Infused with PC, Not JC!

To measure anything correctly, we must have the appropriate instrument and the appropriate standard. As a simple example, a portly gentleman can put his mind at ease by standing beside an obese person, whereas, to stand beside a wiry / thin person would cause the opposite reaction.

The same requirement for an accurate standard of measurement needs to be applied to the Church today. It is easy for individual congregations and denominations to find false measuring rods. We can attach ourselves to some mega-church that has the latest and greatest version of church-growth-philosophy and convince ourselves that such size means that ‘God is truly with us.’ Conversely, we can attach ourselves to some small, struggling congregation and content ourselves that all our problems stem, not from disobedience, but from the fact that we, alone, are that small, faithful remnant always to be persecuted.

Similarly, we can look at the lack of impact that the Church is having, especially in the West, upon our societies and culture. We can blame governmental interference. We can point our fingers at the so-called militant left. We can complain that the local paper will not run our pieces. We might even complain that God has not given us enough young folk to successfully complete our planned leaflet drop. All this, however, is simply illustrative of the fact that the Church has adopted the wrong standard of measurement.

The Church has one singular standard of measurement and that is God.[1] Explained more fully, it is God’s morality revealed in His Law[2] and ultimately in His Son, Jesus Christ.[3] We can distil this just a little more by saying that God’s morality revealed in His Law and in Jesus demarcates that which is pleasing to God and that which is not – life v death, obedience v disobedience; blessable v condemnable; His presence v His absence.

Now, most orthodox Christians reading this are not going to have their heads explode. Indeed, even some at the more Liberal end of the scale, who still acknowledge Scripture, will at least give a little nod. So, what is the problem? Well, the problem, in a nutshell, is the issue of theory versus practice. That which is outlined above is truth and it is the theory on which we should work as the Church. However, in practice, it is not.

The Church’s guilt lies in Her breaking one very pertinent and serious commandment – something which should never be is! – and that commandment is found in both Deuteronomy and Revelation:

You shall not add to the word which I am commanding you, nor take away from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you.

I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God shall add to him the plagues which are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book.[4]

Both texts are extremely specific in their warnings, but, sadly, the true fear and reverence for God and His standards are largely missing from the Church; thus omission and substitution become very real options. When we adopt the practice of omission and substitution, rather than submission and obedience, we place ourselves in a very precarious position. We turn from the path of life to one of death. We begin to subtly deny doctrine, which, by its very nature, becomes a subtle denial of God and the attributes of His Being.

In our day, the perceived problem is that the Church is infused with PC and not JC. Jesus Christ came to do the will of the Father, despite the great personal cost to Himself. Pain, suffering, and alienation were His because He loved His Father and was committed to obedience and the actions required by obedience:

“For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me;[5]

“My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to accomplish His work.[6]

“Father, if Thou art willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Thine be done.”[7]

This meant that Jesus was willing to affirm God’s morality as it is expressed in God’s Law and demonstrated in His own life, no matter what the consequences. Are we as equally committed to this process? No! We have moved from JC to PC. We have allowed our culture, sinful and rebellious, to lay out a charter before the Church in which this evil World demands that its sensitivities, ideals, and agendas be respected, at all costs. Disappointingly, and to the detriment of the Many, the Church has largely laid her signature to this charter.

Here, three experiences will be relayed and the ramifications of each explained:

  1. Preaching Evangelism and only Evangelism:

When it comes to this fist topic, many may ask as to the nature of the problem. Is not evangelism Biblical? Well, yes, it is Biblical, but it is still a problem. Heresy!! “How can something that is Biblical be wrong?!” Very easily. Above we quoted texts that warned about adding to or taking away from Scripture. Well, in the same vein, underemphasising or overemphasising something can be wrong. Grace is a Biblical doctrine, but this writer often speaks of the “heresy of grace” precisely because it is overemphasised to the point where antinomianism and blatant disobedience are excused under the guise of ‘grace’.

Thus, in recent years, there has been a real trend to use almost every sermon as a goad to guilt Christians into the streets to evangelise. All sorts of things are laid out before the Christian to send them on one of these all-expenses-paid guilt trips. Yet, despite decades of emphasis upon evangelism; courses on evangelism; 12 foolproof techniques to evangelism; car-boot sale evangelism; puppet-show evangelism; not to mention the probable millions invested in and spent on evangelism, the Church is not prospering. Numbers dwindle. New converts are rarely seen. Why? Precisely because of the emphasis upon evangelism.[8]

Confused? Do not be so. You see, through various Biblical texts, the Church of older ages came to speak concerning “whole counsel of God”. This is what preachers should be preaching – the whole counsel of God and nothing less. This means that everything God has revealed should be fodder for the preacher. Not so anymore. Through being enamoured with PC and not JC, we have now subscribed to the “hole counsel of God”. The term sounds remarkably similar, but this new version leads to a completely different place.

The “hole counsel” is exactly what it says: It leaves big holes in God’s counsel! These holes are left when the PC fanatics take their scalpels to God’s counsel in the like of a surgeon cutting out cankers. Let us be clear. There are no cankers in the whole counsel of God, yet those infused with PC rather than JC perceive that there are cankers. Consequently, they excise this bit and that bit and then vainly try and make it look more appropriate with some ill-fitting and hastily applied patches, hurriedly sewn into place.

To some, this might just seem like just a piece of wild poetry that may sound pleasing, but which lacks substance. Fair enough. Let us then look at some practical examples.

1. When the Westminster Divines wrote their catechism, their first question was: What is man’s chief and highest end? They answered that it was “to glorify God and fully to enjoy Him forever.” This quote accurately reflects what Scripture teaches. God should be, indeed, must be, First! Yet, what we find in the preachers infused with PC is a subtle shift away from God being first. Their priority becomes sinful man and his desires.

We see this, for example in our worship services. Worship should be God-centred. We come to show the worth of God. Worship, by definition, is, therefore, for those who know God through Christ and wish, as a consequence, to express that worth. Not so, to the PC brigade. We want to welcome rebellious sinners (the unsaved) into our midst. We do not wish to offend them, so we will make some changes to accommodate them in the hope that we do not offend them. In this instant, our gaze is no longer firmly fixed on God and what He says is appropriate for and in worship, but we have turned to the rebel to ask for his opinion. Whether we go any further than this is irrelevant. Our eye is taken off God. We have, in essence, committed idolatry, because we have allowed something else other than the dictates of God to influence or decision making.

2. Following this turning from God to the sinner, it is inevitable that the Church will no longer stay true to the Doctrines that God has declared. When we seek to court the rebel, we will, of necessity, not wish to offend them. After all, they will not stay long in our midst if their conscience, lifestyle, and thought patterns are constantly assailed.

Thus, it all starts with a toning down. We may start with the Doctrine of Sin. The Bible says sin is “lawlessness”.[9] Oh, but we cannot tell the rebel that he is the living equivalent of the despotic bad guy in the old Western. So, we tone it down. Sin is … feelings of self-doubt; feelings of inadequacy; a failure to love oneself appropriately, and so on. Having first toned things down, it then becomes requisite to be vague and nonspecific. Having changed the definition of sin, then we must deal in turn with the doctrines of Hell and Salvation, which both the impinge upon the Person and Work of Jesus the Christ.

Jesus came to save us because of sin – a state of being that places us in opposition to God and thereby unable to ever enjoy His presence because, as a sinner, we now hate everything concerning God. The unsaved go to Hell as punishment for their rebellion. To be saved, one must be washed in the blood of Christ to once more be in a position of desiring and enjoying God’s presence. Hmmm, but we have just made sin a subjective, emotional-come-mental state that has nothing to do with transgressing God’s Law. Which means, God is not really going to send someone to eternal punishment because of self-doubt. What then of Jesus? If sin is redefined, Hell lessened or eradicated, what role does Jesus play. We do not really need a Saviour in that big sense, because … you know, umm, sin is a bad feeling, so now Jesus is nothing more than a cosmic psychologist whose always open?!?

Of equal importance, at this juncture, is the whole question of the applicability of God’s Law. Through the influence of PC, God’s Law has, in the main, been pushed off stage and hidden from sight. Why? Precisely because the ultimate aim of PC is at odds with the aim of JC. Just as in the ‘evolution v Creation’ debate, here too, there is no common ground between PC and JC; yet there are Christians and others that are trying to yoke these concepts together. However, to do so means the eradication of the point of conflict, which, in this instance, is God’s Law.

As we saw above, Jesus came to save the sinner as he is defined Biblically – a transgressor of God’s Law. This means that the sinner must pay the debt for his infraction of the Law. It means that if he cannot, someone else must or the sinner will be justly condemned. Enter Jesus! He alone has the credit, through a life of obedience, to offer Himself in the stead of the debtor. This is restitution or propitiation that is in accord with God’s Law. But wait … There is more!

Interestingly, in the PC universe there is a great emphasis upon evangelism. Yet, as we noted, it is often ineffectual. Why? Precisely because of its meddling with and downplaying of God’s Law. The Law of God defines sin. The Law of God outlines the remedy for sin. So far so good. Yet, what is missing today is the third part: God’s Law is the only thing that shows the rebellious sinner how destitute he is in the sight of God and thereby magnifies Jesus the Christ as the only One through Whom he can have peace with God. Consider these words:

Therefore, the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, that we may be justified by faith.[10]

Now we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, that every mouth may be closed, and all the world may become accountable to God; because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.[11]

Paul’s version, the version of a man enamoured with JC and not PC, is vastly different to that of the moderns. Paul did not consider God’s Law to be passé, a mere relic of the past that belonged to some angry, lightning-bolt throwing god. No, Paul understood it to be essential to his Gospel, for it was the very thing that showed the sinner his need, magnified Jesus as the sinners only hope, and as the means through which the Holy Spirit works to draw men to Christ.

The Apostle’s theory of salvation was wholly Biblical and focussed rightly on God’s Law – the sinner is so because he transgressed the Law; his restitution is outlined in the Law; being a sinner he thinks he is alright until he is confronted with God’s Law, which, like a huge mirror, shows him warts and all; thus, the sinner is shown that Jesus and his cross are the only means of salvation.

Compare this with the evangelism of PC: The Law is passe, it is now about grace; they don’t want to offend the sinner otherwise he may stop listening, so they push Law and doctrine aside; they preach Jesus as Saviour, but will not dangle the sinner over the precipice to gaze into the pit of Hell, so what is it exactly that Jesus saves from and why is He necessary?

Evangelism apart from the Law of God is an exercise in Humanistic psychology and amounts to little more than making people feel good about themselves while they stand in the mud and mire. It does not bring change; indeed, it cannot bring change precisely because it does not magnify Christ. The man who feels content or is made to feel content with himself whilst in the mud and mire, will never cry out or experience the wonder of the Psalmist: The Lord, He heard my Cry! The Lord, He lifted me out of the miry pit. The Lord, He gave me a firm place to stand. The Lord, He set me upon the Rock, which is Jesus the Christ. The Lord, He put a song of worshipful praise in my mouth.

3. For this third point, we will do an about face. If the preachers are predominantly preaching on evangelism, their preaching always heading in one direction, especially a direction akin to that outlined above, let us pause and ask, “What, then, are they not preaching?” If the whole counsel of God becomes the “hole” counsel, if pursuing the evangelistic mantra means changing doctrine, lessening consequence, and becoming vague on specifics, we must confront an equally grave consequence, namely, the man of God is never equipped for his task here on earth.

All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.[12] This is a well-known text. It is often used as proof text for the doctrine of the Inspiration of Scripture. However, to focus on that point is really to miss the point of the point. Scripture is inspired; it is God-breathed. Therefore, it is able to fulfil the purpose for which it has been given, viz, that God’s people are equipped and perfectly fitted for the work in which they are called to engage.

The simple question, then, is, ‘How is the man of God made adequate, if he is never exposed to the whole counsel of God?’

Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven.[13] Another well-known text. Jesus lays this command at our feet as He concludes His discourse on the essential nature of the Christian as salt and light. Note well, please, that verse fifteen emphatically makes the point that lights are not lit to be placed under an up-turned bucket. No, they are placed high, in the open, so that the light reaches to the furthest possible extent.

Applying this text, we are once more faced with the fact that the Christian must be obviously different from the man of the World. The Christian must possess personal holiness. He must be righteous and upright. He must be Christlike. Not in some metaphorical or spiritualised manner, but in heart and reality. The very cruel irony of the evangelism bandwagon is seen right here. Earlier, the point was made to the effect that we see little fruit from evangelism today precisely because of the overemphasis on evangelism. This may have confused some. However, it is really very simple. One of the key ingredients to true Biblical evangelism has always been the quality of the lives lived by the Christian.

Peter speaks of giving a reason for the hope that is in you “to anyone who asks.” Why would anyone ask about that hope if your life is hopeless? If the victory of Christ Jesus is not evident; if light is not your nature; if you are a decaying and not preserving (salt); if you are unequipped, because you have not been corrected and trained so as to be perfectly adequate, why would anyone come and ask about the quality of your life that is so patently absent? Peter’s challenge begins with these words: Sanctify – set apart – Christ as Lord in your hearts! These words naturally lead to the discovery of another eroded doctrine, thanks to PC, and that is the Doctrine of Sanctification – our being set apart wholly unto God for His work, His purposes, and His glory.

With the erosion of sanctification and the lowering of the spiritual bar, it is often very hard to distinguish Christian from non-Christian. As the Church has become infused with PC and not JC, we see the impact more and more. Christians are no longer victorious over the World; they are conquered by the world. They are weighed down with worry, they have the same hang-ups as their neighbours, they take the same anti-depressants, they attend the same psychologists, and even the moral codes, that once marked the Church as different, no longer stand. As a boy, divorce, marital unfaithfulness, domestic violence, and apostasy were rarely heard of in the Church. Now, one does not need to look too far to uncover any of these vices.

Jesus said to Peter: “Tend My lambs” and “Shepherd My sheep.” [14]

Jesus, speaking through Paul, gave us this insight: And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fulness of Christ. [15]

Please note the emphasis upon Christ’s people. They are to be tended, shepherded, and equipped for the work of service. Please also note the emphasis upon maturity and how that maturity culminates in Jesus the Christ. This means teaching men how to be good heads of households, good husbands, and good fathers. It means teaching women the art of submission and true beauty in their roles as wives, mothers, and fellow heirs of the Kingdom. It means teaching on what makes a good employee, citizen, and societal participant. It means teaching and training God’s people how to glorify God even in the most mundane of circumstances.  It means teaching them how to apply God’s morality every day. None of these things can be attained through PC. They can only be attained in and through JC.

When the preacher becomes enamoured with the modern evangelistic bandwagon, and other non-Biblical bandwagons beside, people suffer. The rebel suffers because he never hears what he needs to hear in order to convict him of his sin and lead him to repentance in Jesus Christ. PC cannot do this. JC can and does. The Christians suffer because they are no longer conformed to JC,[16] finding in Him light and life, victory and purpose; rather they are given PC, where they are erroneously taught that being helpless, victimised, weighed down, and burdened will give them a place of commonality with the rebel and therefore an opportunity to evangelise. Sadly, the PC scenario is akin to two drug addicts lying in a filthy room, both shooting up, one enjoying it, the other speaking about the virtues of being clean, but with no credibility to his words precisely because his situation is no different.

  1. Disunity and denouncing Brothers:

The second experience involves the ‘Israel Falou’ saga. This topic has been tackled elsewhere, thus, for this article focus will fall upon the current disunity in the Church that is associate with PC and not JC.

The Sunday following Israel Falou’s publication of a Biblical text on social media, we went to church. The sermon that day focussed upon this publication and the subsequent furore. Many things were said in a vain attempt to sound orthodox, but all this unravelled when the preacher basically stated that ‘Israel Falou had brought the name of Jesus Christ into disrepute’.[17]

If this is indeed a fact, then, logically, every time a preacher preaches a text that confronts both sin and sinner, he too would be lowering Christ’s name. Yet, (puzzled expression) isn’t the preacher meant to confront the sinner with the truth of Who Jesus Christ truly is and why He alone can reconcile unto God? Is he not meant, in all things, to present truth and reality?

Therefore, the question must be asked, ‘What was the preacher’s real beef with Falou’s comments?’

Sad to say, the answer boiled down, mostly, to another modern error, “Its not what he said, it’s how he said it!” This saying has become more popular over the last couple of decades and it too must be denounced as a pernicious evil. Inherent in this saying is the idea that truth can be dismissed if the hearer does not appreciate the tone in which something is said. Thus, the veracity of the statement and the statements message become secondary to the terms in which it is couched.

Off course, we must not be unnecessarily belligerent when delivering the message of Scripture. We are told, are we not, to speak the truth in love. Yet, it is precisely at this point that we encounter the dilemma. If we truly love, we will speak the message that needs to be heard and that message is the truth as God has revealed it. We can turn this 180 degrees. We receive the message from Jesus and because we love Him, we will speak that message as it was given, without alteration. In both these instances, love and the message go hand in hand. This is Biblical. This fulfils the two great Commandments. Loving God and neighbour, we speak what is required of us by God and that which will benefit our neighbour because it is God’s Word – the Word that saves and edifies.

Here, we must also underscore the fact that Bible’s emphasis in speaking and preaching falls upon the attitude of the speaker and not the hearer. The Bible is abundantly clear that fallen and rebellious man does not seek reconciliation with God. In fact, the rebel’s hearing of God’s Word is akin to a vampire being flung into the midday sun or Gollum being tied with an Elvish rope – “It burns us!” In such situations, the rebel hearing God’s truth will, unless there is a work of grace by the Holy Spirit, recoil from that word and protest vehemently at the sound in his ears. This is the case. This was the case. This will ever be the case.[18]

Please, you are implored, understand this point well! The sinner’s reaction to the Gospel – the Whole Counsel of God – can never be the measure of success or the reason for changing either the presentation of or the Gospel itself. Never!

Enter the gospel infused with PC. Here, as we noted above, the gaze has left the Holy Father and now rests upon the sinner. With this change of focus comes an unbiblical emphasis, viz, the sinner’s reaction must be considered. We want the sinner to listen to the message, so we encourage his feedback so that we can tweak and modify, discard and rearrange, all in the vain hope that the message may get through, not because of the power of the Holy Spirit, but because of our craft as men.

Let us use some picture language. How do we allow a vampire to walk unharmed in the streets? There are only two ways. He must walk in darkness (the cover of night) or we must blot out the sun, both of which amount to the same thing. Similarly, Gollum cannot abide the Elvish rope because the natures of each are incompatible one with the other. So, too, the Gospel will never sit aright in the sinner’s ear. The nature of each is incompatible one with the other. Hence, the sinner must, by the power of the Holy Spirit, have his inherent, sinful nature changed. Consequently, the reviling’s of the sinner should never be considered a just cause to edit or modify the Gospel – indeed there never is a just reason for such an act. We are forbidden to add to or take from God’s Word. Paul tells us that even if an angel brings us another Gospel, that one is to be accursed.[19] Why then would be undertake such an evil task to satisfy the burning ears of a sinner? Yet, undertake, they do, and in so doing the PCites rend the body of Christ and nullify the Chief means of grace – the preaching of a full and unfettered Gospel.

As the illustration of the Israel Falou saga shows, this preacher was willing to take his stand against a fellow Christian who was proclaiming God’s Word because he believed that his efforts at effective evangelism would now be hampered by such negative press. This preacher was concerned that his efforts at bridge building would now collapse because Israel Falou took a public stand on a supposedly sensitive topic. This affront to PC could not go unchallenged. Armed with his diatribe and not the Word of God, this preacher ascended his pulpit and essentially shamed a brother in Christ because he had the courage to stand up and stand upon God’s Word.

Such actions are infused with PC not JC. They smack of the pride of man and of ego, not of the humility that Christ expects of His own. These actions tear at Christ’s church; they rend the body, and they sow discord. Denounce a man if he is a heretic, by all means, but denounce a brother for stating what the Bible says! Alas, how the mighty have fallen.

  1. Preaching the Text – Kind of, maybe?

This last example comes from the Seminary classroom, the Homiletics class to be precise. Students are paired. One student picks a text to be preached, the other has the responsibility of preaching that text. Camped out by two students, it was fascinating to listen to their discussion. Student A put forward one of his favourite texts. It was a Psalm, a good Psalm, a well know Psalm. What was of interest was Student B’s response. Recollecting the events as accurately as possible due to the passage of time, Student B first recoiled. Then there was a subtle hint that maybe Student A should pick a different text. Then came the stronger offer, “Maybe something from the New Testament.” The onlooker’s spidey-senses tingled. The mind began to question, “Why this hesitation?” The answer that came to mind immediately was PC not JC.

Student B pushed back a little more, but, thankfully, Student A stuck to his guns. After all, this was a text that he chose because it meant a lot to him personally. Now for the test, the actual preaching. Would it deal with the text and fill it with JC or would the PC infiltrate so that the audience would witness some fast and furious footwork of the type that would make Fred Astaire proud.

The text? Psalm 139. Please feel free to read it now:

O Lord, Thou hast searched me and known me. Thou dost know when I sit down and when I rise up; Thou dost understand my thought from afar. Thou dost scrutinize my path and my lying down, and art intimately acquainted with all my ways. Even before there is a word on my tongue, Behold, O Lord, Thou dost know it all. Thou hast enclosed me behind and before, and laid Thy hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is too high, I cannot attain to it. Where can I go from Thy Spirit? Or where can I flee from Thy presence? If I ascend to heaven, Thou art there; If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, Thou art there. If I take the wings of the dawn, If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea, even there Thy hand will lead me, And Thy right hand will lay hold of me. If I say, “Surely the darkness will overwhelm me, And the light around me will be night,” Even the darkness is not dark to Thee, And the night is as bright as the day. Darkness and light are alike to Thee. For Thou didst form my inward parts; Thou didst weave me in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to Thee, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Thy works, and my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from Thee, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth. Thine eyes have seen my unformed substance; And in Thy book they were all written, the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them. How precious also are Thy thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand. When I awake, I am still with Thee. O that Thou wouldst slay the wicked, O God; Depart from me, therefore, men of bloodshed. For they speak against Thee wickedly, And Thine enemies take Thy name in vain. Do I not hate those who hate Thee, O Lord? And do I not loathe those who rise up against Thee? I hate them with the utmost hatred; They have become my enemies. Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts; And see if there be any hurtful way in me, and lead me in the everlasting way.[20]

Reading the Psalm may even be a litmus test for the reader. Did you find the Psalm encouraging or were there some … ‘Oh, what is that theological term? Oh, yes!’ … icky bits?

This is a good Psalm, indeed a great Psalm. Student A does well to treasure this Psalm for the comfort, hope, and guidance that it brings to him. Indeed, it can be said with confidence that Student A treasures this Psalm precisely because he is full of and enamoured with JC. This, however, cannot be truly said of Student B. What became evident through this activity within the homiletics class was the fact that PC had begun to take a place in Student B’s heart.

The evidence for this conclusion was partly presented in his opening statements to Student A when he wanted to change the text to a New Testament text. The second, but more conclusive evidence, was found in the sermon itself. Student B preached all the way through the text, verse by verse, until he came to these verses: Do I not hate those who hate Thee, O Lord? And do I not loathe those who rise up against Thee? I hate them with the utmost hatred; They have become my enemies. At this point, no words were offered that might have explained the text; nor was any help given to the listener in the form of an interpretive key. There was not even an acknowledgement that, as a student, the understanding of this part of the text eluded him. No, these words simply sailed through the Bermuda Triangle of PC and vanished form the text.

