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Sunday, January 29, 2017

Hot Potatoes with Jackets On - Part 1 # 3

Hot Potatoes With Jackets On Part 1 # 3

The sort of Christianity some people have will not give them an easy pillow in the dying hour, neither will it admit them into heaven on good works, nor on their own extraordinary reputation.

Putting your converts into some Churches I know would be equivalent to putting a live baby into a dead mother's arms.

The meanest trick I know of to play on an unregenerate man is to take him into the Church in his unconverted condition and then expect him to be religious and spiritual when he does not know the ABC's of conviction.

To be a physical dwarf is most unfortunate, to be an intellectual dwarf is much worse, but to be a Christian dwarf is an awful tragedy and there are entirely too many such tragedies.

God is good, always good, and only good.
God is wise, always wise,and only wise.
God is love, always love, and only love.

The true philosophy of life is the Christian philosophy and their philosophy is self-denial, cross bearing, and following Jesus day by day, hour by hour, and moment by moment.

An infidel lay dying, a friend came along and said, "John, hold on." "The dying infidel said, "hold on, I have nothing to hold on to."

An educated crook is the most dangerous man in the world.

While it is no disgrace to be poor, yet it is mighty inconvenient.

People may be healthful, wealthy, witty, learned and famous, but miserable because they lack holiness.

One may be poor, weak,and ignorant, but supremely happy because of his religious status.

Mr. Wesley said, "Anything that is essentially new in religion is essentially false."

Bishop Warren said, "We have made much advancement in missions as a Church the last hundred years, but we need to swing back a hundred years to the spirituality of our forefathers."

To reject new light, we run against the God Who loves us, the Christ Who redeemed us, and the Holy Spirit Who witnesses to our salvation.

In a crucial hour Nelson said, "England expects every man to do his duty." Could God expect less?

We may not be without faults and mistakes, but we must be without sin.

We need jet black conviction, a blood red regeneration, a sky blue conversion, and a snow white sanctification.

The first man fell - Adam.
The strongest man fell - Samson.
The wisest man fell - Solomon.

Yet people tell us it is impossible to backslide!

Men would be glad to be Christians if they could be on their own terms.

A lady said to Mr. Moody, "Don't you think it will be all right for me to give lessons in dancing to my daughter in order for her to be graceful?" Mr. Moody replied, "She had better have grace in her heart than in her heels."

One said, his preaching was both soothing and satisfying; so soothing that one could sleep all the time he was preaching, and so satisfying one could hear him one time and never come back again.

The Church of Jesus Christ is not made up simply of formal or even holiness denominations; they are but nicknames. His church is not a dead church. It is not composed of stone and mortar, great organs, tremendous choirs, and a well-trained ministry, not even as a ritualistic form. It is a spiritual church, yes, the Bride of Christ.

Mr. Wesley said, "Make all you can, save all you can, and give all you can." Yet many seem to say today, "Make all you can, and can all you make."

You cannot pray loud enough and shed tears enough to get God to change the plan of salvation.

Having a wrong attitude, you close heaven to you.

Your present attitude toward people and things, essentials and nonessentials, will have much to do with your future.

Your latch string hangs on the inside and Jesus knocks at the outside, but will not come in until invited.

Get the consent of your will to do right while God speaks and the Holy Spirit strives.

He will straighten all question marks into exclamation points.

No man is so well born but what he needs to be born again.

What did Judas have in mind as he leaped into a suicide's eternity?

In the mathematics of Christianity there is a subtraction as well as there is an addition.

Nothing good to say about inbred sin.

Christianity will fix you up so you can get along with people as a Christian should.

Hurry up and grow big enough not to ask so many silly questions, for tribulation worketh patience.

~W. B. Dunkum~

(The End)

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Hot Potatoes With Jackets On Part 1 # 2

Hot Potatoes With Jackets On Part 1 # 2

The preparation of self is of more importance than the preparation of the message. The surgeon studies for years before he begins to practice. He will rest his body, quiet his nerves,and disinfect with utmost care before an operation. As a surgeon of souls, are we careful or careless?

Jesus of Nazareth is the only One who can save us, if He does not we are lost. God took upon Himself human flesh and became a man. He lived among men and was tempted as we are, was touched with the feelings of our infirmities. Why did He thus come? To start a new religion? To establish a higher and nobler philosophy of life? Oh, no, but to redeem a lost and fallen race. To give His life a ransom for others that those who repent, confess, and forsake their sins and take up the cross and follow Him, might not perish but have everlasting life. Today, He may be passing by to save the unsaved and sanctify those who will go with Him all the way and bear the reproach.

