Macro and Micro Evolution: Know the Difference

Some Quotes by Russ Miller:

The next time you’re asked if you believe in evolution, correctly respond, “I believe in Biblically and scientifically correct micro-evolution.” Let me explain. Darwinists show kids pictures of brown moths and yellow moths; then discuss how they’ve descended from a common ancestor over ‘millions of years.’ Well, drop the ‘millions of years’ and I agree they have a common ancestor, it was a moth. They’ve simply ‘brought forth after their kind’ as God’s Word tells us will occur and as real science always finds. This is micro-evolution, not never-observed Darwinian-macro evolution. The ability to micro-adapt was placed in their gene pool from the start by their Creator who gave His created kinds a tremendous range of genetic variation which allows them to adapt to various climates & conditions.

I always cringe when I hear Christians say they don’t believe in ‘evolution.’ I realize they mean in Darwinian-style change but they’re putting themselves in a position that is opposed to observable science, science that shows God’s Word is true, and thus in a position to be factually shot down.

The word ‘evolution’ has many meanings. Darwinian change would be ‘macro-evolution’ which has NEVER been observed. Micro-evolution (adaptations, variations within the same ‘kind’) occur in the same kind of plant or animal and are both Biblically and scientifically correct.

Darwinists show Biblically correct micro-evolution then switch the discussion to never-seen macro-evolution and mislead billions of people.

Ten times in Genesis we’re told kinds will bring forth after their kind. Real science confirms this, observing that ‘kinds only bring forth after their kind.’ Variations, adaptations and micro-evolution are all the same thing – kinds bringing forth after their kind. If you believe in one you believe in the other. When you tell someone that you don’t believe in ‘evolution’ you hand the victory to Darwinists as they can show millions of examples of Biblically correct micro-evolution while leading them to think these are examples of Darwinian macro-changes. If you define the difference between micro and macro you win the debate while showing everyone the Bible is right.

When you say there’s no proof of evolution, Darwinists show micro and mislead many. When you say adaptation, variation and micro-evolution are the same thing, resulting from the loss of genetic data; while Darwinian macro evolution requires the addition of massive amounts of new and beneficial genetic data, you leave them nowhere to go.

Macro requires the addition of massive amounts of both new and beneficial genetic data (real science knows of no way for this to occur) to cause one kind to evolve/change to another. Micro is caused by the sorting or loss of already existing genetic data (Gene Depletion) and is the only thing real science observes. Breeders use Gene Depletion to get rid of traits they don’t want.

Breeders breed out information to get purebreds by selecting traits to breed for, gradually eliminating non-wanted traits. Though this is helped by intelligently selecting the traits, this is akin to what we call adaptation-variation-micro evolution. Darwinian macro-evolution requires massive amounts of new and beneficial information being added to a gene pool and science know of NO WAY for this to occur in nature.

Real science is a Believer’s true friend. Always has been; always will be. False science, such as Darwinian macro-evolution is another issue and is anti-Biblical.

God’s Sovereignty and the Human Will

Article by A. W. Pink (original source here)

“It is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure” Phil. 2:13.

Concerning the nature and the power of fallen man’s will, the greatest confusion prevails today, and the most erroneous views are held, even by many of God’s children. The popular idea now prevailing, and which is taught from the great majority of pulpits, is that man has a “free will”, and that salvation comes to the sinner through his will cooperating with the Holy Spirit. To deny the “free will” of man, i.e. his power to choose that which is good, his native ability to accept Christ, is to bring one into disfavour at once, even before most of those who profess to be orthodox.

And yet Scripture emphatically says, “It is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy” Rom. 9:16.

Which shall we believe: God, or the preachers?

But some one may reply, Did not Joshua say to Israel, “Choose you this day whom ye will serve”? Yes, he did; but why not complete his sentence? — “whether the gods that your fathers served which were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell” Joshua 24:15! But why attempt to pit scripture against scripture? The Word of God never contradicts itself, and the Word expressly declares, “There is none that seeketh after God” Rom. 3:11.

Did not Christ say to the men of his day, “Ye will not come to me, that ye might have life” John 5:40? Yes, but some did come to him, some did receive him. True and who were they?