Is this assessment harsh? No! As with all these movements there are discernible patterns. We noted earlier how PC turns one’s eyes from our holy God and refocuses them on rebellious men. We noted how Doctrine must be altered, modified, toned down, and reinterpreted. Along with this comes a preference for the New Testament. Why? Because Jesus is there? Maybe? Predominantly, however, the desire for the New Testament, we fear, is less motivated by the presence of Jesus and more by the absence of strong language, such as that found in Psalm 139.

PC tells us that the Old Testament is full of violence, hate, and darkness, whereas the New Testament is tolerance, love, and light. When your mantra is ‘evangelism and only evangelism’, then tolerance, love, and light, trump the mislabelled violence, hate, and darkness.

Proof of this can be found in the Israel Falou saga, mentioned above. The man quoted an exclusive New Testament text and was howled down by those from without and within the Church. It was the New Testament that was quoted, but it did not measure up to the tolerance, love, and light scenario, so the messenger had to be shot—some of those involved in the denouncing from within the church still have enough orthodoxy not to denounce the text of Scripture, but they do not want anyone pointing out that their PC emperor is not wearing any clothes.

Here, in essence, is the problem with PC. Before it modified any of the Doctrines mentioned in this article, it had already made some significant modifications to the Biblical Doctrines regarding fallen man and God Himself.

The first rejection was the Bible’s description of fallen man as being dead in trespass and sin and under the condemnation of God. It was decided that such a description was hardly appealing. Extremely hard to hold a conversation of the “How to win friends and influence people” type, when your description of them makes the despotic bad guy in the Western look good.

The second rejection or modification courtesy of the PCites was to arrange an ‘image consultant’ for God. He needed some help in trying to portray a better image to the wider reading public. Thus, the anger issues, the lightning bolts, the ‘I hate …!’ comments, the ‘My people disappoint Me!’ remarks, and the thing with all the rules— ‘What’s that about?’— all had to go. Of course, there is nothing new here. Marcion took a pair of scissors to his Bible; Declared the God of the Old Testament to be a sort of tribal deity with anger management issues; and proclaimed Jesus to be sent from a different “god”, the Father. The New Testament was considered to be under the influence of the Jewish god, hence the scissors. Paul was the only true apostle of Jesus, but even his works were not spared the scissors. The only real difference, thanks to the PC brigade, is that we are no longer allowed to call people heretics—the appellation that was correctly applied to Marcion.

Now, please understand, Student B may not raise his right hand and swear to all these points. Most do not and will not. Nonetheless, the evidence suggests that there has already been a subtle shift in his thinking. Logically, if the Holy Spirit does not convict him of this shift, then his future ministry is, more than likely, to be tainted by this movement. It may begin with omitting a few lines from a text here and there, but gradually, a few lines will become whole texts, then complete topics and before long the whole counsel is nothing but the hole counsel.[21]

By contrast, Student A is far more assured because his stand is infused with JC. He understands, truly, that love to God comes before love to any other.[22] That is precisely why he finds no trouble with hating God’s enemies. The true believer in Jesus Christ will hate what God hates and love what God loves. The fact that Student A, along with the Psalmist, declare hatred for God’s enemies is nothing less than an absolute declaration of their love for God. The PCites cannot see past the word “hate” to grasp and understand that what is on display in this text is actually an unequivocal chorus of love. Do we not gather in worship and sing the words of Psalm 1: How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night.[23]

One cannot love God whilst batting for the other team. One cannot truly love God whilst espousing the playbook of the other team. No. Love to God is singular. The command is to love God with all your heart, mind, and strength. Thankfully, men like Student A understand that point, precisely because they are infused with JC and not PC. A man and his God; loved and loving; known intimately by his God, warts and all, and loved. Searched and found wanting, yet loved. A man. Yes, just a man, but a man who loves God absolutely. A redeemed man, acknowledging all his faults, with but one prayer on His lips – Father make me more like Jesus! This man knows His God encompasses him. This man knows that his God is everywhere. This man knows that should his foot slip, all he will know are the everlasting arms around and about. This man knows that God knit him in the womb. This man knows that before his eyes ever opened, he was loved absolutely by his God. Therefore, this man, Student A and those of his ilk, will absolutely hate what God hates and they will do so because they are filled with the Spirit of JC, a Spirit that loves and obeys the One, True, and Living God.

Lord, please, please, fill the land with men like this; men of whom the world is not worthy; for they are the true evangelists. They are the true culture changes. They are the true light bearers. They are so, because they are infused with and therefore diffuse the light and life of Jesus Christ, and like Him, their Saviour, they have no greater pleasure or purpose than to honour their God.


If the Church is to return to and be faithful to Her mission, then She must repent of Her sins, forsake false standards, cling to what is good, and have nothing to do with the vain philosophies of the World. She must return to and measure Herself always by the correct standard. She must be willing to see through words to content and action. What do I mean? Simply this: It is easy to witness historic God- words and to hear the lingo of the so-called faithful, but Jesus looked at and He looks for the fruit. Does your Christian life, does your congregation’s life, bear the marks, the fruit, of being enamoured with Jesus the Christ or has it settled for orthodox type words whilst all the time holding to the doctrines of PC culture?

Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, the Life, THE Standard. Brethren, accept no substitutes!


[1] Leviticus 19:2; Matthew 5:48.

[2] Deuteronomy 8:3 quoted by Jesus in Matthew 4:4.

[3] Hebrews 1:1-2; John 10:37-38.

[4] New American Standard Bible. (1986). (electronic edition., Dt 4:2; Re 22:18–19). La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation. See also Dt 12:32; Prov 30:6. All Scripture references are from this source.

[5] John 6:38 (NASB)

[6] Jn 4:34.

[7] Lk 22:42.

[8] When we speak of this overemphasis on evangelism, we have two things in mind. First, there is the goading to be about saving the lost as the Christians highest and only pursuit in life – an unholy message that often does more harm than good. Secondly, this emphasis on evangelism often sees the application of the sermon boiled down to, “Come to Jesus and be saved!” Such a constant emphasis in application robs the Christian. How so? I’ve been a Christian for x number of years, I may be a new Christian, so the question, “What comes next?” is never answered.

[9] 1 John 3:4.

[10] Ga 3:24.

[11] Ro 3:19–20.

[12] 2 Ti 3:16–17.

[13] Mt 5:16.

[14] Jn 21:15–17.

[15] Eph 4:11–14.

[16] Romans 8:29.

[17] A lengthy phone conversation was also undertaken.

[18] Acts 17:32-33 clearly portrays the two outcomes of preaching. See also Acts 14:1-2; Acts 2:12-13; John 10:31-39.

[19] Galatians 1:8.

[20] Ps 139:1–24.

[21] This aspect can even bee seen in how a preacher approaches the text. One such preacher was witnessed rearranging the text, that is, preaching through it is a different order, so that he could end on the verse he wanted with the emphasis he wanted.

[22] Matthew 10:37 ff.

[23] Ps 1:1–2.

The Love of Christ Constrains

Changes can be subtle and subtle changes can be wrong. A wise Christian once said: “Wisdom is the ability to distinguish ‘right’ from ‘almost right’!”

One such subtle change, which has had a terrible impact on Christianity, has to do with the love of Christ. “Now”, you ask, “how can the love of Christ ever be wrong?” As the above saying suggests, it can be wrong when it is almost right.

The problem has come about and is seen in a one–sided love. The love of Christ is that in which the Christian basks. It is the love of Christ that has set the Christian free. In these views, the love of Christ is only a permissive love that enables the Christian to do what he enjoys most.

Is this view of Christ’s love correct? The answer is, no. Whilst the love of Christ gives to the Christian many wondrous benefits and incalculable riches, autonomy is not one of them. By this we mean that Christ did not set us free to a vacuum where we are self-determining kings. On the contrary, Christ’s love set us free to serve God. Jesus’ love set us free so that we could be priestly-kings in His Kingdom, in order to serve Him faithfully and fully.

Missing from the Christian’s view of Christ’s love in our day is the concept found in the hymn, “For the might Thine arm”, which states, For the love of Christ constraining.” As a child growing up, I remember this phrase being used. Christians spoke freely of the fact that Christ’s love constrained.

As individualism has made inroads into the Church, I no longer hear this phrase. Rather, as alluded to earlier, Christ’s love is now simply viewed as a permissive element in which Jesus smiles upon any and all activities of the Christian.

Such should not be the case. The love of Christ should constrain us. The love of Christ should motivate us to obedient action. Likewise, the love of Christ should dissuade us from disobedient actions. The love of Christ should be everything to us. It should be our health and happiness.

Thus, we must ask, “How can we be happy, if we mock the love of Christ?” Someone close to me married an unbeliever. When challenged, their response was, “Do you not want me to be happy?” Our response to that was, “If you are a Christian, how can you be happy when you disobey Christ?”

The love of Christ is a two-way street. Christ’s absolute love to us should be reflected in our love for Him absolutely. This means that we must appreciate and understand the infinite cost of Jesus death; the incomprehensible depth of the statement, “loved before the foundation of the world”; and the implications of, “you are not your own but have been bought with a price – therefore glorify God in your body!”

We simply cannot say that we are encompassed by the love of Christ, when we walk in disobedience to Christ. We cannot say that Christ is our all in all, when we do not love Jesus absolutely by absolutely keeping His commands. Inane concepts like, “God looks at the heart” simply do not suffice. Yes, God does look at the heart. He looks at the heart to see if it is genuinely filled with the love of Jesus, His beloved Son. God looks at the heart to see whether or not the works that come forth are those of outward show or those constrained by the true love of Christ.

Consider Jesus words to the Church at Ephesus: “But I have this against you, that you have left your first love” (Revelation 2:4).

These Ephesians were good. They could spot a heretic at one hundred paces. They could rightly divide the word of God. They had sound doctrine. What they did not have was a genuine love for Christ. This is not to say that they did not love Jesus in any way. Rather, it is to emphasise the fact that spotting heretics and having right theology became an end in itself. They did not learn to eradicate falsehood so that Jesus would be honoured. They did not learn doctrine so that Christ would be glorified. Rather, these elements became an end in themselves.

Brethren, please let the love of Christ constrain us in our day. Give up the radical disobedience of self. Give up the false idea of doctrine for doctrine’s sake. In all our actions, let us be conscious that we act for Christ and His glory. Let us be constrained to action and from action on the basis that we love Jesus and that it would break our hearts irreparably to cause Him any hurt.

The modern view of permissive love is a false view. Christ’s love constrains, and rightly so. How could we not give our all for Him who held nothing back from us? Jesus love for us saw Him forsaken of God, hung on a tree, cursed by His own creation, despised of man; all to purchase a people for God. How little a thing is it then, that the love of Jesus be allowed to govern every word, thought, and action of His people.

May the love of Christ constrain us completely to an obedience which magnifies and glorifies our beautiful Jesus!

Sin: A Disgrace

It is an unfortunate reality of our day that the doctrine of Sin has been pushed to the side and labelled as “unpalatable”. Sin should never be treated this way. Sin, in the form of a doctrine and belief, should be kept firmly before our eyes.

Does this seem strange? To some it might. Through the influence of psychology Christians have tended to “shy away” from anything that might be damaging to a positive view of self. The problem with this concept is twofold. First, it is based in secular philosophy and reasoning. Second, as a consequence, it is at odds with Scripture.

Through the fall, man became a sinner. Man is not a sinner because he sins. Rather, he sins because he is a sinner. In other words, we are not labelled because we mess up. We mess up because sin is our inherent nature.

If we jettison this belief and pay it no heed, what are the consequences? They are grave! They are dire! They are destructive!

