Bulletin Edition July 2022

What Does God Require Of Man?          

John 6:29

     The Jewish Talmud says, “The whole law was given to Moses in six hundred thirteen precepts.” It was summarized and given to the children of Israel in ten commandments (Ex. 20:1-17). Those ten commandments are, like all the other precepts of the law, holy, just, and good. They reveal something of God’s character and our sin. They identify sin for us, condemn sin in us, and show us our need of a Savior, a Mediator, a Substitute and Representative, One who can stand between God and man to meet the demands of a holy God and the needs of fallen men. That Mediator is Jesus Christ, the Son of God (I Tim. 2:5-6).

     Isaiah, writing by Divine inspiration, reduced all the commandments to six (Isa. 33:15-16). The prophet Micah reduced them to just three (Mic. 6:8). The incarnate Son of God reduced them all to just two (Matt. 11:37-40). All the commandments of God, when reduced to their essence, require only two things from us: that we love God and love one another perfectly. Yet, these two great commandments condemn us all. Not one of us loves God or his neighbour perfectly. But hope is not gone.

     The gospel of Christ declares that it is yet possible for fallen man to fulfill all the law of God perfectly. There is one commandment to which God promises eternal life. If you will obey that one commandment, if you will do this one thing you will live forever. Obey this one commandment and you fulfill all the law of God. Are you interested?

     “This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent” (John 6:29). “This is his commandment, that we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ” (I John 3:23). By believing on the Lord Jesus Christ sinners fulfill the whole law of God, offering God perfect obedience and complete satisfaction in the person of Christ (Rom. 3:31; 8:4). There is no fulfilment of the law but by faith in Christ.

     If you now obey God’s commandment, if you now believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, your faith in him is the gift of God’s grace, the result of his grace operating on you and in you (Eph.2:8; 1:19; Col. 1:12).

Don Fortner

 “Therefore, it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed” (Romans 4:16).  The only way that salvation can be sure is if it is all by grace.   If salvation is dependent on some contribution from man, the only thing that is sure is that none will be saved.                                   ~Todd Nibert

 Payment God cannot twice demand,

First at my bleeding Surety’s hand,

And then again at mine!

~Augustus Toplady

 Thy people, blessed Jesus, are everlastingly pursuing what they have proved a thousand times to be vain and unsatisfying; yet they pursue it again, and do not learn “to know the judgment of the Lord.” Blessed Lord! Undertake for me: pity, compassionate, direct, guide, keep me! Oh! For grace to learn, and rightly to value the things of salvation! And, convinced that Christ is all and in all, may I never seek from the creature what only can be found in the Creator!                                                                

 ~Robert Hawker

The gospel of grace and salvation is above all doctrines the most dangerous, if it be received in word only by graceless men—if it be not attended with a sensible need of a Saviour, and bring them to him. For such men as have only the notion of it, are of all men most miserable—for by reason of their knowing more than heathens, this only shall be their final portion, that they shall have greater stripes.

John Bunyan

Faith is not believing that God will do what I want Him to do, or what I think I need Him to do. Faith is believing that God will do what He said he would do. Faith in Christ is an abandonment of our own thoughts and ways, and a complete, unreserved trusting of Him as our Righteousness, Sin-offering and Sovereign.                                                                             ~Chris Cunningham

In a very short time for some of us, not very long for any of us, and it could be today for all of us! …we are going to be called to stand before God, our sovereign Creator and holy Judge. In that solemn hour those things which most men hold closest to their hearts will be of no importance whatsoever. Why, in that hour a thousand dollar bill will be as a mere piece of scrap paper. In that solemn hour of judgment it will not matter whether one is black or white, educated or uneducated, rich or poor, president or prisoner, king or slave. Whether one is accepted or rejected of God and spends eternity in heaven or hell, that will be the only thing that matters; and that hinges upon one thing, and one thing only….What one thinks of God’s Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. What do YOU think of the Lord Jesus Christ? What is HE to YOU?

        ~Maurice Montgomery

The soul’s natural element


Before the soul can know anything about salvation,
it must learn deeply and experimentally the nature
of sin, and of itself, as stained and polluted by sin.

It is proud, and needs to be humbled.

It is careless, and needs to be awakened.

It is alive, and needs to be killed.

It is full, and requires to be emptied.

It is whole, and needs to be wounded.

It is clothed, and requires to be stripped.

The soul is, by nature . . .
  buried deep in worldliness and carnality;
  utterly blind and ignorant;
  filled with . . .
      and enmity;
  hateful to all that is heavenly and spiritual.

Sin, in all its various forms, is
the soul’s natural element.

Some of the features of the unregenerate
nature of man are . . .
  worldly pleasure,
  desire of the praise of men,
  an insatiable thirst after self-advancement,
  a complete abandonment to all that can please
    and gratify every new desire of the heart,
  an utter contempt and abhorrence of everything that
    restrains or defeats its mad pursuit of what it loves.

moral restraints,
or the force of habit,
may restrain the outbreaking of inward corruption,
and dam back the mighty stream of indwelling sin,
so that it shall not burst all its bounds, and desolate
the land. But no moral check can alter human nature.

A chained tiger is a tiger still.

“The Ethiopian cannot change his
 skin, nor the leopard his spots.”

To make man the direct contrary of what
he originally is; to make him . . .
 love God instead of hating Him;
  fear God, instead of mocking Him;
  obey God, instead of rebelling against Him;
to do this mighty work, and to effect this wonderful
change, requires the implantation of a new nature
by the immediate hand of God Himself.

