A BLAST AGAINST THE (ANA) BAPTISTS!

 

 

“That (Ana)baptists, therefore, in denying baptism to the children of the church does not only deprive them (covenant children) of their rights, but also prevents the grace of God being seen in its riches, since God wills that the offspring of the faithful should be amongst the members of the church even from the womb, yea they manifestly detract from the grace of the New Covenant, and narrow down that of the Old inasmuch as they refuse to extend baptism to infants to whom circumcision, was formerly extended;they weaken the comfort of the church and of faithful parents; they set aside the solemn obligation by which God will have the offspring of His people consecrated to Him from their very infancy, distinguished and separated from the world; they weaken in parents and children the sense of gratitude, and the desire which they should have to perform their obligation to God; they boldly contradict the apostles who declared that water baptism should not be forbidden those to whom the Holy Ghost is given, they wickedly keep back from Christ, infants who He has commanded to be brought unto Him: and lastly they narrow the universal command of Christ which requires that all should be baptized. From all of these things it is clear that the denial of infant baptism is not trifling error, but grievous heresy, in direct opposition to the Word of God and the comfort of the church. This is in harmony with the scripture in the Old Testament Where circumcision was considered of such importance that we read in the scriptures that when Moses failed to circumcise his child because of the objections of his wife God met him in the way in order to kill him.”

Quoted from the commentary of Zacharias Ursinus one of the authors of the Heidelberg Catechism. The Reformation made this judgment on the Anabaptists at the time.

Why millions of years is a lie!

Good article and booklet from Answers in Genesis:

Millions of years??

Seven Reasons Why We Should Not Accept Millions of Years

by Dr. Terry Mortenson on July 17, 2006; last featured March 28, 2016

Also available in Español

Slemish Mount, Ballymena, a volcanic plug that erupted at the time of the flood.

There is an intensifying controversy in the church all over the world regarding the age of the earth. For the first 18 centuries of church history, the almost universal belief of Christians was that God created the world in six literal days, roughly 4,000 years before Christ, and destroyed the world with a global Flood at the time of Noah.

ABOUT 200 YEARS AGO SOME SCIENTISTS DEVELOPED NEW THEORIES OF EARTH HISTORY, WHICH PROPOSED THAT THE EARTH AND UNIVERSE ARE MILLIONS OF YEARS OLD.

Christian leaders have made various attempts to fit the millions of years into the Bible. These include the day-age view, gap theory, local flood view, framework hypothesis, theistic evolution, progressive creation, and so on.

A growing number of Christians (now called young-earth creationists), including many scientists, hold to the traditional view, believing it to be the only view that is truly faithful to Scripture and that fits the scientific evidence far better than the reigning old-earth evolutionary theory.

Many Christians say that the age of the earth is an unimportant and divisive side issue that hinders the proclamation of the gospel. But is that really the case? AiG and many other creationist organizations think not.

In this short article (which can be purchased as a booklet to share with others), we want to introduce you to some of the reasons we think that Christians cannot accept the millions of years, without doing great damage to the church and her witness in the world. We hope that it will help you think more carefully about this subject and will motivate you to dig deeper into the excellent resources recommended at the end, which thoroughly defend the points made here.

  1. The Bible clearly teaches that God created in six literal, 24-hour days a few thousand years ago.

The Hebrew word for day in Genesis 1 is yôm. In the vast majority of its uses in the Old Testament (OT), it means a literal day; and where it doesn’t the context makes this clear.

Similarly, the context of Genesis 1 clearly shows that the days of creation were literal days. First, yôm is defined the first time it is used in the Bible (Genesis 1:4–5) in its two literal senses: the light portion of the light/dark cycle and the whole light/dark cycle. Second, yôm is used with “evening” and “morning.” Everywhere these two words are used in the OT, either together or separately and with or without yôm in the context, they always mean a literal evening or morning of a literal day. Third, yôm is modified with a number: one day, second day, third day, and so on, which everywhere else in the Old Testament indicates literal days. Fourth, yôm is defined literally in Genesis 1:14 in relation to the heavenly bodies.

That these creation days happened only about 6,000 years ago is clear from the genealogies of Genesis 5 and 11 (which give very detailed chronological information, unlike the clearly abbreviated genealogy in Matthew 1) and other chronological information in the Bible.

  1. Exodus 20:11blocks all attempts to fit millions of years into Genesis 1.

This verse gives the reason for God’s command to Israel to work six days and then take a Sabbath rest. Yôm is used in both parts of the commandment. If God meant that the Jews were to work six days because He created over six long periods of time, He could have said that using one of three indefinite Hebrew time words. He chose the only word that means a literal day and the Jews understood it literally (until the idea of million of years developed in the early 19th century). For this reason, the day-age view or framework hypothesis must be rejected. The gap theory or any other attempt to put millions of years before the six days are also false, because God says that in six days He made the heaven and the earth and the sea and all that is in them. So He made everything in those six literal days and nothing before the first day.

  1. Noah’s Flood washes away millions of years.

The evidence in Genesis 6–9 for a global catastrophic flood is overwhelming. For example, the Flood was intended to destroy not only all sinful people but also all land animals and birds and the surface of the earth, which only a global flood could accomplish. The Ark’s purpose was to save two of every kind of land animal and bird to repopulate the earth after the flood. The Ark was totally unnecessary, if the Flood was local. People, animals, and birds could have migrated out of the flood zone before it occurred, or the zone could have been populated from creatures outside the area after the Flood. The catastrophic nature is seen in the nonstop rain for at least 40 days, which would have produced massive erosion, mud slides, hurricanes, and so on. The Hebrew words translated “the fountains of the great deep burst open” (Genesis 7:11) clearly point to tectonic rupturing of the earth’s surface in many places for 150 days, resulting in volcanoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis. Noah’s Flood would produce exactly the kind of complex geological record we see today worldwide: thousands of feet of sediments clearly deposited by water and later hardened into rock and containing billions of fossils. If the year-long Flood is responsible for most of the rock layers and fossils, then those rocks and fossils cannot represent the history of the earth over millions of years, as evolutionists claim.

  1. Jesus was a young-earth creationist.

Jesus consistently treated the miracle accounts of the Old Testament as straightforward, truthful, historical accounts (e.g., creation of Adam, Noah and the Flood, Lot and his wife in Sodom, Moses and the manna, and Jonah in the fish). He continually affirmed the authority of Scripture over men’s ideas and traditions (Matthew 15:1–9). In Mark 10:6 we have the clearest (but not the only) statement showing that Jesus was a young-earth creationist. He states that Adam and Eve were at the beginning of creation, not billions of years after the beginning, as would be the case if the universe was really billions of years old. So, if Jesus was a young-earth creationist, then how can His faithful followers have any other view?

  1. Belief in millions of years undermines the Bible’s teaching on death and on the character of God.

Genesis 1 says six times that God called the creation “good,” and when He finished creation on Day Six He called everything “very good.” Man and animals and birds were originally vegetarian (Genesis 1:29–30, plants are not “living creatures,” as people and animals are, according Scripture). But Adam and Eve sinned, resulting in the judgment of God on the whole creation. Instantly Adam and Eve died spiritually, and after God’s curse they began to die physically. The serpent and Eve were changed physically and the ground itself was cursed (Genesis 3:14–19). The whole creation now groans in bondage to corruption, waiting for the final redemption of Christians (Rom. 8:19–25) when we will see the restoration of all things (Acts 3:21Col. 1:20) to a state similar to the pre-Fall world, when there will be no more carnivore behavior (Isaiah 11:6–9) and no disease, suffering, or death (Revelation 21:3–5) because there will be no more Curse (Revelation 22:3). To accept millions of years of animal death before the creation and Fall of man contradicts and destroys the Bible’s teaching on death and the full redemptive work of Christ. It also makes God into a bumbling, cruel creator who uses (or can’t prevent) disease, natural disasters, and extinctions to mar His creative work, without any moral cause, but calls it all “very good.”

  1. The idea of millions of years did not come from the scientific facts.

It was developed by deistic and atheistic geologists in the late 18th and early 19th century. These men used anti-biblical philosophical and religious assumptions to interpret the geological observations in a way that plainly contradicted the biblical account of Creation, the Flood, and the age of the earth. Most church leaders and scholars quickly compromised using the gap theory, day-age view, local flood view, and so on. to try to fit “deep time” into the Bible. But they did not understand the geological arguments, nor did they defend their views by careful Bible study. The “deep time” idea flows out of naturalistic assumptions, not scientific observations.

  1. Radiometric dating methods do not prove millions of years.

Prominent young-earth creation scientists

There are thousands of PhD and MS scientists around the world (and the number keeps growing) who believe the earth is only about 6,000 years old, as the Bible teaches. It is simply false to say that creation scientists do not have reputable degrees, do not do real scientific research and do not publish in the peer-reviewed scientific journals. Visit our creation scientist section to read about a few of them, past and present.

Radiometric dating was not developed until the early 20th century, by which time the whole world had already accepted the millions of years. For many years creation scientists have cited many examples in the published scientific literature of these dating methods clearly giving erroneous dates (e.g., a date of millions of years for lava flows that occurred in the past few hundred years or even decades). In recent years creationists in the “RATE project” have done experimental, theoretical and field research to uncover more such evidence (e.g., diamonds and coal, which the evolutionists say are millions of years old, were dated by carbon-14 to be only thousands of years old) and to show that decay rates were orders of magnitude faster in the past, which shrinks the millions of years dates to thousands of years, confirming the Bible.

Conclusion

These are just some of the reasons why we believe that the Bible is giving us the true history of the creation. God’s Word must be the final authority on all matters about which it speaks: not just the moral and spiritual matters, but also its teachings that bear on history, archeology, and science. Forever thy word is written in heaven and is true (JK).

What is at stake here is the authority of Scripture, the character of God, the doctrine of death, and the very foundation of the gospel. If the early chapters of Genesis are not true literal history, then faith in the rest of the Bible is undermined, including its teaching about salvation and morality. I urge you to examine carefully the resources at the bottom of this article. The health of the church, the effectiveness of her mission to a lost world and the glory of God are at stake.

This article is available in an attractive booklet to share with Christian friends, your pastor, or anyone who is compromised or unsure about the age of the earth and who is not willing (or sufficiently motivated to take the time) to read a book or watch an hour-long DVD that would change their thinking. This booklet could be a stepping-stone to encourage them to study this matter further. Together, let’s keep calling Christians—and especially Christian leaders—back to the truth of Genesis.

 

Mary-Our Lady?

An interesting read. Rev. Martyn McGeown responds to a letter he received from a Catholic correspondent in Ireland …

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I got an e-mail from a residents’ group in the Limerick area. It began, “As you are devoted to Our Lady, we are looking for your support.”

My response was as follows:

Thank you for your e-mail. I was surprised to receive it. You must not have read our website, from which, I assume, you got my e-mail address, because you make the false statement, “You are devoted to Our Lady.”

I will not be able to support you for one reason: the words “Our Lady.” By these words, you mean, I assume, Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ according to the flesh.

I am not devoted to Mary, and nor should you be, because I am devoted to the Lord Jesus Christ. Mary did have an important position in that she was “blessed among [not “above”] women” to be chosen to be the earthly mother of Jesus, but her greatest blessedness was that she, like all of God’s people, received the forgiveness of her sins. “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.”

The title you give to Mary, “Our Lady,” is a title of honour and authority. Our Lady is the female equivalent of “Our Lord.” Mary has no such honour or authority. We may not pray to her, rely on her to be a mediator, or an intercessor, or an advocate for us. When we do, we dishonour Jesus Christ, because He alone is Lord, Mediator, Intercessor and Advocate.

Consider that Jesus Christ is the Saviour, not Mary. Jesus Christ is the only Mediator between God and men (I Tim. 2:5). Jesus Christ intercedes for His people for whom He died on the cross, not Mary (Rom. 8:34). When we sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the Righteous, not Mary (I John 2:1-2).

