Friday, August 29, 2014

Being A Faithful Pastor

Charles Haddon Spurgeon

When I think of a faithful pastor I instinctively look to the Prince of Preachers--Charles Spurgeon. He is arguably the greatest pastor-preacher since the time of Christ. He certainly is in the last 200 years. Spurgeon's "Lectures To My Students" and his "All Round Ministry" are two of the finest books written for young ministers to read, study and follow. I have read and reread these treasures over and over again.

Recently, during my time of healing, I wrote this description of a faithful minister. This is the kind of pastor I long to be. Every pastor can say like the apostle Paul, "Who is sufficient for these things?" God's servants know that, "If the Lord does not build the house, they labor in vain that build it." May every faithful pastor and every faithful church member strive to be their best for the King they serve!

God’s Faithful Minister

The faithful minister is responsible to bring his congregation into God’s presence during worship. He will direct a worship service that is Christ-centered and full of reverence. He is extremely careful that his words, dress, and demeanor do nothing to draw attention to himself. He will bathe the preparations of the service in prayer and will long for his people to know something of the manifest presence of God in worship. He does not study to be silly, trite, flippant or casual. He knows he stands between heaven and hell for those who sit under his ministry. He is aware that eternal issues are at stake. His choice of sermon topics is motivated by the glory of God alone and not by his love of praise, success, or the approval of men. He does not covet the recognition of others but only seeks the approval of God. The faithful minister is a man of God. He is not a comic, a buddy, or a cool pastor. He is a priest before the holy altar. He knows that when worship takes place on the Lord’s Day that heaven and earth are mystically joined together. He models his service in the sanctuary on the principles of throne room worship that is taking place in heaven and not on the latest fad peddled by cheap hucksters parading as experts on church growth. The faithful minister knows that when people are in the presence of God that awe and wonder fill the sanctuary. He does not care whether he is popular, successful or appreciated by the world. He longs only to be faithful to his Lord and Savior. He trembles at the thought of entering the pulpit for he knows that he will give an account to the Lord one day for every word uttered in that sacred desk. The faithful pastor would rather not be in that office of a minister if he had his way for he knows how terrible is the judgement before him. But he is compelled by the call of God, that although he feels utterly unworthy to be a preacher of God’s grace, he can say with the apostle Paul, “For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for woe is me if I do not preach the gospel.” The faithful minister does not hesitate to proclaim the whole counsel of God. He is not afraid to stand for every truth that God has laid out in Scripture. Therefore, the faithful minister is not an opportunist, he is not a man motivated by convenience; he is a man motivated by conviction and he does not seek the flattery of men or the praises of the religious establishment. He is willing to walk alone if necessary. He is willing to die to self and often does. He is willing to pay whatever price or suffer any misunderstandings just so long as he can exalt and magnify his Lord. The faithful minister knows he will be misunderstood, rejected, and persecuted, for so persecuted were the prophets of God that went before him. The faithful minister is a gift to the church. Many are the impostors who rush to take upon themselves the high calling of the ministry. But the faithful minister is like Isaiah of old when he says, “Woe is me, for I am undone!  Because I am a man of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.” Isaiah 6:5. The faithful minister walks with Jesus, and he cherishes that privilege of being called the friend of God. The faithful minister does not beg, does not grovel, and does not mimic the ways of the world. He only seeks to be conformed into the image of God’s Son. When life is done and the sun is setting on his ministry. He will look back through all of the years of battle, of loneliness, of service and spiritual warfare, and he will give God alone all the glory. And he will be the first to bow in humble adoration and say to His God, “You alone are worthy to be praised!” 

Blessed is that church that  has a faithful minister.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

A Report On The War In Gaza

Take 5 Minutes To 
Watch This!

This is worth the five minutes of watching. It gives a short, clear and compelling view of the real situation we are facing in the West with the false religion of Islam. There has never been a religion or ideology so dangerous as this one. We who know the precious gospel of Jesus Christ must pray for the peace of Israel, for the conversion of the nations of the earth, and for those who have been deceived by all false religions. 

Let us pray for Muslims everywhere. Let us live before our Muslim neighbors and all of our neighbors a godly life that draws attention to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The only hope of the nations is the saving power of the gospel of Christ. If ever there was a time to let our light shine, it is today. Spiritual darkness engulfs the land. Confusion reigns everywhere. Too many of the people who claim to know the Lord are poorly informed, filled with apathy, living a life more characterized by decadence than devotion, and rarely take the time to pass out a tract, or tell someone about the Lord Jesus Christ. It is time to make a difference. It is time to wake up from our spiritual sleep.  As the apostle Paul said, "Now is the time, now is the day of salvation." 

God bless you all,

Pastor Dickie

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Conrad Mbewe On the History of Reformed Worship

This is a brief video of Conrad Mbewe on the history of reformed worship. It's not long but is very helpful and recognizes the main reason so many are worshipping God in an unbiblical way. Conrad addresses this problem and lays the fault at our departure from obeying the guidelines of the Word of God.

The following material
 is from my book
"What The Bible Teaches About Worship"

Jesus Christ our Lord said, "…true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth for the Father seeketh such to worship him" (John 4:23).  One of the most amazing facts about God is that He is seeking a people to worship His Son Jesus Christ.  If you have become a Christian, one of the primary purposes of your salvation is that you might joyfully worship the Son of God.  There is nothing in the Christian life of any greater importance than this.  And yet, how tragic that we find so few Christians who either understand the nature of true spiritual worship or who practice true spiritual worship.  We should ask ourselves right here at this point - is there a true spirit of worship in our hearts and in our churches?  

           A.W. Tozer once wrote, “There are today many millions of people who hold ‘right opinions’ probably more than ever before in the history of the church.  Yet, I wonder if there was ever a time when true spiritual worship was at a lower ebb.  To great sections of the church, the art of worship has been lost entirely, and in its place has come that strange and foreign thing called the ‘program.’  This word has been borrowed from the stage and applied with sad wisdom to the type of public service which now passes for worship among us.”1

Biblical and spiritual worship is the soul's longing to see the glory and the beauty of Christ.  When worshippers see Christ, they will have the joy of experiencing the presence of Christ.  Worship is at its fullest and richest point when our souls are lost in the wonder of the glory and majesty of God.  Much of what passes for worship today will not produce this. The shallow and superficial services that characterize this present generation are not producing true worshippers or producing great saints.

The great English expositor G. Campbell Morgan, who was the predecessor of Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, defined true worship in this way, 

What is worship?  The essential and simple meaning of the word, and therefore the fundamental thought is that of prostration, of bowing down.  Worship suggests that attitude which recognizes the throne…It is a word full of force, which constrains us, and compels us to the attitude of reverence.”2

In order for us to understand what the Bible teaches about  worship and to realize exactly what it is that the Father is seeking of us, we need to examine worship at its purest level.  When we turn to the Scriptures, we find many examples of people who worshipped God.  But the clearest and most sublime example of worship given to us in the Scripture is the picture that John draws for us in the book of Revelation.  In Chapters 4-5, the Lord pulls the curtains back and allows us to get a glimpse of what we will call Throne-Room Worship.  In these two chapters, we actually see a worship service taking place in heaven in the throne room of God.  If we are to worship biblically, we must make certain that our worship on earth reflects the example and direction of heavenly worship.

My desire and prayer is that the church of Jesus Christ will once again discover true worship.  And, it is my prayer that the church will return to biblical Throne-Room worship. 

Great Fellowship With
Conrad Mbewe

What a wonderful time a number of pastors and leaders from Berean had with this dear servant of God. As we enjoyed an evening together fellowshipping around the Word of God Conrad shared with us from John chapters 15 and 16 and gave us some instruction on the blessing of the Holy Spirit. During this time Dr. Mbewe also shared a list of some of the books that impacted his life during the formative years of his ministry. The list began with the impact the Romans series by Martyn Lloyd-Jones had on his life. Then he mentioned Pink’s Sovereignty of God, The Forgotten Spurgeon by Ian Murray, and also Berkhof’s Systematic Theology. The stories and the insights he shared with us that he gleaned from these books was fascinating and challenging. I commented to Conrad that many of these books were also used of the Lord to edify and bless our lives as well.

Dr. Mbewe also shared the dangerous trends seen in the West as Postmodernism continues to ravage the western world. The impact of this philosophical virus distorts the ability of the church to understand truth. Postmodernism also brings deadly and unbiblical practices into our worship  services and church life. This problem is far more prevalent than most of us realize. My recent reading of the book The Tangible Kingdom brought this home to me in a shocking manner. 

Conrad has been at his church for approximately 34 years. During that time he has not changed, wandered, or departed in any way from the biblical principles that were a part of that formative period in his life and ministry. This kind of faithfulness and fidelity is impressive. Yet, during that time they have seen remarkable growth, blessing, and amazing visitations from the Lord in their ministry in Zambia. God’s Spirit moves and stirs His church at different times or seasons according to His sovereign will. The Western world is witnessing a dying church. The cause is the departure from biblical doctrine and worship. Instead of returning to the things that have blessed the church in the past and led to revival the church is turning to man made programs and methodologies to do the work of God. The buzz, excitement, and results are superficial as we saw with the Willow Creek phenomena. The new ways of doing church are actually destroying Christianity in the West. I am struck by the testimony of people like Conrad Mbewe and Ronald Kalifiungwa who demonstrate that God is blessing the great old truths without having to compromise with the spirit of the age. 

Dr. Mebewe shared the need for the church to be the church. He stressed the need to be holy, Spirit filled, utterly dependent upon God, and faithful in our proclamation of the doctrines of grace.

During my convalescence at home I have been working on a new book, The Foundations of Godly Living. My prayer is that those who know the Lord will demonstrate the marks of godliness in their daily lives. Let me ask a few questions for you to reflect on, "What does it mean to be godly?" "What is the evidence of godliness in our lives?" "What things can we do to promote godliness in our lives?" Answer these questions and then evaluate your own life. I plead with all of our Berean family to live for Christ with undivided devotion. 

Paul taught us, "Teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present age." Titus 2:12.

Looking forward to the fall, winter, and the new year I am excited to have some of our dear friends coming to minister to us. We have Jerry Marcillno for our men's retreat, and in the New Year we have some of our dear brothers from Brazil coming. I also hope to have Dewi and Mari Higham with us in the New Year. I will be checking with Dr. Edgar Andrews for we will be having the new pastor from the Campus Church in Welwyn Garden City visiting us this coming year as well.

I am very grateful for the men we have at Berean who can fill the pulpit for me during my absence. Pastor Bill Tipton, Pastor Eric Maynard, my elders and some of our deacons, and even several other new men in our church who have been able to fill in for me on Wednesday night. How blessed we are to have these dedicated and gifted men in our midst.

Our pastor's fellowships have been a wonderful blessing to a number of Christian leaders, pastors, and friends. By God's grace may we strengthen one another with mutual love and encouragement. 

Thanks again for your continued prayers.


Pastor Dickie

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

A Christian Response To The Riots In Ferguson, Missouri

A Christian Response to the Riots in Ferguson, Missouri

Every Christian is concerned about justice. When people break the law, they should be held accountable regardless of their race or color. Christians cannot be consistent with the teachings of the Bible if they make decisions based on any form of prejudice. The Bible teaches us in the Ten Commandments, “Thou shalt not kill,” and “Thou shalt not steal.”The Bible also teaches us to obey the civil authorities that govern over us. Romans 13:1, “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities…and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.” These basic laws are taught in the Bible. A nation cannot survive where there is a disrespect for biblical law. Anarchy is the result of lawlessness. 

The shooting death of a young unarmed black youth in Ferguson, Missouri has ignited riots and civil disobedience in that community. This incident has attracted many civil rights leaders. Without all the facts in, some of these leaders have already made alarming statements that have inflamed the situation which has led to more violence. 

All of us who know the Lord Jesus Christ desire nothing less than true peace and justice to take place in our nation. Justice must be based on biblical law and righteousness. Peace cannot come from revenge, retaliation, or violence that leads to millions of dollars of looting and damage. This kind of behavior only promotes further racial division and distrust among our citizens.

Before anyone really knew the truth of what happened in Ferguson, Missouri, the situation was inflamed and exploited by those known for race baiting. The tragic death of this young man is being exploited by civil rights leaders and the embers of racial hatred and division are being fanned into a full blown blazing fire of hate. The scenes of violent disrespect for the law on the evening news is shocking and alarming.

It is important that all Christian ministers, black and white, call for true justice and calm in this situation. We must gather together as Christians and Americans to restore order, justice, and peace in this community and in our country. There is no excuse for the kind of civil disobedience we see in Missouri. We do not know what happened, as of yet. Bits and pieces of information are slowly filtering in, and to see black communities exploding into this kind of rage and violence needs to be explained. What is going on in black communities that is causing this kind of rage and racial hatred? What is being taught in black churches and by black civil rights leaders that evokes this kind of response?

Why is there no outrage to the thousands of black-on-black shootings  and murders that are taking place in many of our cities throughout the country? Between 1976 and 2011, there were 279,384 black murder victims; 262,621 were murdered by other blacks. That is approximately 7,550 blacks killed every year by other blacks. This makes the wars in the Middle East seem tame by comparison. During that same period, approximately 104 blacks every year are killed by police in the United States.(This is not to infer that those killed by the police were killed unjustly) This is 7,550 blacks killed by other blacks ratio to 104 blacks killed by police each year. Though blacks are 13 percent of the nation's population, they account for more than 50 percent of homicide victims. Black-on-black murder is far and away more deadly than murder by white police officers. One picture of black residents in Ferguson, Missouri  shows that they are wearing t-shirts that say, “Stop killing us.” Blacks killed by the police are a rarity in comparison to blacks killed by other blacks. Blacks are killing each other in alarming numbers. And when we consider the number of black abortions every year it is staggering to see the slaughter that is taking place by black on black crime. When blacks say, “Stop killing us” they should apply that to themselves. But there does not seem to be any outrage by the black community on these tragic black-on-black shootings and deaths. The number of white people killed by blacks in acts of violence far outnumber the deaths of blacks killed by whites including the police. In the community where I live, Flint, Michigan, there have been a number of whites murdered by blacks in some of the most vicious and violent forms of racial crime. One incident a few years ago involved the rape and murder of a number of white teens who stumbled on a gang of black youths. There were no riots from the white community. There were no marches or protests from the black civil rights leaders. The absence of white civil disobedience and calls for racial justice show just how far apart the two communities really are. And what if white teens were walking around in our cities playing the vicious and racial game called “knock out.” This is where black kids go up to unsuspecting whites (ladies, old men, girls or boys) and sucker punch them and knock them out cold! I can only imagine the outrage this would cause if white youths were doing things like this. All crime whether committed by blacks or whites should be condemned. There has been a tragic history in our country of white racism and bigotry. But this nation has made significant progress in addressing those problems. No one doubts that there is still more progress to be made. But the kind of response that we see in Ferguson, Missouri is totally unwarranted.

Is there a problem with racial hate crimes in America? Actually, the hate crime epidemic in America is an illusion. Hate crimes have never been more than a tiny fraction of overall violent crime in our country, and the numbers have actually been holding steady or decreasing in recent years. There are surprising statistics regarding interracial crime. It turns out that 80 percent of violent crimes involve an attacker and victim of the same race. For the 20 percent of violent crimes that are interracial, 15 percent involve black offenders and white victims; 2 percent involve white offenders and black victims; and 3 percent involve other combinations.” Whites are far more likely to be victims of racial crimes than blacks. When was the last time you saw a riot where whites torched the city and looted it because of a black-on-white crime?

What is not being explained by the black community is what was this young black man doing that caused his shooting death in the first place? We now have strong evidence that moments before his confrontation with the police, he had been involved in a strong armed robbery at a nearby convenience store. A short time later, as he is walking in the middle of the street causing a dangerous situation with traffic, he was asked by the police to move over to the side of the road. Was this an unreasonable request? Absolutely not. Had this young man respectfully obeyed this request, he most likely would be alive today. And the circumstances of just how and why he was eventually shot are still unknown. We are having some details filtering in. One witness, who is friends with the police officer who shot this young man, said the officer was being charged by the victim. The officer shot him numerous times until eventually he fatally shot him in the head to stop his advance.  Was the victim on any drugs? There are reports that he had been smoking marijuana. We do not know at this time. The evidence must be given time to come in before we can draw any definitive conclusions.

All Christians are deeply grieved that this young man lost his life. It seems so senseless that he died because of his own disrespect for the law. We do not know at this time if he was murdered, or if he was killed as a result of self defense as he charged the police officer. We do know that he would be alive today if he had just obeyed a reasonable request from the police officer who confronted him.

The rhetoric of Rev. Al Sharpton is despicable. This kind of rhetoric is only inflaming the situation. Now is the time for the servants of God to declare the biblical teachings that will guide us in our communities to know how to respond to these kind of tragedies. The mother of the victim says that the only thing that will bring justice is for the police officer to be arrested and to be held accountable for this murder. The problem is that at this moment, this dear grieving mother, does not know what the circumstances are surrounding the shooting of her son. Is the  police officer guilty of murder? If so, he must be prosecuted. But this mother, and all of the community, must be patient to wait for the forensic facts and the autopsy evidence to be brought out before they inflame the situation in the community. It is also very tragic to exploit a mother who lost her son by asking her to comment on the situation. Of course, she is traumatized. Of course, she is grieving. But she should not be speaking about this until she, like all of us, has all the evidence of what really happened. All parents, sympathize with her in her loss and grief. But if I put myself in her place, I can say that, in the midst of my grief, I would be absolutely appalled that my son was out strong-arm robbing stores and causing disturbances in the community and disrespecting the police. In the meantime, the rioting, violence, and civil disobedience is totally unwarranted. 

Where is the teaching from the Bible that warns against rebellion? Where is the teaching about stealing, hatred, and revenge? If the facts show that the police officer is guilty of murder, he should be tried and punished by God’s law. In the absence of knowing what really happened, we are seeing the black community responding with racial hatred and violence. This hatred threatens to spread to other communities and endanger all of our major cities and do irreparable damage to the relationship between blacks and whites for years to come. No nation can survive when respect for law disappears and when one or both sides of the conflict so distrust the other that the facts are always rejected and viewed with suspicion. Only the Gospel of Jesus Christ can bring people, communities and adversaries together. If we do not teach the principles of the Word of God, we will never  have true peace or justice in this land. 

This is the time for biblical patience. This is the time for people to remove race out of this discussion and demand biblical justice to be meted out to all those involved. If the facts and evidence show the police officer did, in fact, murder this young man, then he must be held accountable. If the facts and the evidence exonerates this police officer, he must not be made a scape goat to satisfy the demands of an angry mob of rioters. There is a strong chance that this officer was just doing his duty. Time will tell. If we continue to punish those individuals for doing their job, the time will come when it will be difficult to find quality young men who are willing to risk their lives protecting the community they live in. Let the pastors of the black community teach their parishioners that stealing, pillaging, name-calling and race-baiting is nothing less than sin and rebellion against the laws of a holy God. Let pastors of the white community teach the biblical law of love for all men and to treat all men with dignity and respect as those who have been made in the image of God. Pastors must call all men, black and white to bow to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Only then can we heal our land.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Three Books by Angelo Christopholos on the Dangers of Islam

 These books show us the dangers
 that Islam poses to the world today.

The Cry From Constantinople
relives the fall of that great Christian city and empire that fell to the Muslim armies in 1453. This event led to the eventual subjugation of much of southern Europe to Islam. The Islamic religion has been in a jihad against the West ever since it  stormed out of the deserts centuries ago. Islam has as its goal to impose itself on the entire world. This is a deadly and a very real threat to the entire world community.

The Cry From Baltimore tells the tragic story of the capture of a  Puritan village by Muslim pirates in 1631 on the coast of Ireland. Islam has been involved in slavery and warfare from its very inception. Contrary to what Muslims want to project about their religion, this religion is a worldview that has spread across the globe by the sword and by terror.  The story of these innocent people captured by Muslim slavers was a part of over several millions of White Europeans who were carried away into slavery by Muslim pirates and jhadists. 

The Constantinople Papers examines the evidence against Islam and demonstrates that this is not a peaceful religion.  The evidence is overwhelming and the verdict is in.

All three of these books can be ordered on Kindle, Nook and on your iPhone.

If you would like a paperback copy of any of these books please contact me at Berean Baptist Church. Copies of my other books can be ordered and previewed at my web site:

I want to urge all of our Berean Family to pray for the Christians in Iraq and all over the Middle East who are being hunted down, tortured, forced to convert to Islam, raped, and murdered by the followers of this evil ideology. Please keep informed concerning the atrocities that are taking place all over the world. I urge you to pass out these books on Islam to any friends or people you can to  educate them concerning this very dangerous religious ideology.

I would also ask our fellow Bereans to pray for the racial tensions that have arisen because of the shooting in Missouri. Our nation needs the gospel of Jesus Christ. Lost people are lawless, and rebellious. As tragic as the death of this young man is, and we all grieve over these things, we must pray that the truth will come out and that all people hold their opinions until the facts are clearly known. In the meantime, there is no excuse for rioting and pillaging. This godless behavior is sinful and is condemned by the Word of God. I pray that all ministers, black and white, will be calling for peace and justice. This is a time for prayer, patience, and demonstrating true Christian love. If those who are stirring up hatred and division have their way we may see utter chaos erupt in this nation. Pray for all of our leaders that they will have wisdom from God in time of confusion and racial division.

I am progressing with my healing and continue to thank those of you who have shown concern and have expressed your love to me at this time. I am deeply grateful to you for that. 

I am meeting  with our leaders and many of our people on a daily basis to  encourage them, inspire them, and to minister to them in the Lord. I hold all of you in my prayers on a daily basis.

My love to you all,

Pastor Dickie

Thursday, August 14, 2014

My Burden For America

My Burden For America

This is hard to watch but it contains a stirring message for all of us as Americans. I have a deep burden for our country. I grieve in my soul when I see things like this going on. I am aware that not all Muslims are terrorists. I know that. But I also know that many in the Islamic world hate the West and are committed to the destruction of not only our way of life but most importantly our faith in Jesus Christ. Only the Gosple of justifying grace that I shared in my last blog-post can change a person's life and be the message that God will use to bless the nations of the earth. But this does not negate our need to warn our nation about the spread and dangerous influence of this radical terrorist menace.

I urge all of you to read the three books by Angelo Christopholos:

1. The Cry From Constantinople
2. The Cry From Baltimore, Ireland
3. The Constantinople Papers- The Case Against Islam

Please read my article on the previous blog on justification by faith alone. May the Lord use us all to be messengers of His Gospel of grace and redeeming love.

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Dickie

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

He Covers Me! The Glory of Justification by Faith Alone.

Why Is Being Covered With Christ’s 
Righteousness So Important? 

Satan is called the accuser of the brethren. John, in Revelation 12:10 says, “…for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down” This evil and sinister enemy of God and of God’s people is described by the apostle Peter as a formidable foe that we should recognize as an ever present danger. In I Peter 5:8 the apostle says, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking him he may devour.” How does this dangerous enemy attack God’s people? First, the devil and his fallen angels (demons) will tempt us and harass us seeking to destroy our resistance to sin. He will use our fallen flesh and the world around us to get us to willfully violate the laws and commandments of God. Once we have sinned the devil will be quick to throw back into our face that we have sinned against a holy God. The devil will use what we know about God to cause a deep sense of guilt and shame and fill our hearts with sorrow. This skillful enemy knows that there is real guilt that comes as a result of sin. But this terrible foe does not remind us that if we have been justified that all of our sins, past, present and future have been forgiven. The devil uses half truths and lies to wage war against God’s children. He will say things like this,  “God is angry with you. How could God ever forgive you now? You are a hypocrite. You are a worthless and guilty person. You are deluded if you think that God will forgive you and your many sins. God may forgive others but your sins are so much worse than anyone else’s sins. God could never forgive you. You are lost. Your prayers and faith are meaningless.” Over and over the enemy of our souls will condemn, attack, and insinuate the most horrible things against us. He tells us that our heavenly Father is our enemy and that He will send us to Hell. Satan does not remind us of any of these verses:

Psalm 103:8-13, “The Lord is is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in  mercy. He will not always strive with us, nor will He keep His anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor punished us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is His mercy  to those who fear Him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. As a father pities His children, so the Lord pities those who fear Him. For He knows our frame, He remembers we are dust.”

Psalm 130:3-4, “If You, Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? But there  is forgiveness with You, that You may be feared.”

Romans 5:1, “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Romans 5:20, “Moreover the law entered that the offense might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.”

Hebrews 10:17, “…their sins and lawless deeds will I remember no more.”

I John 2:1-2, “My little children, these things I write to you, that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.”

This spiritual enemy ignores these precious promises of total forgiveness. Instead he attacks, accuses and fills our heart with doubts concerning God’s love for us. The doctrine of justification by faith  is important to our walk with God because the devil knows that a Christian without a full assurance of salvation will be confused, weak, and tormented by doubts. Such a Christian will lack joy, peace, and will be of little use in the kingdom of God. Many believers suffer through a life of torment and doubt because of these sinister accusations that are continually thrown in their face. The answer to these satanic attacks is to rush into the arms of our Savior and claim the blessings and peace that  come from being justified in the courtroom of heaven. O dear child of God, never forget that you are completely forgiven and that the holiness of Jesus Himself is laid on your precious soul. We are covered by the righteousness of Christ. We have peace with God right now. This is a peace that will never end. God will never turn away His precious children because they have God’s own Son standing as an advocate for them in His presence. The Lord Jesus holds up His wounded hands and cries, “Father look at My hands, My feet, My brow, My side! I paid for their sins in full by My own death on Calvary. Father forgive them for my sake! Have mercy on them for Me! Father this was our agreement. If I lived the life they should have lived and died the death they should have died You promised that You would have mercy upon them. O My Father, forgive them and see them covered with My righteousness.” How wonderful to know that the Father will never turn away the prayers of His Son who stands before the throne of God in heaven and pleads on our behalf forever. This is why justification is so important. There can be no joy or peace with God if we don’t keep this precious truth always in our minds. So we must look at this doctrine of justification very carefully and learn to understand the precious treasures and blessings it has for each of us.

Friday, August 8, 2014

I Love Biographies!

I love reading biographies. My all time favorite is Shadow of the Almighty by Elizabeth Elliot. Whenever I read this quote by Jim Elliot I am stirred in my heart for a greater love and passion for Christ. If you have not read this or have not read this recently may I suggest setting aside some time to refresh your soul with the treasures of this wonderful story of one of the great Christians in the last century. Here's the quote from Jim Elliot:

  “I walked out on the hill just now. It is exalting, delicious, to stand embraced by the shadows of a friendly tree with the wind tugging at your coattail and the heavens hailing your heart, to gaze and glory and give oneself again to God--what more could a man ask? Oh, the fullness, pleasure, sheer excitement of knowing God on earth! I care not if I never raise my voice again for Him, if only I may love Him, please Him . . . . If only I may see Him, touch His garments, and smile into His eyes--ah, then, not stars nor children shall matter, only Himself.” Jim Elliot

To my Berean family,

I am slowly making progress with the healing of my leg after surgery three weeks ago. I still need to keep my leg immobilized for another 5 weeks. I am getting stir crazy but have enjoyed having time to pray, read, meditate and work on my book, The Foundations of Godly Living. I believe that the holiness of God should mark our lives and our ministries. This quote from an unnamed source speaks to my soul:

“The holiness of God is the subject of constant proclamation among angels (Isa. 6:3; Rev. 4:8). Meanwhile, Christians no longer believe in it. They wear shirts proclaiming “Jesus is my homeboy” and use God as a comic-relief character in tasteless jokes—while God Himself smolders as a consuming fire (Heb. 12:29). Whole churches lift up their hands to God, begging Him to come down, heedless that God’s arrival might bring a death toll. To describe the problem more exactly, Christians have stressed having a relationship with God but have forgotten that He “dwells in inapproachable light” (1 Tim. 6:16).

When God comes among His people there will be a profound reverence, a holy fear, and joy unspeakable full of glory! I am praying for the Lord's blessing and presence on our services during these days of my healing. Be assured of my love and prayers.

God bless you all, 

In Christ, 

Pastor Dickie

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Great Fellowship With Some Special Leaders!

Today I had a wonderful meeting with key leaders from Berean. It was a special time of praise, prayer, fellowship, and sharing from the Word.  We are all so encouraged by the presence of God in our midst and what He is doing among us! Praise the Lord! 

I am excited to see how the Lord will lead us in the days ahead. Please keep me in your prayers as I recover and heal from this accident. God is on the throne. His ways are good and His mercy is everlasting. I have nothing but praise and thanksgiving for the Lord's goodness to me. During these days He has drawn near and been pouring out His Spirit upon me. I am finishing up the new book on "The Foundations of Godly Living."  This is something the Lord has laid on my heart and I am praying it will be a blessing to all of our Berean Family.

Here is a copy of the contents that this book will cover:

Table Of Contents:

1. Having A Correct View Of God- Theology

2. Living For The Glory Of God- Doxology

3. Holding A Biblical View Of The New Testament Church-

4. Being Covered By The Righteousness Of Christ-

5. Being Committed To The Lordship Of Christ- Christology

6. Living In The Spirit Of Prayer- Theology

7. Practicing The Presence Of Christ- Christology

8. Maintaining A Clear Conscience- Theology

9. Being Filled with the Holy Spirit- Pneumatology

10. Having A Positive View Of History- Eschatology


To God alone be all the glory!

Love in Christ, 

Pastor Dickie

Saturday, August 2, 2014

A Word of Thanks To My Berean Family

"James Haldane went to Morocco and after years he became a scholar of the Koran and of Arabic languages and dialects. For 39 years he visited a thousand villages and evangelised them thoroughly, and when he got back to the UK how many converts did he know as the fruit of his ministry? Not one. What a godly man he was who had seen the massiveness of the gospel. Isaiah humbly asks, 'Lord how long?' 'Until there is "the holy seed which will be a stump in the land.'" 

Would we view this man a successful evangelist or missionary? By today's standards many would not. James Haldane was not a man given to manufacturing cheap grace converts. He was thoroughly Reformed and passionate in his love for the gospel of grace. While many might have considered him a failure he will stand out in the last day as one of the great servants of God. May we not forget that some plant and some water but it is God who gives the increase. 

If we would be faithful in the work of the Lord we must  do His work in His way and leave the results to the Lord of the harvest. If we take short cuts to success we may find that in the end we have done nothing more than create tares among the wheat.

When I hear someone give a testimony I listen very carefully as to who is given credit for the work of grace in the soul. Is there anything that would suggest that the mighty God of the universe has indeed changed the heart and filled the soul with everlasting praise? I also look to see if the life of the one testifying measures up in any way to what they are saying.

If you really want to know what a true Christian looks like just read Psalm 119.  This Psalm says it all.

Thank you my dear Berean family for your love and prayers at this time.

Yours in Christ, 

Pastor Dickie