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    • By 1Timothy115 in Devotionals
         11
      Psalms 119:1-8                                         Sep. 5 - Oct. 2, 2019
      1 ALEPH. Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD.
      2 Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart.
      3 They also do no iniquity: they walk in his ways.
      4 Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently.
      5 O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes!
      6 Then shall I not be ashamed, when I have respect unto all thy commandments.
      7 I will praise thee with uprightness of heart, when I shall have learned thy righteous judgments.
      8 I will keep thy statutes: O forsake me not utterly.
      The following verse stood out to me...
      5 O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes!
      At first glance it seemed to me this person’s soul is poured out with intense desire to have God’s direction in keeping His Word.
      I made a small wood fire in our backyard for my granddaughter, Julia, since she would be staying overnight with us. My wife and Julia stayed outside at the fire for about half an hour. Then, I found myself alone to watch the fire die out on a particularly lovely evening. So I took my verse from above and began to repeat it for memorization. As I repeated the verse, I tried to contemplate the words and apply them to what I was seeing around me. 
      The moon and stars were out now peering through the scattered clouds above.
      [Genesis 1:16 And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. Genesis 1:17 And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, Genesis 1:18 And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.]
      Thought 1         
      The moon has stayed his course since the day God created him, also the stars, obeying the statutes directed by God from the first day they were created. Can you imagine God’s direction to the Moon and stars, “moon you will have a path through the sky above the earth, stars you will occupy the firmament above the moon and be clearly visible in the cloudless night sky.”
      Then, the trees, grass, even the air we breathe obey the statues God gave them from the beginning. None of these creations have souls, none have hearts, none have intelligence, but they all observe God’s statutes, His instructions for their limited time on earth.
      Thought 2
      What if we were like the moon, stars, trees, grass, or the other creations which have no soul? We would be directed to keep God’s statutes without choosing to keep them. This is not the image of God, there would be no dominion over other creatures, or over the earth. We would not be capable of experiencing the joy and peace of learning the love of God
      Genesis 1:26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
      Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
      Thought 3 (October 2, 2019)
      Is the psalmist pleading God to force God’s statutes to become the man’s ways? No, he is speaking of his own failure in keeping God’s statutes and his desire to keep them, very much like Paul in Romans 7:14-25.
      God doesn’t work through force to turn men from their ways that they would desire His statutes or desire God Himself. Men must reject (repent) put aside his own ways and voluntarily seek God and His statutes.

Theologians, what you look for?

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So I have this issue where if an author, is calvinistic, non kjb, post trib, non creation. I just dismiss them anyone just disqualifies them and I'm wondering if I'm really hindering my reading and study, although at the same time I'm wondering if perhaps this is just a leading to spend full time invested in the word until I feel comfy dividing between writings of authors I don't agree with. How about you? How do you decide what's worth investing time into or not? Sorry about formatting OB and tapatalk don't like making paragraphs.. Sent from my Passport using Tapatalk

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At different times in my Christian walk I've used different methods. Early on I had no one to disciple me and limited resources of Christian material. For the most part, I didn't have a clue who the authors were of what I was reading or what stances they took beyond what was written in what I read.

After the Lord sent a friend to me who was a good man of God, and he introduced me to his Baptist pastor, and I began attending their services and the pastors men's Bible study, I learned about Baptists, IFBs and resources I hadn't know of before. At that time I spent much time in the Bible and what I was reading outside of the Bible was primarily from sound Baptist authors.

I won't read just anything today, but I do read a variety of authors sometimes. No author is perfect, but most are able to handle some subjects very well. If they are dealing with something that doesn't include what I consider wrong or wacky things, then sometimes some of their material can be worthwhile.

I know many non-Cals who read, study from and quote the "Calvinist" Baptist Spurgeon. Pilgrims Progress, the most popular book after the Bible, was written by "Calvinist" Bunyan and is still favored by many IFBs.

David Jeremiah is a Southern Baptist but I've found his material dealing with the pre-trib rapture aspect of the end times to be the best and most clearly presented I've yet encountered.

Myself, I would say it depends upon what stage or growth level you are at. If you don't believe you are grounded in the Word enough, or just not grounded enough in certain areas, it may be most beneficial to ground yourself in these areas, mostly through personal Bible reading and study. Authors you know you can trust in the areas you seek better grounding in can be read to help expound upon these areas.

If and when you believe you are grounded enough to detect any serious wrong teaching if you encounter such, then you could widen your reading pool. This still requires some discernment, as well as a willingness to stop reading a book if it turns out to be unworthy of reading.

