Round Up

When God Does the Miracle We Didn’t Ask For – Countless childhood surgeries. Yearlong stints in the hospital. Verbal and physical bullying from classmates. Multiple miscarriages as a young wife. The unexpected death of a child. A debilitating progressive disease. Riveting pain. Betrayal. A husband who leaves. If it were up to me, I would have written my story differently.

Sensual Worship – When interest in the churches begins to centre round the visual and the sensual it is commonly a sign of impending apostasy.

So You’re A Calvinist?  How Do You React To Cancer? – Our worldly culture promotes youth, vitality and a carefree life, and if you are not youthful, athletic with toned legs and a six pack tummy, and enjoying a vigorous, fulfilling sex life, then you have a second rate existence as a person.

I Love a Church That Sings Badly – I am drawn toward a church that sings poorly and am a little suspicious of a church that sings really well.

Bind My Wandering Heart to Thee – O to grace how great a debtor, Daily I’m constrained to be! Let Thy goodness, like a fetter, Bind my wandering heart to Thee.

Quote:

Sovereignty characterizes the whole being of God. He is sovereign in all his attributes. —A.W. Pink

Indicators You Might Apostatize

What follows is a link to a blog I read this morning.  It is mainly geared to those in professional ministry or academic pursuits, but I found it especially appealing as I often think along the same lines.  I have posted the sectional highlights below in the hopes that you will be enticed to read the article, and while it is a long read, in my opinion, one that is well worth it.  After you read it, spend some time thinking about it.

10.  Your ministry ambitions are fueled by something other than to see Christ’s Kingdom expanded.

9. You are more interested in enjoying your personal liberty than in erring on the side of personal restriction when it comes to the use of liberty.

8. You play fast and loose with Scripture.

7. When you are confronted with an interpretive difficulty, your tendency is to find fault with Scripture rather than to resolutely work through to a valid conclusion.

6. Your interpretive decisions are more likely to be influenced by popular opinion than by the grammatico-historical model of exegesis.

5. You will alter your theology based on life circumstances/experiences.

4. You will alter your theology due to relationships.

3. You stop struggling against sin.

2. You give up/replace on your devotional studies with activities.

1. You are not primarily motivated by an adoration for Christ.

The entire article can be found here and I hope you head on over and read it.

As an added bonus, there are two sermons by Brian Rickett entitled Ten Indicators That You Might Apostatize in 2013.  Here are the links to those:

Ten Indicators That You Might Apostatize in 2013 – Part 1

Ten Indicators That You Might Apostatize in 2013 – Part 2

Spurgeon Thursday

ABSCONDING AND APOSTASY
NO. 3556
A SERMON PUBLISHED ON THURSDAY, MARCH 22, 1917
DELIVERED BY C. H. SPURGEON
“Will you also go away?” John 6:67.

No mischief that ever befalls our Christian  communities is more lamentable  than that which comes from the defection of the members. The heaviest sorrow that can wring a pastor’s heart is such as comes from the treachery of his most familiar friend. The direst calamity the Church can dread is not such as will arise from the assault of enemies outside, but from false Brothers and Sisters within the camp. My eminent predecessor, Benjamin Keach, though arrested, brought  before the magistrates, imprisoned, pilloried and otherwise made to suffer by the Government of the times for the Gospel Doctrines that he preached and published, found it easier to brook the rough usage of open foes than to bear the griefs of wounded love, or sustain the shock of outraged confidence. I should not think his experience was very exceptional. Other saints would have preferred the rotten eggs of the villagers to the rooted animosities of slanderers! Troy could never be taken by the assaults of the Greeks outside her walls. Only when, by stratagem,  the enemy had been admitted  within the citadel, was that brave city compelled to yield. The devil, himself, is not such a subtle foe to the Church as Judas, when, after the supper, Satan entered into him. Judas was a friend of Jesus. Jesus addressed him as such. And Judas said, “Hail, Master,” and kissed Him. And it was Judas who betrayed Him! That is a picture which may well appall you—that  is a peril which may well admonish you! In all our churches, among the many who enlist, there are some who desert. They continue awhile, and then they go back to the world. The radical reason why they retract is an obvious disagreement. “They went out from us because they were not of us, for if they had been of us, doubtless they would have continued with us.” The unconverted adherents to our fellowship are no loss to the Church when they depart. They are not a real loss, any more than the scattering of the chaff from the threshing floor is a detriment to the wheat. Christ keeps the winnow- ing fan always going. His own preaching constantly sifted His hearers. Some were blown away because they were chaff. They did not really believe. By the ministry of the Gospel, by the order of Providence, by all the arrangements of Divine Government, the precious are separated from the vile, the dross is purged away from the silver that the good seed and the pure metal may remain and be preserved! The process is always painful. It causes great searching of heart among those who abide faithful—and occasions deep anxiety to gentle spirits of tender, sympathetic mold.

I trust, dear Friends, that you will not think I harbor  any ungenerous suspicions of your fidelity because my text contains so pointed and so personal an appeal to your conscience. There is more of pathos than of pardon in the question as our Lord put it, “Will you also go away?” He addressed the favored twelve. I put it to myself. I put it to those who are the officers of the Church. I put it to every member without exception—Will you also go away? But should there be one to whom it is peculiarly applicable,  I do not desire to flinch from putting  the question most personally to that one, “What? Are you going? Do you mean to turn back? Do you mean to go away?”

Let us approach the enquiry sideways. Will you also go away? “Also” means as well as other people. Why do others go? If they have any good reason,  perhaps  we may see cause to follow their example. Look narrowly, then, at the various causes or excuses for defection.  Why do they renounce the religious  profession they once espoused? The fundamental  reason is lack of Grace, a lack of true faith, an absence of vital godliness. It is, however, the outward reasons which expose the inward apostasy of the heart from Christ of which I am anxious to treat.

I. WHY SOME LEAVE CHRIST

Some there are in these days, as there were in our Lord’s own day, who depart from Christ because they cannot bear His Doctrine. Our Lord had more explicitly than on any former occasion declared the necessity of the soul’s feeding upon Himself. They probably  misunderstood  His language,  but they certainly  took offense at His statement. Hence there were those who said, “This is a hard saying; who can hear it?” So they walked no more with Him.

There are many points and particulars in which the Gospel is offensive to human nature and revolting to the pride of the creature. It was not intended to please man. How can we attribute  such a purpose to God? Why should He devise a Gospel to suit the whims of our poor fallen human nature? He intended to save men, but He never intended to gratify their depraved tastes. Rather does He lay the axe to the root of the tree and cut down human pride. When God’s servants are led to set forth some humbling Doctrine, there are those who say, “Ah, I will not assent to that!” Continue reading