The late bishop Ryle rightly said that we can never truly appreciate the wonders of Christ’s sacrifice for sin until we understand the depths and depravity of sin. Even as redeemed people, we should be on guard against sin and its unholy consequences. This we cannot do if we refuse to acknowledge that sin exist.

How many of us would drive a car at highway speed with our eyes closed? None! We understand that unless our eyes are open it is impossible to avert tragedy by navigating our way around obstacles. So it is in the Christian life. If we do not acknowledge sin and our inherent weakness, then we will be involved in a collision with tragic consequences.

Proverbs 14:34 states: “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.

Whilst reading the Scriptures the reality of this text was brought home to me. I read of David’s encounter with Bathsheba (2 Samuel 11). It is absolutely tragic! Absolutely. Reading it brought me to the edge of tears.

Here is David. He is God’s man. David is God’s king. He has just been promised an everlasting kingdom and descendants forever upon his throne. From these lofty heights we plunge to David the Adulterer, Murderer, and Exile. David’s household is ravaged. David’s throne is savaged. David’s concubines were ravished. Why? All because David wanted to reach out to a little ewe lamb that was the property of and precious to another!

David not only sinned, but he did what most sinners do – he attempted to hide his sin thereby aggravating the situation. Scripture states: “The thing that David had done was evil in the sight of the Lord” (2 Samuel 11:27). God could not be fooled.

This is tragic enough. However, when we analyse this episode even further, we have to ask, ‘What did David hope to gain?’ From the outset he was told that Bathsheba was married (v 3). Even though “the woman was very beautiful in appearance”, that should have made no difference. David already had wives. Consider this statement regarding David’s wife Abigail: “the woman was intelligent and beautiful in appearance”. If we take Scripture seriously, we must see that David already had one wife of considerable beauty. So why did David act this way?

The answer is Sin. David had become proud and arrogant. He had taken the blessing of the Lord to mean that he could do anything without consequence. David was wrong! David found out that Sin has dire consequences. This one act of desire nearly destroyed David and his kingdom. We must also remember that the child of this illicit union died under judgement.

David made many mistakes in this episode of his life. However, they are all traceable to one flaw – David failed to heed God’s word! David disobeyed Deuteronomy 17:17 – he multiplied wives. He disobeyed Exodus 20:14 – he committed adultery. He disobeyed Exodus 20:13 – he committed murder.

What is the antidote? The Psalmist stated it succinctly: “Thy word I have treasured in my heart, that I may not sin against Thee” (Psalm119:11).

As fallen creatures, redeemed by Jesus, we still suffer from the weakness of the flesh (James 4:1). To shut our eyes to this fact is to court danger, horrific danger. The Psalmist studied and treasured God’s word. That Word not only taught him of righteousness, it, by contrast, showed him sin and warned him against that path.

Friends, remember David’s fall. See the outcome of this sin. Let it be etched vividly into your mind’s eye. One false step cost David dearly. It may not have cost him his salvation, but it robbed him, his family, and his country of peace, harmony, prosperity, and blessing.

Brethren, please do not shut your eyes to sin or its consequences. Treasure God’s Word in your heart as the only means of making sure that we do not replicate David in this matter and thereby bring upon ourselves and our families great calamity because we have sinned against the Lord.

Know God. Know your enemy. Stand firm!

Knowing God

Christian! Are you battle weary? Do you find yourself quietly questioning the Lord as to what He is doing or not seemingly doing?

There is no shame in admitting that you answer these questions in the affirmative. In fact, it is a positive that you do ask such questions. In asking these questions, you are asserting two beliefs. The first is that you are tired of the seeming triumphs of a “wicked and perverse generation” over the righteous. The second is that you realise that revival and reform can only come from the hand of God.

The other day, I sat in my study and asked God, “What can I do to bring revival?” Some may see this as arrogant; see this as God’s hand being forced by man. Is this the case? Not at all. First, God’s hand can never “be forced” by the will of man. Second, God desires His hand to be moved by the prayers and supplications of His people. God desires to bless His people.

This is made abundantly clear to us in Scripture. Jesus said as much in John 16:23-24 saying, “Truly, truly, I say to you, if you shall ask the Father for anything, He will give it to you in My name. “Until now you have asked for nothing in My name; ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be made full.

What then can we do to bring revival?

First, and most obviously, we must pray.

Second, we must set a Godly example through obedience to God’s word.

Third, we must act and not grow tired of acting in and for righteousness.

Fourth, we must carry the acts of the wicked to God for His attention.

Fifth, we must ask God to act and not be afraid to ask forcefully.

Sixth, we must be patient, persist in doing good, and continue to implore God to act.

These steps are not invented by the mind of modern man. These are the steps of a righteous man, an oracle, who sought to know and express His desire for God in all of life. This genuine desire to know God and obey God often landed this man in “hot water”. We know that he was not a perfect man. He stumbled. He fell. Yet, he knew that in every circumstance of life, Yahweh was the answer. Note please, Yahweh did not have the answer; Yahweh was the answer!

Who is this mysterious person? We know him by many names. Most commonly, we call him the Psalmist.

In Psalm 119:121-128 we read these words:

I have done justice and righteousness; Do not leave me to my oppressors.

Be surety for Thy servant for good; Do not let the arrogant oppress me.

My eyes fail with longing for Thy salvation, And for Thy righteous word.

Deal with Thy servant according to Thy lovingkindness, And teach me Thy statutes.

I am Thy servant; give me understanding, That I may know Thy testimonies.

It is time for the Lord to act, For they have broken Thy law.

Therefore I love Thy commandments Above gold, yes, above fine gold.

Therefore I esteem right all Thy precepts concerning everything, I hate every false way.

Please note how each of the steps outlined is a step followed by the Psalmist.

The Psalmist begins with a confident assertion that he has been obedient to the Law of God. He has not just believed; he has actually done justice and righteousness. His is not a theoretical knowledge. It is knowledge in action.

We then note that the Psalmist gives voice to those who “oppress”. In other words, the Psalmist has opposition. There are some who care not either for his doctrine or his way of life.

In this “oppression” we can sense the tired notes of the Psalmist’s voice. He asks that the Lord spare him the “oppression of the arrogant.” Yet, even in this trial, the Psalmist will not surrender. He takes heart. He is encouraged. He continues to “look for Yahweh’s salvation and His word (or promise)”.

What an encouragement to all of us. This man was oppressed. He realised that the source of his oppression was the fact that he believed God and obeyed God. Yet, he refused to be shaken from this stand or deviate from this course.

Take heed of his response. The Psalmist not only continues to look for the fulfillment of Yahweh’s word and promise, he  asks Yahweh to “teach” him more statutes; he asks for “understanding” so that he might rightly “know” Yahweh’s testimonies. The Psalmist wants more! In our language, he may be termed a “sucker for punishments.” In Biblical language, his soul hungered for the knowledge of God. Not only is the Psalmist not content with where he is at, he wants to know more of God’s Law so that he can do more justice and righteousness.

Wow! How do we compare with this? The Psalmist realises that he is oppressed because of his faith; yet his response is not to decrease his faith; to make some vain attempt to slip under the radar; or to compromise. No, his reaction is to ask God for more of everything that constitutes faith and Godly practice!

Then the Psalmist arrives at the critical juncture. He understands that the oppressors are outside of his power and jurisdiction. Therefore, he calls for Yahweh to act against them; whether to transform or crush. The Psalmist reinforces his plea for action on the part of Yahweh by bringing the deeds of the ungodly to Yahweh – “Look, my Father. They have broken thy Law. Your Word and testimony are despised in their eyes. Act. Vindicate Thy righteousness and Thy servant!”

With this said, the Psalmist makes affirmation of his love for the Law of God as his only standard. This Word is to him of more value than gold. This Law is “esteemed” in his sight.

Precisely because he loves God’s law, his final confession is that “he hates every false way.”

The Psalmist is a great example to us. His love for God and His Law is paramount; it is his life! How do you view God’s Law – or His Word, if you are more comfortable with that term?

The Psalmist grew weary. He faced opposition. Yet his reaction was to ask God for more faith and more practical works, which no doubt would have brought more opposition. How do we respond? Do we drop our proverbial “bundle”, seek to remain quiet, or do we come to the throne of God and plead for the fullness of the righteousness of Christ?

Lastly, we must observe the antithesis evident in the Psalmist. He so loved God and His Law that he hated all else. If it were not from God, it was repudiated. How do we fair on this point?

We must wrestle with these questions, like them or not. God does act in accord with His will. Most certainly, He acts at His time. However, we cannot use either of these as excuses for what we perceive to be God’s inaction.

In acting, God also takes note of His people, their actions, and their pleas. Are we holding God at arm’s length because we are comfortable with some sins? Do we want God to act against certain sins, but would like others to remain because we are at ease with them? When we look at the world, are we disgusted with their actions and policies or do we find them to be, for the most part, fair? Can we say, wholeheartedly, that we “hate every false way”?

The answer to these questions are tied up with the answers to our opening questions. Battle weary? Wonder why God seems silent? Could it be that we have not followed the Psalmist’s example and proven our wholehearted desire for God and His Law? Could it be that the Lord, gracious in mercy and all wise, is letting the weight of oppression rest on us until we realise that the object of our love is wrong; that the expression of our love is insincere; or that we are so out of touch with God that we do not even realise there is a problem!

Brethren, study the Psalmist. Learn from him. Seek God. Know the fullness of His love and express it back to Him in an obedient life. Jesus did not hold back His love or life from us, how dare we hold ours from Him.

Fathers! Train your Children

Reading through the Scriptures, I found two disturbing passages. Both dealt with the failure of spiritual leaders to raise their children in the Fear of the Lord.

In the first passage, we read: “Now the sons of Eli were worthless men; they did not know the Lord” (1 Samuel 2:12). The second passage, not very far along, states: “His [Samuel’s] sons, however, did not walk in his ways, but turned aside after dishonest gain and took bribes and perverted justice” (1 Samuel 8:3).

In these passages, we read of the sons of Eli and Samuel. Both men were Judges in Israel (1 Samuel 4:18; 1 Samuel 7:15). Both men were good men. Judged externally, they helped Israel to serve God. Nothing in these narratives shows Eli or Samuel as pagans, unbelievers, or the like. Not in anyway. Rather, these men are shown to be sincere. Eli rebuked his sons. When they took the Ark of the Covenant to battle, the text tells us that Eli was concerned for the Ark and not his sons (1 Samuel 4:13). Of Samuel it is said that, “the Lord appeared again at Shiloh, because the Lord revealed Himself to Samuel at Shiloh by the word of the Lord” (1 Samuel 3:21).

Consequently, both these men were what we today would call, good Christian men or, more definitively, good Christian ministers. These men attended Bibles study. They preached good sermons. They desired to obey God. They were not afraid to speak to the people in public about the things of God.

However, judged for their internal actions, we see that both men were failures as fathers. Whilst they spoke publicly concerning the Law of the Lord, they did not implement it rigorously within their homes. Both men had a theoretical stance only when it came to their households.

Eli’s sons deserved a rebuke and they received it. However, they also deserved death (Leviticus 10:3; 19:29; 21:6-7). Samuel’s sons deserved a stern rebuke at the very least (Deuteronomy 16:18-20; 27:24; Exodus 23:1-3). In all cases, these men should have been tipped from office. Yet, they were not. Both fathers soft-pedalled. They adopted a different standard, not the standard of the Lord, when it came to their sons and the instructing of their own households.

To understand the impact of this oversight or double standard, we need to see that the failure of Eli and Samuel, not only as Judges, but as representatives of the Priest and Prophet, led directly to the Israelites asking for a human king (1 Samuel 8:5). As we see later in the narrative, asking for a king was the equivalent of Israel rejecting Yahweh (1 Samuel 8:7) their One True King, who was the source of both Priest and Prophet.

The statements of Scripture regarding the sons of Eli and Samuel are very heartbreaking. The consequences of the inaction of Eli and Samuel are even more striking. God set His face not only against Eli’s sons, but against Eli’s house. Samuel’s sons become the reason for Israel to desire to be like the “other nations”. What a change! This is Yahweh’s nation. They are, by their very definition, supposed to be different, set apart, holy! Yet their desire is to be like all the other impoverished nations who do not know Yahweh. Why? Because the Judge, the Priest, and the Prophet compromised in the home!

We can cast aspersions at these men and their failures from our vantage in time and space. They warrant it. However, the position of humility might first require us to ask, “Are we doing any better?”

Fathers! Is raising truly Godly children more important to you than having them become a well paid executive or sports star? Do you spend more time caring for the eternal welfare of others than for those within your own household? Is your favourite soap-opera more important than instructing your children in the Lord? Do you worship with your children on Sunday or do you accept the unholy practice of sending them from your presence?

Confession time! Yes, I am a hypocrite! I have not always done right. However, that does not alter the fact that we fathers have a great privilege and responsibility in these matters; a Biblical call and duty in these matters; nor an excuse for the fact that right deeds were left undone.

We fathers have been appointed by God to raise and train the next generation to both love and fear Yahweh. We achieve this by training and by example. If we will not step up, who will? If we love our families, why do we shun this privilege?

May the Lord, in His compassion, open the eyes of many fathers so that they see the beauty of their God-given calling to raise up holy and faithful ones to the Lord. Fathers, teach your children of Jesus. Let the little ones come to their Covenant Redeemer. Hinder none through sloth, worldliness, unpreparedness, or inaction.


What is in a name? Understood properly, we would have to answer, “A lot!” A name describes. It explains. It divulges. All this seems strange to us because we think of names simply as a label. By extension, we have lost interest in the meaning of words; we simply use them too as a label.

The modern Church has been caught up in this fad through the general principle of Political Correctness. It is now mandatory to “be nice” to everyone and, therefore, we are told that we should not use certain words.

Two words that the Church has dropped from its vocabulary are Heresy and Apostasy. Both terms have to do with false belief. Heresy describes the false belief; Apostasy describes the action of turning to that false belief from the position of truth.

Here, I would like us to think about the terms Apostasy and Apostate.

When we speak of Apostasy, we generally use this term in the sense of a complete turning away. A Biblical example would be that of the Israelites rejecting Yahweh as King by asking for an earthly king (1 Samuel 8:4-9). However, when we analyse the situation, we see that Israel’s request was not a radical change. It was not a “bolt from the blue.”

Examining Scripture, we see that there were a number of steps along the path. Israel did not pursue the conquest of the land as they were commanded. Thus, foreign people and foreign gods remained in the land to tempt Israel. We see throughout the book of Judges an ebbing and flowing in the fortunes of Israel because they did not obey the Lord or listen to His word. We then arrive at the failure of Eli and Samuel, Judges in Israel, to discipline their sons and instruct them in the ways of Yahweh.

Accordingly, we see that there were quite a number of bricks laid that created the path to Apostasy. We may label each brick a heresy, but, regardless of the term, the path lead to Apostasy; to Israel turning away.

Brethren, are you apostatising?

That is a big question. No, I am not asking, have you turned or are you currently turning your back on the Lord so as to totally deny Jesus and His revelation. I am more interested in those individual bricks.

Friend, are their things in your life, belief, and action, here and there, which constitute Apostasy? Do you have little deviations away from the Lord Jesus and His commands?

Again, I am not speaking of trips and falls into sin. We all do this. What I am speaking of is a deliberate deviation into the drive-through of your favourite spiritual fast-food outlet knowing that you have promised your loved One that you will stick to Their diet!

These deviations are not slips and stumbles. These are deliberate course changes brought about to feed a sinful desire. You go there precisely because you want to be there and nothing will dissuade you.

Beloved brethren, beware of such deliberate deviations from Jesus Christ. Each trip to the drive-through makes it easier to go there another time and to select something else from the varied menu. Each time you go, you disappoint your loved One – The Lord Jesus Christ. Each time you go there the turning away becomes easier and the degree greater. Before long, you will find yourself permanently parked in the fast-food outlet’s car park. You will have no desire for healthy food. As to your promise to Jesus … “What promise?”

Remember the Apostle Peter’s words: “For if after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would be better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn away from the holy commandment delivered to them” … “You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard lest, being carried away by the error of unprincipled men, you fall from your own steadfastness, but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 2:20-21; 2 Peter 3:17-18).

Beloved brethren, beware the turning! No matter what the rate or degree, beware the turning! Apostasy leads from Jesus, not to Him. Apostasy is built on false belief.

Therefore, cling to the truth. Jesus Christ is God’s truth.

I Want to be With the Lord!

I want to be with the Lord!

These are the words of an 84-year-old friend. They are stirring, sobering, and admirable words. Yet, they raise some issues.

I often wonder why it takes age, aches, pains, and failing health for us to find this as our true desire and utter these words. I equally wonder why the idea of “living Christ” is viewed as a post mortem event.

Paul shows something of this conflict. He writes: “For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I am to live on in the flesh, this will mean fruitful labor for me; and I do not know which to choose. But I am hard-pressed from both directions, having the desire to depart and be with Christ, for that is very much better; yet to remain on in the flesh is more necessary for your sake. And convinced of this, I know that I shall remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy in the faith, so that your proud confidence in me may abound in Christ Jesus through my coming to you again.” (Philippians 1:21-26)

What can we learn from these words?

First, the obvious lesson is that we should desire to be with Christ. This should be part of who we are as Christians. This desire should be felt and expressed tangibly from the moment we know Christ. It should not be a desire expressed only because of age or failing health.

Second, we must understand that living or dying, our life is Christ. Jesus is Emmanuel – God with us. He is with us now through the Holy Spirit. The work we do on earth is His work, empowered and directed by His Spirit. We are His temple (1 Peter 2:5). The goal of our work should be that which is acceptable to God through Jesus.

Third, the gain of which Paul speaks is that of meeting Jesus face to face. Currently, we see through the “glass darkly” as the King Jim phrases it. Then, we shall see face to face (1 Corinthians 13:12).

Christians need to appreciate the correlation in these points. To understand Paul’s obvious conflict, we need to unpack the order of his words. Note that Paul does not say ‘life is gain’ and ‘death is Christ’. It seems as though that is the way most understand these verses. Rather, Paul shows that fulfilling his life and calling is Christ. Understood aright, Paul is arguing that death does not usher in something different, but rather more of the same in greater degree. His gain is also Christ. Death is the realisation of the fullness of Christ. The barrier of sin is torn down completely and the totality of our relationship with God in Christ can be enjoyed.

It is important to understand Paul’s words, as some have tended to look down upon this life. It is considered a ‘treading of water’ until better things come. However, if we understand Paul aright, our life here is Christ. Paul was happy to postpone the “gain” and continue to live “Christ” in order that he may serve the brethren by showing them how to live Christ – “progress” and “joy” in the faith.

Our times are in God’s hands. Our desire should always be to live Christ. However, we should not be fooled into thinking that our life here is not Christ. How can we, living Christ every moment, encourage, support, progress, or bring joy in the faith to the brotherhood?

How will you live Christ in this day; in this moment?

I am a Hater – a Godly Hater!

  1. Fairy Floss.

Playground politics, Postmodernism, and Political Correctness make a volatile and disastrous combination.

Playground politics equals bullying. Postmodernism equals a denial of Truth. Political Correctness equals a biased, pseudo-egalitarianism. In such an environment, cogent arguments, truth, fact, and even reality are dismissed. In their place come name-calling, bullying, meaningless terms and lies. This modern estate is the “fairy floss”[1] estate—you are handed a bright and colourful substance that looks real, but once you put it in your mouth it disappears! In effect, you have paid for the joy of eating nothing and remaining hungry.

In the current debate surrounding homosexual union, we are being handed many brightly coloured tidbits and asked to swallow them. Yet, once they are in our mouths they evaporate to nothing. Then, when we have the audacity to point this out, we are labelled, condemned, harangued, and treated as completely unworthy.

Two recent examples stand out:

  1. Opposition Leader, Bill Shorten, had this to say: “I don’t believe that people’s relationships and love for each other need to be submitted to a public opinion poll. … I don’t want to give the haters a chance to come out from underneath the rock and make life harder for LGBTI people.”[2]
  2. The second instance has no name and not much detail. For this I apologise. After visiting my elderly father in hospital, I was driving home and decided to listen to the radio. I came across a woman’s voice arguing for protection from “hate speech”. I can only assume that this was a debate into the removal of clause 18c from the Racial Discrimination Act. Anyway, the point of interest came when the speaker highlighted her coup de gras question that she asked of her opponents: “What hate speech do you wish to use?” She went on to announce that this question had her opponents “nonplussed” or stopped cold.

Let’s analyse these statements.

  • Please note the bullying and name-calling that come to the fore. People who have a different opinion are immediately labelled as “haters”, those who dwell under “rocks”, and those who delight to use “hate speech”.
  • In keeping with this name calling and bullying, there is an automatic assumption on the part of the speaker that their position is the correct one or the morally superior one. Thus, the opponent is labelled and pigeon-holed for no other reason than they disagree with the speaker’s point of view.

This is truly fascinating. My wife has worked for years in the health sector. Several decades ago there came a huge, government sponsored push to avoid, at all costs, “labelling language”. People were not to be pigeon-holed or labelled in a way that would cause them detriment. Now, these same governments wish to label people without cause just to win political arguments and “Brownie” points.

  • All of this leads us to ask questions regarding Morality and Truth. When the above people spoke, they did not appeal to any Absolute, they merely insisted that their opinion or view on this subject be accepted as absolute. In such a situation, who is the umpire? Does Bill Shorten win simply because he is Opposition Leader?

Time to connect the dots. The reason that we are subject to bullying and harassment is precisely because these people do not have an Absolute on which to base their arguments. They have no logic, no absolute, no moral, no consistency—so they must develop their own brand of sanctioned and sanitised “hate speech” with which to browbeat those who oppose them. Then, when this phase is effective, they will pass laws and then label those who oppose as criminals and a danger to society and then invite them to spend time behind bars.

Today we are told that everything is sweetness and light. Everything is equal. Two men together is as valid as a man and a woman. Yet, we ask, on what basis is this assertion made?[3] Indeed, even incestuous relationships are now being embraced and given their own alphabet soup so that they can be legitimised.[4] We are being handed fairy floss!

Herein is the hypocrisy. An honest citizen who has committed no crime – other than to insist on moral absolutes – becomes to these people the equivalent of a thief, paedophile, or murderer. If you think this is foolishness, then simply reverse engineer their arguments. If all are truly equal and morality does not exist, then there can be no wrong. If morality is simply what the Government of the day makes it to be, then we are all in danger for morality will change with each new law, with each passing year, and the turn of a new decade.

Think about this! You raise your child on the moral principles of the day. That child is a successful, law abiding citizen until they are in their mid-thirties when, due to a change in legislation, they now become a pariah. Society now punishes them for what society previously taught them.

  1. Absolute Morality – Loving and Hating.

The only safety net available to this or any society is to return to or embrace God’s absolute morality. God has spoken. Obedience alone will bring His blessing. Empirically, we know this to be true. Our nation is in turmoil; it is in its death throes. If we are honest, we will admit that we are further from God than we have ever been, yet our estate is worse than it has ever been.

Our only hope, therefore, is to reject Man’s egalitarianism and subjective morality and embrace God’s absolute morality. We must learn to love what God loves and Hate what God hates.

At this statement, some will be greatly perplexed. They will never have heard these types of words before. Sadly, this is a confirmation of how much the World has penetrated the Church and Her theology.

