Fear of God Devotional: The Offense of Reformation Without Repentance



Is it possible to have true reformation in our lives and within our churches without repentance?

Anthony Mathenia explains in this video that true, biblical reformation cannot happen apart from repentance. Trying to change our own lives through our own strength will not work. We cannot fight sin in our lives without God.  

To bring about lasting, biblical reformation, we need people to come into contact with God and realize that their sin is an offense. They must turn from their sin and follow Christ. It is only then that there can be salvation and a continous reformation of the way we live. 

Acts 3:19 (NKJV) – “Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.” 

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Fatherhood Meetings in Montgomery July 21-22

This friday evening a small group of church, community and civil leaders will be gathering to consider the recovery of Biblical fatherhood. This is a critical topic for the health of church and family.

Location: Hilton Garden Inn, Eastchase Parkway, Montgomery, AL 36117

5:30   Meet and Greet
6:00   Meal Time – Welcome and Introduction of Guest
7:00   Program Begins

Scott Brown – NCFIC
Rev. William Owens – CAAP
Clarence Simmons – Chapel Library
William Green – Montgomery City Council
Chief Justice Roy Moore – Candidate for U.S Senate

8:15   Keynote Speaker

Carlton McLeod – CRCC and D6 Reformation
http://ift.tt/2u5vKtK

Saturday, July 22

Location: Young Meadows Presbyterian Church Montgomery, AL 36116
Start time: 8:00am
End time: 3:00pm

Carlton McLeod – Recovering Biblical Fatherhood
Rev. Owens – How the Welfare System Destroys the Family (Fatherhood)
Scott Brown – Father as the Protector of the Family
Clarence Simmons – Fatherhood and the Gospel
Jason Dohm – The Role of Marriage in Fatherhood
Paul Carrington – Father as the Spiritual Leader of the Family (Priest)

***RSVP to Tom Ford before July 21, 2017, by emailing [email protected] or calling (334)220-9550***

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Stirred up to Build the House of the Lord

In Ezra 1:1-5, we begin a story of hope in the midst of ruin. It is the beginning of a 117 year story of how God restores sinners – He brings them out of Babylon into his own house nurture and care. Everything that ever happened in history is for the purpose of telling the story of the rescue of a bride to bring her into a house. This is why God stirs up hearts to build the household of the Lord in Ezra. Here is how Ezra 1:1-5 flows:

I. The word of God is fulfilled, v1a

II. The Lord stirred up the spirit of a king, v1b

III. The Lord commanded Cyrus to issue a decree, v1c

IV. The Lord moves the spirits of the heads of fathers houses to rise up, v5

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Fear of God Devotional: Why Do Churches Often Ignore Necessary Reforms?



Why do churches often ignore necessary reforms?

Gary Powers explains in this video that it is sometimes difficult for churches to enact biblical reforms because of the way church government is structured. For instance, there is often a church board and senior pastors instead of a biblical eldership. There are many man-made ideas in church government that will sometimes override what Scripture commands regarding a certain subject.

Because of these structures within the church, men can be consequently afraid to preach the truth and make changes because they fear they will lose their jobs. Oftentimes, it is the fear of men that prevents us from doing what Scripture commands. Yet, we are called to fear God and obey and delight in His commandments. 

Psalm 112:1 (NKJV) – “Praise the Lord! Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, who delights greatly in His commandments.”

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Fear of God Devotional: What Was the Impact of the Reformation?



What was the impact of the Reformation?

Rob Ventura explains in this video that when we think of the result of the Reformation, the centrality of the Word of God and of preaching come to mind. A high view of Scripture, of the Gospel, of God, and of worship were just several glorious results that came out of the Reformation. 

God’s Word is perfect and it is true. Nothing else can compare to it. The Reformation was so beneficial because it helped to correct the false belief of the day that man’s traditions and ideas are superior to what God says in His Word. 

Psalm 25:4-5 (NKJV) – “Show me Your ways, O Lord; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; on You I wait all the day.” 

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Fear of God Devotional: A Story Of Repentance And A Broken Marriage



How can repentance salvation transform and heal a once-broken marriage?

Jason Dohm shares in this video a story of how salvation transformed an unsaved man that he knew and ultimately brought about a healing of a broken marriage. After his friend was born again, he spent a significant time among a Christian family. In time, he began to desire to be married again to his former, divorced wife.  

He called her and realized that she had been praying that he would have a turn of heart and come back. He and his wife were soon remarried. They now have had multiple children together. All this resulted from him encountering Christ and repenting. 

Ezekiel 36:26 (NKJV) – ” I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.”

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Fear of God Devotional: Justification: A Driving Force Behind the Reformation



What was a driving force behind the Reformation?

Joel Beeke explains in this video that one major driving force behind the Reformation was the doctrine of justification by faith alone. Once Luther, Calvin, and the other Reformers grasped hold of the doctrine of justification by faith alone, the Roman Catholic Church’s false teachings were exposed. A person’s supposed “good works” could never save a sinner. 

The Reformation soon became known as a reformation of grace alone – that grace alone saves us. While we are sanctified and cooperate with the Spirit in our sanctification, there is never any credit due to us or anything we that must do to “earn” our salvation. We are saved by God’s grace alone.  

Ephesians 2:8-9 (NKJV) – “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

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Hope in the Midst of Ruin

In this introduction to the book of Ezra we encounter a story of returning home after a time of ruin. The people of God have been captives in Babylon for seventy years. Now the seventy years has ended, and God is restoring His people. Ezra is one of the many examples in scripture where there is Hope in the midst of ruin. In every trend line of history, there are always two things happening: God is bringing many sons to glory, destroying the works of the devil and summing up all things in Christ. He is causing all things to work together for good. He is bringing you home. He is engaging you in a story of hope in the midst of ruin. All of history is the theater of redemption. You are always somewhere on God’s stage of redemption.

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Mourning for Sin Without Repentance of Sin

“Many mourn for their sins that do not truly repent of them, weep bitterly for them, and yet continue in love and league with them.” 

 

Matthew Henry The Concise Bible Commentary. N.p.: Thomas Nelson Inc, 2014. Print. 1 Samuel 24:16-22

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Fear of God Devotional: What is the Difference Between Worldly and Godly Sorrow?



What is the difference between worldly and godly sorrow?

Dennis Gunderson explains in this video that worldly sorrow involves sadness of being caught in sin or being known as sinful by others. It involves perhaps a regret of the effects of sin. A worldly sorrow dislikes the consequences of sin but not the sin itself.

But godly sorrow hates sin for what it is. It recognizes that sin is a defiance towards God and an uncalled-for rebellion against God. A person who demonstrates godly sorrow is grieved that he has rebelled against God despite His graciousness towards him. Godly sorrow involves a forsaking of sins out of a desire to obey God. 

2 Corinthians 7:10 (NKJV) – “For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death.” 

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Fear of God Devotional: What Is the Source of Repentance?



What is the source of repentance?

John Snyder explains in this video that we arrive at repentance by the Lord first showing us the distance between Himself, the Creator, and us, the created, which humbles us. God also shows us His purity. We realize the moral distance that separates us from God. We see our impurity and God’s purity. Even on our best days, we fall short.

When we realize the distance between God and us, we’re often tempted to try to fix ourselves, to be better people. This will always fail. It is not repentance. Repentance is not the mere turning away from ourselves. We must see the cross. When we look at the cross, see the beauty of Christ bearing our shame, and God placing His righteousness on us, it crushes our pride and destroys all hope of trying to “fix” ourselves. At that point, we are glad to turn from all things to Him. 

Romans 2:4 (NKJV) – “Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?” 

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Fear of God Devotional: Our Dependence on the Holy Spirit



Have we lost our ability to depend upon the Holy Spirit?

Carlton McLeod explains in this video that problem that we can be guilty of is that sometimes, we can lose our ability to depend upon the Holy Spirit and to realize that He directs His Church and that He is still powerful among us.

In healthy churches, you see a recovery of the fact that the Holy is still leading, moving, and guiding the Church of the living God.  

John 16:13-14 (NKJV) – ” However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you.”

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Fear of God Devotional: The Winds of Philosophy and Methodology



Will Scripture dictate how we live our lives or will we rely on the methodologies of men?

Paul Thompson explains in this video that we either will be governed by Scripture alone or we will live and rely upon the methodologies of men. Scripture is sufficient no matter your situation. We ought to be hungering and thirsting to understand what God desires for our life. 

It is sufficient to assist fathers to teach their children, it is sufficient for pastors to teach their congregation, it is sufficient to teach married couples about marriage. There is no need to look elsewhere for answers and guidance. If there is an issue in the church or family, Scripture speaks on that. What and who will we adopt as our ultimate source of authority?

Psalms 19:7-10 (NKJV) – “The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple; the statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes; the fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.” 

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Fear of God Devotional: They Searched the Scriptures



What was one of the primary benefits to come out of the Reformation?

Mike Davenport explains in this video that because the people during the time of the Reformation didn’t have the Bible in their own, common language, they couldn’t lean upon Scripture alone. They were dependent on the often-faulty interpretations of others. But, with the Scripture now translated, they could search the Word of God for themselves.

Why is the Reformation important for the Church and why should we be looking back to something that happened 500 years ago? The Reformation helped to communicate principles such as Scripture alone is sufficient and that we ought to do all for the glory of God alone. Today is no different. We also need to be a people that are directed by the glory of God alone and understand what God wants us to do and follow it with all of our hearts.  

Romans 10:17 (NKJV) – “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” 

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Fear of God Devotional: What Is Repentance?



What is repentance?

Don Hart explains in this video that one of the classic definitions of repentance is the act of turning from the direction of which you are going and doing an about-face and going in another direction.

Yet, what we think of as repentance often focuses too much on the act of “turning” and not enough on what we do after we “turn.” If we are saved, we will not only turn away from sin, but we will turn towards Christ. We will follow Him. It is the fruit of being saved. It is the evidence. 

Repentance is a duty that we have as Christians and one that we cannot fulfill unless He has changed our heart and made it into a heart of flesh instead of a heart of stone.  Only God can allow us to turn away from our sin and follow Him. 

Joel 2:12-13 (NKJV) – “‘Now, therefore,’ says the Lord, ‘Turn to Me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning.’ So rend your heart, and not your garments; return to the Lord your God, for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness; and He relents from doing harm.”

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