Mary cannot help us. She needed a Saviour to save her from her sins. She sang, “My soul doth magnify the Lord and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour” (Luke 1:46-47). Mary cannot hear our prayers in heaven. How could a mere woman, a creature, hear the millions of prayers offered to her, and then have the power to answer each of those prayers? But Jesus hears prayers, because He is the Eternal Son of God. No-one, certainly not Mary,is closer to the Father than Jesus. And He has grounds for asking God to bless His people because He died on the cross to cover their sins and to give them eternal life. Mary did not die on the cross and therefore has no grounds of her own to ask anything.

In fact, the Bible makes it clear that Jesus never honoured Mary in the way you suggest we should do. On one occasion, a woman in the crowd in misguided enthusiasm cried out, “Blessed is the womb that bare thee” (Luke 11:27) but Jesus corrected her, not by honouring Mary, or exalting her above others, but by saying, “Yea, rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God and keep it (v. 28). Again, Jesus distanced Himself from His mother, Mary, when she became a hindrance to His ministry. In John 2:4 He said to her, “Woman, what have I to do with thee? Mine hour is not yet come.” He was not being rude, but He was putting her in her place. In fact, Jesus never addressed Mary with the word, “Mother,” and certainly never called her “Lady.” Indeed, He again distanced Himself from any special relationship to Mary in Matthew 12. When His mother and brethren were standing outside wanting to speak to Him, He said, “Who is my mother and who are my brethren?” and then He said, “Whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother and sister and mother” (vv. 47-50).

Mary was the humble handmaiden of the Lord, and she would be horrified if she knew what was being done in her name, that prayers are offered, candles are burned, masses are said and devotion is given to her. What a beautiful example Mary is of humble, childlike faith and obedience to God. Please do not dishonour her by calling her “Our Lady.”

If the centrepiece of your Garden of Hope is a mural of Mary, whom you call “Our Lady of Hope,” I cannot support you, for that is idolatry. I Timothy 1:1 says this, “Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the commandment of God our Saviour, and Lord Jesus Christ, which is our hope.” Jesus Christ is my hope, not Mary.

Look to Christ, not Mary. Seek salvation and forgiveness of sins in Jesus Christ, not Mary. He alone is Lord and to Him every knee will bow and every tongue with confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God that Father (Phil. 2:10-11).

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Could Christ have sinned?

Recently I came across a U tube video of two prominent theologians namely Sinclair B. Ferguson and R.C. Sproul answering theological quesions one of which was ” Jesus peccable or impeccable?” i.e. could Jesus have sinned?  They gave the wrong answer, suggesting that to be fully human he had to have a nature like ours capable of sinning. SEE HERE (57 mins).

But what saith the Scriptures?

He came according to Romans 8:3 “in the likeness of human flesh” , not in sinful flesh. He did not assume the original human nature as Adam did but the flesh and blood of the children (weak) and subject to suffering and death.He is called “The holy child Jesus” and “holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners” (Acts 4:27, Hebrews 7:26). He had no original sin or guilt inherited from Adam, his nature was without corruption,  there was no inbuilt depravity capable of falling into sin under the tempter and no innate lust.. There was not the slightest possibility that Christ should fall into sin. The first Adam was lapsible, the last Adam was not. Why? Because God’s decree included that he would perfect all things and be made perfect as the Captain of our salvation. This does not in any way minimise or reduce the reality of his temptations throughout his life which he resisted unto blood. He, by the Holy Spirit, as fully human, resisted all temptation, notwithstanding the fact that he was also divine, and in his divinity could not be tempted so as to sin.”  Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:” (I Peter 2:22).

From Herman Hoeksema’s Reformed Dogmatics.

HOPE

HOPE OUR ANCHOR

A short but fairly comprehensive word study:

  • The godless majority of people in this world are without hope (Eph.2:12, I Thess.4:13) and even believers for a time may feel hopeless (Job 7:6, 19:10) but Job saw in the illustration of a tree cut down, that for him “hope springs eternal!” (Job 14:7). He saw that God purposely destroys the false hopes of the godless (Job 14:19, 27:8, 31:24-28). Job also knew about the three great spiritual graces, faith, hope and love (I Cor.13:13) and that hope ceases to exist after death (Job 17:15). Why? Because hope means the certain expectation of future good at the hands of God and it only pertains to this life. Its source is God himself (Rom.15:13, II Thess.2:16) and it is ours as we believe his word (Psalm 119:81, 114, 130:5). Specifically hope concerns our resurrection from the dead and our glorification in the new heavens and earth (Psalm 16:9, Prov.14:32, Acts 24:15, I Cor.15:19, Col.1:5,27, Titus 1:2) it, like faith, believes in something unseen (Rom.8:24,25). This hope come to fruition at the return of Christ (Titus 2:13). The basis for this hope is our regeneration or the dwelling of Christ in us and us in him (I Tim.1:1, I Peter 1:3). Since he has gone before us, we are bound to follow (Heb. 6:18-20).
  • Abraham, the archetypical Old Testament saint and father of us all, exhibited hope in God’s covenant promise (Rom.4:18).
  • King David speaks much of his hope and often prophetically speaks for Christ his Lord (Psalm 16:9, Acts 2:26, Psalms 39:7, 22:9, 71:5, 119:116, 146:5), his was  a hope he even had as an infant showing how even the very young can be regenerate. He exhorts us and Israel to have hope (Psalms 42:5,11, 43:5, 130:7. 131:3).
  • Jeremiah also confessed his hope (Jer.17:7,17) and that of the people of Israel (Jer.14:8, 17:13) as did Joel (Joel 3:16) and even Paul (Acts 28:20).
  • Paul probably writes more about it than anyone and he rejoiced in it (Rom.5:2, 8:24, 12:12, 15:4, Eph.1:18, 4:4) and also spoke of his hope in fellow believers (II Cor.1:7, I Thess.2:19).
  • Our hope is a witness (I Peter 3:15) and a great motivation to lead a holy life (I John 3:3), it is something we must, and will, by God’s grace, maintain to the end of our lives (I Peter 1:13). Hope is a vital helmet of defence against Satan’s temptations to fear and have  foreboding about our future (I Thess.5:8). As with all of our salvation, our hope is in the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Pursuit of Glory (3)

PURPOSE

Without purpose life is meaningless. We all want our lives to count. We were made to work (Gen.2:15). Work responsibilities give us purpose. We work for the glory of God (Col.3:23). Purpose in the approval of others?  Purpose in getting a following on social media? Purpose in possessing a lot? (Luke 12:15).These perish. Self glory is no glory. Glory is not in self-worth.

Doing whatever you do to the glory of God is what counts. God’s  approval is what counts! To know God is something to glory in (Jer,9:23,24). Every good work (done for God’s glory, in faith and obedience to his word) will be rewarded. (Rev.14:13). What we leave in this life will be given back in the next (Matthew 19:29, Mal.3:16, Matthew 26:7,13). Everything has eternal value when it is carried out for the glory of God, we lay up treasure in heaven. This brings purpose. Purpose comes from living for God and eternity.

The Pursuit of Glory (1)

 

Glory

This excellent little paperback by Jeff Johnson published by Reformed Heritage Books 2018 costing less than £6 on line, is excellent because it examines our motives-why we do what we do. In other words it helps answer David’s prayer in Psalm 139-“SEARCH ME AND KNOW MY THOUGHTS AND LEAD ME IN THE WAY EVERLASTING”. It is a modern day equivalent of the book of Ecclesiastes setting forth what all human hearts long for, and proving that not in anything created but in the Creator is glory and fulfillment to be found. Its subtitle is “Finding satisfaction in Christ alone.”  I purpose to summarize each chapter in a series of blogs.  He sees our longings being for glory, happiness, peace, purpose, freedom, companionship, truth, holiness and life eternal. The glory we seek is infinite and eternal and is found only in God (II Cor.4:17). Only he is of infinite value, his glory is the sum of all he is. This glory completely and forever satisfies the three persons of the trinity (John 17:5). We are miserable because we aspire after glory in the wrong things. There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.(Proverbs 16:25). “The biblical contrast to glory is vanity…the praise of people and the glory of this world are passing away.” (I John 2:17, Eccl.1:2). What is your glory?Or to put it another way, what do you worship? Augustine said, ” Thou hast made us for thyself and our hearts are restless, until they find rest in thee.” In actual fact what we as believers long for, is the restoration of the image of God in us accompanied by seeing and living with God-this desire will be ultimately fulfilled. (I John 3:2). Because Christ is the image of God all our goals are found in him. The sinful world foolishly follows Satan in the perverse notion that following his suggestions and following our lusts will fulfil us-it is a lie! ( I John 2:15-17, John 8:44).

Accounting

This is the short speech gave at my church AGM earlier this week:

CPRC AGM June 12th 2019

Accounting


Last year, you may remember, I spoke regarding a word that has meaning in accounting as well as the spiritual realm and that word was “reconciliation”. This year the word is “account” itself. Accounts make me think of the adjective accountable and accountability, reckoning, calculating etc. Romans 14:12 states, “Every one of us shall give account of himself to God” and that on the last day. We will have to account of our stewardship, faithfulness, use of opportunities and it will literally be a “day of reckoning”.
For Christ the day of reckoning was at the cross where he was reckoned with the transgressors (Luke 22:37 quoting Isaiah 53:12) literally “numbered”.
The word account or reckon occurs forty times in the New Testament actually LOGOZOMI in Greek which means take an inventory, count, compute or calculate and because Christ was reckoned with the transgressors we are reckoned as righteous by imputation or credit (same word again) of his perfect righteousness (II Cor.5:19). The great chapter on imputation is Romans 4 especially verses 10 and 11 (also Gal.3:6) regarding Abraham whose imputed righteousness means his justification (by faith). However reckon is also used in relation to sanctification as Romans 6:11 teaches we are to “reckon ourselves dead to sin”-this is the fact that we are no longer enslaved by sin and are freed to live righteously. As a result of our antithetical life we will be persecuted “accounted as sheep to the slaughter” (Rom.8:36).
So there we have some thoughts of accounting/reckoning/imputing in the Bible. The one common factor that unites the work of financial accounting and Biblical reckoning is that they are both exact sciences. They ought to be correct, without mistake and balance out and in God’s economy they do because he is infallible as an accountant, knowing the end from the beginning (having decreed everything) whose work is detailed, accurate and totally dependable, unlike this fallible treasurer giving his accounts!

Regeneration v conversion.

 

 

“Conversion, though it may seem, in some respects, to fall in with regeneration and the effectual calling, yet may be distinguished from them both. Regeneration is the sole act of God; conversion consists both of God’s act upon men, in turning them, and of acts done by men under the influence of converting grace; they turn, being turned. Regeneration is the motion of God towards and upon the heart of a sinner; conversion is the motion of a sinner towards God, as one (Charnock) expresses it. In regeneration men are wholly passive, as they also are in the first moment of conversion; but by it become active: it is therefore sometimes expressed passively; ‘you are returned,’ or converted (1 Peter 2:25), and sometimes actively; ‘a great number believed and turned to the Lord’ (Acts 11:21)…. The effectual calling is the call of men out of darkness to light; and conversion answers to that call, and is the actual ‘turning’ of men from the one to the other; so that, with propriety, conversion may be considered as distinct from regeneration and the effectual calling.” ~

John Gill, A Body of Doctrinal Divinity, Book 6, Chapter 13.

Were miracles all signs?

Can we prove that Christ’s (and the apostles’) miracles had spiritual significance?

Clearly they were all God’s work authenticating his messengers.
Everything Christ and the apostles did was to further the kingdom of God which is spiritual.
Christ came to redeem men and creation.
Everything in creation points to spiritual reality e.g. the sun-the Son, grass and food-the word of God, water and fire-the Holy Spirit, the blue sky-heaven, trees-Christian life etc.
Christ taught in parables using earthly things to teach spiritual truth.
Christ equates physical and spiritual healing e.g. blindness (John 9) where he speaks of physical and spiritual blindness, paralysis (Matt.9)-see below*, death (John 5 and 11) where resurrection of the soul by Christ in this life is equated with physical resurrection of the dead. These miracles were all signs signifying deeper reality. *Christ both healed a man and said his sins were forgiven simultaneously, both healings being God’s prerogative and one signifying the other.
Healing and wholeness are the same Greek word (SOZO- I Peter 2:24).
The huge catch of fish in John 21 pictures the apostles being used to catch men.