Inspirational Message to the 2016 Graduates of the Christian Academy of Bacolod

Let me begin by saying how thankful I am for the opportunity to be your speaker this afternoon. Just like what you are now, I was once an ACE (Accelerated Christian Education) student. Continue reading “Inspirational Message to the 2016 Graduates of the Christian Academy of Bacolod”

Good to Great?

Jim Collins’ Good to Great is a great and helpful book and I’ve learned a lot from it, but the thought occurred to me that striving to be great might not be a great idea after all. Good might be the enemy of great, but great, if one’s not careful, might easily become the enemy of joy. I’ve thought about eliminating from my life (“posteriorizing”) activities which bring me joy, but which I know I’ll never become great at, even though I can become very good at them. And I notice that even those things which I think I can become great at don’t give me much joy when I do them for the sake of becoming great at them. Maybe for some people – and I might be one of them – being “good enough” is great as long as it leads to joy!

To wrap things up here’s a Bible verse:

“Do you seek great things for yourself? Seek them not!” (Jer. 45:5)

Taking God at His Word

I bought a copy of Kevin DeYoung’s Taking God at His Word yesterday. I’m in chapter 3 now. This book is simple, clear and helpful.

From chapter 1, here are three questions we should ask ourselves about God’s Word:

1. What Should I Believe about the Word of God?

First, God’s word says what is true.

Second, God’s word demands what is right.

Third, God’s word provides what is good.

2. What Should I Feel about the Word of God?

First, I should delight in it.

Second, I should desire it.

Third, I should depend on it.

3. What Should I Do with the Word of God?

  • Sing the word
  • Speak the word
  • Study the word
  • Store up the word
  • Obey the word
  • Praise God for the word
  • Pray that God would act according to his word

 

In The Son

“It is in the Son that the Father can predestine and choose us to be his children, fellow children with the one, eternal Child, who, from the beginning of the world, intervenes as sponsor for his alienated creatures. It is in the him that the Father justifies us, viewing and valuing us in the context of his Son’s righteousness which pays all our debts; he ascribes the Son’s righteousness to us; he gives it to us as our very own. Finally, it is in the Son that the Father glorifies us, by permitting us to participate in the Son’s resurrection and finally, by grace, setting us at his right hand, the Son’s rightful place.”

– Hans Urs Von Balthasar

True Faith Brings Commitment

We can prove our faith by our commitment to it, and in no other way.

To many Christians Christ is little more than an idea, or at best an ideal. He is not a fact. Millions of professed believers talk as if He were real and act as if He were not. And always our actual position is to be discovered by the way we act, not by the way we talk.

We can prove our faith by our commitment to it, and in no other way.

 

– from A Treasury of A.W. Tozer, p. 121

Ebenezer Christian Reformed Church 23rd Anniversary Sermon

 

PARTICULAR REDEMPTION

(Ebenezer Christian Reformed Church, Bacolod City. 27 July 2014)

Text: Isaiah 53:4-6, 10-12

Introduction

I find it quite a challenge to preach on today’s topic, as it is a very controversial doctrine. The doctrine of particular redemption states that Christ died only for God’s elect. The majority of Christians believe otherwise. They believe that Christ died for all, and they consider the doctrine of particular redemption heretical, more or less, because (1) it seems to limit God’s love, (2) it seems to contradict plain statements of Scripture, and (3) it seems to make evangelism problematic.

On the contrary, I will show that it is the view that Christ died for all that is problematic:

(1) If Christ died for all, how do you avoid universal salvation? If Christ actually paid for all the sins of all people, does it not logically follow that everyone will ultimately be saved?

(2) Related to this is the issue of double jeopardy. If Christ already paid for the sins of all people, would it not be double payment to allow some of these people to again pay the penalty for their sins by suffering in hell? Does it harmonize with God’s justice to demand payment twice for the same offense?

(3) Also, when Jesus Christ died on the cross, did he also pay for the sins of those who were already in hell at that time? If he did, what was the point?

(4) Finally, if Christ died for all, did he pay for all the sins of all people? Why then are not all saved? If the answer is, “Because some do not believe,” the next question is, “Is unbelief a sin or not?” If it is, did Christ also die for this sin? If he did, why should this sin prevent anyone from being saved? Continue reading “Ebenezer Christian Reformed Church 23rd Anniversary Sermon”

You know, it’s …

You know, it’s possible that God’s plan for us is littleness. His plan for us may be personal failure. It’s possible that when another door closes, it’s not because he plans to open a window but because he plans to have the building fall down on you. The question we must ask ourselves is this: Will Christ be enough?

Jared Wilson, You’re Going to Die (and So Might Your Dreams”