Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Advice to Mainstream IFB Pastors

“Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue: For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.” John 12:42-43

The Bible talks a lot about people worrying about what others think. This is obviously a deep-seated problem in human nature. Today, it often starts when children are in school and succumb to peer pressure. This creates a life-long habit of worrying about what others think. Next, they’re worrying about what their coworkers think, and those that become pastors are bringing that fear with them to the pulpit.

If I could change just one thing about my independent Baptist brethren, I would eliminate their fear. We have an epidemic of pastors who worry too much about what people think of them. It’s not that only a few of us believe right on key doctrines. A lot of pastors believe right and preach right about a lot of things, but their problem is fear.

There are churches that are shrinking because the people in the pews do not see a difference between their pastor’s preaching and what is being preached in other churches. I know of a pastor who is a dynamic speaker and believes right on salvation, yet he is not experiencing much growth because he seemingly condones other churches that teach that you must repent of your sins to be saved.

Sure, he’ll expound on the subject from time to time to the core group, and the sharpest people in the church might notice and appreciate it, but what about the rest of the congregation that assumes Lordship Salvation Baptist down the street is fine? Salvation is the most important doctrine, sir! If you believe differently than most churches around you, then why don’t you tell your whole congregation that on a Sunday morning?

When you do preach against false doctrine, tell them they won’t hear this kind of preaching in most churches. There is a great falling away, yet most pastors lead people to believe that any IFB church will do. They don’t differentiate themselves because they don’t want to get ostracized from the fellowship, but this tactic backfires and their own congregation dwindles.

Friend, quit worrying about what people are going to think. Yes, initially you might lose Mr. Moneybags deacon or whoever, but people are drawn to confident preachers who aren’t afraid to tell it like it is. You aren’t running a fun center with all the bells and whistles, so the only thing that is going to set you apart from the multitude of conservative Baptist churches around you is the boldness to preach unpopular doctrine. Even if you lost a few members and zero of your pastor friends agreed with you, your overall attendance would likely increase.

Just standing up to your own congregation isn’t enough. If you are a pastor who is invited to speak at other churches or Bible colleges, and you know they are messed up on a key doctrine (not something minor or nit-picky), then school them on it. The worst that can happen is they won’t ask you back next year, but the best that can happen is that you help turn things around in the fundamental Baptist movement!

If you spoke out more on the repentance issue, some of the pastors you are worried about offending might even get straightened out! Not only that, but those who started preaching against you would be giving you free advertising. Some of their people might search the scriptures and realize you are right.

It’s like when the Pharisees worried about being kicked out of the synagogues. Just think how many people would have gotten saved if those chief rulers would have spoken up! Why don’t you use your influence as a “chief ruler,” and start making more of an impact in your circle? Strive to be more Christ-like and stop worrying about your reputation.

“But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:” Philippians 2:7

Here is a sermon on making yourself of no reputation

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

USB Preaching Flash Drives

We live in a time when evil people are trying to prevent the gospel from being spread under the guise of labeling biblical preaching as “hate speech.” With the future of internet regulation uncertain, it is imperative to find alternative ways to spread sound doctrine on a large scale. Enter USB flash drives…

Spreading the Preaching

USB flash drives are not only a great way to store and transfer computer data, but they are also an alternative to CDs and DVDs when it comes to distributing sermons. Flash drives are smaller and more durable than a CD or DVD and can hold a lot more sermons. They can be played on a smart TV, a laptop, some video game consoles, and in many newer cars. Hopefully, we can get the preaching flash drives into the hands of thousands of people who can listen to the sermons and then pass them on to others.

Audio USB Flash Drives

The audio sermon flash drives are perfect to listen to in the car, at the office, or at home while doing mundane tasks. Those of us accustomed to long drives through the desert know that the internet service on our phones can waver. That’s where the USB flash drives come in. A lot of newer vehicles now have USB ports, but for vehicles that are not equipped with this technology, a simple adapter can be purchased. Here’s the link to an adapter that got rave reviews from a friend who purchased it recently:

Video USB Flash Drives

The video flash drives are an excellent tool for educating children since kids tend to want to watch the sermons as opposed to just listening. Using flash drives instead of watching the sermon videos on YouTube requires no internet connection and is a great way to protect young children from reading unwholesome comments or clicking on inappropriate videos. My nephew who is almost ten uses the USB flash drives to watch multiple sermon videos nightly on a laptop and has learned a ton of Bible doctrine as a result.

