Why we Worship

PSALM 47

Clap your hands, all peoples!
  Shout to God with loud songs of joy!
For the LORD, the Most High, is to be feared,
  a great king over all the earth.
He subdued peoples under us,
  and nations under our feet.
He chose our heritage for us,
  the pride of Jacob whom he loves.

God has gone up with a shout,
  the LORD with the sound of a trumpet.
Sing praises to God, sing praises!
  Sing praises to our King, sing praises!
For God is the King of all the earth;
  sing praises with a psalm!

Why Sing?

God reigns over the nations;
  God sits on his holy throne.
The princes of the peoples gather
  as the people of the God of Abraham.
For the shields of the earth belong to God;
  he is highly exalted!


Why Scripture?



 
Revival
And when they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness. (Acts 4:31)


Recent Posts

God? Who Needs Him?
May 31, 2013
Self-sufficient humanism. Paul saw it coming – “lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.”

Imago Dei
September 12, 2012
So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

Why Can't I Pray?
August 18, 2012
The bible gives us several reasons, but according to Jeremy Taylor, a deceitful heart is at the root of prayerlessness.

It's Not Rocket Science
July 23, 2012
To keep in step with the Spirit should be our daily quest. And if we are successful at that, all of life falls into place.

Theological Steak
April 10, 2012
These words by P. T. Forsythe on the magnificence of Christ's work are to theology what Ruth's Chris is to a good steak.

Describing the Indescribable
February 11, 2012
What we have in Christ will take all eternity to describe. But for one segment of one sermon, a great preacher made a mighty attempt.

Making Sense Of It All
January 30, 2012
Where are things headed? Is there rhyme and reason to the endless cycle of summer, fall, winter and spring? Is there a plan in place, or is randomness the explanation?

George Herbert on Prayer Meetings

January 21, 2012

Prayer Meetings are a thing of the past. Or so it seems. What has been lost? Maybe more than we realize.


They all joined together constantly in prayer...Acts 1:14

George Herbert is Christianity's greatest poet (you can argue with me on that if you like!). Writing and pastoring in a small country parish in the early part of the 17th century, his CHURCH PORCH is a concise portrayal of what it means to be a Christian, and the way a believer ought to live out his life in sober and deliberate faithfulness as one bought with the blood of Christ.

The following lines from THE CHURCH PORCH (397-402) distinguish between private and public prayer, and lift up the latter as more profound for the believer's welfare. Given that public prayer meeings are are all but a thing of the past in today's church, we could use a revival of this perspective.

Though private prayer be a brave design,
Yet public hath more promises, more love:
And love’s a weight to hearts, to eyes a sign.
We all are but cold suitors; let us move
Where it is warmest. Leave thy six and seven;
Pray with the most: for where most pray, is heaven.

Don't know about you, but I could use a little more of heaven while here on earth. And if a prayer meeting is where heaven can be found, count me in!






The Kiss Of Death

June 2, 2009

God's grace can lead to not taking sin very seriously. Big mistake! Sin is toxic, to kiss it is to die. Its aim is to take us out, to render us harmless, ineffective, useless, or worse yet, turning us into bored, distracted and conflicted spectators.


John Owen was burdened by apostasy, defined as the formal religious disaffiliation or abandonment or renunciation of one's religion.

The church in all ages has been both red hot and ice cold. Revelation 2 and 3 was written to restore what had been lost, and inspire zeal and fervor for the things of God.

The following is extracted from Owen's THE MORTIFICATION OF SIN, and has been edited slightly to become (hopefully) more clear to our 21st Century ears.

The one main reason why the Spirit and the new nature have been given to us is this - that we may have a principle within whereby to oppose sin and lust.

The flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit also lusts against the flesh," Gal. 5:17.

There is a propensity in the Spirit, or spiritual new nature, to be acting against the flesh, as well as in the flesh to be acting against the Spirit. And when we participate with the divine nature, we are given us an escape from the pollutions that are in the world through lust.....

Now this is, first, the most unjust and unreasonable thing in the world (we might say "idiotic!") when two combatants are engaged, to bind one (the work of the Spirit) and keep him up from doing his utmost, and to leave the other (the flesh) at liberty to wound him at his pleasure; and, secondly, the most foolish thing in the world to bind him who fights for our eternal condition, and to let him alone who seeks and violently attempts our everlasting ruin.

The contest is for our lives and souls. Not to be daily employing the Spirit and new nature for the mortifying of sin, is to neglect that excellent succour which God has given us against our greatest enemy.

If we neglect to make use of what we have received, God may justly hold his hand from giving us more. His graces, as well as his gifts, are bestowed on us to use, exercise, and trade with. Not to be daily mortifying sin, is to sin against the goodness, kindness, wisdom, grace, and love of God, who hath furnished us with a principle of doing it.

Negligence in this duty casts the soul into a perfect contrary condition to that which the apostle affirms....

"Though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day." 2 Corinthians 4:16

When we let the flesh get the upward hand, 2 Corinthians 4:16 is turned upside down - the inward man perishes, and the outward man is renewed day by day. Sin becomes like the house of David, and grace takes on the unfortunate role of the house of Saul. And we know how that turned out! Not good at all for Saul. If this happens, grace loses, as Saul found out in the end.

Exercise and success are the two main cherishers of grace in the heart. When grace is suffered to lie still, it withers and decays: the things of it are ready to die.

