Thursday, March 25, 2010

Does the Eucharist make one a Christian?

Ours is an age of spiritual confusion and amnesia. There are so many religions and beliefs out there, how can they all be wrong? There is a growing acceptance of religious ecumenism, allowing that all religions are equal paths to God (never mind they don’t agree on what or who or what gender God is). Paul warns Timothy in his first letter to his young protégé:

1 Timothy 4:1 But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons,

In one of our church association meetings last year, we had a guest speaker from the State Office, come, and he was presenting a book to us on ministry, by Ken Blanchard. Blanchard is a New Age sympathizer with many New Age affinities, and friendship with Rick Warren. This book presented some good ministry principles derived from the life of Jesus, but in the section dealing with prayer, Blanchard subtly introduces mysticism, teaching readers to (unknowingly) take part in transcendental meditation.

And what is more amazing, is that when this was brought to the light, it was laughed off by those in higher authority. Our churches are being compromised by mysticism which is new age spirituality.

Because Chrisitans have forgotten our past, and the past persecutions, men and women giving their lives for the Biblical principles of Sola Scriptura (Scripture Alone), Sola Fida (Faith Alone) and Sola Gratis (Grace Alone), we believe it’s okay to join with other religions.

What does it mean to be of the Protestant Faith? It means that you are a person who denies the authority or legitimacy of the Roman Catholic Church or the Pope. In fact, many Protestant Theologians labeled the Pope as Antichrist or the Church as the Whore that sits upon the Great Beast, who was drunk with the blood of the Saints (Rev. 17:6). The reason for this identification by Protest-ant believers of Scripture Alone, is because the Roman Church put to death anyone who believe the Bible contains sole authority for the Christian life, and anyone who taught salvation by Faith Alone by Grace Alone through Scripture Alone. Foxe’s Book of Martyrs details the executions of thousands of the faithful by the Roman Church, through Inquisitions and Crusades.

More Bible-Believing Protestants have been put to death by the Roman Catholic Church than any other institution or religion in history, though now Islam may be making up for that. But the Roman Catholic Church, which teaches salvation by works, by doing or observing the sacraments and worshipping the Eucharist.

We read in Scripture that salvation is “by grace, through faith and that not of yourselves. It is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast” (Eph 2:8,9). Observing the sacraments in order to be saved is works. Works is defined by “anything we work or can merit to earn or achieve our own salvation.” Paul says repeatedly in his New Testament letters that salvation is NOT obtained through works or law.

Galatians 2:16 16 nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified.

Romans 3:20 20 because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.

Word is that now Joseph Prince is starting to teach that the bread and wine become the body and blood of Christ once it is received. He’s introducing an element of mysticism into the Lord’s supper, as normally observed by Protestants. Lighthouse trails did an article back in 2007 reporting on the New Evangelization strategy that the Roman Catholic Church has to bring Protestants “back into the fold.”

This new method of Evangelism is to place new emphasis upon the Eucharist, which they teach is the second coming of Christ “All Catholics are expected to worship the host (Eucharistic Adoration of the transformed wafer), and church leadership says it is anathema (to be accursed) to reject this teaching….”

When I worked for Campus Crusade for Christ in the Slovak Republic, one of my favorite historic cities to go to was nearby Prague. They had such beautiful old European architecture, grand palaces and Cathedrals. But right in the historic old city square, there was a statute of a man being burned at the stake. His name was John Huss. He came to Prague under the pretence of safe travel given to him by Roman Catholic authorities. When he arrived, the Catholics seized Huss and tied him to a stake, put wood under and around him, and lit him to burn as a heretic, according to Roman Catholic proclamation.

What was his crime? He taught authority and belief in the Bible alone, and not in the immoral Roman Popes or clergy. He taught that salvation is by grace through faith in Christ alone. He also taught (along with other Protest-ant Reformers) that there is no such thing as indulgences to buy time off purgatory, and that purgatory is not a Biblical teaching.

Protestant Christians, we know salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, and that God’s word alone is the inerrant, infallible revelation that gives us all that we need for salvation, apart from human authority. The Roman Catholic Church, today as always, is a false religion, that teaches salvation by works, and sends millions of people straight to hell.

If you’re reading this and are Catholic, You should read the Bible, especially the gospel of John, if you want to find out how to be saved. You do not have to confess your sins to a priest. You don’t have to perform any rites or rituals to get into the kingdom of heaven. All you have to do is believe the Gospel give in the pages of scripture:

Romans 10:9-13 9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

11 For the Scripture says, "WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED." 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13 for "WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED."

Monday, March 15, 2010

When Does God's Love End and His Hatred Start?

An excellent question was presented to me. When in a sinner’s life does God’s love for that sinner end and His hate begin? This is a difficult question, but I think part of understanding it is understanding the nature of man and of God.

First, in beginning this statement, we need to understand man’s condition. Man is fallen from the sinless state in which God created him (Gen 3:6,7). We are born with a sinful nature. “The heart [of man] is wicked and deceitful above all things. Who can understand it?” (Jer. 17:9). Romans 3 tells us: 10As it is written: "There is no one righteous, not even one; 11there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God.

Romans 5:10

For if, when we were God's enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!

Colossians 1:21

Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior.

There is nothing good in mankind to seek God or want God (Rom 3:10-11). “Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God” (Rom. 8:8). Eph 2:1 says: “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins.”