Natural light,
natural love,
natural faith,
natural obedience,
in a word, all natural religion,
is here useless and ineffectual.

It is I


“Be of good cheer: It is I; Be not afraid.” Mark 6:50

It is I who formed you in the womb, and brought you
forth into your present existence. It is I, the Lord your
God, who has fed you, and clothed you from that hour
up to the present moment. It is I, the Lord your God,
who has preserved you on every side. When you were
upon a sick bed, it was I, the Lord your God, who
visited your soul, raised up your body, and gave you
that measure of health which you do now enjoy. It is
, the Lord your God, who placed you in the situation
of life which you do now occupy.

It is I, the Lord your God . . .
  who deals out to you every trial,
  who allots you every affliction,
  who brings upon you every cross,
who works in you everything according
to My own good pleasure.

When we can thus believe that the Lord our God is
about our bed and our path, and spying out all our
ways; when we can look up to Him, and feel that
He is the Lord our God, there is no feeling . . .
  more sweet,
  more blessed,
  more heavenly!

“Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” Mark 6:50

Have I then no work to work in this great matter of my pardon? None! What work can you work? What work of yours can buy Divine forgiveness—or make you fit for the Divine favour? What work has God bidden you work in order to obtain salvation? None. His Word is very plain and easy to be understood, “To him who works not—but believes in Him that justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness” (Romans 4:5). There is but one work by which a man can be saved. That work is not yours—but the work of the Son of God. That work is finished.

Horatius Bonar

Unto you who believe — He is precious!

(“Every Day!” Author unknown, 1872)

Unto you who believe — He is precious!” 1 Peter 2:7

It is to unbelievers only, that Christ is “as a root out of a dry ground” — having no form nor loveliness.

To those who know Him, and put their trust in Him — He is the chief among ten thousand, and altogether lovely! To those who believe, He is precious . . .
  in all the offices He sustains,
  in all the relations He bears,
  as their atoning Sacrifice,
  as the Lord their righteousness,
  as the source of their spiritual life,
  as their Teacher,
  as their Example,
  and as their Guide.

O my soul, is Jesus precious to you?

Do you realise something of His worth?

Is He your Refuge, your Hiding-place?

Are you sheltered in Him?

Is He your Shepherd, your Guardian, your Friend?

Do you feel that, whatever you are called to part with — you cannot part with Christ?

Do you feel that that He is your Savior, your Life, your All?

Oh, then cleave to Him, serve Him earnestly, and live to His glory!

And know to your comfort, that as unworthy and sinful as you are — you are precious to Him. He bought you with His precious blood, He claims you as His own, and He will treasure you among His jewels when He comes to gather them up!

“Yes, Christ is precious to my soul,
 My transport and my trust;
 Jewels to Him are gaudy toys,
 And gold is sordid dust!”

Why are we so apt to be captivated with the gewgaws of the world?

(Letters of John Newton)

The holiness of a saved sinner consists chiefly of low thoughts of self — and high thoughts of the Savior. These will always be in proportion.

The lower we appear to ourselves — the more highly we shall esteem Him.
The more we are enthralled with His glory — the more we shall sink in our own eyes.

Could you find the man who has most of these properties — you would find the most holy man upon earth. And as we advance in these — we shall, in the same degree, attain to everything else that properly belongs to holiness.

Why are we liable to anger, pride, selfishness, and other evil tempers?
Because we think too highly of ourselves, and suppose that we are not treated as we deserve to be.

Why are we so apt to be captivated with the gewgaws of the world?

Because we are so faintly impressed with a real sense of the excellence of Jesus.

We say indeed that His loving-kindness is better than life, but if we really and fully thought so — then hard things would be easy, and bitter things would be sweet, and there would be no room for impatience or discontent in our hearts.

But alas! all within us, and all around us — is defective and polluted!

“Hold me up — and I shall be safe!” Psalm 119:117

Our Pilot! 

(Charles Spurgeon, “Multitudinous Thoughts and Sacred Comforts”)

Remember that your way is ordered by a higher power than your will and choice.

The eternal destiny of God has fixed your every footstep. Believe that wisdom, not blind fate, but God’s wisdom, has ordained the bounds of your life, and fixed your position and your condition so definitely that no fretfulness of yours can change it for the better.

In the decree of God, all your history is fixed—so as to secure His glory and your soul’s profit.

Your present sorrow, is the bitter bud of greater joy.
Your transient loss, secures your ultimate and never ceasing gain.

How I rejoice to believe that the Lord shall choose my inheritance for me!

All things are fixed by my Father’s hand—by no arbitrary and stern decree, but by His wise counsel and tender wisdom. He who loved us from before the foundations of the world, has immutably determined all the steps of our pilgrimage!

Why then, should you worry yourself?

There is a hand upon the helm which shall steer your vessel safely enough between the rocks, and by the quicksands, and away from the shoals and the headlands, through the mist, and through the darkness—safely to the desired haven!

Our Pilot
 never sleeps, and His hand never relaxes its grasp.

It is a blessed thing, after you have been muddling and meddling as you ought not to do with the affairs of providence, to leave them alone and cast your burden upon the Lord.

I charge you, therefore, children of God—in times of dilemma, toroll your burdens upon God, and He will sustain you, and make you to rejoice in beholding His wisdom and His love.

“My times are in Your hands!” Psalm 31:15

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