Our minister has been preaching through Corinthians and he noted that the Corinthian problem was that there was too much World in the Church. Conversely, it may be argued that there is too little Church in the World. Perceive it as you will, the point is that the Church no longer believes God and His revelation of Morality and Truth. Therefore, She shies away from taking a stand. The Church has become so enamoured with being popular and with winning souls that She has forgotten what Holiness and Righteousness are and in Whom they are to be found.

This was brought home to me clearly many years ago when I made a statement about God “hating” certain things. I was immediately rebuked and told that such concepts were erroneous. I shook my head, disbelieving what my ears were transferring to my brain. Sadly, decades later, I am hearing a growing chorus of dissenters who are simply being blasphemous because they are speaking lies concerning God.

It is time to evict the World from the Church and inject the Church into the World! This eviction must begin with us believing what God says in His word about His own Being and Character, and as a consequence, jettisoning all the Worldly fair floss that we have purchased.

This jettisoning process must begin with acceptance of the very simple fact: God hates! As a Christian, as a Man created in God’s image,  I must hate what God hates. If I do not hate what God hates then I am being treasonous. Strong words by modern standards, but they are, nonetheless, true words. Think about it. Are we not citizens in a Kingdom? Are we not bound to obey the great King? Yes, we are; on both counts! Thus, to love what the King hates is to bring evil and falsehood into the Kingdom.[5]

Now, let’s be clear. We are speaking of God and as such we are speaking of intrinsic Morality as God has created and revealed it. We are not talking Ford v Holden, Pizza with or without anchovies, or whether we should drive on the left- or right-hand side of the road. No, we are speaking of God’s Morality intrinsic to Man as a consequence of being made in God’s image and likeness.

What then does God hate? Well, the answer is that God hates anything that digresses from His express will, decree, and standard. If we think of the Ten Commandments as a summary of God’s Morality, then we see that any digression from these Laws would be a thing that God dislikes intently. Thus, idolatry, adultery, homosexuality, greed, robbery, false worship, murder, and so forth are all things that God hates. It is for this reason that I say there are too many blasphemers who today speak lies in the name of God.[6] There are too many Christians who simply do not believe what God says about Himself.

If you are in doubt in regard to the basic thesis that God hates, then please consider the following (As you do, think about the relationship of each item to the Summary of God’s Moral Law, the Ten Commandments.):

Proverbs 6:16-19 – “There are six things which the Lord hates, Yes, seven which are an abomination to Him: Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, A heart that devises wicked plans, Feet that run rapidly to evil, A false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers.

Isaiah 61:8 – “For I, the Lord, love justice, I hate robbery in the burnt offering;”

Jeremiah 44:4-5 – “Yet I sent you all My servants the prophets, again and again, saying, “Oh, do not do this abominable thing which I hate.” ‘But they did not listen or incline their ears to turn from their wickedness, so as not to burn sacrifices to other gods.

Amos 5:21 – “I hate, I reject your festivals, nor do I delight in your solemn assemblies.

Zechariah 8:16-17 – “These are the things which you should do: speak the truth to one another; judge with truth and judgment for peace in your gates. ‘Also let none of you devise evil in your heart against another, and do not love perjury; for all these are what I hate,’ declares the Lord.

Malachi 2:16 – “For I hate divorce,” says the Lord, the God of Israel, “and him who covers his garment with wrong,” says the Lord of hosts. “So take heed to your spirit, that you do not deal treacherously.

To this list we could add those texts that speak, like several here, about that which the Lord God Almighty declares to be an abomination. As one example, please consider Deuteronomy 12:31 – “You shall not behave thus toward the Lord your God, for every abominable act which the Lord hates they have done for their gods; for they even burn their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods.

As per usual, we are keenly aware that detractors will state that these texts are from the Old Testament and then justify this statement with some new spin on an old heresy. To these, we can only suggest that it time that they got their head around the Doctrine of God’s Immutability.

Anyway, for these, we will give one text which is very important. Here are Jesus’ words; the words of God’s eternal Son; words that Jesus, the resurrected Lord spoke to His Church concerning a group of wayward heretics: “Yet this you do have, that you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.[7]

Yes, Jesus hates. That is what the text says. Jesus commends His people for hating the deeds (works) of these heretics because Jesus also hated them. The commendation comes because at that very point these people were one with their Master.

This then gives us a clue as we move forward and look at what our attitude should be to those things which God hates. Indeed, this is not a clue or a hint; it is the reality of our relationship with God, through Christ Jesus in the power of the Holy Spirit – we must be one with our God!

The Psalmists have this to say:

26:5 – “I hate the assembly of evildoers, and I will not sit with the wicked.

31:6 – “I hate those who regard vain idols; But I trust in the Lord.

97:10 – “Hate evil, you who love the Lord, Who preserves the souls of His godly ones; He delivers them from the hand of the wicked.

139:21-22 – “Do I not hate those who hate Thee, O Lord? And do I not loathe those who rise up against Thee? I hate them with the utmost hatred; they have become my enemies.

119: 104, 113, 128, 163 – “From Thy precepts I get understanding; Therefore I hate every false way; I hate those who are double-minded, But I love Thy law; Therefore I esteem right all Thy precepts concerning everything, I hate every false way; I hate and despise falsehood, But I love Thy law.[8]

Next, a simple question: The fear of the Lord is …? How did you answer this? Did you say “knowledge” or maybe “wisdom”? Not incorrect, but did you realise that the same pen also wrote: “The fear of the Lord is to hate evil; Pride and arrogance and the evil way, and the perverted mouth, I hate”?[9]

Again, for the New Testamenty Christians we have this selection:

1 Thessalonians 5:21-22 – “But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good; abstain from every form of evil.”[10] (NIV: Test everything. Hold on to the good.  Avoid every kind of evil.)

Jude 22-23 – “And have mercy on some, who are doubting; save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh.

Romans 12:9 – “Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good.

Lastly, let us conclude with two statements from Jesus:

Luke 14:26 – “If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.

Luke 16:13 – “No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one, and love the other, or else he will hold to one, and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.

What these statements teach us is that God in Trinity must have the priority in our lives. There is no human relationship, nor is there wealth, life, philosophy, ideology, policy, or organisation that can make a claim on us that is greater than that which God makes. If we are God’s servants in and through Jesus Christ, then we must serve as Jesus didMy food is to do the will of Him Who sent Me and to accomplish His work!

It means that we can only love that which God loves and that we must hate and abominate that which God loathes. We cannot claim to be God’s faithful servants and then disown those things which are the essence of His nature. We cannot befriend that which God hates nor can we accept that which God has declared unacceptable.

Therefore, I am crawling out from under my rock and the hate speech I wish to say is this: Thus says the Lord, “Homosexuality is an abomination in My eyes”. As His servant, I say, “Homosexuality, along with murder, rape, thievery, and the like, is an affront to His holiness. If we as a nation continue to pander to the rebellious homosexual minority, in particular, and if we continue to fail in providing true justice, then we will ask for God’s wrath to be delivered to us both in time and space and in eternity. Our nation will not prosper. We will continue to face dangers from without and within. Our freedom will become slavery. Our joy will be turned to sorrow. We will inflict great suffering on the generations to be born.

Mr. Turnbull, Mr. Shorten, and all those who support the homosexual movement’s radical rebellion, know that you are playing with fire by angering Almighty God. Know that all your statements are falsehood. Know that you speak lies and impugn the integrity of God Almighty. Know that you betray your office as Ministers of God. Know that He will not acquit the guilty. Know that you are bringing destruction to this people. Know that you will give an account before His judge, Jesus Christ. Know that unless you repent, there will be no account that you can give of yourself that will be acceptable. Know that ideas and actions have consequences and your continued rebellion will bring ruination to this people in time and in eternity!

I adjure you by the mercies of God, forsake your folly; Kiss the Son lest you perish in your way; Flee from the coming wrath; Repent; Hate evil; Do what is Good; Live! Exalt this nation rather than cover it in shame and disgrace! In short, fulfill the great Commandment:Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind!””


[1] “Cotton Candy”, for our North American brethren.

[2] Taken from Saltshakers News Update, September 9, 2016.

[3] The nonsense of the current position being thrust upon society is seen in the growing alphabet soup. Once, homosexuals were labelled as “queer”. This was not acceptable to the moderns so it was changed to LGBT. Now this is not adequate. Apparently the fraternity of the sinful have embraced their former appellation, so a “Q” was added. Now this is not adequate, so the soup has been extended yet again to LGBTQIA, to included “intersex” and “asexual”. What next? All we will add is, please note that there is no “H” for heterosexual. Apparently it is okay to accept every sexual orientation except the one created and commanded by God!

[4] This is now referred to as GSA – Genetic Sexual Attraction. The sickening aspect is that I had bookmarked one account of a Father and daughter. This story had disappeared, but I easily found two new ones on the same site – Vomit bags on standby!!!

[5] Isaiah 5:20 – “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” Proverbs 17:15 – “He who justifies the wicked, and he who condemns the righteous, both of them alike are an abomination to the Lord.

[6] I refer you to this site for the picture, not necessarily for the article content.

[7] Revelation 2:6.

[8] Note that in these particular Psalms the contrast is always between God’s revealed standard – Law, Precept – and what the Psalmist sees in men.

[9] Proverbs 8:13.

[10] We would do well to remember that the “form” of evil begins with the evil thought. The evil thought produces evil actions. Thus, we must always be on guard against believing anything which contradicts God’s word for this is the evil root which will produce the evil fruit.

The Gospel: What is it?

The Gospel! Only two words. These are words known by most men, whether from within or without the Church. These are words used by most Christians on a regular basis. Those attending worship will hear them often. Yet, “What is the Gospel?

This topic needs to be urgently addressed for whilst the term “The Gospel” is an ever present term, it is also a regularly undefined term. Some say that The Gospel is “good news”. What is it, then, that makes The Gospel good news? When asked about the nature of The Gospel we will be told that it is salvation. Asked where we will find The Gospel, most will reply, “In the New Testament?” Asked as to the ownership of The Gospel, we will be told that it is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Macquarie Dictionary, as an example, defines gospel as: “(often capital) the body of doctrine taught by Christ and the apostles; Christian revelation.”

How right are these answers? What do you think? Does any more need to be said or are these definitions adequate?

Our concern at this point has to do with the limited nature of these definitions and the fact that these popular definitions fall in line with the modern truncated view of Scripture and therefore of God’s work. For example, I recently had a conversation with a young man. In the context of being offered advice, he told me that the opinions of all were held up to the light of “The Gospel.” Admittedly, I should be ecstatic, should I not? Is this not an excellent answer? Well, the answer to that question depends on the answer to this question, “What did he mean by Gospel?

I fear, for good reason, that his answer was akin to those above. What was meant by The Gospel was a particularly narrow, non historical, New Testamenty, Johnny-come-lately concept that highlights grace and peace and which makes no demands on sinner or saint. It is a concept the divides Scripture, brings a sharp focus to Jesus, His words and life, which thereby discounts or diminishes other writers, and generally excuses sin because grace has arrived.

Okay. Grab a nice coffee. Sit yourself back down. Wait for the tremors to cease. Dry your eyes. When you are composed, we will continue.

The summary definition of The Gospel given may not be completely accurate in all cases. Nonetheless, elements of it, to a greater or lesser extent, will be found in the ordinary definition of most Christians – especially those under the age of thirty. Importantly, it must be apprehended that the summary definition or those answers given earlier are not The Gospel. If you believe these statements to be The Gospel, then you are in error. Remember, not everything called “Gospel” is The Gospel: “even though we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed.”[1]

In contradistinction to these modern concepts, The Gospel, Biblically defined, must be seen as the totality of God’s revelation and promise as it comes to fulfilment in the Messiah, Jesus Christ. In this sense, The Gospel is Old and New Testament – the whole of Scripture; it is salvation and wrath; it is grace and law; it is vindication and condemnation; it is of Jesus Christ in fulfilment, of God in inception, of  prophet in promise, of the Apostles in proclamation, of the Holy Spirit in power; it is given in time and it is eternal; it speaks of a King and of a Servant; it is Majesty and it is humility; it is Command and it is Promise; it is a free gift yet it requires payment; it is of the earth and it is heavenly; it is ultimate freedom and it is obligation; it is good news to those who believe and truth tragically realised to those who disbelieve; it is extreme joy and it is the gnashing of teeth; it is life and it is death.

