The Treasures Of Peace!


January 20th, 2014


Romans 5:1–2 “Therefore being justified by faith, we have Peace With God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.”

Romans 5:9–10 “Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.  For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.”

These great verses from the King James Bible illustrate for us the Significance and the Source of the Christian’s Peace. Few Treasures in all of life can surpass the Treasure Of Peace:

I recently came across this article about a study conducted by the Duke University Department Psychology & Neuroscience This is one of the most respected such programs in the nation. They have 38 Primary Faculty and over 50 Allied & Secondary Faculty members. The Duke University Department of PN reportedly did a study on "Peace Of Mind." The study discovered the primary factors found that contribute greatly to emotional and mental stability. They are as follows: (1) The Absence Of Suspicion And Resentment. Nursing a grudge was a major factor in unhappiness. (2) Not Living In The Past. An unwholesome preoccupation with old mistakes and failures leads to depression. (3) Not Wasting Time And Energy Fighting Conditions You Cannot Change. Cooperate with life, instead of trying to run away from it. (4) Force Yourself To Stay Involved With The Living World. Resist the temptation to withdraw and become reclusive during periods of emotional stress. (5) Refuse To Indulge In Self-Pity When Life Hands You A Raw Deal. Accept the fact that nobody gets through life without some sorrow and misfortune. (6) Cultivate The Old-Fashioned Virtues - love, humor, compassion and loyalty. (7) Do Not Expect Too Much Of Yourself. When there is too wide a gap between self-expectation and your ability to meet the goals you have set, feelings of inadequacy are inevitable. (8) Find Something Bigger Than Yourself To Believe In. Self-Centered Egotistical People Score Lowest In Any Test For Measuring Happiness. This study really reveals the Treasure Of Peace!

The Treasures Of Peace are such a Priceless and such a Powerful reality. If there was ever a day in the history of humanity when mankind needed to get ahold of these great Treasures, it is today. Do you have these great Treasures in your life today, my dear friend?

1. There Is The Peace Of A Quiet Conscience (NO GUILT)  

2. There Is The Peace Of A Restful Mind (NO ANXIETY)                   

3. There Is The Peace Of A Surrendered Will (NO RESISTANCE)  

4. There Is The Peace Of A Hopeful Heart (NO FEAR)  

5. There Is The Peace Of Loving Fellowship (NO DIVISION)

This peace is not found in mere religion or in the resolve to reform oneself into a better and a kinder person. The Bible speaks about the Peace that can only be found in a personal relationship with Jesus Christ:

1. There Is Peace With God (Romans 5:1)                           

2. There Is Peace From God (Philemon 4; II John 3)  

3. There Is The Peace Of God (Philippians 4:7)   

I love the words of the great hymn written by Warren D. Cor­nell, in 1889:

Far away in the depths of my spirit tonight
Rolls a melody sweeter than psalm;
In celestial strains it unceasingly falls
O’er my soul like an infinite calm.


Peace, peace, wonderful peace,
Coming down from the Father above!
Sweep over my spirit forever, I pray
In fathomless billows of love!


What a treasure I have in this wonderful peace,
Buried deep in the heart of my soul,
So secure that no power can mine it away,
While the years of eternity roll!


Refrain

I am resting tonight in this wonderful peace,
Resting sweetly in Jesus’ control;
For I’m kept from all danger by night and by day,
And His glory is flooding my soul!


Refrain

And I think when I rise to that city of peace,
Where the Anchor of peace I shall see,
That one strain of the song which the ransomed will sing
In that heavenly kingdom will be:


Refrain

Ah, soul! are you here without comfort and rest,
Marching down the rough pathway of time?
Make Jesus your Friend ere the shadows grow dark;
O accept of this peace so sublime!


Refrain

As great of a Treasure that it is to have Peace I remind you that:

1. The Source Of Our Peace Originates In Justification 

Romans 5:1–2 “Therefore being justified (JUST AS IF WE HAVE NEVER SINNED) by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.”

Romans 5:9 “Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.”  

I love the words of the song: "I'm justified! I'm happy in Jesus today.  The sins I've committed, they're all in the Past; They’ll never condemn me, for He holds me Fast!  I'm justified! I'm justified!  I'm happy in Jesus today!" This song can only sung and it's Treasure realized by one who has personally accepted Jesus Christ as their Saviour. If you have never trusted Jesus as your Saviour, I urge you to do so this very day friend.

2. The Force Of Our Peace Overcomes Tribulation

John 16:33 “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”

In 1555, Nicholas Ridley was burned at the stake (DURING THE BLOODY REIGN OF BRITAIN’S CATHOLIC MONARCH MARY I – OR OTHERWISE KNOWN AS BLOODY MARY) because of his witness for Christ. On the night before Bishop Ridley's execution, his brother offered to remain with him in the prison chamber to be of assistance and comfort. Nicholas declined the offer and replied that he meant to go to bed and sleep as quietly as ever he did in his life. Because he knew the Peace Of God, he could rest in the strength of the everlasting arms of his Lord to meet his need.
 

