Saturday, September 14, 2019

Meeting Together


Ronnie W. Wolfe – September 12, 2019

We meet on the shores of borrowed time
There to keep our souls in line
With the word of God with its ancient glow
To help our yearning hearts to grow.

Assembled with loved ones all aflame
With Gospel truth through Jesus’ name
With joy we sing the songs of Zion
And worship true the royal Lion.

The church of God will never fail,
Through generations weak and frail;
But with God’s purpose well in hand,
He keeps his watch across the land.

Assemblies true to God’s own word,
We preach the message greatest heard,
Knowing well we have the power,
Proclaiming truth from hour to hour.

The Spirit gave to his congregation
Approval for this dispensation,
For time until the Lord shall come
To do his work and take us home.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Just Beyond The Meadow

Dr. Ronnie Wolfe – June 14, 2019


Just beyond the meadow, just beyond the greenest grass,
Just beyond the flowing river; that’s where my soul shall pass.
From the shadow of the valley to the highest mountain peak,
I’ll travel, quickly travel, to a land all Christians seek.

I’m glad I did not falter when I heard the Gospel sound.
I’m glad by grace I trusted in the Savior that I found.
I’m happy that I turned around from sin to set me free
From the awful, fearful judgment on those who don’t believe.

Just beyond the meadow I will leave this world behind.
I will follow Jesus’ leading as he holds this hand of mine.
“Lead on,” I say, “to righteousness,” as only He can do.
You’re welcome in this promised land, by faith you may go, too.

So, take the time to trust Him, the Lord of all the earth.
He gives a message holy that brings a second birth.
You must believe in Jesus; God’s wrath is hard and fast.
Believe He died and came to life; He gives a life that lasts.

Now, look beyond the meadow, beyond the greenest grass,
Just beyond the flowing river; that’s where your soul shall pass,
If you truly trust in Jesus; He’ll forgive you of your sin;
And, when you’ve passed the meadow, He’ll surely greet you in.



Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Just Across The River

 By Ronnie W. Wolfe -- 5-21-2019
For funeral of Patricia Combs

Just across the river there’s a great, amazing place
Where people there reside by His amazing grace,
Where angels there attend the heavenly altar pure
And grace applies the salve of God’s eternal cure.

Just across the river of death so stained with earthly dread,
Victory reigns in heavenly realms through spirits of the dead.
Come thirsty souls and drink the blessings given from above,
And bask in heavenly sunlight and the wonder of God’s love.

Just across the river we leave the world behind
And shed the stress of everyday and hurts of every kind.
We wash our hands of all the pain and sorrow we once knew,
Now enjoying heavenly bliss and blessings not a few.

So, come, begin your journey now t’ward heaven’s open gate;
Trust that Jesus paid the price; trust him; don’t be late.
Parted saint are there, await our entrance to review,
As we by faith cross o’er the bar to where all things are new.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Every Religion Has A Book

By Dr. Ronnie Wolfe

Christianity Has A Book

We call our book The Bible. It is made up of 66 smaller books, which, we believe, have been inspired by God and that the Holy Spirit inspired men to write down what God wanted to be written, word for word, every word inspired to God's satisfaction.

This Bible is divided into two major parts, the Old Testament and the New Testament. The Old Testament is a testimony of God's covenant with Israel through God's law, which was given to Moses. If Israel kept the law, God would bless them and make them an everlasting kingdom; but, if they did not obey the law, God would judge them, and they would not inherit the spiritual home, a city whose builder and maker is God.

The New Testament is a testimony of the fulfillment of prophecies in the Old Testament which point to the person and work of Jesus Christ. Jesus lived during the period of the New Testament, and he fulfilled many prophecies of his coming, his growing up, his death, his burial, and his resurrection. Also, there are other prophecies in the New Testament of conditions in the world, societal conditions to expect as time goes on, and of future events that will culminate in Jesus' coming again and of the remaking of the earth to a perfect condition and a kingdom of peace forever.

In order to enjoy the benefits of the blessings given in the Bible, a person must read it and absorb its content and meaning as much as possible. God has many blessings for those who read it (See Revelation 1:3).

The Bible also teaches us through the grace of God how we should live, how we should conduct ourselves in society, what authorities to obey, and what our morals are. We should surrender our bodies (Romans 12:1) to the Lord, our minds (Philippians 2:5) and all of our members (Romans 6:13) as instruments of righteousness.


Cults And Other Religions Have A Book

Every cult has a book by which they learn and obey certain conditions and activities concerning their belief. There are many cults, but they all go by their own code of ethics, which is usually written in a book. Jehovah's Witnesses have their own translation of the Bible, Mormon's have their Book of Mormon and other books.

Judaism uses only the part of the Bible that we call the Old Testament. They do not call it this; they call their Bible "The Jewish Scriptures." This is simply the Old Testament without the New Testament. They study this book, learn this book, try to obey this book, and they love this book.

Buddhism has a book called Tripitaka, which is the sacred text for their beliefs. They revere these texts and study them. They teach them to their followers, and they practice what the texts teach.

Hindus have several texts called Vedas, and each text deals with a certain item in their belief system, which teaches the followers how to perform specific kinds of worship, mental attitude, and practice.

Islam has a book called Koran. It also is a book which describes the attitudes and practices of the followers, which are called Muslims. 

Jainism has a book of scripture they call Agamas, which is made up of small texts called sutras, and they memorize these and pass them on to their children. 


Communism Has A Book

More than any other book, no doubt the book The Communist Manifesto is the basic text for communism. Several other well known books express the same ideals and are used for communist attitudes and practices.

Socialism And Public Education Has A Book

Public education was not the primary way of education in America in its early years. There were many private schools, which were supported by humanitarians and churches. Education was of a high caliber at that time. When Unitarians took over the operation of Harvard University in 1805, socialism's ideas began to become familiar in this country. 

Then a man named Robert Owen wrote a book in 1816 entitled A New View of Society, in which he expressed his belief that man is not depraved and that man is completely able to bring himself to perfection by the formation of good character and by keeping everyone happy, a Utopia. He thought that the earlier a student started learning his program, the better it would be for society.

This book was the beginning of what we call Socialism, so Robert Owen is considered the father of Socialism. The Unitarians loved his book and his ideas, so they began to encourage a compulsory public education system so that every student would be educated to be like all the other students, little Socialists. Thus, one writer noted, "Indeed, public education was to become the socialists' primary instrument for promoting socialism."

The ideas of Robert Owen have been memorized and taught to children for over 150 years as our country goes deeper and deeper into Socialism. Owen's ideas were written down in many textbooks, and his ideas are inculcated into almost every textbook, whether it be in philosophy, science, technology, or cooking. Socialists love their book(s).

Conclusion

Every religion, every cult, every social institution has a book. The Christian textbook, the Bible, is the only book and the only religion in the main which is not revered and loved by its people. It is neglected, scoffed, and harassed by many. Christians do not teach their children to memorize passages from our book.

We should be ashamed, because many Christians are ashamed of their book. Therefore, many are ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ. If Socialists were to neglect their writings as much as we do our Bibles, Socialism would quickly die. If the books of world religions were neglected as much as our Bible, they would collapse. Why is our religion seemingly on the brink of failure in our country? Could it be because we neglect the very book that strengthens our cause and gives us courage to stand for what we believe? Certainly I would think that is the case. What should we do?

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Down From His Glory

Dr. Ronnie Wolfe – December 23, 2018

    Before the dawn of time, before space, before Lucifer, before holy angels, before the Spirit moved upon the face of the deep, before . . . the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy? (Job 38:7), before  He . . . compassed the waters with bounds, until the day and night come to an end (Job 26:10), before the first cloud passed across the sky, before the wind ever blew across the meadow, before the first sunrise or sunset, before the first day and the first night, before darkness, before light, before Adam and Noah and Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and Joseph and Moses, before the kings and prophets of Israel, before there were any nations of people placed in their bounds, before philosophy and science and logic and even earthly wisdom, there was God.
    God sat alone in his spiritual environment, for he is a spirit (John 4:24); but, there stood with him on an equal plane and a design, both coeval an coequal, the Holy Spirit and our Savior, Jesus, the coming Messiah, who, from before the world ever began, had glory with God. John 17:5 says,  And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was. The only thing that glorified God in timeless eternity past was his Son, Jesus; and it is his Son, Jesus, through and to which his glory belongs and is given ultimately.
    These three alone, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, inhabited eternity with no communion or fellowship with a physical world. Because of his perfection, it is difficult to believe that God could be lonely; but God created a physical world with plants, animals, and people to bring himself praise and honor, and glory, which he richly deserves. Even nature itself brings glory to God says Psalm 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. – Psalms 145:10  All thy works shall praise thee, O LORD; and thy saints shall bless thee.
    Then in a moment determined in the mind of God he brought physical things into being. Moses wrote in his book of law, beginning at the beginning, God told him to write in Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. Then John, the apostle, stated in different words the same mantra in John 1:1-3 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  2  The same was in the beginning with God.  3  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.  From his glory in heaven Jesus spoke all things into existence. Genesis said that “In the beginning God created.” John says, “In the beginning . . . all things were made by him.” Without him nothing was made that was made. Jesus was in his glory before the foundation of the world.  Then Jesus came “Down From His Glory” to reveal God to the world, to let men know something about their origin, their dependence on a holy God, and their purpose in living.

I.  DOWN FROM HIS GLORY PROLEPTICALY

    Proleptic means to speak of something in the future as if it were in the present. Jesus came proleptically in shadows and types under the Mosaic Law. The law proclaimed Jesus in a figure through the ceremonial law: the sacrifices given by Moses, the offerings given, the tabernacle in the wilderness, the lamb, the bullock, the Shekinah Glory on the mercy seat, and on and on.
    This proleptic coming of Jesus into the physical world was seeing through a glass darkly. People could not see Jesus with their naked eye. They could not touch or handle him. They could not experience his voice as he taught people through his parables and sermons. Under Moses he could be seen only through types and shadows – Hebrews 10:1  For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. So Jesus’ coming down in shadows and types could not take away our sins nor make the comers perfect.
    Jesus came down from his glory in heaven, showing the people of Israel who God is and witnessed of the coming of a Messiah, portrayed through many of the things that these “comers” saw, touched, and tasted, of the word of God, but only typically and in a shadowy figure.
    So Jesus came down from his glory proleptically.

II.  DOWN FROM HIS GLORY PROHETICALLY

    During this time when Jesus was coming down from his glory typically, prophets were sent to Israel to show forth, not only the chastisement of God for Israel’s sins, not only for God’s blessings to them if they obey his laws, but also to predict the coming of a Messiah, one who would be the anointed One, one who could take away their sins forever. Remember that John said in  John 1:45  Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.
    Isaiah, the prophet, spoke of Jesus’ virgin birth – Isaiah  9:6  For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
     Jeremiah prophesies of the coming of the Branch of Righteousness: Jeremiah 33:14 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will perform that good thing which I have promised unto the house of Israel and to the house of Judah.      15 In those days, and at that time, will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up unto David; and he shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land.  16 In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, The Lord our righteousness.   17 For thus saith the Lord; David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel.
    Ezekiel saw a vision of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. (Ezekiel 1:28). This is none other than Jesus, which in the New Testament is explained in Hebrews 1:3  Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, . . .
    Daniel’s prophecy tells of Nebuchadnezzar’s look into the fiery furnace, and what did he see but three men in the fire and  the form of the fourth is like the Son of God. (Daniel 3:25). Daniel also speaks of the 70 weeks and at the certain point at which the Most Holy will be anointed. This is none other than Jesus Christ.
    We cannot leave the prophets unless we see that portion in Micah  5:2  But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.  This can be none other than Jesus Christ, the Messiah. Yet, through a dark glass the hearers saw the Messiah come down from his glory. He had not yet been seen by the naked eye nor touched with humans hands, nor had anyone ever received his touch of healing or comfort or his teachings of the great doctrines of God.
    These prophecies have all been proven to be true; and, in that day when Jesus came from heaven to be born of a virgin, the Bible says in John 1:11  He came unto his own, and his own received him not.  What a sad situation, to see the Messiah and not receive him!

III.  DOWN FROM HIS GLORY PERSONALLY

    The Bible tells us in Galatians 4:4  But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, Jesus came in the fulness of time, the exact time that God had determined before the foundation of the world for him to come to earth bodily.
    Notice Hebrews 10:5  Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: 
    God has shown himself in creation through the writing of Moses. He has shown himself through the Mosaic Law by sacrifices and offerings. He has shown himself to the world through the prophets of old, who prophesied of his coming to the earth as the one and only Messiah, the anointed One, the only mediator between God and men (1 Timothy 2:5).
    His body was prepared in the womb of a young virgin named Mary, who was engaged to a man named Joseph. The body was prepared by the Holy Spirit, who by a miracle of God caused Mary to be with child without an earthly father. When Joseph found that Mary was with child, he decided to put her away, because they were only espoused, or engaged, at the time; but an angel from God revealed to Joseph that Mary had not sinned but was blessed of God to carry this child and birth a boy whose name was to be called Jesus, because he would save his people from their sins. So then Mary and Joseph were married, as the angel instructed them (Matthew 1:20).
    So the baby grew in Mary’s womb for nine months and was born on that determined day as the king of the Jews. As the babe lay in a manger, out there in the field shepherds were watching their sheep. They saw the glory of the Lord around them, and an angel came, and in Luke 2:10 we read:   And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  11  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. Later others came to visit Jesus and brought him gifts, and he grew in favor with God and man, and God was pleased with his Son on earth.
    This body that God had prepared for him had great limitations compared to the glory that he had with his Father before the foundation of the world. Jesus had to come Down From His Glory in order to be like unto men.  Paul says in Philippians 2:7  But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: In Romans Paul tells us of the purpose for Jesus’ coming to the earth in a prepared body:  Romans 8:3  For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: He came to condemn sin in the flesh, and that is exactly what he did.
    Jesus was not sent against his own will, because his will was also the will of God the Father and God the Holy Spirit. There need be no compromise and no contradiction. They were all three in agreement as to what was required for redemption, and all three were willing to do their part in bringing redemption to its full end.
    God did not send Jesus to earth out of disrespect for him, for we all know that he humbled himself, or emptied himself, of his eternal glory to come to the earth for our benefit. It was for God’s love for us that Jesus was willing to come. John 3:16  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.
    Jesus shows no reluctance to humiliate himself to become like unto sinful man. He was willing with his own divine will to be made sin for us, says 2 Corinthians 5:21 . . . that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
    Only a divine mind can comprehend what Jesus suffered as he went into the Garden of Gethsemane to take our sins upon himself and to bear these sins upon the tree (the cross on which he so cruelly was hung and tortured to death). 1 Peter 2:24 says,  Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.  This is why God prepared him a body, so that in his own body he may take my sins and carry them upon the cross (the tree) so that I could have eternal life through the righteousness of Christ’s own life and death. What a wonderful Savior!
    His body, being prepared by God, protected by God, and presented to God is on the tree prepared for death, for it is appointed unto men once to die . . . (Hebrews 9:27). May I remind you that Jesus died only once, for it was this one death that redeemed my soul and made me ready for Heaven by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ, the Messiah of God. After his death, Jesus was laid in a tomb that was borrowed from a rich man, borrowed because Jesus needed it only for a little while, clean, because Jesus’ body did not see corruption.
    What does it mean to be risen from the dead? Mark 9:9-10  And as they came down from the mountain, he charged them that they should tell no man what things they had seen, till the Son of man were risen from the dead.  10  And they kept that saying with themselves, questioning one with another what the rising from the dead should mean.  This was the question coming from Jesus’ disciples. What does it mean to be risen from the dead? They would not know until that day when they were shocked to know this, as we read from  Matthew 28:6  He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. Jesus had already told, as stated in Mark 8:31  And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. Jesus’ body is now back in heaven from where it came. His glory has been given back to him, which was taken away for the brief time that he was here on earth to accomplish God’s will for his prepared body. His glory has been restored, and he sits now on the right hand of the Father as King of kings and Lord of lords.

IV.  DOWN FROM HIS GLORY PROSPECTIVELY

    What a unique but questionable day when in Acts 1:11 we read, . . . Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. Jesus’ salvation brings the prospect of a better time, a better place, and a better being.
    The Bible says in Hebrews 10:37  For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry. In Hebrews 9:28 we read,  So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.
    Jesus will come down from his glory to take us to be with him forever: John 14:2-3  In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.  3  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. To be with Jesus is what makes Heaven Heaven. Jesus called the thief on the cross to his Paradise when he said in Luke 23:43 . . .  Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise. 
    In prospect, then, we see Jesus’ returning to take each of us who believe to be with him also.  1 Thessalonians 4:16-17  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  17  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
    So, Jesus came Down From His Glory (1) Proleptically, (2) Prophetically, (3) Personally, and (4) Prospectively. But he did come Down From His Glory. He did it in a body to redeem his people from their sins, and by the grace of God through faith in this Messiah, Jesus, the anointed One, you can have eternal life. All you must do is turn from your sins and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved. Notice his story in summary: Philippians 2:7  But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:  8  And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.  9  Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
    Do you see him in the manger? Do you see him in the law? Do you see him through the prophets? Do you see him in prospect, that he will return one day to receive us by being caught up into heaven? Do you see him by grace, through faith? Are you born again? Are you saved? He humiliated himself to take my place on the cross and suffer for my sins. Then God highly exalted him, lifted him up to heaven and placed him on God’s right hand to show that he is the Lord of all.
    He can be your Redeemer today. You can have eternal life today, if you will repent and believe on Jesus Christ as Savior. I pray God will work in your heart to bring you to repentance and faith. Acts 20:21  Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Truth And THE Truth

Last evening in our Seniors Meeting Bro. Eric Johnson gave us a wonderful devotion about Pilate. He mentioned that Pilate said, "What is truth?" When the devotion was over, I made a statement that Pilate was not asking "What is THE truth," but "What is truth?

Pilate was asking a philosophical question and was being pragmatic (trying to get everything to work out without his being hurt in any way, yet the end would justify the means). Plato wrote about Truth, and that Truth he said to be transcendent, not reachable--no one can ever really know the full truth.

Jesus is not just Truth; he is THE truth. The Truth was standing in the very presence of Pilate, but his carnal mind could not comprehend it; so he pragmatically endeavored in his eloquence to display some kind of truth that would satisfy everyone.

Thus, God used this confused man to bring about his Divine will in the life of his Son, Jesus. Jesus was placed under the authority of the Jews that they may crucify him, and this crucifixion satisfied God's judgment against sin so that every believer may have eternal life and shall not come into condemnation, but is passed from death unto life.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Abraham's Imputed Righteousness

Preaching Points From Romans #6
Dr. Ronnie Wolfe
Romans 4:18-22

I.  HE BELIEVED IN HOPE, 18

There was no hope for Abraham or his wife, Sarah. They were both too old to bring forth children. He was to become the father of many nations, and yet he had no children of his own. God had said, "So shall thy seed be."

Against the fact the all hope seemed vain, Abraham believed God. He believed in that hope that he thought did not exist. He saw that which is invisible. He pursued thoughts of grandeur that were to him (in the flesh) unreasonable and impossible.

Abraham believed accord to that which God had spoken and simply because he had spoken. We can learn much from this: that we must believe what God has said (in his word) simply because God has said it with no need for mundane proof of some kind that can deliver what he has promised.

II.  HE BOWED TO FAITH, 19

Abraham considered not his body to be dead, although by all earthly reason it was dead to the production of offspring. His faith, then, was against all human reason and must be completely divine, prompted by God, led by God, induced by God, and brought into the human realm by supernatural means, which God did for Abraham.

Abraham was 100 years of age, and his body should be dead to reproduction; but Abraham believed God, not his own surmising. Not only so, but he had to also believe Sarah's womb to be alive. This deepened the need for Abraham's strong faith in God. Jesus said in Mark 9:23  Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.

III.  HE BENT TOWARD FAITH, 20-21

In this situation unbelief would be unsurprising and doubt would be expected; but Abraham "staggered not" at the promise of God. His faith was firmly fixed on God, and his heart was one that had been touched by the divine grace of God Himself.

Abraham was "strong in faith" and even gave glory to God. He rejoiced in his faith, being affected by God's goodness in his promise, which left no room for doubt that God would do what he said he would do.

Abraham was "fully persuaded" in what God was about to perform. He understood the concept that Paul wrote about in Ephesians 3:20  Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,

III. HE WAS BLESSED WITH IMPUTATION, 22

Abraham could not conjure righteousness in his own mind, his heart, or his own will. He was completely dependent upon God to give him righteousness. All of his earthly effort would contribute nothing to righteousness. The only righteousness that had any merit was the righteousness that God had to give, and that is Jesus Christ's righteousness in his perfection.

God worked all of these things in the life of Abraham by faith that he might be credited with pure and perfect righteousness before God. There is no merit to procure this righteousness, and there is no sin that can destroy it. This is the very righteousness that Abraham needed. It is also the very righteousness that produced a faithful life in Abraham to be the "father of all them that believe" (Rom. 4:11); the "father of many nations" (Rom. 4:17); and the "father of us all" (Rom. 4:16).