It happened one night!

Neither Clark Gable or Claudette Colbert were overly rapt in appearing in the film or pleased with the result.clark_gable_and_claudette_colbert_in_it_happened_one_night_film_trailer

Yet upon its release in the height of the Depression, it struck a chord with the film going public and was after an indifferent reception by critics and some upper class movie goers, upon wider release to hometown movie houses became a box office smash.

So low was her expectation for the films reception, Claudette Colbert decided not to attend the Academy awards but when it was announced that she was winning the award she was dragged to the ceremony.

Clark Gable, as I said before thought very little of the film yet as it turned out, was to be the only film for which he was to be awarded an Academy award.

While I have always enjoyed this film my only regret is that even as early as 1934, marriage was held, at least in Hollywood, in such low esteem,  and was something you could go into lightly and get out of or annul almost at whim.

For many leading the church today, it seems that they feel that the plain unadorned preaching of God’s Word is not capable of reaching the people of this modern world for Christ.

Like these two famous actors they are not impressed with the script God has given them to use to accomplish His will.

The simple story of Christ’s atoning death for the sins of mankind and the reconciliation of an alienated God is perceived as lacking in public appeal and “bankability” at the “box office”.

The proclaiming and teaching of the need for man to turn in repentance from sin and place their faith in Christ accompanied by renunciation of self seeking and self will, would in their view “close the house down”.

So we continue to see trimming down of the script to terms which appeal to popular perceptions and sensibilities.

We see it padded up with promises of earthly bliss and prosperity and all reference to the intrinsic cost of following Christ is pared away from the proclamation of the gospel.

images-bible-preachThe message of the Gospel is what it is. It can neither be taken away from or added to, it is God’s script for the preaching of the church in all ages and it alone will accomplish His saving purposes for mankind and the glorifying of His name through Jesus Christ.imagesold-gospel

Torn down

Take a good look!!

Sadly this little house after a long period of dereliction is no more.2017-02-21_084013

No doubt it took a lot of work and an outlay of time and money to build it in the first place.

For many years it was somebody’s home but it was finally left empty and fell into dilapidation.

A few days ago an excavator went in and laid this little house flat and loaded its materials on to the back of a truck and carted away.

It is now in American terms “A vacant lot”.

If someone had come along and thought this house was worth renovating maybe they would have purchased it, re-built it and one day a family or individual would live in it again.

This did not happen because no one saw any value in this old house.

Because of man’s choosing sin over obedience, he fell into dilapidation and came under God’s righteous judgment and the due punishment of rebellion against his creator.

Yet in his mercy and  free grace , God has in Christ paid the price for our sin and called all men to come to Him in repentance and be cleansed and renewed and live in relationship with Him.

Let us not reject this gracious gospel call and turn away from so great a salvation because otherwise there is a worse fate awaiting us than becoming a vacant Lot.

The Day of the Lord

“Remember the law of my servant Moses, the statutes and rules that I commanded him at Horeb for all Israel.

“Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes. And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with a decree of utter destruction.” Malachi 4:4-6

It has often been said that while the Old Testament ends with a curse, the New Testament ends with a blessing.

This is true but the curse in Malachi 4:6 is a provisional one.

This portion of scripture always reminds me of a person who is running out of paper and is trying to cram into a few words, vital last minute instructions. The importance of the instruction is such that every word is given weight and driven home.

This message from God was to be the last in the Old Testament dispensation and it would be several hundred years before the nation of Israel would receive an authoritative message from God. In other words this message had to stay with them for a very long time.

Typical of the prophets of the Old Testament Malachi stood four square on what God had revealed by His prophets in the past.

From Moses onwards, the people of Israel were provided with the laws and teaching from God which He gave them to live by and maintain their relationship with Him. They were also to faithfully pass these commandments on to the next generation.

The primary role of the prophets of God was to unceasingly remind the people of God’s revealed will and exhort them to reform their behavior by putting away sin and idolatry and return to obedience.

This ministry is of no less importance today when error, false teaching and overall laxness are rife.

Although the Old Testament prophets primary role was that of “forth – telling” the Word of God they also had a role of “fore-telling” what God had purposed to do in the future.

Speaking in language well known and understandable by people familiar with the Old Testament, God promises to send Elijah as the forerunner for His own coming in awe and power.Indeed Jesus in Matthew 11:14 refers to this prophecy when referring to John the Baptist.

While some commentators apply this solely to the ministry of John the Baptist and the first coming of Christ, others telescope it to an appearance of Elijah before the Second Coming.

However this may be, there is no doubt that John the Baptist, although denying being a re-incarnation of this great prophet, had a ministry filled with similar power and Spirit. John’s work among the people stirred a reformation among the people and caused them to look at themselves and to correct what was wrong and displeasing to God in their lives.

No doubt many fathers and children were reconciled and relationships renewed.

The gospel may cause division among many but among true believers its ultimate effect is to unite and reconcile

The Day of the Lord is a recurring theme in Scripture and refers to the appearance of God in judgment of sinners and deliverance of the Godly.

The people’s response to this message of impending judgment would dictate how God would deal with them when He appeared.

God’s holds open the door of repentance for all who will enter in.

This reminds us that judgment is “God’s strange work”.

Unbelief and impenitence invite God’s punishment and it will be all the greater because sinners reject the mercy He so freely offers and tread underfoot the means of salvation He has revealed.

The Day of the Lord is in always imminent and we should all look to ourselves and our readiness to appear before Him.

We must also give warning to others about the danger of being found without Christ on that awesome and terrible day.

malachi4-2

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It happened one night!

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