Christ Is the Exclusive Saviour

by Mike Ratliff

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.” Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” (John 14:1-7 ESV)

I received a very nice email today from a very well known Bible teacher who is a fellow victim of slash and burn heretic who attempted to shut me down several years ago. The email stated that this heretic had listed him and his ministry right along side mine as examples of “heathen reprobates” who are leading God’s people astray. Why? Because we hold to the doctrine of justification by faith by God’s grace alone. I remember the several day encounter with this heretic’s cult and many of you may as well for if you dared to comment on what I posted then you received emails from them as well. In any case, what is noticeably missing in all cults is the correct emphasis on the necessity of the Cross of Christ and, therefore, a total misapplication of Him as our Exclusive Saviour.  Continue reading

Might the Evangelical Church be on the Verge of a Gay Awakening?

by Mike Ratliff

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. (Romans 1:18-27 ESV)

This ministry exists solely by the grace of God. I do not depend on donations or advertisers to keep things going. I work for a living and this site is maintained on so it is free. I spend time and prayer and effort in it of course, but I do not depend upon the financial support of others to keep things going. However, I have friends who minister full time and those who depend upon advertisers to keep their radio shows on the air, et cetera always have that threat of having that money pulled away as pressure comes to bear for various reasons. I heard from a friend today who lost two advertisers who told him they had received numerous complaints about his stance on homosexuality in the church and so they were pulling their advertising dollars from his ministry. Of course, those very same people who were calling in the complaints also hacked into his web site and did major damage to it. All of this was done by certain people who claim to be Christians that insist on the unconditional love of Jesus for all. I guess that love only goes to those who support their agenda of gay affirmation in the visible church. Continue reading

Preach the Gospel or Be the Gospel?

by Mike Ratliff

Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:16-20 ESV)

The passage above (Matthew 28:16-20) is best known as our Lord Jesus’ Great Commission to the Church. This is what we are to be about. I heard a survey taken at a Christian bookseller’s convention not very long ago in which one of the questions asked was something like, “Is the Great Commission best fulfilled by preaching the Gospel or by Christians ‘being the Gospel?’” Well over half of the answers given were affirmative for the latter rather than the former. That was not surprising after the rest of the survey results were revealed though. The overall lack of depth of real Bible knowledge and doctrine in that group was indeed telling. From that discussion it became apparent that most of those responding to the survey actually believed that their performance as Christians had more to do with evangelism than actually preaching the Gospel itself. This started me thinking…  Continue reading

Proper Christian Growth

With last night’s post, The Right Attitudes Concerning Prayer, fresh in my mind and heart, I was amazed this morning when I opened my Tabletalk magazine to the January 6, 2011 devotional titled Proper Christian Growth. I thought about adapting it to a second post somehow, but finally decided to simply post it intact below. I pray that it blesses you as it blessed me. Continue reading

Peter’s Sermon at Pentecost

by Mike Ratliff

14 But Peter, standing with the eleven, lifted up his voice and addressed them: “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words.

15 For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day.

16 But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel:

17 “‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams;

18 even on my male servants and female servants in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy.

19 And I will show wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below, blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke;

20 the sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day.

21 And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’ (Acts 2:14-21 ESV)

Thus began the Apostle Peter’s sermon following the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost just 10 days following our Lord’s Ascension. I am going to walk through this sermon with you so that we can see how the Gospel works when preached with power and with the right focus. Who is being glorified in vv14-21 above? Is it the preacher Peter? Is it those prophesying? Is it those responding? No, it is God who is causing this to happen through the moving of His mighty hand. What will be the result as Peter summarizes in v21? Everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. Here is that verse from Greek, “και εσται πας ος εαν επικαλεσηται το ονομα κυριου σωθησεται.” The ESV’s rendering of “calls upon” translates επικαλεσηται the Aorist, Subjunctive, Middle form of ἐπικαλέομαι or epikaleomai, which, in this context, is making use of the name of the Lord in adoration as Lord and Saviour. This is a turning to Him for salvation from the hour of judgment and wrath to come. That is how Peter opens his sermon. Let us see the rest. Continue reading

The Fiction of Evolutionary Christianity

by Mike Ratliff

So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from his. Let us therefore strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience.  For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account. (Hebrews 4:9-13 ESV)

Continuing within the context of yesterday’s post, Dead to Sin Alive to God in Christ Jesus, in which Christians devote themselves entirely to their Lord in all parts of their lives rather than simply seeking to be religious, my intent was to use this post to elevate the role of God’s Word to its necessary role in the life of all true believers. However, today I read this post by my dear brother Ken Silva. I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised by what these men say, but as one who is totally devoted to our Lord Jesus Christ and His Word as the living active, sharp, two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart knowing full well that no one is hidden from God’s sight, but all are naked and exposed to His eyes and to Him all must give an account, well, I am just astounded when “professing Christian leaders” say and teach such σκύβαλον as if it is truth, which, of course, is of the world and of our enemy Satan, therefore, it is nothing but lies meant for those bound for destruction.  Continue reading