1

They Shall Never Perish (John 10:28)

Our Lord here makes a blanket, unconditional promise to every true believer. It takes into consideration all times, all circumstances, all contingencies, all events and all possibilities. This promise takes in all the flock. Not one of Christ’s sheep will ever perish no, not even one. If you are a believer, if you trust the Lord Jesus Christ, if you have received eternal life, you will never perish. Christ himself has promised it! Nothing in you, nothing done by you, nothing in heaven, earth or hell will ever destroy your soul. Here are seven reasons why Christ’s sheep will never perish.

1. The Promise of God must be, fulfilled. God himself says, ‘They shall never perish.’ If one promise of God could be broken, no promise could be believed.

2. The purpose of God cannot be frustrated (John 6:37-40). God’s covenant cannot be made void. His elective purpose cannot be overturned. The suretyship engagements of Christ cannot be broken. The Good Shepherd must save his sheep. (John 10: 16).

3. The redemptive work of Christ cannot be nullified (Isa.53:10-11). That which Christ purchased, he must have. Otherwise he could never see of the travail of his soul and be satisfied.

4. The believer’s justification by God in Christ is an irreversible act of grace (Rom. 8:31-34). God will not impute sin to those whom he has justified in his Son (Rom. 4:8).

5. The work of God’s grace in the believer’s heart can never be defeated (Phil. 1:6). That which God has begun he will carry on to perfection. Nothing and no one can halt God’s work.

6. The intercessory work of our Lord Jesus Christ must prevail (John 17:9-11,15,20; 1 John 2:1-2). Those for whom the Son of God pleads cannot perish.

7. The seat of the Holy Spirit cannot be broken (Eph. 1: 13- 14). God the Holy Spirit has sealed every believer unto the day of redemption, securing our glorious resurrection and eternal inheritance in Christ.

-Don Fortner




Though Afflicted, Tempest–tossed

Pensive, doubting, fearful heart,
Hear what CHRIST the Savior says;
Every word should joy impart,
Change thy mourning into praise:
Yes, he speaks, and speaks to thee,
May he help thee to believe!
Then thou presently wilt see,
Thou hast little cause to grieve.

“Fear thou not, nor be ashamed,
All thy sorrows soon shall end
I who heav’n and earth have framed,
Am thy husband and thy friend
I the High and Holy One,
Israel’s GOD by all adored;
As thy Savior will be known,
Thy Redeemer and thy Lord.

For a moment I withdrew,
And thy heart was filled with pain;
But my mercies I’ll renew,
Thou shalt soon rejoice again:
Though I scorn to hide my face,
Very soon my wrath shall cease;
’Tis but for a moment’s space,
Ending in eternal peace.

When my peaceful bow appears
Painted on the wat’ry cloud;
Tis to dissipate thy fears,
Lest the earth should be o’erflowed:
’Tis an emblem too of grace,
Of my cov’nant love a sign;
Though the mountains leave their place,
Thou shalt be for ever mine.

Though afflicted, tempest–tossed,
Comfortless awhile thou art,
Do not think thou canst be lost,
Thou art graven on my heart
All thy walls I will repair,
Thou shalt be rebuilt anew;
And in thee it shall appear,
What a God of love can do.

-John Newton




Five Heart-Piercing Statements

Many years ago, I heard Henry Mahan make several statements in a message he preached. As I sat in the congregation, listening to the message, I could easily have been convinced that he was preaching to no one but me. Like barbed arrows, these five statements pierced my heart. I wrote them down because I hope never to forget them.

  1. “We have entirely too many fears for a people to whom the Lord
    has said, ‘Fear thou not; for I am with thee; be not dismayed, for I am thy God; I will strengthen thee, yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.’”

Why can’t we believe God? Has he not proven himself faithful to us? David heard God’s promise and believed him. His faith in Christ quietened his fears. He said, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death. I will fear no evil for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.”

  1. “We have far too many doubts and fears concerning God’s mercy, love, and grace for a people to whom the Lord has said, ‘Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out…I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish.’”
  2. “We spend entirely too much time grumbling and complaining about our trials and troubles for a people to whom the Lord has said, ‘In the world ye shall have tribulation but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’”
  3. “We have entirely too much attachment to this world and to this present life for a people who are looking for a city whose Builder and Maker is God (Heb. 11:8-10).”
  4. We have far too much anxiety, care, and fear, far too much
    concern for earthly, material things for a people to whom the Lord has said, ‘Your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things’” (Matt. 6:32).

It is written, “My God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:19). Why should I fret when my God has promised to provide? Why should I concern myself about that which God has promised to do?

-Don Fortner




It Is High Time To Awake Out of Sleep

Romans 13:11

The sleep here spoken of by Paul is a shameful indifference to Christ, a spiritual, callousness into which true believers sometimes fall. Yes, men and women who truly love and trust Christ do sometimes, by their own sin and neglect of him, become indifferent to him. The wise virgins, like the foolish, are often found asleep (Matthew 25:1-13; Song of Solomon 5:2-3). And when they are asleep, it is impossible to tell the wise from the foolish.

            Are you asleep? Have you, like the church of Ephesus, lost your first love? Have you forgotten the joy of believing? Has your grasp of the Savior lost the strength of freshness? Your doctrine may be very precise, though you sleep. If you are born of God, you have seen your sin. But has the fresh conviction of personal depravity and sin you once felt so deeply now become no more than a doctrine you acknowledge? You know the righteousness of God in Christ, but has the righteousness of Christ now become no more than a point of doctrine about which you debate? It was once a blessed garment of salvation you wrapped around your naked soul. You have seen God’s judgment of sin in Christ. How joyfully you once bathed your filthy soul in Immanuel’s precious blood! The atonement of Christ, his finished work of redemption, his precious blood were once more than doctrinal facts to you. They were your soul’s hope, joy, and peace.

            All the doctrines of Christ are like roses on a bush. As long as they are on the bush, they are beautiful, sweet to smell, blooming with life. But we are not content to leave them there. We cut them, put them in our little vase, arrange them in an order that suits us, set them on a shelf in our little room, and admire them. But soon they wither, die, and begin to stink! So, too, the doctrines of Christ are beautiful, sweet, blooming with life in Christ, but only as they are seen in him. It is Christ we love. He is altogether lovely. Christ is life, not his doctrine. It is Christ to whom we must look. It is Christ who is our life. It is Christ who is beautiful. I do not suggest that we become indifferent to Christ’s doctrine. But we are terribly foolish if we become so enamored with the doctrine of Christ that we become indifferent to Christ! To sleep in a bed of doctrinal indifference is just as evil as sleeping in a bed of worldly care. “It is high time to awake out of sleep!”

  -Don Fortner




The Future Peace And Glory Of The Church

Isaiah 60:15-20

Hear what God the LORD hath spoken,

O my people, faint and few;

Comfortless, afflicted, broken,

Fair abodes I build for you:

Themes of heart–felt tribulation

Shall no more perplex your ways;

You shall name your walls, Salvation,

And your gates shall all be praise.

There, like streams that feed the garden,

Pleasures, without end, shall flow;

For the LORD, your faith rewarding,

All his bounty shall bestow:

Still in undisturbed possession,

Peace and righteousness shall reign;

Never shall you feel oppression,

Hear the voice of war again.

Ye no more your suns descending,

Waning moons no more shall see,

But your griefs, for ever ending,

Find eternal noon in me:

God shall rise, and shining o’er you,

Change to day the gloom of night;

He, the Lord, shall be your glory,

GOD your everlasting light.

-John Newton




The Cup Of Wrath

“In the hand of the LORD is a cup full of red wine mixed with spices! He pours it out, and all the wicked of the earth drink it down to its very dregs!” Psalm 75:8

There has been only One who has ever drunk this cup down to its very dregs!  The only One who has taken, tasted, drunk, and wrung out the bitterest of the bitter dregs — has been the Judge Himself, the Lord Jesus!
You know how often, when on earth, He spoke of it. “Are you able to drink the cup that I shall drink of?” (Matthew 20:22). “The cup which My Father has given Me, shall I not drink it?” (John 18:11).
The universe saw Him with it at His lips. It was our cup of trembling — the cup in which the wrath due to His people was mixed. What wrath, what woe!

On Calvary, He drank it all! I suppose the three hours of darkness may have been the time when He was drinking it down the very dregs; for then arose from His broken heart, the wail which so appealed to the heart of the Father, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me!” As He drank the last drop, and cried out, “It is finished!” we may believe that the holy angels felt an inconceivable relief — and even the Father Himself! So tremendous was the wrath and curse! — the wrath and curse due to our sin!
Jesus drank that cup as the substitute for His innumerable people, who were given to Him by the Father; and thereby freed them from ever tasting even one drop of that fierce wrath, that “cup of red wine, mixed with spices,” with its dregs — its unknown terrors!

“Death and the curse were in our cup,
 O Christ, ’twas full for Thee!
 But Thou hast drained the last dark drop,
 ‘Tis empty now for me!”

“Once it was mine, that cup of wrath,
 And Jesus drank it dry!”

-Andrew Bonar




My People!

I will be their God—and they shall be My people! 2 Corinthians 6:16

What a sweet title, “My people!” What a cheering revelation, “Their God!”  How much of meaning is couched in those two words, “My people!”
Here is speciality. The whole world is God’s—heaven, even the heaven of heavens is the Lord’s, and He reigns among the children of men. But of those whom He has chosen, whom He has purchased to Himself—He calls them especially, “My people”.

In this word there is the idea of proprietorship. In a special manner the “Lord’s portion is His people.” All the nations upon earth are His, and the whole world is in His power—yet His people, His chosen people, are more especially His possession, for . . .
  He has done more for them than others;
  He has bought them with His precious blood;
  He has set His great heart upon them;
  He has adopted them into His redeemed family;
  He has loved them with an everlasting love—a love which many waters cannot quench, and which the revolutions of time shall never suffice in the least degree to diminish.

