Monday, July 29, 2013

audio sermons

For those who appreciate audio sermons, there is a valuable quantity to be found from the London ministry of Rev. Keith Watkins on

One that I first listened to on cassette not far short of twenty years ago, and which made a lasting impression, is the sermon on Lovest thou Me? I would also recommend the series on Godly Sorrow. There are many precious sermons on the Song of Solomon, it is often rare to find multiple sermons on this book these days. Listen also to the inspired Title of Psalm 45 being expounded.

Mr Watkins came to paedobaptist convictions while worshipping in churches that did not hold to these principles and his sermons on Baptism are often very helpful for this reason. It's a shame that the very beneficial lectures on Church Principles given in London have not been put onto as these are very useful expositions of presbyterian and FP principles. You can hear a sermon on Acts 15 though and obtain Lectures on Church Principles on another site. You can also find more up to date sermons on the Old Testament and New Testament as preached in Barnoldswick (near Colne), Lancashire.

The series on Ruth is also very helpful in bringing out the types of Christ and the gospel in that narrative. In his book Ruth: Her Story for Today, Mr Watkins writes the following:

Through the work of the ministry, in which His truth is proclaimed with authority and sinners are called to faith and repentance, the Lord Jesus saves those who believe. Sinners are united to Christ through faith, and "faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Romans 10:17). Usually, they hear through a preacher, for "how shall they hear without a preacher?" (verse 14). The Lord uses the preaching of His servants to bring people to Himself. That is why Paul spoke of himself as a "masterbuilder", of all ministers as "labourers together with God", and of the Church as "God's building" (1 Corinthians 3:9,10). So we should pray for the ministers of the Word, that the Lord would use their labours to build His house.

Friday, July 12, 2013

My two mites

And will the LORD, indeed, condescend to avouch me for his own? Shall I be of his chosen ones! Will the FATHER of mercies look upon me as accepted in the beloved, and mark me as the object of his peculiar love? Hath my JESUS purchased me with the peculiar price of his blood? Hath the HOLY GHOST visited my soul with the influences of his peculiar grace? Am I, indeed, the object of the united mercy of the Holy Three in One: and are the peculiar blessings of the covenant, the portion of my soul? LORD! grant me grace this day to avouch myself, with all I have, and all I am, to be thine forever. Take my two mites (for soul and body are nothing more, compared to this vast treasury) and accept them, O LORD, in JESUS, for of thine own do I give thee. Witness for me, ye angels of light, that I will know no other GOD but the LORD GOD of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; that I desire to be distinguished from all the nations of the earth, that are not the Israel of GOD, as separated from them; and that henceforth I will make mention of his righteousness, even his only, who is the GOD of my life, and will be my portion forever.

Robert Hawker


Saturday, July 06, 2013

breaking bread

It is good, though not always possible, to witness visibly the minister actually break the bread at the Lord's table. There is some historical and doctrinal significance to this - since it not only functioned as an obedience to the example of Christ but affirmed that Christ's presence was spiritual and not locally as a physical substance with, around, under or even within the bread. It seems that for this reason Lutherans, historically did not break the bread i.e. in order to signify that the substance of Christ was joined to the bread. As a side point it is worth noting that breaking of bread of bread in Scripture does not always or necessarily refer to the Lord's Supper (Acts 27:35 - it is debatable to what extent other uses of the term "breaking of bread" in the book of Acts refer to the Lord's Supper, Acts 2:46 is clearly common meals as per Luke 9:16; 24:30&35; Matt. 14:19; 15:36; Mark 6:41; 8:6,19; and Jeremiah 16:7). 

The apostle Paul asks: "The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?" (1 Cor 10:16). In other words, there is a greater spiritual significance to the bread and its being broken that we must enter into. If we would consider the bread that is set before us at the Lord's Table, John Willison reminds us that "Bread, ere it be fit to nourish us, must be first sown, and die in the earth; then it must be threshed, grinded in the mill, baken in the oven, broken and eaten: So Christ, that he might be a fit Saviour to us, was content to die, and be bruised for our sins, and scorched in the oven of his Father's wrath. Bread is the most necessary thing in the world; it strengthens man s heart, it is the staff that upholds his life; so Christ is the mercy of mercies, the most useful and necessary blessing to our starving souls".

He goes on: "When we see the minister take the bread, think how God did choose and take Christ from among men to be our Mediator, and a sacrifice for our sins. When the minister sets apart, blesses, and consecrates the bread, think how God set apart and sent his Son, sanctified and furnished with all gifts and graces needful to his mediatory office".

When you see the bread broken, think on the breaking and tormenting of Christ s body, and the bruising of his soul for our sins. He suffered a double death, one in his soul, and another in his body; he suffered from men and devils: But all was nothing to what he suffered from his Father; for, when men were wounding his body, the Father s hand bruised his soul, made a thousand wounds therein, and poured in a whole ocean of wrath upon him: he brake him with breach upon breach, and overwhelmed him with one wave of vengeance upon the back of another, till all his billows went over him. This was a sad time to our Saviour: yet all these floods could not drown his love to us, nor make him quit the grip he had taken of us, but, come of him what will, his poor people must not perish; his love to them flamed highest when his sufferings were greatest. 
Again, when you see the bread broken, look to Christ's wounds as an open city of refuge for thy soul, that is pursued by justice, to take sanctuary in: His wounds are laid open, that you may see into his bleeding heart, and see his yearning bowels of mercy, and hear them sounding towards you, an object of pity and spectacle of misery. Poor shelterless soul, quit all other shelters, and flee to the clefts of the rock here opened, saying, "This is my rest, and here I will stay." 
Pray at this time, "Lord, may my hard heart be broken and melted, that I may in some measure be conformed to my broken Saviour" Or, "Lord, break the united forces of my sins, and scatter them by thy mighty arm."
When you see the minister offering the bread to the communicants, and hear him saying, "Take ye, eat ye," think how freely God offers his Son, and Christ offers himself to be ours: Think how you see him at the head of the table, making offer of himself to you, saying, "Take me, and the whole purchase of my blood; take my sealed testament, and all the legacies in it; take a sealed pardon of all your sins, and a sealed right to eternal life."