His presence will sanctify your joys, relieve your sorrows; it will sweeten your victories, compensate your defeats, it will make make life abundant and worth while and death a triumphant victory.

We have passed through a depression which has hit us tremendously hard morally, commercially, and spiritually. Such unscriptural sermons coming from the pulpit, we are caused to wonder, what next. Truly the preacher is preaching from his head and not from his heart. Many of his sermons contain ministerial and brain sweat but almost wholly void of heart and soul agony.

We are told that the work of sixty-six muscles are necessary to produce a frown, but we only use sixteen for a smile. Why not wear a smile and save the difference?

You say you don't believe in revivals, neither does the devil. So you are a chip off the old block and believe like your father, the devil.

Start early in life to use everything that comes to you whether pleasant or unpleasant, fortunate or unfortunate to your advantage and as a stepping stone. Do not allow an unpleasant letter,an unreasonable criticism, an un-Christian remark,or the loss of property, cast a shadow over your life, but let all such become stepping stones to higher and nobler activity and greater usefulness in the Master's service. Don't let your pathway become darkened by others who would injure you, but when an object confronts you, surmount it as a stepping stone and do not allow it for one moment to become a stumbling block.

"Good news which shall be to all people." Indeed it is good news, it has become a cosmopolitan story. God puts everybody on a common level. No privileged group among the upper circles will ever monopolize redemption. It is free to all, rulers and beggars, tax-payers and tax-collectors.

You will find peace at Calvary and power at Pentecost.

An open outbreaking sinner is easier reached than a religious formalist who has never experienced a change of heart.

If you keep a "red hot" experience, you can burn your way through this cold world.

Everybody seems to be ready for physical healing, but a hunger for spiritual healing has to be created.

If your life is hid with Christ in God, you will automatically do right, not just to get to heaven.

Those who live in the Spirit, walk in the Spirit, and have their conversation in heaven,are a puzzle to those who have only reached the water works, churchanity, and wrapped in the garment of morality.

Let us always bear in mind that Christian character without Christ is an utter impossibility.

Wesley in writing to a preacher said, "Study to be small." Mr. Finney said, "Unless a Christian was broken to pieces every few weeks they are unfit for service."

When you begin to argue, you are on slippery ground. I would advise you to argue with no one, not even the devil.

Sanctified people are a blessing to any church, but a dry, hollow, hypocritical professor will ruin any church just as he has defiled the church he is now in.

To go with God one hundred per cent looks like a lonely and isolated route, but it pays remarkable dividends both here and hereafter.

A religion that costs nothing is worth nothing.

A religion without a Cross is without a Crown.

Christianity is neither selfish nor clannish. We must give to God in order to keep, and share with others in order to hold our standing with God and man.

If the Church of today is to live and function, she must return to primitive Christianity.

Some people I know desire to please God when it does not offend the devil.

No one has to have a lawsuit to collect the wages of sin. "For the wages of sin is death."

The Mercy Seat is the place where heaven and earth meet and the place where you meet God.

Don't allow yourself to become run-down dodging duty.

Jesus Christ understood both sin and its cure as He can well handle all questions pertaining to sin and its fearful consequences.

It is hard to think of parents sending their children to Sunday school to be taught by teachers who teach a Sunday school class in the morning, then refuse to stay for preaching service, but rush home to get an early hot dinner, then on the devil's territory the rest of the day. They will be mighty poor examples for the children the coming week.

Religion is nothing funny-aiming to make a fool out of you - but if you get enough of it, it will make you either a gentleman or a lady.

If you will let God clean you up on the inside, you will not be long cleaning up the outside.

You may feel humiliated if caught praying, but nobler people than you are have been mighty in prevailing with God.

Brethren, I tell you the actual fact, lots of people have religion not worth paying taxes on!

God does not direct some things He permits.

Be a tither or be uncomfortable.

~W. B. Dunkum~

(continued with # 3)

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Hot Potatoes with Jackets On Part 1 # 1

Hot Potatoes with Jackets On Part 1 # 1

Factions speak louder than words, some people have enough religion to make them miserable when they should have enough salvation to make them happy.

Excuse makers get in full time; they work seven days a week, never stop for flu epidemic, political campaign, or the scarcity of finance. Wall Street may fail to function, yet they are busy day and night, winter and summer, hot or cold, soon or late, wet or dry, north, east, south and west.