One year during the libraries summer reading program I read their collection of Joel Osteen books. I didn't read them expecting to gain helpful insights in to the Word or walking with Christ (and I didn't find any!) but rather so I could know first hand what he's putting forth so I could speak with understanding to the growing number of folks who were getting caught up in him at the time. While I wouldn't call his first book a rock solid Christian work, I did notice it was the book with the most actual Christian stuff in it (still weak tho). Each successive book of his was more and more watered down, motivational speaker type stuff. I was able to use what I learned from reading his books to have serious conversations with some people and point out where he was in error, what Scripture actually says, etc.

Aside from that, the vast majority of my reading is for the purpose of drawing closer to the Lord, going more in-depth into a subject, refresh and area I've not read much on in some time, and that sort of thing. For this reading I narrow my focus, but still keep my options wide enough not to miss something helpful from outside what might be an IFB source. I've read some helpful stuff by Ryle, some Puritans and others. I've also come across some bad stuff which once it became clear the book was filled with bones I stopped reading.

For instance, if I was looking into the subject of pre-trib rapture end times I would, as mentioned above, be willing to read something from David Jeremiah. However, if I found something on the subject written by Oral Roberts (I have no idea whether he did or didn't ever write on the subject) I know enough of him to know I wouldn't even look at the book.

It mostly comes down to our level of maturity and ability to use discernment when choosing books to read.

One thing to be careful of is to never let reading the works of men keep you from also spending time in the Word.

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Jordan, my short answer is this: Why read what some man says about the Scripture when you can read the Scripture directly from the original author?

"A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump."

It should be for the same reason we listen to a preacher, the same reason the Ethiopian listened to Phillip, the same reason it's good to have someone to disciple new and less spiritually mature Christians.

That said, the Scripture has to be the foundation and the final authority. Scripture can't be set aside in order to concentrate upon the writings of men, no matter how good and sound they may be. Nothing can replace Scripture. Scripture is inspired, the writings of men are not.

One of the things I really liked and appreciated about the books by Pastor Markle are they are so saturated with Scripture. Also, the words Pastor Markle puts forth are primarily simply expounding upon the Word of God rather than offering opinions or theories.

Discernment is necessary and that requires time in the Word. Like the Bereans, whether we are listening to a preacher or reading a book, we need to check what's presented with the Word to see if they agree or not. If they are in agreement, great! If not, then the Word of God is correct and the preacher or author is in error, at least on that point.

Scripture first, Scripture always. Other reading should only serve as a supplement. Scripture is the full meal.

 

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Wow!  I was mentioned in a thread, and did not even know it.  I do not read the majority of threads, but only those that "catch my eye."  The subject matter of this one did "catch my eye;" and what do I find . . .

Brother John, I wish to thank you for those kind and encouraging remarks concerning me.  It is ever my desire to present "that which is good to the use of edifying" in order that it may minister God's grace unto the readers.

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Wow!  I was mentioned in a thread, and did not even know it.  I do not read the majority of threads, but only those that "catch my eye."  The subject matter of this one did "catch my eye;" and what do I find . . .

Brother John, I wish to thank you for those kind and encouraging remarks concerning me.  It is ever my desire to present "that which is good to the use of edifying" in order that it may minister God's grace unto the readers.

Brother is there a place to find your. Book(s) I agree with brother John though I haven't read your books I have followed the topics that you have posted and have been blessed by each one.

God bless

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It should be for the same reason we listen to a preacher, the same reason the Ethiopian listened to Phillip, the same reason it's good to have someone to disciple new and less spiritually mature Christians.

That said, the Scripture has to be the foundation and the final authority. Scripture can't be set aside in order to concentrate upon the writings of men, no matter how good and sound they may be. Nothing can replace Scripture. Scripture is inspired, the writings of men are not.

One of the things I really liked and appreciated about the books by Pastor Markle are they are so saturated with Scripture. Also, the words Pastor Markle puts forth are primarily simply expounding upon the Word of God rather than offering opinions or theories.

Discernment is necessary and that requires time in the Word. Like the Bereans, whether we are listening to a preacher or reading a book, we need to check what's presented with the Word to see if they agree or not. If they are in agreement, great! If not, then the Word of God is correct and the preacher or author is in error, at least on that point.

Scripture first, Scripture always. Other reading should only serve as a supplement. Scripture is the full meal.

