Wednesday Testimony – Dying Well

There are many ways we can give a testimony, from the beginning of salvation to the beginning of eternity with Christ, we tell the world of Gods glory. If you have any experience with Foxes Book of Martyres then you know the power a testimony can have of a believer who dies well.

Philippians-1:20

John Calvin has became a controversial figure in church history, as you know I like to avoid controversial issues. Ok, jokes aside, if you want soft serve Christian posts you’ve probably landed on the wrong side of the blogosphere. Calvin’s life might have been controversial, but his death is extremely telling.

He wrote in his last will and testament that he did not want a marked grave. His family and friends were shocked when they found out, and still to this day no one knows where Calvin was buried. It’s interesting to note that John Calvin sought fame before becoming saved, he wanted to be well known. Once saved he wanted only to make known the Savior. In his death he made one final effort to point his followers to Christ, and away from his name. 

John-Calvin

We tend to look back at these impressively bearded men of church history in awe and wonder. Calvin’s death should serve as a reminder, as a testimony to where our awe and wonder should be placed. The vessel God uses is not to be the point of our worship, God Himself is worthy of all honor, praise, and glory. He took the heart of stone out of a man and replaced it with a heart of flesh. He used that man to change church history, then He brought that man home to eternal peace in His glorious presence. 

It’s not by Calvin’s might that he died well, but by the grace of God. Wednesday Testimony’s are not to deify man, but to glorify the one who saves man. If we put our faith in man we will consistently be disappointed.

Philippians-1:21-24

Place you faith in the God that saves, flee from the wrath to come! If you are unsure of your salvation, if you’ve never worked through it with fear and trembling, I encourage you to do so now. Cry out to God! If you have any questions feel free to ask, or find an elder or pastor in your church to talk to about this. 

As always, my beloved brethren, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

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Wednesday Testimony – Martin Luther

Brethren, it’s Reformation Anniversary Fever! You’re probably going to hear this testimony a million times this month. It’s worth it, read it a million times beloved friends! There is only one other person in my studies of church history that I can see come remotely close to the awareness of his own sin as Luther, and that’s Bunyan. The deep understanding Luther had of his own sin led to the deep love he had towards the God that forgave him that sin.


My favorite anecdote of Luther is when Rome sent him a letter telling him to knock it off. Luther and all his students go out to the middle of the street and burn that letter at the stake! Why? Because essentially the letter was a threat, recant or you will be called a heretic and burned at the stake. I think Rome got the message, and he probably would have been martyred if not for some friends in high places. Ever hear of Junker Jorg? Trust me, brethren, you want to hear that story! 


One more anecdote and I’m done, I promise. Luther once said that he would never marry because his life was in constant danger. A year later he married a nun he helped smuggle out in fish barrels with some of her friends! You really need to be careful what you tell God your not willing to do. Ok now on to the testimony!


 

“But up till then it was not the cold blood ab out the heart, but a single word in Chapter 1, “In it the righteousness of God is revealed,” that had stood in my way. For I hated that word “righteousness of God,” which, according to the use and custom of all the teachers, I had been taught to understand philosophically regarding the formal or active righteousness, as they call it, with which God is righteous and punishes the unrighteous sinner.
Though I lived as a monk without reproach, I felt that I was a sinner before God with an extremely disturbed conscience. I could not believe that he was placated by my satisfaction. I did not love, yes, I hated the righteous God who punishes sinners, and secretly, if not blasphemously, certainly murmuring greatly, I was angry with God, and said, “As if, indeed, it is not enough, that miserable sinners, eternally lost through original sin, are crushed by every kind of calamity by the law of the decalogue, without having God add pain to pain by the gospel and also by the gospel threatening us with his righteousness and wrath!” Thus I raged with a fierce and troubled conscience. Nevertheless, I beat importunately upon Paul at that place, most ardently desiring to know what St. Paul wanted.
At last, by the mercy of God, meditating day and night, I gave heed to the context of the words, namely, “In it the righteousness of God is revealed, as it is written, ‘He who through faith is righteous shall live.'” There I began to understand that the righteousness of God is that by which the righteous lives by a gift of God, namely by faith. And this is the meaning: the righteousness of God is revealed by the gospel, namely, the passive righteousness with which merciful God justifies us by faith, as it is written, “He who through faith is righteous shall live.” Here I felt that I was altogether born again and had entered paradise itself through open gates. There a totally other face of the entire Scripture showed itself to me. Thereupon I ran through the Scripture from memory. I also fount in other terms an analogy, as, the work of God, that is what God does in us, the power of God, with which he makes us wise, the strenght of God, the salvation of God, the glory of God.

And I extolled my sweetest word with a love as great as the hatred with which I had before hated the word “righteousness of God.” Thus that place in Paul was for me truly the gate to paradise.”

I hope you were blessed by this testimony, beloved brethren, as always be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved!

Balance – Rock the Boat

Last Friday I spoke on my concerns over the WoF movement. I realized after writing that post that I’ve shared my personal testimony, and my immediate stumble into legalism, but I have yet to tell you all how I was brought out of the Word of Faith movement specifically. Actually once saved discernment was given and I no longer watched the televangelist preachers I had previously loved. I didn’t understand at first why I was so uncomfortable watching them. I even felt guilty, like I was somehow betraying them.

Romans-12

A year went by and a friend of mine, who I had met in a Church of God as a teenager, sent me a link to the Strange Fire conference. It was not what rocked the boat, it was what helped balanced the boat after salvation had rocked it. I had been praying for understanding for a year, and while I could open my Bible, read, study, and understand, the bigger picture was missing. What was so wrong about the Word of Faith? Something was off I knew it, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. That same friend was saved not long after sending me the link, and I praise God for His mercy!

What happened to balance the boat after devouring every video of the conference? It has a beautiful name, it’s called ‘sound doctrine’ and once introduced to it, I can’t get enough! How truly wonderful it is to hear men proclaim Gods Word, not the parts they like, twisted and out of context, but the full counsel of it! There’s only one problem, my wicked heart that seems to love extremes.

Jeremiah-17:9

If you have any slight form of OCD you understand the deep need for balance, straight lines, equal amounts of steps on both the right and left foot, the same amount of bites on one side of the mouth as the other, balance folks! Balance! Just me? That’s ok…follow me here. I want to swing violently to the opposite side of this pendulum. After sitting under spiritual abuse by the scripturally ignorant I cringe at the idea of following anything that would bring God dishonor or grieve the Holy Spirit.

Due to this, it is a daily task to keep the balance, don’t rock the boat. Left foot, right foot. I tend to reject the miraculous immediately, without hesitation, although my heart was miraculously changed and I was saved by Gods great grace! Balance. We’re not told to reject the spirits, we’re told to test them. I can’t do that without better balance then I have right now. I hope you’ll pray for me, beloved brethren, as we grow in the grace and the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, together. Through your fellowship, in the past few months, I’ve been corrected, rebuked, chastened, encouraged, edified, instructed, and blessed.

First-John-1:6-7

I have a lot to learn, and a long way to go on this pilgrimage to the Celestial City. One thing I know for certain, you all have been a tremendous help to me. I suppose I started this post out meaning to tell you more about myself, if I’ve derailed there’s a simple explanation…you have all had a profound impact on me. Your blogs are all unique, they each give a piece of the person writing like you’ve all set about each day to add to the edifying of the body of Christ. It’s a beautiful way to keep myself balanced.

Thank-You

So today I thank you all for being good Berean’s and studying to show yourselves approved! If you ever think you make no difference, think again friends.

Wednesday Testimony – Kirk Cameron


I’m not big on celebrity testimonies, we so often hear the testimony of an actor, actress, athlete or the likes, then watch their lives show no fruit. A testimony is powerful, a life changed is even more powerful, as it demonstrates the grace, mercy, and glory of God. A testimony and life in conflict is powerful as well, it becomes a powerful testimony against God and His people. Often those famous folks that have proclaimed faith in Christ have done so for publicity sake. I don’t think the same can be said for Kirk Cameron. Here is one actor whose life has shown fruit, and given evidence for a change. We do not become perfect when becoming saved, but we will be a new creature. God, in His grace, sanctifies us. Are you being sanctified, friend? If not, if you see no change, if the sin you use to love you love still (like a dog returning to its vomit) then please, work through your faith with fear and trembling. As always, beloved, be good Bereans and study to show yourselves approved.  

Thursday Book Review – Grace Abounding

Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners by John Bunyan was published in 1666. Bunyan wrote this book while he was serving a twelve-year sentence in jail for preaching without permission. This book is such a vivid account of the struggle Bunyan went through coming to faith it will make your heart ache. The only other faithful brother I’ve heard likewise is Martin Luther, who seemed to suffer from a similar burden of sin.

This book, like many other’s I’ve recommended to you, is in the public domain. This means you can download a free pdf or Kindle version, listen to an audible book, or purchase your own copy. I would strongly recommend this book to go along with the reading of The Pilgrims Progress.

http://www.chapellibrary.org/files/4813/7642/2821/bun-abounding.pdf

Wednesday Testimony – Mark Spence

I’ve shared the testimonies of Ray Comfort, and The Comfort Zone host (Ray’s son-in-law and president of LivingWaters) Emeal Zwayne in previous posts. I thought it fitting that I finish that trilogy with the third person that joins them on the program, Mark Spence.

I hope this testimony blesses and encourages you, brethren. As always, be good Bereans and study to show yourselves approved.

Thursday Book Review – Religious Affections by Jonathan Edwards


A while back I wrote about Jonathan Edwards testimony, which you can read here, and at the time I was working my way through his treasured work Religious Affections. It took me a little longer to finish this book due to its length, and dutiful use of the Word. It was well worth the read! It was published in 1746, written by the American theologian who helped kick off the first Great Awakening.

One of the best parts about this book is that everything Edwards (October 5, 1703 – March 22, 1758) speaks of he gives multiple verses to back up. This makes reading the book a lot like having a long, edifying, Bible study with the great theologian. It still has so much relevance in the body of Christ today.

I recommend this book to anyone questioning their own affections for Christ, or those that win souls and wish to better judge whether others are in the faith. This book is in the public domain so it’s accessible in pdf form, audible form, Kindle form, or you can purchase your own copy. As always beloved, be good Bereans and study to show yourselves approved.

https://www.ccel.org/ccel/edwards/affections.html