Some men inactive service on fat salaries are suffering intensely because of a swollen head, and are giving very little or no attention to a dried-up heart.

Jesus Christ came to redeem from sin, and His work is a glorious success, yet thousands are not accepting Him.

Don't let your ears be a dumping ground for the busy tattlers and fire-side gossipers.

Since shouters have lost their zeal and fire, it may be they haven't anything to shout about, as they are no longer heard to shout in the sanctuary.

Out of one million holiness people of today, we are at times caused to wonder where the holy people are: for there is avast difference in their manner of worship and everyday life; such as actions, walk, talk, conversation, and dress.

The holiness churches will never rise higher than its pulpit leadership, therefore we need a trained ministry to intelligently indoctrinate those of our faith in the fundementals for which we stand.

Why should a Church function when it fails to get people to God, is it worthy of its name?

Some want to know where Cain got his wife. To be frank, it is none of your business where he got her, but if you must know, he got her where he found her! Now the question that concerns you is not whee you got your wife but how have you treated her since you got her!

Some people can only see the mote in their neighbor's eye, when, no doubt, both a beam and log are in their own eye.

I frequently see people who act as if their religion hurts them.

You will never make a success in peddling excuses, as you will find the people are all well supplied.

Did you meet Mr. "A" who has a swollen head and a dried up heart?

If you are big enough to give advice, then be Christian enough to take advice.

Your spirituality is not seen by your ability to see the faults and flaws of others, but by lifting them to a higher plane of victory, usefulness, and Christian living. By all means be uncompromising, but don't be Pharisaical.

Let us build into our every day living such valuable principles and character which will stand the test of time with values only seen when the cobwebs of familiarity, prejudice, jealousy, and misunderstandings have been swept away by the hand of time and our hearts softened by regrets, sorrows, and the consciousness of our own shortcomings.

The brave generals and the strong soldiers will some day fight their last battle, but it is better to fight under the banner of Jesus Christ against sin, the world, and the devil. We may get but little praise while we fight and go down to the grave with little honor, but we expect that which is far better than earthly praise, honor and rewards. We shall have "a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

A Crucified Lord must have a Crucified Bride.

No longer do we look to the blood of bulls and goats to atone for our sins, but to Jesus Christ. All the types and shadows of the old Covenant culminate in Him as the Mediator of the New Covenant, once for all,and, by faith in His blood, we obtain eternal redemption. Truly they did kill the beast and sprinkle the blood upon the altar, but now we are to get on the altar ourselves!

Some refer to holiness indirectly and incidentally as if it were an added privilege or private luxury, as though other matters were of equal or greater importance; yet we insist that nothing in all the universe is of equal importance as sanctification. Holiness becomes an absolute necessity in order to retain our justified relationship with God. While we admit it is a luxurious experience, yet it is an absolute necessity when it comes to preparation and fitness for heaven.

Richter said, "He who being the holiest among the mighty, and the mightiest among the holy, lifted with His pierced hands empires off their hinges and turned the stream of the centuries out of its channel and still governs the ages."

The natural fallen man in his fallibility and limitations cannot fully comprehend the infinite love of God.

Social Service Workers may put a new suit on a man, but it takes Jesus Christ to put a new man into the suit.

When all doors seem closed, you will find the way to the Throne of Grace open unless you closed it yourself!

God is looking for intercessors as a miner looks for gold. An intercessor is one who prays for another as if he were that other person. Can the Lord count on you becoming that type of an intercessor?

Who ever heard of a man marrying a woman to reform her, yet women will marry men to reform them; the decision is they have failed in their chosen field of service. Such women might be more successful both here and hereafter if they operated having headquarters only in no man's land.

While the devil hates the Church, yet he puts his approval upon much of its work. No doubt many from the "amen corner" and front pews will awaken in hell to be lost forever.

Of all the contemptible people of earth, I think it would be difficult to find anyone to go in class with the community gossiper.

Don't you know an angel in heaven could not afford to come down and mix with some church members I know and then go back to heaven without being fumigated and cleansed with carbolic acid, and lye, and soap before returning!

Noah built the Ark without an ocean to swim it in. Such faith will triumph over every difficulty and master every situation.

You had better limp all the way to heaven than not get there at all. God is a God of retribution.

Chickens will come home to roost. There is no logic like the logic of facts.

You can bring glory to God and be a blessing to others as you give a clear definite testimony to what He has done for you.

Christianity has from the beginning caused people to be amazed and when it stops amazing people, it stops being truly Christian!

