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Law

AN ORDER OF SERVICE FOR DIVINE WORSHIP; DESIGNED FOR PRIVATE DEVOTIONS, FAMILY GATHERINGS AND CHURCH MEETINGS.

Sermon—“Bible Testaments”

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Some of the points covered in this sermon:
• The two major divisions of the Bible—Old and New Testaments
• A testament is another term for covenant
• Examining the covenants/testaments of the Old Testament
• Examining the covenants/testaments of the New Testament
• Showing how the labels “Old Testament/Covenant” and “New Testament/Covenant” refer to the same covenant—the covenant of grace
• The Old Testament/Covenant is God’s administration (dispensation) of the covenant of grace before Christ came into the world; the New Testament/Covenant is God’s administration (dispensation) of the covenant of grace after Christ came into the world
• The substance of the Old and New Testaments/Covenants therefore teach the same gospel—sinners have always and only been saved according to the terms and promises of the covenant of grace

For the full order of service, including hymns and reading, please follow this link…

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These are notes of a sermon preached on Sunday 24 September 2017. They have not been proofread. This is the last part of a short series of sermons on the Bible compared to a plough. The subject of this sermon is the Gospel Law—the rule for the believer’s life is the Law of Christ, not the Heart Law or Moral Law (Ten Commandments).

An excerpt: “Given the importance of the subject, I will not rush through the teaching. I will therefore look only at the Province of Gospel Law in this study. What is the province of the Gospel Law? In a nutshell, there is a Heart Law and a Gospel Law—and each belongs to a restricted province. The Heart Law never trespasses into the province of the Gospel Law, and the Gospel Law never trespasses into the province of the Heart Law. To better explain this matter, I will gather my thoughts under four headings…”

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These are notes of a sermon preached on Sunday 1 October 2017. They have not been proofread. This is the last part of a short series of sermons on the Bible compared to a plough. The subject of this sermon is the principle of the Gospel Law explained by the Apostle Paul.

A minister of the gospel should accommodate himself to the customs and conventions of those to whom he is sent. Even as an ambassador must be diplomatic in his relations with a foreign country, so the ambassador for Christ must with tactfulness and sensitivity preach the Word of God to sinners. As described by the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 9:19-23, this was how he conducted his preaching ministry…

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These are notes of a sermon preached on Sunday 8 October 2017. They have not been proofread. This is the last part of a short series of sermons on the Bible compared to a plough. The subject of this sermon is the principle of the Gospel Law explained by the Lord Jesus Christ.

It has been established by the teachings of the Apostle Paul, that the Principle of the Gospel Law can be reduced to three words—LIFE IN CHRIST. In Romans 8:2, the Apostle Paul called it “the law of the spirit [new nature] of life in Christ Jesus”. As the Gospel Law is called the “Law of Christ” (1 Cor 9:21; Gal 6:2), and since the Lord Jesus Christ is the Covenant Head for His people, it is appropriate to hear what Christ Himself says about His Law. To that end, I have selected three passages from the Gospel According to John. The golden thread woven throughout each text is LIFE IN CHRSIT. Jesus uses three analogies…

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Two Kingdoms

26 Sep 2017, by

These are notes of a portion of a sermon preached on Sunday 8 October 2017. They have not been proofread. The subject is that of the two kingdoms.

The first two studies on the Gospel Law were designed to show the dividing lines between the Covenant of Works and the Covenant of Grace. Unless these Covenants be clearly distinguished and the jurisdiction of each province be strictly applied, then all types of confusion ensues on many levels of doctrine and practice. Reference was then made in the previous study to the kingdom of God. Jesus told Nicodemus, “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God…Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” (Jn 3:3,5) As the kingdom of God is one of the provinces I was speaking about in the first two studies, and Jesus distinguishes between it and the kingdom of this world, it seems appropriate to provide an overview of both kingdoms. There is a sharp division between these kingdoms:

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These are notes of a sermon preached on Sunday 15 October 2017. They have not been proofread. The subject is the precepts of the Gospel Law.

Having looked at the province and principle of the Gospel Law, we now turn to the precepts. A precept is “a general rule intended to regulate behavior or thought”. The Heart Law has two precepts (commandments)—to love God supremely and one’s neighbor as one’s self. The Moral Law (Ten Commandments) is a special application of the Heart Law for the nation of Israel, and it obviously has ten precepts. However, since the regenerate sinner’s rule for life is the Gospel Law, three questions arise—First, are the precepts of the Gospel Law in opposition to the Heart Law? Second, how many precepts are there in the Gospel Law? Third, what are the precepts of the Gospel Law?

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These are notes of a sermon preached on Sunday 22 October 2017. They have not been proofread. The subject is the personal precepts of the Gospel Law.

As I mentioned in the previous study, there are several ways the precepts of the Gospel Law could be catalogued. I have chosen to select the threefold category of Gospel precepts given by James in the first chapter of his epistle, the twenty-seventh verse:

James 1:27: “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.”

This text arranges the Gospel precepts under the following categories:

1. The God-ward Precepts of the Gospel Law—“Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father…”

2. The Relational Precepts of the Gospel Law—“To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction…”

3. The Personal Precepts of the Gospel Law—“To keep himself unspotted from the world.”

Now, rather than beginning with the God-ward precepts or the relational precepts, I feel it is in our best interest to begin with the personal precepts. I say this, because if the believer has no rule over his own soul, then he is like a city that is broken down, and without walls (Prov 25:28). Indeed, if he lacks the personal discipline of keeping his own heart with all diligence (Prov 4:23), then how will he hope to be faithful in those precepts that relate to God and others?

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These are notes of a sermon preached on Sunday 22 October 2017. They have not been proofread. The subject is the personal precepts of the Gospel Law.

If the believer is to keep himself unspotted from the world (Js 1:27), then he must learn how to govern his own soul. Otherwise, he will be like a city that is broken down, and without walls (Prov 25:28). If the believer lacks the personal discipline to keep his own heart with all diligence (Prov 4:23), then he will experience spiritual declension and suffer a backslidden condition. It is for this reason we have been looking into the two natures that reside in the believer’s soul. Thus far, we have considered (1) the names given to the two natures; (2) the leading characteristics of the two natures; (3) the dividing lines between the two natures. In this study, I wish to open up (4) the bitter conflict between the two natures and (5) the prescribed treatment of the two natures.

However, before looking at the bitter conflict, allow me to answer a common objection that is brought against this teaching:

OBJECTION: If there are two natures residing in the soul, then doesn’t this mean the believer will suffer from a multiple personality disorder?

No, not at all. First, the scriptures distinguish…

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These are notes of a sermon preached on Sunday 29 October 2017. They have not been proofread. The subject is the God-ward precepts of the Gospel Law.

In a single statement, James reduces the precepts of the Gospel Law under three headings:

1. The God-ward Precepts of the Gospel Law—“Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father…”

2. The Relational Precepts of the Gospel Law—“To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction…”

3. The Personal Precepts of the Gospel Law—“To keep himself unspotted from the world.”

Having looked more closely at the personal precepts of the Gospel Law, we now turn our attention to the God-ward precepts.

When the precepts of the Gospel Law were introduced (see the seventh study), I enumerated several God-ward precepts without making further comment. My only purpose in that study was show that the believer is given certain responsibilities towards God. I wish now to expand the list, but as it is only my intention to highlight the precepts, I will not provide a commentary for each text. This I will leave for the believer to explore…

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These are notes of a sermon preached on Sunday 29 October 2017. They have not been proofread. The subject is the relational precepts of the Gospel Law. These notes are more than 14,000 words in length (Paul’s Epistle to the church in Rome is just under 10,000 words). The size is attributed to every scripture reference quoted in full. Although my commentary is relatively short, yet I have provided a fairly extensive outline for the various duties of the believer.

As pointed in the introduction to the Gospel precepts (seventh study), James appears to be establishing a baseline from which the believer’s pure and undefiled walk with God may be measured. He is not restricting pure and undefiled religion to visit ONLY the fatherless and widows in their affliction. Rather, he is showing that if the believer is ready to communicate with those in their worst condition, then that is the starting point that ensures he will communicate with others in their best condition. Henceforth, with one statement, James is able to show how the believer is responsible to walk with others on all levels of society. I have arranged the relational precepts within the context of four social circles—(1) The Believer’s Duty towards the World; (2) The Believer’s Duty towards the Government; (3) The Believer’s Duty Towards the Church; (4) The Believer’s Duty towards the Family. The first social circle is the widest, for it encompasses everyone the believer may come into contact with on a global level. The second social circle is the next widest, for it involves the believer’s duty towards those in authority within a specific country or region. The third social circle is more narrow, for it is restricted to those that belong as members to the same church. The fourth circle is the most narrow, for it includes only those belonging to the believer’s family. Let us begin with the widest social circle—the believer’s duty towards the world.

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On Sanctification

19 Sep 2017, by

To which of the Divine Persons is the sanctification of the believer attributed?

(1) God the Father, by electing love. There is a sanctification which is more peculiarly ascribed to God the Father; and which is no other than his eternal election of men to it: under the law, persons and things separated and devoted to holy uses, are said to be “sanctified”; hence those who are set apart by God for his use and service, and are chosen by him to holiness here and hereafter, are said “to be sanctified by God the Father” (Jude 1:1).

(2) God the Son, by justifying grace. There is a sanctification also that is more peculiar to Christ the Son of God; not only as he is the representative of his people, and is “holiness to the Lord” for them; which the high priest had upon his forehead, who was a type of him, and the representative of Israel; and as he has the whole stock of grace and holiness in his hands, which is communicated to the saints as is necessary; and as the holiness…

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The Gospel Law

19 Aug 2017, by

Question 1. What blessings are connected with faith in Christ Jesus?

Answer. The blessings connected with faith in Christ Jesus are, a freedom from the bondage of sin, Satan, the world, death and the law, with free access to the Father, and a hearty welcome to all the glory of the gospel and the blessings of God’s house. (Jn 3.14-17; Rom 5.2 & 6.14 & 8.1-4; Eph 2.18-22; l Jn 2.12-14 & 5.4-5)

Question 2. Since a believer is made free from the law, is it any part of his freedom to be at liberty to sin?

Answer. No; for he is called to holiness; and though he is dead to, and free from, the law of works, he is not now, nor does he wish to be, without law to God but…

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As I understand you are frequently troubled, and put to unnecessary expense, with impertinent and unedifying letters, I humbly beg excuse for troubling you again at this time, hoping you will not have reason at least to complain of the impertinence of this letter, how much soever of its ignorance; and not at all of its expense. I had the happiness last night, as in the good providence of God I have often had before, to hear you at Monkwell Street Chapel, on the text “Stand fast in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free,” &c., with much satisfaction, and, I hope by the blessing of God, with some edification. I think, if, after such a sermon, and the doctrines contained in and enforced by it, your adversaries continue to…

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When the apostle came first into the regions of Galatia, he and his message were most cordially received. His personal deformity, which he calls the temptation in his flesh, they despised not, but received him as an angel of God, even as Christ Jesus. The weight and power of the message counter balanced all the unsightliness of the messenger. The joyful tidings that he brought so excited their gratitude, that they would have pulled out their own eyes, and given them to Paul. But love soonest hot is soonest cold.

Paul withdraws from these regions, to lengthen the cords of Zion, and to spread the curtains of her habitation a little farther; with an intent, in due time, to return and strengthen her stakes, which he had left in Galatia. But, as the enemy often sows tares while men sleep, so he often…

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There is a darkness upon all mankind that may be felt, which man by sin has brought upon himself. “Darkness has covered the earth, and gross darkness the people.” Under this dismal gloom Satan carries on his cursed works, and supports his infernal kingdom in the hearts of the children of men. “He rules in the hearts of the disobedient.” And mankind, being habituated to this darkness, and loving the works of it, hate the light, and will not come to it, because it discovers and brings to light their evil deeds; flashes convictions of sin, and gives cutting reproofs and rebukes for it. “All things that are reproved are made manifest by the light which doth appear, for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.” Hence it is that “men love darkness rather than light, because their deeds are evil.” And Satan, the enemy both of God and man labours hard to…

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