18 For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ, 19 whose end is destruction, whose god is their appetite, and whose glory is in their shame, who set their minds on earthly things. Phillipians 3:18,19

So the Bible describes man as hostile, an enemy of God, spiritually dead in his sins (Gen 2:17). There is no way we can please God. Isaiah tells us that even our good deeds are like polluted garments to God (Is. 64:6). Our nature is so thoroughly pervaded with sin, there is nothing in us that can want God (Rom 3:10-11). Jesus said, “No one can come to me unless the Father draws him” Jn 6:44. We are dead in our sins, and all of us, apart from God’s grace, are running headlong straight to hell. And if not for His Amazing Grace, that’s where we all should end up. The only thing we can earn from God in our sinful nature is condemnation. We are all guilty and deserving of hell.

Of God, we know that He is love (1 Jn 4:7-10). That is His nature. God is love. God created man upon the earth, and provided a Savior to redeem him from his sins. Scripture says: For God so loved the world, that He sent his only begotten Son... (Jn 3:16).

That is a characteristic of God's being. God IS love. But yes, because He is love, He MUST punish sin and sinners go to the place of punishment God created for Satan and his fellow fallen-angels (Mt 25:41). Part of God being love, is that God is Just or Righteous. He must punish evil.

In the Bible, a person’s name was very important, and had to do with Characteristics of that person. So when God revealed His name to Moses, it was very significant. God was revealing to sinful man WHO HE IS. He said: Exodus 34:6-7 Then the LORD passed by in front of him and proclaimed, "The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and bounding in lovingkindness and truth; 7 who keeps lovingkindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin; yet He will by no means leave the guilty unpunished, visiting the iniquity of fathers on the children and on the grandchildren to the third and fourth generations."

We know that all have sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God (Rom 3:23). So here's the dilemma: Why doesn't God send us all to hell? For He is perfectly righteous and just and there is no sin in Him (1 Jn 5:1). Because He is Love (eternally), as a manifestation of His love, He sent the Savior at the right time to die for the sins of those whom God would redeem.

Pastor John Piper ( gave an illustration that I find very helpful. It's like humanity is in a mass running full speed away from God. But God has mercy, and He reaches out and saves some. So I don’t think that it’s so much of an issue about when His love starts or ends. All people on earth experience the love and kindness of God.

Matthew 5:44-45 44 "But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

All people on earth experience the goodness and general grace of God. “Every good thing given, and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of heavenly lights, who does not change like the shifting shadows.” Jas. 1:17.

In Romans we read: Romans 9:13 13 Just as it is written, "JACOB I LOVED, BUT ESAU I HATED." One thing we need to keep in mind is, God does not hate as humans hate. Jesus said that if we hate our brother in our heart, we are guilty of murder. The lives of Jacob and Esau are very instructive. What is the difference between Jacob and Esau. Scripture says God hated Esau. His purpose of election was upon Jacob. But what did that look like in their lives. God fulfilled all his promises to and blessed Esau, so that at their reunion after their long estrangement, Esau needed nothing of Jacobs possessions. God had blessed Esau with riches and earthly prosperity (Gen 33:9). But Jacob had been marked with the discipline of God, for his holiness (Heb. 12:10). He walked up to his brother with a limp (Gen 32:25,31). That is the difference between those the LORD redeems and those he doesn’t; those whom He adopts as His children, he disciplines for their holiness.


Saturday, March 13, 2010

"Why sit we here until we die?" 2Kings 7:3

This is a "morning devotional" by C.H. Spurgeon, the great British preacher.  I thought this was an insightful, encouraging message that I hope will be a blessing for you in these times.

Dear reader, this little book was mainly intended for the edification of believers, but if you are yet unsaved, our heart yearns over you: and we would fain say a word which may be blessed to you. Open your Bible, and read the story of the lepers, and mark their position, which was much the same as yours. If you remain where you are you must perish; if you go to Jesus you can but die. "Nothing venture, nothing win," is the old proverb, and in your case the venture is no great one. If you sit still in sullen despair, no one can pity you when your ruin comes; but if you die with mercy sought, if such a thing were possible, you would be the object of universal sympathy. None escape who refuse to look to Jesus; but you know that, at any rate, some are saved who believe in Him, for certain of your own acquaintances have received mercy: then why not you? The Ninevites said, "Who can tell?" Act upon the same hope, and try the Lord's mercy. To perish is so awful, that if there were but a straw to catch at, the instinct of self-preservation should lead you to stretch out your hand. We have thus been talking to you on your own unbelieving ground, we would now assure you, as from the Lord, that if you seek Him He will be found of you. Jesus casts out none who come unto Him. You shall not perish if you trust Him; on the contrary, you shall find treasure far richer than the poor lepers gathered in Syria's deserted camp. May the Holy Spirit embolden you to go at once, and you shall not believe in vain. When you are saved yourself, publish the good news to others. Hold not your peace; tell the King's household first, and unite with them in fellowship; let the porter of the city, the minister, be informed of your discovery, and then proclaim the good news in every place. The Lord save thee ere the sun goes down this day.

—Morning and Evening

Friday, March 5, 2010

Haiti Pres Calls for Prayer and Fasting to God of the Bible

For all who would like to see a great ministerial coverage of Hiaiti's proclamation, visit, look at the video for Thursday, March 4. Hurry, he changes it the following Monday or Turesday, so there's little time to view it.

As a result of this national gathering of Haitians, many turnred from false gods to the One true God, including, get this, 100 vodoo priests. They turned from their majic and in repentance, they surrendered their lives to the Lord Jesus Christ. Our natioanal media didn't touch this! Internet search turned up only three references of coverage/mention of the prayer and fasting in Haiti, and two were Christian!

Blessings to all awainting His arrival!