There is an appalling spiritual dearth and spiritual fatality among converts in these awful days.

The Campmeeting and the Church revivals are giving their time largely to getting back into line those who have gone astray. We deplore the instability, changeableness, and fickleness of the human race. Perhaps a large per cent of this loss and tragic condition is due to our coldness, formality, and indifference. My personal belief is that ten-day evangelism is not conducive to deep spirituality and the building of strong, rugged spiritual character. The short meeting points to shallowness. Hence in my judgment, the ordinary revival should run from four to six weeks.

~W. B. Dunkum~

(continued with # 2)

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Be Angry and Sin Not

Be Angry and Sin Not

If you attend church at all, you will undoubtedly hear a thousand sermons on "Be filled with the Spirit" (Ephesians 5:18) for every one sermon you hear preached on "Be ye angry, and sin not" (Ephesians 4:26). This is a command! It is not a defense for a bad temper. It is not an excuse for an explosion of bitterness from your bruised ego for personal rejection. I am talking here of Holy Anger. God get angry: "The anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses" (Exodus 4:14); "God is angry with the wicked every day" (Psalm 7:11). (If you must have a bumper sticker, try this last statement for a while - but be sure that you increase your insurance before you do so.)

The blessed preacher Paul walked down Main Street Athens, the intellectual capital of the world of his day. Acts 17:16 says in the sleepy Elizabethan English of the King James version, "His Spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry." The Amplified says it this way, "Now while Paul was awaiting them at Athens, his spirit was grieved and roused to anger as he saw that the city was full of idols." Such anger needs to come back to us today. I admit right here that I am downright angry. I am angry that Christ is wounded in the house of His friends.

Here Is An Example

Our home is less than 100 miles from Dallas - the "Athens" of the theologians. Therefore we are vulnerable to the students who come from the seminaries there, disgusted, and despondent  over the low state of spirituality in their particular classes. A professor in one such seminary tells the preacher-boys, "Remember that preaching is now a profession, and not to be viewed or represented by a sweating evangelist in a sawdust-carpeted tent. Now the preacher has status like a doctor or a seasoned lawyer." Begone such idiocy! Preaching is not a profession - it is a passion! Paul sets the standard, "Woe unto me if I preach not the Gospel!" I am angry that these professors want to world's smile on our holy calling! But no man called to the ministry needs a status symbol. He is, by the very nature of his calling, in the highest calling!

I am further angered by a statement by Bruce Cook - the former advertising agent for Coca Cola, who engineered the "I Found it" campaign. Here is the horrible comment, and it angered me: "Back in Jerusalem when the Church started, God performed a miracle there on the Day of Pentecost. They didn't have the benefit of buttons and media, so God had to do a little supernatural work there. But today, with our technology, we have available to us the opportunity to create the same kind of interest in a secular society." This wretched interpretation makes me bristle! So buttons and modern media are as likely to start a Heaven-born Holy Spirit Revival as was the Upper Room invasion from heaven? What is this but "Christian humanism?" We are capable of producing the same thing as the Blessed Holy Spirit?

Homosexual "Christians"

I am angry when I read from my friend and neighbor David Wilkerson announcing this near unbelievable perversion.

"Homosexuals now claim more than 50,000 members in their "all homosexual churches. The Metropolitan Community Church is one of many homosexual denominations springing up across the nation. I sent an observer to one of their annual "Holy Ghost" conventions in Dallas, Texas. What unbelievable blasphemy!

"Each delegate, as they registered, was given a packet which included, among other things, two "boy" magazines of all nude men and a list of all the gay bars in Dallas - so that delegates could leave the evening service, go to their selected bar, and connect with a lover for the night. And those delegates call themselves 'ministers.' How they did sing! They praised the Lord with enthusiasm, but their evangelist corrupted the Gospel beyond comprehension. He said, "Sure, Paul condemned men who changed the natural use and burned one toward another. But that's not us. We didn't change anything. We were born this way. So, come out of your closets. Be filled with the Holy Ghost, and enjoy your homosexuality!" 

My anger over this is intensified when I read that the cutback in federal spending will cause some old folks to miss meals. Yet the same federal folks on the 5th of May, 1981, gave the Metropolitan Community (homosexual) Church $380,000 of our tax money to operate four resettlement centers for Cuban refugee homosexuals. (Just let the true Church of Jesus try to get the government to give us a dime to rescue men from an eternal hell!).

Clean Up America

I am angry also when I hear preachers crying with great emotion, "Help me clean up America," when they dare not try to clean up the Church - riddled as it is with carnality and sensuality. I am angry and grieved when preachers weep over the TV that their income is decreasing, though I've never seen them weep on TV over the millions of lost souls they address every week. The God on TV is an inoffensive, undemanding God, wanting to give but requiring nothing in exchange. There is no need to take up your cross and follow Him.

"The Mush God"

Nicholas Van Hoffman has a penetrating column on the "Mush God" of today. Read it, friend. Read it twice and maybe you will weep as he speaks of the gross representation of the Holy Deity. Here is Van Hoffman"

"The Mush God has been known to appear to millionaires on golf courses. He appears to politicians at ribbon-cutting ceremonies and to clergymen speaking the invocation on national TV at either Democratic or Republican conventions. The Mush God's presence is felt during Brotherhood Week and when Rotarians come together. He is the lifeless deity President Carter was referring to when suggesting peace might come to the Middle East because the Egyptian present and Israeli Prime Minister both worshiped the Great Mushy One.

"The Mush God has no theology to speak of, being a Cream of Wheat divinity. The Mush God has no particular credo, no tenets of faith, nothing that would make it difficult for believer and non-believer alike to lower one's head when the temporary chairman tells us the Reverend, Rabbi, Father, Mufti, or So-and-so will lead us in an innocuous, harmless prayer, for this god of public occasions is not a jealous god. You can even invoke him to start a hooker convention and he/she or it won't be offended. "God of the Rotary, God of the Optimists' Club, Protector of the Buddy System, the Mush God is the Lord of secular ritual, of the necessary but hypocritical forms and formalities that hush the divisive and the derisive. The Mush God is a serviceable god whose laws are not chiseled on tablets but written on sand, open to amendment, qualification, and era-sure. This is a god that will compromise with you, make allowances and declare all wars holy, all peaces hallowed."

More Anger

My Holy Anger and burning indignation is fueled by articles like this from the pen of a "Wiseman" from the East - the Bhagwan Shree Ragneesh, writing from the Meditation Center that bears his name.

SEX - never repress it. Never be against it - rather, go deep into it with great clarity, with great love. Go like an explorer. Search all the nooks and corners of your sexuality and you will be surprised and enriched and benefited. Knowing your sexuality, one day you will stumble upon your spirituality [or get V.D. or worse] then you will become free. The future will have a totally different vision of sex. It will be more fun, more joy, more friendship, more a play than a serious affair, as it has been in the past. [The serious affair mentioned here must mean marriage.] Sex is just the beginning, not the end. But it you miss the beginning, you will miss the end also."

What logic and what warning! Why not miss the end which is torment here and hereafter? I wonder what folks who have tried this teacher's method think about it. Does he have "revival crusades" with living, bright-faced witnesses telling of their rapturous emancipation from the bondage of purity and a good conscience?

Save Those Children

I am not angered that the Moral Majority boys campaign against abortion. I am angry when the same men who say, "Save our children" bellow "Build more and bigger bombers." That's right. Blast the children in other nations into eternity, or limbless misery as they lay crippled from "our" bombers! This does not jell!

I am angry that the pulpiteers can roar from their pulpits against political injustices, yet whisper about the wrong doings in their own fellowship - also that sin is called by other names. God has no mild views of sin, so let's get back to biblical language. The soothsayers in the world are dangerous, but the "smooth-sayers" in the pulpit are equally dangerous. We now call iniquity "infirmity." Sodomy is now being "gay." The Harlot is not called a "Whore" anymore; she is inoffensively named a "Call Girl." These are not terms for every sermon, but they have some kind of intimidation and disgrace attached to them, which makes the preachers afraid to use them (and sinners afraid to hear them). But the Bible uses them!

I am angry when I hear preachers saying, "We had our best concert ever last week when the "XYZ" Singers came to our church. The main auditorium was jammed with extra seats and we had to run extensions into the church hall for the overflow! Yet, that same popular, prosperous church can comfortably seat its prayer meeting in just about the smallest room in the facility. What a slap in the face for a prayer-answering God!! What a public declaration that the offering from the concert patrons is more important than prayer!

I am angry with people who withhold their own money from the Lord, but then turn His House into a Flea Market to raise church funds. And believe me, I am stirred, sick, and angry when I try to realize that 90% of Gospel preaching is to only 10% of the world's population!

