Archive for June 2011

Not What My Hands Have Done

June 30, 2011

“Not What My Hands Have Done”

Many of the great worship hymns that we sing in our churches on Sunday mornings were written by men who lived hundreds of years ago. Men such as Martin Luther, 1483-1546, (“A Might Fortress Is Our God’), John Newton, 1724-1807, (“Amazing Grace”), and Augustus Toplady, 1740-1778, (“Rock of Ages’).

Horatius Bonar is another man who penned many of the hymns that we sing today. Bonar was a 19th Century Scottish pastor and preacher (1898-1889) who wrote hymns such as “I Heard the Voice of Jesus Say,” “I Lay My Sins on Jesus,” and “No, Not Despairingly.”

Another of Bonar’s hymns is entitled “Not What My Hands Have Done.” This hymn, like many, has been set to a more contemporary rhythm and sung by contemporary artists.

Below is a version of “Not What My Hands Have Done” by Indelible Grace that I pray will bless you as it has me.

“He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that being justified by His grace we might be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” (Jude 3:5-6)

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For information on Bonar, see The Life And Works Of Horatius Bonar. For a list of his sermons, see here at Monergism.

The Object Of Our Wonder

June 27, 2011

In Philippians 2, the Apostle Paul, inspired by the Holy Spirit, wrote

 ” … that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God.”

Sixteen hundred years after Paul penned the above verses, Thomas Boston, Scottish Puritan, pastor, and preacher (1676-1732), delivered a wonderful message on the name of Christ. In his message, “Christ’s Beautiful Name,” Boston exalts the “name of our incarnate Redeemer.”

Here are three quotes from the sermon that have drawn my attention.

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 “The eyes of the angels are drawn after Him as a most wonderful sight. The faces of the cherubim were therefore made looking towards the mercy-seat, Exodus 25:20, to teach us that Christ the Mediator, reconciling God and sinners, is the object of the angel’s wonder.”

 ” … there being an incomprehensible depth of excellencies in Him ….”

 “All qualities that render one desirable and lovely meet together in Him, and all those are in Him to a miraculous pitch.”

‘ … at the name of Jesus every knee should bow ….”

Philippians 2:10

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For more quotes from this message, see my May post on Boston’s sermon here.

Please visit here and here for your Reformed books and resource materials.

A Godly Man Weeps

June 22, 2011

In The Godly Man’s Picture, Thomas Watson writes that a godly man weeps for a number of reasons. Those reasons include his struggle with indwelling sin, his lack of perseverance in the pursuit of holiness, and the overwhelming sense of love that the Lord has for him.

After describing these reasons for weeping, along with three others, Watson concludes by saying:

 “Thus we see what cause there is why a child of God should weep even after conversion…. Now this sorrow of a godly man for sin is not a despairing sorrow. He does not mourn without hope. ‘Iniquities prevail against me’ (Psa.65:3) – there is the holy soul weeping. ‘As for our transgressions, thou shalt purge them away’ – there is faith triumphing.”

Is your faith in Christ triumphing over today’s temptations, sins, and sorrows?

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You can purchase The Godly Man’s Picture at either Westminster Books or  Monergism Books.

Click, Earn, and Read

June 19, 2011

I have always enjoyed reading. While there is much good reading available on-line that can be read while sitting at the computer (no, I don’t have a Kindle reader or iPhone and apps!), or downloaded and printed out (which I do quite-a-lot), I love books.

Books can be rather expensive, though,  and that fact determines how many and how often I can purchase them.

Fortunately, I have found two ways to earn reading material. Those ways are the on-line “blog partners” programs of  Westminster Theological Seminary Books and Monergism Books.

  Westminster BookStore

Monergism Books

A blogger, like me, can link to either book store or their books that I may write about or mention in posts, and whenever someone, like you, clicks on that link to visit the store or take a look at the book, I earn points. When I have earned enough points, I can then “purchase” books from the book store. Pretty good deal.

There are many books that I would like to read, so I am trying to get a start on earning points. That’s why I’m writing this post.

May I ask you to begin helping me earn points with the Westminster and Monergism on-line book stores?  There are three ways that you can do that.

