Saturday, July 28, 2012


“Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word. Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed. And there was great joy in that city” (Acts 8:4-8)
My calling as a Bible preacher requires me to be available and follow Christ. This I still want to do. I believe the office of an evangelist is still a calling God uses today. It is still a valid New Testament calling. However, much of what passes for evangelism in our day is not very biblical. Not only is an evangelist to go from place to place bearing the good news, but I believe from the example of Philip and the Ethiopian eunuch in Acts, we can see an evangelist does the following:

1) Philip was led of the Spirit (Acts 8:29).

2) Like the apostle and the prophet he traveled to different places in itinerant ministry (Acts 8:4).

3) He expounded and explained God’s word (Acts 8:12, 31).

4) He preached Christ (Acts 8:5, 35).

5) He baptized new converts (Acts 8:12, 13, 38).

6) He planted churches (Acts 8:5, 38).

Some may take issue with the last example, but the fact that there were many converts saved and baptized was the beginning of the Samarian church, and the Ethiopian eunuch was the beginning of the Ethiopian church. Philip did all these things in an age where there was no modern transportation; no convenience stores; no air conditioning; no churches or praying people. There was much opposition and resentment. Yet with all this primitiveness, God worked and saved men and women according to His will. At first only Philip preached in Samaria (Acts 8:5). Then the apostles at Jerusalem heard about it, and Peter and John were sent also (Acts 8:14). Acts 8 gives the most detailed view of the work of an evangelist in the Bible, but there are other ones.

Over the centuries there have been a number of evangelists (often called itinerant preachers). Perhaps the most famous evangelist in history was George Whitefield. He certainly was mightily used of God. In Britain, and in America, God used this man. He was an instrument in the Great Awakening of the 1700s in New England. He came over from England seven times to preach, and wherever he went there were the crowds, and usually the power of God was there. He actually died in Newburyport, Massachusetts on September 30, 1770, and is buried under the church pulpit there at Old South Presbyterian Church. His last sermon was preached there.

After reading the two volumes Life of George Whitefield by Arnold Dallimore, published by Banner of Truth, and also by Crossway here in the USA, I was inspired in my evangelism and missionary work. Whitefield, without a doubt was the most famous evangelist since Philip. Seeing all the good done by him impressed me, especially since we need revival today as much as they did back in the 1700s. I visited his burial place in Newburyport in 1981, and wept as I was there, as I recounted his life in my mind from my recent reading of those books. As I wept I prayed to God “Please Lord, send us another man or two like this one, to preach in power your word”. Oh, that God would bless us with revival in this day in this 21st century! We need it!

One more thing about George Whitefield. Several churches live today that he started in England, Scotland and America. He was a church planter, as well as an exhorter. Yes, we must pray that God will use some of us in that way today. We have some good churches in the land today, but sadly, not as many as we once had. Things are stale. Things are corrupted. Some are simply playing church! Many do not preach the truth of the gospel. Many do not stand against sin. Many are asleep! Can we cry “Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead and Christ shall give thee light.” (Ephesians 5:14) “O LORD, I have heard thy speech, and was afraid: O LORD, revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in wrath remember mercy.” (Habakkuk 3:2) “Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee? Show us thy mercy O LORD, and grant us thy salvation” (Psalm 85:6,7)

Please ponder and pray about this as we wait upon God. It is so true. Thank you!
The visible Church is now a 'mixed' body. Believers and unbelievers, holy and unholy, converted and unconverted, are now mingled in every congregation, and often sit side by side. It passes the power of man to separate them. False profession is often so like true; and grace is often so weak and feeble, that, in many cases, the right discernment of character is an impossibility. The wheat and the chaff will continue together until the Lord returns.