Mormons Get "More Men"

"Newsweek" for April 27, 1981, states: "This year the Mormons will field more missionaries - about 30,000 in all - than any other church in the United States ... their single purpose is to labor 16 hours a day, 6 days a week, spreading the Gospel according to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints." [Now notice the discipline attached to this effort.] The discipline imposed on Mormon missionaries is as unique as their message: no movies, television, or popular music; no phone calls to parents or girlfriends, no dates - and no going anywhere alone. Under this quasi-military regimen the L. D. S. missionaries have carried the faith across the U. S. into six continents."

I am angry at this false zeal,disturbed and deeply troubled that we have to make so many Christian Youth Camps a miniature Olympics to entice kids to so-called Bible study. Dare we try to get kids away from TV, sports, etc., for a week of solid concentration on eternal things? It seems more correct with the emphasis on sports and church programs, and church leagues of bowling, baseball, etc., that we should be singing: "Onward Christian Sportsmen - forget about the war - look at all the prizes - you're contending for"

I am angry when I think that the government will subsidize a science effort to find out where man came from but will not give a dime to tell men where they are going. God, baptize us with the Holy Anger that will set us on a course of hell-disturbing, heaven-enriching intercession!!

All these sad events I have mentioned would be taken  care of by a heaven-born, sin-convicting visitation of the Holy Spirit.

I am angry at the devil's monopoly of this age.
I am angry that the Church sleeps on.
I am angry that the Church, in many (and maybe most) cases, is an entertainment center. Lord have mercy!! "Wilt Thou not revive us again, that Thy people may rejoice in Thee?" (Psalm 85:6).

~Leonard Ravenhill~

(The End)

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Picture of A Prophet

Picture of A Prophet

The prophet in his day is fully accepted of God and totally rejected by men.

Years back, Dr. Gregory Mantle was right when he said, "No man can be fully accepted until he is totally rejected." The prophet of the Lord is aware of both these experiences. They are his "brand name."

The group, challenged by the prophet because they are smug and comfortably insulated from a perishing world in their warm but untested theology, is not likely to vote him "Man of the year" when he refers to them as habituates of the synagogue of satan!

The prophet comes to set up that which is upset. His work is to call into line those who are out of line! He is unpopular because he opposes the popular in morality and spirituality. In a day of faceless politicians and voiceless preachers, there is not a more urgent national need than that we cry to God for a prophet! The function of the prophet, as Austin-Sparks once said, "has almost always been that of recovery."

The prophet is God detective seeking for a lost treasure. The degree of his effectiveness is determined by his measure of unpopularity. Compromise is not known to him.

He has no price tags.
He is totally "otherworldly."
He is unquestionably controversial and unpardonably hostile.
He marches to another drummer!
He breathes the rarefied air of inspiration.
He is a "seer" who comes to lead the blind.
He lives in the heights of God and comes into the valley with a "thus saith the Lord."
He shares some of the foreknowledge of God and so is aware of impending judgment.
He lives in "splendid isolation."
He is forthright and outright, but he claims no birthright.
His message is "repent", be reconciled to God or else...!"
His prophecies are parried.

His truth brings torment, but his voice is never void.
He is the villain of today and the hero of tomorrow.
He is excommunicated while alive and exalted when dead!
He is dishonored with epithets when breathing and honored with epithets when dead.
He is a schoolmaster to bring us to Christ, but few "make the grade" in his class.
He is friendless while living and famous when dead.
He is against the establishment in ministry; then he is established as a saint by posterity.
He eats daily the bread of affliction while he ministers, but he feeds the Bread of Life to those who listen.
He walks before men for days but has walked before God for years.
He announces, pronounces, and denounces!
He has a heart like a volcano and his words are as fire.
He talks to men about God.
He carries the lamp of truth amongst heretics while he is lampooned by men.
He faces God before he faces men, but he is self-effacing.
He hides with God in the secret place, but he has nothing to hide in the marketplace.
He is naturally sensitive but supernaturally spiritual.
He has passion, purpose and pugnacity.
He is ordained of God but disdained by men.

Our national need at this hour is not that the dollar recover its strength, or that we save face over the Watergate affair, or that we find the answer to the ecology problem. We need a God-sent prophet!

I am bombarded with talk or letters about the coming shortages in our national life: bread, fuel, energy. I read between the lines from people not practiced in scaring folk. They feel that the "seven years of plenty" are over for us. The "seven years of famine" are ahead. But the greatest famine of all in the nation at this given moment is a FAMINE OF THE HEARING OF THE WORDS OF GOD (Amos 8:11).

Millions have been spent on evangelism in the last twenty-five years. Hundreds of gospel messages streak through the air over the nation every day. Crusades have been held; healing meetings have made a vital contribution. "Come-outers" have "come out" and settled, too, without a nation-shaking revival. Organizers we have. Skilled preachers abound. Multi-million dollar Christian organizations straddle the nation. BUT were, oh where, is the prophet? Where are the incandescent men fresh from the holy place? Where is the Moses to plead in fasting before the holiness of the Lord for our moldy morality, our political perfidy, and sour and sick spirituality?

GOOD MEN ARE IN HIDING UNTIL THE DAY OF THEIR SHOWING FORTH. They will come. The prophet is violated during his ministry, but he is vindicated by history.

There is a terrible vacuum in evangelical Christianity today. The missing person in our ranks is the prophet. The man with a terrible earnestness. The man totally otherworldly. The man rejected by other men, even other good men, because they consider him too austere, too severely committed, too negative and unsociable.

Let him be as plain as John the Baptist.
Let him for a season be a voice crying in the wilderness of modern theology and stagnant "churchianity."
Let him be as selfless as Paul the Apostle.
Let him, too, say and live, "This ONE thing I do."
Let him reject ecclesiastical favors.
Let him be self-abasing, nonself-seeking, nonself-projecting, nonself- righteous, nonself-glorying, nonself-promoting.
Let him say nothing that will draw men to himself but only that which will move men to God.
Let him come daily from the throne room of a holy God, the place where he has received the order of the day.
Let him, under God, unstop the ears of the millions who are deaf through the clatter of shekels milked from this hour of material mesmerism.
Let him cry with a voice this century has not heard because he has seen a vision no man in this century has seen. God send us this Moses to lead us from the wilderness of crass materialism, where the rattlesnakes of lust bite us and where enlightened men, totally blind spiritually, lead us to an ever-nearing Armageddon.

God have mercy! Send us  real (God-taught) 

~Leonard Ravenhill~

(The End)

Monday, January 2, 2017

Choose Your Destiny # 4

Choose Your Destiny # 4

Now, nobody ever deliberately chose death. I'm sure of that. Wasn't it Tennyson that said, "No matter what crazy sorrow saith / No man that ever breathed with moral breath / Has ever really longed for death. They just choose the path that leads there! So they've chosen it by a series of small choices. They made the last choice of moral folly! They chose death. Not that they looked at death and said "I choose you!" but they looked at all the pleasant ways that lead there and said "I choose you!"

Young couples that get out in a car on a night like this, drink a little - you can get it somewhere - and get excited and worked up and go out onto the highway, full of jokes, borderline - and all other kind. They zoom down the highway - not one of them's choosing death. 

Ask the driver as he stops somewhere for gas, "Do you want to die?" If you can get him still long enough and quiet long enough he'll say, "Why do you ask me a foolish question! Of course not!"

Ask the girl that sits beside him, "Do you want to die?" And she said, "No, I'm too young, I've got my life ahead of me. I'm just having some fun."

Ask the two in the back seat, sitting as close as one, and said "Do you two want to die?" And they say, "No, we don't want to die, of course not!" We want to live and love and enjoy the world."

Nobody wants to die. But they wanted to drink! And they wanted to see how much was in the old car. And the boy at the wheel wanted to show off before his giggling companion. And as they round a bend they lose control and the poor, hard-working cops come along later and, sick inside, drag them out. One or two of them dead and a couple more broken. They didn't choose to die! They simply chose the way that leads there!

Choose you this day. "I set before you the way of life and the way of death, choose you this day." Toronto hasn't chosen death. Toronto's just chosen to have burlesque shows on Sunday, if I read the paper right! Toronto hasn't chosen to die and rot, like New York and Chicago. "Toronto the good" has just decided that they can't be old-fashioned and puritanical any longer. So they've opened the door. And brother, when you open that Pandora box you let out all the devils and evil that is possible to know.

They say that before Rome collapsed under the blows of the Norsemen that policemen had to accompany women on the streets - if wasn't safe. And in great areas and sections of the city of Chicago my wife and I never allowed our daughter to go alone. Never! Somebody had to be with her.

Cities don't choose to rot and die; they just choose to do that which leads them to rot and die! And just as men do not choose life - or death, they do not choose life, in itself! No man can stand up and say "I choose life" in that sense he says "I choose the one who gives life. I choose the way to life. I choose life by choosing the way that leads there. I choose life by choosing the one that gives life. I choose life by repudiating death."