Sin gets ground towards the hardening of the heart. This is that which I intend: by the omission of this duty grace withers and lust flourishes, and the frame of the heart grows worse and worse; and the Lord knows what desperate and fearful issues it hath had with many.

Where sin, through the neglect of mortification, gets a considerable victory, it breaks the bones of the soul and makes a man weak, sick, and ready to die, so that he cannot look up.

And when poor creatures will take blow by blow, wound after wound, foil after foil, and never rouse up themselves to a vigorous opposition, can they expect any thing but to be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin, and that their souls should bleed to death?

Watch out that you do not lose what you have worked for, but that you may be rewarded fully. 2 John 8.

Indeed, it is a sad thing to consider the fearful consequences of this neglect, which lie under our eyes every day. How tragic to see those who we once knew to be humble, melting, broken-hearted Christians, tender and fearful to offend, zealous for God and all his ways, his Sabbaths and ordinances now become - through neglect of watching unto this duty - earthly, carnal, cold, wrathful, complying with the men of the world and things of the world, to the scandal of religion and the fearful temptation of them that know them?

COME SPIRIT COME
Come Holy Spirit, dwell here among us
We need your power, your healing grace
Show us your favor, grant us your presence
As you have promised, come Spirit come

Come rushing wind, come holy fire
Here and now descend
O breath of God, O Perfect peace
Revive us once again








Don't Worry! Be Happy!
May 15, 2009
In denial. Nero, who apparently fiddled while Rome burned, would be the classic example of it. Jesus faced it while here on earth. And the disease is still with us. What are its symptoms? Diagnosis is the first step to finding a cure.

Just Wait, The Rain Will Come
April 4, 2009
Faith needs watering and refreshing. The dry spells of life take their toll, no question. But the Holy Spirit is on the lookout, with special tentacles that spot spiritual lethargy, and lukewarmness.And then, it's time for action.

Me, Myself and I
March 12, 2009
You've heard the joke, "enough about me - what do you think of me?" Narcissism is the new religion that suffocates even as it seems to comfort. And it stands completely opposed to the Christian worldview that denies the self. Something has to give.

Tickling And Hell
February 14, 2009
Itching ears abound in our day - those who want to be stroked and coddled even as their soul remains in a state unprepared to meet its maker. What is a preacher to do?

Who Is A God Like You?
February 3, 2009
In Revelation 5, a multitude worships from every race and people and nation. Somewhere in that massive crowd are redeemed ones from the island of Aniwa, in the South Pacific, singing "Worthy is the lamb who was slain." So just how did they get there?

No More "Same Ol' Same Ol"
January 26, 2009
Prayer is at its core it is throwing down the gauntlet at what is, and asking God to intervene. The prophet Habakkuk refused to settle for just ok. He asked God to be mighty, to show His power. Isn't it time we prayed like this once again?

Advent - A Time For Taking Stock
December 2, 2008
Inventory isn't fun, but it is a necessary part of good business practice. And for the believer, this time of year gives us several weeks in a row when we can evaluate and re-evaluate our lives, and what we are giving ourselves away to.

Keeping The Main Thing The Main Thing
November 9, 2008
When the advice "don't put all your eggs in one basket" seeps into ministry, danger lies ahead. "Keeping your options open" is a recipe for disaster for the minister of God, making whole-hearted devotion to Christ an even greater mountain to climb.

A Prophet For Our Times
November 9, 2008
Certain men and women hear from God at key times, and see with eyes that are unimpeded by the smog of culture. David Wells is one such person worth listening to.

"I'm Warning You!"
November 4, 2008
The "slow to anger" part of God's name is to our great benefit. God is patient, and restrains his wrath, giving us time to repent. But we must not test the limits of God's patience. "Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts...Hebrews 3:15

A Voice Crying In The Wilderness
November 2, 2008
God has a standard that he requires of his creatures. And when we fall short of the mark, he anoints prophets to be his mouthpiece. So just where are today's prophets? And will we pay attention in time?

Detecting Slippage
October 21, 2008
This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word. Isaiah 66:2

The Company We Keep
October 10, 2008
You've heard the phrase "in the world, but not of the world." How do we associate with unbelievers, without being molded by their perspective on life, and losing our zeal and spiritual fervor?

Examine Yourself
October 4, 2008
Man is so prone to sinful ways, that without maintaining a constant strict watch over himself, no other can be expected than, that he will walk in some way of sin. Jonathan Edwards

Why Pray?
September 26, 2008
"Prayer," says Vinet, "is like the air of certain ocean isles, which is so pure that there vermin cannot live. We should surround ourselves with this atmosphere, as the diver shuts himself into his bell ere he descends into the deep."

Prayer Changes Things
September 26, 2008
Elijah was a man just like us. He prayed earnestly...James 5:17 What happens when we pray. Amazing things. Consider James McGready.

The Good Ol' Days
July 11, 2008
The Church is in a period of transition with decay being a univeral truth that not even the Church can escape. For the Christian, how can past glory fuel healthy longing for the present and the future?

Rend The Heavens And Come Down
July 8, 2008
God can withdraw His presence, and if He does, things just become normal and blah. Who wants that? What happens if we call on God to come near?

Getting Serious About Revival
July 8, 2008
I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, O Lord. Renew them in our day, in our time make them known. Habakkuk 3:2

Don't Despise The Day Of Small Things
July 8, 2008
God doesn't get caught up in numbers. Remember Gideon? An "army" of 300? This is the story of a prayer meeting that changed a nation.





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