Faith is the medium of exchange in heaven.
If you need an answer to prayer,
spend a little faith.
Faith is the medium of exchange in heaven.
If you need an answer to prayer,
spend a little faith.
(THE IMPORTANT MIXTURE OF FAITH)
us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his
rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the
gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not
profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.”
How great is the good news! It is fraught with promises of wonderful things which God has for those who believe Him and follow Him. The context of Hebrews Chapter Four necessitates the inclusion of the last few verses of Chapter Three. Here, ancient Israel is held up as an example of warning to modern day church saints. It speaks of the generation of Hebrews that came out of Egyptian bondage, but who refused to exercise faith in the promises of God, by which they were denied His rest and the blessings of the Promised Land.
Notice the symbolism (1 Cor.10:1-11): Delivered by the blood; baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; traversing desert wasteland under the protection and provisions of God to the Promised Land; crossing Jordan River to enter the new land, the new life. Those symbols are recognized today as our deliverance by the blood, baptism in water to walk in newness of life; traversing the desert of this worldly life; crossing our Jordan of death to enter His rest and all of its attendant blessings.
So the writer of Hebrews says that both they and us are recipients of the gospel (good news). “But the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.”
Then, the warning: “Let us therefore fear…” You see, it is one thing to be spiritually saved, and quite another to exercise faith in following God. The Hebrews were saved, baptized people, but died because of a lack of faith. The important phrase is “…not being mixed with faith…”
Today, there are a lot of people who are saved, but who are not hearing the Word with that all important mixture of faith. They are often regular church attenders, but church means little more than a civic club or a social event. Soon, such religious practices become dull, boring, and the probability of falling by the wayside looms imminent.
In the ancient language, “being mixed with” is a composite of two words, “together,” plus “to mingle or mix”. Let there be no misunderstanding of the lesson. Those who receive the promises are not those who hear them or can quote them only, but those who believe them with all their heart. With all of your Bible knowledge, do you have this underscored mixture of faith in the Word?
If GOD wanted to prove Himself, He could roll back the heavens and make Himself known with a display of His grandeur, might, and glory. however, such displays would render FAITH unnecessary. – Adrian Rogers
William Andrew Dillard
LANDMARKS OF BAPTIST FAITH
Baptist Churches lay claim to continued existence since the days of the apostles. They are the only community of churches with such origin. They have not been called by the same name, but were known variously as Paterines; Novations; Paulicians; Albigenses; Waldensians; Petro-brusians; Donatists; Anabaptists, etc.
These names, and others, were put upon them usually by the population of their location throughout the centuries. However there is a common thread running through them all by which they are identified as one and the same people. That thread is a core of common beliefs. Recognizing that fact, scholars of various Protestant faiths including Methodists, Episcopalian, Lutheran, and Catholic, too, have verified their continued existence since the apostles, and the only community of churches which have never symbolized with Rome.
These churches were often nomadic of necessity because of persecution from the religious wife of Rome which was most zealous to unite all religion in the empire or else put it out of business via taxation, confiscation of property, burning of houses of worship, imprisonment and execution of the people espousing Biblical views and practices.
There were things about them in different countries and in different times that were uncommon, but the common thread was there exemplified as in a statement of Faith dated 1120 A.D. in THE HISTORY OF THE CHURCHES OF THE VALLEYS OF PIEDMONT written in 1654 by Samuel Moreland.
The Landmarks which have always identified the people presently known as Baptists who are the legitimate successors of those earlier named, but all of whom were generally known as Anabaptists are 1) The depravity of the total man, that is, all of mankind are sinners by nature, and practice. 2) Spiritual salvation is effected by grace through faith plus nothing else. 3) There is eternal security of the believer in Christ, since all who believe in Jesus as personal Savior are granted everlasting life. 4) Baptism is effected by total immersion in water of a professed believer by the authority of a bona fide New Testament Church.
Of course, there are quite a number of other doctrines which make up historic and modern confessions of faith. All of them are important, but those four core doctrines are consistently identified as present and foundational among the Lord’s churches wherever, and whenever they are found. They truly are landmarks of the first church and its successors.
Solomon said it well in Proverbs 22:18, “Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set.” Today, a shallow people is giving way to marginalization by the world’s humanistic religions. Let the wisdom of Solomon be heard for when the landmarks are gone the ship of church is perished.
MARCH 9 – In The Name of The Lord
1Sa 17:45 Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied.
There are several things that very important about this encounter. Here is David, a young man that is displaying maturity and faith.
It is common for enemies to say things to each other about what they will do to their opponent. Goliath said he would give David’s flesh to the fowls of the air, and to the beasts of the world. This same braggadocio takes place today between heads of countries. It is a form of intimidation. It is meant to cast fear into the heart of the opponent.
Too often we try to win the lost and dying world through worldly means and activity. Others try to win the lost with human wisdom and logic. Years and years ago when I pastored in Arkansas, I went to a church that celebrated a pastor being the ministry for 50 years. I listened to all the accolades and then one man went to the podium and related a story about this pastor. This man came to the pastor and asked him to go right now to one of his relatives and get him saved. The pastor willingly went and entered the house and after greetings and purpose were exchanged, He read to the man all the scriptures on salvation. After the man simply nodded to the scriptures, the preacher got up and told his church member it was time to go. They got in the truck and started home and the church member exclaimed, he didn’t get saved. The preacher replied, I did my part, I gave him the plan of salvation, now it is up to the Holy Spirit.
What are you using to reach a rebellious and sinful world for Christ? Years and years ago, a mission organized into a church and was meeting in an old store building downtown. One evening church had dismissed and the members were standing on the sidewalk visiting. A drunk walking through the people noticed the pastor. He stopped and look closely at the pastor’s face and exclaimed, “I-I-I know you, you are the one that saved me.” The pastor’s reply, “yes and you act like someone I saved.” Let us not be saving people but give them the gospel and allow the Holy Spirit to do His work.
I come to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied.
NOW, I CAN BURN!
William Andrew Dillard
Parson to Person
The dark ages are appropriately named. It was a time when knowledge was stifled, persecution rampant, and martyrs made in wholesale numbers as one may readily and correctly infer from such documents as Foxe’s Book of Martyrs; A History of the Churches of the Valleys of Piedmont, and other such historical books.
Almost within shouting distance of the famous Oxford University, the powers of England burned William Tyndale at the stake as he prayed “Lord open the eyes of the King of England.” His crime: translating the Holy Scriptures into the English Language so common people might know God’s truth in a time of terrible clerical corruption.
Among many English martyrs is one notable Thomas Cranmer. He was a religious cleric who lived in the stormy political time of King Henry VIII. It was a time when religious reformation was gaining acceptance, but with a terrible price. Cranmer did the bidding of kings, and was reluctantly promoted into the office of Archbishop of Canterbury. Pressure on his life was so intense that he finally wrote things he did not believe, but to his credit, he recanted his recantations in public forums as well as in written form.
Cranmer was tried, condemned as a heretic and subsequently burned at the stake at Oxford in 1556. He was so remorseful of his earlier actions, and so willing to die rather than re-affirm them, that when put to the stake and the fire began, he said with his hand first extended to the flame, that with this hand I have written offensive things to my very heart, and it should burn first. With his hand steadily in the fire, he was heard to say, “Now I can burn!” In a short time, the man who had served royalty stood by his heart’s convictions and calmly died, consumed by flames without crying out.
So many have paid the ultimate price for matters of faith ( Heb. 11). We need not endorse their every tenant of faith, but, let us not fail them with infidelity to our biblical convictions, even many of those same convictions for which so many died.
William Andrew Dillard
THE ESSENCE OF FAITH
Embraced by millions over the vicissitudes of time, but understood by none, the life-altering, heaven connection “faith,” abounds greater than the sum of all the ugliness, hideousness, and condemning factors of sin in a largely God-rejecting world. Just think about it!
Consider that Hebrews 11:1 calls the spiritual avenue “. . . the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” The blessedness, power, and essence of faith follows throughout that tremendous chapter underscoring the responsible agent of triumph over the overwhelming agents of sin and death. It is arguably the greatest chapter of Christian sustainment in the Bible.
Faith, hope, love are a triad of very real intangibles which defy the test tubes and microscopes of science, as well as the understanding of those who are the recipients of them. They are the provisions of grace: the Creator to the created that rectifies, even excels the Edenic cosmos that our federal parents cast down in that place so long ago.
It all has to do with the decision making processes. Adam and Eve decided to transgress the commands of the Creator thus adding sin inexorably to the makeup of the species.
Paul argues in I Corinthians chapter fifteen, that as the decision of Adam brought condemnation, the decision and perfect work of Jesus brings light and life; albeit not to the sum of the species, but by every individual who is exercised thereby. The greatest wonder of it all is its possibility. It took the death and subsequent resurrection of Jesus to do it. But death is the direct result of sin, and Jesus had no sin—no not one. How then could the sinless become sin for us and pay the penalty for sin that we could not? Again, it is the decision making process, and specifically of One Who is qualified to make the decision with the wherewithal to pay the uttermost.
