Archive for May 29, 2013

Bringing the Paralytic to Jesus   1 comment


Above:  Christ Heals a Man Paralyzed by the Gout (1780), by Bernhard Rode (1725-1797)


Mark 2, 1-12

1.  Jesus’ presence attracted a throng.  He is our best drawing card.

2.  The means of getting the paralytic to Jesus–four men brought him.

(1)  Had a mind to their afflicted friend.  “Here is the great Healer.”

(2)  Cooperated one with with the other, did what one alone could not have done.

(3)  Knew no unsurmountable difficulties–“uncovered the roof” and let him down at Jesus’ feet.

(4)  The four and the paralytic had faith in Jesus.  They showed it by their works; he looked up to Jesus out of an anxious heart.

3.  Results.

Jesus forgave his sin–an inward work–and healed his body–an outward work as proof of it.

Just like Him to forgive.  All Hell can’t keep Him out of the heart of one at His feet.  Would we could get all our unsaved ones at His feet today.  Is it not worth our best effort?

Then men will again be amazed and glorify God.


Posted May 29, 2013 by neatnik2009 in George Washington Barrett 1905-1913 A-F, Mark

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Good Will Toward Men   1 comment


Above:  Adoration of the Shepherds (1622), by Gerard van Honthorst (1590-1656)


Luke 2, 14

1.  The Book reveals to us so faithfully the dangers of our condition.

2.  It also reveals to us so clearly the blessedness to which we are invited.

3.  We must accept offered mercy if it avails.

4.  Unbelief is our plea for not accepting the terms of peace.

Shall perishing islanders refuse through unbelief transportation to a more blessed abode?

God will not accept this plea.

5.  The object of this good will–men of every condition in life.  It is for all if only they will receive.

Have you accepted it?


The Good Fight of Faith   2 comments


Above:  A Longsword

Image Source = Rama




I know that my great-grandfather would have disapproved of the milkshake with alcohol I sampled recently.  I passed on it after several sips because of the taste, not any moral objection.  I have consumed alcohol without ever becoming intoxicated.  Most of what I have sampled simply tastes too bad for me to want more.  So I prefer simple tea instead.




Eph. 6, 10-20 and 1 Tim. 6, 12

This is Paul’s favorite figure.  The Christian life is a warfare–not against flesh and blood but against “spiritual hosts of wickedness”–Eph. 6, 12.  To win this fight one must be in desperate earnestness.

1.  Fight a defensive warfare.  Sin assails us personally; we must repel its assaults.  To yield is death.  There is no hope for one who fails here.

2.  Fight an aggressive warfare.

(a)  Take the strongholds of sin for our captain.  Public evils that harm souls must be drive from our land.  e.g, the saloons and lawlessness

(b)  Sin in the hearts of others must arouse our hearts.  We must do all we can to bring them to Jesus that he may cast out Satan.  Somebody ought to care that others are unsaved.

3.  We must have spiritual weapons.

(a)  Take the sword of the Spirit, God’s word.  Without it we have no weapon with which to fight.

(b)  Prayer is indispensable.  In so doing we receive strength for the conflict.  The great battles are won through prayer.

4.  The soldier has a sure reward, even eternal life:  worth the greatest cost.  Be intelligent, brave & loyal soldiers.


The Good Soldier and His Reward   4 comments


Above:  A Celtic Cross in Church Ruins, Estonia



St. Paul the Apostle certainly did not write 2 Timothy.

And my great-grandfather had a higher opinion of Martin Luther than I do.  Of course, I have a higher (although mixed) opinion of Roman Catholicism than my great-grandfather did–his was subterranean.




2 Tim. 4, 7-10

1.  Paul had his own battles to fight and obstacles to overcome.  They had to be fought by himself.

(1)  Internal struggles.  Breaking away from his life-long training.

(2)  Preaching the new gospel of salvation by faith and of resurrection, and defending it dogmatically and in “perils” constantly (2 Cor. 11, 22-33) besides the cares of all the churches.   He was put on his metal–soldier spirit was in great demand.

Such is our case.  We, too, have our battles to fight as good soldiers–as did Athanasius, [Martin] Luther, [John] Wesley, etc.

2.  We have help if we will first receive it.  “Looking unto Jesus” (Heb. 12, 2).  “There I take my stand; I can do no otherwise.  God help me.  Amen.”–Luther.  “God is…our strength.” (Psalm 46, 1)

3.  It is not in vain.  There is a present reward.  No labor of love is lost.  “Tis better to have loved and lost than not to have loved at all.”

There is an eternal reward.  “I have fought the good fight…there is…a crown of righteousness laid up for me.”  This reward is all any heart could wish!

4.  Will we “fight the good fight of faith”?  Will we be true?  Cross-bearers shall become crown wearers.


The Sufficiency of the Bible   9 comments


Above:  A Family Bible

Image Source = David Ball




I, as an Episcopalian, follow not Sola Scriptura, but the Three-Legged Stool:  Scripture, Tradition, and Reason, with Scripture being the most important of the three factors.  My great-grandfather spent most of his life in the Methodist Episcopal Church, South (1845-1939), and the end of it in the merged Methodist Church (1939-1968), a predecessor of the current United Methodist Church (1968-).  Methodism has traditionally embraced four standards–the Three-Legged Stool plus experience, with Scripture carrying primacy.  Thus my great-grandfather’s final comment in this sermon outline surprised me.



2 Tim. 3, 16-17

1.  The one great object of the Scriptures is such a revelation of God & His will as that man may be saved from sin and get home to heaven. Evidently the Bible is no textbook on every phase of knowledge, as this is manifestly impossible.  They testify of Christ.  Jno. 5, 39; 15, 26; Luke 24, 25-27.

2.  The Bible is an inspired book:  such it claims to be.  Gal. 2, 2; Eph. 3, 3; 2 Cor. 12, 1 & 7, 2 Peter 1, 21.  We realize this because it inspires us.  Reading it in faith we feel the Spirit’s inspiration.  Great blessings attend its distribution.  It is not to be compared to any other book.

3.  Explicit instruction is given concerning all things needful to man’s salvation.  Man learns of God–His character and will and of His love and mercy.

[Man] also learns of his own sinfulness and its consequences.  Of salvation therefrom and how to obtain it; and of heaven, to which he may come at last.

He may have the Spirit to help understand it.  (Eph. 1, 17-18)  Man needs not more truth revealed but a deeper understanding of the truth already revealed.

4.  Thereby “the man of God is complete” in himself, his own character, and “completely furnished unto every good work.”  It is the only rule and the sufficient rule both for our faith and practice.  Revelation 22, 18-19


Prayer   1 comment


Above:  Trinity Episcopal Church, Columbus, Georgia, May 19, 2013

Image Source = Bill Monk, Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta



1 Tim. 2, 1

1.  Paul recognizes the importance of prayer.  It cannot be overestimated.  It is the Christian’s vital breath, his native air.

2.  As a gracious privilege we ought to esteem it highly.  Poor, sinful creatures are permitted to go to out Father and make known our request.

3.  It ought to be a constant service.  “Men ought always to pray.”  There is great need for it.  Men are perishing and we ought to importune a throne of grace.  “Prayer moves the arm that moves the world.”

4.  There are many ways of praying that are a great blessing.  Private, public & family prayers are especially necessary and helpful.  Certainly the Christian knows the blessings thus obtained.

5.  Who may pray?  Any soul that sincerely desires God’s mercy.

The sinner is encouraged to pray if only he will forsake his sin.  Are you troubled by sin or anything else?  Pray.  Have you friends unsaved?  Pray for them and ask them to seek Him.


The Christian’s Confidence in Death   1 comment


Above:  A Cemetery, Between 1904 and 1920

Photograph Created by the Detroit Publishing Co.

Image Source = Library of Congress


Reproduction Number = LC-D4-25 X



It is certain that St. Paul the Apostle did not write 2 Timothy.




2 Tim. 4, 8 & 18 (Revised Version of 1881)

1.  Paul, at the end of his pilgrimage, looks with confidence to the future.  He had lived well and now trusts God for the beyond.  He stands not aghast; is confident.

2.  He will live beyond the grave.

(1)  God’s word assures us of heaven and a fuller, happier life.  Jesus is there and he is our humanity.  “In my flesh shall I see God.”  Lazarus and Dives are conscious beyond the grave.

(2)  Man’s life on the moral basis suggests more than life here.

(3)  Man’s influence dies not with him.  When the horse dies he is dead; man lives on in the influence he still has over others.

(4)  Living and dying he is conscious of a future.  The body totters, the mind is young and reaches out after God.  Christ spoke of his “exodus.”

3.  The reward for conduct here awaits him there–“a crown of righteousness”–the results of right living–heaven’s eternal joys.  “And for all that love his appearing.”

4.  To the righteous dying is but going home–“Safe at home forever,/And that’s enough for me!”