Saturday, September 29, 2007


“Conference on spiritual subjects is a most important means of grace. As iron sharpens iron, so does exchange of thoughts with brethren sharpen a believer's soul. It brings down a special blessing on all who make a practice of it. The striking words of Malachi were meant for the Church in every age --‘Then those who feared the Lord spoke often one to another--and the Lord hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for those who feared the Lord, and that thought upon His name. And they shall be mine says the Lord, in that day when I make up my jewels.’ (Mal. 3:16, 17.)

What do we know ourselves of spiritual conversation with other Christians? Perhaps we read our Bibles, and pray in private, and use public means of grace. It is all well, very well. But if we stop short here we neglect a great privilege and have yet much to learn. We ought to ‘consider one another to provoke to love and good works.’ We ought to ‘exhort’ and ‘edify one another.’ (Heb. 10:24; 1 Thess. 5:11.) Have we no time for spiritual conversation? Let us think again. The quantity of time wasted on frivolous, trifling, and unprofitable talk, is fearfully great. Do we find nothing to say on spiritual subjects? Do we feel tongue-tied and speechless on the things of Christ? Surely if this is the case, there must be something wrong within. A heart right in the sight of God will generally find words. ‘Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.’" (Matt. 12:34). From Expository Thoughts on the Gospels on Luke 24 13-20.

We close with another morsel from J.C. Ryle.“Let it be a settled principle in our minds, in reading the Bible, that Christ is the central sun of the whole book. So long as we keep Him in view, we shall never greatly err in our search for spiritual knowledge. Once losing sight of Christ, we shall find the whole Bible dark and full of difficulty. The key of Bible knowledge is Jesus Christ.”(Also from Expository Thoughts on the Gospels on Luke 24 13-20).

Friday, September 21, 2007


"David was a type of Christ in many ways including:
David was a prophet as well as a king; so was our Lord.
David was anointed about the 30th year of his life; so Christ, the son of David, was baptized and anointed at 30.
David in his wars had many poor men follow him such as were in debt; so Jesus Christ had many poor men who followed Him, and became His disciples, who were heavy laden under the burden of sin, called a debt."
Adapted from Preaching From Types and Metaphors by Benjamin Keach, Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids, MI, 1972 A.D. edition. Benjamin Keach was a Baptist Preacher in London who lived from 1640- 1704.This work was originally called Tropologia.

“The devil directs his fiercest batteries against those doctrines in the word, and those graces in the heart, which most exalt God, debase man, and bring men to their lowest subjection to their creator. Such is the doctrine and grace of justifying faith.” Stephen Charnock (1628-1680), The Existence and Attributes of God, Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, MI ,1971 A.D. edition, page 106. edition, page 106.
Read some of his works- free, at

I know I am often looking at the writings of theologians of long ago, but I think it is so necessary in this day of apostasy. If you go into the average Christian bookstore, you will find so little of these classic books of yesteryear. You find a few I know, among so much lightweight, shallow reading. The most popular books in these stores are novels. Then there are the endless trinkets. I ask the clerks sometimes “Why don’t you carry Pink’s books, Spurgeon’s books, J.C. Ryle’s books, Lloyd-Jones’ books, or even R.C. Sproul’s books?” The usual answer, “We can order them, but most people don’t buy them.” That is sad, because if you are going to read anything beside your Bible, it ought to be, at least some of these classics.

Whatever you read, we owe a great debt to Johann Gutenberg (1400-1468). He is credited with inventing movable type, and a printing press that made mass printing easier. His first project was printing a Latin Bible. He saw the significance of unlocking the Bible’s treasures for the common man. He said “Religious truth is captive in a small number of little manuscripts which guard the common treasures, instead of expanding them. Let us break the seal which binds these holy things; let us give wings to truth that it may fly with the Word, no longer prepared at vast expense, but multitudes everlastingly by a machine which never wearies, to every soul which enters life.” More on this fascinating man and his work at the British Librarys site:

Sunday, September 16, 2007


by W.F. Bell.

Mark Dever of Washington, D. C., says that he believes there are ten key factors to have been instrumental in the resurgence of Calvinism. This very list is one I would agree with in the main, as I was personally influenced by Banner of Truth as no other publisher. I personally started purchasing Spurgeon's sermons when Pilgrim Publications started republishing them in 1969, but never really read them until 1972, when God was pleased to awaken me to His sovereignty and the glory of His grace. Here is the list from Dever, taken from and
1. Charles Spurgeon
2. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
3.The Banner of Truth Trust
4. Evangelism Explosion (D. James Kennedy)
5. The battle for inerrancy in key denominations
6. The growth of the PCA (Presbyterian Church in America)
7. J. I. Packer's classic book Knowing God
8. The writings of John MacArthur and R. C. Sproul
9. The ministry of John Piper
10. The rise of secularism and decline of Christian nominalism

Not all may agree with this. I would add A. W. Pink for sure, especially his The Sovereignty of God. Furthermore, some disagree as to what Calvinism really is. Others would say these truths were being preached all along by certain Baptists, Presbyterians, etc. Others say it is all academic, and not of the heart. Still, we must rejoice in this overall "resurgence" of truth in the glorious sovereignty of God, and the exaltation of His grace alone. Indeed, "Christ Is All" (Colossians 3:11).

A further word from Charles Woodruff
I thank W.F. Bell and Mark Dever for sharing this with us. My own awakening to these truths began slightly earlier than W.F.'s, so there was not originally the influence of Piper, Sproul, MacArthur, and other more modern preachers and writers. I rejoice that they have come along to "carry the torch". For us older guys, Spurgeon and Pink were the great influences along with J.I. Packer, and of course, Banner of Truth publications in general.

For me, another deep influence was Sovereign Grace Publishers. I worked for their bookstore in the early 70's and explored a whole new world of grace theology. In fact for the first time I grasped a deeper meaning of the word "grace"; They introduced me to the Puritans, which have been a great influence, especially the "devotional" ones like Thomas Brooks, Richard Sibbes, Thomas Watson, Thomas Manton, and the ones born a little later like Thomas Boston and Matthew Henry.
Thank God for these influences and the resurgence of gospel truth that continues today. May we strive to maintain a biblical balance between Hyper-Calvinism on the one hand, and Arminianism on the other; between legalism on the one hand and antinomianism on the other.

But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them" (Ephesians 2:4-10).

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


"Believe on the LORD Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house" (Acts 16:31).

This gospel for a man with a sword at his throat is the gospel for me. This would suit me if I were dying, and it is all that I need while I am living. I look away from self, and sin, and all idea of personal merit, and I trust the LORD Jesus as the Savior whom God has given. I believe in Him, I rest on Him, I accept Him to be my all in all. LORD, I am saved, and I shall be saved to all eternity, for I believe in Jesus. Blessed be Thy name for this. May I daily prove by my life that I am saved from selfishness, and worldliness, and every form of evil. But those last words about my "house": LORD, I would not run away with half a promise when Thou dost give a whole one. I beseech Thee, save all my family. Save the nearest and dearest. Convert the children and the grandchildren, if I have any. Be gracious to my servants and all who dwell under my roof or work for me. Thou makest this promise to me personally if I believe in the LORD Jesus; I beseech Thee to do as Thou hast said. I would go over in my prayer every day the names of all my brothers and sisters, parents, children, friends, relatives, servants, and give Thee no rest till that word is fulfilled, "and thy house."
Faith's Checkbook

September 12

Monday, September 10, 2007


Psalm 119:97; Proverbs 23:17; Micah 6:8;
Ephesians 5:15; Philippians 4:4


"O how love I thy law! It is my meditation all the day" (Psalm 119:97).
True "meditation" is a daily duty and delight. Without it we are merely playing at being Christians.
"Be thou in the fear of the Lord all the day long" (Proverbs 23:17).
Walking in God's fear means we reverence Him in our demeanor and speech, our words and our thoughts.
"Walk humbly with thy God" (Micah 6:8).
Here is true evidence of our election and calling -- renouncing our selfish pride, looking to Christ Jesus alone.
"Walk circumspectly" (Ephesians 5:15).
Dangers surround the believer on every side, thus the importance of remembering to be cautious daily.
"Rejoice in the Lord always" (Philippians 4:4).
True humility before God and man, coupled with godly fear, will always cause us to rejoice in our Lord Jesus Christ.
Let us daily Read Scripture, Believe Scripture, Honor Scripture.
"Food is not more necessary to the body, than spiritual nourishment is to the soul; and the Word is the appointed means of spiritual nourishment." J. L. Dagg

Saturday, September 8, 2007


"It shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not My people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God" (Hosea 1:10).

Sovereign grace can make strangers into sons, and the LORD here declares His purpose to deal thus with rebels and make them know what He has done. Beloved reader, the LORD has done this in my case; has He done the like for you? Then let us join hands and hearts in praising His adorable name. Some of us were so decidedly ungodly that the LORD's Word most truly said to our conscience and heart, "Ye are not my people." In the house of God and in our own homes, when we read the Bible, this was the voice of God's Spirit in our soul, "Ye are not my people." Truly a sad, condemning voice it was. But now, in the same places, from the same ministry and Scripture, we hear a voice, which saith, "Ye are the sons of the living God." Can we be grateful enough for this? Is it not wonderful? Does it not give us hope for others? Who is beyond the reach of almighty grace? How can we despair of any, since the LORD has wrought so marvelous a change in us?He who has kept this one great promise will keep every other; wherefore, let us go forward with songs of adoration and confidence.
From Faith's Checkbook September 7th

Monday, September 3, 2007


September 03
from Faith's Checkbook
"And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves, O My people, and brought you up out of your graves" (Ezekiel 37:13).

Indeed it must be so: those who receive life from the dead are sure to recognize the hand of the LORD in such a resurrection. This is the greatest and most remarkable of all changes that a man can undergo -- to be brought out of the grave of spiritual death and made to rejoice in the light and liberty of spiritual life. None could work this but the living God, the LORD and giver of life. Ah, me! How well do I remember when I was lying in the valley full of dry bones, as dry as any of them! Blessed was the day when free and sovereign grace sent the man of God to prophesy upon me! Glory be to God for the stirring which that word of faith caused among the dry bones. More blessed still was that heavenly breath from the four winds which made me live! Now know I the quickening Spirit of the ever-living Jehovah, Truly Jehovah is the living God, for He made me live. My new life even in its pinings and sorrowings is clear proof to me that the LORD can kill and make alive. He is the only God. He is all that is great, gracious, and glorious, and my quickened soul adores Him as the great I AM. All glory be unto His sacred name! As long as I live I will praise Him.