I choose life! I've made a lot of fool choices in my time, I suppose, but I've never regretted the one I made when I decided that I would become a Christian. There was nobody in my home that was a Christian - nobody - not any influence anywhere, anywhere in my whole circle of relations and close friends, not one! But by the good mercy of God I said I would. I didn't know what I was getting myself in for! I didn't know the joys and I didn't know the sorrows. I didn't know the pleasures and I didn't know the hardships. But I chose.

And so men choose life by choosing the course that leads to life. Doesn't the Bible say, "Choose you this day, choose life"! Yes! But you can't walk up and say "I choose life" you have to come where the life is. You choose water but you come where the water is and drink. You choose to be saved but you have to come where the Lord and Saviour is to be saved and give yourself into His hands.

So we make the right choice by starting with repentance. I'm talking to people who are taking their religion very casually, very casually indeed! You're very casual about it all. Watch out that you don't cast your lot with mortality! Watch out that you don't say to the worms "They are my sister." Watch out that you don't say to death "This is my brother!" You can't afford to be casual.

There are people that would influence you. Some of you would be better Christians if you weren't under the influence of certain who aren't good Christians. Some of you are being influenced to make wrong choices. And those that influence you are blind. Or they're hard or they're calloused or they're morally irresponsible and they're influencing you! But did you ever think they can't help you in that day? Can't help you!

When the Jews wanted to kill Jesus they hunted his least worthy disciple, Judas, the one that they figured would be - the one they could reach, as they say in politics. So they went to him and sure enough, they'd guessed right; they could reach him, he could be bought. So they said "We'd like to arrest your master but we're not familiar with his face, we don't know which one he is and we don't want to make a scene. We'd like to slip in quietly and put some handcuffs on the one that's your master but they're all dressed alike and we don't know one from the other."

He said "I'll tell you who he is - for a price. Eighteen dollars. For eighteen dollars I'll tell you who." They said "All right. Here's the eighteen dollars." He said, "Now, we'll figure it like this: when I get to a certain place I'll run up to one of the twelve - the eleven, and I'll kiss one of them and the one that I kiss, that's your man."

And so he went up to Jesus and said "Rabbi". Jesus turned and sadly said to him, "Friend". He kissed his cheek and they grabbed him. Then later on, when Judas had an attack of conscience and the money burned like fire in his hand and he saw them lead his loved friend away, he turned against himself viciously and ran back to these evil men and threw the eighteen dollars at their feet and said "I have betrayed innocent blood!" and they said - oh, the infinitely devilish cynicism of this - they said, "What's that to us? You see to that!"

That fellow that's leading you off, he's influencing you now and leading you away but in that day he'll say, "What's that to me? I can't answer for you. See you to that!"

That business partner that's persuading you to cut edges and corners and be a bit crooked - he smiles and pats your back and tells people "Good old Joe, he's a great guy, he's a great guy, ha-ha!" But there'll be a day when "good old Joe" will stand all by himself and that'll be you and your business partner won't be able to help you at all.

I tell you, I'm frankly trying to influence you! I have nothing to gain by you choosing the right, not a dime have I to gain by it. I have nothing to lose if you choose the wrong and yet I plead with you in the language of the Holy Spirit. God sets before you life and death, blessing and cursing, therefore choose life. Choose life by choosing the Living One. Choose life by repudiating death and sin. I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. He that hath the Son hath Life and he that hath not the Son hath not life. Choose life by choosing the Living One who is the life. And I am earnestly trying to influence you to choose the right way and the right One.

I am trying to influence you Christians who are living casual Christian lives to put away that wickedness and consider your ways and this night start to live a Christian life that will shame the devil and please God and start you on the way to victorious living and fruitful service and holy character. Choose you. You must make the choice. That choice will result in deeds and deeds will result in destiny. This is an honor God's bestowed upon us, that we can choose. Have you chosen? Do you choose? What have you chosen?

And those of you who tonight are halfway in between and you don't know whether to believe or doubt, you don't know whether to surrender or "bull-it" through a little longer, you don't know whether to say yes or no: I am seriously trying to influence you to say yes to God and no to sin. Yes to Jesus, as the song says, and no to the devil. What about it?

You that are tempted, oh so deeply and bitterly tempted and you don't know which way to turn. I'm earnestly trying to get you to turn the way of righteousness and God. Will you do it, tonight? Let's pray.

~A. W. Tozer~

(The End)