About Me

My photo

I am the Pastor/Teacher of Rivers of Joy Baptist Church in Minford, Ohio since August 2008.  I am married to Charity since June 14, 1969.  I have four grown children.   Having served in the local church for over forty years as Pastor/Teacher, Asso., Youth Pastor, Minister of Education, Building Upkeep, Camp Director, Sunday School Teacher, etc. Also I have worked in the public place for as many years as I have preached. Charity and her sister are co owner of Union Mills Conf. (Bakery) in West Portsmouth Ohio

INERRANCY, EXEGESIS AND EXPOSITION
Part Four
*

Conjectures and Agreements (Postulates and Propositions)

John propose five logically sequential postulates (hypothesize) that introduce and undergird his main propositions: These five ideas also establish the true biblical basis for the doctrine of inerrancy:
  1. GOD IS: (Gen. 1:1, Ps 14, Heb 11:6)
  2. GOD IS TRUE: (Ex 34:6, Num 23:19, Deut 32:4 Psa 25:10, 31:6, Isa 65:16, Jer 10:8: John 14:6, 17:3, Titus 1:2, Heb 6:18 and I John 5:20-21
  3. GOD SPEAKS IN HARMONY WITH HIS NATURE : (Num 23:19, I Sam 15:29; Rom 3:4, 2 Tim 2:13, Titus 1:2 and Heb 6:18)
  4. GOD SPEAKS ONLY TRUTH: (Ps 31:5, 119:43, 142, 151, 160, Prov 30:5, Isa 65:16 John 17:17 and James 1:18.
  5. GOD SPOKE HIS TRUE WORD AS CONSISTENT WITH HIS TRUE NATURE TO BE COMMUNICATED TO PEOPLE (self-evident truth which is illustrated at 2 Tim. 3:16-17 and Heb 1:1

So what are we saying here:


God gave His true Word to be communicated entirely as He gave it. Which means, the whole counsel of God is to be preached. (Matthew 28:20, Acts 5:20 and 20:27.


The whole counsel of God means from Genesis to Revelation. Its God’s counsel that is to be taught, NOT MAN’S, which is generally what we do.


We are to look at the Bible as God’s word and we need then to look at every part of the bible as a whole.
2 God gave His true Word to be communicated exactly as He gave it. It is to be dispensed precisely as it was delivered without the message being altered.


Now this will take some thinking on our part. What does God want us to know about Him and His creation and His Plan for mankind and Himself? Its found in the Word.


Only the exegetical process which yields expository proclamation will accomplish suppositions 1 and 2


God is. And God is truth. What God says is truth. It’s the only 100% truth there is. God only speaks truth. Every word that God speaks in the Bible is Truth because God is., and God is Truth. God could not speak any less then in changeless nature. Thus what the Word says we can be sure its true because God said it. There fore it’s the purpose of the preacher to preach the Word of God as God has had it written down.


Now note much of the preaching you hear (in many of the churches) is not in the Bible. Too often we think that preaching from Ephesians 1:1 to 3 let’s say,+ is not enough for our people to hear if we expect them to be the kind of Christians they could be. He add to the text what we believe is needed to add to their edification.


Where John MacArthur helped me Charity was in this point. Preaching or I like to use the word teaching. Pastor/Teacher I would address my self as. Preaching to my fellow pastors is preaching and teaching is what you do in Sunday School. What they would say about my preaching style is its teaching and not preaching. One preacher said to me, "Bro Charles that was a good lesson you taught to day." He didn’t consider it preaching.


What I learned was to let the Scripture to the teaching for me. So I begin with Matthew on Sunday Morning and Romans on Sunday Evening. What I tried to do was to open the book to Matthew chapter one and see if I could communicate to the people what God was wanting them to hear from the verses.


I didn’t see dancing in Matthew, I didn’t see going to movies was wrong in chapter one. I didn’t see a whole lot of things in chapter one that I had hoped was in there. How was I going to get the people to go soul winning, and come back on Sunday Evening and here me preach from Romans.?

So could I teach the text and then add a little at the end of the sermons? Could I say, "Now here is what I believe God would want us to know about this text as an application? " But it was not in the text at all. I was asking the people to hear something I said rather than what the text said today.


How often have we heard sermons that spoke of things that was not in the text the preacher gave at some point in the sermon? And you are saying, "How did he get that out of Matthew? Well he didn’t he put it there.


My position then became: "IF ITS NOT IN THE TEXT I DON’T SAY IT? And that was very hard at first. Because I had some things I wanted to say, and I couldn’t find it in Matthew or Romans.
Footnote: Charity said I did great preaching (teaching) the text, it was went I thought I needed to say something before I started that got me in trouble. Bad habits were hard to break.


Sometimes I think we don’t really believe in the INERRANCY of Scripture. We sometimes don’t think that it is enough just to preach the text in Matthew. Therefore we don’t preach every verse or chapter in a book of the Bible because we can’t make it say what we want to say.


I believe we need to take the Bible and preach/teach the Bible verse by verse on Sunday Morning in our Worship Hour. Yes on occasion we do take time to teach on a specific topic, and that is quite okay of course.


So did I clear that up at all Charity? Drafted by Charles Whisnant, Proof Read, and tries to agree with my points, but sometimes she has trouble.

*


PREACHING THE BOOK GOD WROTE
HOW I CAME TO UNDERSTAND PREACHING THE BOOK GOD WROTE
part two
*

What is the Biblical Method of DOING CHURCH MINISTRY?
*

Some would say Jerry Falwell was wrong in his methodology. Some would say that Jack Hyles was wrong in his methods. Some would say the "Church Growth Movement" is wrong. Some do not like Rick Warren, or Bill Hybels method of church ministry. Some would say the "Emergent" or "Emerging Movement" is wrong. Some really do not like the Robert Schuller Sr.’s Garden Grove Church’s methods. Some don’t like the Andy Stanley or Ed Young, Jr.’s methods. Nor do they like the Calvary Chapel’s Chuck Smith’s method. As a matter of fact if it’s not the fundamental way, it’s not biblical they say. Or if it’s not the Reformed Church’s method it’s not biblical.
*
IS THERE REALLY A BIBLICA METHOD OF DOING CHURCH GOD’S WAY?
*

Yes, just ask any preacher or pastor.
*
Monday’s Shepherd’s Pulpit Magazine’s article May 28th 2007.
Preaching the Book God Wrote by John MacArthur
*
This article by John MacArthur changed my preaching, in the early 1980's.
*
Fundamentalists learned to preach topically and generally preaching was about the preacher’s experiences and ideas. While always believing the Scriptures were inerrant, the idea of relying on what God said about Himself and His doing and about men in relation to Him was not a logical response to how I was preaching.
*
Then John's articles, (plus the Shepherd's Conferences) brought about this idea of teaching the Word of God book by book. The idea of expository preaching allowed me to say to the church body that I believed in the idea of Biblical inerrancy
*
And the best way to find the church's life and power was in the preaching/teaching of God's Word, chapter by chapter, verse by verse, word by word. Rather than giving the preacher’s experiences, let the Word teach God's truths.
*
IF you believe the Bible is really God's Word and is about Him and His purpose for mankind and His Church, you will allow God's Word alone to be the foundation of your teaching to the church.

John writes: "The theological highlight of 20th Century had to be evangelicalism’s intense focus on the doctrine of biblical inerrancy." Much of what was written defending inerrancy in the 70's and 80's represented the most acute theological reasoning our generation has produced.
  • Paul D. Feinberg states: "The doctrine of biblical inerrancy is "the claim that when all facts are known, the scriptures in their original autographs and properly interpreted will be shown to be without error in all that they affirm to the degree of precision intended, whether that affirmation relates to doctrine, history, science, geography, geology, etc."