USB Flash Drives as Gifts

Because of the small size and sleek design, people tend to react positively to being presented with a USB stick preloaded with sermons. These small flash drives are easy to carry around in your pocket and are an excellent resource to leave with new converts at the door when out soul winning. They would also make a unique Christmas gift for a friend or loved one.

Click here to purchase a variety of USB sermon sticks from Framing the World Productions.

USB flash drives and other resources such as CDs and DVDs are always available for free at our church here in Tempe, Arizona. If you live in the area or are able to make the trip, come visit us in person, and we’ll hook you up.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Fight the Good Fight

“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:” –the Apostle Paul

In the Old Testament we read a lot about physical battles, but in the New Testament the Bible teaches that “we wrestle not against flesh and blood” and that “the weapons of our warfare are not carnal.” There is still a war going on and many battles to be fought, but it’s a spiritual warfare, not a physical one.

“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” Ephesians 6:12

Now, a lot of people get it when we say that in the Old Testament they fought all these physical battles, but in the New Testament we don’t. Everybody’s got that down it seems—they realize we aren’t still in a physical fight. But what they fail to understand is that we are still at war. We are in a spiritual warfare against our own flesh, against sin, and against wicked people who teach false doctrine and try to silence us.

"For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members." Romans 7:22-23

“(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;” 2 Corinthians 10:4-5

“Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.” Romans 16:17-18

“They that forsake the law praise the wicked: but such as keep the law contend with them.” Proverbs 28:4

There’s a Christianity today that has forsaken the law by not doing any fighting at all. They don’t understand that from Old Testament to New Testament we are just going from a physical fight to a spiritual fight. The average church today teaches that we went from a physical fight to NO fight, and that our job is to just get along with everybody. But there are in fact spiritual battles going on today, and that’s why the Old Testament battles are so applicable.

Here is a sermon to go with this article

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Judge Not!

Judge not! Judge not! People keep repeating that as some kind of mantra, but it just doesn’t make sense. Today’s watered-down Christianity that teaches we should never judge anyone is not logical and is a perversion of scripture.

Maybe I should use the whole judge-not thing next time I go to court…

I’m offended by your name, your honor. You’re a “judge,” and the Bible says, “Judge not.” Or perhaps next time I reprimand my two-year-old, he should respond with, “Only God can judge me.”

The Bible doesn’t teach that we should never judge, but people often take Matthew 7:1 out of context. They ignore the next few verses and what the passage is actually saying:

“Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.” Matthew 7:1-5

Notice it doesn’t say to leave the mote in your brother’s eye. What the passage is saying is to make sure you aren’t a hypocrite and take care of your own problem first. It’s like when you’re on an airplane and the flight attendant does that safety demonstration. They tell you to put the oxygen mask on yourself first, and then you can help someone else.

We shouldn’t have a holier-than-thou attitude, but do you know what it means to judge? It means to make a decision—to have an opinion. What about the homos? “Who am I to judge?” What about rape, murder, pillaging? “No opinion. Only God can judge.” Do you realize how ridiculous that sounds!?

Ironically, when people tell us we are judgmental for preaching against certain sins or certain people, they are, in effect, judging us. Somehow it is okay for them to tell us that they feel that we are doing something wrong, yet they don’t think we should make judgments based on what GOD says is wrong.

“Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.” John 7:24

People will try to say that, because you aren’t perfect, you can’t judge anyone. I guess no one can correct their children, speak out against anybody, or preach the Word of God. How would I obey the following verse, which applies to me as a pastor?

“Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine.” 2 Timothy 4:2

When people criticize me for preaching God’s law, it’s not really me that they are disagreeing with. Their problem isn’t with me but rather with the “lawgiver.” People will inevitably play the judge-not card when something in the Bible shines a light on their sin.

Here is a sermon where I go into this subject in more detail.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Fixating on One Issue

“For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.” Acts 20:27

Have you ever known people that are obsessed with one subject? No matter what you try to talk to them about, it always goes back to that one thing. There are pastors that every sermon they preach, they somehow tie it in with their favorite hobby-horse issue. Fixating on one issue is a common tendency that many of us struggle with. The Bible is a deep book, so as Christians, and especially as pastors, we need to make a concerted effort to stay balanced.

Some preachers only like to talk about the King James Bible versus other versions. Others focus on end-times prophecy, creation versus evolution, or even specific false religions. Some people want to blame all of the evil in the world on Islam or Catholicism, and they wonder why I don’t preach more about their most hated religion. They need to realize that the Devil is in control of all false religions, so I try to hit on all of them.

I don’t want to be known for just one thing. I don’t want to be just that post-trib guy, because I also want to be the guy that defends the King James Bible. I want to be the one that takes a hard stand against the homos, but I also have a lot to say about Bible reading and memorization. I like to preach sermons on marriage and child rearing, but I’m also all about soul winning.

Little kids often want to watch the same movie or hear the same book read to them over and over again, but as we get older our interests should broaden. Babes in Christ will often want to fixate on a convenient doctrine that doesn’t require a change in their life. They want to keep hearing how bad the homos are or what’s going to happen in the end times. They aren’t interested in hearing preaching against their besetting sin, but that’s precisely what they need to hear.

If you are considering becoming a pastor, you need to take an interest in a variety of different subjects—both popular and unpopular. One of the reasons I like doing the Wednesday night chapter sermons is that it forces me to preach about things I may not have otherwise thought to preach on.

There are people in the pulpits as well as in the pews that go overboard on certain things. We need to make sure that we get a well-rounded view of Scripture instead of trying to make every chapter of the Bible about that one doctrine we are fixated on. This is especially true for aspiring pastors. People will enjoy the preaching when they first start attending a new church, but they will quickly become bored once they realize the sermons all revolve around one topic. If you want to grow spiritually, you need a balanced diet, and if you are a preacher, you need to avoid running any one subject into the ground.

Here is a sermon to go with this article.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Street Preaching Clowns

The BBC Documentary entitled, “Hate Preachers in America,” came out a few days ago. What I didn’t like about the film is that they put our church side by side with a pompous gang of “street preachers” who hold up signs and yell at people out in public. Since they went back and forth between showing our church and that other group, someone might get the impression that we are affiliated with those clowns.

The group featured in the documentary is led by Reuben Israel, a Zionist with a lot of false doctrine. Most street preachers believe that you have to repent of your sins to be saved, and many of them teach that you can lose your salvation. For example, Reuben Israel has said that you if you commit suicide you will go to Hell. The worst part of the documentary was when one of the street preachers, Aiden, actually said that he doesn’t sin anymore.

“If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” 1 John 1:8

“But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. Galatians 1:8

Not only are most street preachers preaching another gospel, but they go around pointing out people’s sins in a rude way. For example, the documentary showed a street preacher condemning some people who were outside of a bar. This message is not the gospel, and approaching people in that way is not going to get anyone saved. One does not have to repent of the sin of drunkenness to be saved.

People do need to realize their sinful condition, but giving them a general example such as, “We’ve all told a lie before,” will usually suffice. The condescending attitude of many street preachers stems from the fact that they think they got saved by turning over a new leaf.

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9

Preaching that we are all sinners like the Bible says is much more loving and tactful and will always get a better response. Those who start coming to church will hear hard preaching against specific sins, but the goal of soul winning is not to get the sin out of people’s lives.

“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Romans 3:23

Another major difference between us and the street preaching crowd is our approach in dealing with the Sodomites. We aren’t telling homos to get saved, because they have already been turned over to a reprobate mind and can no longer believe the gospel. We preach what the Bible says about sodomy, but we would not purposely vex ourselves by attending a filthy queer pride event.

“I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me.” Psalm 101:3

The lady who filmed the documentary actually went with us to the Atlanta soul-winning marathon and also to another huge soul-winning event in Sacramento. She witnessed effective soul winning firsthand, yet none of that footage was included in the documentary. Instead of showing hundreds of people getting saved and many being baptized at our soul-winning events, she showed street preachers being obnoxious and spinning their wheels.

The goal of the documentary was to make us seem hateful, so portraying us as humble soul winners would not have furthered the BBC’s liberal agenda. Whenever they showed clips of me preaching, they attempted to undermine the message by editing out the supporting Bible verses. They wanted to make it seem like I was preaching my own opinions and that our church members were just following me instead of getting their views from the Bible. Somehow one verse slipped through, which is the perfect warning for the British Broadcasting Corporation and the United Kingdom:

“The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.” Psalm 9:17

On a less important note, I didn’t appreciate being painted as a Trump Supporter, when I don’t support Trump at all—I never have. All in all, I was pleased with the parts of the documentary about our church since it will help spread some truth and hopefully people will will be reached when they look up our sermons.

Here is the full BBC documentary 

Here is the BBC documentary with all the street preaching clowns edited out 

Monday, October 10, 2016

Being Friendly Out Soul-winning

“Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God.” 2 Corinthians 5:20

The number one thing that I see people doing wrong out soul winning is that they are being unfriendly. I find myself doing a mental face palm when I am out with a soul winner who is coming off as gruff and business-like. We need to remember that we are ambassadors for Christ, and being extra friendly will help overcome the fact that we are uninvited guests at someone else’s home.

I always start with a big smile when the person first answers the door. When you smile at someone, they usually smile back, and this gets things off to a good start. After exchanging smiles with someone they are far less likely to be rude to you.

The other way I try to keep things friendly is that I avoid “striving” or arguing with people. The Bible teaches that we are to be meek and gentle when instructing people who are unsaved or perhaps just mistaken about something. The best way to prevent getting into an unnecessary argument is to “avoid foolish questions.”

I avoid answering a weird question unless it is directly related to salvation. I’ll tell the person that “we can come back to that,” and then I’ll politely get back to the gospel presentation. Don’t let pride take over and get sucked into an unfruitful argument. Stay focused on the goal, which is getting people saved.

“And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient,” 2 Timothy 2:24

“But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain.” Titus 3:9

“Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom.” Proverbs 13:10

“For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” 1 Corinthians 2:2

“A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” Proverbs 18:24

“Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:” 1 Peter 3:8

Good social skills may take a little practice but loving others more will help put you in the right mindset. Start with a big smile, and be careful not to come across as abrasive or cold. Remember that you are bringing good news and that you will achieve better results by being friendly.

Here is a sermon on Soul Winning Dos and Don’ts.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Meddling In-laws

“Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” Genesis 2:24

Just remember: LEAVE AND CLEAVE. If there is ever a time that you have to choose between your parents and your spouse, always side with your spouse. It’s great to have a relationship with your parents, and the Bible commands us to honor our father and mother, but they should not be controlling the new household that was created when you got married. Parental interference is a common source of strife in marriage.

This interference can come in the form of bossiness, unsolicited advice, or in severe cases, disrespect toward your spouse. Marital problems arise when one spouse doesn’t like the way the other handles his or her parents. This is usually more of a problem with younger couples since many young people are just too attached to their parents when they first get married.

Numbers Chapter 30 deals with the nullification of a vow made by a woman. It is the girl’s father who has that power while she is living at home and not yet married, but that authority transfers to her husband once she gets married. This demonstrates the important principle that the husband, not the father, is the head of the wife.

Sometimes even just expressing concern about what your parents think can offend your spouse. For example, you are making some kind of a decision together, and you tell your spouse what your parents had to say about it. If this type of conversation is a hot button issue for your spouse, then the less that you mention your parents, the better.

One young married man told his wife to keep the garage door shut so his dad wouldn’t drive by and see the new vehicle in the garage. Even though it was the husband’s decision to make that purchase, the wife didn’t like his attitude. She didn’t feel like their finances should be anyone else’s business. This is a very mild example but it goes to show that your spouse doesn’t want you to have a childlike mindset about your parents. Men, your wife has a hard enough time submitting to you, and she has no desire to be under the authority of your parents. She wants to see you as independent.

A wife’s parents can sometimes try to control their son-in-law by bending their daughter’s ear about him. This kind of negativity can undermine a wife’s respect for her husband. The lady would be wise not to pass that information on to her husband since it will inevitably result in a fight. In fact, she may have to tell her parents that she can’t have anything to do with them until they stop criticizing her husband. This works both ways. A husband might need to tell his parents the same thing about how they treat his wife. Both spouses want to feel that they are a priority in each other’s lives and that the other person will always stand up for them.

Often with parents and other extended family members, staying away from them for a little while can help get them back on their best behavior. A short punishment period will usually make them think twice about not respecting certain boundaries. In rare cases, the in-laws may have to be cut off completely, but chances are, they will correct their behavior to preserve the relationship with their child and/or grandchildren. It’s all about having the courage to stand up to them. They are your parents, so they may have a tendency to treat you like a child no matter how old you are, but it is up to you to act like an adult. Men need to cut the apron strings, and women need to submit to their own husbands.

