Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Thy Mark On Me

Thy Mark On Me
Gregg Metalf
August 16, 2017

In spirit poor I came to Christ,
I claimed His cross as mine;
 now my death I gladly owned,
as I bask in love so divine.

My sin His blood did wash away,
clean now am I forever more;
behind Him He did throw my sin,
a crown of shame for me He bore.

Pierced His hands did the nails,
fastening Him to Calvary's tree;
spikes thrust deep into the wood,
held Him in place, died He for me.

My guilt, my shame, my penalty,
laid full on Him, for in my stead;
satisfied the Father's abundant wrath,
 took He my place among the dead.

No price did you deign demand,
but abounding grace given free;
you took me for your very own
and have placed Thy mark on me.






Tuesday, August 15, 2017

God Glorified in Man's Dependence

Gospel Driven Disciples periodically posts some highlights from the prolific works of Jonathan Edwards. The following excerpt is taken from his sermon entitled God Glorified in Man’s Dependence, preached on the Public Lecture in Boston, July 8th, 1731.

I Corinthians 1:29-31 - “…so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. And because of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that as it is written, ‘Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.’” (ESV)

THOSE Christians to whom the apostle directed this epistle, dwelt in a part of the world where human wisdom was in great repute; as the apostle observes in the 22nd verse of this chapter, "The Greeks seek after wisdom." Corinth was not far from Athens, that had been for many ages the most famous seat of philosophy and learning in the world. The apostle therefore observes to them, how God by the gospel destroyed, and brought to nought, their wisdom. The learned Grecians, and their great philosophers, by all their wisdom did not know God, they were not able to find out the truth in divine things. But, after they had done their utmost to no effect, it pleased God at length to reveal himself by the gospel, which they accounted foolishness. He " chose the foolish things of the world to confound the wise, and the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty, and the base things of the world, and things that are despised, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought the things that are." And the apostle informs them in the text why he thus did, That no flesh should glory in his presence, etc.- In which words may be observed,

1. What God aims at in the disposition of things in the affair of redemption, viz. that man should not glory in himself, but alone in God; That no flesh should glory in his presence, --that, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.

2. How this end is attained in the work of redemption, viz. by that absolute and immediate dependence which men have upon God in that work, for all their good. Inasmuch as,

First, All the good that they have is in and through Christ; He is made unto us wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption. All the good of the fallen and redeemed creature is concerned in these four things, and cannot be better distributed than into them; but Christ is each of them to us, and we have none of them any otherwise than in him. He is made of God unto us wisdom: in him are all the proper good and true excellency of the understanding. Wisdom was a thing that the Greeks admired; but Christ is the true light of the world; it is through him alone that true wisdom is imparted to the mind. It is in and by Christ that we have righteousness: it is by being in him that we are justified, have our sins pardoned, and are received as righteous into God's favour. It is by Christ that we have sanctification: we have in him true excellency of heart as well as of understanding; and he is made unto us inherent as well as imputed righteousness. It is by Christ that we have redemption, or the actual deliverance from all misery, and the bestowment of all happiness and glory. Thus we have all our good by Christ, who is God.

Secondly, Another instance wherein our dependence on God for all our good appears, is this, That it is God that has given us Christ, that we might have these benefits through him; he of God is made unto us wisdom, righteousness, etc.

Thirdly, It is of him that we are in Christ Jesus, and come to have an interest in him, and so do receive those blessings which he is made unto us. It is God that gives us faith whereby we close with Christ.

So that in this verse is shown our dependence on each person in the Trinity for all our good. We are dependent on Christ the Son of God, as he is our wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption. We are dependent on the Father, who has given us Christ, and made him to be these things to us. We are dependent on the Holy Ghost, for it is of him that we are in Christ Jesus; it is the Spirit of God that gives faith in him, whereby we receive him, and close with him.

Monday, August 14, 2017

It Is Not OK to remain not OK

Timothy Keller tweeted this today:

"Grace means that it is OK that we are not OK."

First, let me say I do not know what the allurement is or why so many people seem to be enamoured with this guy. I have read some of his writings and not sure he has both oars in the water. 

Second, I agree with Phil Johnson of Grace Community Church, Sun Valley, CA when he responded with, "That flatly contradictsTitus 2:1-14.

