Most Men are Not Satisfied with the Permanent Output of Their Lives

Only One LifeMost men are not satisfied with the permanent output of their lives. Nothing can wholly satisfy the life of Christ within his followers except the adoption of Christ’s purpose toward the world he came to redeem. Fame, pleasure and riches are but husks and ashes in contrast with the boundless and abiding joy of working with God for the fulfillment of his eternal plans. The men who are putting everything into Christ’s undertaking are getting out of life its sweetest and most priceless rewards.

J. Campbell White, Excerpt from Secretary of the Laymen’s Missionary Movement, 1909.

 

Psalm 67 – Beautiful Singing from the New Westminster Chapel, New Westminster, BC.

1.  O God, to us show mercy, And bless us in Thy grace; Cause Thou to shine upon us; The brightness of Thy face;

2.That so Thy way most holy; on earth may soon be known; and unto ev’ry people; Thy saving grace be shown.

3.  O God, let peoples praise Thee; Let all the people sing;

4.  Let nations now be joyful; Let songs of gladness ring; For Thou wilt judge the peoples

In truth and righteousness; And o’er the earth shall nations Thy leadership confess.

5.  O God, let peoples praise Thee; Let all the people sing;

6.  For earth in rich abundance; To us her fruit will bring.  God, our own God, will bless us;

Yea, God will blessing send; And all the earth shall fear Him; To its remotest end.

How the LORD Used My Time in Malawi to Bring Me Back To Himself – A Testimony from John Campbell

Yesterday, after our morning worship service, I had the wonderful privilege of talking with John Campbell who is visiting some relatives in town who happen to be members of the congregation that I serve here in New Westminster, British Columbia.  As we talked, he shared with me how the LORD used his time in Malawi in the early 70’s to bring him back to Himself.  John lived in Malawi for two years and worked as an engineer with a Canadian volunteer organization.  Little did he know that the LORD would use his time in Malawi to bring open His heart to the gospel.

I asked John if he would share this wonderful story of God’s redemption in his life with us on camera and he kindly agreed to do so.  Thank you John!

A number of things resonated with me as John and I talked after the morning service.  These are the things that made me think that this story ought to be shared with a broader audience:

1.  How wonderful and amazing is the LORD in His ways – especially with regards to the salvation of sinners and the forgiveness which He offers through Jesus Christ (Isaiah 55:8-9; Romans 11:33-36).

2.  The way John talked about Christ as a Friend – a real personal and trusted Friend who is always with him everywhere he goes.

3.  John also said something that resonated with me when I asked him about his hope of glory.  Without missing a beat and with a smile on his face, he said, “I can’t wait to get there!”  He goes on in the video to explain what he means by that, “I certainly don’t fear death…”  How wonderful!

4.  Finally, he shared his concern for Canada which has become so secular and very much against Christianity.  He expressed a strong and passionate desire to see the people of Canada who have turned their backs against the LORD being brought back to Him.  Canada is a wide open mission field indeed and we definitely need help here!

I hope that you will watch the video yourself and get a glimpse of what John and I shared today.  Please pray for us as we continue serving the LORD here!

For more information on this or anything else that might be of interest to you, please contact me at:  pastor@newwestminsterchapel.org or visit our website at:  http://www.newwestminsterchapel.org.  God bless you!

THE HOT WATER BOTTLE

A True Story By Helen Roseveare, Missionary to Africa 

One night, in Central Africa, I had worked hard to help a mother in the labor ward; but in spite of all that we could do, she died leaving us with a tiny, premature baby and a crying, two-year-old daughter.

We would have difficulty keeping the baby alive. We had no incubator. We had no electricity to run an incubator, and no special feeding facilities. Although we lived on the equator, nights were often chilly with treacherous drafts. Continue reading

GOD’S HEART FOR THE WORLD – A MESSAGE FROM THE LATE DR. JOHN STOTT

This message has been transcribed from an audio message from the late Dr. John Stott

Our God is a generous God.  Our God is a missionary God.  Yet the very concept of mission is out of favor in today’s pluralistic world.  Pluralism is the popular ideology.  It affirms the equal validity of every religion.  Whereas we Christians insist that Jesus is unique!  We believe in the finality, and the supremacy and uniqueness of Jesus Christ!  We do not speak of Jesus the Great!  Alexander the Great!  Napoleon the Great!  Charles the Great!  But not Jesus the Great!  He is not the Great!  He is the Only!  There is nobody like Him.  He has successors.  and no competitors.  He is unique!  More than that, as we have already been reminded, missions is rooted in the nature of a generous God Himself.   Continue reading

‘Why I want the right to die’ in Scotland

I was greatly shocked when my wife shared this article with me this afternoon.  Al Jazeera published this article on their website.  I encourage you to read it here.  Independent Member of the Scottish Parliament (MSP), Margo MacDonald has launched a fresh attempt to give terminally ill people in Scotland the right to choose when to die – which in my mind is outrageous and grossly immoral, cruel and careless.  It totally degrades the intrinsic value of human life as given by God the Almighty, who is our Creator (Genesis 1:27) and the Creator of heavens and earth!  This “End of Life Assistance” Bill sets out that anyone over the age of 16 could request assistance to die if that person was diagnosed as terminally ill and that he/she finds life unbearable.  Ms. MacDonald tried to get this bill passed in December 2010 but it was defeated.  According to the Huffington Post (UK), “A series of scrutiny sessions were held at the Scottish Parliament, taking in evidence from doctors in countries where forms of assisted suicide are permitted.”

I find Ms. MacDonald’s arguments flawed and unconvincing – but that’s not all that disturbs me.  The bill that she is pushing is in direct violation of the Sixth Commandment:  “Thou shalt not kill” (Exodus 20:13).  This bill seeks to give man the legal freedom to take one’s life or that of another with impunity.

Here are some quotes from the article:

Assisted Suicide (“Mercy Killing”) – currently banned by law in Scotland & the UK:

In Scotland, as in the rest of the UK, it is currently a crime to help someone end his or her own life. A doctor who injects a patient with lethal drugs in order to kill them could be prosecuted for culpable homicide or even murder.

Margo MacDonald wants that legal ban repealed:

“If it came to the worst and I was faced with a very bitter and protracted end, I should have the right to ask for help to end my life earlier than nature intended,” Macdonald told Al Jazeera.

She added: “I would like the insurance policy of knowing that if it gets near, and I would like to shorten it, I would not be putting my family at risk. It is not about pain, it is about making sure you are still yourself.”

Margo wants autonomy not dignity – She has a warped view of “dignity” according to what she says here:

She told Al Jazeera that the same debate is going on all over the world and if her bill is passed: “Scotland would be seen as a place where humanity, above all, and individual autonomy is respected. This legislation is really about the right of a person to see their life through and keep their dignity to the very end.”

Some church leaders are fighting against this:

When this issue was last debated, the Archbishop of Glasgow, Mario Conti, told a special Mass for Healthcare workers: “Laws need to be objective in their statement of principle. It is wrong in principle for someone to take their own life; it is wrong in principle for someone to help them to do so.”

Peter Kearney, Director of the Scottish Catholic Media Office, told Al Jazeera: “Nothing has changed. Deliberate killing, even when assisting someone who is in a state of despair, is always wrong.”

Many doctors are concerned:

Many doctors are also concerned that legalizing assisted suicide could lead to frail or elderly people being coerced into taking their lives.

My Thoughts:

I hope that this bill is defeated once again in the Scottish Parliament.  I also hope and pray that Christians in Scotland and around the world will continue to speak out against this and similar violations of God’s law and order for His people.  From a human stand-point, Ms. MacDonald seems “unstoppable.”  She probably thinks so.  She is quoted as saying:

Since the defeat of my original proposal in December 2010, the volume of correspondence I’ve received on the matter, coupled with the continuing public interest, stimulated in part by some high-profile statements in favour of the general principle of assisted suicide, indicates to me a consistent level of support for individuals suffering a terminal illness or condition, for whom life becomes intolerable, to have the legal right to request help to end their life before nature decrees.

But those of us who believe in the Sovereign LORD who rules over the universe, know that the LORD is ultimately in control and that He has the power to stop this and all ills that have plagued Scotland and the world (see Proverbs 21:1).

Why Am I So Concerned for Scotland?

Just for the same reasons that I would be concerned if this was happening in any other country primarily because it goes against the will – it goes against the Law of God clearly stated in Scripture.  That’s the main reason why this disturbs me.  But there is more:

As one who has not in the least sense benefited from what the Lord has done through Scotland over the years, I cringe when I read this kind of stuff about Scotland or coming out of Scotland.  I feel a special affinity to Scotland for various reasons.  Let me mention three:

1.  The first missionary to bring the gospel to my home country (Malawi) was Scottish.  His name was Dr. David Livingstone.  Malawi is replete with monuments in honor of Dr. Livingstone and his work there – not the least of which is Blantyre, Malawi’s commercial capital which was named after Blantyre, Lanarkshire, Scotland where Dr. Livingstone was born.  I had the privilege of visiting Blantyre (Scotland) a few years ago and saw the house in which Dr. Livingstone was born and raised.  This house is now the home of the David Livingstone Center.

2.  As a Presbyterian and Reformed Christian and church minister, I owe a lot of that to what the Lord has done through Scottish men like John KnoxSamuel RutherfordRobert Murray McCheyne, Professor John Murray, from centuries gone by (just to name a few) – but also from contemporary theologians and preachers like Dr. Sinclair Ferguson, Dr. Alistair Begg, etc.

3.  I am now a gospel minister with a denomination that is rooted in Scotland, the Associated Presbyterians Church (APC) – and I feel for so many of my dear brothers and sisters in Scotland as I consider all the challenges and the spiritual battles that they face in their pursuit of Christ, His will and purposes.  I am concerned and this moves me to pray more fervently for the work of the gospel across Scotland and the UK.

Let’s Pray for Scotland, the UK and the World

Prayer is ultimately the answer – and our sure hope.  “Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain.  Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain” (Psalm 127:1).

Please join me in praying that God’s will may triumph over evil and that Scotland may be turned back to the Lord.  He has done it before, He can do it again.  Even though it seems like a dark cloud is hanging over Scotland and much of the western world, the LORD God can change that.  May the Light of Christ once again shine in Scotland even from the “farthest” corners of the world (like Malawi and such places where the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ is now flourishing).  Perhaps it’s time to send missionaries back to Scotland!  Our God is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we can ever ask or imagine according to His power which is at work in us (see Ephesians 3:20-21).