As parents we need to remember to stay out of our adult children’s marriages. If you’ve had trouble with your parents or in-laws, remember those struggles when your own children grow up and get married. Follow the golden rule and be the type of parent and in-law you wish you had.

Here is a sermon on Meddling In-laws

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Contentment vs. Covetousness

“Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” Hebrews 13:5

The Bible talks a lot about contentment versus covetousness because there is a tendency for people to never be satisfied. We really need very little in this world, and we can avoid temptation by living a simpler life and not getting caught up in materialism.

“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,” 2 Timothy 3:1-2

Seeing covetousness on that list reminds us of what a serious sin covetousness is. If we spend time with covetous people, we will start feeling competitive about material things. We should not be like the world where we exalt the rich and look down on the poor. The Bible teaches that God hates pride and that we shouldn’t even want to be rich.

“But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.” 1 Timothy 6:6-10

When you buy lottery tickets or get involved in get-rich-quick schemes, you are ignoring God’s Word. God often keeps us lean financially because he knows what is best for us. We are happier when we have just what we need in life.

“Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me:” Proverbs 30:8

We can avoid a lot of problems by not coveting after material wealth. Learn to be grateful for what God has given you: your health, a warm bed, food, shelter, and the opportunity to lay up treasures in heaven. Stop worrying about impressing other people, and just be thankful for the Lord’s provision.

“Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” Philippians 4:11

Here is a sermon: Not Satisfied With Abundance.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Marriage Takes Work

“For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.” Jude 1:4

Treating your spouse poorly because he or she can’t leave is like turning the grace of God into lasciviousness. Just as we should do good works after we are saved, we should also do work in our marriages. You’re on your best behavior while dating, but once you’re married, you get more comfortable in knowing that it’s a done deal. Now, that’s a great feeling, but don’t abuse that liberty.

Don’t Assume

Divorce is wicked, and you should purpose in your heart to never put away your spouse, but your husband or wife is not God, and they might break their promise. If your spouse leaves you, it wouldn’t be the first time that a husband or wife left in an IFB church. Even if your spouse seems very spiritual, your marriage might not be as secure as you think.

“Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.” 1 Corinthians 10:12

Women tend to be less direct in the way they communicate, so don’t assume everything is fine just because your wife isn’t complaining. Pay attention to her hints, because she may not be getting what she wants out of the relationship. Making an effort to plan dates with her can go a long way in making her feel loved and appreciated. Often, when a wife leaves or commits adultery, the husband didn’t even see it coming.

“But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife. 1 Corinthians 7:11

Notice it says, “But and if she depart.” That means she might do it!

Ladies, listen to your husband when he tells you there’s a problem. If he has some kind of pet peeve, correcting that thing should be a priority for you.

“Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.” Ephesians 5:22

“She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.” Proverbs 31:12

Preserve Attraction

Don’t become a slob after you get married, but making yourself appealing to your spouse isn’t only about hygiene and fitness. Staying in your proper roles will go a long away in keeping the attraction alive in your marriage. Men, your wife wants you to be a leader and to provide for her financially. Wives, your husband will find you more attractive when you respect him.

“But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.” 1 Timothy 5:8

“Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.” Ephesians 5:33

Common Courtesy

How do you speak to your spouse? Are you as courteous now as you were before you were married? Do you treat friends or coworkers better than you treat your own spouse?

“Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered. Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, BE COURTEOUS:” 1 Peter 3:7-8

Get Physical

“Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband. The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife. Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.” 1 Corinthians 7:3-5

Would you fast more than a couple of days? Stop turning each other down, and you’ll avoid a lot of heartache.

God hates divorce, but Christians are not above committing that sin. Studies show that the divorce rate is just as high among Baptists as it is among the general population. Taking your spouse for granted could someday blow up in your face. Men need to be respected and honored. Wives have a need to feel loved and appreciated. Both need intimacy and quality time together. Is your spouse completely satisfied in the relationship?

Here is a sermon on Turning Grace into Lasciviousness.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Dating Your Wife

“When a man hath taken a new wife, he shall not go out to war, neither shall he be charged with any business: but he shall be free at home one year, and shall cheer up his wife which he hath taken.” Deuteronomy 24:5

Dating Ideas Besides Going Out to Dinner

Men, spending quality time with your wife is an important part of marriage. Even if money is tight, dating your wife should be a priority. A picnic lunch can be just as enjoyable as an expensive meal at a restaurant, and a date doesn’t even have to involve food at all. A pedal boat ride or walking around downtown are just a couple of ideas. If you do not yet have children, there is no excuse for not having regular dates with your wife. Hint: Your wife doesn’t want to be responsible for planning every date. Take the initiative!

Dating When You Have Young Children

Your dates might look different depending on the season of life you are in. If you have young children and there is no trustworthy family member around to babysit, consider taking the kids along on the date or perhaps share a special candlelit meal after the children are in bed...

Be careful about every “date” happening at home though. Even if you have to bring the children along, your wife will be happier if you take her out on a regular basis. She may or may not tell you that, but it’s true. You might not enjoy your job, but your wife probably still sees it as your opportunity to get out of the house. If she is at home all day, getting out might be more important to her than you think.

Eventually, you’ll have teenagers to hold down the fort while just the two of you go on real dates, but you need to make her needs a priority right now. If you can’t afford to take the whole family to dinner, perhaps you could take them out for an ice cream cone after visiting a local pet store aka “the poor man’s zoo.”

Dating When You Have a Large Family

My wife and I have nine children, so even just running a few quick errands with my wife and our youngest baby feels like a date for us since the baby doesn’t talk yet. When my mom is in town, my wife and I are able to get out of the house together for longer periods—even overnight.

Whatever your system is for dating your spouse, be sure to communicate with her on this subject to make sure she is satisfied.

Here is a sermon on Loving Your Wife

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Neither Murmur Ye

“All the days of the afflicted are evil: but he that is of a merry heart hath a continual feast.” Proverbs 15:15

Having a merry heart is a choice we all need to make. The more we complain, the more trials we will have to go through before we learn that lesson. We’ve all seen spoiled children who’ve been given too much and are never happy. It is going through the valleys in life that teaches us to appreciate the mountain tops. We need to be grateful for God’s provisions and not murmur about what we don’t have.

“Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” Hebrews 13:5

The story in Numbers chapter 11 was recorded to teach us not to complain:

"And when the people complained, it displeased the Lord: and the Lord heard it; and his anger was kindled; and the fire of the Lord burnt among them, and consumed them that were in the uttermost parts of the camp. And the people cried unto Moses; and when Moses prayed unto the Lord, the fire was quenched. And he called the name of the place Taberah: because the fire of the Lord burnt among them. And the mixt multitude that was among them fell a lusting: and the children of Israel also wept again, and said, Who shall give us flesh to eat? We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely; the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlick: But now our soul is dried away: there is nothing at all, beside this manna, before our eyes." (Numbers 11:1-6)

“Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.” 1 Corinthians 10:10

Sometimes we read that story and find ourselves sympathizing with the children of Israel since they had to eat the same food all the time, but the manna was not intended to be their diet for the rest of their lives. Instead of murmuring against Moses, they could have focused on their future in the promised land. We need to keep in mind that the trials in our life are often temporary.

Not only were the children of Israel short-sighted, but when they complained against Moses, it was really a complaint against God. God was the one who told Moses to lead them out of Egypt, and the manna was provided by God.

“Then Moses heard the people weep throughout their families, every man in the door of his tent: and the anger of the Lord was kindled greatly; Moses also was displeased.” Numbers 11:10

Not only is murmuring a sin that displeases the Lord, but it also affects other people. Just as Moses was displeased when the people complained, the people around you are also discouraged. When you make others miserable, they treat you poorly, and your situation gets even worse. Sometimes we have legitimate problems, but there is a difference between a murmur and a prayer request.

“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

When we have a need, we ought to pray and ask God for it, but we need to be careful not to express ingratitude. If you have a legitimate complaint, turn it into a prayer, and don’t forget to praise God for what he has already given you. Don’t be selfish in your prayer requests either:

“Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.” James 4:2-3

We don’t learn to be content by getting everything we want. Contentment is achieved when we learn to appreciate what we have and trust the Lord to know what is best for us. Don’t be that person that discourages others by seeing the glass as half empty. We need to appreciate the manna that God gives us and realize that there are even better things to come.

“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9

Here is a sermon on Murmuring and Complaining.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Recruiting Laborers

“For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard. And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way…”

In this parable found in Matthew 20, people who were standing around idle were recruited to work. These people were not necessarily looking for work but were recruited anyway. We ought to do the same when we come across people who are saved but are not in a soul-winning church.

A common phrase you hear fundamental Baptists say out soul-winning is, “We’re not trying to take you away from your church.” This saying should be used rarely if ever. I can only understand someone saying that if the person named a Baptist church that was known to be a soul-winning church. Unfortunately, though, most Christians are not winning souls at all, and, yes, I do want to take somebody out of some dead-as-a-doornail church!

When you come across someone who is already saved, chances are they are in a less than ideal church. If you aren’t familiar with the church or even if you are and you know it’s a lame church, ask them this question: Does your church go out soul winning like we're doing?

“Teaching them to observe ALL THINGS whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” Matthew 28:20

This is actually what got me out of a liberal church as a teenager. A man presented me with an invitation to Regency Baptist Church, and when I said that I was a saved Baptist, he asked me that same thought-provoking question. The answer was no. I went home and told my parents about it, which led to our family visiting the church. We kept going there, and soon, I was soul winning and getting the sin out of my life.

“And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” Romans 10:15

It’s not just winning people to the Lord that makes a difference. We need to also be provoking other believers to good works. The person who invited me to his church that day had a part in thousands of people being saved through the ministry of Faithful Word Baptist Church, which I was later sent out to start. What if he had instead just said, “We’re not trying to take you away from your church,” and had never asked me about soul winning?

“And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.” Daniel 12:3

Here is a sermon on "Laboring in the Vineyard."

Monday, October 3, 2016

The Wife's Role as a Helper

“And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.” Genesis 2:18

The physical relationship is crucial in a marriage. When a couple goes too long without being intimate, things can become awkward, and they can end up going even longer. Occasionally a husband will be guilty of depriving his wife in this area, but more often than not, it is the wife that is the gatekeeper when it comes to intimacy. Although she shouldn’t approach being with her husband as a duty, a wise woman will help her husband avoid temptation by being available to meet his needs.

“Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.” - 1 Corinthians 7:5

A husband obviously needs his wife for companionship, but he also needs her help in other areas. One of the primary ways a wife helps her husband other than the relationship aspect of the marriage is by cooking, cleaning, and caring for the children while he is at work. Domestic chores can seem mundane, but a lady might find motivation in realizing how much these tasks are helping her husband.

“Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.” Proverbs 31:8

Being trustworthy with the finances is also an important way a wife should help her husband. This could be by just controlling her spending and finding the deals on food and clothing, or it could also include working on an endeavor from home while still taking care of the needs of her family.

“The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.” Proverbs 31:11

A common complaint from wives is that their husbands don’t help them enough around the house. Helping your wife around the house is great, but if you are doing your part by providing for your family financially, don’t feel guilty if your wife does most of the cooking and cleaning. Every couple is different in exactly how they divide the various responsibilities, but a woman should remember that her primary role in the marriage is to help her husband, and not vice versa.

“For the man is not of the woman: but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.” - 1 Corinthians11:8-9

Here is a sermon on marriage.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Letting Your Wife Stay Home

“I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.” 1 Timothy 5:14

There are all kinds of situations where a woman ends up working, including the husband telling the wife to work outside the home. I’m not saying it’s a sin for a woman to ever go to work, but it’s not God’s perfect will either. The Bible makes it clear that a man should provide for his family financially, and the woman should be the homemaker.

“But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.” 1 Timothy 5:8

When a man comes to me and tells me he is having trouble finding a job, I often respond by asking him how many hours he would like to work. When he responds with 40 hours a week, I tell him that is how much time he should spend trying to find a job. You can’t just e-mail one resume and then spend the rest of the day sitting on your fanny. If you are unemployed, you need to put in the time applying for a lot of different jobs, making the follow up calls, showing your face in person, and whatever else it takes to get working somewhere.

“Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord;” Romans 12:11

You may think that you will have a lot more money by sending your wife to work, but it could be putting you into a higher tax bracket. Neither one of you will feel like cooking from scratch each day, so you will probably end up eating takeout more often. You’ll for sure need two vehicles, and she will likely buy more clothing. You’ll come out a little ahead—but probably not as much as you had expected once you figure in all the hidden costs.

“When goods increase, they are increased that eat them: and what good is there to the owners thereof, saving the beholding of them with their eyes?” Ecclesiastes 5:11

“For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?” Luke 14:28

Even if you determine that you will be a little better off financially if your wife works, you’ll be spiritually better off if you follow God’s plan.

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33

Here is a sermon on women working in light of the Bible.