John 1:12,13 tells us: “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, to them that believe on his name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God”!

But does not Scripture say, “Whosoever will may come”? It does, but does this signify that everybody has the will to come? What of those who will not come? “Whosoever will may come” no more implies that fallen man has the power (in himself) to come, than “Stretch forth thine hand” implied that the man with the withered arm had ability (in himself) to comply.

In and of himself the natural man has power to reject Christ; but in and of himself he has not the power to receive Christ.

And why?

Because he has a mind that is “enmity against him” Rom. 8:7; because he has a heart that hates him John 15:18. Man chooses that which is according to his nature, and therefore before he will ever choose or prefer that which is divine and spiritual, a new nature must be imparted to him; in other words, he must be born again. Continue reading

John 3:16 (Some Resources)

Pas ho pisteuwn: ‘everyone believing’ not ‘all can believe’

Chapter 8 of my book, Twelve What Abouts:

WHAT ABOUT JOHN 3:16?

The question usually posed here is something like this: How can you reconcile belief in Divine election with John 3:16?

Most assume it is not possible. Actually, if we carefully take a look at the text and not just assume its meaning, John 3:16 is a wonderful scripture that in no way undermines the truth of Divine election.

It is certainly the most famous verse in the entire Bible. Here Jesus says: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”

When hearing the biblical teaching on the subject of Divine election, some seek immediate refuge in a traditional, and may I say unbiblical, understanding of this verse.

They say this: “God can’t elect certain ones to salvation because John 3:16 says that God so loved the world that gave His Son so that WHOEVER believes in Christ would have eternal life. Therefore, God has done His part in offering the gift of salvation in His Son and just leaves it up to us to receive the gift through faith. Amen. Case closed!”

Though this is a very common tradition, and one I held to myself for many a year, it needs to be pointed out that in spite of the emphasis made by many people on the word “whoever,” the text does not actually discuss who does or does not have the ability to believe.

Someone might just as well be quoting John 3:16 to suggest that all churches need to have red carpets in their sanctuaries! Why? Because that also is not a topic addressed in the text. The verse is often quoted, but actually it has no relevance to the subject.
For the understanding of a text in the New Testament, we need to check the original language in which it was written, namely Koine Greek. It may come as a big surprise to learn that in the original Greek of John 3:16, there is no word corresponding to our English word “whoever.” The word “whoever” is expressing a phrase in Greek which is difficult to express smoothly in English.

Literally, the text reads “in order that every the one believing in Him, not to perish, but have everlasting life.” Continue reading

Sovereign Over Human Hearts

“The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the LORD; he turns it wherever he will.” – Prov. 21:1

“If Yahweh is sovereign over the greatest human will, He is sovereign over all human wills.” – Dan Phillips

The Treasure and Heart Connection

In Matthew 6: 19 -21 Jesus said, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

If we understand that Jesus is truly Divine (as well as truly human) we recognize that He speaks with absolute authority and absolute knowledge. That is quite the combination. We, on the other hand, as finite human beings, having no such authority and no such knowledge. We are therefore extremely foolish to disregard what He says.

In this passage, Jesus tells us not to lay up earthly treasures but instead to lay up for ourselves treasure in heaven. He then explains why. Earthly treasure is not a stable investment. It is subject to rotting, rusting and theft. In contrast, heavenly treasure is not in any way subject to rotting, rusting and theft. Heavenly treasure is secure, eternally secure. It can never rot; can never rust, and can never be stolen from us.

Then, He reveals an enlightening principle: our heart will always follow our treasure investment. Think about that! Our treasure has something of an unseen chord that leads directly to our hearts. Wherever it is we lay up our treasure, we will find that our hearts gravitate towards it. If our treasure is in this world, our heart will gravitate towards this world. If our treasure is in stocks, bonds, silver or gold, investments and real estate, that is where our hearts will be. Yet, if our treasure is placed in heavenly investments, our heart will gravitate towards the heavenly.

The earthly investments are all in the seen realm, the real of the five senses. Heavenly investments are in the unseen realm. Giving to the kingdom of God involves investments in Christ’s enterprises. In involves supporting the local Church, the extension of the gospel, giving to the poor, touching the lives of those less fortunate than ourselves. That is why the Christian life is a walk of faith. We walk by faith, not by sight (2 Cor. 5:7).

GOD LOVES A CHEERFUL GIVER

“Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” – 2 Cor. 9:7

Jesus tells us what is very real and very true, and yet unseen by earthly eyes. Do we trust Him? Do we believe Him? If we do, then we will rejoice in our giving. God loves “cheerful” not “tearful” or “fearful” givers.

Giving with a cheerful heart can only occur when we believe our investments in eternal things is the best possible investment. There is no “buyer’s regret” in kingdom investments. They are shrewd and wise investments. That is because no one investing in kingdom stock wishes they had invested less than they did. Believe me, no one in heaven regrets giving even a dime of their wealth to the kingdom of God. The only regret might be that we did not give more.

Each giving opportunity is an opportunity to invest in eternal things. Jesus says “lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven.” When we believe Jesus’ words, giving actually makes perfect sense, and in fact, we are happy with even the thought of giving, hence we become “cheerful givers.”

I once encountered a man who was troubled because in a short space of time, he had received several promotions in his job, and this meant his tithe check to his church (a tithe is 10% of income) had tripled in less than a year. He was now giving far more than he had before. And he was troubled by this… He asked me to pray for him.

I said, “I think I know just the prayer to pray for you.” We both bowed our heads in a moment of prayer and I began to pray:

“Lord, you know that since you gave him these promotions, my brother’s giving is large now. Please, Lord, allow him to go back to his salary of a few months ago… We know you have the power to do this, so Lord, please demote him… please let him earn less income, so he can be comfortable in his giving once again…”

Now before I had finished saying “Amen” the man stopped me abruptly and said, “no, no, no, I see the point you are making pastor… don’t pray that prayer for me…”

I said “what is my point?”

“That I should be grateful for the promotions I have received and excited that I can now give this amount, when I could not do so before.”

I said, “you are right! You have much to be thankful for. God is allowing you to earn more so you can be in a position to give more. Think of Abraham. In Genesis 12:2 God said, “And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing.” He was blessed to be a blessing! That is God’s purpose for us also when He blesses us.

Just a few verses on from these words above we read of Jesus saying:

“No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” (Matt. 6:24)

There is no neutral ground when it comes to the use of our money. We either love God or hate Him. We are either devoted to God or devoted to money.

That’s quite a thought. Let’s remember this though: Money can never be our god when we are giving it away. If Jesus is our Lord, we will trust Him in what He says about life, salvation and the use of our money, and when we do, our giving will not be in any way reluctant, but a joyous expression of faith, obedience, and the thrill of laying up treasure of an eternal kind, which can never be taken away. Praise the Lord!

State of the Church

Interview with J. I. Packer (original source here)

Modern Reformation: Dr. Packer, you’ve done a great deal of writing and speaking on the subject of the need for a new reformation, a new awareness of the sovereignty and grace of God in our day. How do you assess the condition of the state of evangelicalism as it presently exists, and what do you think we can do about that condition.

J. I. Packer: I see evangelical strength in America needing desperately to be undergirded by Reformation convictions, otherwise the numeric growth of evangelicals, which has been such a striking thing in our time, is likely never to become a real power, morally and spiritually, in the community that it ought to be. I mean by Reformation truth, a God-centered way of thinking, an appreciation of his sovereignty, an appreciation of how radical the damage of sin is to the human condition and community, and with that, an appreciation of just how radical and transforming is the power of the Lord Jesus Christ in his saving grace. If you don’t see deep into the problem, you don’t see deep into the solution. My fear is that a lot of evangelicals today are just not seeing deep enough in both the problem and the need. But Reformation theology takes you down to the very depth of the human problem. And actually, the Reformation itself was a recovery of the tremendous contribution that the great St. Augustine made back at the turn of the 4th and 5th centuries. He was the man who, more than anyone else in Christendom, saw to the heart of the real problem. He saw how much damage sin had done, how completely we were oriented away from God by nature. He is the one who left us that phrase “original sin” which he got from the text of Psalm 51:5, “Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.” He also saw in response to our sinful condition, how great a work of transformation was needed by the grace of God in human lives. The sixteenth century reformers stood on Augustine’s shoulders at this point. Of course they clarified the great truth that justification by faith is the way in which the grace of God reaches us. We need, even today, a Christianity that was as deep and strong as that. And this, it seems to me, is where modern evangelicalism is lacking.

MR: Would you say that there is a connection or a similarity between the man-centered theology of evangelicalism and the general humanistic spirit? Continue reading

Is Justification Forensic?

Article by Turretinfan: Is Justification Forensic?

Some opponents of reformation theology attempt to deny that the term justification can be used in the context of declaration of righteousness, as opposed to infusion of righteousness. For those folks, the passages that contrast justification with condemnation should help. Surely none of these people will think that condemnation is the infusion of unrighteousness. Rather, they will recognize that condemnation is a judicial declaration of unrighteousness.

By contrast, therefore, it can be seen that justification is a declaration of righteousness. We see this several times in Scripture, both in the English of the KJV, as well as in the Clementine Latin Vulgate, so our Roman Catholic opponents have no room to complain:

1 Kings 8:32
(KJV) Then hear thou in heaven, and do, and judge thy servants, condemning the wicked, to bring his way upon his head; and justifying the righteous, to give him according to his righteousness.
(CLV) tu exaudies in cælo : et facies, et judicabis servos tuos, condemnans impium, et reddens viam suam super caput ejus, justificansque justum, et retribuens ei secundum justitiam suam.
(LXX) καὶ σὺ εἰσακούσει ἐκ τοῦ οὐρανοῦ καὶ ποιήσεις καὶ κρινεῖς τὸν λαόν σου Ισραηλ ἀνομηθῆναι ἄνομον δοῦναι τὴν ὁδὸν αὐτοῦ εἰς κεφαλὴν αὐτοῦ καὶ τοῦ δικαιῶσαι δίκαιον δοῦναι αὐτῷ κατὰ τὴν δικαιοσύνην αὐτοῦ.

Job 9:20
(KJV) If I justify myself, mine own mouth shall condemn me: if I say, I am perfect, it shall also prove me perverse.
(CLV) Si justificare me voluero, os meum condemnabit me ; si innocentem ostendero, pravum me comprobabit.
(LXX) ἐὰν γὰρ ὦ δίκαιος, τὸ στόμα μου ἀσεβήσει· ἐάν τε ὦ ἄμεμπτος, σκολιὸς ἀποβήσομαι.

Proverbs 17:15
(KJV) He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the Lord.
(CLV) Qui justificat impium, et qui condemnat justum, abominabilis est uterque apud Deum.
(LXX) ὃς δίκαιον κρίνει τὸν ἄδικον, ἄδικον δὲ τὸν δίκαιον, ἀκάθαρτος καὶ βδελυκτὸς παρὰ θεῷ.

Matthew 12:37
(KJV) For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.
(CLV) Ex verbis enim tuis justificaberis et ex verbis tuis condemnaberis.
(NA28) ἐκ γὰρ τῶν λόγων σου δικαιωθήσῃ, καὶ ἐκ τῶν λόγων σου καταδικασθήσῃ.

Romans 5:16
(KJV) And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.
(CLV) Et non sicut per unum peccatum, ita et donum. Nam judicium quidem ex uno in condemnationem : gratia autem ex multis delictis in justificationem.
(NA28) καὶ οὐχ ὡς δι’ ἑνὸς ἁμαρτήσαντος τὸ δώρημα· τὸ μὲν γὰρ κρίμα ἐξ ἑνὸς εἰς κατάκριμα, τὸ δὲ χάρισμα ἐκ πολλῶν παραπτωμάτων εἰς δικαίωμα.

Romans 5:18
(KJV) Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.
(CLV) Igitur sicut per unius delictum in omnes homines in condemnationem : sic et per unius justitiam in omnes homines in justificationem vitæ.
(NA28) Ἄρα οὖν ὡς δι’ ἑνὸς παραπτώματος εἰς πάντας ἀνθρώπους εἰς κατάκριμα, οὕτως καὶ δι’ ἑνὸς δικαιώματος εἰς πάντας ἀνθρώπους εἰς δικαίωσιν ζωῆς·

Entertainment and Worship

Article by Pastor Joe Thorn of Redeemer Fellowship in Saint Charles, Illinois. (original source here)

In every church and every generation of Christians, there is the potential to lose our focus on the things that are most important (Heb. 2:1). We must constantly remind ourselves and re-center our churches lest we find ourselves trusting in something other than the gospel of God and the Word of God.

One of the more dangerous drifts happening in our local churches today is within our corporate worship. In many churches there is a de-emphasis on the means of grace (Scripture, prayer, and the sacraments or ordinances), and a reliance on entertainment. Some try to balance the two in the name of reaching more people with the gospel, but there is an inescapable danger in overvaluing entertainment and implementing it in corporate worship.

This is not a new phenomenon. The nineteenth-century pastor Charles Spurgeon said, “The devil has seldom done a cleverer thing than hinting to the church that part of their mission is to provide entertainment for the people, with a view to winning them.” It may not be new, but it is increasingly popular, especially in light of our entertainment-driven culture. We see this in secular songs played by worship bands to wow the crowd. It’s hard to miss the value of amusement in the comedy-full but theology-empty preaching of many pulpits. Many of us have felt it in elaborate performances for the congregation to observe, but not to participate in. For some, Sunday morning more closely resembles a variety show than an offering made to God. The danger in bringing entertainment into gathered worship lies in the aim of entertainment and its work against the aim of worship.

I am not suggesting that church should be boring or that every church should have identical worship services, as if there is only one appropriate form in which to worship the Lord. Corporate worship from church to church varies in many ways. The styles, music, and liturgies developed in particular contexts and traditions lead to different flavors in worship. The church of Jesus Christ is made up of people, and therefore congregations, from every tribe, tongue, and nation, and this means diversity from church to church. This is often a good thing, something we can celebrate, as long as the church’s worship is ordered according to the parameters of Scripture and offered by faith.

The encroachment of entertainment into our worship is not a matter of style but of substance. Entertainment is a good thing, but its purpose is the refreshment of the mind and body, not the transformation of the mind or the edification of the spirit. The danger of entertainment in worship is not about which musical instruments are permitted or what era of hymns the church should sing. The danger is found in what the church is aiming at.

Entertainment has a different aim than worship. Entertainment is something offered to people for their amusement. Yet worship has a different focus and produces a different result.

The focus of worship is God, not man, which immediately pits it against entertainment. We offer ourselves to the Lord individually and collectively on Sunday morning. The church ascribes honor to God in the reading, preaching, singing, and praying of His Word. True worship is inherently God-centered and God-directed. What is done when the church is gathered is to be done according to God’s will and for His pleasure. This stands in opposition to entertainment, which is a spiritually powerless work directed at the people.

While worship is to be directed at God, it simultaneously offers much more than entertainment can ever deliver. As the church draws near to God, the Lord draws near to us, and we receive grace. Grace—regenerating grace, renewing grace, reviving grace—is offered to the congregation through the means of grace. The result of worshiping God in spirit and truth is transformation. Entertainment cannot lead to edification. Entertainment can stir the emotions, but God uses the means of grace to change our affections. Entertainment might draw a crowd or captivate a congregation, but only the means of grace will draw people to Christ and conform them to His image.

The beauty of worship is that it is infinitely more powerful than entertainment. Entertainment seeks to replicate drama and awe. But the grace of God in worship unveils the deepest drama in the world and produces authentic awe in the light of the revelation of God.

True worship may be painful one moment and joyful the next, as we encounter God’s law and gospel, confessing our sins and resting in the pardon we have in Jesus Christ. What is more dramatic than condemned sinners being forgiven by a holy God? Than slaves’ being set free by the Savior? What is more thrilling than the Son of God’s standing in the place of the ungodly to save them from God’s wrath? The church doesn’t need a performance of any kind to aid us in worship. We need the Word of God read and preached, prayed and sung, for in this we exalt and experience our triune God.

Entertainment has its place and serves a good, if earthly, purpose. Our local churches will do well to be careful of drifting toward it in an effort to draw or address the needs of sinful men and women. The Scripture is what God uses to penetrate the soul and change the heart. May we give ourselves to worship the Lord in spirit and truth, rather than mere emotion and amusement.

How to Pray for Your Pastor

Article by Melton Duncan, a ruling elder at Second Presbyterian Church in Greenville, S.C. (original source here)

When Roman legions invaded Caledonia (modern-day Scotland) in the late first century AD, it was said by the historian Tacitus that the powerful Celtic chieftain Calgacus emerged and rallied his tribes against the might of Rome, famously declaring, “They make a desert, and they call it peace.”

Today’s Christian pastor is likewise making similar stands for biblical Christianity in the midst of a secular desert created by an anti-Christian culture. The Bible describes a faithful pastor as an elder who oversees the flock and the household of God. According to Paul, pastor/elders rule the church (Titus 1:5) and guard the treasures of Christ (v. 9). Additionally, they minister to the people by teaching, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness (2 Tim. 3:16).

If ever there was an era in Christian history that believers should be committed to praying for their pastors, it is now. James rebukes our prayerlessness when he says, “You do not have, because you do not ask” (James 4:2). And what prayers are we offering up to God on behalf of our pastors? Let me suggest several.

THAT HE WOULD DELIGHT IN PREACHING

If your minister is not being blessed and instructed by the Word, it is highly unlikely that you will be. Your spiritual well-being is directly linked to your pastor’s seeking the Lord in his preparation for the sacred desk. If he is not diligently seeking the Lord, you won’t find Him in his preaching either.

A godly pastor is a joyful, dutiful herald of the most high King. His enthusiasm for proclaiming God’s Word will be infectious and unstoppable, and it will be readily apparent to all who hear him that this is a man who knows his God. Second Timothy 4:1–2 reads:

I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.

THAT HE WOULD ENJOY THE LORD’S WAY

I suspect that many people who sit week after week in the pews of their particular church have no idea how difficult a Sunday is for a minister and his family. Pray for your pastor’s Sundays. Robert Murray M’Cheyne says: “A well-spent sabbath we feel to be a day of heaven upon earth. … We love to rise early on that morning, and to sit up late, that we may have a long day with God.”

THAT HE WOULD LEAD HIS FAMILY WELL

Pray that God would help your pastor in the midst of busyness to taste and see that the Lord is good. Pray that his children would grow up loved and cherished in the household of faith. Joel Beeke says: “Family worship is the foundation of child rearing. As family worship goes, so will go the family. The Puritans thought family worship was the whole backbone of society.” We read in Deuteronomy 6:4–7:

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.

THAT HE WOULD HAVE A HEART FOR THE LOST

May your pastor have a Christlike love for the lost and a joy in telling others about the Shepherd-King. If a man loves the Lord, he will love telling others the old story of the gospel. He also will teach and model for others a renewed sense of evangelism and mission. He is worthy to receive the glory and honor due Him (Rev. 4:11). Christ, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, is worthy to receive the reward. We need our pastors to have a zeal for the lost.

THAT THE LORD WOULD PROTECT HIM

A growing personal relationship with Christ will supply the motivation and zeal needed for a pastor’s duty to God. It will be tiring. It will require an all-in, total commitment. Pray that God would provide every physical and emotional need for the call to serve. Pastors are often subject spiritual temptation, so pray for God to protect these men from the evil one. Pray that they would guard themselves and be granted personal holiness. Pray that they would apply the means of grace to their own hearts, by God’s help.

THAT HE WOULD PREACH THE GOSPEL

Thomas Smyth of the antebellum historic Second Presbyterian Church in Charleston, S.C., once charged a young pastor by saying:

Preaching is your pre-eminent employment, so the Gospel is the sum and substance of your preaching—the power of God and the wisdom of God unto salvation.

Necessity is laid upon you, yea, woe is unto you if you preach not the Gospel. … Preach Christ as set forth in the Gospel—the sum and substance of God’s testimony, and the author of eternal salvation to all who believe upon him.

Preach—this glorious Gospel of good news—first and last, every way, and everywhere, in public and in private; in the pulpit and by the press; to the living and to the dying; to the lost and the saved.

Pray for your pastor, pray as if your very life and those you love depended upon it.