Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus (2 Timothy 1:13)

The Wicked, the Compromiser and the Fundamentalist (part III)

Monday, April 23, 2007
counting the cost...

(Click here for Part I of this series)
(Click here for Part II of this series)

Every action has its consequences; whether they be good or evil. In this post, we will have a look to see what the consequences of Ahab's (the wicked), Jehoshaphat's (the compromiser), and Micaiah's (the fundamentalist) actions were. I will probably hold off on making some final comments or sharing some final thoughts on this series until part IV. For now then, consider what:

-Ahab reaped:

First off, Ahab died. He died at the hands of the Syrian army in Ramoth-gilead; exactly as the prophet Micaiah had foretold. Despite all his scheming and his great skills as a warrior, Ahab was slained by an arrow, fired totally at random:

"And a certain man drew a bow at a venture, and smote the king of Israel between the joints of the harness: therefore he said to his chariot man, Turn thine hand, that thou mayest carry me out of the host; for I am wounded." (2 Chronicles 18:33)

Ahab, the wicked, lived a life of rebellion against God; a life totally devoted to sin. He therefore collected the wages of sin, which is death; both physical, and spiritual (Romans 6:23). Sadly, it didn't end there. Ahab's wife, Jezebel, also met a brutal death:

"And as Jehu entered in at the gate, she said, Had Zimri peace, who slew his master? And he lifted up his face to the window, and said, Who is on my side? who? And there looked out to him two or three eunuchs. And he said, Throw her down. So they threw her down: and some of her blood was sprinkled on the wall, and on the horses: and he trode her under foot." (2 Kings 9:31-33)

Yep, the wicked woman was thrown out of a window and trampled under foot, and we are told a little further that the prophecy of Elijah came true about her: wild dogs ate her body. Not a pretty picture.

Now, if you are wondering who Jehu is, in the above passage, let me explain. You see, the curse God put on Ahab for all his wickedness didn't affect only him and his idolatrous wife, it affected his son. Ahab's son, Joram, lost the Northern Kingdom of Israel to a man God had chosen to destroy the entire house of Abab, Jehu. Not only did Joram lose his kingdom, he lost his life:

"And Jehu drew a bow with his full strength, and smote Jehoram between his arms, and the arrow went out at his heart, and he sunk down in his chariot." (2 Kings 9:24)

Death, loss and destruction. That about sums up the consequences of Ahab's way of life.

-Jehoshaphat reaped:

The compromising believer who refused to heed to the prophecy of a faithful prophet, and allied himself with the wicked wretch Ahab, was bailed out of trouble on numerous occasions, but his losses were GREAT. Consider this foolishness Jehoshaphat got himself into:

"And the king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, I will disguise myself, and will go to the battle; but put thou on thy robes. So the king of Israel disguised himself; and they went to the battle. Now the king of Syria had commanded the captains of the chariots that were with him, saying, Fight ye not with small or great, save only with the king of Israel. And it came to pass, when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, It is the king of Israel. Therefore they compassed about him to fight: but Jehoshaphat cried out, and the LORD helped him; and God moved them to depart from him." (2 Chronicles 18:29-31)

Don't ask me how a man can be so foolish... but all this happened. King Jehoshaphat probably lost a lot of his soldiers in this doomed campaign. You'd think he would have learned his lesson, especially when we consider that he got a serious scolding from a prophet of the Lord upon his return to Jerusalem, but no, the Bible records that Jehoshaphat really hadn't learned anything. Ahab wasn't long dead that Jehoshaphat formed an alliance with the new king of the Northern Kingdom, Ahaziah:

"And after this did Jehoshaphat king of Judah join himself with Ahaziah king of Israel, who did very wickedly: And he joined himself with him to make ships to go to Tarshish: and they made the ships in Eziongeber. Then Eliezer the son of Dodavah of Mareshah prophesied against Jehoshaphat, saying, Because thou hast joined thyself with Ahaziah, the LORD hath broken thy works. And the ships were broken, that they were not able to go to Tarshish." (2 Chronicles 20:35-37)

Losing these ships probably hurt king Jehoshaphat in capital, since Tarshish was very far away (large, expensive ships were probably built and subsequently destroyed by the Lord). So, because of Jehoshaphat's compromises with the wicked, he was responsible for loss of life in Ramoth-gilead, and the loss of money in Ezion-geber.

