightness of glory; when the wicked shall come forth from their graves. As soon as they shall open their eyes they shall see heaven and earth on fire about their ears, and the Lord Jesus coming towards them in flaming fire to take vengeance upon them; as soon as they open their ears they shall hear the dreadful trumpet and shout in the air, and the howling and lamentations of all their fellow sinners about them upon the earth.

Oh, the dread and confusion which the wicked then shall be filled with when they are summoned and dragged to the tribunal seat of Christ, and there have the books opened before them where all their sins are written, and which will then be made manifest to the whole world; and when the sentence “Depart, ye cursed, into everlasting fire” shall be passed upon them; and when the Lord shall open the treasures of wrath to them, and give them that portion thereof which is their due; and when they shall see the mouth of hell open beneath them, and a horrible flame issuing forth from there, giving notice of a more horrible fire within which is prepared for them-oh, the dread! Oh, the shrieks! Who can dwell with such devouring fire! Who can inhabit such everlasting burnings! How welcome would a great rock or mountain be if they could find any that would fall upon them, and hide them from the wrath of the Lamb, and keep off the strokes of God’s vengeance, which then will be inflicted upon them!

But, the sentence being pronounced, the execution will follow, and none can escape it. From Christ’s tribunal seat, the wicked will be thrown into the fiery prison of hell, where they will be shut down and shut in, and that forever. There they will lie; there they will fry, and there they will cry; though always dying, they will never die. The fire there will burn most dreadfully and continually, and will never be extinguished. The wicked will be tormented there in every part and in extreme measure, and their torment will never be ended.

5. Who this Jesus is who delivers from wrath to come.
In the text He is called “Jesus,” and the reason for this name we find in Matthew 1:21: “Thou shalt call His name Jesus, for He shall save His people from their sins.” This Jesus is God and man in one person. He is the eternal Son of God, of the same essence with the Father, equal to Him in power and glory, who before the world was appointed in time to be the Redeemer of mankind; and when the fullness of time had come, He took upon Himself a true, human body and soul. He was conceived by the Holy Ghost, was born of a lowly virgin, lived in a lowly condition, was owned by a voice from heaven to be the only begotten and beloved Son of God. He preached the glad tidings of salvation to sinners, confirmed His doctrine by many miracles, died for the salvation of sinners (that being the cursed death of the cross), was raised up the third day, appeared to His disciples after His resurrection, and, after forty days, in the sight of many,, ascended up to heaven where now He is at the right hand of God, making intercession for us.

6 How Jesus delivers from the wrath of God to come.
First, by His death, whereby He has purchased deliverance, having hereby satisfied God’s justice. In His death, and in our place, Jesus underwent that punishment which our sins deserved. His body was nailed to the cross, which was an accursed death, and His soul was afflicted with the immediate impressions of God’s wrath, which was so weighty and grievous that any mere creature would have sunk under it. But He, being God and man, bore up and broke through and got loose from the bands of death. The dignity of His person put a merit on His sufferings, especially the eternal compact or agreement between Him and His Father being such, and so became a sufficient satisfaction to justice, and that was accepted as fully as if sinners had done it in their own persons. We read that Jesus Himself “bore our sins in His body on the tree” (1 Peter 2:24); that “He gave His life a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:28); that we are “redeemed with His blood” (1 Peter 1:18-19); that we are “reconciled through His death” (Romans 5:10). Jesus delivers from wrath by His death, having therein undergone it Himself in place of His people.

Second, by His intercession, Christ delivers from wrath to come. Having offered up Himself as a sacrifice to satisfy divine justice for sin, He pleads the merit of it at the right hand of God on behalf of sinners for their redemption. He is called not only our Surety, to satisfy for us (Hebrews 7:22), but also our Advocate, to plead for us (1 John 2:1). Our deliverance from wrath to come, the damnation and punishment of hell, proceeds not only from Christ’s death, whereby He has purchased it, but also from His intercession, whereby He effectually accomplishes and obtains it. And therefore the apostle joins both together in the procurement of freedom from condemnation. Romans 8:34: “Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea, rather, is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.” And upon this account He is said to be able to save unto the uttermost. Hebrews 7:25: “Wherefore He is able to save them to the uttermost, that do come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them.”

Third, by His mission, or sending His Spirit to effectually call people to Himself, Jesus brings them into a state of salvation, and gives them an actual interest in this deliverance, which He has purchased for them. This leads to the next particular. 7. How any do or may have a share in this deliverance by Jesus from the wrath to come.
This is by faith in Jesus Christ, which is wrought by His Spirit in effectual calling. It occurs when the Lord, by His Spirit, opens the eyes of sinners, convinces them of the guilt and evil of their sins, awakens their consciences, and works contrition and a sense of their misery and danger; and when the Lord shows and persuades them how utterly unable they are to save themselves’ that no reformation or righteousness of their own, which either they have or can attain unto, can procure deliverance from wrath for them and, withal, that no mere creature in the world is able to help in this case; and when the Lord by His Spirit reveals Himself as the only Savior and all-sufficient one, who is most willing to save and deliver them, and withal most powerfully and irresistibly and yet most sweetly bows their wills, and inclines them to choose Him for their Savior, and, grieving for sin and renouncing their own righteousness, to rest themselves upon Him for salvation. And this, accompanied with a free and resolved delivering up of themselves to His teaching and government, is effectual calling.

Herein the Lord, by His Spirit, draws and lays hold on sinners, and enables them by faith to lay hold on Him, and hence arises their union to Christ and interest in Christ. And they come to have a share in the deliverance by Christ from wrath to come.

When the jailer cried out with trembling to Paul and Silas, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” the direction given him was, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved” (Acts 16:30-31). It is faith that gives an interest in Christ, and hereby an interest in the deliverance which He has purchased. It is faith that unites us to Christ, whereby we are said to be in Him, and there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8: 1). We are justified by faith (Romans 5:1), and so are absolved from the guilt of sin and all obligation to punishment. The Lord Jesus Christ, having fully satisfied God’s justice for our sins by His death in our place, and this being imputed to us through faith, and accounted as if we had done it ourselves (as a surety’s paying our debt is accounted by the creditor as if we had paid it), we are acquitted, and no more exposed to the wrath of God and punishment of hell than if we had never committed any one sin to deserve it.

USE OF INFORMATION
1. See here the worth of Jesus. He is the Deliverer, and the only Deliverer from wrath to come. Jesus Christ is a person of the greatest worth in Himself; the divine and human natures, being united in Him, render Him infinitely glorious and altogether lovely. And hence it is that He is replenished with such transcendent excellencies and perfection as are not to be found again in any creature, either in earth or heaven. Jesus Christ is esteemed to be the most worthy person by those who know Him and understand what real worth is, especially sinners, when awakened, and made sensible of the curse which lies upon them for sin, and the wrath of God which hangs over them. And when they come to apprehend how fearful a thing it is to fall under the strokes of God’s vengeance, and see no way of escape but by Jesus, the only Deliverer from future wrath, then, of all persons and things in the world, Jesus Christ is most precious to them. Never did there appear in the world a person of such high dignity, of such admirable beauty and such wonderful love as the Lord Jesus Christ, who came down from the Father and clothed Himself with our nature that He might become our Savior, Redeemer, Surety, and Advocate, and that He might deliver us from wrath to come.

2. See here the value of Christ’s death. Hebrews 9:22: “Without shedding of blood, there is no remission of sin.” And if there is no remission, then there is no deliverance from wrath to come; if guilt remains, punishment will ensue, and that of God’s eternal wrath in hell. It was not the blood of bulls and goats sacrificed under the law that could remove guilt and procure remission of sin. Hebrews 0:4: “For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sin.” But it was through Christ’s sacrifice of Himself once for all, and shedding His blood upon the cross, that remission of sins and, by consequence, this deliverance from wrath to come were purchased. It was not thousands of rams, or ten thousand rivers of oil, or all the treasures of the earth that could have procured remission of sin, because all this would have been no satisfaction unto God’s justice; but the blood of Jesus, who is God-man, has satisfied God’s justice. By His death, Christ has paid the full price which was due for sin. Surely, then, His death is of greater value than the riches of ten thousand worlds, were there that many.

3. Here see the excellency of faith. We read in Peter’s first epistle of a precious Christ (2:7), and of Christ’s precious blood (1:19), and also of precious faith (1:7). Of all other graces, faith is called precious, and it has above other graces a peculiar excellence; not so much in respect to itself, but in regard to, its object, as it gives interest in the precious Christ and makes application of His precious blood. By this, we come to attain a share in this deliverance y Christ from wrath to come. Christ is most precious as the Author of our deliverance; Christ’s death is most precious as the merit of our deliverance; and faith is most precious as the instrument of our deliverance.

4. Here see what a privilege it is to have the gospel preached among us. The gospel is a means to make discovery unto us of Jesus Christ, the only Deliverer from wrath to come, and also a means to work faith in us, which comes by hearing (Romans 10:17). Hereby alone we come to have interest in Jesus Christ and His deliverance. Such as are without the gospel are in darkness and unbelief, and are hastening forward towards the regions of eternal darkness; and they do not know where they are going. It is of more use to have the light of the gospel than to have the light of the sun; and the total removal of this light is a greater judgment than any temporal calamity, since it is the means to prevent eternal misery.

USE OF EXAMINATION
Is Jesus the only Deliverer from wrath to come? It concerns all of you, then, to examine yourselves as to whether you have an interest in this Jesus, and the deliverance from wrath which He has purchased, and which is through Him alone to be obtained. All of you are sinners. You were born in sin, you have lived in sin, and, should you die in sin, as certainly as the guilt of sin lies upon you, so certainly will the wrath of God come upon you. Without an interest in Jesus Christ, there can be no escaping for you. You may know whether you have an interest in Jesus Christ by your faith, by your life, by your love, by your likeness, and by your obedience.
1. If you have an interest in Jesus Christ, then you have faith. I don’t mean a historical faith, only believing the history and report which the gospel gives of Jesus Christ, what He has done and suffered. Nor do I mean a temporary faith, which is the fond presumption of some formal hypocrites, whereby they may seem to cleave unto Christ when, indeed, their hearts cleave chiefly to sin; whereby, through misapprehension of gospel privileges, and misapplication of gospel promises, they may attain to some kind of fleshly love and joy, which endures but a while (it usually ends in open apostasy). But if you have a true interest in Christ, you have a true, justifying faith whereby, being first convinced of sin, humbled and emptied of yourselves, resolvedly parting with all your sins as to affection, and sincerely renouncing all your own righteousness as to dependence, you cast yourselves upon Christ, lean and depend upon Him, expecting remission and salvation only through His perfect righteousness made yours by imputation.

Have you, by faith, discerned Christ? Have you, by faith, applied Christ? Are you, by faith, joined to Christ? Have you been, by faith, taken off your own foundations, and built upon Christ the chief Cornerstone? Have you, by faith, been cut off from your old stock, and engrafted into Christ the choice Vine? Have you, by faith, been divorced from sin and married unto Christ, the best Husband? Have you gotten unto and into Christ by faith? And have you received Him into your hearts by faith? Without this true faith, there can be union to Christ; without union to Christ, there can be no interest in Christ; without interest in Christ, there can be no remission of sin, no salvation and deliverance from wrath to come.

2. If you have an interest in Christ, you have life.
1 John 5:12: “He that hath the Son hath life, and he that hath not the Son hath not life.” He who has an interest in Christ, the Son of God, has life. He shall have eternal life hereafter, and he has spiritual life, which is eternal life begun here. These, besides the natural life which they received from the parents in their generation, have a principle of spiritual life, which they receive from the Spirit of God in their regeneration. They are the only persons who are quickened from their spiritual death; but he who does not have the Son does not have life. Such shall never see life hereafter, but the wrath of God abides on them John 3:36). Plus, they are spiritually dead here, dead in trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1).

You may know whether you have an interest in Jesus Christ by your spiritual life. I do not say by your constant liveliness, for this may be wanting at some times in true believers, but you may know it by your spiritual life. You were dead, but now you are alive; and you may know your spiritual life by your spiritual motion from sin and towards God; by your spiritual senses to discern between good and evil; by your spiritual appetite after Christ and His righteousness, and communion with God in His ordinances and the like. If these are not symptoms of this spiritual life in you, it is a sign that Christ is not in you; you have no interest in Him and His deliverance.

3. If you. have an interest in Christ, you have love.
You love Christ in sincerity (Ephesians 6:24: “Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus in sincerity”) and you love Christ supremely (Matthew 10:37: “He that loveth father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me”). If any man or woman loves any person or thing in the world more than Jesus Christ, they are unworthy, of Him and have no interest in Him or any of His benefits. And therefore a dreadful curse is pronounced upon such as do not love Christ. 1 Corinthians 16:22: “If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema Maranatha.” That is, let him be cursed until the Lord tomes; and when the Lord comes the wrath of God will also come upon him.

4. If you have an interest in Christ, you have likeness. You are like unto Christ; you have His image upon you. Jesus Christ is formed in you (Galatians 4:19). You are like Christ in your disposition, in humility, meekness, heavenliness, and the like. You are not perfectly like Him, yet in some measure you are. And you imitate Him more and more, and endeavor after more conformity to His image. Where pride reigns instead of humility, where inordinate anger reigns instead of meekness, where malice and revenge reign instead of love and forgiveness, where the love of the world reigns instead of heavenlymindedness, where evil concupiscence reigns instead of mortified affections, such are without likeness to Christ and without interest in Christ. Those who are graceless are also Christless, and cannot escape future wrath.

5. If you have an interest in Christ, you have obedience. Your faith shows itself in your works James 2:18). And your love shows itself in your keeping Christ’s commands Uohn 14:21). Such as do not obey Christ’s laws, but cast His commandments behind their backs, and will not have this Lord to rule over them, have neither faith, nor love, nor life, nor likeness unto Christ; and therefore be sure that they have no interest in Him. Test your interest in Christ, the only Deliverer from future wrath, by these marks.

USE OF REPROOF AND TERROR
If upon search you find you are without an interest in Christ, allow this word of reproof. Sinners, what do you think? Is there no such thing as wrath to come? Is there no such place as hell, where the damned shall be eternally tormented? What blackmouth is there who dares to speak against this truth which is so clearly revealed in the Word of God? Surely none but such as are children of the devil; the father of lies will impeach the Word of God with falsehood, and hereby make God- a liar, who has foretold this so plainly in Scripture. Only such as are loose in their lives and deficient in their morals, whose interest they think it is to do so, will deny the punishment by eternal fire in hell so that they might sin with fewer checks and controls. But when they come to feel the heat of this fire, as of all others they are most likely to be cast into everlasting burnings, then they will be of another mind.

And if there is such dreadful wrath coming, such a horrible fire being prepared in hell for all disobedient persons, for all impenitent persons, for all hypocrites and unbelievers, what do you so, sinners? Have you not sinned? Have you not by your sins deserved hell’s burnings? And are you not by your sins exposed unto the vengeance of eternal fire? Is there any way for you to escape but by Jesus Christ, the only Deliverer from wrath to come? And do you yet neglect Him? Do you refuse and reject Him? Do you shut the door of your hearts against Him? What! Do you think only of what your bodies shall eat, what you shall drink, and wherewith you shall be clothed? Do you think only of providing for a short abode in this world, and in the meantime neglect your salvation of your souls, and take no care to prevent your everlasting punishment? Are you not guilty of a greater affront and indignity against God, when He has made such provision for your salvation as to send His Son into the world for you, and to offer His Son with deliverance to you? Don’t you sin against the greatest expression of His love to mankind? Don’t you spurn Him, and in effect say, “God might have kept His Son to Himself for all I care!” Are you not guilty of the greatest ingratitude towards the Lord Jesus Christ?

Never was there such a thing heard of since the foundation of the world; never could such a thing have entered into your thoughts or desires as the Lord Jesus has freely, and of His own accord, done for you. It is a most stupendous thing which, I think, should fill you with astonishment and admiration: that the Lord of glory should take your flesh, make Himself of no reputation, and humble Himself unto death, even the cursed death of the cross, and all so that He might deliver you from the curse of the law, the wrath to come and the pains of hell forever. Now, :when Christ, by His death, has fully satisfied God’s justice for your sins, and purchased eternal life for your souls, and out of wonderful kindness has caused the. everlasting gospel and glad tidings of salvation to be made known in this little nook of the earth, and cast your lot in such. a spot of ground as the like is not to be found again under the whole scope. of heaven for’ the pure and powerful preaching of the gospel; I say, when Jesus Christ has sent His faithful ministers to you (whom you may find and hear if you will look after them) with this message, to tell you what Christ has done for you, and to make tenders of Him with all His benefits to you; when Christ lets you know how able and willing He is to save you, and knocks at the door of your hearts for entertainment-if though you are such helpless and miserable creatures without Him, you should, notwithstanding all this, refuse or neglect Christ, prefer some base lust before Him, and serve the devil rather than be saved by Christ, hereby you express great contempt of Christ and are guilty of horrid ingratitude. Hereby you trample His blood under your feet, and in effect, you say that He might have spared His pains in coming down from heaven, that He might have stayed until He had been sent for, that He might have carried His gospel to any other place, for all you value it or Him.

Thus you deal with Christ and thrust Him away from you, though He comes upon the most welcome errand, and ought to be received with all readiness and thankfulness. And think, sinner, moreover how injurious you are hereby unto yourselves, what folly and madness you are guilty of Do you know what you are? If you do, you know that without Christ you are cursed wretches and children of wrath.

Behold this wonder in Christ: everlasting burnings have become everlasting mercies. And he who will come at the last day as a judge in flaming fire to take vengeance upon you, if you are found without an interest in Him, now offers to be your Savior and Advocate to deliver you from the wrath to come. And is it not the height of folly and sottishness to slight and refuse such a person, and, by refusing Him, to plunge yourselves into unavoidable ruin and destruction?

When you may have Christ, and with Him all things needful in this world, and that with greater security than by all your inordinate desires and endeavors, and moreover such riches as exceed all earthly treasures, and besides this a crown of glory in the other world; when, notwithstanding this, you choose to neglect Christ and choose rather the pleasures of sin for a season, the gratifying of some base lusts unto the everlasting damnation of your souls and bodies in hell; to refuse, with Christ, everlasting happiness, and headlong to run yourselves into everlasting burnings—if this is not folly and madness, I don’t know what is!

You can’t contrive or cause greater mischief and injury to yourselves; for I am persuaded that such as go to hell out of England, especially out of London, where they have or might have such plentiful means of grace, of all others will have the lowest and hottest place. Oh, how it will sting and gnaw, rack and torture you forever to remember what seasons and opportunities, what calls and invitations you had; but by your neglect of getting an interest in the Lord Jesus. the Deliverer from wrath to come, you have brought ruin upon yourselves, Think, sinners, how unavoidable the wrath to come is without an interest in Christ; and think, oh, think how intolerable this wrath will be when it has come! “Who can dwell with devouring fire?” Think of the extremity of pain and anguish which is prepared for you; think of the eternity of hell’s torments, that when you have been there as many thousands and millions of years as there are stars or sands, your torment will be but beginning. Never, never, never will it have any ending. I think this should terrify all Christless sinners who are already condemned to this place of torment. John 3:18: ‘He that believeth not is condemned already.” And you do not know how soon execution may follow the sentence. If you die this night out of Christ, the wrath of God will seize upon you immediately, and you will be irrecoverably miserable, and that to eternity.