The first way is to either click on the links found below the Westminster and Monergism Bookstore logos above or on the store names under the “Books” heading to the right.You will be taken to the book stores where you can peruse their books and other material.

The second way is to click on the link to any book that you may come across as you have the opportunity to scan through my posts. The link, of course, will take you to that particular book at either WTS Books or Monergism Books.

And, the third way is, if you are purpose-drive, to click on the “Books” category in the right-hand column of my blog and scan through all of my posts that mention books. Most of them up to this point will be linked to the WTS on-line book store.

Thank you for helping me read and fill my head and heart with good Reformed and Puritan material

Extol the LORD – Monday Morning Worship

June 13, 2011

Extol the LORD

Be Impressed

June 10, 2011

Be Impressed

 “As we would prove to the world that we have the impress of godliness on us, let us be prizers of Jesus Christ; he is elect, precious. Christ is the wonder of beauty.”

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(Thomas Watson, The Godly Man’s Picture; chapter 4, Showing the Characteristics of a Godly Man, section 7, “A Godly Man Prizes Christ”)

Husbands, Love Your Wives

June 7, 2011

If you are a Christian man who is prayerfully seeking to be a more godly husband and father, you are very familiar with Ephesians 5:22-29. In this passage of Scripture, the Holy Spirit, through the Apostle Paul, addresses marital and family relationships.

Speaking specifically to husbands, the Lord says, “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her.” (5:26)

And, how has Christ loved the church? He gave Himself sacrificially on the Cross, with no thought for Himself, for the purchase of our salvation.

So, following the example of Christ, we (husbands) are to love and serve our wives and children at all times, in every situation and circumstance of daily life, for their good and betterment, eternally and temporally, with no thought for ourselves.

As I desire and seek to be a more loving and godly husband and father, I have been encouraged, not only by the reading of God’s Word, but by the words of Richard Baxter (1615-1691, English Puritan and author of the classic, Reformed Pastor),  that were written to Christian husbands 350 years ago .

In his book, A Christian Directory, first printed in 1673, Baxter includes a chapter entitled “The Special Duties of Husbands to their Wives.” This essay consists of nine points and a conclusion statement, all referred to as “Directs.” The points that Baxter makes in this brief section of his book have just as much application value to us today as they did when they were first penned.

Check out the points below and see if they, by themselves, won’t encourage you as you pursue being a more godly husband and father to your wife and children. Then, click the link at the end of this post and read Baxter’s essay in its entirety.

Baxter begins his essay with a pretty powerful, yet profound, statement:

 “He that will expect duty or comfort from his wife, must be faithful in doing the duty of a husband.”

He continues from there with ten “Directs.”

Direct I. The husband must undertake the principal part of the government of the whole family, even of the wife herself.”

Direct II. The husband must so unite authority and love, that neither of them be omitted or concealed, but both be exercised and maintained. Love must not be exercised so imprudently as to destroy the exercise of authority; and authority must not be exercised over a wife so magisterially and imperiously, as to destroy the exercise of love.”

Direct III. It is the duty of husbands to preserve the authority of their wives, over the children and servants of the family.”

Direct IV. Also you must preserve the honor as well as the authority of your wives.”

Direct V. The husband is to excel the wife in knowledge, and be her teacher in the matters that belong to salvation. He must instruct her in the word of God, …. Those husbands who despise the word of God, and live in wilful ignorance, do not only despise their own souls, but their families also; and making themselves unable for their duties, they are usually themselves despised by their inferiors ….”

Direct VI. The husband must be the principal teacher of the family.”

“Direct VII. The husband is to be the mouth of the family, in their daily conjunct prayers unto God.”

Direct VIII. The husband is to be the chief provider for the family (ordinarily).”

Direct IX. The husband must be the strongest in family patience; bearing with the weakness and passions of the wife; not so as to make light of any sin against God, but so as not to make a matter of any frailty as against himself, and so as to preserve the love and peace which is to be as the natural temper of their relation.”

Direct X serves as a conclusion to the essay.

Encouraged? Convicted?

Me, too.

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Read The Special Duties of Husbands to their Wives in its entirety.

Check out Richard Baxter’s The Reformed Pastor at Monergism Books and WTS Books.