Bulletin Edition April 2023

*Believers in the Lord Jesus are now looked upon as having died with Christ; laid in the grave with Christ; been raised with Christ; perfectly accepted in Him; their sins, their iniquities, their transgressions, and their enmity having been entirely paid for and put away by the cross. I close with this question. Is this enough to motivate you and I to live for his glory?

*What is preaching? It is the spiritual energy of a heart constrained by love of the Lord Jesus.

*Obedience is the safeguard against the snare of the enemy. We cannot reason on what we see; we must obey what we hear. Reason is no guide for the people of God. We must be absolutely and completely guided and governed by the word of God.

*Two times when you ought to pray for the preacher: when he is right and when he is wrong. That means all the time.  

*A man who knows his right place in the presence of God is able to elevate himself above all evil speaking. He is not troubled by it—he can afford to forgive it. He is not touchy, tenacious, or self occupied. He knows that no one can put him any lower than he deserves to be.

*The grace of God does not change our old nature. Grace gives us a new, spiritual nature; but the old nature is unchanged. Flesh is still flesh, undiluted evil, just as evil as it was before God saved us. Old Adam is still old Adam, even though Christ is in the heart and grace conquers Adam, and grace rules Adam; but grace does not change Adam. “The flesh lusteth against the Spirit.” This struggle between the flesh and the Spirit must continue until at last grace wins the victory, the flesh returns to the earth and we are received up into glory. We do not excuse the evil of our flesh, nor do we deny it. We confess it, acknowledge our sin and trust Christ alone.

Christian or Antichrist?

1 John 2:18-22; 4:1-3; 5:1; 2 John 1:7

What does it mean to deny “that Jesus is the Christ”? — To deny that Jesus is the Christ is to deny that Jesus of Nazareth actually accomplished all that the Old Testament Scriptures assert that the Christ of God would accomplish.

What is it to confess “that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh”? — It is to acknowledge and confess that everything written in the Old Testament regarding the person and work of the Messiah, the Christ, meet in and were fulfilled by Jesus of Nazareth. It is to confess that Jesus of Nazareth actually accomplished all that God asserted in the Old Testament Scriptures that the Christ, the woman’s Seed, would accomplish.

What is it to believe “that Jesus is the Christ”? — To believe that Jesus is the Christ is to trust the crucified man, Jesus of Nazareth, as your Lord (Luke 14:25-33) and Savior (1 Corinthians 1:30). It is the commitment of your life to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, the Lord of Glory, the Prince and King of Heaven and Earth!

            Is your religion Christian or antichrist? Are you Christian or antichrist? Read Daniel 9:24 and you will see.

Don Fortner


I John 4:1

The scriptures abound with warnings to God’s elect about false prophets. Satan would rather make you a religious moralist than make you a pimp or a prostitute, for it is far more difficult to persuade one who thinks he is saved that he needs a Savior than it is to persuade one who knows he is an abominable wretch. Therefore the Word of God gives plain and repeated warnings to us about false religion and false prophets. Here are four marks by which you can always identify a false prophet.

1. A FALSE PROPHET WILL ALWAYS DENY GOD’S ABSOLUTE SOVEREIGNTY IN SALVATION. He may allow that God is sovereign in creation. He may even allow that God is sovereign over the elements of the world in providence. But he will not acknowledge God’s sovereignty in salvation, though it is most plainly affirmed in the Word of God (Matt. 11:20-26; Rom. 9:8-26).

2. A FALSE PROPHET WILL ALWAYS DENY THE EFFICACY OF CHRIST’S BLOOD. He does not deny that Christ died for sinners; but he denies that the blood of Christ actually atoned for and put away the sins of those people for whom he died, and that his blood guarantees the salvation of all for whom it was shed. Yet, this too the Word of God teaches in unmistakable terms (Isa. 42:4; 53:8-11; Heb. 9:12, 26; 10:10-14).

3. A FALSE PROPHET WILL ALWAYS DENY THE SUFFICIENCY OF GOD’S GRACE ALONE TO SAVE SINNERS. He would never openly make such a denial. But he asserts that God deals with all men alike in grace, though some perish and some are saved. In other words, it is not God’s grace alone that determines salvation, but God’s grace and man’s will or man’s works. This also is in direct opposition to Holy Scripture (Rom. 9:16; Eph. 2:8-9; II Tim. 1:9).

4. A FALSE PROPHET WILL ALWAYS GIVE YOU SOMETHING TO DO TO MERIT GOD’S FAVOR. He will have you to understand that your works, to one-degree or another do merit something from God, either in justification, or in sanctification, or in your heavenly reward. Yet, the Word of God everywhere denounces man’s works as useless and abominable (Isa. 64:6; Rom. 11:6).

Don  Fortner

The Faithful Servant and the Evil One

Matthew 24:45-51

In that last great day, when Christ comes again, every faithful servant of God shall be publicly recognized, honored, and rewarded by Christ; and every false prophet shall be publicly exposed and damned.

A Faithful Pastor

First, our Lord gives us a brief description of his faithful servants (vv. 45-47). While  this  text may  be  properly  applied  to  all God’s  saints in  their  various capacities in this world, for all true believers are the servants of God, it speaks specifically of pastors and tells us four things about that man who is called and gifted of God to preach the gospel to his people.

1.     His Character  “Faithful.” — God’s servants are, above all else, faithful men. Some are highly gifted, some less. Some are very educated, some not very educated. Some are very sociable, some not so sociable. But they are all faithful to God, his gospel, and his people.

2.     His Position — “Ruler over his household.” — God’s servants are not lords over God’s heritage. They have no desire for that responsibility. But they do rule the house of God, just as a faithful husband and father rules his house (1 Timothy 3:5; Acts 20:28; Hebrews 13:7, 17). As there can only be one husband in a family, there can only be one pastor (overseer and spiritual ruler) in a local church.

3.     His Work — “To give them meat in due season.” — Every gospel preacher feeds the church of God with the sweet meat of free grace, with knowledge and understanding, as he is himself taught of God (Jeremiah 3:15).

4.     His Reward (vv. 46-47). There are rewards for faithful service, both in this world and in the world to come. These are not rewards of debt, but of grace; not according to the rules of law, but of love. Old John Trapp said, “Christ is a liberal pay-master, and his retributions are more than bountiful.”

While there is no indication anywhere in Scripture that there are degrees of reward among the saints in heaven, we are encouraged to faithfulness by the promise of it being rewarded by our God. As faithfulness honors God, God honors faithfulness. In this world, faithfulness in one form of service is rewarded by greater opportunities of service. Faithfulness in small things is rewarded by being given greater things (Luke 19:17). In the world to come, we shall inherit all the bounty of life everlasting and see the results of our faithfulness around the throne of our God!

The Unfaithful Servant

The unfaithful servant is also described by four things (vv. 48-51).

1.     His Presumption — “My lord delayeth his coming.” — Being an unbeliever, he soon grows weary of waiting upon the Lord.

2.     His Abuse (v. 49). His abuses are two: 1st, He beats his fellow servants. He puts them under the law. Rather than comforting them (Isaiah 40:1-2), he threatens and beats them. 2nd, He lives for pleasure, to the gratification of his lusts, rather than for the glory of God and the good of men’s souls. False prophets, rather than serving Christ and his people, serve themselves.

3.     His Surprise (v. 50). When the Master comes, he will take the self-serving prophet of deceit by surprise.

4.     His Ruin (v. 51). Pretending to be the servant of God while serving Satan and himself, he shall justly have his portion with hypocrites in hell.

Don Fortner

Man-centered, man-exalting, man-pleasing,
  God-debasing, God-hating religion

(the following is by Don Fortner)

We are living in perilous times.
We are living in the midst of the greatest
religious apostasy ever known. It appears
that the time has come when God has sent
men a strong delusion, that they should
believe a lie, because they received not
the love of the truth.

This modern-day, man-centred, man-exalting,
man-pleasing, God-debasing, God-hating religion,
which seems to engulf the entire world and all
religious sects, is the greatest religious deception
this world has ever known.

Any religion that is man-centred; any religion
that has for its foundation man’s will, man’s works,
or man’s rights; any religion that promotes the
honor and pride of man; any religion that pampers
and cultivates self-righteousness, self-esteem,
and self-worth is of antichrist.

As God can send a nation or people no greater blessing, than to give them faithful, sincere and holy ministers—so the greatest curse that God can possibly send upon a people in this world is to give them over to blind, unregenerate, carnal, lukewarm and unskilled guides.

George Whitfield

Among the preachers of the day

(J. C. Philpot, “Memoirs & Letters” 1862)

“My speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration
 of the Spirit and of power.” 1 Corinthians 2:4

Among the preachers of the day, how few preach
the truth from any sweet experience of its power!

There is no lack of ministers, who hold the truth,
at least in the letter. But most hold it merely in
their heads. How few are enabled to preach it
feelingly and experimentally, under the savour
and blessed anointing of the Holy Spirit.

What strongholds of Satan we have to pull down!

What arrows of conviction to launch!

What balm of consolation to administer!

What strong hearts to break!

What broken hearts to bind up!

Oh, may the Lord raise up men who . . .
  know the truth,
  love the truth,
  preach the truth,
  and live the truth!
The Devil in Sheep’s Clothing?

“If the devil comes to my door with his horns visible,
I will never let him in; but if he comes with his hat on
as a respectable gentleman, he is at once admitted.
The metaphor may be very strange, but it is quite true–
many a man has taken in an evil thing, because it has been
varnished and glossed over, and not apparently an evil; and he
has thought in his heart, there is not much harm in it; so he has
let in the little thing, and it has been like the breaking forth
of water- the first drop has brought after it a torrent.
The beginning has been but the beginning of a fearful end.”

“I am the door; by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”–John 10:9


There is a finding pasture in PROVIDENCE. A sweet and healthy pasture indeed this is–to watch the Lord’s providential dealings with us spread through a long series of years. It is seeing the Lord’s providential hand which makes the commonest temporal mercies sweet. Every nibble of grass or lock of hay which we can believe to be specially provided for us by the hand of that good Shepherd becomes thereby doubly sweet.

But O what pastures in GRACE has God provided for his hungry sheep! Look at the promises and declarations, the sacred truths and heavenly consolations scattered up and down the Scriptures of truth.

But of all spiritual pasture thus provided for the flock, the chief is the flesh and blood of the Lord Jesus. This is his own divine declaration–“For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed” (John 6:55). And every communication of grace to the soul out of the fullness of Christ, every promise applied with a divine power to the heart, every truth which drops with heavenly savor, every season of encouragement; in a word, every part of God’s word which the soul can eat and feed upon is spiritual pasture. Thus the prophet found it of old–“Your words were found, and I did eat them; and your word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; for I am called by your name, O Lord God of hosts” (Jeremiah 15:16).

A lion! a dragon! a serpent!

(Henry Law, “Gleanings from the Book of Life”)

“I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish,
 neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand.” John 10:28
The good Shepherd protects His sheep.

Many and mighty are their foes.

In themselves they are weak and tremulous as a broken reed.

The wild boar out of the forest marks them as his prey.

The roaring lion watches to devour.

Savage dogs would mangle.

The wind, the rain, the tempest, threaten to destroy.

The Shepherd knows these perils, and protects from all.

Satan is the arch enemy of the flock.
For strength—he is a lion,
for fierceness—he is a dragon,
for twisting deviousness—he is a serpent.

His might almost reaches almightiness.

His many vassals, as legion, are a universal swarm.

His vigilance never slumbers.

His skill is barbed by world long experience.

His wrath is vehement, because his time is short. He
wars with desperation because a hopeless doom is near.

How is it that the sheep are not all
driven to Satan’s prison cell?

There must be a Shepherd almighty to protect.

He who delivered David “from the paw of the lion, and
from the paw of the bear” is the same rescuing Lord.

Paul seemed to be in the jaws of ruin, but he testifies,
“The Lord stood at my side and gave me strength,
 and I was delivered from the lion’s mouth.”

In direst extremity let the believer cry, “Rescue me
from the mouth of the lion; save me from the horns
of the wild oxen!”

A protecting arm will speedily be outstretched.

Thus His sheep never perish, and no one can
snatch them out of His hands.

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