USE OF COMFORT
This comfort is for all those who, upon trial, find well-grounded evidence of their interest in this Jesus, the only Deliverer from wrath to come. You are the only persons in the world who are in a safe condition (Romans 8:33-34). Who shall lay anything to your charge? If God does not charge you with guilt, who can charge you besides? Through Christ, God justifies you. He pardons all your sins as if they had never been committed, and accepts you as perfectly righteous through the perfect righteousness of Christ, which has been made yours by faith. Who is it who can condemn you? The law may condemn you, conscience may condemn you; but since Christ died for you, and in His deathwas condemnedd and suffered in your place, you are freed from the condemnation of God and the eternal damnation of hell.

Now, being out of all danger of future wrath, you may the better bear any evil of affliction which in this world may be your portion. You may now comfortably wait for the coming of Christ from heaven, whom God has raised from the dead, even this Jesus who has delivered you from wrath to come, and who will bring for you, and give to you, everlasting glory and happiness at the day of His second appearance.

USE OF EXHORTATION
Let this exhort such as are without an interest in Christ, the Deliverer from wrath to come. Oh, be persuaded, without any further delay, to flee from this wrath of God, which pursues you and will overtake you ere long; this is done by fleeing unto, and getting an interest in, this Jesus, who alone can deliver you. Oh, that I might be instrumental in bringing some of you to close with Jesus Christ! Sinners, Will you be persuaded at length to accept Christ? You may have Him, and you must have Him; otherwise you are cursed, you are lost, and you cannot escape eternal death and wrath. If you would be delivered from wrath to come by Jesus Christ, take these few directions:

1. Labor for a thorough sense of your absolute need of Christ, and that not only by reason of your guilt of sin and danger of hell, but also that there is no salvation or deliverance attainable by any other way but by Jesus Christ. Do not think that your repentance and reformation, though these are necessary, and without which there can be no salvation for you, can save you without Christ. If you should attain these, and rest in these, you will as certainly go to hell as the most wicked transgressor. You cannot be saved by any of your. own righteousness, because your righteousness is imperfect, and therefore cannot satisfy God’s justice for your sins, and therefore cannot deliver you from wrath to come. Should you weep for your sins till your eyes were cried out, and sigh and grieve. for sin till your hearts were broken; should you wear your knees to the bone with kneeling, wear your tongues to the roots with praying, and consume your flesh to nothing with fasting; should you be as just, temperate, charitable, and as strictly religious as anyone breathing, yea, as holy for the future as any angel in heaven, all this would not wipe away the guilt of your sin or deliver you out of the hands of God’s justice, which must be satisfied.

One has said very well that if any would be saved by their own righteousness, they must first go to hell, and there continue in torments to eternity; and if that could be supposed which cannot be supposed to be done—because there is no ending of those torments which are eternal, and therefore there is no possibility of getting loose from them—yet, supposing that anyone could do this, they must come back and fulfill the law in every tittle. Both of these being impossible for you who are guilty of sin, you have absolute need of Christ’s perfect righteousness in order to be delivered from wrath to come.

It is this which damns and sinks many thousands in hell: looking and seeking to be saved by a righteousness of their own. I know that most are damned for their unrighteousness, and go to hell in the broader way of gross impiety and wickedness; yet if that is the broader way and has its ten thousands, this too is broad and has its thousands. Besides the more sober among the heathens, who believed in a future state of happiness and looked to arrive at it by moral righteousness; besides the papists, who assert justification by their works, and that we are no otherwise justified than as we are made internally righteous, and this expressing itself in acts of obedience; besides Socinians and other sects, together with the Quakers, who plainly affirm that we must be saved by a righteousness within, which the Quakers call “Christ within” (all of whom fundamentally err in their judgments concerning the righteousness which alone can save-besides these, it is natural to all to seek salvation this way.

All are born under a covenant of works; they are under the law and not under grace, and when any think how they shall be saved, they immediately set to work and seek a righteousness of their own. They seek to fulfill the law themselves, and hope that if they repent and lead a new life, though they have sinned, God will be merciful, and will pardon and save them.

It is an ordinary thing that, even where the light of truth most clearly shines and the gospel is most powerfully preached, when any are convinced of sin by the beams of this light, and awakened out of their security by some powerful sermon that reveals their danger of eternal ruin as the just desert of sin, they will cry out with the Philippian jailer, “What shall we do to be saved?” And however they are directed, as he was, to believe, yet most rest in doing, not believing.

They fall immediately upon confession of sin and sorrowing for it; they fall upon reforming. They will not be drunk or swear, commit adultery or break the Sabbath, or defraud in their dealings. They now begin to hear the Word, to pray with their families and in secret, to keep days of fasting, and conform unto all these external acts of devotion. And if they can attain to some kind of flashy affection, they think all is well. If they find their hearts dull, cold, and hard, they may also be troubled for it—not upon a right gospel account, but because they feel they lack such a righteousness to present God with as they desire, or through some secret fear that their righteousness will not hold water. But all this while these persons seek after salvation through a self-righteousness, and Christ is left out. His righteousness is either unknown or utterly disregarded and neglected by them. And thus many go to hell in a way of duty. Their duties are the occasion of their damnation through their resting in them.

It may seem strange that any should have hopes of salvation by imperfect service, but this, I suppose, may come to pass either because they don’t mind the imperfections -of their services (for lack of understanding the law in its spirituality, and examining themselves by it), or through misapprehensions that God’s mercy revealed in His Word will pardon them. They do not consider that all His special mercy in pardoning and saving is through Christ; nor do they consider that God is -infinitely just and righteous as well as merciful, and that there is no room for the exercise of mercy towards sinners until justice is satisfied; they do not consider that God’s justice requires a perfect righteousness, otherwise there cannot be a perfect justification; they do not consider that there must be full satisfaction of God’s justice for the breach of God’s law, otherwise there can be no clear remission, and that there must be perfect righteousness made out some way, or else we cannot be accepted by God as righteous.

Since, therefore, this satisfaction of God’s justice cannot be made by ourselves, because,’ being finite, we cannot make an infinite compensation which infinite justice requires; and since perfect righteousness, which must include both original and actual, cannot be in us who are guilty both of original and actual sin; and since the least sin renders forever a personal perfect righteousness impossible; and since the law curses everyone who does not continue in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them; therefore, as many as are of the law, who seek justification by the way of works or the righteousness of the law, are under the curse (Galatians 3:10). It is clear that whoever expects to be saved from wrath to come cannot do so by their own righteousness, but by another’s righteousness, namely the righteousness of Christ. If you would attain an interest in Christ, you must be sensible of your need of Him and His righteousness upon this account.

2. Labor for a thorough acquaintance with the nature, intention, and efficacy of the righteousness of Christ. The apostle said of the Jews, in Romans 10:2-4, “I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they, being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness unto everyone that believeth.” And as it was with the Jews of old, so it is with many nominal Christians now, who may be led only by a blind zeal to work out their own salvation in a way of doing. This is through their ignorance of the righteousness of Christ, called here in Romans “the righteousness of God,” either because it is the only righteousness which God will accept, or because it is, the righteousness which God has provided for men, which sense it must have. Romans 3:21-22: “But now the righteousness of God ,without the law is manifest, even the righteousness of God, which is by faith in Jesus Christ.” This is the righteousness which God accepts and has appointed for our justification.

Or else it is called the righteousness of God because it is the righteousness of Christ, who is God-man, no other righteousness than of such a person being sufficient for man in his fallen state. Through the ignorance of this righteousness of Christ, many Christians seeking after. righteousness go about to establish their own righteousness (that is, a personal righteousness), endeavor the gaining of heaven in a way of doing, and do not submit themselves to the righteousness of God. It is through pride (so natural to everyone) that they are loath to be beholden wholly unto another. They would have something of their own to commend them to God; and therefore they do not submit unto the righteousness of Christ which God has provided for them.

Therefore you must labor to be clear in your understanding of what this righteousness of Christ is. There are two things required of and absolutely necessary to fallen man. The first is satisfaction unto God’s justice for his sins. Without this there can be no escape from eternal death and misery, because guilt obliges unto punishment, and this cannot be removed until God’s justice is satisfied. The other is perfect, actual obedience to God’s law. Without this there can be no attaining -eternal life and glory. The first covenant of works, given to man in his fallen state, would still be in force: “Do this and live,” and “the soul that sinneth shall die.” Now man, being finite, cannot satisfy God’s justice for his sins. And, being a sinner, he cannot yield perfect, actual obedience to God’s law. But the Lord Jesus Christ has done both for man.

By His suffering and death upon the cross, Christ made satisfaction of God’s justice, being made a curse for us (Galatians 3:13). And undergoing equivalent punishment, punishment unto the damned’s torments, and being God-man, though only the human nature suffered, yet the divine nature in the same person put an infinite value upon the sufferings of the human nature, and so became a sufficient satisfaction of God’s infinite justice. And hereby He has purchased redemption of sins and deliverance from wrath to come.

Christ has yielded a perfect, actual obedience unto the law. He has fulfilled all righteousness so that, not having a perfect righteousness of our own, His might be made ours, and we might attain life thereby. This passive and active obedience is the righteousness of Christ, which you should labor to understand. Also understand that Christ did not have this righteousness for Himself. He had no sin of His own for which to suffer; but it was in our place and as our Surety. This righteousness was intended for us, and, being the righteousness of such a person, is highly efficacious to attain that for which it was designed, as. will appear by the covenant.

3. Labor for a thorough understanding of the covenant, both the covenant which God made with Christ on behalf of man and the covenant which God has made with man through Christ.

Acquaint yourselves with the covenant God made with Christ on behalf of man. Whatever worth and value there was in the righteousness of Christ, yet God might have required a personal righteousness and satisfaction, and Christ’s righteousness might have stood us in no stead. But God eternally covenanted and agreed with Christ that if He would take human nature, and work out a righteousness for fallen man, it would be accepted; that if He would take to Himself the body of a man that God would prepare for Him, and make His soul an offering for sin, that is, suffer what His justice required for the sins of man, He would see His seed and justify many (Isaiah 53:10-11). It is through this covenant with Christ that Christ’s righteousness is accepted on behalf of sinners, God having agreed before that it should so be.

Acquaint yourselves with the covenant which God has made with man through Christ, where upon the account of Christ God has promised remission of sins and eternal life. Hebrews 10:16-17: “This is My covenant that I will make with them, saith the Lord: I will put My laws into their hearts, and their sins and iniquities I will remember no more.”

1 John 2:25: ‘This is the promise which He hath promised, even eternal life.” If ever you are saved from eternal wrath and attain eternal life, it must be by virtue of this new covenant of grace, wherein God engages to give what His Son has purchased.

Labor to be acquainted with the nature and use of faith, which is the tenor of the covenant of grace. The tenor of the covenant of works was “Do this and live.” The tenor of, or that which is required to have an interest in, the covenant of grace is “Believe and live.” Faith joins -the soul unto Christ, the Mediator of this covenant, and gives an actual interest in Him and His purchase, as well as whatever is promised through Him in the covenant. Faith is the soul resting alone on Christ, and applying the promises of pardon and life unto the soul. Faith is not only a discerning, but applying or laying hold of Christ’s righteousness outside us, whereby it is imputed to us or accounted as ours by God, as if it had been our own personal righteousness. If ever you would be justified, that is, have your sins pardoned and your persons accepted as perfectly righteous in the sight of God, it must be by faith. You must renounce your own righteousness as imperfect and insufficient, apprehending and applying, resting and trusting in Christ’s perfect righteousness.

4. Apply yourselves unto God in prayer, that He, having given His Son for you, would also give Him to you, and that He would give you faith to receive and apply Him. Beg this again and again, with confession of your sins and the sense of your want of Christ; never stop asking until you obtain. Also attend upon the Word where it is preached most purely and power fully for the working of faith, which comes by hearing (Romans 10:17). And then, in the strength of the Lord, put forth your hand to lay hold of Christ, and-labor to cast yourselves upon Him, resigning withal yourselves up to Him not only to be saved, but also to be taught and ruled by Him.

OBJECTION. I know someone will object, “If we seek thus to be delivered from wrath to come by Jesus Christ, and by faith in His righteousness outside us, and not by internal righteousness or that of works, this will open a door to licentiousness.”

ANSWER. This is an old objection against the doctrine of justification by faith, even in the days of the Apostles, when the doctrine was first preached. But, as then, so also now, this doctrine does not give any liberty to sin; for however we cannot be saved by inherent righteousness and any of our good works, yet we cannot be saved Without them. None can assert more highly that there must be regeneration and sanctification, a new heart and a new life; otherwise there can be no admission into heaven and no escaping the damnation of hell.

Yea, further, we say that the same faith which is an instrument of justification is also a part of sanctification, being a heart-purifying grace (Acts 15:9). As faith is a hand to lay hold of Christ’s righteousness, so it is a hand to receive supplies of grace and spirit from Christ to quicken us unto newness of life. Yea, I may say, there can be no real, inherent righteousness without an interest by faith in Christ’s imputed righteousness. There may be a righteousness of some kind like it, but not of the right kind, not a righteousness which springs from the true principle of faith, and therefore it cannot be a righteousness that is pleasing to God; for “without faith it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews 11:6).

So if you would have inherent righteousness, and walk so as to please God, you must believe on the Lord Jesus, and fetch grace from Him in whom all the fullness of Deity dwells (Colossians 1:19). If you would have lust mortified, the world crucified, and overcome the devil, who endeavors by his temptations to draw you unto sin, you must draw virtue and strength to do it by faith. In a word, if you would deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, and live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present evil world, you must do it by faith. But how to attain the principle and practice of godliness, I will address in the last part of this book.

Had I room, I might speak much by way of exhortation to such as have attained an interest in. Christ and the deliverance purchased by Him. In a word, learn to admire free grace, to be very thankful and watchful, to endeavor to bring others to Christ, to adorn your profession, to be blameless and harmless, the disciples of Christ without rebuke in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you should shine as lights in the world here, so that you may shine like stars, yea, like suns in the kingdom of your Father forever.

END OF DOCUMENT

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Raising Your Sons to be Warriors for Christ!

Posted by Scott on February 27, 2008

A Challenge:  Raise A Spartan Warrior For Christ!

“Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth”
–Psalm 127:4

You may be thinking right now that I am crazy for using Spartan Warrior within Christianity, but read the entire piece before passing judgment.  Spartan Warriors were fierce fighters.  They would fight to the death for their family, king, and kingdom.  They were ruthless and unconventional in their process and training.  However, my research on Spartan Warriors turned up better qualities for these fighters that many of us as Christian men need to pay attention to. These warriors were trained from the very young age of 7 to be fierce in battle.  The meaning of Spartan is to be “totally devoted to one cause, self-deprived or stripped down to nothing, but the bare essentials, undoubting and courageous”.  They were trained to give their lives without hesitation.  These warriors did not think anything about danger and always expected to win or die trying to win.  These were dreaded men in battle. 

 Gentlemen, I am here to inform you that if you did not know this before now, we are in the battle of our lives and the lives of our families…time to wake-up!  I am afraid that unless we as Christian fathers do not began to train our young men to be like these Spartan Warriors, the future looks very dim.  We need to be training up our boys to be fierce when in battle and this battle takes place daily.  Young men that will not back down from authority that makes rulings in direct conflict with the scriptures.  We need young men that do not mind being ridiculed when they stand up for the under-dog or under-privileged or as they share the gospel to a neighbor or friend.  In some cases this may mean taking up arms to defend our nation and our families from the enemies abroad or even within our midst.  On a daily basis, we need to equip these young fighters with the Truth of God’s Holy Word above all else… God’s Holy Word is not found in the Koran! 

Within the pages of the Bible are many fierce warriors who fought bravely like King David as one example.  The Lord helped him fight with full control of himself and bravely.  David fought mightily with the hand of God on his life…”And David became greater and greater, for the Lord God of hosts was with him.”  2 Samuel 5:10 (NAS)  He as a warrior for the Kingdom of God and Spartan Warriors in ancient Greece were courageous and self-sacrificing.  The crusade I am speaking of today is for the minds and hearts of our young people.  Many Christians have already given up this crusade long ago and have decided to just blend in with the rest of the world in order to have peace.  They may go to church and bible study, but nothing  is different in their lives or the lives of their kids.  We have bought into the society belief that we can be immersed in the life style of the world and still maintain an effective evangelical witness. 

 Titus 2:12(NIV) says, “It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age…”  In John 15:9(NIV)  it states, “If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.”   

Just hoping our kids will turn out alright is not the answer.  Our adversary, Satan, would like nothing else than for parents to take this approach.  Of course by the grace of God some do turn out alright and frankly that is how we all turn out alright. However, these kids are placed in our hands for a short time for training and preparation for the future and we do not want to let them down if at all possible.  The battle for the heart and mind of our children today include homosexuality, pornography, drunkenness, illegal drug usage, over eating, moral relativism, unfaithfulness, theft, lying, and so on.  This corruptness is being taught in nearly every public forum and institution in America as being “right”.  Our children are being taught that there is no sin and there is no right or wrong.  Their cry is that we all need to be more tolerant of each other.  They are taught that Adam can marry Robert and Eve can marry Laura and it is “ok”.  The truth is that homosexuality is sin and it is not “ok”.  This sin is as forgivable as over eating, as is drunkenness and so on. Glory to God that they are forgivable, but I do not want this deviant trash taught to my children and grandchildren as being “ok”.  Pornography is down played as just a natural thing that men and women desire and it is “ok”.  Christian men are not immune to this.  Men it is not “ok” even in the privacy of your own home.  What we put in our minds has a direct impact on what comes out of our life each day.  Much of the violence against women today stems from pornography.  If this kind of trash goes into the mind then I can guarantee you that vile trash will come out in some form of your life.  Drunkenness is very accepted these days as well, although it is nothing new to the ages.  Drunkenness is mind altering and you will do and say things that will not honor God in any way and will bring shame upon your family. 

Psalm 23:33 says about too much wine, “Your eyes will see strange things, and your mind will utter perverse things.” 

God has always spoken out against drunkenness in His Word.  I said here, “drunkenness”, not a glass of wine at dinner…I just wanted to clarify that.  A trendy activity nowadays is to go to church on Sunday and raise your hands and sing in what is perceived to be praising and worshipping God.  Then the rest of the week live as you wish and on the weekend get stumbling drunk with your buddies and come to church on Sunday to be holy again.  Is this truly grace in action?  What a mockery to the glory of Jesus Christ!  Does this show a deep love for our Savior?  Does raising our hands to the “bouncy” music in the churches today that stirs up the emotions really make us spiritual and holy?  I am not attacking praise worship music entirely, but in observing the true impact of this movement that has forgotten the testimony of the hymns of old, I have witnessed people actually growing more vile in their lives rather than a closeness to the Lord as the music stirs up emotions rather than a deep seeded devotion to worshipping Christ in the music and message of the pastor. 

Men, take a hard look into your heart….is that burning desire to know Jesus and love Jesus really there?  What is your reason for going to church or reading your Bible?  Another hot trend within the world today is embracing the Muslim or Hindu or Buddhism religion as another way to heaven…that we should be tolerant.  We are told that there are many ways to God. 

 Matthew 7:13-14 speaks of those broad roads and narrow gates, “Enter by the narrow gate, for the gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it.  For the gate is small, and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it.” 

We are taught to believe they should have equal access to the minds of our children, our culture, and we should move over for their ways and embrace their teachings.  I will make this statement as clear as I can, men, NO ONE has the right to access the mind and heart of my children other than God Himself.  God gave those children to me and my wife to love, nurture, train and protect.  The liberal left does not have the right to them, the Communist left wingers do not have a right to them, the Muslims, Hindu’s, or Buddhist do not have rights to them, the homosexuals do not have rights to them or the legalist within the church today do not have the rights to them, or any other kind of evil that permeates this dark world we live in today.  If I sound a bit combative in this, I am combative.  This is no powder puff football game we are in, people. 

So, I am declaring today that we must start raising our sons ,as the Spartan Warriors of the 21st century, that will carry on these truths that are in God’s Word and do it unashamedly.  We need a crusade where young men will give their lives so that our future generations can survive without having to bow to the vile images that are so prevalent in our culture today or be subject to the horrific views and taunting by the homosexual leftist agenda.  A desire must exist for young men to train themselves to be satisfied with only the bare essentials as Spartan Warriors were disciplined to be and not raised under pampered lives like so many of the Christian and worldly kids of today.  These young men need training to buffet their bodies and keep their actions under control regarding women, children, money, alcohol, politics, and the things of this world.  Our world is groaning for young men who have a deep seeded desire to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ.

   Can we train up young men that will carry as their motto, “Give me Christ and Christ alone”?  We long for young men who are willing to die for the cause of Christ.  This does not come naturally…it comes as we battle forward immersing ourselves in God’s word and let Him develop in our hearts and minds a “biblical world view”.  God is sovereign!  He has never moved or changed His mind.  He is not surprised by the darkness that envelops the world we live in today.  He created this universe and every living or non-living being in it.  He is not bashful about war, battle, death or even love.  So, our challenge today as fathers of sons is to bring up a new generation of young men that will fit the image of God, like a warrior for truth, justice and become a loving family man.  Steve Farrar put it very plainly with this quote from his book, “Standing Tall”:

“Gentlemen, we are raising our kids in this sewer of moral relativism.

If your kids buy into this philosophy, it will ruin their lives.

Here’s the deal, guys.  Our kids won’t know anything unless they see it in our lives.  Our kids won’t know that there are moral absolutes unless they absolutely see those truths lived out in our lives.”

Steve Farrar, “Standing Tall” 1994

 

This is what I am talking about.  The training is about walking and talking God’s truth daily.  It does not mean we are perfect, but that we are able to show our weaknesses as well as our strengths.  We need to show our kids that God creates strength from our weaknesses.  There is a loud voice trying to wake up our countries Christian fathers.  I am afraid though we have ear plugs in or are ignoring this loud call.

“The Christian world is in a deep sleep. 

Nothing but a loud voice can waken them out of it.”

-George Whitefield, 1739

 

Guys, I cannot tell you what to do or how to raise your kids.  I cannot make you do anything you are not entirely willing to do from your heart.  This is not a legalistic set of rules or point of view even though it is my opinion.  I abhor legalism in all of its form when it comes to the scriptures and the life God would have each of us live.  However, I am simply challenging you to rethink how you are training your children, especially the boys and how you are living as an example for them today.  Is it with sacrifice or from a life of pure luxury?  At the age of 7, are you training warriors to do battle for their future wives, children, countrymen, and ancestry or just over educated athletes in hopes of landing that multi-million dollar contract so they can buy more boats, larger houses, more jewelry and filthier women?  What is their view of supporting the ministries that abound in their area today?  Do they have a worldly view or a biblical world view?  Can you see a servant’s heart or a future adult that will be demanding and hard to live with?  Think about what is important in this life that enhances your eternal life and the eternal life of others.  Out of your actions and training which of those give glory to the Lord?  Does baseball, football, basketball, the finest schools, dances, an exotic vacation, or other activities like these have an eternal purpose?  They could have, but just think for a moment how it is coming across to the kids.  Does giving them every single toy they ask for prepare them for the battles ahead in life?  Does saying yes to their every plea really give them a proper outlook on the future?  Does taking their side in every argument truly help them in preparation for debating the liberal left wing of this world?  Do they see you react to a problem with prayer and digging into your Bible or do they observe you speaking harshly of that person or problem and vow your revenge? 

Men, I am not bringing this message from an attitude of having all the answers or that I always do it right, because that would be a bold face lie.  I battle the same sins and problems you do.  I battle the same pride and ego that every man fights.  But the truth is what it is, guys.  I cannot speak totally from example, but simply from God’s truth.  We need fighters, warriors, kids that grow up knowing the Bible and believing that the Bible is completely true as the inspired word of God and fall in love with their Lord Jesus Christ.  Our world can stand young men that will be devoted to their wives, children, and country and see them as a blessing upon their lives rather than a curse. 

 Today, I encourage you to pray sincerely about all that you have read here.  Reach down deep into the pit of your heart to find that which God placed in your heart years ago.  Lift up your family, co-workers, in-laws, and enemies in prayer.  Dress down spiritually and put it all on the table, guys.  Leave it with the Lord…all of it…the hurt, the pain, the tears, the stress, the financial problems, sexual problems, weaknesses, family problems…all of it.  Leave nothing behind to carry on with you.  Then take a long deep breath and set there for a while in silence to listen to hear if God will speak to you.  It may take Him days, weeks, months or years to speak, but He will speak to you.  See if He speaks, not audibly, but spiritually, through His word, through His people, and through the circumstances.  It is better to not move a muscle until you hear God speak then to do anything that would be in direct disobedience to His calling upon your life. 

“Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things.

The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things; and the God of peace shall be with you.”    Philippians 4:8-9 (NAS)

 

Guys think on a few questions this very day:

-Would the Lord have you change anything about your life, the treatment of your wife and children and then the training of your children?

-What change can you make today that would be positively noticeable to your family when you got home from work that would inspire them to want to follow you and serve the Lord more? 

What changes would bring glory to Christ today?

-Do you have a servant’s heart like Christ or is pride and ego in the way?

-Why do you go to church, bible studies, and other “religious” functions?

-What kind of men do you hang around with everyday?

-Most importantly, do you have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ or are you just playing church or religion because it is the cultural thing to do? 

This is serious guys…your life and the lives of our children and grand-children depend on the decisions we make today….tomorrow may be too late.

Scott Bailey 2007 ©  

*Disclaimer:  In no way am I against sports, athletes, vacations, or money.  Joe Lewis, the late great boxer, once said that “no, money isn’t everything, but it sure ranks right up there with air…try to live without for a day.”  Each of us have a God given purpose in life and is according to what God’s desire for our lives are and we should be obedient to Him in that purpose if we want to live a successful life.  That could mean a pro baseball career for example or using your income to provide for families in need that live around you.  So, please reread this with an open heart and mind and look at it from God’s side as to what He might be seeing in us right now.  He wants us to be completely devoted to Him in all things and my heart felt belief is that we have missed this as dads on nearly all accounts…I am as convicted of this in my heart as anyone else. 

May God bless you as you go out each day to provide for your family and as you work hard to make that much needed time to spend with your wife and children.

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Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God! Jonathon Edwards famous sermon

Posted by Scott on February 27, 2008

Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758)

Enfield, Connecticut
July 8, 1741

Their foot shall slide in due time. Deuteronomy 32:35

In this verse is threatened the vengeance of God on the wicked unbelieving Israelites, who were God’s visible people, and who lived under the means of grace; but who, notwithstanding all God’s wonderful works towards them, remained (as vers 28.) void of counsel, having no understanding in them. Under all the cultivations of heaven, they brought forth bitter and poisonous fruit; as in the two verses next preceding the text. — The expression I have chosen for my text, their foot shall slide in due time, seems to imply the following things, relating to the punishment and destruction to which these wicked Israelites were exposed.

  1. That they were always exposed to destruction; as one that stands or walks in slippery places is always exposed to fall. This is implied in the manner of their destruction coming upon them, being represented by their foot sliding. The same is expressed, Psalm 72:18. “Surely thou didst set them in slippery places; thou castedst them down into destruction.

  2. It implies, that they were always exposed to sudden unexpected destruction. As he that walks in slippery places is every moment liable to fall, he cannot foresee one moment whether he shall stand or fall the next; and when he does fall, he falls at once without warning: Which is also expressed in Psalm 73:18,19. “Surely thou didst set them in slippery places; thou castedst them down into destruction: How are they brought into desolation as in a moment!

  3. Another thing implied is, that they are liable to fall of themselves, without being thrown down by the hand of another; as he that stands or walks on slippery ground needs nothing but his own weight to throw him down.

  4. That the reason why they are not fallen already and do not fall now is only that God’s appointed time is not come. For it is said, that when that due time, or appointed time comes, their foot shall slide. Then they shall be left to fall, as they are inclined by their own weight. God will not hold them up in these slippery places any longer, but will let them go; and then, at that very instant, they shall fall into destruction; as he that stands on such slippery declining ground, on the edge of a pit, he cannot stand alone, when he is let go he immediately falls and is lost.

The observation from the words that I would now insist upon is this. — “There is nothing that keeps wicked men at any one moment out of hell, but the mere pleasure of God.” — By the mere pleasure of God, I mean his sovereign pleasure, his arbitrary will, restrained by no obligation, hindered by no manner of difficulty, any more than if nothing else but God’s mere will had in the least degree, or in any respect whatsoever, any hand in the preservation of wicked men one moment. — The truth of this observation may appear by the following considerations.

  1. There is no want of power in God to cast wicked men into hell at any moment. Men’s hands cannot be strong when God rises up. The strongest have no power to resist him, nor can any deliver out of his hands. — He is not only able to cast wicked men into hell, but he can most easily do it. Sometimes an earthly prince meets with a great deal of difficulty to subdue a rebel, who has found means to fortify himself, and has made himself strong by the numbers of his followers. But it is not so with God. There is no fortress that is any defence from the power of God. Though hand join in hand, and vast multitudes of God’s enemies combine and associate themselves, they are easily broken in pieces. They are as great heaps of light chaff before the whirlwind; or large quantities of dry stubble before devouring flames. We find it easy to tread on and crush a worm that we see crawling on the earth; so it is easy for us to cut or singe a slender thread that any thing hangs by: thus easy is it for God, when he pleases, to cast his enemies down to hell. What are we, that we should think to stand before him, at whose rebuke the earth trembles, and before whom the rocks are thrown down?

  2. They deserve to be cast into hell; so that divine justice never stands in the way, it makes no objection against God’s using his power at any moment to destroy them. Yea, on the contrary, justice calls aloud for an infinite punishment of their sins. Divine justice says of the tree that brings forth such grapes of Sodom, “Cut it down, why cumbereth it the ground?Luke 13:7. The sword of divine justice is every moment brandished over their heads, and it is nothing but the hand of arbitrary mercy, and God’s mere will, that holds it back.

  3. They are already under a sentence of condemnation to hell. They do not only justly deserve to be cast down thither, but the sentence of the law of God, that eternal and immutable rule of righteousness that God has fixed between him and mankind, is gone out against them, and stands against them; so that they are bound over already to hell. John 3:18. “He that believeth not is condemned already.” So that every unconverted man properly belongs to hell; that is his place; from thence he is, John 8:23. “Ye are from beneath:” And thither he is bound; it is the place that justice, and God’s word, and the sentence of his unchangeable law assign to him.

  4. They are now the objects of that very same anger and wrath of God, that is expressed in the torments of hell. And the reason why they do not go down to hell at each moment, is not because God, in whose power they are, is not then very angry with them; as he is with many miserable creatures now tormented in hell, who there feel and bear the fierceness of his wrath. Yea, God is a great deal more angry with great numbers that are now on earth: yea, doubtless, with many that are now in this congregation, who it may be are at ease, than he is with many of those who are now in the flames of hell.

    So that it is not because God is unmindful of their wickedness, and does not resent it, that he does not let loose his hand and cut them off. God is not altogether such an one as themselves, though they may imagine him to be so. The wrath of God burns against them, their damnation does not slumber; the pit is prepared, the fire is made ready, the furnace is now hot, ready to receive them; the flames do now rage and glow. The glittering sword is whet, and held over them, and the pit hath opened its mouth under them.

  5. The devil stands ready to fall upon them, and seize them as his own, at what moment God shall permit him. They belong to him; he has their souls in his possession, and under his dominion. The scripture represents them as his goods, Luke 11:12. The devils watch them; they are ever by them at their right hand; they stand waiting for them, like greedy hungry lions that see their prey, and expect to have it, but are for the present kept back. If God should withdraw his hand, by which they are restrained, they would in one moment fly upon their poor souls. The old serpent is gaping for them; hell opens its mouth wide to receive them; and if God should permit it, they would be hastily swallowed up and lost.

  6. There are in the souls of wicked men those hellish principles reigning, that would presently kindle and flame out into hell fire, if it were not for God’s restraints. There is laid in the very nature of carnal men, a foundation for the torments of hell. There are those corrupt principles, in reigning power in them, and in full possession of them, that are seeds of hell fire. These principles are active and powerful, exceeding violent in their nature, and if it were not for the restraining hand of God upon them, they would soon break out, they would flame out after the same manner as the same corruptions, the same enmity does in the hearts of damned souls, and would beget the same torments as they do in them. The souls of the wicked are in scripture compared to the troubled sea, Isa. 57:20. For the present, God restrains their wickedness by his mighty power, as he does the raging waves of the troubled sea, saying, “Hitherto shalt thou come, but no further;” but if God should withdraw that restraining power, it would soon carry all before it. Sin is the ruin and misery of the soul; it is destructive in its nature; and if God should leave it without restraint, there would need nothing else to make the soul perfectly miserable. The corruption of the heart of man is immoderate and boundless in its fury; and while wicked men live here, it is like fire pent up by God’s restraints, whereas if it were let loose, it would set on fire the course of nature; and as the heart is now a sink of sin, so if sin was not restrained, it would immediately turn the soul into fiery oven, or a furnace of fire and brimstone.

  7. It is no security to wicked men for one moment, that there are no visible means of death at hand. It is no security to a natural man, that he is now in health, and that he does not see which way he should now immediately go out of the world by any accident, and that there is no visible danger in any respect in his circumstances. The manifold and continual experience of the world in all ages, shows this is no evidence, that a man is not on the very brink of eternity, and that the next step will not be into another world. The unseen, unthought-of ways and means of persons going suddenly out of the world are innumerable and inconceivable. Unconverted men walk over the pit of hell on a rotten covering, and there are innumerable places in this covering so weak that they will not bear their weight, and these places are not seen. The arrows of death fly unseen at noon-day; the sharpest sight cannot discern them. God has so many different unsearchable ways of taking wicked men out of the world and sending them to hell, that there is nothing to make it appear, that God had need to be at the expense of a miracle, or go out of the ordinary course of his providence, to destroy any wicked man, at any moment. All the means that there are of sinners going out of the world, are so in God’s hands, and so universally and absolutely subject to his power and determination, that it does not depend at all the less on the mere will of God, whether sinners shall at any moment go to hell, than if means were never made use of, or at all concerned in the case.

  8. Natural men’s prudence and care to preserve their own lives, or the care of others to preserve them, do not secure them a moment. To this, divine providence and universal experience do also bear testimony. There is this clear evidence that men’s own wisdom is no security to them from death; that if it were otherwise we should see some difference between the wise and politic men of the world, and others, with regard to their liableness to early and unexpected death: but how is it in fact? Eccles. 2:16. “How dieth the wise man? even as the fool.

  9. All wicked men’s pains and contrivance which they use to escape hell, while they continue to reject Christ, and so remain wicked men, do not secure them from hell one moment. Almost every natural man that hears of hell, flatters himself that he shall escape it; he depends upon himself for his own security; he flatters himself in what he has done, in what he is now doing, or what he intends to do. Every one lays out matters in his own mind how he shall avoid damnation, and flatters himself that he contrives well for himself, and that his schemes will not fail. They hear indeed that there are but few saved, and that the greater part of men that have died heretofore are gone to hell; but each one imagines that he lays out matters better for his own escape than others have done. He does not intend to come to that place of torment; he says within himself, that he intends to take effectual care, and to order matters so for himself as not to fail.

    But the foolish children of men miserably delude themselves in their own schemes, and in confidence in their own strength and wisdom; they trust to nothing but a shadow. The greater part of those who heretofore have lived under the same means of grace, and are now dead, are undoubtedly gone to hell; and it was not because they were not as wise as those who are now alive: it was not because they did not lay out matters as well for themselves to secure their own escape. If we could speak with them, and inquire of them, one by one, whether they expected, when alive, and when they used to hear about hell, ever to be the subjects of misery: we doubtless, should hear one and another reply, “No, I never intended to come here: I had laid out matters otherwise in my mind; I thought I should contrive well for myself — I thought my scheme good. I intended to take effectual care; but it came upon me unexpected; I did not look for it at that time, and in that manner; it came as a thief — Death outwitted me: God’s wrath was too quick for me. Oh, my cursed foolishness! I was flattering myself, and pleasing myself with vain dreams of what I would do hereafter; and when I was saying, Peace and safety, then sudden destruction came upon me.”

  10. God has laid himself under no obligation, by any promise to keep any natural man out of hell one moment. God certainly has made no promises either of eternal life, or of any deliverance or preservation from eternal death, but what are contained in the covenant of grace, the promises that are given in Christ, in whom all the promises are yea and amen. But surely they have no interest in the promises of the covenant of grace who are not the children of the covenant, who do not believe in any of the promises, and have no interest in the Mediator of the covenant.

So that, whatever some have imagined and pretended about promises made to natural men’s earnest seeking and knocking, it is plain and manifest, that whatever pains a natural man takes in religion, whatever prayers he makes, till he believes in Christ, God is under no manner of obligation to keep him a moment from eternal destruction.

So that, thus it is that natural men are held in the hand of God, over the pit of hell; they have deserved the fiery pit, and are already sentenced to it; and God is dreadfully provoked, his anger is as great towards them as to those that are actually suffering the executions of the fierceness of his wrath in hell, and they have done nothing in the least to appease or abate that anger, neither is God in the least bound by any promise to hold them up one moment; the devil is waiting for them, hell is gaping for them, the flames gather and flash about them, and would fain lay hold on them, and swallow them up; the fire pent up in their own hearts is struggling to break out: and they have no interest in any Mediator, there are no means within reach that can be any security to them. In short, they have no refuge, nothing to take hold of; all that preserves them every moment is the mere arbitrary will, and uncovenanted, unobliged forbearance of an incensed God.

Application

The use of this awful subject may be for awakening unconverted persons in this congregation. This that you have heard is the case of every one of you that are out of Christ. — That world of misery, that take of burning brimstone, is extended abroad under you. There is the dreadful pit of the glowing flames of the wrath of God; there is hell’s wide gaping mouth open; and you have nothing to stand upon, nor any thing to take hold of; there is nothing between you and hell but the air; it is only the power and mere pleasure of God that holds you up.

You probably are not sensible of this; you find you are kept out of hell, but do not see the hand of God in it; but look at other things, as the good state of your bodily constitution, your care of your own life, and the means you use for your own preservation. But indeed these things are nothing; if God should withdraw his hand, they would avail no more to keep you from falling, than the thin air to hold up a person that is suspended in it.

Your wickedness makes you as it were heavy as lead, and to tend downwards with great weight and pressure towards hell; and if God should let you go, you would immediately sink and swiftly descend and plunge into the bottomless gulf, and your healthy constitution, and your own care and prudence, and best contrivance, and all your righteousness, would have no more influence to uphold you and keep you out of hell, than a spider’s web would have to stop a falling rock. Were it not for the sovereign pleasure of God, the earth would not bear you one moment; for you are a burden to it; the creation groans with you; the creature is made subject to the bondage of your corruption, not willingly; the sun does not willingly shine upon you to give you light to serve sin and Satan; the earth does not willingly yield her increase to satisfy your lusts; nor is it willingly a stage for your wickedness to be acted upon; the air does not willingly serve you for breath to maintain the flame of life in your vitals, while you spend your life in the service of God’s enemies. God’s creatures are good, and were made for men to serve God with, and do not willingly subserve to any other purpose, and groan when they are abused to purposes so directly contrary to their nature and end. And the world would spew you out, were it not for the sovereign hand of him who hath subjected it in hope. There are the black clouds of God’s wrath now hanging directly over your heads, full of the dreadful storm, and big with thunder; and were it not for the restraining hand of God, it would immediately burst forth upon you. The sovereign pleasure of God, for the present, stays his rough wind; otherwise it would come with fury, and your destruction would come like a whirlwind, and you would be like the chaff on the summer threshing floor.

The wrath of God is like great waters that are dammed for the present; they increase more and more, and rise higher and higher, till an outlet is given; and the longer the stream is stopped, the more rapid and mighty is its course, when once it is let loose. It is true, that judgment against your evil works has not been executed hitherto; the floods of God’s vengeance have been withheld; but your guilt in the mean time is constantly increasing, and you are every day treasuring up more wrath; the waters are constantly rising, and waxing more and more mighty; and there is nothing but the mere pleasure of God, that holds the waters back, that are unwilling to be stopped, and press hard to go forward. If God should only withdraw his hand from the flood-gate, it would immediately fly open, and the fiery floods of the fierceness and wrath of God, would rush forth with inconceivable fury, and would come upon you with omnipotent power; and if your strength were ten thousand times greater than it is, yea, ten thousand times greater than the strength of the stoutest, sturdiest devil in hell, it would be nothing to withstand or endure it.

The bow of God’s wrath is bent, and the arrow made ready on the string, and justice bends the arrow at your heart, and strains the bow, and it is nothing but the mere pleasure of God, and that of an angry God, without any promise or obligation at all, that keeps the arrow one moment from being made drunk with your blood. Thus all you that never passed under a great change of heart, by the mighty power of the Spirit of God upon your souls; all you that were never born again, and made new creatures, and raised from being dead in sin, to a state of new, and before altogether unexperienced light and life, are in the hands of an angry God. However you may have reformed your life in many things, and may have had religious affections, and may keep up a form of religion in your families and closets, and in the house of God, it is nothing but his mere pleasure that keeps you from being this moment swallowed up in everlasting destruction. However unconvinced you may now be of the truth of what you hear, by and by you will be fully convinced of it. Those that are gone from being in the like circumstances with you, see that it was so with them; for destruction came suddenly upon most of them; when they expected nothing of it, and while they were saying, Peace and safety: now they see, that those things on which they depended for peace and safety, were nothing but thin air and empty shadows.

The God that holds you over the pit of hell, much as one holds a spider, or some loathsome insect over the fire, abhors you, and is dreadfully provoked: his wrath towards you burns like fire; he looks upon you as worthy of nothing else, but to be cast into the fire; he is of purer eyes than to bear to have you in his sight; you are ten thousand times more abominable in his eyes, than the most hateful venomous serpent is in ours. You have offended him infinitely more than ever a stubborn rebel did his prince; and yet it is nothing but his hand that holds you from falling into the fire every moment. It is to be ascribed to nothing else, that you did not go to hell the last night; that you was suffered to awake again in this world, after you closed your eyes to sleep. And there is no other reason to be given, why you have not dropped into hell since you arose in the morning, but that God’s hand has held you up. There is no other reason to be given why you have not gone to hell, since you have sat here in the house of God, provoking his pure eyes by your sinful wicked manner of attending his solemn worship. Yea, there is nothing else that is to be given as a reason why you do not this very moment drop down into hell.

O sinner! Consider the fearful danger you are in: it is a great furnace of wrath, a wide and bottomless pit, full of the fire of wrath, that you are held over in the hand of that God, whose wrath is provoked and incensed as much against you, as against many of the damned in hell. You hang by a slender thread, with the flames of divine wrath flashing about it, and ready every moment to singe it, and burn it asunder; and you have no interest in any Mediator, and nothing to lay hold of to save yourself, nothing to keep off the flames of wrath, nothing of your own, nothing that you ever have done, nothing that you can do, to induce God to spare you one moment. — And consider here more particularly,

  1. Whose wrath it is: it is the wrath of the infinite God. If it were only the wrath of man, though it were of the most potent prince, it would be comparatively little to be regarded. The wrath of kings is very much dreaded, especially of absolute monarchs, who have the possessions and lives of their subjects wholly in their power, to be disposed of at their mere will. Prov. 20:2. “The fear of a king is as the roaring of a lion: Whoso provoketh him to anger, sinneth against his own soul.” The subject that very much enrages an arbitrary prince, is liable to suffer the most extreme torments that human art can invent, or human power can inflict. But the greatest earthly potentates in their greatest majesty and strength, and when clothed in their greatest terrors, are but feeble, despicable worms of the dust, in comparison of the great and almighty Creator and King of heaven and earth. It is but little that they can do, when most enraged, and when they have exerted the utmost of their fury. All the kings of the earth, before God, are as grasshoppers; they are nothing, and less than nothing: both their love and their hatred is to be despised. The wrath of the great King of kings, is as much more terrible than theirs, as his majesty is greater. Luke 12:4,5. “And I say unto you, my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that, have no more that they can do. But I will forewarn you whom you shall fear: fear him, which after he hath killed, hath power to cast into hell: yea, I say unto you, Fear him.

  2. It is the fierceness of his wrath that you are exposed to. We often read of the fury of God; as in Isa. 59:18. “According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay fury to his adversaries.” So Isa. 66:15. “For behold, the Lord will come with fire, and with his chariots like a whirlwind, to render his anger with fury, and his rebuke with flames of fire.” And in many other places. So, Rev. 19:15, we read of “the wine press of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.” The words are exceeding terrible. If it had only been said, “the wrath of God,” the words would have implied that which is infinitely dreadful: but it is “the fierceness and wrath of God.” The fury of God! the fierceness of Jehovah! Oh, how dreadful that must be! Who can utter or conceive what such expressions carry in them! But it is also “the fierceness and wrath of almighty God.” As though there would be a very great manifestation of his almighty power in what the fierceness of his wrath should inflict, as though omnipotence should be as it were enraged, and exerted, as men are wont to exert their strength in the fierceness of their wrath. Oh! then, what will be the consequence! What will become of the poor worms that shall suffer it! Whose hands can be strong? And whose heart can endure? To what a dreadful, inexpressible, inconceivable depth of misery must the poor creature be sunk who shall be the subject of this!

    Consider this, you that are here present, that yet remain in an unregenerate state. That God will execute the fierceness of his anger, implies, that he will inflict wrath without any pity. When God beholds the ineffable extremity of your case, and sees your torment to be so vastly disproportioned to your strength, and sees how your poor soul is crushed, and sinks down, as it were, into an infinite gloom; he will have no compassion upon you, he will not forbear the executions of his wrath, or in the least lighten his hand; there shall be no moderation or mercy, nor will God then at all stay his rough wind; he will have no regard to your welfare, nor be at all careful lest you should suffer too much in any other sense, than only that you shall not suffer beyond what strict justice requires. Nothing shall be withheld, because it is so hard for you to bear. Ezek. 8:18. “Therefore will I also deal in fury: mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity; and though they cry in mine ears with a loud voice, yet I will not hear them.” Now God stands ready to pity you; this is a day of mercy; you may cry now with some encouragement of obtaining mercy. But when once the day of mercy is past, your most lamentable and dolorous cries and shrieks will be in vain; you will be wholly lost and thrown away of God, as to any regard to your welfare. God will have no other use to put you to, but to suffer misery; you shall be continued in being to no other end; for you will be a vessel of wrath fitted to destruction; and there will be no other use of this vessel, but to be filled full of wrath. God will be so far from pitying you when you cry to him, that it is said he will only “laugh and mock,Prov. 1:25,26,etc.

    How awful are those words, Isa. 63:3, which are the words of the great God. “I will tread them in mine anger, and will trample them in my fury, and their blood shall be sprinkled upon my garments, and I will stain all my raiment.” It is perhaps impossible to conceive of words that carry in them greater manifestations of these three things, viz. contempt, and hatred, and fierceness of indignation. If you cry to God to pity you, he will be so far from pitying you in your doleful case, or showing you the least regard or favour, that instead of that, he will only tread you under foot. And though he will know that you cannot bear the weight of omnipotence treading upon you, yet he will not regard that, but he will crush you under his feet without mercy; he will crush out your blood, and make it fly, and it shall be sprinkled on his garments, so as to stain all his raiment. He will not only hate you, but he will have you in the utmost contempt: no place shall be thought fit for you, but under his feet to be trodden down as the mire of the streets.

  3. The misery you are exposed to is that which God will inflict to that end, that he might show what that wrath of Jehovah is. God hath had it on his heart to show to angels and men, both how excellent his love is, and also how terrible his wrath is. Sometimes earthly kings have a mind to show how terrible their wrath is, by the extreme punishments they would execute on those that would provoke them. Nebuchadnezzar, that mighty and haughty monarch of the Chaldean empire, was willing to show his wrath when enraged with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego; and accordingly gave orders that the burning fiery furnace should be heated seven times hotter than it was before; doubtless, it was raised to the utmost degree of fierceness that human art could raise it. But the great God is also willing to show his wrath, and magnify his awful majesty and mighty power in the extreme sufferings of his enemies. Rom. 9:22. “What if God, willing to show his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much long-suffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction?” And seeing this is his design, and what he has determined, even to show how terrible the unrestrained wrath, the fury and fierceness of Jehovah is, he will do it to effect. There will be something accomplished and brought to pass that will be dreadful with a witness. When the great and angry God hath risen up and executed his awful vengeance on the poor sinner, and the wretch is actually suffering the infinite weight and power of his indignation, then will God call upon the whole universe to behold that awful majesty and mighty power that is to be seen in it. Isa. 33:12-14. “And the people shall be as the burnings of lime, as thorns cut up shall they be burnt in the fire. Hear ye that are far off, what I have done; and ye that are near, acknowledge my might. The sinners in Zion are afraid; fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites,” etc.

    Thus it will be with you that are in an unconverted state, if you continue in it; the infinite might, and majesty, and terribleness of the omnipotent God shall be magnified upon you, in the ineffable strength of your torments. You shall be tormented in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb; and when you shall be in this state of suffering, the glorious inhabitants of heaven shall go forth and look on the awful spectacle, that they may see what the wrath and fierceness of the Almighty is; and when they have seen it, they will fall down and adore that great power and majesty. Isa. 66:23,24. “And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, saith the Lord. And they shall go forth and look upon the carcasses of the men that have transgressed against me; for their worm shall not die, neither shall their fire be quenched, and they shall be an abhorring unto all flesh.

  4. It is everlasting wrath. It would be dreadful to suffer this fierceness and wrath of Almighty God one moment; but you must suffer it to all eternity. There will be no end to this exquisite horrible misery. When you look forward, you shall see a long for ever, a boundless duration before you, which will swallow up your thoughts, and amaze your soul; and you will absolutely despair of ever having any deliverance, any end, any mitigation, any rest at all. You will know certainly that you must wear out long ages, millions of millions of ages, in wrestling and conflicting with this almighty merciless vengeance; and then when you have so done, when so many ages have actually been spent by you in this manner, you will know that all is but a point to what remains. So that your punishment will indeed be infinite. Oh, who can express what the state of a soul in such circumstances is! All that we can possibly say about it, gives but a very feeble, faint representation of it; it is inexpressible and inconceivable: For “who knows the power of God’s anger?

How dreadful is the state of those that are daily and hourly in the danger of this great wrath and infinite misery! But this is the dismal case of every soul in this congregation that has not been born again, however moral and strict, sober and religious, they may otherwise be. Oh that you would consider it, whether you be young or old! There is reason to think, that there are many in this congregation now hearing this discourse, that will actually be the subjects of this very misery to all eternity. We know not who they are, or in what seats they sit, or what thoughts they now have. It may be they are now at ease, and hear all these things without much disturbance, and are now flattering themselves that they are not the persons, promising themselves that they shall escape. If we knew that there was one person, and but one, in the whole congregation, that was to be the subject of this misery, what an awful thing would it be to think of! If we knew who it was, what an awful sight would it be to see such a person! How might all the rest of the congregation lift up a lamentable and bitter cry over him! But, alas! instead of one, how many is it likely will remember this discourse in hell? And it would be a wonder, if some that are now present should not be in hell in a very short time, even before this year is out. And it would be no wonder if some persons, that now sit here, in some seats of this meeting-house, in health, quiet and secure, should be there before tomorrow morning. Those of you that finally continue in a natural condition, that shall keep out of hell longest will be there in a little time! your damnation does not slumber; it will come swiftly, and, in all probability, very suddenly upon many of you. You have reason to wonder that you are not already in hell. It is doubtless the case of some whom you have seen and known, that never deserved hell more than you, and that heretofore appeared as likely to have been now alive as you. Their case is past all hope; they are crying in extreme misery and perfect despair; but here you are in the land of the living and in the house of God, and have an opportunity to obtain salvation. What would not those poor damned hopeless souls give for one day’s opportunity such as you now enjoy!

And now you have an extraordinary opportunity, a day wherein Christ has thrown the door of mercy wide open, and stands in calling and crying with a loud voice to poor sinners; a day wherein many are flocking to him, and pressing into the kingdom of God. Many are daily coming from the east, west, north and south; many that were very lately in the same miserable condition that you are in, are now in a happy state, with their hearts filled with love to him who has loved them, and washed them from their sins in his own blood, and rejoicing in hope of the glory of God. How awful is it to be left behind at such a day! To see so many others feasting, while you are pining and perishing! To see so many rejoicing and singing for joy of heart, while you have cause to mourn for sorrow of heart, and howl for vexation of spirit! How can you rest one moment in such a condition? Are not your souls as precious as the souls of the people at Suffield, where they are flocking from day to day to Christ?

Are there not many here who have lived long in the world, and are not to this day born again? and so are aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and have done nothing ever since they have lived, but treasure up wrath against the day of wrath? Oh, sirs, your case, in an especial manner, is extremely dangerous. Your guilt and hardness of heart is extremely great. Do you not see how generality persons of your years are passed over and left, in the present remarkable and wonderful dispensation of God’s mercy? You had need to consider yourselves, and awake thoroughly out of sleep. You cannot bear the fierceness and wrath of the infinite God. — And you, young men, and young women, will you neglect this precious season which you now enjoy, when so many others of your age are renouncing all youthful vanities, and flocking to Christ? You especially have now an extraordinary opportunity; but if you neglect it, it will soon be with you as with those persons who spent all the precious days of youth in sin, and are now come to such a dreadful pass in blindness and hardness. — And you, children, who are unconverted, do not you know that you are going down to hell, to bear the dreadful wrath of that God, who is now angry with you every day and every night? Will you be content to be the children of the devil, when so many other children in the land are converted, and are become the holy and happy children of the King of kings?

And let every one that is yet out of Christ, and hanging over the pit of hell, whether they be old men and women, or middle aged, or young people, or little children, now hearken to the loud calls of God’s word and providence. This acceptable year of the Lord, a day of such great favour to some, will doubtless be a day of as remarkable vengeance to others. Men’s hearts harden, and their guilt increases apace at such a day as this, if they neglect their souls; and never was there so great danger of such persons being given up to hardness of heart and blindness of mind. God seems now to be hastily gathering in his elect in all parts of the land; and probably the greater part of adult persons that ever shall be saved, will be brought in now in a little time, and that it will be as it was on the great out-pouring of the Spirit upon the Jews in the apostles’ days; the election will obtain, and the rest will be blinded. If this should be the case with you, you will eternally curse this day, and will curse the day that ever you was born, to see such a season of the pouring out of God’s Spirit, and will wish that you had died and gone to hell before you had seen it. Now undoubtedly it is, as it was in the days of John the Baptist, the axe is in an extraordinary manner laid at the root of the trees, that every tree which brings not forth good fruit, may be hewn down and cast into the fire.

Therefore, let every one that is out of Christ, now awake and fly from the wrath to come. The wrath of Almighty God is now undoubtedly hanging over a great part of this congregation. Let every one fly out of Sodom: “Haste and escape for your lives, look not behind you, escape to the mountain, lest you be consumed.”

Posted in Jonathon Edwards Sermon Series | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Do You Practice God Centered Evangelism?

Posted by Scott on February 27, 2008

What is your main objective? Is it to see people come to Christ and be saved?

Is it to do good works for your fellow man?

Or is your ultimate goal in all things to bring glory our sovereign God?

Watch This Video Here!

 

1 Peter 4:11

“if any man speaketh, ‘speaking’ as it were oracles of God;

is any man ministereth, ‘ministering’ as of the strength which God supplieth:

that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ,

whose is the glory and the dominion for ever and ever. Amen.”

-scott bailey 2008

Posted in Christianity, Emerging Topics, evidence | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Consequences of Neglecting Context!

Posted by Scott on February 27, 2008

“One of the most tragic and common mistakes in the pulpits today, especially the American pulpits

is for a preacher or teacher to be found quoting scripture

out of context and then using that scripture to launch their own agenda whether for

profit or not even to 

talk about their own philosophical ideas.”

Powerful Video!!!

2 Timothy 4:1-5 (NAS)

“Preach the Word”

 1(A)I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to (B)judge the living and the dead, and by His (C)appearing and His kingdom:

 2preach (D)the word; be ready in season and out of season; (E)reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great (F)patience and instruction.

 3For (G)the time will come when they will not endure (H)sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires,

 4and (I)will turn away their ears from the truth and (J)will turn aside to myths.

 5But you, (K)be sober in all things, (L)endure hardship, do the work of an (M)evangelist, fulfill your (N)ministry.

-Scott Bailey 2008

 

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Does God Have a Wonderful Plan For Your Life?

Posted by Scott on February 27, 2008

This question depends on where you are in your life. If you die as unbeliever, you’ll think He has a terrible plan for you. But what about Christians…the Believers in Christ, can we honestly tell other believers that He has a wonderful plan for their life? Can we leave any part of the bible out and really substantiate that God has a definite plan already being worked out?

Watch the Video Clip Here!

John 15:18 If the world hateth you, ye know that it hath hated me before ‘it hated’ you.”

-Scott Bailey 2008

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