I am reading Iain Murray’s two-volume biography on D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones. If I were to teach a class on pastoral ministry, I would make it required reading. Lloyd-Jones was in many ways, years ahead of his time. He pastored in Wales from 1927-1939 which is the basis for volume 1. Murray’s volume 2 covers Lloyd-Jones’ ministry at London’s Metropolitan Chapel from 1939-1968 as well as in retirement. As a young pastor in 1930, Jones was preaching on Acts 17:30-31 regarding why so many did not discuss the coming judgment of God. His words could have been said today some 80 years later.
What accounts for the fact that so few ever speak of the judgment in these days is that they do not believe in God. They think that they do, but when you come to analyse their belief you find that it is but a projection of certain ideas that happen to please them. Their god is something which they created themselves, a being who is always prepared to oblige and excuse them. They do not worship with awe and respect, indeed they do not worship at all. They reveal that their so-called god is no god at all in their talk. For they are ever saying that “they simply cannot believe that God will punish the unrepentant sinner to all eternity, and this and that”. They cannot believe that God will do so, therefore they draw the conclusion that God does not and will not. In other words, God does what they believe he ought to do or not to do. What a false and blasphemous conception of God! How utterly untrue and unworthy! Such is the new paganism of today (1:214).
Categories: Church, God, Preaching, Salvation, Shepherding, Worship
That is why Jesus Himself has said:
(Luke 13:24 KJV) Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.
It takes more that to just seek we have to strive. Sad to think that so many seeking God will never enter in. This is a scary verse because He is talking about the narrow path and many not making it. Not the wide path.
Indeed, “Few are chosen.” Our salvation should cause us to praise God for his great grace that saves us.
Do you think you are seeing this in the church today?
Do you mean, “Are we seeing this new paganism in the church today?” I would say, “Yes.”
If you mean, “Are we seeing enough praise to God for his sovereign grace for our salvation?, I would say “No.”
The natural bent of man, of which I am one:), is that we do not want God to be that sovereign! We are proud and arrogant and believe that we are responsible for bringing ourselves back from the dead unto salvation.