Quotes by Unknown Author
“Follow your heart” has ended more marriages, caused more addictions, mutilated more bodies, destroyed more souls, and ended more lives than Satan imagined. It’s one of Hell’s most effective slogans. Don’t follow your heart, follow the One who created it.
There is no doubt that the glories of nature reveal the glory of God (Psm. 19:1-6). He created the world in such magnificent splendor that His creative hand is seen at every turn. The vastness of the ocean (Job 38:16), the beauty of the stars (Psm. 8:1-4), the majesty of the mountains (Psm. 65:5-9), the wonder of the rain (Psm. 147:7-8) – these and so much more point to the awesome handiwork of the Creator.
God’s sovereignty never excuses man to be lazy or irresponsible. But knowing that He is in control should guard Christian people from the doomsday mentality that characterizes the global warming movement.
The universal sovereign rule of God with a view towards the incarnation which God preserves and governs all His creatures and their actions to the effect where our lives are not ruled by chance or fate, but according to the purposes of God.
Christians, if they are not the most inhuman people in the world, cannot believe what they profess – that men without repentance and faith must perish eternally – or they would be more earnest in endeavoring to save them. If I believed what they profess to believe – I would scarcely cease day or night to warn others of the wrath to come.
Contentment does not depend on what we have but on Who we have within and on what we have in Him.
Displaying a Christmas nativity scene is a long-standing tradition, but it can also present a bit of a skewed view of the actual events of Jesus’ birth. While each person depicted in a traditional nativity scene is a part of the Christmas story, not all the characters were present in one place on the night Jesus was born. Mary, Joseph, and Jesus were in a stable that night due to the overcrowding in Bethlehem’s inn (Luke 2:7), but the Bible never mentions whether or not animals were present—in fact, it never even mentions a stable. The shepherds, once told of Jesus’ arrival, left their flocks to worship the newborn King (Luke 2:16). However, the angels, which are often part of nativity scenes, bore the good news to the shepherds in the fields (Luke 2:8–14). As far as we know, there were no angels flying visibly over the place where Jesus was when the shepherds arrived. In addition, the wise men (the Bible never says how many there were) were also probably not present that first night. The magi visited Jesus some time later, when He was in a house (Matthew 2:1–11).
These doctrines build upon one another. The doctrine of total depravity establishes what the Bible teaches about the spiritual condition of unregenerate man and leaves one with the question “Who can be saved?” The doctrine of unconditional election then answers the question by declaring God’s sovereign choice in choosing to save people despite their depravity and based solely on God’s sovereign choice to redeem for Himself people from every tribe, tongue and nation. Next, the doctrine of limited atonement explains how God can be perfectly just and yet redeem those sinful people and reconcile them to Himself. The only solution to the depravity of man was for God to provide a Redeemer who would act as their substitute and suffer the wrath of God for their sins. He did this in the death of Christ, who, having been crucified, completely and totally “canceled out the certificate of debt…having nailed it to the cross” (Colossians 2:13-14). That leads to another question: how can a spiritually dead sinner who is hostile to God have faith in the atoning work of Christ on the cross? That question is answered by the doctrine of grace that is known as irresistible grace, the “I” in the acronym TULIP.
The doctrines of grace, and specifically the doctrine of limited atonement, empower evangelism rather than hinder it. Embracing these wonderful biblical truths allows one to boldly and clearly declare the good news of the gospel, knowing that the power is not in our presentation of it or in the audience’s ability to understand it or desire to believe it, but, instead, rests solely upon an all-powerful God who has determined to save people from every tribe, tongue and nation.
Another common misunderstanding about the doctrine of limited atonement is that it somehow lessens or diminishes the love of God for humanity. Yet, again, exactly the opposite is true. Of all of the doctrines of grace, the doctrine of limited atonement, when correctly understood, magnifies the love of God; it does not diminish it. Limited atonement reinforces the intensive love of God that is revealed in the Bible. God loves His people with a love that saves them from their sin, as opposed to the love of the unlimited atonement view that sees God’s love as being more general in nature. In the unlimited atonement view, He loves everyone in general but saves no one in particular and, in fact, leaves the matter of their salvation up to them. Which is more loving, a love that actually saves people or a love that makes salvation “possible” to those who are dead in trespasses and sins and unable to choose God?
One common misunderstanding about the doctrine of limited atonement is that this view somehow lessens or limits the value of the atonement of Christ. Yet exactly the opposite is true. Limited atonement correctly recognizes that Christ’s death was of infinite value and lacking in nothing. In fact, it is of such value that, had God so willed, Christ’s death could have saved every member of the human race. Christ would not have had to suffer any more or do anything different to save every human who ever lived than He did in securing the salvation of the elect. But that was not God’s purpose in sending Christ to the cross. God’s purpose in the atonement was that Jesus would secure forever the salvation of those the Father had given to Him (Hebrews 7:25). Therefore, while Christ’s atonement was limited in its intent or purpose, it was unlimited in its power.
If one holds to an unlimited atonement while denying universal salvation, one ends up with a redemption that leaves men not totally free or actually redeemed, a reconciliation that leaves men still estranged from God, a propitiation that leaves men still under the wrath of God, and a substitutionary death that still makes the sinner himself help pay the debt of his sin. All of these aspects of the atoning work of Christ then become nothing more than a possibility that relies upon man to make them a reality.
If Jesus actually stood in my place and bore my sin on the cross as the Bible teaches, then I can never be punished for that sin. In order for Christ’s atonement to truly be a substitutionary or vicarious atonement, then it must actually secure a real salvation for all for whom Christ died. If the atonement only makes salvation a possibility, then it cannot be a vicarious atonement. If Christ acted as a real and true substitute for those for whom He died, then all for whom He died will be saved. To say that Christ died a vicarious death in the place of all sinners but that not all sinners will be saved is a contradiction.
Many theologians use the word “vicarious” to describe Christ’s atonement. This word means “acting on behalf of” or “representing another” and is used to describe “something performed or suffered by one person with the results accruing to the benefit or advantage of another.” The vicarious atonement of Christ means He was acting as a representative for a specific group of people (the elect) who would receive a direct benefit (salvation) as the result of His death.
[Definite] atonement [teaches] that [Christ’s death] was specific in whom it covered (God’s people), was substitutionary in nature (He actually bore their sins on the cross), and actually accomplished what God intended it to do (justify many). Clearly, here is a picture of an intentional, definite atonement. Christ died not simply to make justification a possibility but to actually justify those He died for. He died to save them, not to make them savable.
We should find the assurance of our salvation in the objective truth of God’s Word. We should have confident trust that we are saved based on the promises God has declared, not because of our subjective experiences.
The assurance of salvation is, simply put, knowing for sure that you are saved.
The word redeem means “to buy out.” The term was used specifically in reference to the purchase of a slave’s freedom. The application of this term to Christ’s death on the cross is quite telling. If we are “redeemed,” then our prior condition was one of slavery. God has purchased our freedom, and we are no longer in bondage to sin or to the Old Testament law. This metaphorical use of “redemption” is the teaching of Galatians 3:13 and 4:5.
Scripture is quite clear that redemption is only possible “through His blood,” that is, by His death (Colossians 1:14).
We are called to be world changers not world chasers.
The name of Jesus is not a magic incantation that causes demons to flee from before us. The seven sons of Sceva are an example of what can happen when people presume an authority they have not been given (Acts 19:13–16). Even Michael the archangel did not rebuke Satan in his own power but said, “The Lord rebuke you!” (Jude 1:9). When we start talking to the devil, we run the risk of being led astray as Eve was (Genesis 3:1–7). Our focus should be on God, not demons; we speak to Him, not them.
The streets of heaven will be filled with former captives who, through no merit of their own, find themselves redeemed, forgiven, and free. Slaves to sin have become saints. No wonder we will sing a new song – a song of praise to the Redeemer who was slain (Revelation 5:9). We were slaves to sin, condemned to eternal separation from God. Jesus paid the price to redeem us, resulting in our freedom from slavery to sin and our rescue from the eternal consequences of that sin.
There are some false teachers who take the concept of kenosis too far, saying that Jesus gave up all or some of His divine nature when He came to earth. This heresy is sometimes referred to as the kenosis theory, but a better term is kenoticism or kenotic theology, to distinguish it from biblical understanding of the kenosis.
The kenosis was a self-renunciation, not an emptying Himself of deity. Nor was it an exchange of deity for humanity. Jesus never ceased to be God during any part of His earthly ministry. He did set aside His heavenly glory. He also voluntarily refrained from using His divinity to make His way easier. During His earthly ministry, Christ completely submitted Himself to the will of the Father.
True faith goes beyond a simple acknowledgement of God’s existence to a life-changing reliance on who God is, as revealed in the Bible.
Faith is not something we conjure up on our own, nor is it something we are born with, nor is faith a result of diligence in study or pursuit of the spiritual. Ephesians 2:8-9 makes it clear that faith is a gift from God, not because we deserve it, have earned it, or are worthy to have it. It is not from ourselves; it is from God. It is not obtained by our power or our free will. Faith is simply given to us by God, along with His grace and mercy, according to His holy plan and purpose, and because of that, He gets all the glory.
We may not consider any writings of men, however holy these men may have been, of equal value with the divine Scriptures, nor ought we to consider custom or the great multitude, or antiquity, or succession of times and persons, or councils, decrees or statutes, as of equal value with the truth of God, since the truth is above all; for all men are of themselves liars and lighter than vapor.
The worst thing we can do is try to become our children’s friend instead of parent.
Teenagers typically share certain characteristics. First, they are going through the stage in life where they believe they know all there is to know and what they don’t know isn’t worth knowing. Second, the hormones and chemicals charging through their brains and bodies hinder them, often rendering them incapable of reasoning as rational adults. They want what they want when they want it, and often don’t have any clue that what they are asking for will hurt them. It is the job of the parents to keep their children safe from themselves as they negotiate this difficult time of life.
Calvinists/Reformed thinkers maintain that God limits the atonement by choosing those whom He will save, and thus God only placed on Christ the sins of those He had chosen for salvation. The Arminian/Wesleyan position states that God does not limit the reparation of Christ, but instead it is humanity that limits the atonement by freely choosing to accept or reject the offer that God makes to them for salvation.
Since not everyone will be saved, there is one inescapable fact to understand: the atonement of Christ is limited. If it isn’t, then universalism must be true, and yet Scripture clearly teaches that not everyone is going to be saved. So, unless one is a universalist and can defeat the biblical evidence above, then one must hold to some form of limited atonement.
Faith is the empty hand that takes hold of the Savior.
Although good works cannot put away our sins, and endure the severity of God’s judgment, yet are they pleasing and acceptable to God in Christ, and do spring out necessarily of a true and lively faith; insomuch that by them a lively faith may be as evidently known as a tree discerned by its fruits.
You’ll find wisdom at the intersection of truth and love.
Let me never forget that the heinousness of sin lies not so much in the nature of the sin committed, as in the greatness of the Person sinned against.
The church’s unique, God-given purpose does not lie in political activism. Nowhere in Scripture do we have the directive to spend our energy, our time, or our money in governmental affairs. Our mission lies not in changing the nation through political reform, but in changing hearts through the Word of God. When believers think the growth and influence of Christ can somehow be allied with government policy, they corrupt the mission of the church. Our Christian mandate is to spread the gospel of Christ and to preach against the sins of our time. Only as the hearts of individuals in a culture are changed by Christ will the culture begin to reflect that change.
The first truth is that the will of God permeates and supersedes every aspect of life. It is God’s will that takes precedence over everything and everyone (Matthew 6:33). God’s plans and purposes are fixed, and His will is inviolable. What He has purposed, He will bring to pass, and no government can thwart His will (Daniel 4:34-35). In fact, it is God who “sets up kings and deposes them” (Daniel 2:21) because “the Most High is sovereign over the kingdoms of men and gives them to anyone He wishes” (Daniel 4:17). A clear understanding of this truth will help us to see that politics is merely a method God uses to accomplish His will. Even though evil men abuse their political power, meaning it for evil, God means it for good, working “all things together for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).
You can measure the character of a man by the size of the things that make him angry.
Death by crucifixion seems to include all that pain and death can have of the horrible and the ghastly, dizziness, cramp, thirst, starvation, sleeplessness, traumatic fever, tetanus, shame, long continuance of torment, horror of anticipation, mortification of open wounds, breathlessness, all intensified just up to the point at which they can be endured at all, but stopping short of the point which would give the sufferer the relief of unconsciousness. The unnatural position made every movement painful, the lacerated veins and crushed tendons throbbed with incessant anguish. The wounds inflamed by exposure gradually gangrened, the arteries especially at the head and stomach became swollen, compressed with surcharged blood while each variety of misery went on gradually increasing. There was added to them the intolerable pang of a burning and raging thirst. All these physical complications cause an internal excitement and anxiety and in all this you couldn’t catch your breath.
And whatever cross I am required to bear, let me see Him carrying a heavier.
The old cross slew men; the new cross entertains them. The old cross condemned; the new cross amuses. The old cross destroyed fleshly confidence; the new cross encourages it. The old cross was an emblem of shame; the new cross is jewelry.
Joy is the winsome magnet that draws people in because it is the one thing they do not have.
The church has existed from the beginning of the world and will last until the end. That appears from the fact that Christ is the eternal King, from which it follows that He cannot be without subjects. And this holy church is preserved by God against the rage of the whole world. It shall never be destroyed even though for a while it may appear very small and may even seem to be snuffed out.
The true greatness of any church in not how many it seats but how many it sends!
Encouragement is prompted by love and directs toward the fear of God.
The thought hit me like a bell rung in the dark, silent hall. So far, none of the scary, negative arguments against lust had succeeded in keeping me from it. Fear and guilt simply did not give me resolve; they added self-hatred to my problems. But here was a description of what I was missing by continuing to harbor lust: I was limiting by own intimacy with God. The love He offers is so transcendent and possessing that it requires our faculties to be purified and cleansed before we can possibly contain it. Could He, in fact, substitute another thirst and another hunger for the one I had never filled? Would Living Water somehow quench lust? That was the gamble of faith.
Fly from all occasions of temptation, and if still tempted, fly further still. If there is no escape possible, then have done with running away and show a bold face and take the two-edged sword of the Spirit. Some temptations must be taken by the throat as David killed the lion; others must be stifled as David hugged the bear to death. Some you had better keep to yourselves and not give air. Shut them up as a scorpion in a bottle. Scorpions in such confinement die soon, but if allowed out for a crawl and then put back into the bottle and corked down, they will live a long while and give you trouble. Keep the cork on your temptations, and they will die of themselves.
It’s easier to resist temptation at a distance than when it is near.
The best remedy for a sick Church is to put it on a missionary diet.
Missions is not the “ministry of choice” for a few hyperactive Christians in the church. Missions is the purpose of the church.
Hope: A trusting expectation that God is going to keep His word.
[We must avoid] carnal fear; a man-fearing spirit; a shrinking from reproach and duty; reasoning around your cross; a shrinking from doing your whole duty by those of wealth or position; a fearfulness that someone will offend and drive some prominent person away; a compromising spirit.
Unbelief – a spirit of discouragement in times of pressure and opposition; lack of quietness and confidence in God; lack of faith and trust in God; a disposition to worry and complain in the midst of pain, poverty, or at the dispensations of Divine Providence; an overanxious feeling whether everything will come out all right.
Unbelief is not the cause of sin; sin is the cause of unbelief.
The undisciplined is a headache to himself and a heartache to others, and is unprepared to face the stern realities of life.
One day George Mueller began praying for five of his friends. After many months, one of them came to the Lord. Ten years later, two others were converted. It took 25 years before the fourth man was saved. Mueller persevered in prayer until his death for the fifth friend, and throughout those 52 years he never gave up hoping that he would accept Christ! His faith was rewarded, for soon after Mueller’s funeral the last one was saved.
Are not our prayers so often ineffective and powerless – and sometimes even prayerless – because we rush unthinkingly and unpreparedly into God’s presence, without realizing the majesty and glory of the God Whom we are approaching, and without reflecting upon the exceeding great riches of His glory in Christ Jesus, which we hope to draw upon?
Prayer is measured, not by time, but by intensity.
The posture in which we pray is immaterial. God will listen whether we kneel, or stand, or sit, or walk, or work.
The best prayer does not seek God’s gifts but the experience of His person.
Soul winning should lead to soul building.
Present day evangelism commends a Savior from Hell rather than from sin. This eternally fatal deception seeks an escape from God’s eternal wrath, with no intention of being delivered from sin, carnality and worldliness.
Teacher: Susie what do you want to be when you grow up?
Susie: I want to be a doctor.
Teacher: How wonderful! And what about you Julie?
Julie: I want to be a soldier.
Teacher: How commendable! And what about you Hannah?
Hannah: When I grow up I want to be a wife and mother!
Teacher: [dead silence]…
The death of Jesus Christ is not the end of the story; it is the theme of the story – beginning to end.
You can never conquer sin with an excuse.
Man, it’s great to be in the thick of the fight, to draw the old Devil’s heaviest guns, to have him at you with depression and discouragement, slander, disease! He doesn’t waste time. He hits good and hard when a fellow is hitting him. You can always measure the weight of your blow by the one you get back. When you’re on your back with fever and at your last ounce of strength, when some of your converts backslide, when you learn that your most promising inquirers are only fooling, when your mail gets held up and some don’t bother to answer your letters, is that the time to put on your mourning suit? No Sir! That’s the time to pull out the stops and shout hallelujah! The old fellow’s getting it in the neck and he’s giving it back. And all of heaven is watching over the battlements: “Will he stick it out?” And as they see who is with us, as they see around us the unlimited reserves, the boundless resources, as they see the impossibility of failure with God, how disgusted and sad they must be when we run away. Glory to God! We’re not going to run away. We’re going to stand.
Come work for the Lord. The work is hard, the hours are long, and the pay is low, but the retirement benefits are out of this world.
Serving is our duty; results are God’s responsibility.
In Christ we have a love that can never be fathomed; a life that can never die; a righteousness that can never be tarnished; a peace that can never be understood; a rest that can never be disturbed; a joy that can never be diminished; a hope that can never be disappointed; a glory that can never be clouded; a light that can never be darkened; a happiness that can never be interrupted; a strength that can never be enfeebled; a purity that can never be defiled; a beauty that can never be marred; a wisdom that can never be baffled; and resources that can never be exhausted.
The attitude within is more important than the circumstances without.
God has given us people to love and things to use, not people to use and things to love.
He who has God and everything else does not have more than He who has God alone.
People love God everywhere except on His throne.
Lord, I am willing to receive what You give, to lack what You withhold, to relinquish what You take, to suffer what You inflict, to be what You require.
When we can truthfully say to our Father, “All that I am and have is Thine,” then He can say to us, “All that is Mine is thine.”
Biblical Christianity is “standing on the promises”, while cultural Christianity is “sitting on the premises”.
Christianity is Christ, and if He is not who He said He was, and if He did not do what He said He had come to do, the foundation is undermined and the whole superstructure will collapse. Take Christ from Christianity and you disembowel it, there is nothing left!
The Christian message is for those who have done their best and failed!
In 1950, the great Scottish American preacher Peter Marshall stood before the United States Senate and he explained it this way: The modern challenge to motherhood is the eternal challenge – that of being a godly woman. The very phrase sounds strange in our ears. We never hear it now. We hear about every other kind of women – beautiful women, smart women, sophisticated women, career woman, talented women, divorced women, but so seldom do we hear of a godly woman… I believe women come nearer fulfilling their God-given function in the home than anywhere else. It is a much nobler thing to be a good wife than to be Miss America. It is a greater achievement to establish a Christian home than it is to produce a second-rate novel filled with filth. It is a far, far better thing in the realm of morals to be old-fashioned than to be ultramodern. The world has enough women who know how to hold their cocktails, who have lost all their illusions and their faith. The world has enough women who know how to be smart. It needs women who are willing to be simple. The world has enough women who know how to be brilliant. It needs some who will be brave. The world has enough women who are popular. It needs more who are pure. We need women…who would rather be morally right that socially correct
If traces of Christ’s love-artistry be upon me, may He work on with His divine brush until the complete image be obtained and I be made a perfect copy of Him, my Master.
Jesus has gone to prepare a place for us, and the Holy Spirit has been sent to prepare us for that place.
We cannot be men of prevailing prayer unless we study God’s Word to find out His will for us.
Great pray-ers have always been great students of the Word of God.
The thing that makes men and rivers crooked is following the line of least resistance.
To seek unity with false prophets without challenging their errors leaves one’s own beliefs open to questions. Those who defend heretics, even if they do not believe in their teachings, are guilty of lending credibility to their heresies, and will be held accountable to God for the souls that are destroyed as a result. It’s up to those that know the truth to defend the Church against false teachers whatever the cost to unity or to personal benefit.
The fruit of the Spirit grows in the womb of adversity.
The moment slothfulness begins, that moment dangers stand thick about us.
Lord grant that the fire of my heart may melt the lead in my feet.
When a general gets too far ahead of his troops, he’s often mistaken for the enemy.
The Christian leader has a will totally willing at all times to will the will of God.
The world needs men who cannot be bought; whose word is their bond; who put character above wealth; who possess opinions and a will; who are larger than their vocations; who do not hesitate to take chances; who will not lose their individuality in a crowd; who will be honest in small things as in great things; who will make no compromise with wrong; whose ambitions are not confined to their own selfish desires; who will not say they do it “because everyone else does it;” who are true to their friends through good report and evil report, in adversity as well as in prosperity; who do not believe that shrewdness, cunning and hardheadedness are the best qualities for winning success; who are not ashamed or afraid to stand for the truth when it is unpopular, who can say “no” with emphasis, although all the rest of the world says “yes.”