It doesn't end there.

Remember how Jehoshaphat and Ahab got together? Jehoshaphat's son, Jehoram married one of Ahab's daughters. You want to venture a guess what kind of man Jehoram became?

"Now when Jehoram was risen up to the kingdom of his father, he strengthened himself, and slew all his brethren with the sword, and divers also of the princes of Israel... And he walked in the way of the kings of Israel, like as did the house of Ahab: for he had the daughter of Ahab to wife: and he wrought that which was evil in the eyes of the LORD... Moreover he made high places in the mountains of Judah, and caused the inhabitants of Jerusalem to commit fornication, and compelled Judah thereto." (2 Chronicles 21:4, 6, 11)

And for all his evil, the Lord plagued Jehoram. Two years he suffered of an incurable bowel disease, and then he died.

Not exactly a great legacy for king Jehoshaphat. Compromise costs. It costs big.

-Micaiah reaped:

Other than his incarceration in Ahab's dungeon in Samaria, we know nothing of Micahiah's earthly fate. There is a good chance Micaiah never got out of the dungeon; king Ahab ordered that Micaiah be kept in jail until his safe return (something that never happened).

Now let's suppose Micaiah spent the rest of his days in a Samaritan dungeon. Day-in and day-out, eating the bread of affliction and the water of affliction (2 Chronicles 18:26).

Not much fun.

Then consider what Micaiah saw right after he had breathed his last! What do you think the righteous Lord of the Earth, "who will render to every man according to his deeds" (Romans 2:6), had in store for Micaiah? Do you think Micaiah, when entering in the presence of his God, had any regrets about his fundamental conversation on the Earth?

I don't think so!

As you can see, none of our three characters had an easy time, but only one of the souls suffered for righteousness sake. Stay tuned for part IV of this series, for a few final thoughts...


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Friday Night Notes

Saturday, April 21, 2007
10,000 served...

With the arrival of warmer weather, sinners came out to the market by the thousands. The whole place was so animated and loud, it was difficult to remain focused while preaching the Gospel. We (pastor Tim and I) nonetheless carried on with our usual three hours of street evangelism; preaching the Gospel, distributing tracts, and walking around the downtown core with our Gospel signs.

Seeing such a multitude of people in the market is bittersweet...

Bitter because it is a foregone conclusion that the overwhelming majority of the people are up to no good in the market on Friday night. Bitter because with such crowds, the mockery and the blasphemy we contend with is all the more intense.

Sweet because the number of people exposed to the Gospel is GREAT! I did a quick sampling and some math tonight: I counted the number of souls that walked by me tonight in one minute. All these souls would have heard something of the Gospel, or would have accepted or refused a Bible tract (and we always ask the people: "would you like a Bible tract about Jesus?"). I counted roughly 20 souls/min. In three hours of evangelism, that's 3,600 souls. Multiply that by two since pastor Tim was on the other side of the street, that's 7,200. Then, add another 3,000 souls which another group of evangelists (from another church) were dealing with just a few blocks away. Easily over 10,000 souls received something of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ tonight. To quote my pastor: "I guess being out here tonight is better than staying home, lying on our couches!"

I'm thankful to God for the opportunity I had tonight to present His Truth to all those people tonight. I'm also thankful to Him that, by the working of the Holy Spirit, I'm becoming a much better soldier of the Cross. I'm becoming bolder and more at ease in the work of the Gospel. When I first started, it would take the whole first hour of evangelism for me to get in the groove; now, I'm ready in 5 minutes! Regardless of the mockery or the blasphemy of Satan's people! It's not easy, but I'm making progress. Praise God!

"Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ." (2 Timothy 2:3)

I also thank God for the opportunity to once again speak with Collin, the parking garage attendant; that my pastor was able to speak with the mayor of our city; and for the Canadian soldier I shared the Gospel with. His conscience was definitely disturbed by what he read on our Gospel signs. I'll be praying that the Lord will use some of the tracts we gave out tonight to regenerate some of His lost sheep. O that the Lord would make a soul winner out of me! A great fisher of men!

It's pretty late now, so I'm going to fore go the detailed report and end the notes here for tonight. Have a great weekend, dear readers. The Lord bless your Lord's Day.

Remember me in your prayers, dear saints.



All The Trouble...

Friday, April 20, 2007
...that comes from making things up...

Did you all hear about this: Click here.

Well, it's a good thing Romanists are around to tell us these things, 'cause I'll honestly tell you, I have no idea where they come up with their nonsense.

Limbo? Where in the world did this concept come from? I've read the Bible (cover-to-cover), and I've never come across "limbo". Not once.

"Theologians have long taught, however, that such children enjoy an eternal state of perfect natural happiness, a state commonly called limbo, but without being in communion with God."

Which theologians, and what were they smoking? "Perfect natural happiness... without God???" What is going on here?

This wickedness, of course, is symptomatic of a complete ignorance, and by extension, interest in the Word of God, the Bible. A man who keeps his nose in the Bible never comes to believe in "limbo", "purgatory" or "infant baptism" for that matter!

"Ladaria said no one could know for certain what becomes of unbaptized babies since Scripture is largely silent on the matter."

Well, duh! Of course the Scripture is silent on the matter of "unbaptized babies"! Babies weren't baptized! Nowhere will you read of John, or any of the other apostles baptizing babies! Nowhere!

What? Acts 16:15, you say? Acts 16:33? Acts 18:8? Are these your proof texts, evil Romanists? Read the Word of God and believe what it says, o foolish idolaters. Don't assume, or practice eisegesis just to fit your wicked ideas.

Parting shot:

I have had several Romanists come to my site. All of them claiming that Romanism is the "Lord's Church" (note the capitals). I was told that the pope, is nothing less than the "holy father", God's head representative in the world. You would think that with such credentials, Romanism would be a bit more consistent in their doctrines and practices.

Is the God not immutable? If He is, then how is it that less than 800 years ago, "God" approved the burning of heretics like Rand, and now, Rand is just "errant brother"? How is it that a pope once proclaimed complete separation from those "filthy Jews", and now, catholics believe that unbelieving Jews are saved? How is it that there was a "limbo"... and now... well not so sure about the whole "limbo" thing. Am I to believe that God changes as much as the popes have over the centuries?

Is it not time, o foolish papists, to repent and come to the knowledge of the Truth? It's a whole lot easier than making things up as you are going along...



My Fishing Spot

Thursday, April 19, 2007
a lot of bad fish...

This story appeared in one of our National, albeit Toronto-based newspapers:

Canada's cracked-out capital

The marketplace described in the article is "my marketplace", that is, it's where I do most (if not all) my street preaching.

Yes, it's that grim.


H/T to brother Pascal.

Friday Night Notes

Saturday, April 14, 2007
preaching the Gospel to the spiritually dead...

The Lord blessed my pastor with stronger health this week, so I wasn't alone tonight for my customary night of street preaching. The two of us split preaching duties over the three hours we were out there; while one preached, the other distributed Bible tracts. The marketplace was real busy tonight, so we were able to proclaim the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ to countless souls. The Lord save (and harden) whom He will.

It was, yet again, pretty depressing when we observed the reactions of the people to our preaching and the Word of God on our Gospel signs. The blasphemy, the mockery, and the all around apathy for God's Word was all around and the more we appealed to our audience, the more vile they got. My pastor summed it all up pretty well when, near the end of our time of evangelism, he said:

"They're sooo bad."

On the upside, there were a few good events tonight. First, I made friends with J.P., a panhandling drunk who is often around, begging for money. I was able to share a bit of the Gospel with him and he said he had respect for me. I told him I would pray for him, that he wouldn't be another Matthew, but that the Lord would save him from his current unprofitable way.

Second, I got to share the Gospel with Collin, the parking garage attendant, again. He told me he would try to come to come to church this Lord's Day. I really hope and pray that he'll do just that. It is extremely doubtful that Collin is born-again, but he is favorable to us, and to the Gospel. My hope is that further exposure to the Truth would cause him to truly consider, in a personal way, the salvation that is in Christ Jesus.

Third (and this one really made me smile), I had a rather unexpected reaction to my evangelism tonight by a young lady. She didn't curse at me, she didn't blaspheme. She didn't spit on me or attempt to hit me. She didn't mock or make any sort of crude gesture. Quite the opposite! She looked at me with a tender, caring expression on her face... and blew me a kiss.

The most aggravating moment tonight came when I conversed with a young lady who professed to be a Bible-believing Christian. She had a problem with my John 3:36 sign.

"That isn't the Good News," she said, "aren't you afraid you are going to be turning people off?"

"The Gospel is supposed to turn sinners off," I replied, "but to God's elect, the Gospel is life and they will come to Jesus by the preaching of God's Word."

Well, she wouldn't have any part of that! She insisted that Christians had to only show forth "love" toward the unconverted, not condemnation. Talking with this woman was such a pain. She claimed to know the Bible, yet she would say the most ludicrous things (like her claim that Jesus didn't preach about hell to the unconverted), and by far the worst moment came when a sodomite came by with a question:

"What do you think will happen to homosexuals when they die?"

"1 Corinthians 6:9-10 is clear, my friend," I began. "No homosexual will enter into the kingdom of God, and that means homosexuals will be cast into the lake of fire. Homosexuality is like fornication, adultery and other forms of sexual immorality..."

I was going to mention his need of repentance, but the woman cut me off with her "loving Gospel":

"Well, because of my belief in the Bible, I don't believe homosexuals will go to Heaven," she began. "But God loves you! It's important for you to know that no matter what, God loves you."

At this point, I was looking for a wall so I could knock my head against it. I sighed an enormous sigh of relief when she finally left.

That will be the notes for tonight, dear readers. I again apologize for the lack of blogging these last few weeks, things have been so busy at work, at church and with the family, it's difficult to get into the proper frame of mind to blog. I'll try to get back to it in the next few days.

Good night, dear readers. Have a blessed weekend.



Thursday Night Notes

Thursday, April 05, 2007
the audience isn't much better on Thursdays...

With the day off work tomorrow (Good Friday), I decided to go out preaching tonight. All by my little lonesome, I went downtown with my John 3:36 sign and did my best to proclaim and hand out God's Word for two or three hours. There were far more people downtown tonight than I would have thought (it wasn't Friday, and the temperature dipped down below 0 Celsius tonight).

The response to my evangelistic effort was more of the same: mockery, hatred, and concern for my mental health. Oh well... God was glorified.

On the upside, I gave out lots of Bible literature tonight and I had a few one-on-one conversations in which I was able to share the Gospel in great detail. I pray that the Lord will use my efforts tonight to save and sanctify, as He sees fit.

Tonight's highlights:

-I had a conversation with a young lady who claimed she believed the Bible was the Word of God... but she didn't really believe in God. My reaction: "What?"

-I came across one of the drunks who lives in the downtown streets. I recognized him from last week, when he quoted Romans 6:23 by heart and then asked me to leave him alone "'cause everyone knows that stuff". Well, tonight, I made sure to tell him that God wanted us to not just be hearers of the Word, but doers. The drunk knew what I was getting at, and just mumbled: "yeah... yeah... I know that..."

-A man disturbed my preaching to tell me that I wasn't proclaiming the Gospel well. He professed to being a Christian, and then explained that I was a poor salesmen with the Gospel. I told him I had no intention of selling anything, and that quite on the contrary, I preached knowing full well that most of my hearers would detest what I had to say. This perplexed the man and made it clear he disagreed with my methods. It was a strange exchange. He pointed out what he didn't like about my preaching... I gave him a Scriptural reason for what I was doing... and he answered with a "well... I disagree!" In the end, I don't think this man was a brother-in-the-Lord.

-On my way back home from the marketplace, I walked by a line of young people who trying to get into a dance club. A man in the line-up began cursing and blaspheming loudly against me when he read my Gospel sign. "I don't believe that #%#@!" he said. I replied that he would one day. Right behind him was a young lady who said: "Well... I believe that." To her I responded: "Miss, if you truly believed these words, you wouldn't be lining up here."

That's the notes for tonight. I'm going to bed. Have a blessed long weekend, dear readers. Have a good, God-centered Easter. Take quality time meditating on the greatest works the Lord has ever wrought: the work of the Cross, and the glorious Resurrection!