Communion with God (44)

The duties of the saints in this communion with Christ.

The saints continually eye the Lord Jesus as the great Joseph, who has charge of all the granaries of the kingdom of heaven committed to him. He is the one in whom it pleased the Father to gather all things under one head, Eph. 1:10, so that from him all things might be dispensed to the saints. All treasures, all fullness, and the Spirit without measure are in him. And they eye this fullness, in reference to their condition, in these three particulars:

(1.) In the blood sacrifice not only of atonement as offered, but also of purification as poured out. “A fountain for sin and for uncleanness,” Zech. 13:1; that is, it washes them and takes them away. The saints see that they are still greatly defiled.  Upon this discovery, they cry with shame, within themselves, “Unclean, unclean,” unclean in their natures, unclean in their persons, unclean in their lives;  How to remove this defilement? We look first to the purifying virtue of the blood of Christ, which is able to cleanse them from all their sins, 1 John 1:7. It is the spring from which flows all the purifying virtue that will take away all their spots and stains, “make them holy and without blemish, and in the end present them glorious to himself,” Eph. 5:26, 27.

(2.) They eye the blood of Christ as the blood of sprinkling. When they come to “Jesus, the mediator of the new covenant,” they come to the “blood of sprinkling,” Heb. 12:24.  Not only is there  a “shedding of blood” for the remission of sin, Heb. 9:22, but there is also  a “sprinkling of blood,” for the actual purification. David,  sensing the pollution of sin, prays that he may be “purged with hyssop,” Psalm 51:7. It is evident that this specifically referred to the uncleanness and defilement of sin. . The cleansing virtue of the blood of Christ lies in the promises, just as the blood of sacrifices lies in the hyssop. “Therefore, having these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God,” 2 Cor. 7:1. This, then, is what the saints do: they eye the blood of Christ as it is found in the promise, ready to spray out upon the soul to purify it.

(3.) The saints look upon Christ as the only dispenser of the Spirit, and the source of all grace of sanctification and holiness. They consider that, by his intercession, it is granted to him to make all the fruits of his purchase effective, to sanctify, purify, and make glorious in holiness, his whole people. They know that this is actually to be accomplished by the Spirit, according to the innumerable promises given to that end. He is to sprinkle that blood upon their souls. He is to create the holiness in them that they long for. He is to be a well of water in them, springing up to everlasting life. In this state, they look to Jesus. Faith fixes itself here, expecting him to give out the Spirit for all these ends and purposes. They mix the promises with faith, and so they become actual partakers of all this grace. This is their way. This is their communion with Christ.

[1.] the Spirit of holiness to dwell in them.

[2.] a habit of holiness to be infused in them (habitual grace).

[3.] actual assistance to work out all their duties (actual grace);

If these continue to be lacking, they can never, with all their might, power, and endeavours, perform a single act of holiness before the Lord. They know that they are insufficient in themselves. Without Christ, they can do nothing.

This is the way, the only way, to obtain full and effectual manifestations of the Spirit’s indwelling. This is the only way to have our hearts purified, our consciences purged, our sins mortified, and our graces increased. This is the way our souls are made humble, holy, zealous, believing, and Christ-like. This is the only way to make our lives fruitful, and our deaths comfortable. Let us abide in this, absorbing the stain of Christ by faith, being conformed to him to the extent allotted to us in this world, so that when we see him as he is, we may be like him.
Adapted from John Owen.


Calvin on the Wonder of the Psalms

The most recent British Reformed Journal carried an article entitled “Calvin on the wonder of the Psalms ” by Rev. Angus Stewart from which I have taken the following quotes:

  • “In a word, whatever may serve to encourage us when we are about to pray to God is taught us in this book”. The believer will recognise the truth of these words on the vital connection between the Psalms (read and sung) and fervent prayer.
  • Thus singing the prayers of the Psalms stirs us up to further praying and praising.
  • In evangelical churches, uninspired hymns are far more frequently sung than the 150 Psalms and Psalm singing is often derided as “dead,” as if the Spirit of Christ’s inspired words are not “spirit” and “life” (John 6:63)!

  • Calvinists were convinced that they could legitimately appropriate the psalms to themselves … The psalms were their (and should be our–JK) songs which they sang as the elect people of God in a covenant relationship with Him (W. Stanford Reid)

  • Next time you feel disinclined to pray….read or sing a Psalm!
  • Get the BRJ



Ready to Grow in the Fear of God

Who would not fear thee, O King of nations? for to thee doth it appertain: forasmuch as among all the wise men of the nations, and in all their kingdoms, there is none like unto thee. Jeremiah 10:7

Young Calvinists

We must come to the worship service tomorrow ready to grow in the fear of God. Why? This is the reason: When we have the knowledge of who God really is and why we must fear Him, all of our other fears and concerns will be allayed. When we understand how great our God is, we will earnestly desire to praise and reverence Him at all times. David understood this: “O fear the LORD, ye His saints: for there is no want to them that fear Him. The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing. Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the LORD” (Psalm 34:9-11).

What is the fear of the Lord? Let’s take a look at how the Bible defines it.

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of…

View original post 467 more words


Cancerous Sin

This indeed the attitude we should have.

Young Calvinists


Such a small, simple word, and yet it has the ability to strike fear in our hearts the instant we hear it. The dreaded news of it halts our lives in a moment, turns our world upside down. It often comes as a death sentence, taking family members, close friends, and loved ones. It is accompanied by pain, tears, sorrow, and often death.


Does this word have the same effect on us? When we hear it, think about it, and see it in our lives, do we flee from it as urgently as we do from terminal illnesses such as cancer? Cancer can take our physical lives, but that’s where its power reaches its limit. Sin’s devastating effects penetrate much deeper than the physical. It eats away at and destroys the soul. It pulls us away from the sole source of everlasting life and results in spiritual death…

View original post 412 more words


Making created things our god!

Young Calvinists

God has blessed his people with many gifts, earthly and spiritually. So many gifts, that we have come to take many of them for granted.

And we expect them.

Nice homes, well paying jobs in a good location, a large circle of friends, the man/woman of our dreams, children, a perfect family. These are all things that we view as the normal things in life. Normal things that “everyone has.” But the thing is, we don’t all have them. And when we don’t have them, we become upset… even angry! “I need these!” we say. “When will you give them to me?”

We expect them from the Lord and we spend our lives waiting. Waiting for the financial break through, waiting for the group of friends to accept you, or waiting for the man to walk into your life and sweep you off your feet. We think about it throughout…

View original post 228 more words

The Heart of a Servant in the Church

Very challenging article. Anytime our motives are scrutinised it calls for some soul-searching!

Young Calvinists

“He that blesseth his friend with a loud voice, rising early in the morning, it shall be counted a curse to him.”  (Proverbs 27:14).

The communion of the saints is a wonderful thing. Feeling the care and spiritual encouragement of one’s church family, especially in times of grief or spiritual struggle, is a great blessing and comfort to the Child of God. God did not mean for us to walk this pilgrimage alone. As it is written in Ecclesiastes 4:10, “woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up.” The unity of the body of Christ is a good and beautiful thing.

However, we must search our hearts so that our good deeds towards our brothers and sisters don’t become a source of pride on our own part. In Proverbs 27, Solomon writes of a man who wakes up early…

View original post 318 more words

James 5:19-20


James 5:19-20 and resumé of book

The Conversion of the Sinner

  1. Ultimately the truth is Christ (John 14:6) but in terms that we can see and understand it is the Scriptures (Ps.119:128,142).
  2. To err from the truth is to believe falsehood and/or teach it which then affects the way you live. Unbelief, deception and wrong behaviour are all sinful. Denominations that err from the truth usually apostatise. The necessity is knowing the truth AND loving it (II Thess.2:10-11).
  3. To convert means to come to confess sin or falsehood, repent from it and re-consecrate oneself to God. Peter is an example (Luke 22:32) and David (Ps.51).
  4. Although God must work in the heart, we may be the means whereby a sinner is converted. It is severally illustrated in terms of eyes, ears and mind. The eyes must be opened (John 3:3) and the ears (Matt.13:15, Mark 4:12, John 12:40 and Acts 28:27) to hear Christ’s voice and the heart needs to understand. The word is also the instrument (Ps.19:7). This is true at initial conversion and subsequent on-going conversion.
  5. The death of which James writes is that of backsliding and ultimately, if unrepentant, eternal death in apostasy.
  6. To hide a multitude of sins is to have them covered by the blood of Christ when they are confessed and forsaken (I John 1:9, Ps.103:12, Ps.32:1). God declares them buried in the deepest sea and no longer remembered.

Key themes of the book of James

  • Affliction through trial and temptation to which we are to respond by rejoicing and prayer.
  • Fleeting nature of riches and not respecting persons.
  • Control of the tongue.
  • Living faith is shown by works.
  • Prayer encouraged and the restoration of the backslider.

Divisions of book

1:1-8 Greetings and exhortation to rejoice in trials knowing they work for good and that God will grant wisdom.

1:9-16 Riches fade. The source of temptation.

1:17-27 Control your anger. Obey the word.

2:1-9 Don’t respect persons.

2:10-26 Your faith works to show you are justified.

3:1-18 Teachers judged more strictly. Control tongue. Exhibition of godly wisdom.

4:1-17 Against lust and pride and boasting.

5:1-9 Against riches and injustice.

5:10-18 Exhortation to endure, no rash swearing, need to pray with examples.

5:19-20 Need to restore backslider.

Next BS (DV) March 25th to look at first chapter of “War of Words” by Paul David Tripp (on e bay £10 incl. p&p)


See also: War of Words


The Image of God and Human Dignity

Key issue in the light of many organisations who hold an erroneous view e.g. Christian Institute, Christian Concern and I would guess the Banner of Truth and all who believe in common grace.

Young Calvinists

Since this month is black history month and since I’m one of the rare African American voices in the PRCA, I figured it’d be fitting to speak on (mostly critique) an article titled “The Image of God and the African American Experience,”  which you can read here:

When I first saw the title of this article I got a bit excited, it was around the time of the Mike Brown shooting when debates of race where constant and honestly a bit (lot) annoying, and I was hoping this would help bring some theological sanity to the situation. The fact that it was on the image of God also excited me since it’s one of my favorite theological subjects to ponder. Sadly, I was left a tad disappointed, because the image of God theology that was presented in this was one that I’m not too fond of. It follows a…

View original post 790 more words

Issues of uncleanness. New Testament light.

Mark 5:25-34.


The woman with the issue of blood twelve years spent all her savings but remained ill and unclean. She was probably wrongly ashamed of her condition hence her attempted secrecy in coming up behind Christ whom she had heard was a miraculous healer and she believed was the promised Messiah. Once healed instantly and completely, which characterised all of Christ’s and apostolic healing

(c.f. Charismatic and Pentecostal claims today), she came with fear and trembling because she had been exposed publicly, but also as a right response to the omnipotent and omniscient Lord whose garment she had but touched in faith. She was saved as we can see from her faith, Christ’s pronouncement of peace (v34-the fruit of justification) and his calling her daughter, a term of adoption into God’s family.

Mark 1:40-45. Leper healed and told to go and see priest as Levitical law prescribed


Mark 7:1-5. The Pharisees had added their traditional laws which included washing (baptism!) of furniture-nothing ceremonially unclean here.

Heb. 13:4. Normal marital sexual intercourse is clean, and always was!

Jude 4-8. Ungodly antinomian teachers who were sodomites are called filthy dreamers (unclean!)

Jude 23. Open unashamed sin is likened to ceremonial uncleanness (garment spotted by the flesh-Lev.15) which could affect others, even the witness speaking to the sinner (v22).


New Testament Considerations of Food.

New Testament considerations of food.


Sung Psalm 24:1-6. Note the earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof.

Read Romans 14

The subject of this chapter is Christian liberty specifically in relation to food and days.

The weak in conscience avoid eating meat and our aim in the church ought to be to strengthen them so that the enter into more liberty but till then the strong believer must accept them with charity. We do nothing in isolation as believers (vv7-8) but everything impacts on our Christian family in the church and in relation to God. We must not cause stumbling (v13). Paul KNEW that all foods were pure from the Psalms, from Peter’s account of his vision and from the words of Christ in the gospels (v20).

I Cor. 8 similarly is on Christian liberty but this time in relation to food offered to idols which was an offence to weak consciences.