Alright! Do we need another coffee break?

These truths may be hard to bear, but bear them we must. When this definition is given, it will be at once obvious that it stands in contradistinction to those outlined above. Of all the definitions above, the Macquarie dictionary comes the closest to the truth because it at least acknowledges a “body of doctrine” and speaks of “Christian revelation”.

If you have believed the truncated view of The Gospel, for whatever reason, it is time to put that in the past. Now is the time to move forward into greater light and understanding that we may become better and more faithful servants of Jesus Christ.

As always, you are not to believe the opinion of man, so let us look to the Scriptures to show that the definition given is that which the Bible teaches.

  1. Whose Gospel:

Given the modern, truncated view of The Gospel, we often hear that The Gospel is ‘the gospel of Jesus Christ’. This is true enough; however, we must ask why it is defined as the Gospel of Christ. The answer is that Jesus Christ forms the centrepiece and fulfilment of God’s promise. Thus, when The Gospel is defined as belonging to Jesus Christ, the defining aspect of The Gospel, in this instance, is to be found in Jesus Christ as the focus and fulfilment of God’s promise.

However, we must grasp that this is but one aspect of The Gospel’s nature. It is vitally important for our understanding that we perceive the nature of The Gospel as variously ascribed to different persons and states. Thus, it is imperative that when we see The Gospel ascribed to Jesus that we do not forget that this is but one aspect, one vantage point, if you will, and begin to think that Jesus came to give us something new, different, or contrary to God’s revelation and promise. No, The Gospel is multifaceted and it depends on what is in view as to the correct appellation used.

The truth of this point is born out for us by the fact that The Gospel is attributed to various persons, institutions, and states. It is the Gospel of the Kingdom.[2] It is the Gospel of salvation.[3] It is the Gospel of peace.[4] It is the Gospel of God.[5] It is the Gospel of His Son.[6] It is the Gospel of the Grace of God.[7] So much so is this the case that Paul can legitimately refer to The Gospel as “my Gospel”.[8] Paul proclaimed what he had been given—so indentifying with the promises, the fulfilment, and his commissioning, that he could, without compromise, speak of The Gospel as his Gospel.

The Gospel belongs to any who own it, Christ Jesus, God, Paul, and yes, you!

  1. The Beginning of the Gospel:

This is one of the most important aspects of this discussion. We have inferred that many of the moderns see The Gospel as something new that arrived with Jesus. Thus, we previously referred to the “New Testementy” aspects adored by the moderns. In this view, Jesus comes with The Gospel, not as its goal and fulfilment, but, in essence, to introduce new doctrines and the like. Yet, this is false. The truth is that The Gospel predates Jesus by millennia. The truth is that The Gospel, as with Jesus Himself, was promised to us by God.

Paul says that his Gospel is the Gospel of God, which “He promised beforehand through His prophets in the holy Scriptures.[9] If, then, The Gospel was promised in the Scriptures by the prophets, it makes perfect sense that The Gospel, even if in embryonic form, predated Jesus and His incarnation. Thus, it is not new.

Equally, if The Gospel is promised by the prophets, its shape and content must have already been known to some extent. In fact, is this not exactly why and how we know that Jesus is the Messiah? Is it not true that Jesus could identify Himself as the Messiah because He could show exactly how the promises were realised in His person and work? Thus, the content, aim, and purpose of The Gospel are not new.

Then we have to consider the words of Paul when he states that, “… the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “All the nations shall be blessed in you.[10] Hmmm! Very difficult to see The Gospel as “new” and bringing “new content” when The Gospel was both preached to Abraham and defined by promise for Abraham.[11]

Thus, we must correctly conceive of the complete Scriptures giving to us a complete Gospel in type and antitype or in promise and fulfilment. Nothing more. Nothing less.

  1. Is the Gospel “good news” only:

This is one of those questions that nobody likes to answer because the answer requires stating truths that Man does not like to hear. Even Christians who say that they believe the Bible are reluctant to take Scripture on face value when it comes to answering this question. However, Scripture is our only foundation and there we must stand.

The Gospel, etymologically speaking, can be and is translated as “good news”. Hence, to speak of The Gospel as good news is not wrong, but it is one-sided. It is one-sided because there are two types of people on this earth and there are two destinies. For those who are saved The Gospel is most definitely good news. Indeed, it is most excellent news. It is the news that God saves hopeless sinners. It is the good news that God pays the debt we owed. It is the good news that Jesus the Just died for the unjust. It is, for God’s people, wonderful news. For the rest, however, the news can only be considered ‘good’ from the perspective that God’s justice will be holy, perfect, and delivered as per His promise.

For many, the fact that God judges sin and sinners is not viewed as part of The Gospel. Indeed, for many moderns, God’s wrath and judgement are considered to be contrary to The Gospel. Hence, these aspects are dropped from preaching and worship services the world over. After all, do we not hear, constantly, the false refrain that ‘God loves the sinner but hates the sin’? Yet, the truth of the matter is that God never divorces sin from sinner. The sinning one will perish; the sinning one will be judged; the sinning one must pay the penalty for their sin. Hell will be full of unrepentant sinners paying for their sins.

Unpalatable as this may be to some, the simple and basic reality is that this judgement of sinners is as much a part of The Gospel as is the wonder of salvation. Indeed, it is a Biblical fact that salvation is always accompanied by judgement.[12]

Consider these Scriptures:

From the standpoint of the gospel they are enemies for your sake, but from the standpoint of God’s choice they are beloved for the sake of the fathers.[13]

And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing.[14]

…on the day when, according to my gospel, God will judge the secrets of men through Christ Jesus.[15]

Each text informs us that The Gospel holds a message of condemnation as much as it does a message of salvation. Men are blinded to the truth. Some were cut off so that others may be engrafted. The Gospel contains the fact that God will judge men through Jesus Christ.

The truly sad reality is that Scripture is deliberately skewed at this point because men do not like this aspect of The Gospel. Tragically, we have become those who preach a different Gospel because we refuse to preach and teach The Whole Gospel. This fact is demonstrated most clearly by our refusal to abide by and proclaim the totality of God’s revelation as it is found in Scripture. The best example would be that of John 3:16-17, which says, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him.” All good so far! However, the searching question is, “Why do we not readily quote verses eighteen through twenty?” These verse state: “He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the light is come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their deeds were evil.  For everyone who does evil hates the light, and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.

  1. Conclusion.

The Gospel! Only two words. Nonetheless, the most important words the world has ever received. These words convey the truth and gamut of salvation history. These words contain the fullest expression of God’s revelation. These words span the millennia of Scripture. These words contain a movement from embryo to adulthood; simplicity to complexity; promise to fulfilment. These words are code for the complete revelation of God in Jesus Christ His Son. This is The Gospel. This is The only Gospel.

Brethren, why do we have a penchant for having a different gospel? Why does the Church Growth Movement insist on dropping doctrines from The Gospel? Why do many of us feel more comfortable with this alternative gospel? Why do we rob The Gospel of power and God of His glory by adopting this different gospel? Why do we insist on the cut-down, race version, which turns The Gospel into a gospel; a version devoid of power and the Holy Spirit? Why do we insist on the diet-lite version, rather than be satisfied with the full and complete meal of the Word that is satiating?

Brethren, if we would see God work in might and in power in these dark days then we must return to the true proclamation of the whole counsel of God, which alone is The Gospel. If we would see sinners saved, wickedness dispelled, Jesus Christ exalted, the Church united, the nations obey Jesus, righteousness as a standard, and so forth, then we must believe and proclaim The Gospel!


[1] Galatians 1:8. Emphasis added.

[2] Matthew 4:23.

[3] Ephesians 1:13.

[4] Ephesians 6:15.

[5] Romans 1:1.

[6] Romans 1:9.

[7] Acts 20:24.

[8] 2 Timothy 2:8.

[9] Romans 1:2.

[10] Galatians 3:8.

[11] We might also point out that Genesis 3:15 is also referred to as the protoevangelium or the ‘first gospel’. Whilst the term “gospel” does not occur in the text, theologians throughout history have traced back through the promises of God and arrived at this point – God’s initial promise to save through judgement.

[12] We see this fact in many places in Scripture. In footnote eleven, we spoke of the protoevangelium found in Genesis 3:15. There we find this juxtaposition. God declares war on Satan and his seed and declares that the seed of the woman will be attacked and bruised, but that this Seed will be the one Who deals the death blow. In essence, salvation (Jesus being bruised on the cross) is accompanied by Jesus ultimate destruction of Satan and his minions. See also 1Peter 4:17-18; Romans 9:27-30. Paul’s words in Romans may seem difficult, but the essential point is that God judged Israel for sin leaving a remnant that was both life and hope. In the midst of just Judgement, Yahweh left a remnant by which Messiah would arrive and purchase for God with His blood “men from every tribe, tongue, people, and nation.”

[13] Romans 11:28. Paul’s argument is that Israel was partially hardened and judged in order that wild shoots may be grafted in to where the natural branches had been broken off. Judgement for Israel meant salvation for the gentiles.

[14] 2 Corinthians 4:3.

[15] Romans 2:16. This text is very understandable. Paul’s Gospel, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, contains the undeniable truth that God will judge men through Jesus Christ. Thus, judgement and wrath are a part of The Gospel. See also Acts 10:42.

The Active Destruction of the Family

Australia is a country at war. It is divided. It is torn. It is unsettled. It is restless. It is confused. It is lost. It gropes in the darkness.

Worse than this, Australia is a nation lead by a murder[1] of political buffoons who have little or no clue on how to repair, restore, and improve this nation.

Worst of all, this murder of political buffoons are so enamoured with their own political theories and the rightness of their rebellion against God that they will not turn from their evil and destructive ways despite the evidence that they are killing their own so as to feed upon their flesh.

Truly a gruesome and disgusting picture, but one which is very true and it is high time we realised this fact.

The current topic of evil is homosexual union. Debates rage over the pros and cons of this abominable practice. We are held to ransom by an extreme, errant, and malevolent minority. Our politicians have voted. Then they wanted a popular vote of the people. Now, they want to vote again themselves; not for righteousness sake, but for bragging rights.

Yet, whilst this topic makes headlines every day, the populace does not seem to be concerned about other “issues” that are being sanctioned and implemented  on a daily basis that are as equally destructive.

  1. The Long War against God!

Whilst we fight and oppose any push for homosexual union, the real tragedy, at least to me, is that most Christians in this country do not even understand how we arrived at this point. I have heard genuine, Christ loving, Bible believing brothers speak about the speed with which this degradation came upon us, as though it has come as a bolt from the blue. Of recent, I have heard several prayers thanking God for the freedoms we have in this country, especially in regard to worship and prayer meetings.

Now I plead before God that I offend neither Him nor the brethren when comments and criticisms like these are made, but the truth is that these comments must be made. The Christian populace must wake up. The Church must be awakened. The Church must face the harsh reality of what lies before Her, in Her very gaze, or She will face even darker days.

The simple reality is that homosexual union has been on the cards for decades. It is not new, nor did it arrive quickly. Secondly, the Church is persecuted daily. Christians are persecuted daily. Our freedoms, given to us by God, are being eroded almost exponentially. Our worship is impinged upon. How long will it be before our Bible studies and prayer meetings become Secularist cannon fodder? Learn we must that this is not the beginning of a process, but the culmination of a process aimed at the destruction of God’s order.