John writes: "Yet it seems our practice commitment to inerrancy is somewhat lacking. The modern evangelical’s commitment to the authority and inerrancy of the Bible doesn’t always flesh out in ministry. Shouldn’t our preaching reflect our conviction that God’s Word is infallibly authoritative? Too often, it doesn’t. In fact, there is a discernable trend in contemporary evangelicalism away from biblical preaching, and a corresponding drift toward experience centered, pragmatic, topical messages in the pulpit."

*

John wrote this in the early 1980's, and it seems we are still deep-seated into this kind of preaching, experience centered, pragmatic, topical messages in the pulpit.

*

"How can this be?" John continues: "Shouldn’t our preaching reflect our conviction that the Bible is the verbally inspired, inerrant Word of God? If we believe that ‘all Scripture is inspired by God’ and inerrant, shouldn’t we be equally committed to the truth that it is ‘profitable for teaching, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be equipped for every good work"? 2 Timothy 3:16-17. Shouldn’t that magnificent truth determine how we preach?"


John is right, but I think preachers believe they are preaching the Word of God. Personally, I don’t know any preachers who would say they aren’t preaching the Word of God. But often their preaching of the Word doesn’t reflect 2 Timothy 3:16-17.
Paul gives this mandate to Timothy: 2 Timothy 4:1`-2


I solemnly 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, exhort, with great patience and instruction."


John points out this: "ANY FORM OF PREACHING THAT IGNORES THE INTENDED PURPOSE AND DESIGN OF GOD IS SERIOUSLY DEFICIENT."


J.I. Packer in his book "Preaching As Biblical Interpretation," Inerrancy And Common Sense, (1980)
Preaching appears in the Bible as a relaying of what God has said about Himself and His doings, and about men in relation to Him, plus a pressing of His commands, promises, warnings, and assurances, with a view to winning the hearer or hearers...to a positive response.


Preaching then should reflects God’s commands, and promises, and warnings, etc. Preaching the Word with the view that the word will win the hearers to a positive response.


To have a positive response from the church body then is by the preaching of the Word of God.


Charity is finally finished proof reading my article. She said "Charles at Seminary they taught the bible verse by verse. Dr. Oldham did for sure. Raymond Barber did the Old Testament also. They taught the bible verse by verse yes. But preaching andteaching to them were two different ideal. Teaching the Bible book by book was for the Sunday School, and Preaching was to be topical.


PREACHING THE BOOK GOD WROTE
HOW I CAME TO UNDERSTAND PREACHING THE BOOK GOD WROTE
*
Part One

*

I don’t know if I get in more trouble saying, "My friend Jerry Falwell," or saying, "I read everything John MacArthur writes and listen to his sermons. "How can I say both names in the same breath you say?" It’s like saying I liked both Dale Earnhardt, Sr. and Jeff Gordon in NASCAR. With that said, I have learned a lot from both men and their ministries. It’s a good thing I don’t say I like Billy Graham. (I like Billy Graham.) I learned from my dad, early in life, you don’t talk about Jerry Falwell, or Billy Graham, or J. Frank Norris and other men of God.) Dad would stop you in your tracks. Whether or not dad approved of them or not he just would not engage in negative talk about them.

*
I must say that the first church I pastored was influenced by the Super Conferences at Thomas Road Baptist Church and Jerry Falwell. I really do not regret that part of our ministry, and there are still some good things that came out of that ministry.
*
I think the idea of the Super Conferences were about church ministry and how to get people to come to the church. They taught how to have a good bus ministry, a good children’s ministry, an adult ministry, and all that is involved in reaching people for Christ.
*
As a result, most of my preaching was involved in trying to get people in the church to buy into the idea of having a church that is reaching people for Christ. Sermons were designed to get members stirred up to go out into the community and get people to come to church. My sermons were designed to get members to be Sunday School teachers, drive a church bus, be a youth worker. I was trying to get the members to reach more people every week to get a good attendance on Sunday. "Let’s build our Sunday School" was the idea, and the best way of doing this was by preaching. Preaching was about getting people to do what I thought they should be doing. *
*
I remember one sermon was about "Bus Ministry in the Bible." I used a passage in the New Testament to illustrate that Jesus wanted us to have a bus to get people to church. "And they brought them to Jesus." Sounded good, and we did have a church member to start a bus ministry
*
I believed the Bible teaches evangelism. I believe Christians are to be involved in reaching people, and I believe the church body should grow. Thus, I was preaching with that purpose in mind.
*
I believed that Christians should live in holiness. Christians should reflect Christ-likeness. And I was good preaching the Law. (Maybe Charles’s law!) I was good, I thought, in telling Christians how to live like Christ. I believed I was Biblical. I believed what I was saying was Biblical in principle.
*
Many fundamental preachers believe they have the responsibility to get their members to serve the local church, have the largest attendance, have the most people saved and baptized, and build the biggest buildings in town. The way they do that is to motivate the members unto good works. The means and methods of churchology differentiates from church to church to accomplish their hope for results.
*
"We would like to see our attendance climb this year 100 people. We would like to see 50 people come to Christ this year. We would like to see a new building that would seat 500 people. We would like to see five new bus routes. And we would like to see 100 teens in our youth ministry."
*
Personally, I do not see having a vision as being wrong. I do not see setting some goals for the church as being wrong. Having a desire to see the church grow in attendance, seeing people saved and baptized, seeing Christians grow in grace and Christ-likeness is good. What I see as error in thinking is saying,"Let’s just see what God is going to do this year," and then sit back and do nothing and just wait for God to do something. That is missing the point, I believe.
*
The issue is how we DO CHURCH MINISTRY AND HOW WE PREACH TO ACCOMPLISH GOD’S PURPOSE FOR THE CHURCH AND HIS CHURCH BODY OF SAINTS.
*

Drafted by Charles and an argument from Charity May 28, 2007
FIVE FOUNDATIONAL TRUTHS - FIVE NON-NEGOTIABLES
IN CHURCH MINISTRY
*
In the Pulpit Magazine today, John MacArthur gives us five foundational truths that a church should be committed to. In 1983 my first Shepherd's Conference, I learned of these five negotiables for the first time. I came back to the church I was pastoring at the time and talked to our men about these foundational truths. From that year on we begin to work from these principles in doing ministry.
*
As a matter of fact, the ministry of our church was formed by the principles that we learned from the Shepherd's Conference. I can testify that these principles work. In applying these principles they will bring about an authentic church. I can say after twenty five years later, the believers in that church are authentic Christians.
*
THE FIVE NON - NEGOTIABLES: FOUNDATIONAL PRINCIPLES
*

1. A HIGH VIEW OF GOD

2 THE ABSOLUTE AUTHORITY OF SCRIPTURE

3 SOUND DOCTRINE

4 PERSONAL HOLINESS

5 SPIRITUAL AUTHORITY

THOUSANDS ATTEND JERRY FALWELL FUNERAL
*
Evangelical leaders turn out, but elected officials scarce.
By Andrea Stone: USA Today Wednesday May 23, 2007
* * * * *
Lynchburg, VA. - The black-clad mourners began arriving at 5 a.m., the line stretching for nerly a quarter-mile. They had come to say goodbye to Jerry Falwell, the folksy Southern Baptist minister whose Moral Mojority changed the face of American politics.
*
To them, he was just their spiritual guide.
*
"He was a great, great preacher and he preached theword of God," said Elizabeth Enns, 24, a Lynchburg nurse who graduated from Falwell's Liberty University and brought her 1-year old son, Landon, to the funeral.
*
Falwell, who died of heart failure lasst week at 73 (May 15th) never shield from giving his opinion on moral issues. And that, said Franklin Graham, was what made this "prophet of our generation" divisive.
*
"He believed in the Gospel, That's controversial," said Graham son of of evangelist Billy Graham. "He believed in marriage as a union between a man and a woman. That's controversial."
*
Falwell "was not just some preacher who thought he would dabble in politics. He understood that Christians have a right in this country to be heard." said Jerry Vines, who gave the sermon. "He was criticized and he was villifed and he was unfairly misquoted, but he just kept on smiling and ke kept on speaking the message of morality and the glorious message of Jesus Christ to our culture. And the political landscape of America has been different since that day."
*
About 7,000 people squeezed into Falwell's Thomas Road Baptist Church. An additional 2,000 spilled into Liberty's basketball arena and its football stadium.
More than 33,000 had viewed Falwell's body over four days as it lay in repose.
Falwell spend nearly his entire life in this small town in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, but this was no ordinary country preacher's funeral. Schools closed early. Helicipters, hovered as 17 agencies, including Liberty University's own police department, provided security and kept an eye on protesters:
*
Mourners, were given a funeral program that included photos of Falwell on his wedding day, kneeling in prayer and being lifted on the shoulders of Liberty University students. Of the dozen photos, only one hinted of his national fame: Falwell with President Regan, the first national Republican his consdervative Moal Mojority political group helped elect.
*
A video traced the start of Falwell's congregation in 1956 in an old bottling plant to its growth into one of the first megachurches, with 24,000 members; his creation that same year of the Old Time Gospel Hour; and his founding in 1971 of his Christian university, which now has 125,000 alumni.
*
Most of the images of Falwell with national leaders dated from the 1970's and 1980's, when he was at the height of his influence.
*
A generation after he ended evangelicals' wariness about getting involved in politics, there was a noticeable dearth of public figures at his funeral. No 2008 Republican presidential candidates were in the church. Among the former GOP presidential hopefuls, who attended were Alan Keyes, Gary Bauer, and former senator George Allen of Virginia.
*
Republican leaders in Washington said congressional voting kept senators and House members from making the three-hour drive to Lynchburg.
*
Tim Goegiein, the president's liaison to religious conservatives, was not listed in the program but spoke briefly. He called Falwell "a great friend of this administration. A force of nature." He said that in a conversation a month ago, the minister was thankful for being able to train "a new generation" of Christian conservatives, many of whom now work in the Bush administration.
*
Joleen Sharp, 19, a Liberty senior who hopes to attend its law school, said, she expected Falwell's legacy to be felt for years. "There are professionals going in all areas who, once they graduate, are going to be very influntia," she said, holding a Bible.
*
Many at the funeral recalled an approachable, good-humored pastor, not a lightning rod on issues like abortion and gay rights.
*
"Those who did not know him or didn't go to his church didn't know the real Dr. Falwell," said Sabrina Ugron, 36, a Lyncbhurg computer technician who was married by Falwell, who also married her parents. "The real Dr. Falwell was personable, caring, loving, generous, dedicated and a lot of fun. He was funny."
*
Gary Thompson, 43, of Rustburg, VA met Falwell only a couple of times since joining the church in 2000, but he took a vacation day from his heating and air conditioning job to attend the funeral. He said he will always remember "his charism, his unwavering principles on the Bible and sticking up for the truth of God's word."
*
If elected officials were in short supply for the man who shephered Christians to the polls, the funeral presented a who's who of evangelicals.
*
At the end of the 9- minute service, 10 pallbearers wheeled Falwell's black, gold-trimmed coffin to a hearse. The procession passed by a giant "LU" carved atop the mountain Falwell rechristened for his university and took him to a private burial on the grounds of his Christian campus.
  • I typed this from the USA newspaper. I could hardly keep my emotions while typing this. Say what you will about Jerry Falwell, but if its not good, do not talk to me about it. I will not address what you didn't like about him, or about what he did in this life.
  • Charity and I and my mom (Pauline Whisnant) and sister Ellen and her son sat down with him and his wife for dinner April 15, 2007 at O'Charlie's and he and Macel were two gracious, loving, people we have been around in some time. The above article was well and correctly written.

Charles E Whisnant,

DR. JERRY FALWELL AND DR. JOHN MacARTHUR, JR
Today was the Funeral of Jerry Falwell
I have been in a dialog with Jim over at OldTruth.Com about the Church Growth Movement and the Megachurch methods of doing ministry.
Jim writes:
"As far as TRBC is concerned, I don't want to argue this out on the heels of Jerry Falwell's death. He truly was a good defender of the Gospel on TV, as I acknowledged in an earlier post. But in the end there is only so far I can go in giving a man accolades who essentially defined such men to be heretics as Spurgeon, Edwards, Whitefield, the Puritans, and the founders of the SBC. Charles, those are *your* beliefs that he spoke of as being a heresy as well, and I think if you were as aggressive in fighting wrong ideas from TRBC as you have been in your objections here on Old Truth over the past several weeks, you would come across as being more consistent. Some of your points on large churches are valid, but I think TRBC is far from being a good model for us." Jim at Old Truth

What would I consider the wrong ideas from TRBC?

I really am trying to make a rather serious point without being ungracious or obstinate.
I have no objections with the discussions on Old Truth.

Every church is viewed by another group of churches as been "heretics" and teaching heresy. I have to defend all the time John MacArthur’s position on "the blood of Christ."

I listen to preachers often about how he is wrong on "Lordship Salvation," and his position on Revelation. Even the other day someone said he holds one position on music and then allows it in the Youth ministry. Of course, he has never called a group of people "heretics" for believing in the Reformed Covenant Positions. I personally hold to the positions that John MacArthur holds, thus I don’t think he is a heretic.

With that said, you might say, "How can you mention TRBC and Grace Community Church in the same breath?" Do they have anything in common with each other that would make them look like they are alike?

John MacArthur said at the Shepherd’s Conference in 2007 "Every Reformed Calvinist should not be a Amillennialist" He further asserted that, of all people, Calvinists should be the most enthusiastic about premillennialism. And Jerry Falwell said, those who believe in Calvinism are teaching heresy. And he said we do not teach that here at Liberty, but I know too many people at Liberty and teachers at Liberty who do believe and teach the doctrine of grace.

Both John and Jerry preached on the danger of the Emerging Church Movement.

Both have Sunday School, both have only a Sunday Morning Worship Service ( not Saturday night), both have Sunday Evening Service. Both do not have the Lord’s Supper every Sunday. Both are on TV and Radio. Both agree on Israel and the Revelation. Both have the same position on the Bible.

Everywhere they go to speak they have men who travel with them, maybe not body guards but they make sure they are protected. They both have a College/University.

Now with all that said, would I rather go to Grace or TRBC? Would I rather hear John or Jerry preach? Would I rather send my students to Liberty or the Master’s College? I am glad there are more than two choices. Would I pattern my ministry after Jerry’s or John’s? Do I like Eldership over Congregational Rule, or Pastor/Deacon Rule? Do I teach regeneration before faith, or faith before regeneration?

Is a church not biblical if they do not have Eldership Policy? Is a church biblically wrong if the pastor does not preach expositionally? Is a church biblically wrong if the pastor gives a open invitation to come to Christ? Is a pastor wrong if he has a body guard? (Jack Hyles had one every time he was in the church). Is the church wrong if they don’t have the Lord’s Supper every Sunday. What if the pastor does not teach out of the KJV? And what if the church allows Southern Gospel Singers to sing on Sunday, is that biblically wrong? Do I prefer one over the other? Very much so. Do I think both are wrong, no?

John or Jerry don’t cuss when they preach. They don’t drink beer when they go out to eat. When they preach they always wear a suit and a tie. They both believe in the total authority of Scripture.

One is a Fundamentalist and the other is Evangelical. Would I do all that either one does?
In the first place, I couldn’t attempt to do what the Lord has allowed them to do.

Who is to say that there are more unbelievers in one of their churches. My wife said, "Charles, the way you teach about salvation, do you believe any member of our church is really born again?" How many in our churches have made decisions for Christ and are really superficial Christians? Spurgeon was afraid a lot of those were in the Tabernacle.

Could I mention in the same breath Dan Kimbell and Perry Noble with John Piper and Mark Dever? Don’t ask Phil Johnson that question.

My wife said, "Charles, you find fault with something in about every church you attend, is there any church you really like? Charles


Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant May 22, 2007 The Funeral of Jerry Fallwell Today at Lynchburg VA

BUT THERE’S GROWTH AND THERE’S GROWTH

It is hard for pastors NOT to be mesmerized by church growth. Who doesn’t want their church congregation to grow? I would love to preach to 500 rather than 50 anytime on Sunday. Who doesn’t want to see numbers and budgets increasing year by year? And who isn’t greatly interested when the latest growth model comes along–the latest research, the latest insight that promises us the key to such growth? If the pastor is worth his salt he is interested (my opinion only).

But there’s growth and there’s growth.

I am going to relate my history of learning about how church growth was related to me over the years.

For every example of a church that is larger for the wrong reason, I could give you an example of a small church (less than an hundred) that is small for the wrong reasons. What’s my point?
So what are the points in which a larger church can be biblically larger and a smaller church being biblically small?

I don’t know many pastors/elders who set out to see that their church does not grow.

We are sitting in a Seminary class room: Church Building 101. I am sitting in Christian Education at Hyles Anderson College. How Should Church Ministry Be? I go to the Super Conference at Thomas Road Baptist Church, in Lynchburg, Virginia: "Building a Bus/Children’s Ministry." Of course, there were a number of conferences. The Pastor’s School at Hammond, Indiana. "How To GO Soul-Winning." Only to name a few Bible/Church conferences I have attended over the years. Hyles/Falwell/Roberson/Rice/Malone/ I could mention others.
Footnote: Tom Malone, Lee Roberson and Jerry Falwell have died this year 2007

Young preachers coming out of independent Baptist schools have a desire to serve the Lord. We were Baptist only preachers, who did not know Reformed preachers existed. (1947-1980).

Now in those days, starting a church in a town was what preachers were encouraged to do. You would go to a town, find a building and then start knocking on doors inviting people to come visit the new church. Sometimes you also inviting them to come to Christ. There were many preachers who did just that.

Today in those same Seminaries and Colleges, they still teach the same idea of Church Ministry.

I don’t remember if in any of those classes the point was "How To Build A Church of 1000 People." We believed if we did what we were taught, we would have a church of a 1000.

Of course more of us never saw 500 in our churches. Of course, that was so disappointing to us. We had yet to learn why we were pastors/teachers, I think.

I never went to a Pastor’s/Church Conference where that local church had 200 in attendance. Can you imagine going to a Church Conference where the attendance was 50 in Sunday School?

You were always challenged to go back to your church and town and build a church like theirs.

I remember being in Hyles-Anderson College and First Baptist Church, and I left to go pastor a church in Altoona, Kansas, the First Baptist Church, on Main Street. I was rather excited that first Sunday. The church building was the size of one of the Sunday School classes at Hammond. The town had a total of about 500 people. I had to have a mindset adjustment.

I had seen 20,000 people come to church on one Sunday, and the next Sunday there were only 12,000 in the whole 40 square mile county!. I had to have an alignment in my brain cells. I could leave this town and church or find a way to do ministry in a different way.

My mindset adjustment came when I attended my first Shepherd’s Conference at Grace Community Church. The Conference in 1983 and in 1990 took only 250 men in those years. I remember that first year and in the first session, the speaker said, "If you are here to learn how to build a larger church you are in the wrong conference." I said, "Did I come to the wrong conference? This is why I am here-- to learn to build a large church." Grace Community was a very large church. So what was the point of coming to this Conference?.

The main idea of the Shepherd’s Conference was this. How To Be A Godly Pastor/Teacher. The idea was not how to build a large church but how to have a church ministry that is pleasing to the Lord. What kind of Church ministry does the Lord teach that we should have?
You be the kind of person you should be, you do the kind of ministry that the Lord has called you to do, you preach/teach the way the Lord called you to do it, and then you allow the Lord to do the rest in the place you are called to minister. Oh! That works!!

So I went back to Altoona, Kansas thinking "Oh, this is what kind of person I should be, doing this kind of ministry, and then we will see what the Lord will do!" I can tell you that was scarey. Because my mindset about ministry was nothing like what I had learned at the Shepherd’s Conference. From Jack Hyles/.Jerry Falwell to John MacArthur, are you kidding!

First I had to change my idea of what kind of preaching I should do. Hyles or MacArthur? What kind of ministry should we have. Soul Winning or Church Discipleship? You mean no more contests to see how many we could get to come to Sunday School! You mean no more giving away hats to kids to ride the bus? What would the church become? And maybe we would never have 1000 in Sunday School. (Let alone 200).

The primary focus may not have been on "numbers" but you desired to see new people come to the church. You were there in that town with a purpose, and since in Altoona, there were only three churches in the first place, we were interested in reaching people with the Word .

I think the difference in my mindset was this: The purpose of the local church was for the discipling of believers, for the fellowship of believers, and the worshiping of believers. So what we did on the inside of the church was for believers.

My focus as a pastor/teacher became the teaching of the Word of God, and the training of believers in the church. The focus was off getting a crowd, and on building believers up to do the work of the ministry: (Ephesians 4:12-16).

Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant and Proof Checked by Charity Whisnant May 21, 2007

BUT THERE’S GROWTH AND THERE’S GROWTH



It is hard for pastors NOT to be mesmerized by church growth. Who doesn’t want their church congregation to grow? I would love to preach to 500 rather than 50 anytime on Sunday. Who doesn’t want to see numbers and budgets increasing year by year? And who isn’t greatly interested when the latest growth model comes along–the latest research, the latest insight that promises us the key to such growth? If the pastor is worth his salt he is interested (my opinion only).


But there’s growth and there’s growth.


I am going to relate my history of learning about how church growth was related to me over the years.


For every example of a church that is larger for the wrong reason, I could give you an example of a small church (less than an hundred) that is small for the wrong reasons. What’s my point?
So what are the points in which a larger church can be biblically larger and a smaller church being biblically small?


I don’t know many pastors/elders who set out to see that their church does not grow.


We are sitting in a Seminary class room: Church Building 101. I am sitting in Christian Education at Hyles Anderson College. How Should Church Ministry Be? I go to the Super Conference at Thomas Road Baptist Church, in Lynchburg, Virginia: "Building a Bus/Children’s Ministry." Of course, there were a number of conferences. The Pastor’s School at Hammond, Indiana. "How To GO Soul-Winning." Only to name a few Bible/Church conferences I have attended over the years. Hyles/Falwell/Roberson/Rice/Malone/ I could mention others.

Footnote: Tom Malone, Lee Roberson and Jerry Falwell have died this year 2007
2008 -2011 There has been not number growth.

Young preachers coming out of independent Baptist schools have a desire to serve the Lord. We were Baptist only preachers, who did not know Reformed preachers existed. (1947-1980).
Now in those days, starting a church in a town was what preachers were encouraged to do. You would go to a town, find a building and then start knocking on doors inviting people to come visit the new church. Sometimes you also inviting them to come to Christ. There were many preachers who did just that.
Today in those same Seminaries and Colleges, they still teach the same idea of Church Ministry.

I don’t remember if in any of those classes the point was "How To Build A Church of 1000 People." We believed if we did what we were taught, we would have a church of a 1000.

Of course more of us never saw 500 in our churches. Of course, that was so disappointing to us. We had yet to learn why we were pastors/teachers, I think.

I never went to a Pastor’s/Church Conference where that local church had 200 in attendance. Can you imagine going to a Church Conference where the attendance was 50 in Sunday School?



You were always challenged to go back to your church and town and build a church like theirs.
I remember being in Hyles-Anderson College and First Baptist Church, and I left to go pastor a church in Altoona, Kansas, the First Baptist Church, on Main Street. I was rather excited that first Sunday. The church building was the size of one of the Sunday School classes at Hammond. The town had a total of about 500 people. I had to have a mindset adjustment.

I had seen 20,000 people come to church on one Sunday, and the next Sunday there were only 12,000 in the whole 40 square mile county!. I had to have an alignment in my brain cells. I could leave this town and church or find a way to do ministry in a different way.


My mindset adjustment came when I attended my first Shepherd’s Conference at Grace Community Church. The Conference in 1983 and in 1990 took only 250 men in those years. I remember that first year and in the first session, the speaker said, "If you are here to learn how to build a larger church you are in the wrong conference." I said, "Did I come to the wrong conference? This is why I am here-- to learn to build a large church." Grace Community was a very large church. So what was the point of coming to this Conference?.

The main idea of the Shepherd’s Conference was this. How To Be A Godly Pastor/Teacher. The idea was not how to build a large church but how to have a church ministry that is pleasing to the Lord. What kind of Church ministry does the Lord teach that we should have?

You be the kind of person you should be, you do the kind of ministry that the Lord has called you to do, you preach/teach the way the Lord called you to do it, and then you allow the Lord to do the rest in the place you are called to minister. Oh! That works!!

So I went back to Altoona, Kansas thinking "Oh, this is what kind of person I should be, doing this kind of ministry, and then we will see what the Lord will do!" I can tell you that was scarey. Because my mindset about ministry was nothing like what I had learned at the Shepherd’s Conference. From Jack Hyles/.Jerry Falwell to John MacArthur, are you kidding!


First I had to change my idea of what kind of preaching I should do. Hyles or MacArthur? What kind of ministry should we have. Soul Winning or Church Discipleship? You mean no more contests to see how many we could get to come to Sunday School! You mean no more giving away hats to kids to ride the bus? What would the church become? And maybe we would never have 1000 in Sunday School. (Let alone 200).

The primary focus may not have been on "numbers" but you desired to see new people come to the church. You were there in that town with a purpose, and since in Altoona, there were only three churches in the first place, we were interested in reaching people with the Word .

I think the difference in my mindset was this: The purpose of the local church was for the discipling of believers, for the fellowship of believers, and the worshiping of believers. So what we did on the inside of the church was for believers.

My focus as a pastor/teacher became the teaching of the Word of God, and the training of believers in the church. The focus was off getting a crowd, and on building believers up to do the work of the ministry: (Ephesians 4:12-16).

Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant and Proof Checked by Charity Whisnant May 21, 2007

CHRISTIAN APOLOGETICS


HERE ARE A FEW STATEMENTS THAT ADDRESS THE APPROACH TO CHRISTIAN APOLOGETICS


  • A brief analysis of the relationship of faith and understanding in evangelism, and a look a several ineffective approaches and seven aggressive steps to effective evangelism.

  • A brief summary of factors determining whether the manuscript evidence for the Old and New Testament books is sound, or highly embellished and corrupted over time and transmission. How reliable are the texts of both Testaments we now have?

  • Barrow and Tipler's attempt to stave off the inference to divine design by appealing to the Weak Anthropic Principle is demonstrably logically fallacious unless one conjoins to it the metaphysical hypothesis of a World Ensemble. But there is no reason for such a postulate. Their misgivings about the alternative of divine design are shown to be of little significance.

    Is there a man in human history who claimed to be God and backed up those claims? Has any man ever conquered death and risen from the dead? This article looks at the claims and life of Jesus Christ. Who was he? What did he do?
  • It has been argued on the basis of Paul's testimony that Jesus's resurrection body was spiritual in the sense of being unextended, immaterial, intangible, and so forth. But neither the argument appealing to the nature of Paul's Damascus Road experience nor the argument from Paul's doctrine of the resurrection body supports such a conclusion
  • On the contrary, Paul's information serves to confirm the gospels' narratives of Jesus's bodily resurrection. Not only is the gospels? physicalism well-founded, but it is also, like Paul's doctrine, a nuance physicalism.
  • In order to effectively communicate the gospel, it is important to build bridges to lost people where they are, by seeking to understand them and share the gospel in a way that is meaningful to THEM rather than to US.

    If life after death cannot be proved scientifically, is it then intellectually irresponsible to accept it? Only if you assume that it is intellectually irresponsible to accept anything that cannot be proved scientifically.


    Quentin Smith has recently argued that (I) the universe began to exist and (II) its beginning was uncaused. In support of (II), he argues that (i) there is no reason to think that the beginning was caused by God and (ii) it is unreasonable to think so. I dispute both claims. His case for (i) misconstrues the causal principle, appeals to false analogies of ex nihilo creation, fails to show how the origin of the universe ex nihilo is naturally plausible, and reduces to triviality by construing causality as predictability in principle. His case for (ii) ignores important epistemological questions and fails to show either that vacuum fluctuation models are empirically plausible or that they support his second claim.
  • For making sense of any of the modern ideologies, nothing works better than identifying its view of creation. One's view of ultimate origins shapes the rest of one's thinking, as Nancy Pearcey shows in this catalog of Worldviews, published in Boundless (December 1999 ) and based on her new book "How Now Shall We Live?" (coauthored by Chuck Colson).


    Recent discussions have raised the issue of the metaphysical implications of standard Big Bang cosmology. Grunbaum's argument that the causal principle cannot be applied to the origin of the universe rests on a pseudo-dilemma, since the cause could act neither before nor after t=0, but at t=0. Levy-Leblond's advocacy of a remetrication of cosmic time to push the singularity to - involves various conceptual difficulties and is in any case unavailing, since the universe's beginning is not eliminated. Maddox's aversion to the possible metaphysical implications of the standard model evinces a narrow scientism. Standard Big Bang cosmogony does therefore seem to have those metaphysical implications which some have found so discomfiting.


    Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant and Proof Checked by Charity Whisnant, on Mother’s Day May 13th 2007




    /
MY GOOD FRIEND ALL MY LIFE DR. JERRY FALWELL HAS DIED AT THE AGE OF 73 IN LYNCHBURG VIRGINIA.
May 15th 2007
Charity and I and my mother and sister Ellen and and her son Stephen just had dinner with Jerry and his lovely wife on my mothers 85th birthday on April 15, 2007
Charles
I will post again on Friday. Time to reflect upon the lost of our good friend. We are praying and thinking about the Falwell family. Mrs. Falwell and the children and their family and grandchildren.
Jerry was given 50 years of ministry at Thomas Road Baptist Church, that was a real blessing. He started and died the same, working for the Lord. Every day and every moment he serviced the Lord. The Lord used Jerry to provide the encouragement for me to serve the Lord with all my ability.
CHRISTIAN APOLOGETICS
PART ONE

What apologetics is not: "I think the way this article was framed is a bit sensational, and does a disservice to the body of Christ." This is from a person who has little skill of making a cogent persuasive statement. That was only a remark that is meant to express a loud comment against something.

Throughout the history of the church, Christians have been called upon to explain why we believe what we believe. The apostle Paul spoke of his ministry as "the defense and confirmation of the gospel." Peter said we need to "be ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you."


This activity of the church came to be known as apologetics which means "defense." But, if it is important that we defend the faith, how do we do it?

DEFINITION:

a.pol.o.get.ics

  • n. (used with a sing. verb)
  • The branch of theology that is concerned with defending or proving the truth of Christian doctrines.
  • Formal argumentation in defense of something, such as a position or system.


What is apologetics, anyway, and what is it supposed to do? Apologetics has been defined as "the science and art of defending the faith." It is expressly concerned with the question of the truth of Jesus Christ. In the days of the Greeks, when someone was summoned to court to face a charge, he would present an "apology" or a defense. For Christians, this might mean answering the question, "Why do you believe that Jesus is God?" or a question more often heard today, "Why do you think Christians have the truth?"

  • So, apologetics is first of all defense. It has come to include more than just defense, however. Not only is the truth of our beliefs an issue, but also the beliefs others hold.
  • A second task of apologetics is to challenge other people to defend their beliefs.
  • A third task of apologetics is to demonstrate a case for the truth of the biblical message.

One might call this task "establish" Christianity (although the matter of proof must be qualified). If this seems to be too ambitious a goal, we might speak simply of influencing people of the truth of the biblical message.


Apologetics is typically a reaction to a specific question or encounter, either stated outright or just implied.

  • Paul reasoned with the Jews for whom the cross was a stumbling block, "explaining and giving evidence that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead." In the second century, apologists defended not only Christian beliefs but also Christians themselves against such charges as atheism and worldview . In the Medieval era, more attention was given to the challenges of Judaism and Islam. In the era of the Enlightenment, apologists had to defend Christianity against the narrow confines of scientific rationalism. Today the challenge has shifted again, this time from attacks on specific doctrines to the question of whether Christianity has any claim to final truth at all.


A QUESTION THAT SHOULD BE ANSWERED APOLOGETIC:


"I'd like to know why you assume God is the answer to everything. Some of these people don't want to hear all this stuff about Jesus. Did you ever think that maybe the reason that some kids want to commit suicide is because of the pressure put on them concerning religion? People are constantly pushing others to believe in God... that's wrong... that's a sin. What good is it gonna do to convert people. I say leave them be. There is nothing wrong with people's beliefs. What would make me happy is if people would stop trying to convince me that there is a God... There isn't in my opinion... and I am very happy without a God. So, maybe you should look at that perspective as well."

Understanding how to think properly, or logically, is important for Christians for several reasons.

  • It helps us put together the various pieces of our faith to form a cohesive whole.
  • It helps us make decisions in everyday life when the Bible doesn't speak directly to a particular issue.
  • We must learn to deduce true beliefs or proper courses of action from what we do know from Scripture.


    Good, logical thinking is especially important for an apologist. On the one hand, it can help prevent us from putting together careless arguments for what we believe. On the other hand, it helps us measure the beliefs of those who challenge Christianity. Too often we stumble at criticisms which sound good, but which really stand on logically shaky legs.

This task is one what we need to work on all the time in our presentation of any sermon we preach or any paper we write.

Every sermon we preach is designed to be stated in a apoligetic form. To give a reason why we believe the text.

Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant, Proof Checked by Charity Whisnant

/Apologetics
Pearl of Wisdom "Nobody ever says, 'I think I will lie to myself today.' This is the double treachery of self-deception: First we deceive ourselves, and then we convince ourselves that we are not deceiving ourselves." - Lewis Smedes

THE TERM APOLOGETICS IN THE CLASSICAL GREEK

The term apologetics etymologically derives from the Classical Greek word apologia. In the Classical Greek legal system two key technical terms were employed: the prosecution delivered the kategoria and the defendant replied with an apologia. To deliver an apologia then meant making a formal speech to reply and rebut the charges, as in the case of Socrates' defense.

This Classical Greek term appears in the Koine (i.e. common) Greek of the New Testament. The Apostle Paul employs the term apologia in his trial speech to Festus and Agrippa when he says "I make my defense" (Acts 26:2). A cognate term appears in Paul's Letter to the Philippians as he is "defending the gospel" (Acts 1:7 & 17), and in 1 Peter 3:15 believers must be ready to give an "answer" for their faith. The word also appears in the negative in Romans 1:20: unbelievers are (anapolog‘etoi) (without excuse, defense, or apology) for rejecting the revelation of God in creation.

The legal nuance of apologetics was reframed in a more specific sense to refer to the study of the defense of a doctrine or belief. In this context it most commonly refers to philosophical reconciliation. Religious apologetics is the effort to show that the preferred faith is not irrational, that believing in it is not against human reason, and that in fact the religion contains values and promotes ways of life more in accord with human nature than other faiths or beliefs
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apologetics

What has been your approach as an apologetic in defending
..."ALWAYS be prepared to give a reason for the hope that you have..."
1 Peter 3:15

Are you prepared to give the reasons for your faith, as commanded by the Lord?
If you're at all like I used to be, you may be intimidated by the secular culture, which views the Christian Faith as a blind leap and Christians as simple-minded and shallow. Despite growing up in the faith, I always had hard questions, and slowly began to accept the secularist premise that I had to 'shut off my brain' as I went into church.

But instead of withdrawing or giving up, I began an in-depth study of the field of Christian Apologetics - the Defenses of the Faith. The best defenses of the faith is to know the Word of God. What I mean by knowing the Word of God is to study the text verse by verse, chapter by chapter, book by book, from Genesis to Revelation.

Now some just want to vociferate what they believe, but not really say much about the subject, sort of like Al Sharpton. Then there are the Francis Schaeffer’s, C.S. Lewis, and then John MacArthur ,Jr.
  • Of course I like Francis Schaeffer and primarily I like John MacArthur Jr. The best defense of the faith is the Scripture. Now that sounds so Biblical. The task though is anything but easy.
    "Love the Lord with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment." Matthew 22:37-38

Have you wanted to study these issues, but just didn't know where to begin? I have been compiling a comprehensive overview of the Christian Faith, some 40 major doctrinal subjects - what we believe and why

Are You Ready To Lead A Group Toward Greater Christian Understanding and Maturity?

The great Philosopher of Religion William Lane Craig described the task succinctly:
"We should know our subject profoundly and share it simply."

The first step in a more confident and mature faith is trust in the Spirit, followed by a regimented program of education and study - this course sets the framework for just that, and enables the teacher to teach with proven and well documented materials. This way we carry on Paul's mandate from the Lord to relay the knowledge of the things of God and:
"...entrust to reliable men who will be qualified to teach others."
2 Timothy 2:2

So, finally, with Paul, we can:
"We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ"
2 Corinthians 10:5

Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant, and Proof Checked by Charity Whisnant
ROMAN CATHOLIC DEFINITION OF JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH
  • Francis J. Beckwith was president of the Evangelical Theological Society (2007). JETS is the Theological Journal that I have read for years. This month Mr. Beckwith resigned from the ETS. He "was received into full communion with the Roman Catholic Church."

I have been studying for some time the doctrine of "Justification by Faith, and by Faith Alone" Monergism.com has provided 135 Essays, 67 Sermons, 44 Roman Catholic teaching on Justification. And I have been reading "The Doctrine of Justification: An Outline of its History in the Church and of its Exposition from Scripture" by James Buchanan.

My point in this study is to understand the means whereby we are Born Again, or Saved. Can the Roman Catholic say they believe salvation by the very same means the Fundamentalist say, the Reformed folks say, and the Evangelical people say?

Mr. Beckwith believes that the means by which the Roman Catholic are saved is the same way all other churches believe people are born again. (?)

Today I will look briefly into the Roman Catholic idea of "Infusion of Grace that brings justification."

THE ROMAN CATHOLIC INFUSION OF GRACE THAT BRINGS JUSTIFICATION

"Let it therefore remain settled...that we are justified in no other way than by faith, or, which comes to this same thing, that we are justified by faith alone."- John Calvin

SCRIPTURE ALONE, NOT SCRIPTURE PLUS TRADITION:

"Rome professes to hold that the Bible is the Word of God...she also nullifies or destroys the Word. She maintains that alongside of the written Word there is also an unwritten Word, an oral tradition, which was taught by Christ and the apostles but which is not in the Bible, which was handed down generation after generation by word of mouth. This unwritten Word of God, it is said, comes to expression in the pronouncements of the church councils and in papal decrees. It takes precedence over the written Word and interprets it. The pope, as God's personal representative on the earth, can legislate for things additional to the Bible as new situations arise. The Council of Trent, the most authoritative of all Roman councils and the one of greatest historical importance, in the year 1546, declared that the Word of God is contained both in the Bible and in tradition, that the two are equal authority, and that it is the duty of every Christian to accord them equal veneration and respect."- Loraine Boettner

THE COUNCIL OF TRENT 1546-1564
Because of Rome's doctrine of Semper Idem, Rome cannot repudiate or correct Trent. The council's sixth session teaches Rome's view of Justification, set forth in response to the Protestant teaching. Rome set forth the importance and necessity of grace by salvation. Also the necessity of faith:
"We are therefore said to be justified by faith, because faith is the beginning of human salvation, the foundation and root of all justification, without which it is impossible to please God and to come to the fellowship of His sons; and we are therefore said to be justified gratuitously, because none of those things precede justification, whether faith or works, merit the grace of justification." {Council of Trent: VI Session; Chapter VIII}
1) Justification is by faith (per fidem), 2) Faith is the "beginning" (initium) of salvation, 3) Faith is the "foundation" (fundamentum) of all justification, and 4) Faith is the "root" (radix) of all justification.
There is an agreement on "faith" with the Reformers, but an exclusion of "alone" from Rome's teaching. Rome believes in "justification by faith", but not "justification by faith alone." According to the reformers, faith is the instrumental cause ("by"), or the means by which Christ's work is appropriated.

INTRODUCTION TO THE SACRAMENTS

Reformers contend for two sacraments: Baptism and the Lord's Supper- the Roman Catholic Church celebrates seven: Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance, Extreme Unction, Holy Order, and Matrimony. Roman Theology, contrasted to Reformed Theology, teaches that the Sacraments remove sins: "...supernatural life is generated by Baptism; brought to growth by Confirmation; nourished by the Eucharist; cured from diseases of sins and from the weakness arising from these by Penance and Extreme Unction."- Ludwig Ott, Roman Catholic Theologian. The sacraments work ex opere operato, by the power of the completed act, and their validity does not depend on the orthodoxy of the minister or his state of grace. Grace is infused into the sinner, through the Sacraments making the sinner righteous, thereby God will then justify the sinner.

Reformed: The Reformers taught that the Righteousness of Christ (or merit of Christ) is the sole ground of our justification, and Christ's Righteousness is imputed to the believer by faith (instrumental, not meritorious cause). Rome: The Roman Church teaches that the sacrament of Baptism is the instrumental cause of justification. Baptism is the primary instrumental cause of justification in that it is the 1st or initial cause of justification. This grace of justification received in Baptism may be lost, the secondary instrumental cause of justification is the sacrament of Penance. {Council of Trent: VI Session; Chapter XIV}

New Catechism of the Catholic Church: "Justification is conferred in Baptism, the Sacrament of faith. It conforms to the Righteousness of God, who makes us inwardly just by the power of His mercy."

The Roman Catholic Church teaches clearly that the infusion, rather than the imputation of Christ's Righteousness, makes justification possible if the believe assents to and cooperates with this grace:

" ...Jesus Christ himself continually infuses his virtue into the said justified...this virtue always precedes and accompanies and follows their good works, which without it could not in any wise be pleasing and meritorious before God- we must believe that nothing further is wanting to the justified, to prevent their being accounted to have, by those very works which have been done in God, fully satisfied the divine law according to the state of this life, and to have truly merited eternal life, to be obtained also in its due time, if so be, however, that they depart in grace...neither is our own justice established as our own as from ourselves; nor is the justice of God ignored or repudiated: for that justice which is called ours, because that we are justified from its being inherent in us, that same is (the justice) of God, because that it is infused into us of God, through the merit of Christ...after this Catholic doctrine on Justification, which whoso receives not faithfully and firmly can not be justified..." {Council of Trent: VI Session; Chapter XVI} The Roman Catholic doctrine of justification is itself a necessary condition for justification. At this point Rome affirms that the doctrine of justification is an essential article of the faith, essential to salvation itself.

What if Roman Catholics and Evangelicals agreed to unite and affirm: "We affirm together that we are justified by grace through faith because of Christ," would there be true unity based on Scriptural teaching? Rome: "because of Christ" means infusion...Evangelical Reformed: "because of Christ" means Imputation.
TO PREACH CHRIST IS TO FEED THE SOUL, TO JUSTIFY IT, TO SET IT FREE AND TO SAVE IT."


TO PREACH CHRIST IS TO FEED THE SOUL, TO JUSTIFY IT, TO SET IT FREE AND TO SAVE IT."

Martin Luther said,

  • "One thing, and one alone, is necessary for life, justification, and Christian liberty; and that is the Word of God, the Gospel of Christ, as He said, "I am the resurrection and the life; he that believeth in Me shall not die eternally" (John 11:25) and also, "If the Son shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed" (John 8:36), and "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." (Matthew 4:4)

  • · "Let us therefore hold the Word of God for certain and firmly established that the soul can do everything except the Word of God, without which none at all of its wants and provided for. But, having the Word, it is rich and wants for nothing, since that is the Word of life, of truth, of light, of peace, of justification, of salvation, of joy, of liberty, of wisdom, of virtue, of grace, of glory, and of every good thing. "

Luther then was right, and today his words are right. My grandmother started my journey in reading the Word. In 1960 when I was 13, she got me started on my reading the Bible from Genesis to Revelation at least once a year. When I read the Word it’s as though I am reading the very words of Jesus Christ, speaking to me personally. That's better than speaking to any baseball player or person. My Bibles are never very far from my eye sight. In every room of my house there is a Bible. Even in my car there is always a Bible. The Words are never far from my mind.

When I was preaching/teaching, it was the Word that filled my preaching. Luther again said, "To preach Christ is to feed the soul, to justify it, to set it free, and to save it, if it believes the preaching. For faith alone and the efficacious use of the word of God, bring salvation. "If thou shalt confess with thy mouth thou shalt be saved" Romans 10:9 says. For the word of God cannot be received and honored by any works, but by faith alone. Hence Luther said, "it is clear that as the soul needs the word alone for life and justification, so it is justified by faith alone, and not by any works. For if it could be justified by any other means, it would have no need of the Word, nor consequently of faith. Luther

The one who believes the Word, has heard the Word of truth from the Holy Spirit. Ephesians 1:13. One believes and one has faith, not on his own but comes to him by the Word and the work of the Holy Spirit in him.

Faith is the moment one believes the message proclaimed, as opposed to the moment he "asked Jesus into his heart." After he believes (because he's been born again by the Spirit of God) he then expresses an interest in calling on God.

What I realize, the cause of my faith is not me, but the cause of my faith is Christ and His word on my soul. Thus, we can say we are born again first which is the cause of our faith. As the Word says, "But to all who did receive Him, who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God."

  • John Chitty said, "This sentence does not say that God gave the right to become children to all who first receive Him. It excludes this by the clause, "...not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man..."

· The point is this "the reception must be the result of regeneration." Faith and being born again occur at the same moment.

R.C. Sproul counsels, We are JUSTIFIED BY FAITH, not regenerated. They are distinct works, although they typically happen simultaneously. Faith doesn't allow the Holy Spirit to regenerate us. The Holy Spirit regenerates us so that we can "see and enter the Kingdom of God" John 3. Which is to say, seeing and entering the Kingdom of God, being born again, is not a condition , but a work of divine monergism (the work of Christ alone) which enables you to believe, like wind causes the trees to sway.

Far too many good Christians have not learned to let go of the sovereignty of the individual over his own spiritual birth. They still want to allow the individual to have some free will to say yes to God for their salvation. We didn't have a free will to be born into this life and we don't have any choice to choose to be born spiritually.

  • Ephesians 1 did the most to change my mind in this area of thinking about salvation. When teaching Ephesians in First Baptist Church in Altoona, and again at the Christ Church Apartments in Lexington, Kentucky, the truth bore out that God alone brings about the new birth in the lost person.
  • I truly have the faith, I truly believe, it becomes my free will to believe and have the faith to believe, why? Because Christ breaks the chain of slavery of sin and frees me to believe. It’s all the work of Christ in me. Amen
  • Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant May 8th 2007 Proof Read by Charity May 8th
GROW BY LEARNING'S 215TH POST SINCE AUGUST 2007
Good morning, this is the Lord's day in Ohio. It's the Lord's day in Kansas.
  • My sister Ellen called us last night to tell us about the tragedy in Greensburg, Kansas. Bryan Williams' family live in Greensburg, it's Bryan's home town. He and his wife April and three lovely children live now in Plano, Texas. Bryan is married to Ellen's daughter, and Bryan supplies me with Lexmarks' latest die-cast and chasis cars.(1/64)
  • Brian said his father and mother, and sister's family all are okay, in this town that was struck by a huge tornado. 95 percent of the city was destroyed.
On another note this week:
  • Charity's (my wife of 37 years) first cousin Mike Gullett's son was killed in Baghdad last week. Zach was 20 years old.
  • Also Charity's mom is going through cancer treatment.
  • My daughter Becky, who is now living in Hutchinson, Kansas, is doing well in her second job. She is doing well also in her first job, too. She visited us last week here in Portsmouth, Ohio.
  • Our three boys are doing good in Lexington, Kentucky.
  • Charity's day at the bakery "Union Mills" was real busy on Saturday. She and her sister Debbie, and their good cake decorators Tammy and Sondi had a long day at work with making wedding cakes.
  • This has been a long week for Charity and I, as we have been under the weather. Charity had a cold most of the week, and to top off the week she was coming down the steps at home, and missed the last two steps at three o'clock in the morning. I was downstairs myself, and I was also down with a cold. In our older years I think we might need to live downstairs. We are a few years away from those older years.
  • I don't generally post our personal life in general on this post. But this post is my personal journal come to think about it. I generally post my journey in ministry.
  • And my journey in church ministry has not lately been going so well. But my personal ministry is doing well.
  • If I could discover a church that was fundamental in the faith, has a passion for the preaching/teaching of the Word of God, that is more concerned about the preaching of the Word rather than preaching from the KJV, had a passion for growth and discipling people, and was not intimidated by an older former pastor/teacher, and could use a teacher that would be also nice.
  • We will rejoice in the Lord. He is Lord, He is Savior, He is My King, Lord of Lords.
Drafted by Charles Whisnant and proof read by Charity
  • (Note from Charity: "No, DeWayne, I'm not Charles' 'ghost writer', but as Uncle Chuck noted, you can tell when I proof the text! ")

EUTHANASIA AND CHRISTIANS

I worked in a Health Care Home for over ten years, so I was always near those near death. I was asked about Euthanasia and related subjectsas Pastor of First Baptist Church in Kansas.

Should the Elders of the Church have a answer to those who ask this question?

Key Definitions
Euthanasia consists of any act or deliberate omission taken by oneself and/or others with the specific intention of causing the death of a person and actually causing that death. It is believed by proponents of euthanasia that the death being caused is for the good of the person who is being killed.

“Active euthanasia” consists of the effort of a person to cause his own death or the death of another. With active euthanasia, the medical cause of death is not disease or injury, but rather the act taken to cause death.

“Passive euthanasia” is the withholding, withdrawal or refusal of available medical treatment that could clearly enable a person to live significantly longer. The intent of passive euthanasia is to cause a person’s death at a time when death is not imminent.

“Letting die” (which is distinct from euthanasia) consists of the withholding or withdrawing of all life-prolonging and life-sustaining medications and technologies from a terminally or irreversibly ill patient with whom death is imminent even with treatment. The intention of “letting die” is not to choose or intend death but to enhance the well-being of the patient by avoiding useless prolonging of the dying process.

The difference between “letting die” and “passive euthanasia,” then, is this: With “passive euthanasia,” death is not imminent and medical treatment could clearly enable a person to live significantly longer, but with “letting die” the patient’s death is imminent even with treatment (i.e., medical technologies can no longer prevent death). Whereas the former seeks to cause a person’s death, the latter seeks to enhance the well-being of the patient by avoiding the prolongation of the dying process.

(Note: These definitions are from Keith H. Essex, “Euthanasia,” The Master’s Seminary Journal 11/2 (2000): 191-212.)

Biblical Response

Death is inevitable and its timing ultimately rests in the hand of God (Deut. 32:39; 1 Sam. 2:6; Heb. 9:27). Life is a gift from God, and everyone has an obligation to value his own life and the life of others regardless of the circumstances.

Because Scripture prohibits murder and suicide (Gen. 9:6; Exod. 20:13; Deut. 5:17), euthanasia is never an acceptable option for the believer. In addition to violating the prohibition of suicide, the act of killing oneself is the ultimate expression of selfishness.

In the case that the patient is irreversibly terminal and death is imminent regardless of the treatment provided, it is acceptable for the patient or—if the patient is unconscious—a legally authorized third party (e.g., a spouse or family member) to choose to withhold any of the following forms of treatment:

life-sustaining medication-
life-sustaining,
medically-administered nourishment-
life-sustaining support systems

In other words, although Scripture forbids all forms of euthanasia, we believe that “letting die” is an acceptable option in the circumstances described above.

You and your loved ones may want to consider creating a living will that indicates your wishes regarding medical treatment in order to guide medical personnel in a situation when you are unable to make decisions or choose treatment options.
I often say, Charity let me die if ? A lot of if's. Its not that easy for your wife or husband. Just because I am ready to go to heaven, willing too, we need wisdom in this matter of life and death.
Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant, May 2, 2007
Resouce from Grace Community Church, (MacArthur)