Thanks to the J.C. Ryle Quote site for this great quote today:
There is no greater delusion than the common idea that it is possible to live wickedly, and yet rise again gloriously—to be without Christ in this world, and yet to be a saint in the next. ... However carelessly men may go on while they live, they secretly cling to the hope that they will be found among the saints when they die. They seem to embrace the idea that there is some cleansing, purifying effect produced by death, and that, whatever they may be in this life, they will be found “suitable for the inheritance of the saints” in the life to come. But it is all a delusion.
~ J.C. Ryle
My husband receives these great little booklets once in a while from the Free Grace Broadcaster. Each one has various articles from writers in the past writing on a particular topic. In the fall of 2004, the topic was Idolatry and the issue is filled with very interesting and thought provoking articles.
I've had open one article in particular for quite some time and I've been reading over a section almost daily because I think it's so important. The article is titled Idolatrous Worship and the author is John Flavel. Flavel lived in the 1600s so sometimes the reading of his work is a bit difficult but very worth it.
Under the second point in the article which is:
"Because nothing more provokes and inflames the fiery wrath of the Lord, Who is a jealous God than this [Idolatry] doth," Flavel asks the question:
"But what mean you by idolatry and superstition? We hope there are no such things practiced among us; Pagans ... may be guilty of it?"
He responds to the question ... and here's the meat of what I keep coming to as I read:
"Idolatry then, according to the true and generally received definition of it, is a religious worship given either to that which is not the true God or to the true God Himself, but otherwise than He hath prescribed in His Word. From hence we plainly see that worship may be idolatrous in two ways:
"1. In respect of object: if it have any thing besides the true God for it's object, it is gross idolatry such as the First Commandment condemns, i.e., pagan idolatry, which the light of the gospel hath long since profligated (driven away) and expelled out of these parts of the world. Or,
"2. In respect of the manner: when we worship the true God, but in a way and manner which He hath not prescribed in His word, but is invented and devised by ourselves. And this is condemned as idolatry in the Second Commandment; 'Thou shalt not make unto thee, i.e., out of thing own brain or out of thine own head, any graven image under which title all human inventions, corruptiong the pure and simple worship of God, are prohibited as idolatrous. This inventing or making to ourselves is that which makes it idolatry (Amos 5:26, Numbers 15:59). Hence the molten calf became an idol to the Israelites - not because it was the object of their worship, for it is plaint it was Jehovah, the true God, they intended to worship by it - appears from Exodus 32:4,5: 'Tomorrow is a feast to the Lord.' But yet it being a way or manner of worshipping the true God, which was of their own devising, it became idolatry."
I LOVE RIGHTEOUSNESS
Righteousness is associated with Thankfulness
Righteousness is associated with walking in Light
Righteousness is associated with Persecution
Proverbs 11:8, "The righteous is delivered out of trouble."
2 Timothy 2:12, "If we suffer, we shall also reign with him."
Righteousness is associated with Posterity
Love from NANCY CAMPBELL
I am walking in righteousness to bless my future descendants.
sending a blank email to email@example.com
I read this post by Tim Challis today - just excellent! I wish I would have written it myself but since he did such a fabulous job, I'll send you over to his blog for more info. Here's just a little taste:
CLICK HERE to read the rest of the post "Solomon on Social Media"
If Solomon were alive today and we were to ask him how we are to relate to one another in this digital world, if we were to ask him how we can honor God in our use of all these social media available to us today, here is how he might respond.
Count to ten before posting, sharing, sending, submitting. “Do you see a man who is hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him (29:20).” How many arguments could be avoided and how many relationships saved if people were only a little less hasty with their words? Before posting an article or before replying to a Facebook status, it is always (always!) a good idea to re-read what you have written and consider if your words accurately express your feelings and if expressing such feelings is necessary and edifying. And while I’m on the topic, a spell-check doesn’t hurt either.
Here are some more of my notes on A.W. Pink's essay entitled The Scriptures and the World. It's pretty serious stuff - not hard but very hard at the same time:
4. We profit from the word when our hearts are weaned from the world. (2 John 2:15)
Just as a little child will drop a dirty object when something more pleasing is offered to it, so the heart which is in communion with god will say Philippians 3:8
What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ...
"Righteousness exalts a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people,"
What does it mean to be a righteous family?
Righteousness is associated with Life
Righteousness is associated with Fruitfulness
Righteousness is associated with Wisdom
Love from NANCY CAMPBELL
More notes from A.W. Pink's valuable essay: "The Scripture and the World"
3. We profit form the word when we learn that Christ died to deliver us from this present evil world (Galatians 1:4)
Christ "breaks the power of the world over their hearts. HE makes them independent of it that they neither covet it's favors nor fear it's frowns."
As a Christian grows in grace he recognized this and acts accordingly. He seeks yet fuller deliverance from this present evil world and begs God to free him from it completely. That which once charmed him now nauseates.
This is so true - I've seen over the years as I've grown in my relationship with Christ and as I have studied the bible to truly live for Christ out of devotion to Him for His gift of life to me, that the things which I used to "love", covet, crave, live to do, etc., have become nauseating to me. Occasionally I'll feel a little tug toward something like that and then I'll feel this repulsion ... and thankfulness that it no longer captures me.
Do you find the same thing happening as you grow and seek to obey God's word?
Here are some more of my notes from the essay "The Scriptures and the World" by A.W. Pink
The word forbids us to be conformed to the world and have our affections set on it. "... one point at which we may test ourselves is, 'Does my reading and study of God's Word make me less worldly?'"
1. We profit from the word when our eyes are opened to the true character of the world. "It is much to be thankful for when the soul is able to see that the "world" is a gigantic fraud, a hollow bauble, a vile thing which must one day be burned up." World=fallen human nature, the organized kingdom of the carnal mind (Romans8:7).
2. We profit from the word when we learn that the world is an enemy to be resisted and overcome. "Whosoever is born of God overcometh the world" 1 John 5:4. "A fit sense of the perfections and presence of God makes the world appear less than nothing." Do the things which are so highly valued by the unregenerate charm and entrall you?
More notes later...