But there will be a dreadful separation at the last day. The unerring judgment of the King of kings shall at length divide the wheat from the chaff, and divide them for evermore. The righteous shall be gathered into a place of happiness and safety. The wicked shall be cast down to shame and everlasting contempt. In the great sifting day, every one shall go to his own place.
Expository Thoughts on the Gospels: Luke Vol 1, [Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1986], 97, 98.
         Published by Charles Woodruff- email:

Monday, July 16, 2012


I wanted to share a message by someone who was a unique and powerful voice for God in the 20th century. There weren't that many preaching the Old Gospel back then, because the gospel had been largely overridden by the New Gospel. I will let Brother Barnard explain that to you, as he will do very well. The reason why this message is so needed in our day is because it is the solid truth as it was in the early church; as it was in the Reformation; and in the great Revivals. It is not contaminated, and warped as most of what is called 'gospel' has been in our day. It is God's simple unchanging truth, designed by the Sovereign God to save sinners. Yes, it will still do that when plainly preached. Heed this message, and grow, is my prayer. (cw)

By Rolfe Barnard (1904-1969)

Now my friends, I come to say that the Old Gospel of God's Grace is opposed to this "new gospel" of part grace and part man. The Old Gospel, which is the true Gospel of God, safeguarded some values which this new gospel loses. Will you hear me carefully now? The new gospel that we have today by an uncertain universal redemption and universal divine saving purpose compels itself to cheapen grace and to cheapen the cross of Christ—by denying that the Father and the Son are sovereign in salvation. This new gospel assures us that after God in Christ has done all that They can or will do, it depends finally on each man's own choice whether God's purpose to save him is realized or not.

Now my friends, this popular position has two unhappy results — this preaching that God has done His part and now He helplessly stands by while you decide whether or not his purpose shall be realized:

In the first place, this position compels us to misunderstand the significance of the gracious invitations of Christ in the Gospel. When we hear the invitations of these preachers who pervert the Gospel—they are not the expressions of the tender patience of a mighty Sovereign; they are the pathetic pleas of human desire. And so the enthroned Lord of glory under present-day preaching is suddenly changed into a weak, futile figure, knocking at the human heart which He is powerless to open. My friends, this is a shameful dishonor to the Sovereign Christ of the New Testament.

In the second place, this "new gospel" as it is preached forces us to deny our dependence upon God; when it comes to vital decisions; it takes us out of God's hands. It tells us that after all, we are the master of our fate and the captain of our souls. And it so undermines the very foundation of our relationship with our Maker. No wonder the converts of today are so often both irreverent and irreligious!

The Old Gospel speaks very differently in expounding man's need of Christ; the Old Gospel stresses something almost ignored today. That something is that sinners cannot obey the Gospel any more than they can obey the Law, apart from renewal of heart. On the other hand, declaring Christ's power to save, the Old Gospel proclaims Him as the Author and chief agent of conversion. It preaches Him as coming by His Spirit as the Gospel goes forth to renew men's hearts and draw them to Himself. Thus, the Old Gospel, while stressing that faith is man's duty, stresses also that faith is not in man's power. God must give what He commands. Ephesians 2:8 says, "For by grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God."

Hebrews 12:2a says:  "Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith."'

Thus the Old Gospel announces not merely that men must come to Christ for salvation, but the Old Gospel also announces that men cannot come unless God draws them. John 6:44 says, "No man can come to Me, except the Father which hath sent Me draw him."

John 14:6 says, "Jesus saith unto him, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life: no man cometh unto the Father but by Me."

John 3:27 says, "John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from Heaven."

Thus, my friends, the Old Gospel does what desperately needs to be done; it labors to overthrow self-confidence, it labors to convince sinners that salvation is altogether out of their hands, and to shut sinners up to a self-despairing dependence on the glorious grace of a Sovereign Saviour, not only for their righteousness, but for their faith, too. Thus the Old Gospel doesn't talk about deciding for Christ, as we hear today. For this business of deciding for Christ suggests voting a person into office. It suggests an act in which the candidate plays no part, beyond offering himself for election. Everything is settled by the voter's independent choice. I wish people would believe me when I tell you that we do not vote God's Son into office as our Saviour! Nor does our Saviour remain passive while preachers campaign on His behalf.

