[2]
A Different Type of President

President Reagan visited Ireland and advocated as a constructive policy the destruction of Northern Ireland and its incorporation in a foreign state. His endorsement of the Irish Forum shows that the President has the same objective as the I.R.A., namely the smashing of the democratic rights of Ulster's majority. The President's policy comes as no surprise. His record of persecution of fundamentalists in the U.S.A. is a pointer to the type of policy we can expect.

Here is the record of a Different Type of U.S. President:

Ho! reapers of life's harvest,
Why stand with rusted blade?

President Garfield was fond of this hymn, and it was sung at his funeral. In addressing an audience of young people on one occasion, Garfield said, in substance, regarding his own conversion:

"Make the most of the present moment. No occasion is unworthy of our best efforts. God often uses humble occasions and little things to shape the course of a man's life. I might say that the wearing of a certain pair of stockings led to the complete change in my life. I had made a trip as a boy on a canal boat and was expecting to leave home for another trip; but I accidentally injured my foot in chopping wood. The blue dye in my home-made socks poisoned the wound and I was kept at home. A Revival broke out meanwhile in the neighbourhood, and I was thus kept within its influence and was converted. New desires and new purposes then took possession of me, and I was determined to seek an education in order that I might live more usefully for Christ." [3]


RC "MASS" FOR BILLY'S SUCCESS

The Church of Rome is right behind Billy Graham's 'Mission to England'. The following article by "Fr" Richard McKay, a Bristol RC priest and RC Liaison Officer to Mission England, appeared in the Catholic Herald 1/6/84.

After more than 18 months of planning, prayer and hard work, at last they came - in their thousands, pouring into Bristol from every part of South West England, South Wales, and beyond. Over eight days, 250,000 to Bristol City's Football Stadium at Ashton Gate. And what brought them? The Gospel of Jesus Christ, as presented by Dr. Billy Graham, the American evangelist.

Each night his message was basically the same - only Christ can solve your personal problems, only Christ can find a way out of the real potential horrors we have wrought upon the earth.

Now is the day to find salvation - this is the moment (and it may never return!) to open yourself to the cleansing forgiveness of Jesus Christ.

And they did. Over 20,000 came forward to the pitch during that week to make some kind of commitment to Christ.

Alcoholics and drug addicts, Jews and Jehovah Witnesses, lapsed Baptists and lapsed Catholics, business people and housewives, university students and unemployed youngsters. Maybe not everyone was sincere, but I would estimate that 80 per cent genuinely seeking hope and faith, searching for an experience that would satisfy that inner hunger and fill that interior emptiness.

One feature that made this mission so unique was that it gathered together Christians from almost the whole spectrum of the Christian Church. The local Catholic Bishop, Mervyn Alexander of Clifton Diocese, some months before had given his open support and encouragement to "Mission England - South West": he appointed me, a Bristol parish priest, as Catholic Liaison, with a brief to encourage and co-ordinate Catholic participation at all levels.

And they did get involved, slowly at first, but as May approached, more and more Catholics committed their time and energy and prayer. So Catholics were trained alongside Pentecostals, Baptists, Anglicans and Brethren and others, trained as counsellors (to help those who come forward on the nights of the Mission), as nurture group leaders (forming all-important follow groups for the new Christians), choir members, stewards and office workers. [4]

Bishop Alexander celebrated Mass in Clifton Cathedral for the success of "Mission England", and drew an enthusiastic congregation of 500 or so. While the majority were connected with charismatic prayer groups, by no means all of them were from this stable.

In the diocese of Clifton over 35 follow-up groups have been formed in parishes, and a few youth groups too.

And now Billy Graham and the Mission England team have moved north to Sunderland. While there are many things I find to criticise in the theology and the presentation the simple fact remains that God uses Dr. Billy Graham to reach the lukewarm and uncommitted, no-one else I know. Thousands around the world and in Britain have prayed long and hard . . . maybe this accounts for the thousands who made at least the beginnings of a commitment to Jesus in that cold wet football stadium each night: I am sure that something more than Dr. Graham's preaching is needed to explain the phenomenon.

Comment is needless. Graham is part of the great delusion, "the lie" of the last days.

POPE BEGS OUR LADY TO FREE MANKIND FROM WAR

Kneeling before the statue of Our Lady of Fatima, in front of a crowd of 150,000 in St. Peter's Square, on Sunday, Pope John Paul begged Our Lady to free mankind from hunger and war.

With the wind ruffling his vestments, the Pope prayed that the world be freed from every evil that the devil ("the spirit of the shadows") has reawoken in our time.

The prayer was part of his "act of entrusting to the Blessed Virgin", a consecration of the world to Our Lady similar to that of Pius XII in 1942 and of John Paul himself in Fatima in 1982. Sr. Lucia, the sole survivor of the three children who first saw Our Lady of Fatima, requested this consecration which she said was Our Lady's wish.

Lucia has said Russia must be consecrated to Our Lady to secure its conversion. There was no explicit mention of Russia in the Pope's prayer before the largest crowd to attend a Holy Year celebration.

(Excerpt - Catholic Herald 30/3/84) [5]

"'MURDER IN THE WOMB" THE BIBLE BASIS FOR THE ANTI-ABORTION POSITION
by REV. FRANK McCLELLAND
(Minister of Toronto Free Presbyterian Church)

As a young boy in my pre-teens, I, in company with others, had a collection of birds' eggs. We would take one egg from a bird's nest, carefully pierce either end and blow out the contents, and keep the shell for our collection.

I remember vividly the utter revulsion of occasionally finding an egg that was half hatched and the bloody flux as we blew out the egg. I knew in those early years I was tampering with God's creation and the gift of life and the feeling of vexation led me to discontinue the hobby.

That early revulsion is multiplied many times when I consider the barbaric acts of doctors, nurses and others who are part of the abortion "industry". Since the 1969 Canadian abortion amendment, the lives of half a million Canadian babies have been wilfully destroyed - more than all the Canadians killed in action in both global wars. In 1981 alone, some 61,000 abortions were performed - about one every 8 minutes of every day of the year.

SERIOUS MORAL ISSUE

"Abortion on demand" is undoubtedly one of the most serious moral issues facing Christians today and it is developing into a most bitter controversy. Henry Morgenthaler (or "morgue-installer" as some prefer to call him) opened 'illegal' abortion clinics in Winnipeg and Toronto and was promptly arrested in both cities and charged. Canadian hospitals, which should be institutions for the alleviation of suffering and the preservation of life, are now heavily involved in the murder of unborn children.

The battle lines are drawn as the various "Pro-Life" and "Pro-Choice" groups debate the pros and cons in a heated and often vitriolic fashion. "Pro-Choice" of course is the latest buzz word of those who favour abortion on demand. Its use is designed to draw attention away from the horrible realities of the abortion procedure and focus on the woman's "right to choose" what to do with her own body.

Into the fray stepped the 'redoubtable' Tom Harpur, thankfully no longer Religion Editor of the Toronto Star. In an article "BIBLE TREATS FETUS AS LESS THAN A PERSON" he took his usual predictable swipe at those who believe the Bible is God's Word and said, "Holy Scripture says nothing about abortion". [6]

Of course the Bible does not say in so many words "Thou shalt not commit abortion" any more than "Thou shalt not smoke". Biblical morality is revealed as a set of clear commands like "Thou shalt not kill". In the absence of the clear command, there are equally clear moral principles laid down from which to draw our moral direction. In the sense that the word I abortion' does not appear the "Holy Scriptures say nothing about abortion" but the teaching of the Bible places great emphasis upon the sanctity of human life, born and unborn, and does form a strong Scriptural basis for the anti-abortion position.

THE NEED FOR ABORTION?

When we speak of abortion, we are referring to the deliberate termination of the life of the unborn child and the first question to be faced is - why is there a need for abortions? Some argue that in a dangerous pregnancy the mother's life comes first and we would concur. Christianity is a religion of love and compassion and is not like Romanism that has tended to place the safety of the unborn child above that of the mother. But cases of dangerous pregnancies are exceedingly rare so the present 'pro-choice' campaign obviously is not on those grounds.

The troubling fact is that most abortions today are merely a method of birth control. Instead of responsible people exercising restraint within the context of the marriage, the present promiscuous age is reaping a fearful harvest of sin. Those who shout loudly for abortion are seldom heard calling for obedience to the seventh commandment "Thou shalt not commit adultery". Adultery in the Bible is described as "an heinous crime" (Job 31:11) and "Villainy" (Jer. 29:23). Adultery is a secret sin committed with mature deliberation. Jeremiah describes the adulterer in terms applicable to a brute beast. "Everyone neighed after his neighbour's wife" (Jer. 5:8). But adultery is worse than brutish because the animal kingdom, devoid of human reasoning ability, follows its instincts and observes some decorum and chastity. Some adulterous humans have debased sexual relationships to a degree unseen anywhere in the animal world.

The sad result of such promiscuity is that abortion is used to wash away the evidence of the scarlet sin and the unborn child is sacrificed on the alter of their secret transgression. Remove adultery and abortion on demand would not be the major problem it has become. (For fuller treatment on the sin of adultery, could I refer you to my book "The Ten Commandments in the Twentieth Century" available from our bookstore at $4.00 including postage and packing.)

Of course, there is the case of the young woman. She suddenly finds that she is pregnant. Her fiancé was not responsible and he is confused and embarrassed. He thinks of hiding her from the public view to escape the shame. By today's standards, she is a prime case for having an abortion. But she didn't go that route. She had her baby and how happy Christians are that Mary brought forth Jesus Christ - the Saviour of the World. [7]

WHEN IS A CHILD A PERSON?

The whole abortion argument hinges on this question. Is the fetus just a piece of tissue or a blob of protoplasm? If it is then it deserves little respect. But if I it is a living human being, then he or she must be granted the same dignity our nation has accorded to every other human person. Even Tom Harpur, who claims the Bible treats the "fetus as less than a person", has to admit "Certainly, this is human life." He scoffs at the idea of applying the command "Thou shalt not kill" to abortion but is hoisted on his own petard when he admits that the fetus is "human life". The Sixth Commandment does apply to abortion.

The Bible teaches great respect for the unborn child. The Psalmist, David, gives a beautiful description of the unborn:

"My substance was not hid from thee, when was made in secret and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect, and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them." Psalm 139:15,16

The second word 'substance', emphasised, is the Hebrew "Golem" and means "embryo". The picture here is of the Great Artist, the Creator, labouring in secret before publicly unveiling His masterpiece created in the image of Himself. The words "curiously wrought" have the meaning of a garment being embroidered with great skill. The Great Embroiderer is weaving such a wonderful tapestry of veins, bones, arteries, muscles and membranes etc. that the Psalmist cries out "I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works". Psalm 139:14. What occurs in the womb is God's handiwork. Wilt thou, O man, break in with thine instruments of death and destroy God's handiwork? It is no coincidence that after the beautiful picture of the unborn the Psalmist is inspired to exclaim: "Surely thou wilt slay the wicked, O God: Depart from me therefore, ye BLOODY MEN." Psalm 139:17.

David also speaks of the plan of God in the unborn. His members were all written in the book of God "when as yet there was NONE OF THEM". The picture is the Great Architect planning the limbs and members of the body when none existed. The Bible thus makes foolishness out of Henry Morgenthaler's statement that to regard the fertilised ovum as a baby is "contrary to all our knowledge; as if someone affirmed that . . . a blueprint was already a house". The difference is that human architects can plan and not bring their designs to fruition but we are dealing not with a human architect but the Divine Architect. What God plans, He fulfils.

David, as a man, had certain needs. He needed a hand tender enough for the lambs of the flock and skilled enough to play his musical instrument to soothe the anguished Saul. That hand had to be accurate enough to sling the stone and strong enough to handle Goliath's huge sword. God, in His divine foreknowledge and predestination brought David forth - planned, produced and perfected according to the will of God. Life is the gift of God and our bodies His handiwork. [8]

GOD OVERSEES THE UNBORN IN THE WOMB

This is clear from David's statements "My substance was not hid from thee" and "Thine eyes did see my substance (embryo)." God saw Jacob and Esau before their birth: "Two nations are in thy womb . . . and the elder shall serve the younger". Gen. 25:23. God saw Samson in the womb "the child shall be a Nazarite to God from the womb". Judges 13:7.

"Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee, and before thou camest forth out of the womb, I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations." Jer. 1: 5.

The case of Jeremiah the prophet is remarkable. Before conception, God knew him. Before his birth, he was set apart for the work of God and ordained to be a prophet. God regarded Jeremiah, Jacob, Esau and Samson as persons before their respective births.

Another remarkable case is John the Baptist. He was named John before conception and when he was a foetus in his mother's womb, he was filled with the Holy Ghost. God regarded John as a person even then. (Luke 1: 13, 15-36, 41, 44).

Paul was converted to Christ as an adult on the road to Damascus but was called to the grace of God from his mother's womb (Gal. 1: 15).


All of these Scriptural instances, and many more, are evidences of the Lord overseeing the unborn. In the womb God is painting a great masterpiece in His own image. In thee counsels of eternity His plan is prepared and from the first stroke of the Great Artist's brush (at conception) human life is sacred. It is a gross sin to destroy God's handiwork either before or after birth. It is a transgression of the sixth commandment "Thou shall not kill". It is a sin that brings judgment of the Almighty.

A GOD OF MERCY

Some of you who read this may have had an abortion, or aided and abetted others to procure an abortion or even performed an abortion. You now realise on the strength of Scriptural testimony that you have been party to murder and have broken the sixth commandment. Your sin is a gross one and deserving of the wrath and judgment of God.

But God is also a God of mercy. Paul was a murderer in the days before his conversion when he persecuted the saints of God even to the death. But he came face to face with Christ and repented of his sin. His sins were pardoned and Paul the persecutor became Paul the preacher.

Why not confess your sin to God just now? Ask the Lord to forgive you and save your soul. Has He not said!

"Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." Rom. 10 -. 17.

Then add your voice to those who are calling for that most basic of human rights - THE RIGHT TO LIFE.

(Reprinted from the Canadian Revivalist, Nov./Dec. 1983)


[9-16 MEDITATIONS FOR THE MONTH]

[17]
DOES GOD SEND TROUBLE? God's Fatherly Discipline
By REV. THEODORE L. CUYLER, D.D.

Thousands of good people have often asked the question, 'Does God send trouble?' That a vast amount of sickness and of sorrow are the direct result of human carelessness and of human disobedience of God's laws is unquestionable. The wages of sin are disease and death. But God's Word also distinctly declares that our Heavenly Father does 'afflict', does 'chasten', does 'correct', and sometimes 'scourgeth' those whom He loves. 'I know, O Lord, that Thy judgements are righteous and' that Thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me' - or, in literal reading of the Hebrew, hast made me suffer. So wrote the ancient Psalmist. Turning to the New Testament we read, 'As many as I love I rebuke and chasten'. Still more emphatically it is declared that 'whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth.' If anything be plainly taught in our Bibles it is that God does often send trouble upon His own beloved children. Through all the centuries past this fact has been recognised in the prayers, the discourses, the conversation, and the experiences of the best men and women. A truly filial faith recognises that our Heavenly Father's dealings with us are right.

JOB

Away back in the ancient times a sorely afflicted patriarch exclaimed, 'The Lord gave and the Lord hath taken away.' These words, 'taken away', are the exact, accurate translation of the Hebrew words, and approved by the learned Westminster revisers of the Old Testament. Job knew that God had a perfect right to take away; for God was the Sovereign Possessor of every inch of those pasture fields, and of every sheep and ox in the herds, and of every child in that house whose 'four corners' had been laid low by the hurricane. Job does not say that the Lord gave and the Sabeans and Chaldeans and the tempest have swept it all away; his sagacious and sublime exclamation is. 'The Lord hath taken away; and blessed be the name of the Lord!' He does not even take refuge in the doctrine of permissive providence - that God did not will to hinder any direct action of what we call the laws of nature. God did it; and Job did not charge God with having acted cruelly or foolishly. [18]

CORRECTION

Just why our Heavenly Father exercises upon his own children a discipline that often seems to us severe, you and I cannot tell. It may have several purposes; one of these is correction. Who knows our faults as well as our all-wise Father? Before the infinite mind of God there rises a complete ideal of what his earthly child might be, and what he will yet be in the perfected estate of heaven. He so deals with us as to bring us nearer to that high ideal. Before the eye of Thorwaldsen there arose a certain conception of the human form of Jesus the Christ; he aimed to realise it, and he applied the chisel to every false line in the statue until he produced that grand marble form which stands in that church in Copenhagen. Our Heavenly Father does not spare the chisel of correction; and some of us know that he cuts deeply and often cuts to the quick. A weak and worthless earthly parent is he who never corrects the faults of his child. Can we suppose that our omniscient and loving Father ever commits so wanton a wrong as to spare His chastening rod and to spoil His earthly child for all the highest purposes of being?

THE GOAL

If we understood more fully what is for our good we would rather say, Father, stay not Thy hand; smite as Thou wilt, prune away what Thou wilt, perfect Thine image in us, and make us more meet for the inheritance of glory! 'Happy is the man whom God correcteth; therefore, despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty.' Our Heavenly Father knows just where to apply the knife, and when He prunes His vines He knoweth just what limbs to lop off in order to increase their fruitfulness. It looks like a ruthless process to drive a plough through a velvet greensward; but the farmer foresees the springing blades of wheat, and that within a few months the torn soil will laugh with a golden harvest. Why should you and cry out in angry remonstrance when God puts the coulter through the subsoil of our selfishness? Afterwards this torn soil may yield the plentiful fruits of the Spirit. Deep ploughing often makes holy harvests. Ah, brethren, there are bitter mercies as well as sweet mercies; but they are all mercies, whether given to us in honey or given in wormwood.

PREVENTION

A further purpose of God's discipline may be prevention. It is against this preventive discipline of His love that our ignorance often rebels most violently. Because we cannot see just what God is saving us from we vent our foolish reproaches; if we could see this we would often thank God sincerely for certain trials as among the richest of His mercies. More than [19] one commercial calamity has come upon a Christian when God foresaw that unbroken prosperity would work spiritual bankruptcy. When He lowered another Christian into a vale of humiliation it was to preserve His child from the dizziness which pride was inducing; and we who have sorrowed most intensely over the departure of the darlings of our homes will assuredly find out in heaven that our Heavenly Father knew just what He was doing, or why He permitted it to happen. From the 'evil to come' He spares the living as well as the dead. I expect when I reach heaven to see where my Father was warding us away from many an unsuspected pitfall and many an unseen precipice. We shall then thank Him for permitting some troubles in order to preserve us from worse troubles.

CHARACTER


I need hardly remind my fellow Christians how often our Heavenly Father employs His discipline for the development of godly character. A boy reared up in indolence and self-indulgence becomes mere pulp. God often lays heavy burdens upon us which He could easily spare us, as far as His power is concerned; but these loads are necessary to give us spiritual sinew. He makes the back equal to the burden. God might keep us, if He would, out of many a heated furnace of affliction. But He is a Refiner, and how furnaces often make bright Christians. When a silver-worker is engaged in purifying his metal he does not consider the process perfected until he can see his own face in the molten silver as in a mirror. So when our Heavenly Purifier can see something of His own image in the chastened soul He is satisfied. The affliction - not joyous, but grievous is working out an exceeding weight of glory.

OTHERS

Sometimes also, we are disciplined for the good of others. More than one pastor has been tried in the fire for the profit of his flock. 'Six weeks of painful and dangerous sickness did more for me than six months in the seminary', said a sagacious and successful minister. Paul rejoiced in the troubles that befell him, and turned them to the furtherance of the gospel.

God keeps a costly school; many of its best lessons are spelled out through tears. Old Richard Baxter said, 'O God, I thank thee for a bodily discipline of eight and fifty years;' and he is not the only man who has turned a trouble into a triumph. This school of our Heavenly Father will soon close for us; the term-time is shortening every day. Let us not shirk a hard lesson, or wince under any rod of chastisement. The richer will be the crown and the sweeter will be the heaven if we endure cheerfully to the end and graduate into glory. [20]

INSIDE INSIGHT: a page of inspirational poetry presented each month by Rhonda Paisley


"YE HAVE NOT PASSED THIS WAY HERETOFORE"

But once I pass this way
And then - no more;
But once - and then the silent door
Swings on its hinges -
Opens - closes - and no more
I pass this way.

Through grace I'll try
While on the road
To take along
To my abode,
Whate'er the cost,
Some stranger lost.

For no man travels twice
The great highway
Through night and day,
From darkness unto light -
Lord, give me might,
Today.

Author unknown

He giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater,
He sendeth more strength when the labours increase;
To added affliction he addeth his mercies,
To multiplied trials his multiplied peace.

When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
When our strength has failed, ere the day is half done,
When we reach the end of our hoarded resources
Our father's full giving is only begun.

His love hath no limit, His grace has no measure,
His power no boundary known to men;
For out of his infinite riches in Jesus
He giveth and giveth and giveth again.

A. J. Flint [21]

"I MOUNT WHERE HE HAS LED"

Time was I shrank from what was right
From fear of what was wrong;
I would not brave the sacred fight,
Because the foe was strong.

But now I cast that finer sense
And sorer shame aside;
Such dread of sin was indolence
Such aim at heaven was pride.

So, when my Saviour calls, I rise
And calmly do my best;
Leaving to him with silent eyes
Of hope and fear, the rest.

I step, I mount where he has led;
Men count my haltings o'er:
I know them; yet though self I dread,
I love His precept more.

John H. Newman

QUIETNESS

"Be still and know that I am God,"
That I who made and gave thee life
Will lead thy faltering steps aright;
That I who see each sparrow's fall
Will hear and heed thy earnest call.
I am God.

"Be still and know that I am God,"
When aching burdens crush thy heart,
Then know I formed thee for thy part
And purpose in the plan I hold.
Thou art the clay that I would mould.
Trust in God.

"Be still and know that I am God,"
Who made the atom's tiny span
And set it moving to my plan,
That I who guide the stars-above
Will guide and keep thee in my love.
Be thou still.

Doran [22]

Report of Special Services in Bethany Free Presbyterian Church, Portadown

The 9th Anniversary of the opening of Bethany Free Presbyterian Church Building was marked by special services at the end of May. The services were conducted by the minister of the congregation, Rev. Kenneth Elliott, and large crowds attended.

The first of the special services was held on Saturday night and took the form of a "Great Evening of Praise". Messages in song were rendered by The Revival Singers; Mr. Joe Peden; The Tullynore Singers and the Rev. William McCrea, M.P. Mr. McCrea was also the guest preacher and brought a challenging and encouraging message from Romans 8:28. During the service a special offering which amounted to 432 was taken for our Calgary Congregation in Canada, and at the conclusion of the proceedings a large congregation was served with a sumptuous supper.

The Sabbath Morning Service in the special series was addressed by the Moderator Dr. Ian R. K. Paisley, M.E.P. Dr. Paisley preached from 2 Kings chapter 2, verses 19-25, and he dealt with two incidents in the life of the prophet Elisha recorded in the passages, i.e. "The Healing of the Waters" and "The Crushing of the Apostates". In preaching a most instructive and challenging message Dr. Paisley declared that the church of Christ must be faithful in both areas of ministry - the preaching of the Gospel of Christ and in contending for the faith.

Mr. Joe Peden was the soloist at the morning service.

In the final service in the series the Rev. Stanley Barnes from Hillsborough Free Presbyterian Church was the special preacher. Another large crowd attended and heard Mr. Barnes give a report on the growth of the work in Hillsborough which necessitated the need of a new Church Building to be erected there.

The Rev. Barnes preached from Ecclesiastes chapter 11, verse 1 and showed that the Christian must be faithful and patient in evangelism, and that God would in due season bring forth a harvest which was longed for. Mr. Joe Peden was again the soloist, and his ministry in song was much appreciated by those who attended each of our Services. [23]

FOR BOYS AND GIRLS - Gentle Jesus, Meek and Mild
Words by Chas. Wesley Music by Mrs. Jos. F. Knapp

Gentle Jesus, meek and mild,
Look upon a little child.

Mr. John B. Gough used to tell the following pathetic story regarding this hymn:

"A friend of mine, seeking for objects of charity, got into the upper room of a tenement house. It was vacant. He saw a ladder pushed through the ceiling. Thinking that perhaps some poor creature had crept up there, he climbed the ladder, drew himself through the hole, and found himself under the rafters. There was no light but that which came through a bull's-eye in the place of a tile. Soon he saw a heap of chips and shavings, and on them a boy about ten years old.

'Boy, what are you doing here?'

'Hush! don't tell anybody, please, sir.'

'What are you doing here?'

'Hush! please don't tell anybody, sir. I'm a hiding.'

'What are you hiding from?'

'Don't tell anybody, please, sir.'

'Where's your mother?'

'Please, sir, mother's dead.'

'Where's your father?' [24]

'Hush! don't tell him! Don't tell him! But look here!'

He turned himself on his face, and through the rags of his jacket and shirt, my friend saw that the boy's flesh was bruised and his skin was broken.

'Why, my boy - who beat you like that?'

'Father did, sir.'

'What did he beat you like that for?'

'Father got drunk, sir, and beat me 'cos I wouldn't steal.'

'Did you ever steal?'

'Yes, sir; I was a street thief once.'

'And why won't you steal any more?'

'Please, sir, I went to the Mission School; and they told me there of God, and of heaven, and of Jesus; and they taught me 'Thou shalt not steal' - and I'll never steal again, if my father kills me for it. But, please, don't tell him!'

'My boy, you mustn't stay here. You'll die. Now you wait patiently here for a little time. I'm going away to see a lady. We will get a better place for you than this.'

'Thank you, sir; but, please, sir, would you like to hear me sing a little hymn?'

Bruised, battered, forlorn, friendless, motherless, hiding away from an infuriated father, he had a little hymn to sing.

'Yes, I will hear you sing your little hymn.' He raised himself on his elbow, and then sang:

Gentle Jesus, meek and mild,
Look upon a little child,
Pity my simplicity,
Suffer me to come to Thee.

Fain I would to Thee be brought,
Gracious Lord, forbid it not:
In the kingdom of Thy grace,
Give a little child a place.

'That's the little hymn, sir. Good-bye.'

The gentleman went away, came back again in less than two hours, and climbed the ladder. There were the chips; and there were the shavings; and there was the boy, with one hand by his side, and the other tucked in his bosom underneath the little ragged shirt - dead.

Oh, I thank God that He who said, 'Suffer little children to come unto Me', did not say 'respectable children', or 'well-educated children'. No! He sends His angels into the homes of poverty and sin, and crime, where you do not like to go, and brings out His redeemed ones; and they are as stars in the crown of rejoicing to those who have been instrumental in enlightening their darkness in the Mission School, in the Ragged School, or in the Bands of Hope." [25]

"LIVING ROOM": A page for women, presented by Eileen Paisley

On two occasions we read of the bag of false weights, Deut. 25:13, and Micah 6: 11. This bag is undoubtedly the property of the Devil, who is always busy in his work of deception. You will recall his "Yea, hath God said?" to Eve in Genesis, and today he is still using this same false weight. For every "positive" in God's word the devil has a negative. For every "Thou shalt" he has a "Thou shalt not". We could label some of his false weights as - There is no God. There is no Hell. The Bible is not true. Live as you like, it won't make any difference.

God's word makes it clear that the devil is a deceiver. Twice in the Psalms, Ps. 14:1 and Ps. 53:1 we read "The fool hath said in his heart there is no God".

Psalm 119:160 tells us, "Thy word is true from the beginning". The Lord Jesus said of Himself, "I am the way, the truth and the life".

Over and over again we have confirmed for us in the word of God that there is a Hell, and the Saviour warned His listeners of this dreadful place.

Romans 14:12 tells us that, "every one of us shall give account of himself to God". [26]

Satan's audacity knows no bounds. He had the temerity to produce his bag of false weights to the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, making promises he could never fulfil. Each time the Lord answered Satan, He preceded His reply with the words, "It is written". We must follow His example and by using the word of God tell Satan to get behind us.

We must all beware of the Devil and his bag. If you are a mother, a Sunday School Teacher, a youth worker, teach your family or your class the word of God. That is the only way you and they can be equipped to refute the deceits of the Devil.

In Luke's Gospel, chapter 12, v. 33, we are given some advice about bags. "Provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in Heaven that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth." The Lord Jesus was speaking to His disciples. They were already believers and followers of His, but this was something they had to do for themselves "provide yourselves bags". As born-again believers we ought to be busy filling our bags with "treasures that fail not". Treasures are not necessarily huge items, and sometimes it is the small things that carry the greatest value. Faithfulness in small things, patience in trials, faith in spite of circumstances, resisting temptations, denying yourself something in order to give to God's work. These are all treasures that fail not.

We will not be able to do this in our own strength, but with the apostle Paul we can say, "I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me' [27]

"The Naked Cross, The Forsaken Tomb, and The Discarded Graveclothes of The Son of God"
A Sermon preached by Dr. Paisley in Martyrs Memorial Free Presbyterian Church on Easter Monday

I want to speak upon three great inter-related topics, One, The Naked Cross; Two, The Forsaken Tomb, and Three, The Discarded Graveclothes. The Naked Cross, The Forsaken Tomb and the Discarded Graveclothes.

The Lord Jesus Christ gave up the Ghost and died upon the Cross in the middle of the afternoon. If you look with me at the thirty-first verse of this nineteenth chapter of John's Gospel you will discover that the hatred of the Jewish Leaders had not abated. The fire of hatred and antagonism to the Incarnate Son of God was still burning fiercely fuelled by the power of Hell itself. They came to Pilate and they said, "Break the legs of the two thieves and of this Jesus of Nazareth; put Him to more suffering, to more shame and to more agony. Let us then see that the bodies are taken away."

Let me say, it was absolutely essential, in order that the whole of the prophetic predictions concerning the Death, the Burial and the Resurrection of Christ should be absolutely and totally fulfilled; that on the day that Jesus was crucified the same day He must be buried, because if He were not buried on that day then the whole significance and authority, and Infallibility of the prophetic Word would be undermined, and Christ would not be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. Christ is hanging upon the Cross, crucifixion was not a speedy way to die; crucifixion was a long drawn out torturous, painful, prolonged way to die, because no vital organ of the body was destroyed by the nailing of hands and the nailing of feet to the Cross, and oftentimes those that were crucified hung upon that Cross for three to four days before they expired, but I want you to notice something, that the Lord Jesus Christ voluntarily gave up the Ghost, He had power to lay down His life and He had power to take it again, but the hatred of the Jewish leaders was so incensed against Him that they said, "Break His legs".

There is something also, however, that must be noted. Turn to the twenty-first chapter of Deuteronomy, and in the twenty-first chapter of Deuteronomy you will discover that the law of God said, "His body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day, that thy land be not defiled". Here is the law of God. Here is God's authoritative decree. Jesus Christ must in life and in death dot every 'I'; stroke every 'T' of God's Infallible law, and He is hanging on a tree, and if the Roman authorities had their way, He would have hung there until the last of the dying thieves had expired. But let me tell you something, that to hang overnight on a tree was for the defilement of the land, but Jesus Christ on [28] His Cross was not there for defilement, He was there for Atonement, and God so ordered the hatred of the Jewish leaders, God so ordered the mind of the Roman Governor, God so ordered the circumstances surrounding the Cross that Jesus Christ would fulfil, not only in life but in death, all the requirements of the Holy, Impregnable law of the Living God.

Four men, a quaternion of soldiers, always carried out a crucifixion, and when they wanted to despatch speedily the person crucified, they took an iron bar, one held one end and the other held the other and they swung that bar out and then smashed it against the legs of their victim until the legs of their victim were nothing less than a conglomeration of broken bones and bleeding flesh and crushed muscles.

Two of the soldiers started with one of the thieves at one side, and two of the soldiers started with the other thief at the other side.

Could I just intervene for one moment and put this in by way of parenthesis, If Jesus Christ had not been dead already it would have been impossible for those two thieves to die. Just think about that, for death cannot reign where the Living Christ is. Only three times did the Living Christ come up against death face to face while He lived, and every time He met death, death gave up its sceptre and bowed in submission to the Prince and Lord of life. He met death face to face in the bedroom of Jairus. The little daughter was there and she was dead, but when the Prince of life came death gave up its sceptre and Jairus's daughter got out of bed and lived. One day a funeral tried to get past the Son of God, the widow of Nain's son was being carried to his burial, but no funeral can get past the Son of God, and that young man arose and walked home from his own funeral. That must have been a wonderful scene. I can see the old Pharisaical undertaker saying, "I'll not get paid for this one, I didn't get him buried". Then the last one, Christ face to face with death. They took away the stone, He is face to face with the stinking, corrupted body of Lazarus, but death had to throw down its sceptre when it met the Son of God.

Instead of breaking the bones, the soldiers fulfilled another Scripture, and a soldier took his spear and pierced His side, and there was a Fountain opened up in the house of David for sin and for all uncleanness, "And they shall look on Him whom they have pierced, and not a bone of Him shall be broken".

Notice carefully that when the Jewish leaders went to Pilate to have the Lord's legs broken and the body taken from the Cross, they didn't say, "Let us bury the body", No sir! Because the bodies of the crucified were thrown into a common pit and there the fowls of the air took them as carrion and pecked off their flesh, and left their bones to bleach in the sun, the strong sun of the eastern sky. No, they were not going to bury Him. Who was going to bury the Son of God?

Even if the disciples had wanted to bury Him they had no grave in Jerusalem, they came from Galilee; their burying place was in the northern province, and how could they carry Him to Galilee and bury Him on the same day in which He died? It was impossible. [29]


There was something else, there was another Scripture and that Scripture is Numbers chapter 19 and verse 9, it is the picture of the red heifer offering, one of the most beautiful and intimate and intricate types of the offering of the Son of God for sinners, and there was a law concerning that offering, you will find it in verse 9, "And a man that is clean shall gather . . ." That is, that is ceremonially clean, has kept the ceremonial law of Moses, No taint of ceremonial defilement on him, "he shall gather up the ashes of the heifer". All that was left after the sacrifice was to be gathered by a man that was ceremonially clean, "and lay them up (Notice it!) without the camp in a clean place". You say, "What is an unclean place?" An unclean place, in Scripture, is anywhere a dead body has rested, under the Mosaic law. So it was essential that Christ was buried outside the camp. It was essential that He was buried in a clean place. Ah, but thank God, when I turn to John's Gospel chapter 19, 1 read, "A new sepulchre wherein was never man laid".

If the Lord Jesus had been buried in a sepulchre where some other dead body had rested, then in death the ceremonial law would have been violated, but there was a tomb already prepared in the foreordination and foreknowledge of God where never man lay. Joseph of Arimathaea had cut out the tomb for himself, it was to be for himself, but little did he know when he cut through the stone that prepared that burial place that he was fulfilling the words of Isaiah chapter 53, "He made His grave with the wicked, and with the rich in His death". Hallelujah! God's Book is eternally and unshakeably true.

There is something else. It must be a clean man that does the job. You could not have had two cleaner men in all Jerusalem, as far as the ceremonial law of God was concerned, than Joseph of Arimathaea and Nicodemus, both members of the Sanhedrin; both rigid and strong believers in all the ceremonial of the Mosaic ritual. But there was one thing that now stands in the way. What is it? Their timidness, for was not Joseph of Arimathaea a secret disciple? Did not Nicodemus steal by night to talk to the Lord, away from the public scrutiny of his brethren, his neighbours and his friends? Something happened. A miracle was wrought in their hearts and Joseph became a bold man, he went in boldly and craved the body of Jesus, and Nicodemus came openly with a hundred pounds of precious ointment, what to do? To anoint the Body of the Son of God.

I want to tell you something, that once you touched a dead body you were defiled.

God gave these men something that day, they saw that they didn't need to eat the Passover now; they saw they didn't need to fulfil the ritual of the Mosaic law; that their defilement was not defilement at all, rather it was atonement, they had found the secret that Christ had died for them. That was what gave them power.

There is far more in this passage of Scripture, friend, than meets the eye. We need to study it and dig deep into it.

They came and they took down the Body of Christ. Would you please notice that the Body of Christ was subject to attack by the hands of ungodly [30] men until He died, and immediately Christ died, there was never another polluted hand ever put on the Body of Christ.

It was the hands of two believers that brought Him down from the Cross. It was to believing women that He stretched forth His feet, and He said, "Behold, my hands and my feet!" It was to Thomas the doubter, though a believer, that He said, "Put your finger into the nailprints and thrust it into my side". I'm glad today that I can say from this pulpit that filthy hands of unbelievers will never again touch or molest the Precious Body of my Lord. His work is done. His association with sin is finished, He will appear a second time without sin unto salvation.

So they laid Him in that tomb.

Very very briefly could I say, no human eye saw Christ in the agonies of His Death. God put a circle of darkness around that Cross. All men heard was the cry from out of the centre of the darkness of that inexplicable, unimaginable and undefinable storm of fury, "My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me?", and that other cry, "I thirst". Then the storm was over, the cry was, "It is finished", and, thank God, He died. No eye - no human eye saw Jesus in the midst of His Atoning for my sin. "He tread the winepress of God's wrath alone". Nobody saw Him. Nobody saw the Lord Jesus rise from the dead. Early in the morning on the first day of the week there was a stirring in that sepulchre of Joseph. The Divine, Human Personality of God the Son came down again to tabernacle in that Body.

My friend, no one saw the Coming of the Son of God into the body in the Virgin's womb, that was secretive, mystical and concealed, and no one saw the Coming again of the great God the Son in His Human nature still intact, for He was the Godman taking into union with His Deity and our humanity, and enters again into that Body. What happened? He rose through the graveclothes, He rose through the rocky construction of that tomb. He rose gloriously, triumphantly and, praise God, Everlastingly. He will never die again, He will never lie in death again, Hallelujah! Christ arose!

He left that tomb, it was a forsaken tomb. Only three times in the Old Testament, as far as I can see, have we perfect pictures of the Resurrection. We have a perfect picture of the Resurrection and the third day with Isaac. Turn to Hebrews chapter 1, and you will see there that Isaac is a type of the Resurrection. Verse 19, "Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead, from whence also he received him in a figure".

If you turn to Genesis chapter 22 you will find it was the third day that he received him in a figure, verse 4, "Then on the third day". Three days before the sentence of death had gone out on Isaac. On the third day he walked down the mountain. A perfect type of resurrection.

There is another type of resurrection in the Bible. Jonah three days and three nights in the heart of the fish. You know, there is a law in the Scripture, it is the law of the first mention. Where is the third day first mentioned? It is mentioned in Genesis chapter 1, and you have a perfect picture of resurrection, "On the third day" God rolled back the waters and dry land appeared. Suddenly the mountains, the hills, the valleys, the [31] continents popped up their heads above the waves that covered the whole earth. That was a sign of resurrection, but it is a double sign because immediately after God talked about the tree, Verse 11, "And the tree and the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, and the earth brought forth grass, and the herb yielding seed, and the tree yielding fruit". There is another picture of the resurrection. In verse 2 God didn't say, 'He saw that it was good". On the second day there is no mention of God saying it was good. There is a reason for that, for on the second day God created the firmament, and the devil is the prince of the power of the air, and immediately the firmament was created the devil occupied it, God couldn't say it was good, but on the third day God says, it was good. We have a perfect picture of the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Could I just finish? The Lord left the graveclothes behind Him. When the Jews buried they wrapped the body in linen and they laid layers of spices on the linen, then they wrapped it again and laid another layer of spices on it. One hundred pounds of ointment, and when that ointment solidified the body was like in a plaster of paris, and to get out of that a person would need a lot of help. That is why the Lord said to the friends of Lazarus, "Loose him, he needs help to get out of the graveclothes. Tear them off him and let him go".

When they walked into the tomb of Jesus the graveclothes were still there lying in the very shape in which He was wrapped. When the Jews buried they laid the body in the tomb and the head was raised up and rested on a higher pillow of stone. It says, "The napkin was by itself, but it was still in its folds. In a place by itself". Jesus rose through the graveclothes. You know why? Because He doesn't need the shroud of death.

The Church of Rome says they have got the shroud. Jesus Christ left the shroud forever. We don't need a rag or relic of a grave, we have got the Living Christ enthroned within our hearts.

There was a man called Joseph, a perfect type of the Lord in death. He met two men in the prison house. One was free and the other was condemned.

Jesus met two men in the place of death. He saved one dying thief, and the other went to Hell.

What does it say concerning Joseph? When the king commanded Joseph to be brought forth he changed his garments. Joseph left the old garment of imprisonment in the tomb, and he went out to stand before the king's throne in a new garment.

Praise God, the old garments of death shall never touch the Body of the Son of God again. He has come forth in garments of glory and He appears this moment in the presence of God for us.

The Cross is naked. The tomb is forsaken, and the graveclothes are discarded, for Jesus Christ is alive for ever more. Hallelujah! What a Saviour and what a Salvation!

AMEN AND, AMEN!