 

Feeding Sheep Or Amusing Goats?

January 9th, 2014


Charles Haddon Spurgeon
Metropolitan Tabernacle
London, England
How far has today’s church drifted from the pattern of the book of Acts. I contend that we all need a fresh encounter with what Jesus actually said about being his disciple, and then obey what we have heard. Many 21st century believers need to consider with an open heart how we have manipulated a God-centered gospel to fit our human-centered preferences. We must honestly call into question the host of comfortable notions that are common among Christ's followers today. Under the false banner of Cheap Grace many believers and churches today Legitimized and Rationalized selfish and sinful attitudes and actions.

I recently came across an old article written by the Prince of Preachers Charles Haddon Spurgeon. Spurgeon, of course, was one of the greatest preachers of his generation (1834-1892). Spurgeon saw the direction the church was taking with entertaining the congregation and a marketing ideology creeping into the Bride of Christ. If Spurgeon thought his generation was becoming more entertainment focused rather than edifying in its approach to ministry can you even imagine what he would think of today’s contemporary services, CCM worship and watered down preaching and drama focused services? It is not with an ounce of a critical spirit but rather with a broken heart that I share with you the great Victorian preacher’s words.

Spurgeon’s article was titled “Feeding Sheep Or Amusing Goats.” An evil is in the professed camp of the Lord, so gross in its impudence, that the most shortsighted can hardly fail to notice it during the past few years. It has developed at an abnormal rate, even for evil. It has worked like leaven until the whole lump ferments. The devil has seldom done a cleverer thing than hinting to the church that part of their mission is to provide entertainment for the people, with a view to winning them.

From speaking out as the Puritans did, the church has gradually toned down her testimony, then winked at and excused the frivolities of the day. Then she tolerated them in her borders. Now she has adopted them under the plea of reaching the masses.

My first contention is that providing amusement for the people is nowhere spoken of in the Scriptures as a function of the church. If it is a Christian work, why did not Christ speak of it? "Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature" (Mark 16:15). That is clear enough. So it would have been if He had added, "and provide amusement for those who do not relish the gospel." No such words, however, are to be found. It did not seem to occur to him.

Then again, "He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some evangelists; and some pastors and teachers .., for the work of the ministry" (Eph. 4:11-12). Where do entertainers come in? The Holy Spirit is silent concerning them. Were the prophets persecuted because they amused the people or because they refused? The concert has no martyr roll.

Again, providing amusement is in direct antagonism to the teaching and life of Christ and all his apostles. What was the attitude of the church to the world? Ye are the salt" (Matt. 5:13), not the sugar candy---something the world will spit out not swallow. Short and sharp was the utterance, "Let the dead bury their dead" (Matt. 8:22) He was in awful earnestness.

Had Christ introduced more of the bright and pleasant elements into his mission, he would have been more popular when they went back, because of the searching nature of His teaching. I do not hear him say, "Run after these people Peter and tell them we will have a different style of service tomorrow, something short and attractive with little preaching. We will have a pleasant evening for the people. Tell them they will be sure to enjoy it. Be quick Peter, we must get the people somehow." Jesus pitied sinners, sighed and wept over them, but never sought to amuse them.

In vain will the Epistles be searched to find any trace of this gospel of amusement! Their message is, "Come out, keep out, keep clean out!" Anything approaching fooling is conspicuous by its absence. They had boundless confidence in the gospel and employed no other weapon.

After Peter and John were locked up for preaching, the church had a prayer meeting but they did not pray, "Lord grant unto thy servants that by a wise and discriminating use of innocent recreation we may show these people how happy we are." If they ceased not from preaching Christ, they had not time for arranging entertainments. Scattered by persecution, they went everywhere preaching the gospel. They turned the world upside down (Acts 17:6). That is the only difference! Lord, clear the church of all the rot and rubbish the devil has imposed on her, and bring us back to apostolic methods.

Lastly, the mission of amusement fails to effect the end desired. It works havoc among young converts. Let the careless and scoffers, who thank God because the church met them halfway, speak and testify. Let the heavy laden who found peace through the concert not keep silent! Let the drunkard to whom the dramatic entertainment has been God's link in the chain of the conversion, stand up! There are none to answer. The mission of amusement produces no converts. The need of the hour for today's ministry is believing scholarship joined with earnest spirituality, the one springing from the other as fruit from the root. The need is biblical doctrine, so understood and felt, that it sets men on fire.

Join me in praying that the church of today, the ones filled with spirit filled and dedicated Christ followers, would clear itself of all the rot and rubbish the Satan has imposed on her, and bring ourselves back to the message and methods of the ancient, apostolic church!