 

This all sounds intellectual enough but with one problem. It is absolutely, positively unScriptural. Nothing like this can be found anywhere in Scripture. Preaching absolutely is how God's Word is to be delivered to the lost and God's people. Writing books about God's Word is not in any way, shape or form. I suspect the common sense reason being what Jim mentioned: these merchandising books about God always are off the mark in some way and contradict God's meaning is some form or another REGARDLESS of who wrote them.

These are not sanctioned of God period, never have been.

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In seminary, I've had to read a lot of books by those I disagree with, most of the time for the express purpose of critiquing the book. I've actually found many of them helpful for the opposite purpose for which they are intended. At the academic level, the authors usually make quite good arguments with a lot of data, yet come to a conclusion that I disagree with. Rather than be persuaded to error, I find that it forces me to go back to the Bible and either confirm what I knew to be true or plug holes in defense of what I know/believe. On a very rare occasion I've had to adjust my stance on something. In the end, having a more well-rounded knowledge of an issue gives me a better understanding of the Scriptural truth as well as helps me in evangelism and apologetics with people of different faiths or denominations. A great example was a book on hermeneutics I had to read that was written by a Charismatic theologian. It gave me a much better understanding of how they arrive at their conclusions and I can demolish just about any argument they come up with.

To answer your question directly, read everything (regardless of the author) critically and check anything that does not sound immediately correct based on your current Bible knowledge. You'll learn a great deal by studying in response to a challenge to your view. If, for example, you're reading a Calvinist author and he quotes a verse in support double-predestination, go study that verse and see how it should be interpreted correctly, then make a note in the margin. I did this in one of my systematic theology textbooks and it was a great help in solidifying a lot of things for me.

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This all sounds intellectual enough but with one problem. It is absolutely, positively unScriptural. Nothing like this can be found anywhere in Scripture. Preaching absolutely is how God's Word is to be delivered to the lost and God's people. Writing books about God's Word is not in any way, shape or form. I suspect the common sense reason being what Jim mentioned: these merchandising books about God always are off the mark in some way and contradict God's meaning is some form or another REGARDLESS of who wrote them.

These are not sanctioned of God period, never have been.

You seem to be mingling the idea of sensationalized "Christian" books with those written by sound pastors as in the same category. I don't even count books along the lines of "The Shack", "Four Blood Moons", "The Harbinger" and such like as being Christian. What I refer to as Christian books are typically written by pastors and amount to sermons in written form. In fact, many of these books come from their sermons.

I referenced our own Pastor Markle above so I'll stick with that example. His book on marriage and family is very thorough and excellent based upon the fact it's saturated with the Word (no need to look up verses or passages, they are in the book). The book is akin to a sermon series on the topic of marriage and family.

Books such as Pastor Markle's, are an excellent way to get needed, biblically sound "sermons" to a far wider audience. Also, in book form these written "sermons" can be referred to, studied and shared as often as a person likes, and for years.

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in his time Paul did exactly that.  he wrote letters about God's Word to exhort and educate believers, and now they are part of scripture.  so we do have a scriptural precident.  But we also need to heed the example of the Bereans, who searched the scriptures for themselves to verify what they were being taught was correct.

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in his time Paul did exactly that.  he wrote letters about God's Word to exhort and educate believers, and now they are part of scripture.  so we do have a scriptural precident.  But we also need to heed the example of the Bereans, who searched the scriptures for themselves to verify what they were being taught was correct.

Inspired Scripture is hardly a precedent for men writing un-inspired books for profit adding to or taking away from God's Word (even if just a jot or tittle).

You seem to be mingling the idea of sensationalized "Christian" books with those written by sound pastors as in the same category. I don't even count books along the lines of "The Shack", "Four Blood Moons", "The Harbinger" and such like as being Christian. What I refer to as Christian books are typically written by pastors and amount to sermons in written form. In fact, many of these books come from their sermons.

I referenced our own Pastor Markle above so I'll stick with that example. His book on marriage and family is very thorough and excellent based upon the fact it's saturated with the Word (no need to look up verses or passages, they are in the book). The book is akin to a sermon series on the topic of marriage and family.

Books such as Pastor Markle's, are an excellent way to get needed, biblically sound "sermons" to a far wider audience. Also, in book form these written "sermons" can be referred to, studied and shared as often as a person likes, and for years.

You make a good point here John but it is still not supported by Scripture in any way. The weight of Scripture as a whole is against it.

Unfortunately we have Pastors everywhere who give up on their communities because "it is too hard to win my area" "the people have no interest in the Lord"  to spend hours daily writing books supposedly to help other parts of the world while their local area goes to hell. If God called them and God placed them (as all claim) then it stands to reason He placed them to save their Jerusalem, not to give up and change their calling, purpose and reason into the ministry and certainly not to make merchandise out of God.

I am not pretending to be authoritative on this subject but as a whole the Scripture is not supportive and in some passages makes stern warnings against it.

Sadly, the small percentage of IFBs who actually want to grow in Grace are directed to everything out there EXCEPT the Bible and the Spirit for understanding. Where is the hands on discipleship and growth demonstrated to us in Acts? The falling away God warned us of has nothing to do with the world or human government; it has to do with us and we have fallen off a cliff.

This is where calvin worship or just as bad and always related to it: preterists, amils post mils and every other whacky twist of doctrine claiming the "resurrection is past already" came from besides the myriad of other Biblically insane authors have made their livings adding to and/or taking away from God's Word sending countless to hell or down the road to a useless, fleshly existence.

15, Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
16, But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.
17, And their word will eat as doth a canker: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus
18, Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some.

 

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Brother is there a place to find your. Book(s) I agree with brother John though I haven't read your books I have followed the topics that you have posted and have been blessed by each one.

God bless

Brother Smith,

I do apologize for taking so long in responding to your question.  The past number of days have been filled with family and ministry responsibilities, such that I have had very, very, very little time for Online Baptist.  Even now I only have just a few moments before this day is filled with such responsibilities.

First, I wish to thank you for your interest in my books and for your encouragement concerning my postings.

Concerning my books, they may be found at my website -- www.shepherdingtheflock.com.  Purchases from this sight will come directly from me and will require a shipping fee.  (Sorry to those outside of the mainland United States; I am not set up for such purchases.)  Also at my website, you may find my blog, wherein I post written articles and audio sermons as time permits.

My books may also be purchased at Amazon.com.  (Just do a search under the "book" heading for "Scott Markle.")  I believe that Amazon's prices are higher than mine; however, at Amazon my books are eligible for free shipping through Amazon Prime (which may make the cost cheaper than from me).  My books on Marriage, on Revival, and on the Tender Mercies of the Lord are also available from Amazon in Kindle format.

I pray that this information will be of help to you (and to others).

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Brother Smith,

I do apologize for taking so long in responding to your question.  The past number of days have been filled with family and ministry responsibilities, such that I have had very, very, very little time for Online Baptist.  Even now I only have just a few moments before this day is filled with such responsibilities.

First, I wish to thank you for your interest in my books and for your encouragement concerning my postings.

Concerning my books, they may be found at my website -- www.shepherdingtheflock.com.  Purchases from this sight will come directly from me and will require a shipping fee.  (Sorry to those outside of the mainland United States; I am not set up for such purchases.)  Also at my website, you may find my blog, wherein I post written articles and audio sermons as time permits.

My books may also be purchased at Amazon.com.  (Just do a search under the "book" heading for "Scott Markle.")  I believe that Amazon's prices are higher than mine; however, at Amazon my books are eligible for free shipping through Amazon Prime (which may make the cost cheaper than from me).  My books on Marriage, on Revival, and on the Tender Mercies of the Lord are also available from Amazon in Kindle format.

I pray that this information will be of help to you (and to others).

thank you pastor , I'm very selective in the books I read but I'm sure I will be blessed by yours. I kindly thank for your time to answer and for the information.

God bless

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Matthew 13:52 Then said he unto them, “Therefore every scribe which is instructed unto the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which bringeth forth out of his treasure things new and old.”

Wouldn't a scribe write books?

 

 

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This is where calvin worship or just as bad and always related to it: preterists, amils post mils and every other whacky twist of doctrine claiming the "resurrection is past already" came from besides the myriad of other Biblically insane authors have made their livings adding to and/or taking away from God's Word sending countless to hell...

You are correct, it is by the foolishness of preaching, yet you lack a tool to 'make the word clear' like Nehemiah and Ezra says.

Men are needed to explain to youngerlings.

Of which I did not learn what I beleve as a partial preterist.

I only read the word, and learned it, not as a youngerling, but as an adult believer led by the Spirit of God.

Edited by Genevanpreacher
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Wow!  I was mentioned in a thread, and did not even know it.  I do not read the majority of threads, but only those that "catch my eye."  The subject matter of this one did "catch my eye;" and what do I find . . .

Brother John, I wish to thank you for those kind and encouraging remarks concerning me.  It is ever my desire to present "that which is good to the use of edifying" in order that it may minister God's grace unto the readers.

I did not realize you were an author as well Pastor Markle.  I have enjoyed your podcasts so much that I just bought all 3 books and the scripture cards in your bookstore.  Can't wait to get them!  

Bro. Garry

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