Someone asked, where do the quotes come
from? The answer is from the
people who uttered them. But, how
did you find them? Oh, that. Some from Bishop Jerry, many from Rev
Bryan Dabney, a few from other places, some from Rev Geordie Menzies-Grierson, but
overall mostly from Bryan. He
always has a few great ones to share. On to the On Point quotes –
"[T]he propitious smiles of Heaven, can
never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and
right, which Heaven itself has ordained."
First Inaugural Address, 1789
Beware lest any man spoil you
through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the
rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
There is a rank due to the United
States, among nations, which will be withheld, if not absolutely lost, by the
reputation of weakness.
Before a standing army can rule,
the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The
supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the
whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band
of regular troops that can be, on any pretense, raised in the United States. A
military force, at the command of Congress, can execute no laws, but such as
the people perceive to be just and constitutional; for they will possess the
power, and jealousy will instantly inspire the inclination, to resist the
execution of a law which appears to them unjust and oppressive.
An Examination into the
Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution
10 October 1787
Then Jesus beholding him loved
him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever
thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and
come, take up the cross, and follow me.
For I will give you a mouth and
wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist.
Unto the pure all things are
pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even
their mind and conscience is defiled. They profess that they know God; but in works
they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work
When days of darkness come upon
us, let us not count it a strange thing. Rather let us remember that lessons
are learned on such days which would never have been learned in sunshine.
19th century Anglican bishop and author
(Holiness, p. 123)
Satan seizes and directs all the
mighty forces of this world! War is seized ... and is no longer the patriot’s
struggle for freedom or the defense of home and native land. Instead, it
becomes the tool of despotism; it crushes liberty and enslaves freedom. War
carries on a campaign of lust, rape, cruelty, desolation, and death ...
Money... is diverted by Satan for selfish and unholy purposes ... Men become illustrious
and esteemed ... when they are money-getters and money- keepers. Education ...
becomes a source of pride and ungodly power... Under the guise of Christian
learning, education becomes the most powerful ally to Satan by unsettling faith
in God’s Word and opening a wide door of skepticism in the temple of God.
19th and 20th
century theologian and author
(Guide to Spiritual
Warfare, pp. 72-73)
Do not begin telling me that
there is a metaphorical fire in hell. Who worries about that? If a man were to
threaten to give me a metaphorical blow on the head, I should worry very little
about it. He would be welcome to give me as many as he pleased. And what do the
wicked say? ‘We do not worry about metaphorical fires.’ But they are real, sir,
yes, as real as yourself.
English pastor and author
The most terrifying words in the
English language are: I'm from the government and I'm here to help.
And at the same time the
consciousness of being at war, and therefore in danger, makes the handing-over
of all power to a small caste seem the natural, unavoidable condition of
survival ... It does not matter whether the war is actually happening, and,
since no decisive victory is possible, it does not matter whether the war is
going well or badly. All that is needed is that a state of war should exist ...
The war, therefore, if we judge it by the standards of previous wars, is merely
an imposture. It is like the battles between certain ruminant animals whose
horns are set at such an angle that they are incapable of hurting one another.
But though it is unreal it is not meaningless. It eats up the surplus of
consumable goods, and it helps to preserve the special mental atmosphere that a
hierarchical society needs. War, it will be seen, is now a purely internal
affair. In the past, the ruling groups of all countries, although they might
recognize their common interest and therefore limit the destructiveness of war,
did fight against one another, and the victor always plundered the vanquished.
In our own day they are not fighting against one another at all. The war is
waged by each ruling group against its own subjects, and the object of the war
is not to make or prevent conquests of territory, but to keep the structure of
society intact. The very word “war”, therefore, has become misleading. It would
probably be accurate to say that by becoming continuous war has ceased to
The Propers for today are found
on Page 210-211, with the Collect first:
Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity.
EEP, we beseech thee, O Lord, thy
Church with thy perpetual mercy; and, because the frailty of man without thee
cannot but fall, keep us ever by thy help from all things hurtful, and lead us
to all things profitable to our salvation; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Dru Arnold read the Epistle, which
came from Saint Paul’s Letter to the Galatians, the Sixth Chapter, beginning at
the Eleventh Verse. Paul continues to warn us of the conflict in our lives
between the things valued here on earth and those valued by the forces of
heaven (God). Writing to the
Gentiles in Galatia, using to the rite of circumcision as a symbol for all of The
Law, he warns, “As many as desire to make a fair shew in the flesh, they
constrain you to be circumcised; only lest they should suffer persecution for
the cross of Christ. For neither they themselves who are circumcised keep the
law; but desire to have you circumcised, that they may glory in your
flesh.” Those who are every eager
to have you follow “The Law” themselves fail to follow its intent. Paul goes on to say that Jesus’ new
covenant transcends The Law and The Law no longer has hold over man. For in Jesus there is salvation, may
“the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.”
E see how large a letter I have
written unto you with mine own hand. As many as desire to make a fair shew in
the flesh, they constrain you to be circumcised; only lest they should suffer
persecution for the cross of Christ. For neither they themselves who are
circumcised keep the law; but desire to have you circumcised, that they may
glory in your flesh. But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of
our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the
world. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor
uncircumcision, but a new creature. And as many as walk according to this rule,
peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God. From henceforth let no
man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. Brethren,
the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.
Hap Arnold read today’s Holy Gospel which was written
in the Sixth Chapter of the Gospel according to St. Matthew, beginning at the
Twenty-Fourth Verse. Jesus tells us, “No man can serve two masters …Ye cannot
serve God and mammon
.” There is only one first place, only one
can be in that place. We either
place God in first place or we put something else there. If we wish riches in this world as the
most important thing in our life, we place the things of this world in first
place. If we follow our Lord Jesus
and His instruction, we place God in that first place. But, what of this world? “Be not anxious for your life, what ye
shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on.
Is not the life more than the food, and the body than the raiment? Behold the
birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into
barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value
than they?” Jesus tells us not to
worry, for worry is of no positive value.
When faced with a problem, we must do our best, not merely claim to do
our best, and trust in God. For,
“which of you by being anxious can add one cubit unto the measure of his life?”
God knows we have need of the things of this world while we are in it, he knows
we worry about, “What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal
shall we be clothed?” If we first
seek “His kingdom, and His righteousness” He will take care of all our
necessities. But we must do as He
asks, not merely say we are doing so.
If you follow God’s directions, you will be wealthy beyond
description. While you will never
be “Bill Gates” rich, you will never lack what you need on this earth or in the
world to come.
Jesus tells us, “Be not therefore anxious for the
morrow: for the morrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient unto the day is
the evil thereof.” We are not to
worry, but to our best and let the morrow come as it will. We are to do our best, not merely say
we are doing our best. For if we
truly do our best, then that is all that can be done and there is no point in
Using an earlier phrase, Trust in God and Dread Naught.
O man can serve two masters: for either he will hate
the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the
other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say unto you, Be not anxious
for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your
body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than the food, and the body
than the raiment? Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do
they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are
not ye of much more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add
one cubit unto the measure of his life? And why are ye anxious concerning
raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not,
neither do they spin: yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory
was not arrayed like one of these. But if God doth so clothe the grass of the
field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much
more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Be not therefore anxious, saying, What
shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? For
after all these things do the Gentiles seek; for your heavenly Father knoweth
that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first his kingdom, and his
righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Be not therefore
anxious for the morrow: for the morrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient
unto the day is the evil thereof.
Reverend Deacon Jack Arnold - Time and Action
Today’s sermon tied the Collect, Epistle and Gospel
together and is partly contained in the forewords above.
Consider the words of the Collect, “… Keep … thy Church with thy perpetual mercy; and … keep us ever by
thy help from all things hurtful, and lead us to all things profitable to our
When the Collect talks about the church, it is not
talking about buildings; it is talking about us. Each of us; all of us.
We need God’s Mercy and Grace to keep us from desiring those things that
are bad for us and help us to see we really want those things that are good for
Speaking of things, just like the Jewish based
Christians of Paul’s time, it often seems like everyone has secret rituals,
handshakes or hoops they want you to jump through to be really IN. Paul reminds us that all fall short,
and special fancy diets, days or outfits do not change us. It is only by the Grace of God through
our Lord Jesus that we find real salvation. Our salvation is not based on the ritual, the handshake or
even the slice of the circumcision scalpel.