Thus are we blessed with the substantiatment of eternal things. That substantiation creates the intangible reality of hope in the human heart. Hope is the earnest, intense expectation of knowing and experiencing the physical realities so intangibly planted. It is by faith that we understand creation, Heb. 11:3. So, the essence of faith: without it, it is impossible to please God for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of all those who diligently seek Him. Heb. 11:6. Truly, a faithless life is a life that would be better served had it never existed.
One of the five greatest Senators in U.S. history, the State of New Hampshire placed his statue in the U.S. Capitol’s Statuary Hall.
His career spanned almost four decades, serving as Secretary of State for Presidents William Harrison, John Tyler and Millard Fillmore.
His name was Daniel Webster, born JANUARY 18, 1782.
From a New Hampshire farm, he attended Dartmouth College and became the highest paid attorney of his day.
He fought the slave trade and negotiated the Webster-Ashburton Treaty, which set the nation’s Northeast boundary.
When South Carolina threatened nullification, Daniel Webster stated:
“Liberty and Union, now and forever, one and inseparable!”
When asked what the most profound thought was that ever passed through his mind, Daniel Webster responded:
“My accountability to God.”
At the age of 20, Daniel Webster served as the headmaster of Fryeburg Academy in Fryeburg, Maine, where he delivered a Fourth of July Oration in 1802:
“If an angel should be winged from Heaven, on an errand of mercy to our country, the first accents that would glow on his lips would be,
‘Beware! Be cautious! You have everything to lose; nothing to gain…’”
Daniel Webster continued:
“We live under the only government that ever existed which was framed by the unrestrained and deliberate consultations of the people.
Miracles do not cluster. That which has happened but once in six thousand years cannot be expected to happen often.
Such a government, once gone, might leave a void, to be filled, for ages, with revolution and tumult, riot and despotism.”
At the age of 70, just eight months before his death, Daniel Webster addressed the New York Historical Society, February 23, 1852:
“If we, and our posterity, shall be true to the Christian religion, if we and they shall live always in the fear of God, and shall respect his commandments, if we, and they, shall maintain just, moral sentiments, and such conscientious convictions of duty as shall control the heart and life, we may have the highest hopes of the future fortunes of our country…
It will have no Decline and Fall. It will go on prospering and to prosper.
But, if we and our posterity reject religious instruction and authority, violate the rules of eternal justice, trifle with the injunctions of morality, and recklessly destroy the political constitution, which holds us together, no man can tell, how sudden a catastrophe may overwhelm us, that shall bury all our glory in profound obscurity.
Should that catastrophe happen, let it have no history! Let the horrible narrative never be written!…”
Daniel Webster continued:
“We may trust, that Heaven will not forsake us, nor permit us to forsake ourselves.
We must strengthen ourselves, and gird up our loins with new resolution; we must counsel each other; and, determined to sustain each other in the support of the Constitution, prepare to meet manfully… whatever of difficulty, or of danger…or of sacrifice, the Providence of God may call upon us to meet.
Are we of this generation so derelict, have we so little of the blood of our revolutionary fathers coursing through our veins, that we cannot preserve, what they achieved?
The world will cry out ‘shame’ upon us, if we show ourselves unworthy, to be the descendants of those great and illustrious men, who fought for their liberty, and secured it to their posterity, by the Constitution of the United States…
We have a great and wise Constitution. We have grown, flourished, and prospered under it, with a degree of rapidity, unequaled in the history of the world.
Founded on the basis of equal civil rights, its provisions secure perfect equality and freedom; those who live under it are equal, and enjoy the same privileges…”
Daniel Webster added:
“The Constitution has enemies, secret and professed… They have hot heads and cold hearts. They are rash, reckless, and fierce for change, and with no affection for the existing institutions of their country…
Other enemies there are, more cool, and with more calculation. These have a deeper and more fixed and dangerous purpose…
There are those in the country, who profess, in their own words, even to hate the Constitution…
Friends of the Constitution must rally and unite…act, with immovable firmness, like a band of brothers, with moderation and conciliation… looking only to the great object set before them, the preservation of the Constitution, bequeathed to them by their ancestors.
