Enoch Walked with God

Figures_God_took_EnochI have embraced the Reformed thinking over the past three years and have come to know God in a way I did not know Him before. When I read my bible, I was moved to tears of joy as I grasped the love, long suffering and grace of the Sovereign of the universe. However, I have noticed a tendency of many Reformed teachers to emphasize correct exegesis of scripture, correct theology, correct soteriology, but lack power in their messages. Now do not take me wrong, all the above is very necessary but we can be like the Church of Ephesus and leave our first love.
When I first was enlightened to Reformed doctrines, I could not listen to enough of John Piper, then I discovered Joel Beeke and Sinclair Ferguson and found my heart being drawn out in more praise to our great Sovereign God. These men are not perfect but they have a deep knowledge of who God is and their preaching radiates the power of the Holy Spirit. Last year, I became acquainted with the Puritans through reading, “A Puritan Theology” by Joel Beeke and Mark Jones. I did not agree with all the Puritans theological or doctrinal conclusions, but I was very impressed with their passion to know God and commune with Him. As Paul Washer said, “those of us who love the Puritans need to become men and women of God as they were.”
One question I have been asking myself, “what is a man of God?” Just this morning I listened to a sermon by Paul Washer, “True Disciple Conf. 3 of 8”  I then read a sermon by John Angell James. Mr James in his sermon discussed “Enoch Walked with God” These two articles expressed very well what is needed to make a true man of God who walks in the power of the Holy Spirit. I would like to share some of these thoughts.
Firstly, Paul Washer, stated “People need a man of God. That is not just reading good books and reading the bible ( that is necessary) but being alone with God, to speak to Him, meditate on Him, commune with Him.”  ” The Christian life is not just the right things we do to be a right kind of people, it is a passion to commune and be with God. It is to know Him in real intimacy”.  Mr. Washer gave a quote from Martin Luther,
” I have so much work to do today that I must pray three hours or I will never get it done”
The following is an article written by John Angel James mentioned above:
“Enoch walked with God.” Nothing can be more beautiful, comprehensive, or expressive than these few words. They contain a figure of speech—and what a figure! The allusion is to two people voluntarily and pleasantly walking together, and conversing confidentially with each other. They are friends, for “how can two walk together except they are agreed.” They are conscious of each other’s presence, as two people in such a situation necessarily must be. They are engaged in actual fellowship; there is communion and interchange of thought by speech. They are going the same way and engaged upon the same subject. Thus did Enoch walk with God. He was, like Abraham afterwards, the friend of God, having, as a sinner, come into a state of reconciliation with God by repentance and faith in the promised “Seed of the woman.” He loved God as the effect of God’s love to him, they were friends, and the patriarch knew and rejoiced in it. He lived as in the presence of God—he endured as seeing Him that is invisible, he acted “as ever in the great Taskmaster’s eye,” and was checked in temptation, stimulated in duty, and comforted in affliction, with Hagar’s appeal, “O God, You see me.” His private, domestic, and social life was ever regulated by the assured belief that he was always and everywhere in the presence and under the notice, even to the state of his heart, of an observant God. He maintained habitual communion with God, not only by those public acts of worship and sacrificial rites, which doubtless, he celebrated before the eyes of the scoffing generation amidst which he lived, not only at the domestic altar around which he gathered his household, nor even in the usual acts of his own private and personal devotion—but also in the constant frame and tenor of his devout and holy mind. His soul was in habitual communion with God, by its thoughts, its aspirations, and its unutterable breathings of confidence, affection, and intense desires. He exercised a divine friendship, a confidential, yet reverential familiarity, and talked with God as a man talks with his friend.

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“A Feeble Folk” THE RABBIT

imagesIt seems during this wilderness walk we are often beset with spiritual battles.Eph.6:12. These are battles we cannot fight on our own and Eph.6:14 tells us what to do.
 The past few weeks I have found myself in such a battle and tried to fight on my own. It seems when you do this depression can set in very quickly. Your mind at this time is unable to concentrate and for a time it appears Satan is winning. You pray and call to God but it seems He does not hear. You try to meditate on His promises but your mind is blank. Today, God made me realize He did hear and His answer came from an unexpected source. THE RABBIT
Proverbs 30:26 “The conies ( rabbit) are but a feeble folk, yet make their houses in the rock”
Spurgeon  used this verse in his evening devotional and I was deeply touched:
Conscious of their own natural defencelessness, the conies resort to burrows in the rocks, and are secure from their enemies. My heart, be willing to gather a lesson from these feeble folk. Thou art as weak and as exposed to peril as the timid cony, be as wise to seek a shelter. My best security is within the munitions of an immutable Jehovah, where his unalterable promises stand like giant walls of rock. It will be well with thee, my heart, if thou canst always hide thyself in the bulwarks of his glorious attributes, all of which are guarantees of safety for those who put their trust in him. Blessed be the name of the Lord, I have so done, and have found myself like David in Adullam, safe from the cruelty of my enemy; I have not now to find out the blessedness of the man who puts his trust in the Lord, for long ago, when Satan and my sins pursued me, I fled to the cleft of the rock Christ Jesus, and in his riven side I found a delightful resting-place. My heart, run to him anew to-night, whatever thy present grief may be; Jesus feels for thee; Jesus consoles thee; Jesus will help thee. No monarch in his impregnable fortress is more secure than the cony in his rocky burrow. The master of ten thousand chariots is not one whit better protected than the little dweller in the mountain’s cleft. In Jesus the weak are strong, and the defenceless safe; they could not be more strong if they were giants, or more safe if they were in heaven. Faith gives to men on earth the protection of the God of heaven. More they cannot need, and need not wish. The conies cannot build a castle, but they avail themselves of what is there already: I cannot make myself a refuge, but Jesus has provided it, his Father has given it, his Spirit has revealed it, and lo, again to-night I enter it, and am safe from every foe.
Psalm 27:5 “For in the day of trouble He will keep me safe in His dwelling; He will hide me in the shelter of His tabernacle and set me high upon a rock.”

Spurgeon on the Narrow Way

Heaven has become a trifle to you, Hell is almost a jest, eternity an empty notion, and death but a bugbear!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“Many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able!” Luke 13:24

I do not wonder that so many are deceived, when I see the careless way in which they deal with their souls. When men have to do with their estates, they are very careful; they pay a lawyer to go back over the title-deeds perhaps for two or three hundred years. In trade they will hurry hither and thither to attend to their commercial engagements; they would not launch into speculations, nor would they run great risks.

But the soul, the poor soul–how men play with it as a toy, and despise it as if it were worthless! Two or three minutes in the morning when they first roll out of bed, two or three odd minutes in the evening, when they are nearly asleep–the fag-ends of the day given to their souls, and all the best part given to the body!

And then, with what indifference do you lend your ears too often to the preaching of the Word! It is an old song; you have heard it so many times; Heaven has become a trifle to you, Hell is almost a jest, eternity an empty notion, and death but a bugbear!

Alas! it is a marvel that there are not more deceived. The wonder is that any find the gate, that any discover eternal life, when we are so, so mad, so foolish, so insane–as to trifle where we ought to be solemnly in earnest; and to play and toy–where the whole heart should be given to a work of such everlasting importance. God help us, since it is so easy to be deceived–to search, and watch, and look, and test, and try, that we be not found castaways at the last!

“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it!” Matthew 7:13-14

“Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you–unless, of course, you fail the test?” 2 Corinthians 13:5

There go I except for the Grace of God

pastor-steepek-storyYesterday, I had a situation happen that has caused me to be humbled and wonder again at the grace of God.  In order that God will receive the full glory for this situation I will discuss what has happened in the past two weeks.

Firstly, I received an email from the blog of Andrew Alleyne the title was “I Hate Church” I became very upset with the thoughts in this post and sent it on so friends could critique it. The critiques were varied in opinion but I could not get the thoughts out of my mind that Andrew had mentioned.  The most outstanding thought was expressed by some street people who felt unwanted by professing Christians and rejected in the churches. I asked myself this question, “Am I one of those Christians?”

I did not agree with the methods this preacher used to reach these people as it seemed to favor the Emergent Church. However, the remarks of the street people haunted me. Just a few weeks prior to this I had listened to this message on sermon audio.  I knew this Peter Orasuk very well, He was a chosen vessel and God had reached him with His irresistible grace. He became a gospel preacher and many were saved through his preaching.

I have related these stories to show how God worked to prepare me for what I am about to relate:  As my friend and I were getting into my car there was a young man who appeared very unkempt motioning to me he wanted to talk. I was about to drive away than remembered all the things that God had brought before me over the last little while. My friend sitting next to me was a street person whom God reached by His grace. There was some fear but I thought I have got to trust in the Sovereignty of God as I knew this was not a chance meeting. It was a privilege to give this young man some gospel literature and bring the gospel to him. He was very broken and said other Christians had talked with him 2 weeks prior. Of course he also needed help in a temporal way and God provided for that.

When I dropped him off, I was filled with tears as I thought of how I nearly passed by this young man because of his appearance.

“There go I except for the grace of God” I do not know whether I will ever hear from this young man again. I do know by the grace of God I will be more aware of street people and there need of the gospel.
It is our commission,” Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation”Mark 16:15

The Lord Jesus is building His Church out of “broken bruised reeds”

The Cast Down Pilgrim

Tough-Times-AheadOne of the rules I have heard to have a successful blog is not to talk about yourself. That thought is probably correct but I know there are some of God’s Children who have gone through and are still going through some of the things I am experiencing. If the comforts I am experiencing can help them than it is worth breaking the rule of a blog.
Certainly, I will not dwell on my trials because that does not bring glory to God. Instead I will take a few minutes of your time to “Lift our eyes to the mountains, from where shall my help come?  My help comes from the Lord who made heaven and earth. Ps.121:1,2
When we are weak physically and spiritually our great adversary attacks. Those attacks are usually very strong and can cause much pain. After he has caused us to sin than he puts us in deep guilt, he will cause us to lose assurance of our salvation and like a heavy sack over our shoulder we walk burdened down with the weight. Thanks be to God, it is at that time I am always reminded of the verse: “Ye are of God, my little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world.”(1 John 4:4 ASV)
“He that is in you” this is the Holy Spirit of God. Think of that for a moment! “But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwelleth in you, he that raised up Christ Jesus from the dead shall give life also to your mortal bodies through his Spirit that dwelleth in you.” (Romans 8:11 ASV) The same Spirit that “raised up Christ Jesus” is the power that gives us eternal life and causes us to persevere. When Satan is attacking we need to gain our strength from that indwelling Spirit of God.
How do we draw on the strength of the Spirit of God within?

Never Surrender

churchillMy husband is a great fan of Sir Winston Churchill, a great leader,determined and inspiring. During World War 2 this great orator inspired the British people to push on even during great suffering and loss of lives. One quote was,” I have nothing to offer but blood,tears toil and sweat.” Post war he addressed college students with this; ” Never,Never, Never, give up”

This history lesson is given because it has inspired my posting for today. Recently,I have heard of many Christians who are going through severe trials and maybe you are one of them.

“Sicknesses, deaths, losses, disappointments, partings, separations, ingratitude, slander, all these are common things. We cannot get through life without them. Some day or other they find us out. The greater are our affections the deeper are our afflictions, and the more we love the more we have to weep.”J.C. Ryle

There are times you may even feel like giving up. My encouragement to you would be, “Never,Never,Never give up” even in the midst of, “blood tears toil and sweat” Contrary to the prosperity gospel , Paul says in 2 Timothy 3 “Yea, and all that would live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution”~ We must stop talking about what we SHALL face and discuss how do I persevere through all this. Hebrews 12:1-3 is like a glass of cold water to a dying thirsty man. The author likens our journey to a race. The athlete must: A) work hard B) keep his eyes focused on the prize. A) Work hard = Read, meditate and obey the Word of God as it is the laver that supplies daily sanctification. Psalm 119:9 “Confess our sin” (and remember) “He is faithful and just to forgive us our sin and cleanse us from all unrighteousness”1John 1:9 We must not constantly dwell on our sin we are forgiven and set free~ “run with endurance the race that is set before us” This race has been put before us by the Sovereign God, our Heavenly Father. B) Keep our eyes looking to Jesus, He supplies all our strength to persevere. You see verse 2 says He is the ~The Author(leader, pioneer,captain) of our faith ~The finisher( perfecter, carries us through to perfect completion) ~Our Lord and Savior is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. He walked this road and suffered more than any of us. ~Remember the Gethsemane Garden, ” Not my will but thine be done” “sweating as it were great drops of blood” He did this ” for the joy set before Him.” Oh my suffering brothers and sisters He endured the cross the shame to reconcile us to God so we could become Sons, heirs and joint heirs with Him. And the glory which thou hast given me I have given unto them; that they may be one, even as we are one; (John 17:22 ASV) “He has brought me to his banquet hall, And his banner over me is love.” (S of S 2:4) ~Our Lord now reigns, “He has blessed us with EVERY spiritual blessing in the heavenly places with Him” Eph.1:3 ~Now in faith “consider Him” just let this sink deep into your heart. ~We must “Never,Never,Never give up!!! Our suffering is very small in comparison to our final glorification. ~“And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” (1 Peter 5:10 ESV) ~“Blessed is the man that endureth temptation; for when he hath been approved, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord promised to them that love him.” (James 1:12 ASV)

These are a few thoughts to encourage, if there are some reading this post and would like to add more to encourage, I would welcome your input.