Our salvation comes one way, by the Grace of God
through our Lord Jesus. It is not
through us to decide the salvation, but by God through His Son, who died for
our sins. We are not Cramerians, nor are we Calvinists or Lutherans, but we are
Christians primarily, who like the ideas of Cramner, et al. We should never be
idenitified as followers of man but of Christ and God. When one becomes a
follower of man, he ends up following the devil in a fashion, for if we serve
ourselves, or follow ourselves, we tend up to end up in death, but if we follow
Him, we have the gift of life as St. Paul explains “For the wages of sin is
death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
(Romans 6:23 KJV)
That brings us to Saint Matthew’s point, one cannot
serve two masters. Like that bad
pun, “When you come to a fork in the road, take it.” You cannot travel both paths. We must choose who we will serve: God or the world. If we chose God, that does not mean
that we turn our back on the world around us, but rather that we interface with
the world using the Rules of Engagement given to us by our Lord. We prioritize our actions with Him
first. Our family motto; God • Honor • Country • Family is an
example of this prioritization.
First things first. Build
from the inside out and the bottom up.
Do not mistake this motto for perfection, we have erred and strayed from
our ways like every lost sheep, probably farther than most. But we know which way is The Way and
keep correcting back on course.
Prioritization can be as a simple as coming home
early on Saturday night so that you get a good night’s sleep and are ready for
the Sunday church service. It can
be as complex as leaving a job that interferes with your honoring God, Country
or Family. First things first.
Through out the Bible we are exhorted to respect God,
be honorable, work hard and take care of our families. If we do these things, following God’s
Will, our fiscal standing here on earth will be sound. Follow these precepts, you will never
be lacking, but you will never be inordinately wealthy, “Bill Gates rich” so to
speak. For to do that requires
reprioritization to wealth in the first place. Replacing allegiance to God with allegiance to wealth is a
one way ticket to a destination you don’t want.
The last part of this reading is the one we often
have the most trouble with.
We are far too ready to borrow trouble from tomorrow. Every day, I pray at least twice for
help with this. It is getting
better; I am confident on one thoughtful level that no good comes of worry, yet
I have such a hard time acting on that thought.
God wants you to be happy; He knows what will make
you happy. God does not mind if
you have fun along the way, but never pursue fun confusing it with
happiness. In the end, you won’t
Heaven is at the end of an
uphill trail. The easy downhill
trail does not lead to the summit.
The time is now, not tomorrow. The time has come, indeed. How will you ACT?
It is by our actions we are known.
Be of God - Live of God - Act of God
We are oft fortunate to get
copies of Bishop Jerry’s sermon notes.
Today is one of those Sundays.
Today’s sermon starts off with the collect, and like always, it will
give you a lot to consider in your heart.
Sunday after Trinity
8 September 2013,
Our Lord, in His Sermon on the Mount, teaches us a believer cannot be divided
in his faith. He cannot travel the righteous path that is Narrow, and leads up
to Heaven, and the wicked path called the Broad Way that leads down to
destruction, at the same time. There remains before us, just as in the days of
Noah’s Ark, an open door. It is an invitation to salvation. Whomsoever will may
enter in by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. There is no place in the Church of
God for duplicity. If we so much desire to retain our old free will, than we
shall also retain the consequences of our sins; but, if we surrender our wills
to Christ, and accept His will for our lives, then shall our lives (thought,
word, and deed) be directed from on high and not from the depths of Hell.
As pointed out in the Prayer of Collect, our righteousness is not our own, but
belongs to Christ. He covers us with His righteousness else we would fall
miserably short of the mark. He sustains us moment by moment in the way that we
should go; yet, He knows our frail frames and, as the Good Samaritan, finds us,
heals us, provides us transport, and lodges us in the fair harbors of His love
as we fail and flounder on the Way. His love and care are a perpetual love and
care; and those things that we overcome by faith are profitable to our
Paul, in his Epistle to the Galatians for today, warns against any labors of
the hand to achieve salvation. It is not the good work we do by our hands that
make us worthy of the family of God, but the work that Christ did on the cross
– to satisfy the terms of the law on our behalf – that is edifying and
efficacious for our salvation. Men will attempt to convince us to do all sorts
of works, and comply with all kinds of formulas, to EARN salvation; but it
cannot be. There is only One Way – the way of the cross of Christ. He paid it
Just prior to the text today from the Gospel of St. Matthew, Jesus has taught
us how to give alms – how to do, as well, our works of good – in secret so that
our reward will be in heaven and not seen upon earth for self-gratification. If
our gifts are to Heaven, they shall not be seen openly upon the earth; and if
they are made openly to be seen on earth, they shall not grace the walls of
Heaven. Our Lord also, in verses 5-15 of this same chapter, He teaches us how
to pray. He also gives us the Lord’s Prayer that is to be prayed in communal
worship (i.e. Our
Father….), as well as private moments of
devotion. He gives us a rule for fasting so that we appear to the world
not to fast. Our Father in Heaven knows every secret thing, and He cherishes
those acts of righteousness that are performed for His own glory alone and not
that of any man.
So Jesus begins today by telling us that we cannot serve two masters. Since as
masters has full authority over his subject, such a prospect of having two
masters is logically impossible. 24 “No
man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other;
or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and
” God is not divided in His sovereignty – He is either
the sovereign of our souls, or the flesh is that sovereign. It cannot be both
ways. Our flesh is constantly warring to gain the ascendancy, but a firm
reliance upon the sweet blessings and leading of the Holy Spirit will give the
soul victory in the righteous Way. If we are obsessed with the false and
dimming lights of the world, the greater and eternal Light of Heaven will be
obscured just as it was to the Wise Men who were blinded to the Star of
Bethlehem when they entered the dimly-lit gates of Jerusalem. Consider the
matter logically: is it possible to go UP, and to go DOWN, at the same time? Is
it possible to love God and His great enemy at once? Can you prize
righteousness above all while harboring wicked thoughts in one’s heart?
Let our master be single, and let that Master be the sweet and loving Teacher
of Galilee – the Lord Jesus Christ.
Are we anxious of tomorrow? Who owns tomorrow? Is it not God Almighty? If He is
your Lord, you need not worry of provisions for the day. He has furnished
our abode for our comfort and shelter, He has prepared the Bread of Heaven for
our sustenance, and He has woven a white and silken Robe for our covering. What
profit is in worrying? Will simple worry change any outcome in the slightest?
Our Lord was driven into the Wilderness to suffer the trials and temptations of
the devil. He went without food that we might be fed. He went without drink
that we might have the full cup of His blessings. He vanquished the Devil in
the Wilderness of this world. Why do we linger in longing looks back to that
Wilderness of sin? 25 “Therefore I say
unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall
drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than
meat, and the body than raiment?” Is there not bread enough, and to
spare, in my Father’s House
? (Prodigal Son) We have been invited
to a sumptuous dinner at the House of the King. Shall we bring with us our
stale and molding bread of the earth when He has prepared the finest cuisine of
Heaven? Shall we lug along our waters from the poison fountain when He has provided
the pure Water of Life for our health? Perish the thought!
Jesus invites our attention to the provision God has made in nature for every
creature thereof. Does He not provide for them? What is the source of
nourishment to the young calf, the baby lamb, the frail, newborn pony? He has
provided a means in nature for each of these to prosper in health and
nutrition. It is an unbroken source of plenty. 26 “Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do
they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye
not much better than they?”
I often wonder where the sparrow
goes when the clouds burst open in a deluge. They return in joy to the trees
after the rain. Where did they hide from the tempest? They depended upon the
protection and care of God unseen to our eyes. They do not worry about harvest
and sowing, yet they prosper according to God’s perfect plan. A sparrow is of
much less value to God than the crowning achievement of His Creation – Man. So
why do we worry so that the provision will fail, and we shall perish for want
of food, clothing, or shelter?
We are created in the image of God. Why should we mar that image by tattooing
our persons or, more importantly, our souls, with deviant marks and vulgar
signs? Can we make ourselves larger than God has made us? Perhaps so if you
consider immoderate diet and obesity to be growth. But God has made us to be
like unto our Maker. Our only growth can take place when we grow more like Him
by surrendering our free wills and taking upon ourselves the Mind and Will that
is Christ’s. 27 “Which of you by taking
thought can add one cubit unto his stature?
” Rather than
enlarge ourselves by effort, we grow smaller. Only when we allow God to grow
our hearts, minds and bodies may we grow in love and grace.
Our world today is filled with stress and anxiety. Men’s hearts fail them for
looking for the things coming upon the earth. Reason teaches us that 95% of
those things that occupy our anxious minds in worry never come to pass. So the
worry was only a ruse of the devil to distract our hearts and to shorten our
lives. 28 “And why take ye thought for
raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not,
neither do they spin: 29 And yet I say
unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of
the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not
much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?
” Lilies are
beautiful beyond measure, yet, despite our art, the only lilies we can create
are unloving ones. But God clothes them, not only with beauty, but with
exuberant life! A dead body can be decorated with silken robes to no avail for
it remains dead. But God clothes the Lily better than Solomon was able to
clothe himself, and the life God gave the Lily is an innate characteristic of
His grace to the smallest of creatures. The grass is giving raiment suitable
for its living, yet, it has only a short span to run, and is trodden under
foot, withers, and is blown away by the wind. Do you worry that the same God
who provides for the sparrow, the Lily, and the grass of the fields cannot
provide for you whose value far exceeds all these? The soul of man is eternal
whether destined for Heaven or Hell, whereas sparrows, grass, and lilies exist
only for the present as robes of beauty to cover the earth. Is our faith so
small that we cannot acknowledge the care of God sufficient for our
So what counsel does our Lord provide for our frailty and doubts? 31 “Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or,
What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for
your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.
If the Christian son or daughter goes about worrying, just as do those who do
not know God, of what advantage is there to being a son or daughter of God.
Does a prince or princess concern themselves for their basic provisions in
life? Is our Father, and King of Kings, not able to supply all things according
to His “riches in glory
?” Do we believe that God is unable to see
our need? Perhaps we see only our DESIRES, but God sees our NEED!
We need not concern ourselves with any worldly concerns if we place God first
in all our thoughts, words, and deeds. If our priority in all things is God and
His will, we will have no time left for worry and vain pursuits. Our Lord gives
solution to all our problems with His concluding counsel for today’s text:
33 “But seek
ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall
be added unto you. 34 Take therefore no
thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of
itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof
.” To those of you who timidly subordinate
your duties to God to your perceived obligations to the state and society,
Jesus draws a clear line in the sand: We do not seek to please governments or society
in politically correct philosophies, but GOD! His will is paramount over every
earthly power be it the US Government, or any other government. We observe a
hierarchy of government from God above every other government. In America, we
have local, state and Federal laws. Does not the ultimate power predominate in
law? And even in the Federal Government, we have a separation of powers that
must be observed so that not entity has absolute power even at the Federal
head. But God is the ultimate Law-Giver. His law takes precedence above every
law of man. Too many believers today have bought into the lie of a separation
of church and state. What does that mean? Does it mean that religious morality
cannot influence the state, or even be mentioned in reference to it; or that
the state can dictate every detail of religious faith. If the Christian faith
is not the basis of government, then the government will intrude and be the
arbiter of the Christian faith…simple as that! God will provide ALL that we
need as long as we acknowledge Him above and beyond every other consideration.
There is great evil in our present day. We must address the enemy at
hand rather than occupy ourselves with contemplated enemies that may arise
tomorrow. The world is WICKED today. The only day we are assured in this life
is TODAY. Go forth to battle that enemy of our souls that presents itself at
the leading edge of battle and worry not of the enemy’s reinforcement for
tomorrow. If we win the current battle, there will be no wickedness to
reinforce. Fight today, and take in hand the new threat as it presents itself.
God is with the valiant and true servant to fight his battles for him. Stand
with God and no lesser power can approach. 33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness;
and all these things shall be added unto you. 34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow
shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the
What are your
priorities for today? Are your first awakening thoughts devoted to God and in
seeking His will for you TODAY? Or do you give space in your heart to needless
worries that steal the space in your heart that should be reserved to God? Do
you seek after righteousness and let the results fall where they will? If you
place your trust in the only One who can order not only your life, but your
soul, you will be in good Hands for certain. Do not make your intentions of
righteousness dependent upon tomorrow’s events. Do what is right, and God will see
to the rest! He is the great Captain of your soul, not society, not Mammon, and
not government. When you approach the White Throne at the conclusion of all
time, will you concern yourself with rulings of the Supreme Court, or acts of
Congress? You may trust me – they shall not present themselves at that Holy
A Sermon By Bishop James P.
Dees, Founder of The Anglican Orthodox Church
morning I would like for us to think for a little while about the Church--the
meaning of the church, the significance of the Church, the purpose of the
the Church? What are the
functions, the duties, of the Church?
What are the duties of the members of the Church? What are the distinguishing marks of
the true Church, its identifying characteristics by which it is
recognized? What is the
relationship of the Church with the Son of God? On what is the Church based?
our Lord was on earth, there was no formal organization of the Church. Our Lord made only two references to
the Church recorded in Scripture.
One was on the occasion of St. Peter's confession at Caesarea Philippi
when he said to Jesus, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living
God"; and Jesus replied to him, "Thou art
Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall
not prevail against it
And the other statement that He made was, "If
your brother sin against you, tell it to the church.
the Church? The word for
"church" in the Greek language is "ecclesia" which
translated means "the called out ones" or the "ones called
together," called to follow Jesus.
interesting to note that when our Lord was on earth He did not found a church
organization as such, except to appoint leaders for it, the Apostles. With the Apostles as leaders, He
founded a fellowship. He founded a fellowship of believers, of which He was the
center. He was its foundation, its
leader, its life. The early church
was a small group of Christians, a community of believers, called out of the
world to witness to Jesus with selected leaders, the twelve Apostles, selected
by our Lord Himself.
the Church primarily is a fellowship of believers in Jesus, bound together by
their faith in Jesus, bound together by and in the Spirit of God under the leadership
of the ones chosen by Christ Himself.
creeds tell us the Church through the ages has had, and still has, four chief
distinguishing marks or characteristics.
These four chief distinguishing marks or characteristics of the historic
Church came to be recognized during the first four hundred years of the
Church's history. We find them in
our Apostles' and Nicene creeds.
We in the Anglican Orthodox Church claim these distinguishing marks for
ourselves. And we are the only
church in the world that can.
These distinguishing marks of the Church tells us the Church is one,
holy, catholic, and apostolic. Let
us look at these distinguishing marks for a little bit.
of all, the creeds tell us the Church is
. The Church is one. In the Offices of Instruction in
the Prayer Book, we are told it is one body under one head. It is one because it is united under
one head, the Lord Jesus. It looks
to Him as Saviour and Redeemer. We
put our trust in Him as one Lord.
Since there is but one Christ Jesus, and since there is but one body of
Christ's teaching, we are all of one mind and one heart as we accept Him,
believe in Him, dwell in Him, and serve Him. The true Church is the believing body of Christ in the
world. Wherever Jesus is accepted
as the Son of God and Saviour, there is one of the distinguishing marks of the
true Church. The Church is one in
we say that the Church is Holy
. In the Offices of Instruction we are
told that it is holy because the Holy Spirit dwells in it and sanctifies its
members. The true Church of Jesus
considers itself to be a holy fellowship set apart from the world, to worship
and to witness to the divine truths of God. The Church is holy because Christ is holy, because God is
holy, and God dwells in His Church in His Spirit and sanctifies it. And the Church is made holy as it seeks
communion with God through Jesus, and it is holy because God fills it with His
Spirit of holiness on account of our faith in Jesus. In the 19th
Chapter of the Book of Leviticus, God
spoke to Moses and said, "Ye shall be holy; for I, the Lord your God, am
holy." And again in the 10th
chapter, speaking through Moses, He said, "By those near me I must be treated
as holy, that I may reveal myself (through them) to the people at large." We are called to live in God's Spirit
of Holiness, in order that the world around us may see something of His
Holiness, and goodness, and glory, and may be drawn by Him. We who are saved by Christ are called
to be Holy to the Lord, to give ourselves to Him so that He may sanctify us
with His Spirit of holiness and purity and infinite love and mercy. St. John tells us in his first Epistle,
"Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him
and he in God." And God is
holy, and He makes us Holy.
third identifying mark of our Church is
that it is catholic
catholic we mean universal, which is the basic meaning of the. It means that the Gospel message which
the Church proclaims is UNIVERSAL, for all men throughout all time. It applies to everyone, everywhere,
forever. It does not mean that we
are Roman Catholic, for we are more catholic than are the Roman Catholics. The Roman Catholics have perverted
Biblical truth with their errors and church traditions which they accept and
teach contrary to Scripture and the teachings of Jesus. As the Reformers said when the Church
of England broke from Rome, "If it is not Scriptural, it is not
catholic." We are Scriptural,
and therefore truly catholic.
are meant to be the children of the father; all men are sinners; and the saving
grace and power made available by the life and death of our dear Lord is
intended for them all, for Jesus died for every one. St. Paul writing to St. Timothy said, "God will have all
men to be saved," but in order to be saved, they must hear the Gospel
message, they must repent, they must accept Jesus as their saviour, and follow
Him and serve Him.
The Church is
described as One, Holy,
Catholic; and it is also Apostolic
because, as the Prayer Book says, "It continues steadfastly in the
Apostles' teaching and fellowship."
Our Church is descended from the Apostles of our Lord. It is descended from them in its teach
and its doctrine as well as from them personally by the "laying on of
hands" from Bishop to Bishop, through the ages, through the
centuries. The consecrated bishops
of our Church have received authority through an unbroken chain of
consecrations that goes back to the Apostles themselves, begun when St.
Matthias was consecrated by the Apostles to succeed the traitor, Judas
Iscariot, who betrayed our Lord and went out and hanged himself. We receive our ecclesiastical authority
from the Apostles, who were sent forth into the world by Jesus, the Son of God.
other bishops and I of this Church are burdened, therefore, with both the
authority and responsibility from God, from Christ, and from the Apostles
themselves to proclaim the ancient faith, to preserve Biblical morality, the
moral law revealed in the Scriptures.
We are burdened with the responsibility and authority by our
consecration vows to drive out of the Church "all erroneous and strange
doctrine," heresy, and to drive out of it those in the Church who would
destroy it, who would pervert the Church, its witness, its message of
salvation, and its godly heritage.
true Church of Christ has always been a fellowship bound together. From its beginning it has been a
fellowship bound closely together, bound by common ties and bonds. The basic bond has been Jesus himself,
His Spirit, His power, His love, His truth. When we sense within us the overpowering truth manifested in
His Life and death, utterly consecrated to God for us, committing Himself
finally, in the Garden of Gethsemane to the excruciating agony on Calvary for
us, then we surrender to Him; His utter devotion to God for us compels us to.
bound together also by the joy that we experience together in Jesus, by the joy
that comes to those who delight in doing our Saviour's will. They know that He loves them, and
therefore they love Him, and one another.
bound together in the Church in our common faith. St. Paul tells the saints in Galatia, "we are all the
children of God on account of our faith in Jesus Christ." We are bound together by our faith in
God who has shown Himself to us in the Holy Trinity, as God the Father, God the
Son, and God the Holy Ghost. In
our Faith, we acknowledge one way of Salvation, the Way of the Cross, the Way
of the Lamb slain for the sins of the world. And we all look forward in one faith to the future glory
that is to come, the glory of the coming Kingdom of Heaven, to the glory of the
coming of Jesus, whom EVERYONE shall meet some day, face to face, some as their
blessed Redeemer, and some as their implacable judge.
belong to the Church are bound together by a further bond; we are bound
together by a common task. We
receive passed on to us the commission which our Lord gave to his disciples: "Go ye
into all the world and peach the gospel to every creature.
" We to whom the grace has been given to
belong to the body of Christ have as our solemn obligation and responsibility
the task of spreading the Gospel message.
We must carry Christ's teaching to the frontiers, and there are
frontiers everywhere; there are frontiers for Christianity in Asia and Africa,
in Europe and in the Americas; there are frontiers here in the United States,
especially here in the United States, here in our own state, here in
Statesville or Rocky Mount or wherever we are. There are frontiers for Christianity in our government, in
our business lives, and in our home lives that call for the Spirit of Jesus;
and there are frontiers also within our own selves. Wherever the Spirit of God is found, and wherever Christians
are found, there are frontiers for them to bring the Gospel message to, against
the powers of ignorance and immorality, against plain laziness and indifference
to Spiritual things, against hatred and malice in the hearts of people, even in
indifference to Spiritual things, against hatred and malice in the hearts of
people, even in many who consider themselves to be Christians, and even in
me. There are frontiers against
the corrosive temptation of pharisaism--that a person is good enough to merit
for himself of himself, the Kingdom of God. We recall the Pharisee's remark, "God, I thank thee
that I am not as other men are," and the publican's words, "God be
merciful to me a sinner." We
remember words of St. John in his First Epistle, "If we say that we have
no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us." We are bound together by a common task,
the spreading of Christ's kingdom--at home and everywhere, and each one of us
shares in this task. Our task is
to live and to give that the world may see something of Christ in us, and be
drawn to Him, and find salvation.
the work of the Church also to serve the needs of man, as did our Lord. We seek to feed those who are hungry
for God as well as any deserving poor who may be hungry for food. We seek to feed those who are lonely,
who are hungry for Christian fellowship in which they may live joyfully,
triumphantly in the Spirit of Jesus, in the Christian community, in the love of
have the common duty to live and to work, to pray and to witness day by day for
the advancement of God's Kingdom.
But we cannot do this effectively by ourselves as individuals. We can do it effectively only with the
Spiritual help that comes from heaven, from God in Christian fellowship in His
Church. We can do it only with the
moral and spiritual support that we give to one another in Christian
fellowship. Truly our help and
strength for living the spiritual life come from God; and He gives this to us
as we worship Him together in mutual love and forbearance in the Name of
Jesus. Both the Bible and Prayer
Book tell us this plainly: we can
do no good things of ourselves. We
seek to build God's Kingdom here and now, both in the world and within our own
hearts; and as we seek to build, we must do it together, bowing down before Him
and offering ourselves to Him, a holy sacrifice to His Glory together.
believe in Jesus, and who love Him and who love one another, are God's children
now, saved, redeemed by His blood.
We know the joy of walking with Him, serving Him, and we worship Him --
faithfully, gladly, by His grace.
And we pray that our lives may show, through our words, and through our
deeds, and through the Spirit of the love of God in us, that we are in
communion with our heavenly Father--working and worshipping in God's House, and
at work and at home, seeking to manifest something of the love of God, that
fills our hearts with joy. We
would live so that the world may see a bit of Christ Jesus in us and be drawn
to him. We would seek to be apprehended
by the holiness of God and, listening to his voice, do his will. God speaks to his children; He gives to
us His laws, His ethics of perfection which no man can live up to, and He tells
us of His mercy and forgiveness available to us through the blessed Cross!
But we cannot, we must not, we dare not, stop
with concern for ourselves. We
must lead others to Jesus, or die ourselves stagnated. We would lead people to pray as our
Saviour led men to pray; our lives must be incentives to others to seek a living
relationship with God through His Son.
As we go about during the week, we should rejoice in witnessing as a
member of God's true Church, redeemed by the blood shed on Calvary, a member of
a holy fellowship. We must be
conscious of the fact that we are witnesses day by day of the Faith we
profess--the Christian Faith, the Hope of the World.
faithful ones in the Church, who are committed to doing His will are the
redeemed children of the Lamb, the Lamb of God slain on the Cross for the sins
of the world. And we in the Church
look forward confidently, full of hope and assurance, for the continual coming
of the Kingdom of the Spirit of God into our own lives now, and we look forward
to the fullness of joy that shall be ours, in communion with all His saints,
with all of our loved ones in Heaven, forever, some day.
the Church is Christ's body--the whole Church--Bishops, Priests, Deacons, Laity
- all of us. The whole membership
of the Church is Christ's body of believers, and all of us are responsible to
Him--made free in Him, made free by Him.
We are the members of the one Body of which Jesus Christ is the Head:
The Holy Ghost is our sanctifier, keeper, life.
Dennis Campbell’s Sermon
Bishop Dennis is a brilliant
speaker. He is able to take
biblical precepts and make them perfectly understandable, even to me. Oft he provides the text of his sermons
and I take the utmost pleasure in passing them on:
Psalm 130, Galatians 6:11-17, Matthew 6:24-34
Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity
heart of today’s message is found in Galatians 6:14; “God forbid that I should
glory save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
glory in Christ? First let’s talk about what it means to glory. It
is-to boast in or count on something to give you standing and respect among
others. It is to consider something as earning your place in a community
or organisation, as making you worthy of acceptance, honour, or elevated status
specifically talking about something that earns a place for us in Heaven, a
place for us in that great Mansion of Mansions and at the great marriage feast
of the Lamb. He is talking about something we can glory in because it
makes us worthy of the honours of Heaven.
not glory in our good works? Why not trust them to earn our place with
God? Let me give two good reasons. First good works cannot cancel
our sins. Yes, you are a sinner. We read the Ten Commandments at
the very beginning of the service this morning. They are God’s standards
for your life. They are what God requires of you. They are God’s
will for your life. Every time you break one you commit a crime against
the Great King and Ruler of all things. And, as we saw in our evening
readings in the Gospel of Matthew last week, it is not enough to keep the
letter of the law. God requires that we keep the spirit of the law also,
and that we keep it perfectly. Who among us will claim to have done that?
Are we not all rather able to say with the Apostle Paul, “all have sinned,” and
with the publican, “Lord have mercy on me, a sinner?” In a short while,
just moments before we come to the Communion Rail, we will pray in unison a
prayer called the “General Confession.” We will pray it aloud, in an
audible voice, for all to hear. If you are physically able, kneel before
God and pray it on your knees, and say with the rest of us sinners; “Almighty
God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Maker of all things, Judge of all men; We
acknowledge and bewail our manifold sins and wickedness, Which we, from time to
time, most grievously have committed, By thought, word, and deed, Against thy
Divine Majesty.” Confess to God, and all humanity that you have sinned
against God. But first, confess it to yourself. You have sinned,
and do not deserve the good things God has blessed you with. You have
sinned, and have not earned Haven by your good deeds, but Hell by your sins.
Glory not in your works, no matter how good they may seem to you and other
people, to Christ they are filthy rags. Glory not in them. Glory in
Christ who bore your sins and died for them on the cross.
glory not in your own works because even your best works are tarnished and
tainted by sin. What is the very best, most honorable thing you have ever
done? Think of it for a moment. Now compare it to the absolute,
perfect goodness of Christ. Does not His perfection reveal the flaws and
cracks even in your very best deed? It is hard to imagine, but the sun in
our solar system has dark spots on it. Its light is uneven. Think
of light as a symbol for moral perfection, and listen to these words. From 1
John 1:5. “God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all.” Now listen to
the words of James 1:17, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, and cometh
down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of
turning.” Both of these verses are saying God is absolute perfect light,
meaning moral and personal perfection. He has every attribute of
goodness. He is wisdom, justice, truth, love, knowledge, mercy, and
He is all of these things in perfection. There is no variation in his
perfection; there is no shadow or turning in Him, forever. So even
what we consider to be our very best and most righteous deeds and attributes
are really just filthy rags compared to the absolute perfect goodness of God.
None of our works measure up to the standard of His perfection, and what ever
does not measure up cannot earn us a place in Heaven. In fact, it
disqualifies us. We may think water that is guaranteed 99.99%pure is good
enough for us, but God only accepts people who are 100% pure
trust religion? Why not trust going to church and doing all the religious
things? That’s what Paul’s detractors trusted, and they claimed that was
all anyone needed to please God. “Become a Jew and keep all the ceremonies
and sacrifices, they claimed,” and you will be right with God. To them,
circumcision symbolized all the rituals and ceremonies.
after time God makes the point that the ceremonies without the heart are
anathema to Him. He said to Israel, “this people draw near me with their
mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from
me” (Is. 29:13). “I delight not in the blood of bullocks and goats.”
“Bring me no more vain oblations… the new moons and Sabbaths, the calling of
assemblies… it is iniquity.” Your new moons and your appointed feasts my
soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them” (cf. Is.
1:10). Anyone can sacrifice a lamb. Anyone can say a prayer.
Anyone can eat the Passover meal. And you can do these things with no
real love or concern for God. But God hates it if your heart is not in
this in modern terms we might say anyone can come to church. Anyone can
get a little water on them. Anyone can receive a little bread and wine.
But going to church is not necessarily the same as worshiping God.
Getting wet is not necessarily the same as being baptized. Eating a
communion wafer and taking a sip of wine is not necessarily the same as
receiving Holy Communion. Performing the outer actions without meaning
them in your heart does not please God. They insult Him. They
express the idea that God is so stupid He can be appeased by a few insincere
words and rituals. They express the idea that God is not important enough
to care about Him or mean what you say to Him. And God is rightly
.insulted by such arrogance. Hear what He says about those who receive
communion without really seeking God in Biblical faith; “he that eateth and
drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself.” Strong
words; words that make us want to examine our selves before we come to the Lord’s
our glory is in Christ alone. It is not in what we have done, but in what
He has done. He came to earth and lived as a man, without special
treatment. He suffered all the sorrows and temptations of life, but
sinned not. And finally, He went to the cross bearing our sins in Himself
and paying the price of our forgiveness. This is what the Lord’s Supper
is all about. As we gather here today we gather in memory of Him, and
that great sacrifice that made us right with God. He alone could do it.
My own actions have caused only wrath and condemnation. His have caused
peace and restoration. God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross
of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto
Anglican Orthodox Church Diocese of Virginia
Holy Trinity Anglican Orthodox Church
Rev Rick Reid of
Saint Peter’s Sunday Sermon
We are happy to have a
sermon from Reverend Rick Reid, minister of Saint Peter’s, whose congregation
is right at the Worldwide Headquarters of the Anglican Orthodox Church. Rev Rick has all the resources and challenges
right at hand. I think you will
enjoy his sermon.
In this morning’s Gospel reading we hear Jesus touching on many
different subjects. Jesus reminds
us of a universal truth. You can
only have ONE master, if think you have two, one will take the primary position
in the end; no one can be successful in serving two masters.
You must make a choice: God or Satan.
Satan? He has many names,
The Prince of this World comes to mind.
If you choose to serve Jesus, you must put Him first in everything.
Jesus tells us: Ye cannot serve God
and mammon. Mammon is a Chaldee or Syriac word
meaning "wealth" or "riches"; also, by personification, the
god of riches.
We like to think of money as our
servant, something that will work for us.
We think money
gives us security, status, comfort, and power. After all, money is my servant isn’t it? Money makes
me a master doesn’t it?’ No it does not. Whenever we put our trust
in money to save us, we follow money into slavery, and it becomes our God, as
does anything we put ahead of our Lord.
Jesus also taught us in St. Matthew’s Gospel: 21 For where your
treasure is, there will your heart be also. Matthew
Then He tells us: But
seek ye first his kingdom, and his righteousness and all these things shall be
added unto you.
Lord knows most of His people spend the majority of their lives toiling for
food, clothing, housing and the basic essentials of this physical
He draws a comparison with this effort of providing the necessities of life to
the necessity of putting forth an even greater effort to obtain the kingdom of
God and his righteousness.
Remember, all God ever asks is that we do our
very best. But that is to do it,
not just to say we are doing it.
How does your effort compare to your Lord's instruction?
What is the most important thing in your life TODAY? Are you doing all you can do to find the
kingdom of God and his righteousness? We are here today, and that is a start in the right
direction. But, it will take more than attending worship services, to enter
into the kingdom that the Lord has provided for us.
It is the Holy Spirit who convicts you of sin. It is the Holy Spirit who
convinces you to repent of sin. It is the Holy Spirit who teaches you how to
break free from the bondage of sin. As you obey the Holy Spirit He teaches you
to live holy. That is why He is the Holy Spirit. He is Holy. He leads to holiness. Holiness is a separation from the
things of this world. Sin is a
separation from God. Two
separations, one good, one bad.
You don't find peace by committing sin. Sin brings grief and heartache.
Right doing brings peace.
The Holy Spirit inspires and empowers you to live right. You can have
this kingdom of peace within you by repenting of sin and accepting Jesus Christ
as your Lord and Saviour.
John the Baptist and Jesus told us in: Matthew’s Gospel 3:1-2 3
In those days
came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judæa, 2
and saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of
heaven is at hand.
Both John and our Lord began their ministries with the message that the
kingdom of God was at hand and the way to get into it was to repent.
Jesus told us in: Luke’s Gospel: 16:16
law and the prophets were until John
since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.
Matthew 12:28 28 But if
I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that
whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John
3:16 Jesus’ one sacrifice, one
time, for all mankind, for all time to account us as perfect has made the
Kingdom of God available to us.
Yes, we are eligible for entry into the kingdom of God. That is, we
who have repented of our sins, and have received Christ as our Lord and
Saviour, have received it.
Now, we need to continue to serve God with reverence and godly fear.
God is our heavenly father and we honor Him as such. He loves us and we love
Him because He first loved us. He has provided us with this wonderful Kingdom
of righteousness, peace, and joy.
God is calling you today unto His kingdom. The kingdom of God is a
spiritual kingdom. It is an experience of complete salvation that enables you
to live a more righteous life in this present world. Everyone is invited.
The kingdom is being preached and every one that wants to can press
into it today.
The kingdom of God is not a kingdom of this world. It is a spiritual
kingdom of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Ghost.
You too can receive this wonderful deliverance from sin and obtain
everlasting life, by repenting of your sins and accepting Jesus Christ as your
Lord and Saviour.
You will then receive the peace that passes all understanding, which
will enable you to serve only one master, the one true God of the world.
To the only wise God our Saviour be glory and majesty, dominion and
power.; both now and ever. Amen
Rev Bryan Dabney
of Saint John’s Sunday Sermon
We are fortunate to
have Bryan’s Sunday Sermon. If you
want people to come to The Truth, you have to speak the truth, expouse the
truth and live the truth. This is really a good piece and I
commend it to your careful reading.
Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity
In our epistle lesson for today, the apostle Paul penned the thoughts
of God regarding the quest for riches when wrote, 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 (I St.
Timothy 6:9-10). It is one thing to earn a living in order to care and provide
for oneself and one’s family; but it is an entirely different thing to pursue
wealth — riches — for the sole purpose of gratifying the lusts of the flesh.
Years ago when I was teaching school, one of my students — who was a
comedian — engaged in a humorous play on words regarding “money and power”
which I will paraphrase: “Mr. Dabney, I have the two things which most people
want: money and power.” In the process of enunciating those two points, he
opened his hands to reveal a quarter in one and a AA battery in the other. In
reality, he was making light of an actual problem within our society and our
world. The quest for wealth and power has driven more people into a state of
existence that is the polar of opposite of what they had in mind when they set
out to secure for themselves those things.
Look at what great wealth did to King Solomon. God gave him more than
he could have ever desired but this led him into vanity and pridefulness (I
Kings 10:24-29; 11:1-13). Look at what the power and wealth of King David did
for him. Was it not in his idle moments that he spied his subordinate’s wife
bathing and took her for himself even going so far as to have that man killed
in battle (II Samuel 11:1-27; 12:1-23)?
Great wealth can produce a state of mind which elevates the possessor’s
opinion of himself so that he or she then becomes the author of those good
things rather than a recipient of them. Instead of giving credit to God, these
will take the credit for themselves. They will mark it off to good fortune or
luck, or maybe even to their own acumen, but they will not mention him who made
it all possible: the God of all creation.
Consider the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, who said, Lay not up for
yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt and, and
where thieves break in and steal: but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven
... for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also (St. Matthew
6:19-21). And in another place our Lord spoke about the garnering of wealth
without giving God any consideration when he said, Take heed and beware of
covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things
which he possesseth (St. Luke 12:15).
The Rev. Matthew Henry once noted concerning this passage that, “Covetousness
is a sin which we have constant need to watch against, and therefore frequently
to be warned against. Our happiness and comfort do not depend upon our having a
great deal of wealth of this world. The things of this world will not suit the
nature of a soul, nor supply its needs, nor satisfy its desires. Many who have
abundance are discontented and fretful, and then what good does their abundance
do them?” How true to the mark was Rev. Henry’s comment. The pursuit of wealth
and power will lead a person inevitably into the pit of perdition as the
apostle Paul so noted, But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a
snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction
The parable of the rich fool is another example of how
wealth-for-wealth’s- sake will result in separation from God and his kingdom.
Our Lord told this parable because a certain fellow had come to him desiring
his help in acquiring wealth from a family member (St. Luke 12:13-21). Via this
simple story, our Lord informed us that those whose sole purpose in life is to
selfishly gather unto themselves have become fools in God’s eyes. As Matthew
Henry observed, “Carnal people are fools, and the day is coming when God will
call them by their own name, and they will call themselves so ... The great
absurdity which the children of this world are guilty of is that they portion
their souls in the wealth of the world and the pleasure of sense.” How much
sorrow there will be in the day of judgment for those who had made their life’s
work about nothing more than acquiring and holding great wealth and power to
satisfy their lusts. Where will their riches be then? Are they able to pay God
for the cost of their lives (Psalm 49:1-20)?
This life is tenuous and temporary. And as we do not know the hour of
our deaths, the thoughtful Christian will prepare himself to meet the Lord at
any time. In our prayer book on page 591, there is a portion of Evening Family
Prayer which states in part, “. . . And grant us grace always to live in such a
state that we may never be afraid to die; so that, living and dying, we may be
thine, through the merits and satisfaction of thy Son Christ Jesus . . .” How
many fellow Christians cannot in all honesty pray this prayer because they are
so unprepared to meet the Lord if he came for them at this moment? And what
about the untold millions of the unregenerated who care nothing for God and his
Christ and who daily live as if there is no tomorrow? No doubt, when God comes
for them, they will have no further opportunities to turn and repent. And all
their pleas at the great white throne judgment will not be accepted.
In his sermon entitled Sinners in the hands of an angry God, New
England pastor Jonathan Edwards noted that, “God has laid himself under no
obligation, by any promise to keep any natural man out of hell one moment ...
So that, whatever some have imagined and pretended about promises made to
natural men’s earnest seeking and knocking, it is plain and manifest, that
whatever pains a natural man takes in religion, whatever prayers he makes, till
he believes in Christ, God is under no manner of obligation to keep him a
moment from eternal destruction.”
The Rev. Dr. D. James Kennedy once noted that, “If the Bible teaches
anything at all, it is that there is an everlasting too late — that there will
come a moment when it will be eternally too late, when the door of grace will
have slammed shut forever. Then the sinner would give the universe itself for
just one minute to repent and turn to Jesus Christ.” The selfish and the
arrogant, as well as the idolater and the sensual will all have their place in
the lake of fire because they refused to recognize the true nature of God and
receive his gift of grace in Christ.
Nebuchadnezzar once praised himself for all that he had built and
labored to perform as if he had done everything on his own and without any
assistance and blessing from God. Daniel recorded the king’s own words
regarding his works: Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for the house
of the kingdom by the might of my power, and for the honour of my majesty?
While the word was in the king’s mouth, there fell a voice from heaven, saying,
O king Nebuchadnezzar, to thee it was spoken; The kingdom is departed from
thee. And they shall drive thee from men ... (Daniel 4:30-32).
Later, after his senses had been returned to him, the king related, And
at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and
mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised
and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting
dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation. And all the
inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his
will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none
can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou (Daniel 4:34-35)?
Nebuchadnezzar did indeed receive his kingdom back from the LORD after
which he added this final word, Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and
honour the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and his ways judgment:
and those that walk in pride he is able to abase (v.37). It is clear from
Daniel 4 that Nebuchadnezzar was disciplined of God and he later recognized the
error of his ways. He came to see that his life, as well as that of all mortals
upon this earth, was in the hands of the LORD and that everything he had
received came from God and God alone. He understood that all
self-aggrandizement was worthless and led to misery and heartache. He was
blessed in that God only disciplined him and did not totally cast him away. He
was abased before God and in his recognition of his sin, he was lifted up. In
the parable of the Pharisee and the publican, our Lord affirmed the same when
he said, ... for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that
humbleth himself shall be exalted (St. Luke 18:14).
Power and wealth tend to corrupt even the best of mortals as we have
seen. The idea that a person managed to obtain riches and authority can lead
one into the erroneous belief that said person got them of their own accord.
God gives to each person as he wills. If one has great wealth and power it is
because God permitted that person to possess such. The selfish tendencies of
unregenerate mankind will not give God the glory and praise for his gifts. That
is why the apostle Paul was given to pen the words of our lesson today: 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 (I St.
So should we not pray for resources to help us in our daily lives? Is
it wrong to desire to have a decent income and enjoy the pleasures that can be
derived from such? Again, consider the words of the apostle Paul who explained,
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 (I St. Timothy 6:6-9). While he called upon every
Christian to, Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and
supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God (Philippians
4:6); we must not permit our requests to be for the wrong things. We must not
ask amiss (St. James 4:3).
We close our services of Morning and Evening Prayer with “A Prayer of
St. Chrysostom” wherein we ask God to, “Fulfil now, O Lord, the desires and
petitions of thy servants, as may be most expedient for them; granting us in
this world knowledge of thy truth, and in the world to come life everlasting.
Amen.” When we ask God to grant to us what is “expedient” we are leaving it to
him to decide what is good for us and to supply us the same. So, any thing we
ask of God ought to be framed in that manner. And whatever we receive, we ought
to give God the glory and praise in thanksgiving for what he has done.
We all liked to be thanked when we do things for others and the same is
true for our Lord. Giving thanks and praise to God for his gifts should be on
our minds at all times. We should have constant thoughts of God’s hand in our
lives along with constant thoughts of thanks for his presence with us and in us
via the Holy Ghost.
The quest for wealth and power is not sanctioned by the Godhead. Those
who would set out to carve out a name for themselves at the expense of others
in order to garner riches, fame and power will be likened unto those who make
elegant castles of sand on the seashore. Until the tide comes in, they are
intact and may even be impressive to look at. But when the tide comes in, they
disappear as if they had never been there at all. Let us not place our faith in
the uncertainty of riches but in the living God, who giveth us richly all
things to enjoy . . . (I St. Timothy 6:17).
, keep us from the desire to serve mammon and
not thee; and that in all our prayers and petitions we would ask for those
things that are expedient and of good report; for this we ask in the name of
him who gave us the gift of eternal life via his once offering of himself for
us, even Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Have a blessed week, Bryan+
are we (the AOC) in communion with the Greater Anglican Communion?
By greater, that would be the
group of Anglicans centered on the “mother” church, the Church of England, from
which Anglicanism derives its name?
The answer in short, that is the Executive Summary, is that the members
of the Greater Anglican Communion are no longer Christians. For details, read Fifty Years of Anglican Liberalism – 5 September 2013
The worldwide Anglican Communion is composed of some 77 million
Anglicans in 164 countries, including the mother church, the Church of England,
and the Episcopal Church in America. It is permeated with theological
liberalism at every level.
In 1953, Archbishop of Canterbury William Temple, in his book Nature
, said, ... There is no such thing as revealed truth.
In 1960, Episcopalian Bishop James Pike said the doctrine of the
Trinity is outdated, incomprehensible and nonessential (The Christian Century
Dec. 21, 1960). (Billy Graham was a guest at Pikes ordination on May 15, 1958
and praised the liberal bishop in glowing terms. Nine days later, Graham
invited Pike to sit on the platform during his evangelistic crusade in San
Francisco and had him lead in prayer. On Dec. 4, 1960, Graham spoke in Pike’s
pulpit at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco.)
In 1961, Archbishop of Canterbury Michael Ramsey said, ... Heaven is
not a place for Christians only. ... I expect to see many present day atheists
there (London Daily Mail
, Oct. 2, 1961). That same year, Bishop James
Pike called the virgin birth of Christ a primitive myth and said that Joseph
was probably Jesus real father (Redbook
magazine, August 1961). He also
said that Adam and Eve, the Garden of Eden, heaven, and hell are myths. (Billy
Graham invited Ramsey to the platform during his 1975 crusade in Brazil and
allowed him to speak to the crowd. Fundamental Evangelistic Association News
, May-June 1975)
In 1963, Episcopal theologian Paul van Buren started the God-is-dead
movement with the publication of his book The Secular Meaning of the Gospel
That same year, Anglican Bishop John Robinson said in his book Honest to God
The whole scheme of a supernatural being coming down from heaven to save
mankind from sin ... Is frankly incredible to man come of age.
In 1967, after heresy charges were brought against Bishop James Pike,
the Episcopal Church in America adopted a resolution declaring that all heresy
was out of date. That year, Canon Hugh Montifiore of Cambridge Universitys main
church said, Jesus might have been a homosexual (Christianity Today
Aug. 18, 1967). (Montifiore was the advisor for the Cambridge Billy Graham
In 1968, the Church of Englands Lambeth Conference voted that Anglican
clergy are no longer required to agree to the denominations 39 articles of
In 1976, John Spong was ordained as the bishop of the Episcopal diocese
of Newark, New Jersey, even though he denied practically every doctrine of the
In 1977, Bishop Paul Moore of the Episcopal Cathedral of St. John the
Divine in New York City ordained lesbian Ellen Barrett as a priest. Barrett
magazine that her lesbian love affairs gave her the strength
to serve God.
In 1978, Anglican Bishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa said the Holy
Spirit shined through Mahatma Gandhi, who is a Hindu (St. Albans Cathedral,
Pretoria, South Africa, Nov. 23, 1978).
In 1980, Tutu said, It may be that Jesus was an illegitimate son (Cape
, Oct. 24, 1980).
In 1982, Archbishop of Canterbury Robert Runcie said he was an agnostic
as to why Jesus suffered on the cross (Sunday Times Weekly Review
London, April 11, 1982). That same year, Episcopal Bishop John Spong, writing
in the Christian Century
(Jan. 6-13, 1982), condemned traditional
evangelistic and missionary endeavors and said that biblical absolutism is a
vice. (Billy Graham was one of the honored guests at Runcies ordination in
March 1980, and Graham spoke highly of the liberal archbishop during his
evangelistic crusades in England in 1984 and 1989.)
In 1984, David Jenkins, Anglican Bishop of Durham, described Christs
resurrection as a conjuring trick with bones (English Bishop Calls Christs
Resurrection Conjuring Trick, AP, St. Louis Post Dispatch
, Oct. 28,
1984). Jenkins also said, The Christian is not bound up with freak biology or
corpses getting up and walking around and You don't have to believe in the
virgin birth. (On July 9, 1984, three days after Jenkins was consecrated
bishop, lightning struck his cathedral and caused extensive damage. A spokesman
for the fire brigade said that though the roof was fully wired with lightning
rods, none of them worked that morning; the smoke detectors in the ceiling did
not go off, even though they were tested only a month before; and there was no
thunder accompanying the lightning. EP News Service
, Dec. 21, 1984).
In 1984, the Associated Press reported that only 20 of 31 Church of
England bishops polled insisted that Christians must accept Jesus as both God
In 1985, the Jesus Seminar was founded with the help of Episcopalians,
including Marcus Borg of Oregon State University. The Seminar claims that Jesus
spoke only about 20% of the things attributed to him in the New Testament and
that the Jesus described in the Bible is largely a fiction. They claim he wasnt
born of a virgin, didnt walk on the water, didnt rise bodily from the dead, and
had no intention of starting a new Christian religion. They also claim that
there was no Jewish trial of Jesus before the crucifixion and the Jewish crowd
did not participate in his condemnation.
When Edmond Lee Browning was elected presiding bishop of the Episcopal
Church in September 1985, he made it clear that he disagrees with the churchs
official opposition to the ordination of practicing homosexuals (Religious News
Service, Sept. 11, 1985). He stated, I would sincerely hope the Episcopal
Church can say that there are no outcasts, but embrace all people and all
cultures. He was one of 20 bishops who signed a 1979 statement calling the
churchs position on gays a cruel denial of the sexual being of homosexual
persons and a condemnatory judgment that made them second-class citizens in the
In 1986, Anglican Bishop David Jenkins got a standing ovation from the
general synod of the Church of England when he defended his doubts about the
virgin birth and bodily resurrection of Christ (Associated Press, July 7,
1986). Jenkins called the God of the Bible a cultic idol (Ecumenical Press
Service, July 16-21, 1986).
In 1987, a panel of seven Episcopal bishops dismissed heresy charges
against Bishop John Spong.
In 1988, Spong published his book Living in Sin: A Bishop Rethinks
. He said, The time has surely come not just to tolerate, or
even to accept, but to celebrate and welcome the presence among us of our gay
and lesbian fellow human beings (p. 199). That year Spong visited a Buddhist
temple and said, As the smell of incense filled the air, I knelt before three
images of the Buddha, feeling that the smoke could carry my prayers heavenward.
It was for me a holy moment for I was certain that I was kneeling on holy
ground (A Dialogue in a Buddhist Temple, John Spong, The Voice
In January 1989, a committee composed of five Episcopal bishops
unanimously dismissed a second set of heresy charges that had been brought
against Bishop John Spong. Toward the end of that year, Spong ordained the
first openly practicing homosexual to the Episcopal priesthood. The man, Robert
Williams, was diagnosed with AIDS less than two years later.
According to Integrity, a pro-homosexual Episcopal group, at least 50
practicing homosexuals had been ordained to the priesthood by 1991.
In November 1991, John Spong conducted a seminar in Bangor,
Pennsylvania, entitled Exorcising Fundamentalism, Sexual Phobias and Other
In 1993, a survey of nearly 20,000 Episcopalians showed that seventy
percent believed faithful Christians can be sexually active gays and lesbians (Christian
, Nov. 1, 1993). Seventy-five percent approved of living with someone
of the opposite sex without marriage.
In 1994, it was reported by the Sunday Times
(July 31) in London
that at least 100 Anglican priests are atheists who do not believe in an
external, supernatural God.
In 1996, Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey lashed out at
fundamentalists who place the Bible above and beyond human inquiry (Christian
, Dec. 9, 1996). That same year, the doctrinal commission of the Church
of England said hell is not a place of fire and eternal torment. And Episcopal
Bishop John Spong wrote in his paper that the image of God in the Bible is no
longer operative (ENI, Dec. 6, 1996).
In 1997, a survey found that 31% of Anglican vicars in England do not
believe in the virgin birth (Alliance Life
, March 12, 1997). Actually
that figure would probably have been much higher had the survey attempted to
discover the number of vicars who believe in the virgin birth only in a figurative
In his 1991 book Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism
Episcopal Bishop John Spong said the apostle Paul was a self hating, repressed
homosexual. That year, Spong ordained another homosexual priest, Barry Stopfel.
Lesbian Episcopal priest Carter Heyward delivered the ordination sermon. When
Stopfels male lover was introduced, the audience applauded.
In 1998 Episcopalian Bishop John Spong said, I would choose to loathe
rather than to worship a deity who required the sacrifice of his son (Christianity
, June 15, 1998). That same year, retiring Episcopal Presiding Bishop
Edmond Browning said, It is time to move past using literalistic readings of
the Bible to create prejudices against our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters
, May 1, 1998).
In 2002, Richard Harries, Anglican Bishop of Oxford, said Christians
should pray to God the Mother (The Times
, Nov. 3, 2002). That same year,
retired Bishop Spong proposed a new Christianity, which must be able to
incorporate all of our reality. It must be able to allow God and Satan to come
together in each of us. ... It must unite Christ with Antichrist, Jesus with
Judas, male with female, heterosexual with homosexual (World
, July 8,
In April 2003, Episcopalian bishop Charles Bennison said that Jesus
Christ was a sinner (Worthy News
, April 14, 2003).
On June 7, 2003, the Diocese of New Hampshire elected the first openly
homosexual bishop in the history of the Episcopal Church USA. The election was
confirmed on August 5 by the General Convention meeting in Minneapolis.
Thirteen years ago the newly elected bishop, V. Gene Robinson, broke his
marriage vows when he left his wife and two young daughters and moved in with
his male partner, Mark Andrew. In a speech in April 29, 2000, the day before a
homosexual march in Washington, D.C., Robinson said: ... we are worthy to hold
our heads high as gay folk--NOT because weve merely decided we are worthy, but
because God has proclaimed it so. That we are loved beyond our wildest imagining
by a God who made us the way we are and proclaimed it good. We proclaim today
that we too read our Bibles, and through the voices of its many witnesses, we
hear Gods voice--NOT saying You are an abomination, but rather, You are my
beloved. We lay an equal claim to a savior who loves us as we are and who died
to save us from our manifold sins and wickedness, which does NOT include our
being gay. And we come here today, laying claim to our full membership--our
FULL membership--in the Body of Christ.
In June 2006, the national convention of the Episcopal Church in
America voted overwhelmingly against a resolution stating an unchanging
commitment to Jesus Christ as the son of God, the only name by which any person
may be saved. More than seven tenths of the House of Deputies rejected the
motion. One of those who voted against the resolution, a Rev. McDowell of North
Carolina, told VirtueOnline that how one lives his life is the more important
issue than whether one affirms Jesus as Lord and stated his conviction that all
men are already children of God.
The 2006 Episcopal convention was the one that elected the
ultra-liberal Katharine Jefferts Schori to be the presiding bishop for a
nine-year term. In her first sermon in that capacity she referred to our mother
Jesus, claiming that he gave birth to a new creation on the cross and implying
that all are his children. Later she told the Washington Post
who believe that the words of the Bible have only one possible interpretation
are guilty of idolatry. She said, Im encouraging people to look beyond their
favorite understandings (Douglas LeBlanc, Two Minds in One Episcopal Body, Christian
, vol. 29, no. 5, 2006).
At the same convention, Louie Crew and some other voting representatives
(called deputies) referred to the Holy Spirit as she. The homosexual bishop
Gene Robinson said the Holy Spirit is that part of God that refuses to be
confined and contained in the little boxes we have for God (Two Minds in One
Episcopal Body, Christian Research Journal
, vol. 29, no. 5, 2006). He
said, further, We dont worship a God who is all locked up in the Scripture of
2,000 years ago. He quoted John Fortunato, a homosexual author who claims that
God visited him and confirmed that homosexuality is fine if it is loving. He
said, God smiled and said quietly, How can loving be wrong? All love comes from
On September 14, 2008, the Church of England officially apologized to
Charles Darwin for rejecting his theory of evolution. It said: Charles Darwin,
200 years from your birth, the Church of England owes you an apology for
misunderstanding you and, by getting our first reaction wrong, encouraging
others to misunderstand you still (Church Makes Ludicrous Apology, The Daily
, Sept. 13, 2008). The statement was written by Malcolm Brown, who sits
on the Archbishops Council, the Church of Englands managing body, headed by the
Archbishop of Canterbury (Rowan Williams). Its argument that the theory of
evolution is not incompatible with Christian teaching is patently ridiculous.
The Bible plainly says that the world was created by God in six days, that the
plant and animal life was made to reproduce after its own kind, that man was
made in Gods image, that he sinned against God, and that the world was cast into
fallen chaos. This fits perfectly with the condition that we see in the world
today as well as the archaeological and geological records. If there was no
divine creation, if man is a product of evolution, then Genesis is a myth, the
fall is a fable, there is no purpose to life, no afterlife, and no salvation.
If the account of Adam is a legend, then Jesus Christs apostles were deceived
and the gospel they preached a delusion, because they mentioned Adam seven
times in their writings, describing him always as a historical figure.
On May 16, 2009, the bells of the Anglican Cathedral of Liverpool
pealed out John Lennons atheistic song Imagine three times on May 16. A
spokesperson for the cathedral said, We feel this performance has inspired many
people to think about their relationship with God in their lives (Imagine That,
The Daily Mail
, May 17, 2009). Indeed, as we have seen, many members of
the Anglican Church have no problem imagining with Lennon that there is no
heaven or hell. John Lennon was anti-christ. His book A Spaniard in the
portrayed Jesus as El Pifico, a garlic eating, stinking little
yellow, greasy fascist ****** Catholic Spaniard. In this wicked book, Lennon
further blasphemed the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In the song I Found Out,
Lennon sang, There aint no Jesus gonna come from the sky, and in his song God,
he said, I dont believe in Bible. I dont believe in Jesus. I just believe in
me. In an interview with a British newspaper Lennon defined God in these words:
All the energy is God. Your own energy and their energy, whether doing god-like
things or ungodly things (The Daily Sketch
, Oct. 9, 1967). Lennon and
Yoko Ono were heavily involved in occultism. The books Hellhounds on Their
by Gary Patterson, Nowhere Man: The Final Days of John Lennon
by Robert Rosen, and Lennon in America
by Geoffrey Giuliano describe how
the Lennons purchased entire sections of occult literature in bookstores,
consulted tarot cards, astrologers, and psychics, learned how to cast spells,
sought magical power from Egyptian artifacts, and believed in reincarnation.
Following a vote in May 2009 by the General Assembly of the Church of
Scotland to approve the appointment of a homosexual pastor, Desmond Tutu,
Anglican Bishop Emeritus of Cape Town, South Africa, voiced his approval saying
that churches should not be discussing who goes to bed with whom (Desmond Tutu
Endorses Homosexual Ministers, LifeSiteNews.com
May 29, 2009). The homosexual pastor, Scott Rennie, was ordained the pastor of
Queens Cross Church in Aberdeen in 2008, but his appointment was protested and
brought before the denominations ruling body. Like Vickie Gene Robinson, who
was ordained a bishop in the Episcopal Church of America in 2003, Rennie
divorced his wife to live carnally with a man. This is a double sin. First,
there is the sin of breaking ones solemn marriage vows before Almighty God.
Second, there is the sin of sodomy. Yet these men are so spiritually blind that
they claim to hold the moral high ground! (The Church of Scotland is not part
of the Anglican communion, but Tutu is.)
Scotland’s Equality and Human Rights Commission commented the Church of
Scotland has proven itself to be a modern church for a modern Scotland (OneNewsNow.com
, May 24, 2009). Indeed, it has, and it
has also proven itself to be an apostate religious harlot that loves this
present world more than Jesus Christ.
At its annual convention in 2012, the
Episcopal Church in America endorsed the blessing of same-sex unions and voted
in favor of transgender clergy (Rob Kerby, Why Is the Episcopal Church Near
, July 13, 2012). Presiding
Bishop Katharine Jeffferts Schori called God the Big Man.
Mammon - a Chaldee or
Syriac word meaning "wealth" or "riches" (Luke 16:9-11);
also, by personification, the god of riches (Matt. 6:24; Luke 16:9-11).
wealth regarded as an evil influence
(New Testament) a personification of wealth and avarice as an evil spirit.
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