This process began, at least officially, in 1975 when this country had “no fault divorce” foist upon it. This may seem innocuous to many, but it is not. This proclamation is the smoking gun of homosexual union, the destruction of the family, and the erosion of our freedoms.

To comprehend the implications of no fault divorce, we must understand, a) the very nature of divorce; and b) every institution and concept that is inextricably linked to or impacted by the nature of divorce.

First of all, as is obvious, divorce is linked to marriage. As marriage is:

  1. established by God;
  2. created by covenant;
  3. given for a stated purpose;
  4. regulated by Law; and
  5. protected by Law,

we must apprehend that marriage is, therefore, first and foremost, moral. As marriage is a moral institution, not a cultural convenience or evolutionary wonder, it stands to reason that everything that stems from or impacts upon marriage is also to be considered a moral entity or as having moral qualities.

When God established marriage, one purpose given to it was procreation. Hence, marriage is inextricably linked to family. To achieve family, Man had to be made in such a way that he could procreate – for that reason God made Man male and female. God also instituted roles within marriage. Thus, marriage, procreation, and family become moral entities and are to be governed, protected, and assessed only according to the moral standards that God instituted.

When it comes to forming marriages, this morality also governed who performed marriages and the standards to which any ceremony had to adhere. We may often wonder where some aspects of a wedding ceremony may come from, but they are not hard to figure out when Scripture is studied. For example, the words, “We are gathered here in the sight of God”, simply state the most obvious truth concerning marriage – it is a covenant instituted by God, for His glory, and it applies to all men. Hence, the omnipresent God can never be ignored when it comes to marriage.

Of equal importance is the “in sight of these witnesses”, for in God’s law everything had to be established by the word of two or three witnesses.[2] So intrinsic to Man is this law that Paul invoked it in the New Testament in regard to charges against an Elder.[3] Thus, the affirmation of a true marriage had to be in accord with God’s law. It had to be witnessed so that should any breach occur there was true testament that a valid marriage had been instituted and violated.

What of a father walking a bride down the aisle and answering the call of, “Who gives this woman to this man?” Is this just a quaint happening? Not on your Nellie! Hang on! This is going to get rough!!! This process signifies the transfer of the God-given headship from the father to the husband. It is a sign that the father approves the marriage and deems that the husband-to-be is of sufficiently fit character to take on and execute the role of covenant head. It is following God’s design for the protection and nurture of families in generational covenant.

Much more could be said, but these points alone lead us toward the conclusion that marriage is moral, ecclesiastical, and familial. Above all, these points teach that marriage is not, nor can it ever be, Secular! This means that a Government may oversee marriage as a legitimate part of its Office, but it can never fiddle with the parameters of marriage, for they have been established by God. The Government’s job, according to Romans 13, is to bear the sword and vigorously pursue the evildoer, in this case the wife-basher, adulterer, adulteress, and the immoral.

This leaves only one conclusion: the dissolving of any marriage can only take place on moral grounds. In other words, divorce is only legitimate when there is a proven moral failure – a transgression of God’s law – on the part of one of those in the marriage covenant. Is this not exactly what Jesus said? Did not Jesus say that, “whoever divorces his wife, except for immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery?”[4]

Please note Jesus’ words carefully. These words are unpopular today, but we need to hear them and heed them. Jesus teaches that one moral failure actually begets another. Divorce, far from solving problems, actually multiplies problems. Divorce, conceived of falsely, begets social ills, bringing and spreading God’s judgement.

No fault divorce. A Government takes to itself power and authority it cannot have. A Government wages war on God and His standard. If marriage is moral, then divorce procedures must be moral. 1975. No fault divorce. A piece of legislation is enacted. God and His morality are wiped quietly from the statute books and the Church does not raise a whimper. In this wretched piece of legislation, we witnessed the loosing of morality from divorce proceedings. Concomitantly, there was a silent declaration that marriage was no longer a moral entity, but was now just a cultural institution. Likewise, the family was knocked from its pedestal of sanctity. It was no longer special, no longer defined and protected by God’s design and law. All were now just cultural constructs to be defined by Man.

Consequently, from this time, we began to see a reshaping of all these institutions. Marriage became an optional extra. Try before you buy; multiple relationships etc., etc, became more and more acceptable. Morality waned. God’s judgement waxed. Families disintegrated and the social fabric of our nation was rent asunder. The central building block of our society, the family, has been remoulded after fallen Man’s design until we reach the point where same sex union is considered to be the acme of marriage.

Those who cannot procreate and have natural families are put on the pedestal once occupied by God’s family. Those who cannot ever be a family now turn to other morally bankrupt schemes in order to have children. Those who despise marriage are allowed to breed and clog up society with ill disciplined children. They are allowed to beat, maim, and deprive their children of nurture, justice, and the God-given pleasantries of family. Then we have those who simply choose to have children to multiple fathers. Marriage never enters their mind.

Morality wanes. God’s judgement waxes.

All the while, we heterosexual, God-moulded families, must now enjoy the privilege of not only being mocked as an anachronism, we must also enjoy the right to pay for these debauched ones to have their illegitimate children and their tax-payer-funded sex changes, their day in court when their “unions” disintegrate,[5] the wonder of welfare payments for the unmarried to have children and to raise them as social misfits. We have the privilege to sit by and watch the atrocities committed by “partners” against their “de factos” or their “de factos’ children” and then suffer the ignominy of having God-moulded families thrown into the same basket as these.

Morality wanes. God’s holy and righteous judgement waxes!

  1. The Destruction Continues!

The simple reality is that all levels of government are presently at war with God-moulded families. They profess support for families, but in this they do not conceive of God-moulded families, only those moulded after the minds of fallen men.

My story. I recently took my fifteen year old daughter to a specialist’s appointment. At the end of the consult, we paid our dues and the receptionist stated that the Medicare rebate would be processed automatically. Several weeks later, no money had been received. A little while later, a letter was received, stating that Medicare owed us money, but that we needed to provide details.

Being a cooperative lad, I logged on to make sure everything was up to speed – I suspected it should be as I had only just changed all our accounts. Anyway, I could not find a place to update my daughter even though she was clearly listed on the page. So, I logged out. Knowing the communistic, feminising tendencies of our governments, I logged in as my wife. Same issue. Oh dear! That sense of dread swept across my body. I now had to ring a government department!

Anyway, the call was answered sooner than expected and I asked my question. Brad was on the other end and he explained that my daughter now had to have her own log-in details on her own access or, at the very least, he had to speak to her.

Have your heard of the “Berserkers”? Well, one came to visit! I asked Brad why the government was bent on the destruction of the family. Brad spun his rhetoric and went on to note that when a child turns fourteen, they are to have their own log-in, etc. He explained that she could use my bank details for the Medicare payment, but that she needed to establish an account with the details etc. I pushed, “Why?” Then Brad spilled the proverbial “beans” – it was so that she could have a medical consult or procedure without our knowledge! So, I once more asked Brad why the government was waging war on the legitimate families of this nation and pushing them to destruction.

Can you see the problem? Parents are now nothing, but a breeding pair. Once the child is born, the parents are being denied any rights. God’s design is turned on its head. The child, at fourteen, must now give the father permission to collect from the government the money to which he is entitled. The child is now the one with the power and authority and it is the parents, the father in particular, that must now ask if he can have the car keys!

Think this through. This child cannot drink, marry, or vote until she is eighteen. She cannot, depending on the State she is in, give legal consent to sexual activity until she is 16 or 17 years old. Yet, she can go behind her parents back with Government consent and procure a range of medical services, e.g., an abortion.

As I pondered this, fumed may come a little closer, it was my intention to include in the article the example of a British school that was caught handing out the Pill to girls without parental consent. This happened a few years ago and I was wondering where I might find the reference.

No need! Our very own atheistic, God-hating Premier, Daniel Andrews, came forward with a better and more relevant case. Doctors working in government schools will be able to prescribe the contraceptive Pill to girls as young as twelve.[6] The Herald Sun article goes on to say that “the State Government has not decided if parents will have to give consent”, but immediately goes on to quote Mr. Andrews as saying that students can already access certain medical clinics. The article also quotes the AMA state president as saying that children “can be given medical care if they can demonstrate they understand what is happening.”

Much could be said, but here is the State-sponsored destruction of the family highlighted for all to see. Reading between the lines, we must conclude that those sending their children to government schools are incapable of providing proper medical care for their children. Then there is the obvious question, “Why the Pill?” If these poor waifs are uncared for, should we not start with the much more common ailments? What of the boys? Hey, common, we live in the age of sexual equality, what are the twelve year old boys getting? Probably just a lecture that will feminise them that bit more. This leads me to ask the really important question, “If the safe-schools programme is run, our boys bashed into submission until the can recite feminist dogma in their sleep, then why will the girls need the Pill?” At this point our boys will be turned into quivering wrecks, trained to be afraid of women and find sexual fulfilment only amongst their own gender!

Facetiousness aside, how long will this be restricted to government schools? Already we see that the State forces non-government schools to teach or push certain of its corrupt ideas. We see that the Governments of this nation constantly over step the mark and abuse their power. So, legitimately, we ask, how long …? How long until the list of pills grows? How long until the services are compulsory – just like State education, free, compulsory, and Secular? How long until their reach is extended? How long …?

Seriously, brethren, we need to wake up and act. Those stories, those horror stories, that once were so because they were rare, are no longer so because they are common and we are desensitised.

Why were homeschoolers made to register their children? Why? The story of the girl who ran away from home at fourteen only to find she did not qualify for welfare and returned home repentant—until her fifteenth birthday when she did qualify. How many of our homeless youth are truly homeless? How many are State sponsored runaways? How many are exploited and have their lives ruined because they were encouraged by the State to run away from home simply because dad had a few rules, which they did not like. How many abortions, murders, are carried out because these children are supplied with the Pill, but, because of their immaturity, they use them incorrectly and end up pregnant?


The Governments of this nation have declared war on marriage and the family and they have done so by stripping these institutions of God’s design and God’s morality. Pretending to be god’s, these fools now play with society and try to craft it after their own design, but all they do is bring death and destruction to us.

Have you noticed how they point fingers? 1975. No Fault divorce; the beginning of the end for marriage and family. The beginning of the end for marriage and family as God designed it. Forty years of war against God’s family. Yet, families are not better. Families are not multiplying. Families are no longer healthy places in which to raise children. Families are in chaos. Do the politicians blame themselves? Do the politicians do an about face and admit they were wrong? No, they do not. Why? Simple. They would rather live in the chaos and continue their long war against God, His design, and His morality than repent, bow the knee, and confess that God was right all along.

Brethren, let us keep our eye on the ball. Let us, as Christ commands, Stay alert! Let us be aware of the “thin end of the wedge.” Let us apply our minds, renewed in Christ and by the Holy Spirit, so that we may see the outcome of any proposal. Remember, all laws, ideas, concepts, and proposals can only have one of two outcomes – life or death. As Proverbs says, “There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.[7] Our Governments believe that they are on the right path, but God’s word and the evidence all around us only show death and carnage. The lessons for us, as God’s people, are that we must listen to God’s word;  believe that God’s word is our only rule for life and faith; and fight to see God’s order implemented, honoured, and obeyed.


[1] Yes, usually a collective applied to crows. However, when trying to think of a collective name for those running our country, somehow it just seemed right to name them after a hated, black bird that is a nuisance to productivity and which feeds on the dead flesh of others.

[2] Deuteronomy 19:15.

[3] 1 Timothy 5:19.

[4] Matthew 19.9.

[5] I wrote recently of a conversation in which a lady argued that same sex marriage should be allowed because heterosexuals divorce and often cause hurt to children. Hmmm! What then of those homosexual relationships that fail and which have children involved? One hit the headlines just the other day. Same sex marriage will not stop the mess, it will only increase it!

[6] Herald Sun. Friday, September 2, 2016. Front page.

[7] Proverbs 16:25.