They must gird up their loins for the work. It is a duty which they owe to these ancestors, and to the generations which are to succeed them…”
Daniel Webster concluded:
“Gentlemen, I give my confidence, my countenance, my heart and hand, my entire co-operation to all good men…who are willing to stand by the Constitution…
I hardly know…the manner of our political death… We shall die no lingering death…
An earthquake would shake the foundations of the globe, pull down the pillars of heaven, and bury us at once in endless darkness.
Such may be the fate of this country and its institutions. May I never live, to see that day!
May I not survive to hear any apocalyptic angel, crying through the heavens, with such a voice as announced the fall of Babylon,
‘Ἔπεσεν, ἔπεσεν, Αμερικη ἡ μεγάλη, καὶ ἐγένετο κατοικητήριον δαιμονίων, καὶ φυλακὴ παντὸς πνεύματος ἀκαθάρτου.’ (Greek: ‘Is fallen, is fallen, America the Great has become a habitation of demons and a hold for every unclean spirit.’)
The Moral Liberal Contributing Editor, William J. Federer, is the bestselling author of “Backfired: A Nation Born for Religious Tolerance no Longer Tolerates Religion,” and numerous other books. A frequent radio and television guest, his daily American Minute is broadcast nationally via radio, television, and Internet. Check out all of Bill’s bookshere.
“Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.” Acts 5:29
Biblically speaking, there are two times, and only two times when it is necessary for the children of God to disregard, disobey, and defy the laws of the land and simply refuse to obey their government: 1.) When the government by law forbids someone from obeying God – Daniel’s praying against the law that forbade it; 2.) When the government by forces someone to disobey God – Hananiah, Azariah, and Meshael, (Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego) being forced to bow to a false god. Only when circumstance fit within the framework of those scriptural principles can a child of God rightly and flatly refuse to obey the laws of the government ruling over them.
I have never seen a time in our nation when either one of those scenarios were the case. To my limited knowledge there has never been a time, when I, anyone I know, or anyone I have heard of, was forced into disobeying the God of the Bible. Conversely, to my limited knowledge there has never been a time when I, anyone I know, or anyone I have heard of was forbidden from obeying God. Within the scope of my vision frontwards, backwards and all around I have never seen either of those cases play out in our society . . . until now.
Though not here yet, we are standing on the cliff of Government Run Faith. Of course we have seen government run health-care on the front porch of the evening news for a while now. Government regulations grip every industry from education and finance to bean sprouts, pot holes, and outhouses. If what is happening over the law being passed in Indiana is any indication of the direction and mood of those wanting the government to regulate body fat, and hairstyles, the next big thing is government approved belief.
The central issue in those shouting the accusations of discrimination is the fact that they cannot and will not stand for someone believing a particular behavior is wrong. As one commentator said, “No one would dare expect a black baker to prepare cupcakes for a KKK rally.” Why then on earth would someone expect a Bible believing Christian to endorse a gay marriage?
Regardless of how loud it gets said, how long they say it, or how many people chime in, in agreement, the scenario they present of a Christian florist refusing flowers for a gay couple is not now, nor has it ever been, nor will it ever be discrimination. It is discernment, conviction, and belief based on the Word of God not to aid and abet a sin that has always been, and always will be a sin. It is not bigotry, it is not hatred, it is not intolerance. We do not provide alcohol to alcoholics, we do not carry people with gambling problems to casinos, we do not drive get away cars for bank-robbers.
Acting upon homosexual attraction is not acceptable to the God of creation. It is not okay, it is not to be embraced, applauded, aided or abetted. From what God has said to man, it is morally illegal, it is spiritually illegal, it is eternally illegal, it is outright bona fide, sin. Period. That is the end of the subject for Christians, and it will never, ever, ever, change. As I have said before, if God said something different, then every Bible believing Christian in the world would say something different. We do not take our cues from “how we are born” we take our cues from “What God has said.”
If those who’s tolerance is a one-way street would speak in plain honest language, what they would says is, “You are not allowed to believe what you believe, and you are not allowed to behave according to that belief. You cannot believe the Bible, you cannot obey the Bible, and you cannot proclaim what you say the Bible says.” Of course that’s my words in their mouths, but that is what I’m hearing from those who have more heat than light.
According to the direction of the mood of this country, the heart of their heat, and their hate is aimed at regulating what Americans are allowed to believe. It is not socially acceptable to “believe gay marriage is wrong.” If that course of thinking continues to be fertilized and fed, it will not be long before it is not legally acceptable to continue to “behave” with the conviction that gay marriage is wrong. Changes are definitely coming, and they are the kind that are not worth making