December 9, 2012
Sundays 7:30 am Channel 27 WKYT
It is requested that all children under the age of five stay in our nursery
so there will be no distractions during the preaching of the Gospel.
HYMN OF THE DAY
Precious Saviour, friend of sinners
We as such to Thee draw near
Let Thy Spirit dwell within us
With that love that casts out fear.
Matchless Saviour, let us know Thee
As the Lord our Righteousness
Cause our hearts to cleave unto Thee
Come, and with Thy presence bless.
Come and claim us as Thy portion
Let us all find rest in Thee
Leave us not to empty notions
We would find our hope in Thee!
(Tune: “Jesus Calls Us” p. 374)
We rejoice with John Parker who will be baptized this evening. If anyone else
desires to confess Christ in believer’s baptism please let me know.
All adults are invited to attend the Christmas party this Friday night at 7:00
at the Hartland Clubhouse. Bring an appetizer or dessert.
9th – Chuck Mohr 9th – Ben Small
13th – Joey Borders 14th – Christie Small
“Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.”
- Proverbs 27:6
SOME THOUGHTS ON CRITICISM
We have all been guilty of being too critical toward others and we have all
experienced the fires of criticism leveled against us. Here are some thoughts
concerning being critical and being criticized. Regarding being critical, may
we always remember that what we criticize others for we are guilty of ourselves!
(Romans 2:1) Also remember, “With the same measure you mete withal it
shall be measured to you again” (Luke 6:38)…you will be criticized
in the same proportion that you criticize. Even if we have a good reason to
be critical, there is a desire in our criticism to make our own candle shine
brighter by exposing the dimness of others. I wonder how much criticism would
escape our lips if we thought of these things. Regarding being criticized, there
is an element of truth in all criticisms leveled against us (and sometimes they
are grossly understated.) May God give us grace to receive the criticism and
improve our character. Yes criticism hurts, but do not be too hurt. Remember,
all that matters is what God sees. In the grand scheme of things, it does not
matter all that much what men think of you. Paul said to the Corinthians, “It
is a very small thing that I should be judged of you, or of man’s judgment”
(I Corinthians 4:3). And do not hold a grudge against the one who has criticized
you. “Take heed unto all words that are spoken; lest thou hear thy servant
curse thee: For often times also thine own heart knoweth that thou thyself likewise
hast cursed others.” (Ecc. 7:21-22) May we be harder on ourselves than
we are on others, and may we profit from the criticism that is made toward us.
Criticism can be constructive!
WHAT FREE WILL DENIES
Before we can see what free will denies, we first have to know what is meant
by free will. Free will says that a man’s destiny is dependent upon the
choice he makes. His will is free to choose to allow God to save him, or reject
God’s offer of salvation. His eternal destiny is determined by his free
If I believe my will is free, there are three things I deny. (1) I deny that
God is sovereign. I say His sovereignty does not extend to my will. That is
a complete denial of His sovereignty. (2) I deny that I am a sinner in the biblical
definition of the word. According to the Bible, men are dead in sins (Ephesians
2:1). That means they are completely unable to do anything to save themselves.
Free will is a denial of that. (3) Free will is a denial of free grace. You
cannot believe in salvation by grace and free will. Free will is nothing less
than salvation by works. The teaching of free will is a denial of the Gospel!
PLAYING IT SAFE
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego could have played it safe and bowed when they
heard the music. After all, they had a lot of positive influence with their
positions in government. That would all be gone if they were thrown into a fiery
furnace. Daniel could have played it safe by not praying before an opened window.
John the Baptist could have played it safe by keeping his mouth shut regarding
Herod and his wife. But in serving the Lord, we are not to “play it safe.”
Serving the Lord is not safe! It is dangerous. “In the world ye shall
have tribulation.” We are to do what He tells us to do regardless of cost
or consequence, knowing that is all in His hands. Only the grace of God can
enable us to do that. Remember the words of the Lord, “He that saveth
his life shall lose it.” May the Lord deliver us from a safe religion.
A Far-reaching, All-inclusive Work
The salvation of a single sinner is a far-reaching, all-inclusive work of the
Triune God. To single out any particular part fails to do justice to the whole
miraculous work of grace. For example, there is no salvation without election,
redemption, calling, hearing, conversion and perseverance. Sovereign grace is
God providentially working all things together for good to those who love God.
Someone asked, “What does it take to bring a sinner to Christ?”
The answer is, everything. Absolutely everything in time and in eternity is
what it takes to bring one soul to Christ. Every action, every word, every previous
event has been directed towards that one precise instant of time. It is a greater
work than perhaps any of us yet realize (John 14:12). The work of the Holy Spirit
in accomplishing the elective purpose of the Father, and applying the redemption
blessings of the Son ought not to be overlooked. Salvation, daily deliverance
from sin and security in Christ, is the work of the Holy Spirit just as surely
as it is the work of the Father and the Son. – Pastor Peter Meney