Sunday, April 24, 2005

Back to Normal with the New Pope???

For the last few weeks, the newspapers, television networks (well, I think so on this one, since I don't have one and don't watch things each day), radio broadcasts, and internet sources have all been intrigued with first the death of the pope, and now second with the selection of the Catholic church's new leader, the new pope. This has impacted the entire world, and much of the Christian world also. Many protestant church leaders have heaped praise upon Pope John Paul... I wonder if they remember their church denominations own heritage about how they came out of the false catholic church during the days of the Reformation? Martin Luther didn't have much words of praise for the pope during his days. It looks to me like we are getting ready to come back into that one world-wide church as foretold in the Bible???

I found this posted on the Internet, and I found it to be filled with much truth. Keep in mind this was sent to several newspapers by a local church pastor, but I doubt it ever got published.

Here it is for you to read..... see if you think he is a pastor of hate, or simply a pastor proclaiming the truth based on God's word???

I sent this letter to the editor to our local paper and to a number of large state papers. The brevity of the letter is due to a limit on the length of letters printed in our local paper. It is important for Christians, especially pastors, to speak up during this time when the Roman Catholic Church is being presented far and wide as Christ's true Church, thanks to the death of the pope and the picking of his successor.

Pastor Ralph Ovadal

As a minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ and His Church, I feel compelled to comment on the recent death of Pope John Paul II and the selection of his successor. Although it is not uncommon for media personalities to repeat the Romanist mantra that the Catholic pope is the head of Christ's Church, nothing could be further from the truth. Jesus Christ is the only head of His Church. The pope is the head of a church/state behemoth which has little in common with Christ's true Church. Roman Catholic dogma concerning the pope, Mary, the mass, purgatory, indulgences, apparitions, prayers to the dead, and so much more are all grossly unbiblical. The Roman Catholic gospel is a Christ-dishonoring gospel of human works, not God's grace. The pope is not anyone's "Holy Father," and he is not the "vicar of Christ." The Scriptures are clear that the first title is reserved to God alone and the second belongs to the Holy Spirit. Historically, the great Protestant preachers always considered the papacy to be the "antichrist" warned of in the Scriptures. I believe that position to be the correct one. There are many wonderful Catholic people, and I fully support their right to exercise their religious convictions. At the same time, it grieves my heart to think of the billions of people worldwide who have recently been seduced into believing that the Roman Catholic Church is the Church of Jesus Christ when it most definitely is not.

Pastor Ralph Ovadal, Pilgrims Covenant Church

Saturday, April 16, 2005

How Much I Could Have Done

· Before the judgment seat of Christ my service will be judged not by how much I have done but by how much I could have done.
· In God's sight my giving is measured not by how much I have given but by how much I could have given and how much I had left after I made my gift.
· The needs of the world and my total ability to minister to those needs decide the worth of my service.

Not by its size is my gift judged, but by how much of me there is in it.

· No man gives at all until he has given all.
· No man gives anything acceptable to God until he has first given himself in love and sacrifice...

From A.W. Tozer’s: That Incredible Christian, p. 105

Holiness Quotation from J.C. Ryle

“No one ever said at the end of his days, I have read my Bible too much; I have prayed too much; I have been too careful with my soul”

“Holiness is the habit of being of one mind with God, according as we find His mind described in Scripture. It is the habit of agreeing in God’s judgment, hating what He hates, loving what He loves, and measuring everything in this world by the standard of His Word. He who most entirely agrees with God, that one is the most holy man.”
— J.C. Ryle
Holiness has been forgotten by many of today's Christians.... they have become much too wrapped up into the attractions of the world or being "busy for the Lord," having no time to read and study and meditate on God's Word, allowing Him to speak about the things that are holy to Him, and important for a Christian to radiate from his life to a lost and dying world around him. We are to stand out from the world around us.... however, most of the time, we blend right in.... with no difference at all in our daily activities or our conversation.
My desire today is to reflect the mind of God in my thoughts, words, and actions.... do you have that same desire, or is holiness a thing of the past?

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Five Reasons You May Not Like This Church

My family and I are members of Sullins Branch Baptist Church in Spruce Pine, NC located in the mountains of western North Carolina. Our pastor loves God with all his strength, but he also loves the souls of all people, young and old, and each time he steps into the pulpit, he preaches the truth of God's word and presents the gospel. We welcome each and every visitor to our services. Our congregation lovingly accepts each visitor just as they are, but we hope that they leave different from when they came. The preaching of God's word will effect all people; Christians draw closer to the Lord, Christians backslide against the clear instruction of His commands, sinners reject the gospel because they want to continue in their sin, and sinners being drawn by the Holy Spirit and accepting the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal saviour. Some people come back to worship with us; but, unfortunately, some people never return to our services. I saw this outline in the Flaming Torch newspaper (Volume 45 Number 1) written by Pastor Charles Perkins, and I immediately thought of our church. Could the same be said for the church which you attend??? Get out your Bible and study to see if your church fits this mold.


1. You may be lost!
a. Lost people hate light: John 3:18-20 "men loved darkness rather than light"
b. Lost people hate the truth: John 18:37-38 "What is truth?" John 17:17 "thy word is truth"
c. Lost people hate preaching: I Cor. 1:18-21 "For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness;"
2. You may be carnal!
I Cor. 3:1-6 "For ye are yet carnal"
Rom. 8:6-7 "For to be carnally minded is death"
3. You may be worldly!
Matt. 13:22 "he becometh unfruitful"
I John 2:15 "Love not the world"
II Cor. 4:35 "the god of this world has blinded"
Hebr. 11:24-27 "refused... faith he forsook Egypt"
4. You may be ignorant!
(Many people today are going to churches that never teach them Bible doctrine, and many never take the time to read and study God's word for themselves.)
a. About salvation - Rom. 10:1-4 "for they being ignorant of God's righteousness,"
b. About the Rock - I Cor. 10:1-4 "and that Rock was Christ."
c. About spiritual gifts - I Cor 12 "I would not have you ignorant"
d. About eternal security - John 10:27-30 "no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand." I Pet. 1:5 "kept by the power of God"
e. About the second coming of Christ - I Thes. 4:13-18 "I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep,"
5. You may not like the stand we take!
a. About the Bible - Pslm. 12:6-7 "the words of the LORD are pure words:"
b. About the old paths - Jer. 6:16 "ask for the old paths,"
c. About music - Eph. 5:18-19 "psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,"
d. About soul winning - Pslm. 126:5-6 "he that goeth forth and weepeth" Matt. 9:37-38 "that he will send forth labourers into his harvest."
e. About faithfulness - Prov. 20:6 "but a faithful man who can find?" I Cor. 4:2 "that a man be found faithful." Rev. 2:10-11 "faithful unto death,"

Sunday, April 03, 2005

The Church: Different From the World

Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,” — 2 Corinthians 6:17
The church's mightiest influence is felt when she is different from the world in which she lives. Her power lies in her being different, rises with the degree in which she differs and sinks as the difference diminishes.

This is so fully and clearly taught in the Scriptures and so well illustrated in Church history that it is hard to see how we can miss it. But miss it we do, for we hear constantly that the Church must try to be as much like the world as possible, excepting, of course, where the world is too, too sinful...

Let us plant ourselves on the hill of Zion and invite the world to come over to us, but never under any circumstances will we go over to them. The cross is the symbol of Christianity, and the cross speaks of death and separation, never of compromise. No one ever compromised with a cross. The cross separated between the dead and the living. The timid and the fearful will cry "Extreme!" and they will be right. The cross is the essence of all that is extreme and final. The message of Christ is a call across a gulf from death to life, from sin to righteousness and from Satan to God.

From A.W. Tozer’s: The Set of the Sail, pp. 35,36

"Lord, help me to be willing to be different. Forgive me for the sin of blending in. I pray that our neighbors would see something different in our church and our people and be drawn to the Savior. Amen."

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Praising the Pope???

THE PRESIDENT: Good morning. Before I begin today, I would like to say a word about Pope John Paul II. His Holiness is a faithful servant of God and a champion of human dignity and freedom. He is an inspiration to us all. Laura and I join millions of Americans and so many around the world who are praying for the Holy Father.

President Bush is probably the most powerful and famous professing Christian today. President Bush is obviously deceived if he believes that the pope is "Holy Father." To use this title is to directly disobey a plain command of the Lord Jesus Christ. This kind of weak, professing Christianity is testimony to the fact that we are living in a day of great apostasy. There is a "form of godliness" but a denial of "the power thereof." The power to discern between good and evil certainly comes to mind.

The Church: The Old Cross and The New Cross

“But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord JesusChrist, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.” — Galatians 6:14

· The old cross slew men; the new cross entertains them.
· The old cross condemned; the new cross amuses.
· The old cross destroyed confidence in the flesh;the new cross encourages it.
· The old cross brought tears and blood; the new cross brings laughter.

THE FLESH, smiling and confident, preaches and sings about the cross; before that cross it bows and toward that cross it points with carefully staged histrionics— but upon that cross it will not die, and the reproach of that cross it stubbornly refuses to bear.

I well know how many smooth arguments can be marshalled in supportof the new cross. Does not the new cross win converts and make many followers and so carry the advantage of numerical success? Should we not adjust ourselves to the changing times? Have we not heard the slogan, "New days, new ways"? [Jim says, "Now just how many times do we hear this thrown out in today's world???"] And who but someone very old and very conservative would insist upon death as the appointed way to life? And who today is interested in a gloomy mysticism that would sentence its flesh to a cross and recommend self-effacing humility as a virtue actually to be practiced by modern Christians? These are the arguments, along with many more flippant still, which are brought forward to give an appearance of wisdom to the hollow and meaningless cross of popular Christianity.

From A.W. Tozer’s: The Pursuit of Man, pp. 53,54

"Lord, it's not popular today to be 'old-fashioned.' But I commit myself today to the old cross. Help me today to deny myself, to take up my cross, and to follow You. Amen."