Dear friends, can you, by faith, see yourselves in that number? Can you look up to heaven and say, “My Lord and my God—mine by that sweet relationship which entitles me to call You Father—mine by that hallowed fellowship which I delight to hold with You when You are pleased to manifest Yourself unto me as You do not unto the world?”

Can you read the Book of Inspiration, and find there the evidences of your salvation? Can you read your title written in His precious blood? Can you, by humble faith, lay hold of Jesus’ garments, and say, “My Christ”?

If you can, then God says of you, and of others like you, “My people!” for, if God is your God, and Christ is your Christ, the Lord has shown special, particular grace to you—then you are the object of His choice, accepted in His beloved Son!  “I am my Beloved’s, and my Beloved is mine!” Song of Songs 6:3

-C. H. Spurgeon




Weaned From Feeding on Husks and Ashes 

“I will satisfy her poor with bread.” Psalm 132:15

The Lord has given a special promise to Zion’s poor—”I will satisfy her poor with bread.” Nothing else? Bread? Is that all? Yes! That is all God has promised—bread, the staff of life. But what does He mean by “bread”? The Lord Himself explains what bread is. He says, “I am the bread of life: he who comes to Me will not be hungry; and he who believes in Me will never be thirsty. I am the living bread which came down out of heaven: if anyone eats of this bread he shall live forever.” The bread, then, that God gives to Zion’s poor is His own dear Son—fed upon by living faith, under the special operations of the Holy Spirit in the heart. “I will satisfy her poor with bread.”

But must not we have an appetite before we can feed upon bread? The rich man who feasts continually upon juicy meat and savory sauces, would not live upon bread. To come down to live on such simple food as bread—why, one must be really hungry to be satisfied with that. So it is spiritually. A man fed upon ‘mere notions’ and a number of ‘speculative doctrines’ cannot descend to the simplicity of the gospel. To feed upon a crucified Christ, a bleeding Jesus!—he is not sufficiently brought down to the starving point, to relish such spiritual food as this!

Before, then, he can feed upon this Bread of life he must be made spiritually poor. And when he is brought to be nothing but a mass of wretchedness, filth, guilt, and misery—when he feels his soul sinking under the wrath of God, and has scarcely a hope to buoy up his poor tottering heart—when he finds the world embittered to him, and he has no one object from which he can reap any abiding consolation—then the Lord is pleased to open up in his conscience, and bring the sweet savor of the love of His dear Son into his heart—and he begins to taste gospel bread. Being weaned from feeding on husks and ashes, and sick “of the vines of Sodom and the fields of Gomorrah,” and being brought to relish simple gospel food, he begins to taste a sweetness in ‘Christ crucified’ which he never could know—until he was made experimentally poor. The Lord has promised to satisfy such. “I will satisfy her poor with bread.”

-J.C Philpot




God’s Working for Good in the Christian

“We know that all things work together for good, to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28

Yes, even all the falls and all the sins of the saints shall work for their good. Oh . . . the care, the fear, the watchfulness, the tenderness, the zeal — which God raises in the souls of His saints by their very falls! Oh the hatred, the indignation, and the detestation—which God raises in the hearts of His children against sin—by their very falling into sin!

Oh what love to Christ, what thankfulness for Christ, what admiration of Christ, what cleaving to Christ, what exalting of Christ, what drawings from Christ’s grace — are saints led to, by their very falls!

It is the glory of God’s holiness, that . . . He can turn spiritual diseases—into holy remedies! He can turn soul poisons — into heavenly cordials! He can prevent sin by sin, and cure falling by falling!

O Christian! What though friends and relations frown upon you, what though enemies are plotting and conspiring against you, what though needs, like armed men, are breaking in upon you,
what though men rage, and devils roar against you, what though sickness is devastating your family, what though death stands every day at your elbow — yet there is no reason for you to fear nor faint, because all these things shall work for your good! Yes, there is wonderful cause of joy and rejoicing in all the afflictions and tribulations which come upon you—considering that they shall all work for your good.

-Thomas Brooks




They Are Gone

I want every child of God to realize the fact that at this very moment all of his sins are gone – effectually, completely, perfectly gone – through the great sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ. All of your sins, from the cradle to the grave, sins before conversion and sins after conversion, and sins of every kind are washed away in Immanuel’s precious blood.

Since Christ has died in our stead, under the sentence of God’s law, we shall never be charged with sin. God has removed our sins from his book, from his memory, and from us. In Christ we have been freed from sin. “As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12).

Stephen Charnock said, “When sin is pardoned, it is never charged again; the guilt of it can no more return than east can become west, or west become east.” Spurgeon said, “Our sins are so effectually removed that we shall not ultimately suffer any loss or damage through having sinned. That detriment was laid on Christ. His was the loss: ours is the gain. His was the suffering: ours is the unutterable joy.” And God himself says, “I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins” (Isaiah 43:25).             

-Don Fortner