“Much of the evangelical preaching with which I am familiar inspires neither a terror of God’s righteousness nor praise for the depths of God’s grace in His gift of righteousness.” – Dr. Michael Horton
“First, we bid a man to begin by examining himself, and this not in a superficial and perfunctory manner, but to cite his conscience before the tribunal of God, and when sufficiently convinced of his iniquity, to reflect on the strictness of the sentence pronounced on all sinners. This confounded and amazed at his misery, he is prostrated and humbled before God; and, casting away all self-confidence, groans as if given up to final perdition. Then we must show that the only haven of safety is in the mercy of God, as manifested in Christ, in whom every part of our salvation is complete. As all mankind are, in the sight of God, lost sinners, we hold that Christ is their only righteousness, since, by His obedience, He has wiped off our transgressions; by His sacrifice, appeased the divine anger.” – John Calvin
“We shall all do well to remember the charge: ‘Forsake not the assembling of yourselves together, as the manner of some is.’ (Heb. 10:25). Never to be absent from God’s house on Sundays, without good reason – never to miss the Lord’s Supper when administered in our own congregation – never to let our place be empty when means of grace are going on, this is one way to be a growing and prosperous Christian.
The very sermon that we needlessly miss, may contain a precious word in season for our souls. The very assembly for prayer and praise from which we stay away, may be the very gathering that would have cheered, established, and revived our hearts. We know very little how dependent our spiritual health is on little, regular, habitual helps, and how much we suffer if we miss our medicine.” – J.C. Ryle
“…the findings of modern science are confirming the biblical material that complexity and intelligence are basic building blocks in the universe. Professor Michael Behe has shown that Darwin did not have the tools to observe what we can observe today on the biochemical level, and what we do observe establishes that the fundamental tenets of Darwinian evolution (i.e., random mutations over long periods of time) are insufficient to generate even the ‘simple’ complexity seen in the most basic life forms.” – Craig A. Parton
“Pastors today face a tremendous amount of pressure to do everything but preach the Word. Church growth experts tell them they must address people’s ‘felt needs.’ They are encouraged to be storytellers, comedians, psychologists, and motivational speakers. They are warned to steer clear of topics that people find unpleasant. Many have given up biblical preaching in favor of devotional homilies designed to make people feel good. Some have even replaced preaching with drama and other forms of staged entertainment. But the pastor whose passion is biblical has only one option: ‘Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction’ (2 Timothy 4:2).” – John MacArthur
The proud says: Who is God that I should consider Him?
The humble says: Who is God that He should consider me?
“The first thing the sinner needs is life. He cannot ask for life, for he is dead. God gives him life, and he proves that he has it by believing the gospel. Quickening is the first step. It is the first thing that happens. I do not ask to be quickened. If I asked to be quickened I would not need to be quickened. I would already have life.” – Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (Ephesians – God’s Way Of Reconciliation)
“I cannot agree with those who say that they have ‘new truth’ to teach. The two words seem to me to contradict each other; that which is new is not true. It is the old that is true, for truth is as old as God.” – C. H. Spurgeon
“The pastor ought to have two voices: one, for gathering the sheep; and another, for warding off and driving away wolves and thieves. The Scripture supplies him with the means of doing both.” – John Calvin
“Thank God for the bucket orchid, a great example of our Intelligent Biblical Designer. The surface of the orchid’s petal is slimy, causing bees to slip & fall into the bucket of the flower where the only way of escape is thru a tunnel that leads outside. But, after entering the tunnel, the walls contract & hold the bee while the plant glues a pollen sack to its back. Once the glue dries, the bee is released & when it flies to another bucket orchid, the process is repeated (it’s probably thinking, De Ja Vu, didn’t I just go thru this?) but this time a hook removes the pollen sack, completing the pollination process. Wow! Have a blessed Thanksgiving Day & put your faith in our Intelligent Biblical Designer.” – Russ Miller
“Trials are God’s unannounced exams to see how we are doing in the school of faith.
Justification and sanctification are inseparably bound together. Entering through the narrow gate can only lead down the narrow path.
To those who preach: Either put some fire into your sermons or put your sermons into the fire.
The cost of discipleship is never marked down, never discounted, never cheapened. Following Christ always requires the high price of being a living sacrifice.” – Steve Lawson
“Forgiveness does not mean one forgets (as in, has the ability to remember no more) the offense, but that is spite of the memory, one erases the debt.” – Voddie Baucham
“I should be surprised to see an Agnostic lay down his life for the defence of nothing.” – Charles Spurgeon
“From every little village in England—it does not matter where it is—there is sure to be a road to London. Though there may not be a road to certain other places, there is certain to be a road to London. Now, from every text in the Bible there is a road to Jesus Christ…” – Charles Spurgeon (How to Read the Bible)
“Up with you, men and Christians! Publish Christ again. The only way to put this false fire out is with the old fire of the gospel; men fear that fire. Put down the new heresy with the old orthodoxy. Bring out Christ crucified. Cry again, with Luther’s earnestness, ‘Believe and live!’ Cry again, with Calvinistic determination, ‘Salvation is all of grace, of grace alone, through faith in Jesus Christ.’ I would to God that we might all preach thus. If we had but all our church-members resolved to testify the gospel of the grace of God, then should we see men hearing; then should we find men believing; and men believing are men saved.” Spurgeon, C. H. (1893). The Whole Machinery of Salvation. In The Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit Sermons (Vol. 39, p. 463).
“Faith is nothing but the instrument of our salvation. Nowhere in Scripture will you find that we are justified because of our faith; nowhere in Scripture will you find that we are justified on account of our faith. The Scripture says that we are justified by faith or through faith. Faith is nothing but the instrument or the channel by which this righteousness of God in Christ becomes ours. It is not faith that saves us. What saves us is the Lord Jesus Christ and His perfect work. It is the death of Christ upon Calvary’s Cross that saves us. It is His perfect life that saves us. It is His appealing on our behalf in the presence of God that saves us. It is God putting Christ’s righteousness to our account that saves us. That is the righteousness that saves; faith is but the channel and the instrument by which His righteousness becomes mine. The righteousness is entirely Christ’s. My faith is not my righteousness and I must never think of faith as righteousness. Faith is nothing but that which links us to the Lord Jesus Christ and His righteousness.” – D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
“The only one who can produce genuine repentance in your soul is God.” – R.C. Sproul
“They go and set up free-will with the heathen philosophers and say that a man’s free-will is the cause why God chooseth one and not another, contrary to all scriptures.” – William Tyndale
“..If election is from foreseen faith, God would not have elected man, but rather man would have elected God, and so predestination should rather be called post-destination; the first cause would be made the second, and God would depend on man (the falsity of which, both the thing itself exclaims and Christ expressly testifies: ‘Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you,’ (John. 15:16).” Francis Turretin, Institutes
Dr. James White: “…consistent, full-on Arminianism (not the historic view of Arminius himself, oddly, but the more modern versions that have shed the Reformed heritage that was Arminius’) I do believe leads, inevitably and consistently (please note those terms), to a non-saving, man-centered system of religion. No question about it. But there is all the difference in the world to confess that and, at the same time, to recognize what I have often called the “blessed inconsistencies” of our Arminian, or more accurately, synergistic, brothers and sisters in Christ. I have met very few consistent Arminians—I have met many who have firmly extolled truths that have no place in a consistent Arminianism, and yet they are unaware of how their system is self-contradictory. I was one of those—every Calvinist that came to the Reformed position through prayer and study of the Word knows what I mean. But I was not saved the day I asked John Calvin into my heart. I was saved when I trusted in Jesus, and He faithfully led me, by His grace, to an understanding of His truth. In His time. In His fashion.
This introduction at P&P tells God He has no right to draw a straight line with a crooked stick. It is straightforward: until you embrace all of Calvinism (I wonder just how much of that they really believe, or just how perfect their own understanding actually is?), you are lost. Unsaved. Enemy of God. Only Calvinists are saved. Pretty blunt, but there it is. Hyper-Calvinism in all its theological snobbery and perfectionism, never realizing that God works with sinners over time, in His own way, to cause them to GROW in grace and the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. I was an heir of grace before I ever heard of John Calvin, ever heard of particular redemption, ever heard of many elements of Reformed theology. Once you start making the definition of the gospel more strict than the Spirit did in the Word, you have walked out of grace and into the realm of error yourself. Mark these men, keep an eye out for them! Few things can kill a Reformed church faster than graceless hyperism.”
“With a glorious monotonous regularity Paul pits faith off over against all law-keeping as its diametrical opposite as to referent. Whereas the latter relies on the human effort of the law-keeper looking to himself to render satisfaction before God, the former repudiates and looks entirely away from all human effort to the cross work of Jesus Christ, who alone by his sacrificial death rendered satisfaction before God for men.” – Robert Reymond, A New Systematic Theology of the Christian Faith, p. 732
“A doctrine which is said to have lately become true must of necessity be a lie. Falsehood has no beard, but truth is hoary with an age immeasurable.” – C.H. Spurgeon
“Anything that divorces people from their reliance upon the Word of God is not the work of the Author of the Word of God. Anything that diverts our attention away from Scripture is not coming from the author of Scripture. It’s coming from the enemy.” – Justin Peters
“No one sets out to be an apostate – it is never the result of one abrupt, drastic turn away from the Lord. Instead, apostasy is most often the product of a sinful pattern of sinful compromises that harden and gradually steer a professing believer away from the truth.” – Dr. John MacArthur
“Don’t let your feelings inform your doctrine, let your doctrine inform your feelings.” – Burk Parsons
“The Christian is a man who should have assurance; it is the business of every Christian to have assurance… The Roman Catholic Church not only does not teach the doctrine of Assurance of Salvation, it preaches and teaches against it. Why? The explanation is quite simple. As long as you are uncertain, you are dependent upon the Church, you are dependent upon the priests. If you have assurance of salvation you do not need a priest, you do not need the help of the Virgin Mary, or the works of supererogation of the saints; you go directly to God through Christ. Assurance of salvation militates against the whole policy and activity of that Church with its teaching about purgatory and need of indulgences and so on; so they denounce that doctrine. That is, of course, because they put their own tradition before the Scripture, indeed because they here deny the plain teaching of the Scripture. They are thoroughly unscriptural and they can only establish their whole system, and keep it going, in defiance of the Scriptures.” – D Martyn Lloyd Jones, Romans – Assurance
Since we, as justified people, have been given imperatives in Scripture, does this then mean that our sanctification is this cooperative, joint venture with God?
“…It’s a debate, right now, that sanctification unlike justification, is synergistic. Synergism, which is from Greek: Ergo: work; Syn: together; Synergism: God and us working together are going to pull this off. …So, God provides enough grace for the whole thing to be done. No one could ever say, I didn’t have enough grace, but you’ve got to make something of that grace. You’ve gotta do your part. There’s enough grace for you to pull it off. Grace is like a medicinal substance that is infused into you… so that you can do it. The cooperation part is actually you doing it. The grace part is God giving you the ability to. Synergism has been rejected by all the Reformation traditions. Lutherans and Reformed Christians plant our flag on this hill that we will die on forever. God alone saves, not only without our help, but while we’re screaming, NO, You will not save me. While we were sinners, Christ died for us. You were dead in trespasses and sins. He made you alive. By grace you are saved…. Pump in all the grace you’ve got, and it’s flat line. Regeneration is not synergistic… God calls life out of death. …One sided, not cooperative at all. …And so some people say, because of that, although justification isn’t synergistic, cooperative, sanctification is. So, now we get to the Christian life, and now it is cooperative. What else would you do with all those passages that urge you to press on, to grow up, to add this to that, to make every effort to…? …What do you do with them? Yes. They are calling us to do something. We ought not to downplay the importance of those imperatives. But here is the question: Are they calling us to cooperate in the process of sanctification, so that we will be better today than we were last week, or are they commands for us to respond appropriately to the fact that we are united to Christ, and are, therefore, already justified and holy in Him, bearing fruit of faith and repentance? Synergists use Philippians 2:12 to show synergism. …You’ve gotta work it out or you won’t be justified. No Protestant child of the Reformation is going to agree that applies to justification, but may say sanctification is in view here… Only as we cooperate can we work out our sanctification. Is that what he’s saying? Context always matters here. …He is saying that even though he is absent from them, they can work out their own salvation. They don’t need him around all the time. He’s not saying work for your own salvation. He’s not saying cooperate in your own salvation. He’s saying work out your salvation which you already have from God, in Christ alone. That’s what sanctification is. There is no danger in sanctification. We’ve gotta stop being scared of sanctification. Sanctification is wonderful!… You will fail at this. Sanctification is a process of our growth. …But thing that picks us up again and again in this process is that there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. I failed… Get up… What did you learn from it?… How can this be an opportunity for you to grow? … In every Epistle, Paul is saying, This is who you are in Christ… Work it out. What has been worked for you, is now being worked in you by the Holy Spirit. Now you work it out. So, it’s not synergism. At no point is God doing part of it, and you’re doing part of it, equaling success, not even in sanctification. At every stage along the way, God is doing all of the saving… All whom He justifies, He sanctifies… and He will finish that which He has begun. It is not synergism. It is monergism. Sanctification is working out that salvation that which has been worked for us. – Gleaned from Michael S. Horton
“And we who through his will have been called in Christ Jesus are justified, not by ourselves, or through our wisdom or understanding or godliness, or the works that we have done in holiness of heart, but by faith, by which all men from the beginning have been justified by Almighty God, to whom be glory world without end. Amen.” 1st Clement 32:4, 95AD.
“God is the owner; we are stewards. We need to adopt a steward’s mentality toward the assets He has entrusted – not given – to us. Stewards manage assets for the owner’s benefit. Stewards carry no sense of entitlement to the assets they manage. It’s the steward’s job to find out what the owner wants done with his assets, then carry out his will.” – Randy Alcorn
“Do not think Christians are made by education; they are made by creation… The vital spark must come from above! Regeneration is not of the will of man, nor of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, but by the power and energy of the Spirit of God, and the Spirit of God alone!” – C. H. Spurgeon
“The trouble with all false evangelism is that it does not start with doctrine, it does not start by realising man’s condition… If you and I realised that every man who is yet a sinner is absolutely dominated by the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience, if we only understood that he is really a child of wrath and dead in trespasses and sins, we would realise that only one power can deal with such an individual, and that is the power of God, the power of the Holy Spirit. And so we would put our confidence, not in man-made organisations, but in the power of God, in the prayer that holds on to God and asks for revival and a descent of the Spirit. We would realise that nothing else can do it. We can change men superficially, we can win men to our side and to our party, we can persuade them to join a church, but we can never raise the spiritually dead; God alone can do that.” – Martyn Lloyd-Jones (Ephesians – God’s Way Of Reconciliation)
“God has surely promised His grace to the humbled, that is, to those who mourn over and despair of themselves. But a man cannot be thoroughly humbled till he realizes that his salvation is utterly beyond his own powers, counsels, efforts, will and works, and depends, absolutely on the will, counsel, pleasure and works of Another – God alone. As long as he is persuaded that he can make even the smallest contribution to his salvation, he remains self-confident and does not utterly despair of himself, and so is not humbled before God.” (Martin Luther)
CONVERSION – MORE THAN HEAD KNOWLEDGE
“Many persons row hard to get the ship to land by a notional belief in orthodox doctrine. This superstition is harder to deal with, but quite as dangerous as the belief in good works. It is quite as legal an idea for me to think to be accepted by believing good doctrine as to expect to be pardoned for doing good works. Yet we have scores of people who if they can get hold of the Calvinistic creed at the right end; if they become masters of it and know how to argue against Arminianism; if they become not only sound Calvinists but a little sounder still, having not only the sixteen ounces to the pound but two or three ounces over and above, so as to make them ultra-Calvinistic; why then they fancy that all must be well. ‘I never can hear a preacher,’ this man will say, ‘who is not sound. I can tell at once when there is a grain of free will in the sermon.’ This is all very well, but he who boasts thus may be no better than the devil; nay, he may not be so good, for the devil believes and trembles, but these men believe and are too much hardened in their own conceit to think of trembling. Away with the idea that believing sound doctrine and chaining ourselves to a cast-iron creed is vital godliness and eternal life. Orthodox sinners will find that hell is hot, and that their knowledge of predestination will not yield a cooling drop to their parched tongues. Condemning other people, cutting off the saints of God right and left, is but poor virtue, and to have these blessed doctrines in the head while neglecting them in the heart is anything but a gracious sign. If ye can “a hair divide betwixt the west and north-west side,” do not therefore fancy that your fine gifts and profound orthodoxy will ensure you an entrance into the kingdom of heaven, Ah! You may row with those oars, but you will not get the ship to land, ye must be saved by sovereign grace, through the operation of the Holy Spirit upon the heart, or you will not be saved at all. As it is not by doing that we are saved, neither is it by subscribing to creeds; there is something more than this needed ere the ship reach the port.” – C. H. Spurgeon – From A Sermon Delivered on May 1, 1864, Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington.