Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

May the Lord bless you all with a wonderful and a Christ centered New Year. As this last day of 2010 was drawing to a close I was meditating on the reasons why so many Americans turn every year to gods and religions that are empty of truth and meaning. I think the curse of our times has been what A. W. Tozer once said, "The curse of everything today is that it has to be funny. If it is not funny, it is not popular."

In much of our Christian world in the West we have lost the sense of God's majesty and God's mystery. We have so trivialized our faith that we have removed the awe and wonder from it. Hence, many have sought for mystery, majesty and fulfillment in the false gods of the age. It was St. Augustine the bishop of Hippo who said, "Thou hast created us for Thyself and we are restless until we rest fully in Thee." Many Christian pastors and leaders have so trivialized the faith of our fathers and misrepresented it that they have been part of the problem of gutting the faith that they were sworn by a holy oath to defend and to proclaim.

Let us return to the worship of the Most High with humble hearts filled with praise and adoration for the finished wonders of His sovereign grace. May we find joy and peace in Christ. May we find our hearts filled with happiness and joy from the only fountain that can satisfy the spiritual thirst of our souls--the fountain filled with blood drawn from Emmanuel's veins!

"Change from glory into glory,

Till in heaven we take our place,

Till we cast our crowns before thee,

Lost in wonder, love, and praise."

Charles Wesley

Monday, November 29, 2010

Christian humility

I have been delivering a series of messages on Wednesday night on Spiritual leadership. One of the most important aspects of a true spiritual leader is Christ-like humility. I trust that the comments that follow on humility will be a blessing to all of you. May the Lord use all of us in His service.

Humility in the life of a leader

Another spiritual quality that a leader needs is humility. Those who are involved in serving and leading in the Kingdom of God must be people filled with meekness and true humility. As far as the world is concerned humility is a quality that is neither appreciated nor sought after. Most people, who have not been touched by God’s grace, have little respect for humility in a leader.

A true spiritual leader is known, not by self-advertisement, but by self-abasement. Jesus prepared His disciples for leadership by giving them a lesson on the importance of humility, “But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; and whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant.” John the Baptist also taught us that a spiritual leader has his focus on Christ and not on himself. John wrote, “He must increase but I must decrease.” John 3:30. The spiritual leader must point people to Christ and willingly attribute all the praise for his labors to Him and not draw attention to himself. Jeremiah the prophet said, “And seekest thou great things for thyself? Seek them not…” Jeremiah 45:5. Someone once said, “Great men never think they are great and small men never think they are small.” One sign of pride in a leader is when he parades his achievements around so others will know what he has accomplished. A spiritual leader does not forget what Proverbs 27:2 teaches, “Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger and not thine own lips.”

How important is humility? James the apostle wrote, “But he giveth more grace, Wherefore he saith, GOD RESISTETH THE PROUD, BUT GIVETH GRACE UNTO THE HUMBLE.” James 4:6. The opposite of humility is pride. James tells us that God resists the proud but pours out His grace on those who are humble. This should illustrate how important humility is for the spiritual leader. John Stott from England said,

“At every stage of our Christian development and in every sphere of our Christian discipleship, pride is the greatest enemy and humility our greatest friend.” John Stott, “Pride, Humility & God,” Sovereign Grace Online, September/October 2000,

Solomon also reminds us of the dangers of pride, “Pride goeth before destruction and an haughty spirit before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18.

Just what is humility? How can we define or explain humility? Here is a definition,

“Humility is honestly assessing ourselves in light of God’s holiness and our sinfulness. That’s the twin reality that all genuine humility is rooted in: God’s holiness and our sinfulness. Without an honest awareness of both these realities all self-evaluation will be skewed and we’ll fail to either understand or practice true humility.” C.J. Mahaney, Humility, (Multnomah Press, 2005), p. 22.

The most effective way for a spiritual leader to demonstrate humility is to devote himself to serving others for the glory of God. Cyprian, the bishop of Carthage, one of the early church fathers who was martyred for the faith, wrote this prayer prior to his martyrdom:

Almighty God, who resists the proud and gives grace to the humble: send thy Holy Spirit and let that mind be in us, which was also in Christ Jesus, that we may be meek and lowly of heart and never by our foolish pride provoke thine indignation… Teach us not to think of ourselves more highly than we ought to think; to be modest in speech, just and merciful in action and benevolent to all. Let us prefer nothing to him, who preferred nothing to our salvation; but grant us that adhering inseparably to his kingdom and standing bravely by his cross, we may be found faithful to death, and at the end may be admitted into the joy of his most blessed presence. Amen.”

Friday, October 22, 2010

Reading The Apostolic Fathers

I have enjoyed reading the Church Fathers in recent days. Here is a prayer by St. Augustine of Hippo when he was contemplating the love of God.

"You only I love; you only I follow; you only I seek; you only am I ready to serve. Because you alone are justly Lord, I desire to be under your rule. Command, I ask you, as you will, but heal and open my ears that I may hear your voice. Heal and open my eyes that I may see your beckoning. Tell me where I must go that I may see you; and I hope to do all that you command. Receive, I pray you, your fugitive, most clement Father and Lord. Enough have I served your enemies whom you have put under your feet. Enough have I been the plaything of deceits. Receive me, your servant, now fleeing from these things." Augustine

Here is another prayer by Cyprian, the martyred bishop of Carthage.

"Almighty God, who resists the proud and gives Grace to the humble: send thy Holy Spirit and let that mind be in us, which was also in Christ Jesus, that we may be meek and lowly of heart and never by our foolish pride provoke thine indignation, but, receiving into humble and thankful hearts the gift of thy providence and of thy grace, may thereby be continually refreshed. Teach us not to think of ourselves more highly than we ought to think; to be modest in speech, just and merciful in action and benevolent to all. Let us prefer nothing to him, who preferred nothing to our salvation; but grant us that adhering inseparably to his kingdom and standing bravely by his cross, we may be found faithful to death, and at the end may be admitted into the joy of his most blessed presence. Amen." Cyprian

The preciousness of these men and their writings fills us with great reverence to their amazing devotion to Christ. Many of the Church Fathers died as martyrs. The pride, arrogance and worldliness of many modern day professing Christians stands in stark contrast to these great men.

I am humbled and convicted of sin when I read their Christ exalting words and hear of their undying devotion to the Lord. May the Lord of glory fill us all with the gentle and meek spirit of these men and use us to walk with God in lowliness and holiness.

Pastor Dickie

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Dear Berean Family, I have been working on a series of messages on Wednesday night on Spiritual Leadership. I have been blessed in the preparation of those messages. One subject that burned in my heart this week in preparation was the need for spiritual passion in our love and devotion to Christ. I am going to share a few quotes that I came across that I trust will be a blessing to you all on being passionate in our devotion to the Lord Jesus.

The apostle Paul writes to the church at Philippi and says, “Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prized of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:12-14.

In his booklet on True Discipleship, William MacDonald described the zeal and passion that is necessary for the minister of God who would be a spiritual leader,

“A disciple can be forgiven if he does not have great mental ability. He can be forgiven also if he does not display outstanding physical prowess. But no disciple can be excused if he does not have zeal. If his heart is not aflame with a red-hot passion for the Savior, he stands condemned.
After all, Christians are followers of the One Who said, ‘The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.’ (John 2:17). Their Savior was consumed with a passion for God and for His interests. There was no room in His train for half-hearted followers.
The Lord Jesus lived in a state of spiritual tension. This is indicated by His words, ‘I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how am I straitened till it be accomplished.’ (Luke 12:50). And again by His memorable utterance, ‘I must work the works of Him that sent me while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.” (John 9:4).
The zeal of John the Baptist was attested by the Lord when He said, ‘He was a burning and a shining light.’ (John 5:35).”

Jim Elliot the martyr who died in Ecuador was a burning and shining light like John the Baptist. When Jim Elliot was meditating on Hebrews 1:7,He maketh his ministers a flame of fire,” he wrote in his journal: “Am I ignitable? God deliver me from the dread asbestos of ‘other things’ Saturate me with the oil of the Spirit that I may be a flame. But flame is transient, often short lived. Canst thou bear this my soul—short life? In me there dwells the Spirit of the Great Short-Lived, Whose zeal for God’s house consumed Him. ‘Make me thy fuel, Flame of God.’”
Here's my prayer tonight, "O Dear God, where are those spiritual leaders whose love and devotion to the Savior burns like a torch in the night? Where are those men whose brokenness, tenderness, humility, and godliness set them apart from the carnal, fleshly, and worldly hirelings that fleece Thy sheep? Give us, O Lord, such pastors and leaders whose only desire in life is to be faithful to Thy Son and His gospel of sovereign grace. We ask this in Jesus name, and for His glory alone, Amen."

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Coming Events!

We are praying that Pastor Vernon Higham from Cardiff, Wales may be able to be with us at Thanksgiving. We are waiting word from the Higham's. We have been so fortunate to have this special man of God with us over the last twenty years. Whenever we have the privilege of having Vernon and Morwren it is always a blessing. In the new year we also may have John Blanchard with us for our Easter weekend. Please keep these two dates on your calendars and plan to attend the services at Berean at that time.

My Sunday morning series on Isaiah is coming to an end. I have been overwhelmed by the positive emphasis that this book has given us. There can be no doubt that the Lord has a wonderful plan for His people in the coming years. Oh that the Lord would fill the earth with His glory and gospel and saturate it as the waters cover the seas.

This coming month of October we will be having our missions emphasis month. Let's pray and expect the Lord do great things for us as we support and pray for missions. In January I will be returning to South Africa to preach at the Black African Pastor's conference. Your prayers are very much appreciated.

God bless all of you,

In Christ, Pastor Dickie

Friday, September 17, 2010

The Judgment Seat Of Christ

We all have a date with destiny and the Lord when we die. Every child of God will stand before the eternal King to give an account of their life. This is an awesome thought. I find it hard to believe that so many Christians live as if that day will never come. Many professing Christians persue things that will matter little in that great day.

Momento Mori- "Remember that you must die." This Latin phrase should be our constant thought. If we have been justified by grace and have disciplined our lives we need not fear death or that meeting when we shall stand before the Lord face to face.

Do not waste your life. "Only one life to live, twill soon be past. Only what's done for Christ will last."

"And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgement." Hebrews 9:27

"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad." II Corinthians 5:10

What will be revealed about you on that great and fearful day? The Spirit of God is calling all of us to surrender our lives in holy devotion to the Lord of the universe who died on Calvary for our sins. This is the only noble life. This is the only true goal. May our passion be to live for the glory of God with our eyes on eternity.

May God's richest blessings be upon you all,

Love in Christ,

Pastor Dickie

Monday, July 19, 2010

Dear Berean Family,

In these days we need to be vigilant as there are heresies sweeping the Christian church that are dangerous and destructive. One heresy is The Word of Faith Movement. I have an excellent article by Gary Gilley on This Movement. Gary Gilley is an author that we use at Evangelical Press in England. His writings are always concise, penetrating, and helpful. If any of you would like to see some information on this please let me know and I will send Gary Gilley's article to you. A good book to read on this subject is Man As God by Curtis I. Crenshaw. Crenshaw is a Reformed theologian. This is a Reformed analysis of this movement.

I have been alarmed recently at the serious departures that many Christian pastors and theologians are making in the areas of worship, doctrine, and even Christian practice. This is a time for the Lord's people to stand tall for truth. My prayer is that the Reformed faith will be defended and proclaimed far and wide.

I love the Five Solas of the Christian Faith:

1. Sola Fide- by faith alone

2. Sola Scriptura- by the Scriptures alone

3. Sola Christus- by Christ alone

4. Sola Gratia-by grace alone

5. Soli Deo Gloria- to the glory of God alone

We should defend these historic positions of the Christian faith. Having these solas as a compass or guide serves to protect us from falling for the fads, heresies, and new and dangerous trends that pop up on the scene from time to time. This is why having a firm faith in the historic creeds and doctrines of grace such as Calvinism will protect the church from making mistakes in these crucial areas.

Dear Bereans, stand resolute against all heresy. God be with you.

In Christ, Pastor Dickie

Thursday, July 15, 2010

"Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting." Psalm 139:23-24.

A favorite quote of mine is, "You can fool some of the people all the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time." However true this may be we need to remember that we can never, ever, fool God. The wise man in proverbs tells us that, "The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good." Proverbs 15:3

May our daily prayer be that the Sovereign God of the universe would search our hearts and and show us our sins that we might humbly confess and forsake them. Only in this is there peace and confidence in the future.

Live my dear Berean friends with the understanding that the Lord sees and knows who you are and what you do.

Love in Christ,

Pastor Dickie

Monday, July 12, 2010

We are moving rapidly through the summer. It is hard to realize how fast the summer is passing by. All of this reminds me of how quickly time is rushing by bringing us closer every day to eternity. I am awed by the responsibility I have to preach the whole counsel of God to those who sit under my ministry. The great day of judgment will cause all of us who are pastors to tremble. In the near future I plan to bring a series of messages to our church on spiritual leadership. After nearly 45 years of ministry I have witnessed the rise and fall of many Christian leaders within the church. I hope I can share some of my observations with my Berean family so that we can all watch over our personal relationship with Christ and not make the same mistakes that so many others have made. Let us remember that to whom much is given much is required. May we all pray for wisdom and grace to live lives that are pleasing to the Lord that we have vowed to serve. Holiness, obedience, humility, and Christ likeness are the hall marks of those who would lead others in the Christian church. God bless all of you and may the Lord shine upon us at Berean! Our best days are just ahead.

Love in Christ,

Pastor Robert L. Dickie

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Home From England!

Had a wonderful trip with Rev. Bill Tipton. I was able to minister in several churches and encourage a number of pastors and Christians over in Great Britian. I had a profitable trip and board meeting with Evangelical Press. Much was accomplished and we are going to be printing a number of excellent books that I know will be a blessing to the Christian world. We also met with several pastors who go to Africa with me and had some wonderful fellowship and discussed plans for future conferences in South Africa. I am planning a conference at Berean sometime soon to encourage a positive world view for evangelism and outreach around the world. So over all I must praise the Lord for His goodness to me in these travels. Bill Tipton has been a friend for 45 years. I have been so blessed by his fellowship and his godly life. I praise God for such a faithful friend. Bill enjoyed England. This was his first trip over the pond!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Africa Conference 2010

Thank you for your prayers while we were in Africa!

We have returned safely and praise the Lord for His protection and blessing on our trip to South Africa. I spoke at two conferences and at three churches. We distributed a number of my books , What Bible Teaches About Worship and Living For Jesus. It is difficult for me to say how the Lord worked in our ministry. I will simply let the Lord reveal to us on the great Day what He was pleased to accomplish through our labors in Africa. I prayed and worked very hard to exalt our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. And I trust that the Lord was pleased to honor those unworthy efforts to serve Him.

I want to thank all of our Berean family for your prayers and support while we were away. I would also like to thank the team that went with me, Ben Dickie, Norm Walworth, Max Sharp and our assistant pastor Eric Stewart. They were tremendous. And the Lord gave us safety along the way. We landed at J- Burg and my first message was in Centurion which is north of J-Burg. Next we flew to Port Elizabeth and ministered to the Black Pastor's Conference. We then drove down to Cape Town for a few days. I unfortunately got sick with the flu and but recovered to be well enough to fly back to J-Burg and then preach at a conference on worship Bethany Baptist Church near Pretoria. The following day I spoke at Birchleigh Baptist Church in Johannesburg and at Constantia Park Baptist Church in Pretoria. I praise the Lord for whatever blessings and mercies He bestowed upon those messages and at those services.

We finished our trip with a visit to the Kruger National Park. That gave us a few days to rest and enjoy ourselves before the 17 hour flight home to Atlanta.

We are very tired but spiritually refreshed and glad to be back home with our families and with the Berean family.

I long for the Lord to open the windows of Heaven and to pour out His Spirit upon all the nations of the earth. May we all join in prayer to seek His blessing to that great end. God bless you all, In Christ, Pastor Bob

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Worship Conference in Centurion South Africa

Pastor Dickie gave four sermons yesterday at a conference in Centurion, South Africa on Worship. There was a large turnout from a number of different churches in the surrounding Johannesburg communities and positive feedback from many people in attendance as the Lord came down and spoke to their hearts.

The service was held at Bethany Baptist and they filmed all four talks of the conference. Norm Walworth ordered the DVDs and we will be able to burn copies back home in the States for those that wish to hear the message the Pastor shared.

The picture above was taken at the service today at Pastor Irving Steggles church. (Pictured left to right: Norm Walworth, Pastor Steggles, Pastor Bob Dickie, Ben Dickie, Max Sharp & Pastor Eric Stewart)

Pastor Eric Stewart had the opportunity to take the pulpit at Pastor Irving Steggles church this evening, while Pastor Dickie went to Constantia Park Baptist Church to share the Gospel.
Please continue to keep us in your prayers during our travels!

Ben Dickie

Port Elizabeth Pastor's Conference

The Pastor's conference had a great turnout and the men were blessed with the word. Norm Walworth is sitting here by the book table listening to a sermon by Pastor Dickie. These Pastor's our hungry for teaching and were taking advantage of the books that Evangelical Press brought to the conference.

Pastor Ronald Kalifungwa from Zambia is pictured here with Pastor Eric Stewart, Pastor Bob Dickie and Norm Walworth.

Pastor Kalifungwa is one of the most notable preachers in all of Africa and the Lord is using him in a powerful way in training other Pastor's who are eager to learn the Doctrines of Grace.

Monday, January 4, 2010

African Pastor's Conference 2010

We had our fist service at Bethany Baptist Church in Centurion, South Africa (near Pretoria).

Please keep us in prayer!
Monday and Tuesday we will be at Port Elizabeth speaking at a Black African Pastor's Conference.

Our desire is to exalt the Lord Jesus Christ!
Soli Dei Gloria
God Bless,