My friends, coming to Christ, resting on Christ and turning from sin in full surrender to Christ is far different from deciding for Christ as your Saviour. Those who pervert the Gospel beg people to accept Jesus as their Saviour, and they will be saved. That is a lie out of Hell, because it is not in the Bible. If a person does not surrender to Jesus Christ as Lord to rule and reign over the life —he is not saved! We also hear these words spoken by preachers who pervert the Gospel:  "Now sinner, God has done His part—the Devil wants you, and Christ wants you, and you have the deciding vote." But, my friends, that is not so! Christ didn't just offer Himself for office. He is working now—He is on a throne ruling and reigning as Prophet, Priest, and King. He does not stand by while we try to get people to decide for Him as the Gospel is proclaimed. He comes in the Spirit actively to draw men to Himself, and thus we preachers say that He is a Saviour for sinners. The Father and the Spirit draw sinners to Christ.

Salvation is of the Lord. Thank God it is all in Christ. And to the question, "What must I do to be saved?" And this is the question of questions. The Old Gospel replies, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ." And then somebody says, "What does that mean?" The Old Gospel replies, "It means knowing one's self to be a sinner and knowing the Christ who died for sinners. It means to abandon all self-righteousness and self-confidence, and to cast yourself wholly upon Christ for pardon and peace. It means exchanging one's natural enmity and rebellion against God for a spirit of grateful submission to the will of Christ, through the renewing of one's heart by the Holy Ghost. It means God taking a sinner and making him a new creature in Christ."

The next question how am I to go about believing on Christ and repenting? "Brother Barnard, you say I have no natural ability to do these things?" I didn't say that—God says that! "If I have no ability to do these things, how am I to go about believing on Christ and repenting? If you say I must—and I can't—how can it come to pass?" To that perplexing question, and yet true one, the Old Gospel answers, "Listen, sinner friend, look to Christ. Quit looking to yourself; quit listening to your old bent and feeble will; look to Christ, seek the Lord, beg for mercy." 1 Samuel 2:8 says, "He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory."

Isaiah 45:22 says, "Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else."

Isaiah 55:6 says. "Seek ye the Lord while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near."

Jeremiah 29:13 says, "And ye shall seek Me, and find Me, when ye shall search for Me with all your heart."

Cry to Christ, just as you are, cast yourself on His mercy, ask Him to give you a new heart, working in you true repentance and faith. Ask Christ to take away your evil heart of unbelief and to write His law in your heart. Draw near to Him, watching, praying, reading, and hearing His Word. And continue to seek the Lord until He speaks peace to you.

God Almighty has to perform a miracle in you and reveal Christ in you, for you to have eternal life. John 17:3 says, "And this is life eternal, that they might know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, Whom Thou hast sent."

Luke 10:22 says, "All things are delivered to Me of My Father: and no man knoweth Who the Son is, but the Father; and Who the Father is, but the Son, and He to whom the Son shall reveal Him."

The Holy Ghost has to baptize you into the body of Christ. 1 Corinthians 12:13a says, "For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body."

Our Lord Jesus Christ is not passively waiting, but is actively working to bring His chosen people to faith. The preaching of the "new gospel" is called bringing men to Christ, as if only men moved while Christ stands still. The true Gospel is the coming of Christ to men. As the Gospel is preached, and Christ is set before men's eyes, the mighty Saviour, Whom the Gospel proclaims is busy (Praise God!) doing His work through the Word. Not standing by, but visiting sinners with salvation, awakening them to faith and drawing them in mercy to Himself. Thank God, we don't have to use all these methods of the flesh to get somebody to decide to accept Christ! We just have to proclaim Christ in the power of the Holy Ghost! We don't have to look at those poor sinners and know that it all depends on them. But we know that as we preach Christ, He is standing by, He is working, He is dealing with men. He is opening blind eyes and, bless God; He is drawing sinners to Himself. Oh, how glorious it is to proclaim the Christ Who came into the world to save sinners! Praise His Holy Name!