Third, The following paragraph is my response to this tweet:

The Apostle Paul argued against that thinking, when he asked the rhetorical question should we continue in sin because grace abounds. I will not judge his motive, but the statement clearly alleviates responsibility for the mortification of sin, growth in grace and Christ-likeness. It lends credibility to remaining and excusing our brokenness.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Jonah Does the Unenvied (Part 2)



Sermon:               GM17-155

Series:                  Jonah: A Gospel of Grace

Subtitle:               Jonah Does the Unenvied (Part 2)

Scripture:            Jonah 3:5-9

Subject:               Jonah uses four illustrations of God’s grace to motivate his readers to repent of their sin

Scrutiny:              How does God demonstrate His grace?

Solution:              There are four ways in this passage that demonstrates the display of God’s grace

Sketch:                 1A     through the renewal of the commission (1-2) God gives Jonah a second chance to obey him. Throughout Scripture God is portrayed as a God of a second chance.                         

2A     through the response of the courier (3-4) Jonah obeys God’s call the second time. He travels to Nineveh as a living testimony of God’s grace. Jonah proclaims the Word of God to the Ninevites.

3A     through the repentance of the citizens (5-9) The citizens of Nineveh believed the Word of God proclaimed by Jonah. From the King to the lowest citizen they demonstrate their repentance by their attitude and their actions. Everyone, including the animals wear the outward signs of inward repentance.

4A     through the restraint of the creator (10) God observes the attitude and the actions of the Ninevites. God chooses to relent from performing His judgment upon the citizens and the city.

Scheme:               To provide examples of God’s grace as motivation to repent of sin in order to maintain a right relationship with God

Statement:           God is gracious

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Christians and the Game of Thrones

Disclaimer:  This is a post copied from Kevin DeYoung's blog which is part of The Gosepl Coalition. These are his words, but I agree with what he has written.
game-of-thronesThis will not be a long post. Because the issue doesn’t seem all that complicated.
I don’t understand Christians watching Game of Thrones.
Whenever there is a new episode, my Twitter feed overflows with people talking about Game of Thrones. First off, I’m always amazed that this many people have HBO. But second, and much more importantly, I’m always amazed that a number of people I respect--smart people, serious Christians, good conservative thinkers--are obviously watching (and loving) the series.
True, I haven’t seen it. Not an episode. Not a scene. I hardly know anything about the show. I know many people consider it absolutely riveting--full of compelling characters, an engrossing story, and excellent acting, writing, and aesthetics.
But isn’t it also full of sex? Like lots and lots of incredibly graphic sex? I did a Google search for “Game of Thrones sex” and found headlines (I avoided images and only read headlines) about sex scenes you can’t un-see and the best sex scenes of the series and why Game of Thrones is so committed to nudity and explicit (sometimes violent) sex. Unless I’m mistaken, the series hasn’t taken a turn toward modesty in recent months. It seems to me sensuality--of a very graphic nature--is a major part of the series. And still, a good number of conservative Christians treat the series as must-see TV.
I don’t get it.
I won’t repeat what John Piper has already written. His twelve questions are well worth asking, not only for this show, but for all our entertainment choices. I just want to ask one other question: Does anyone really think that when Jesus warned against looking at a woman lustfully (Matt. 5:27), or when Paul told us to avoid every hint of sexual immorality and not even to speak of the things the world does in secret (Eph. 4:3-12), that somehow this meant, go ahead and watch naked men and women have (or pretend to have) sex?
I know some people will say it doesn’t bother their conscience or that it’s art or they can view sinful sex without participating in it themselves. But that doesn’t change what the Bible says about the importance of purity and the power of the eye. The fact is our consciences should be smitten; steamy sex scenes are not the kind of art for which we can give thanks; and it’s hard to imagine Paul would have been cool with the believers in Ephesus watching simulated sex for a fee each month, so long as they don’t hook up in real life.
I don’t expect those who are strangers to the light to be bothered by the darkness. But for conservative Christians who care about marriage and immorality and decency in so many other areas, it is baffling that Game of Thrones gets a free pass. “Look carefully then how you walk,” is God’s word to all of us, “not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil” (Eph. 5:15-16).

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Jonah Does the Unenvied (Part 1)


Sermon:               GM17-154

Series:                  Jonah: A Gospel of Grace

Subtitle:               Jonah Does the Unenvied (Part 1)

Scripture:            Jonah 3:1-10

Subject:               Jonah uses four illustrations of God’s grace to motivate his readers to repent of their sin

Scrutiny:              How does God demonstrate His grace?

Solution:              There are four ways in this passage that demonstrates the display of God’s grace

Sketch:                 1A     through the renewal of the commission (1-2) God gives                Jonah a second chance to obey him. Throughout Scripture                God is portrayed as a God of a second chance.                         

2A     through the response of the courier (3-4) Jonah obeys God’s call the second time. He travels to Nineveh as a living testimony of God’s grace. Jonah proclaims the Word of God to the Ninevites.

3A     through the repentance of the citizens (5-9) The citizens of Nineveh believe the Word of God proclaimed by Jonah. From the King to the lowest citizen they demonstrate their repentance by their attitude and their actions. Everyone, including the animals wear the outward signs of inward repentance.

4A     through the restraint of the creator (10) God observes the attitude and the actions of the Ninevites. God chooses to relent from performing His judgment upon the citizens and the city.

Scheme:               To provide examples of God’s grace as motivation to repent of sin in order to maintain a right relationship with God

Statement:           God is gracious


Saturday, August 5, 2017

Trees and Forests: Getting Lost in the Details


Martin Lloyd-Jones once wrote of the Roman believers:


"...they have lost their balance and have developed a kind of lop-sided Christianity. This is indeed an all-important matter in connection with the Christian life. One of the greatest dangers is to be so absorbed in, and concerned about, particulars and details as to forget the whole."


--from Liberty and Conscience, 
Exposition of Romans 14:1-17, 
page 205

Friday, August 4, 2017

Tolle Lege! Tolle Lege!

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"Let us, then, take our Bibles afresh and resolve by God's grace henceforth to make full use of them. Let us read them with reverence and humility, seeking the illumination of the Holy spirit. Let us meditate on them till our sight is clear and our souls are fed. Let us live in obedience to God's will as we find it revealed to us in Scripture; and the Bible will prove itself both a lamp to our feet and a light upon our path."


(J. I. Packer, Beyond the Battle for the Bible)

Thursday, August 3, 2017

The Foolishness of Ungodly Men

"The fool has said in his heart, 'There is no God.' They are corrupt, they have done abominable works. There is none who does good. The LORD looks down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there are any who understand, who seek God. They have all turned aside, they have become corrupt; there is no who does good, no not one." [Psalm 14:1-3, NKJV]

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Read for Quality Not Quantity


"Some people imagine that if they read so many chapters of the Bible every day, it will be much to their profit—but it is not so if the reading is a mere mechanical exercise. It will be far better to read a tenth as much and weigh it, and let it take possession of brain and heart.”

—1891, Sermon #2184 Spurgeon

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Jonah Experiences the Unequaled (Part 3)



Sermon:     GM17-153

Tag:           Jonah: A Gospel of Grace

Title:           Jonah Experiences the Unequaled (Part 3)

Text:           Jonah 2:8-10

Theme:       Jonah composes a Psalm

Theory:      The gracious compassion of the salvation of God compelled Jonah to compose a psalm of thanksgiving and praise

Target:       To provide God’s people with the motivation to praise when they find themselves “saved” or “delivered” by God

Monday, July 24, 2017

Blog Distractions

I am so sorry I have been negligent in keeping my blog. I have allowed the study of Jonah, the pursuit of readings, and some other things distract me. For some reason I have very little motivation right now. I know I am discouraged and could use your prayers.

Some things that have kept me away from my blog are:


  • the visit of my mother and father and sister from Austin, TX
  • A short quick trip to Lynden, WA to visit my other sister and her family

  • the study of Jonah
  • the visit of my mother-in-law and niece from Alaska
  • the visit of my daughter and her family including the twins from Illinois
  • a trip to San Jose, CA for my mother-in-law's 86 birthday
  • supervising the design and building of a outside deck
  • the Rockford Files DVDs
  • reading four (4) books at once. I have finished two but have about 2 dozen more to go.
So, I ask you to please forgive me and to pray for me. It is not like me to be discouraged and for so long of a time.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

How Are You Treating God's Ear?

  1. Prayer delights God’s ear; it melts His heart; and opens His hand. God cannot deny a praying soul.
Thomas Watson


Friday, June 23, 2017

Defend Your Soul!

Image result for armor of god"Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil." [Ephesians 6:11]

Satan attacks the children of God. Satan is a very formidable, subtle, and intelligent enemy. We must be on guard against him, his attacks, and his schemes at all times.

Satan will attack God's people in various ways at the most inopportune times. These attacks come when we are usually the most vulnerable. The following are some of the times that you must be on guard in order not to be overcome by temptation, sin, or the schemes of Satan:

  • When we are undergoing some type of sickness, weakness, or affliction
  • When we are going about our daily life and activities with little proactive protection against his schemes and fiery darts.
  • When we are busy and actively serving God in some capacity
  • When we have opened ourselves up to temptation by locality, opportunity, object, or vulnerability. (i.e. if we are tempted to lust, we seek out in various places things which titillate our lusts)
  • When we are being tried, tested, or troubled
This list is not exhaustive as you will imagine. It is only a guide to stimulate the thinking on protecting oneself from the attacks of Satan by the continual putting on of the armor of God. There is no "force-field" surrounding us that automatically keeps temptation from "bouncing" off and away. You must be proactive.

Someone once said, "Most Christians flee from temptation. The trouble is that they almost always leave a forwarding address." Put on the armor of God, utilize it, and defend your soul against the temptation to sin. Remember, it is no sin to be tempted. The sin comes when temptation is allowed to give birth to sin.

Monday, June 19, 2017

To God Be The Glory!

Thanks to all of you who promised to pray for me last night. The preaching of God's Word at the Trinity Bible Church of Portland to His blood bought children went well. The power of God, the presence of God, and the peace of God were abundantly present. Thank you, and to God be the glory! Please continue to pray that God will graciously reveal His next assignment for me (soon)! 

Sunday, June 18, 2017

The Reason for Remembering




GMT17-058

Title:           The Reason for Remembering

Text:           I Corinthians 11:24c & 25d

Subj:           Remembrance

Prop:          I propose to you that the memory of the death of Christ is to spur you on to courageous obedience and faithfulness

Obj:            My purpose tonight is to demonstrate the relevance of remembering the death of Jesus Christ in order for it to effectively spur you on to courage and faithfulness as you await the return of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

P. A. S. T. E.

Image result for acronyms

I developed an acronym the other day as part of my meditation process on Scripture. I know that there are a number of them available but I think this is helpful for me to pull out various truths or principles from a passage. I then pray as part of my application process using this little guide. As Rod Serling use to say, "I submit it for your approval." Hope it is helpful!

P - Promise to Claim

A - Attitude to Change

S - Sin to Confess

T - Truth to Consider

E - Example to Copy

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Jonah Experiences the Unequaled Part 2



Sermon:     GM17-152

Tag:           Jonah: A Gospel of Grace

Title:           Jonah Experiences the Unequaled (Part 2)

Text:           Jonah 2:2-7

Theme:       Jonah composes a Psalm

Theory:      The gracious compassion of the salvation of God compelled Jonah to compose a psalm of thanksgiving and praise

Target:       To provide God’s people with the motivation to praise when they find themselves “saved” or “delivered” by God

Friday, May 26, 2017

Five Steps to Meditate on Scripture

Image result for meditation on scripture

Psalm 1:1-2 tell us; "Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; but his delight is in the law of the LORD. and in His law he meditates day and night." (NKJV)

Meditation can be difficult and more believers struggle with meditation  than they should. Yet, the Scripture tells us that the "man" (person) who meditates on God's word is blessed, or has the favor of God upon them. Therefore, it behooves a believer to meditate on God's word.

Meditation is not a deep and dark dungeon that we have to traverse in order to reap the wonderful benefits of obedience. Let me give you a few suggestions that might help you get started and to develop a life long practice of meditation upon God's wonderful Word.


Five Steps for Meditation on Scripture

  • Police - limit the portion of scripture to one verse, a portion of a verse, or even a single word. To much Scripture can make meditation difficult or impossible. Your devotion or quiet time is not the time for your annual Bible reading plan.
  • Pinpoint - observe and define key words (use Greek/English Dictionaries if needed); determine the key idea or main thought
  • Probe - dig deep by asking questions, use "My Six Little Friends;" Who, What, When, Where, How, and Why"
  • Pray - for enablement to implement the key idea 
  • Practice - Be a doer of the Word and not merely a hearer

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Remember the God of the Bible

Today, most of us are privileged to gather together with a segment of the body of Christ and worship the one true and living God. We are called together to give praise to God and to exhort one another. As you prepare to gather, let me share some words with you from Richard D. Phillips, from his commentary on the Old Testament Book of Jonah:

"If our primary concern in worship is our consumer preferences rather than the God whose name we praise, if we gaze on the wicked around us and see mainly a threat to our Christian lifestyles instead of perishing sinners in need of the gospel, and if we pray for forgiveness of our sins but justice for the agents of a wicked culture, then it cannot be doubted that the Pharisaical spirit of Jonah is in us...Jonah's resentment reveals a deep ignorance of God. He understood the Lord as his God and Israel's God but not the God of Nineveh." 

Whom do you understand this morning as you gather with the body of Christ?

(taken from Jonah & Micah, Reformed Expository Commentary, p. 8)

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Throwing Stones and Barking Dogs

Please accept my apologies for being slack in posting lately. I am truly sorry and beg your forgiveness. I have been distracted lately due to the following things:
     dog and Animated gif
  • I am not happy with the outlining and development of the second part of our study in Jonah. As a result I have ordered some additional tools and am actually starting over on chapter two of Jonah.
  • My sister, Mother and Father unexpectedly drove up from Austin, Texas and spent a few days with us. We had a great visit. It has been quite some time since I saw my folks. God has been so good to them; my Dad is 85 and my Mom is 83 and they are strong in mind and body, in excellent health, and in great spirits. 
  • We drove up to Lynden, WA (top of WA state on the Canadian border) to visit my sister Nancy, brother-in law, Emmet. We were able to see our niece, Jessica and her new baby boy, Emmet. We spent a couple of days up there. 
  • We celebrated Bryttany Lynn's 19th birthday. (She is our granddaughter, Sonja's girl. Our third grandchild turned 19! Oh my, where did the time go?
  • We are actually enjoying streamlining some old movies on Netflix on our new Smart TV.
Once I get Jonah, chapter two re-outlined I hope to resume regular posts. Thanks for being patient with me! 

Winston Churchill once remarked, "You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks." So, I guess I need to stop throwing stones at barking dogs, huh?

Sunday, April 30, 2017

A Guide to A Personal Quiet Time


Since I have put our study of Jonah on hold, I thought for today at least, that I would share with you my pattern, or system, or manner of my personal devotion. I do so for at least three (3) reasons:

  • I believe a regular personal devotion or quiet times is a major means of growing and/or developing spiritually
  • I am cognizant of the fact that many believers struggle with how to have a meaningful and beneficial devotion
  • I, myself, function far better with a pattern or guide to follow
Let me say, this is only a way and not the only way, or the end of all ends for use in your personal quiet time of devotion. I share only in hopes that you might find it useful and beneficial to you.

My pattern for my quiet time consists of three (3) main areas:

WORSHIP

I begin my time with prayer and worship of God. My worship in my devotion consists of four (4) parts:
  • Praise - praise God for who He is. I take a single attribute each morning and praise God for that attribute
  • Adoration - I tell God how much I love Him. He is my Father and I am His son.
  • Thanksgiving - Thank Him for what He has done. Find at least one thing to thank God for specifically and specially each day.
  • Hymn - I praise God by singing or reciting a hymn, Psalm, or spiritual song to God. Listen, He said make a joyful noise, not a symphonic noise!

From my Worship portion of my quiet time, I move to what I called the...

WORD

I use a method I came across sometime ago called the "SOAP" formula. First, choose a book of the bible, and begin reading, meditating, and praying through it. Read approximately one (1) to six (6) or seven (7) verses slowly, carefully, prayerfully, and earnestly. Do not try to read a chapter or too much - you won't be able to meditate on it. Your quiet time is not the time to do your annual bible reading plan. The SOAP method goes like this:

S - the scripture passage for the day
O- any and all observations that you derive from the passage
A- any and all applications that apply directly to you
P - pray through the passage & pray for compliance with the passage principle thought or key truth

Buy a good journal and record these truths, principles, observations, applications and prayer. Write it down!

After worship, and the word, it is now time for what I call the:

WALK

After I have read, prayed, and meditated on the passage I use the following five (5) questions to help me arrive at the specific application for my life.
  • What is the key or principle thought of the passage?
  • What is a short yet concise summary of the passage?

  • What way does this passage apply directly to me?
  • What do I need to change or do to comply with this passage?
  • What is my specific plan to change or to comply?

I hope this pattern or guide is helpful to you. Please do not become a slave to it or to any plan. These things are always guides meant to assist not to imprison. 

I hope you will utilize some or all parts of this plan for at least three (3) reasons:
  • If you fail to plan, you plan to fail
  • If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time
  • I want you to grow in the grace & the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18)

Friday, April 28, 2017

Jonah Put On Temporary Hold

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Having come to a passage in Jonah that I am having a difficult time in determining the meaning, I have decided to put Jonah on a temporary hold.

I have recently come into the possession of a wonderful bibliography of works on Jonah. After reading it over a couple of times I have decided to order a couple of more commentaries on the book of Jonah for some assistance. Unfortunately it can take up to three weeks for these to travel by media mail.

I am not sure what I will post as the Sunday Sermon, but hopefully, I will think of something!

Please forgive any inconvenience that this postponement might cause. 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Does Prayer Really Move the Hand of God?

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Last night at our mid-week bible study someone made this statement, 'Prayer moves the hand of God.' The individual was quite confident & comforted in this idea.

Quite frankly, I think if you ask the majority of believers they would think and say the same thing. However, I don't think we:

  • cause God to move or work contrary to His eternal purpose
  • cause God to change His mind in regards to something He has previously and more than likely eternally purposed
  • cause God to respond in the manner of an servant or slave to our desires and/or wishes

Although I should have said something I didn't. After I got home his statement continued to rattle around in my head and I formed a single thought about his statement.

I am not sure that prayer in fact moves the hand of God at all, as much as I am convinced that prayer moves the heart of man to the will and purpose of God. I think prayer is the means by which we, God's children, commend ourselves to the "hands of God" in order to submit and acquiesce to His purposes for our lives.



Monday, April 24, 2017

Book Review: The Ragamuffin Gospel

Title:  The Ragamuffin Gospel
Author:  Brennan Manning
Publisher:  Multnomah
General Subject Matter:  Christian Living, the Gospel 
First Copyright:  1990
Type:  Hardback
Price:  US $19.99/25.99 CAN
Image result for the ragamuffin gospelISBN: 978-1-60142-868-4

The purpose of The Ragamuffin Gospel is to provide the reader with a different image of an individual’s relationship with God in juxtaposition to the popular concept of God’s acceptance of individuals. The author gives us his purpose statement in the section he has entitled, “A Word Before.” The author states that the purpose of the book is to bring comfort to what he calls “the bedraggled, beat-up, and burnt out.”
The theme of The Ragamuffin Gospel is that salvation or redemption is not earned by anything that an individual can do. However, the author does not seem to have an understanding of the true gospel revealed in the Scriptures.
This book propagates a false gospel. The author was a defrocked Roman Catholic priest. He has written extensively on subjects that have been deemed to be heretical by main stream Christianity.
There are several problems within this book. I will list some problems without developing them either from the author’s viewpoint or from a Scriptural refutation.
In relation to salvation there is no mention of repentance, there is no reference to a new birth or regeneration as outlined in the Scriptures. The author promotes a type of special “sealing” that takes place during infant baptism.
Additional problems with this book include the author’s approach to redemption and sanctification from a psychological viewpoint. A major problem is the fact that Manning quotes from false teachers and philosophers such as Paul Tillich, Carl Jung, Beatrice Bruteau, Henri Nouwen, Thomas Merton, Francis MacNutt and others.
An example of his false teaching is found on page 120 of his book where Manning states, “To evangelize a person is to say to him or her: you, too, are loved by God in the Lord Jesus.” (The Ragamuffin Gospel, 2nd edition, 2000, p. 120). This is not the gospel. It is not the way to evangelize those who do not know the Lord Jesus Christ. The gospel includes that fact that men are loved by God, but they are dead in trespasses and sins and must put their trust in the atoning work of Jesus Christ on the cross of Calvary.

There was nothing about this book that I liked or could recommend. It is amazing that this book was published and more amazing that it has found a “reception” in mainstream Christianity.
________________________________________________ 
I received a free copy of The Ragamuffin Gospel for this review. I received nothing else nor was I required to give a positive review. This review is my own thoughts and opinions.