Luke 5:32 says, "I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance."

Galatians 1:6-9 says, "I marvel that ye are so soon removed from Him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel, which is not another, but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the Gospel of Christ. 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. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed."  Amen.

Thursday, July 05, 2012


You cannot believe everything you read; nor everything you see; nor everything you hear; neither everything you think you know. One of the supposed dilemmas of man is “the quest for truth.” All of us may have asked at one time or another “why am I here?” We can certainly see that in the present difficulties of America, and for that matter, the entire world, it is almost impossible to discern the real truth. For instance; how did the economy get in the present mess? Why were we told that gas prices last summer were so high because China and India, etc. were developing rapidly and using much more oil now? Now that gas prices are sinking, does this mean that China, India and other developing nations have stopped developing? What is the literal truth?

We were not told the truth about illegal aliens. We were told that the illegals are not taking jobs from American citizens, that they are mostly taking jobs no American wants to do. Ask an American construction worker if this is the truth and see what answer you get. Also, what about the border fence that was approved and started almost six years ago. Is it finished yet? No! And we are told there were many technical problems involving buying border land that caused the problems. What about “global warming?” Are we being told the truth? We are told the pollution from industrialized nations is the cause of temperatures rising and polar ice melting. I have always had great respect for scientists. I wanted to be one when I was young. But we definitely are not being told the whole truth regarding global warming and its dangers. There is a political agenda here. It is to penalize the productive nations. Actually they cannot give a good answer why the USA had a very cold autumn last year. Does that appear to be “global warming?”

One thing is sure; the politicians are not going to give us the truth. The news media is not going to give us the truth. Hollywood is not going to give us the truth. Where is the truth? The same place it has always been –in the word of God! That old despised book that has been ridiculed, hated, dissected and diluted is still the place of straight answers. Even more so, the old book tells us the truth about THE TRUTH, Jesus Christ. He said “I am the way, the truth and the life, no man cometh unto the Father but by me” (John 14:6). Some have said “How do we know that Jesus really existed?” Well, we could ask how we know that George Washington, or Abraham Lincoln, or Napoleon Bonaparte, or even Princess Diana even existed since they are not here now, on earth in the flesh. There is as much or more proof that Jesus Christ existed, and that He still exists today, than any of these other persons, or anyone else you can name. Just one proof is the transformed lives of millions, both today, and in the past. Jesus said; “Upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18). In spite of attempts over the centuries to destroy Christ’s church, it still exists and grows. Even in China where it was persecuted, and hated by the communist regime for over 50 years, the church is vibrant with millions of professed believers. The truth prevailed in spite of persecution.

Yes, literal truth exists in the person of Christ and His word. “And this is the record that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life” (1 John 5:11-12). Also, read this about Jesus Christ and His book: And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name” (John 20:30-31). “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness; and all these things (our needs, such as food, housing clothing etc...) shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33).

                                        THE SCRIPTURE
"The Scripture is both the breeder and feeder of grace. How is the convert born, but by `the word of truth'? (James 1:18). How doth he grow, but by `the sincere milk of the Word.'?"
(1 Peter 2:2)   - Thomas Watson

 (Author unknown; traditional American folk melody)

I am weak but Thou art strong, Jesus keep me from all wrong
I'll be satisfied as long, as I walk, Dear Lord, close to Thee.

Just a closer walk with Thee, Grant it Jesus, is my plea
Daily walkin' close to Thee, Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

Through this world of toils and snares, If I falter Lord, who cares?
Who with me my burden shares? None but Thee, dear Lord, none but Thee.

Just a closer walk with Thee, Grant it Jesus, is my plea
Daily walkin' close to Thee, Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

When my feeble life is o'er, And time for me will be no more
Guide me gently, safely o'er, To Thy kingdom dear Lord, to Thy shore.

Just a closer walk with Thee, Grant it Jesus, is my plea
Daily walkin' close to Thee, Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

Published by Charles Woodruff- email: