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Friday, February 27, 2015

A WORLD WITHOUT LINES DRAWN?

Drawing the Line - We Need Lines!



Have you ever noticed how many lines are in our worlds? There are lines on the road, lines in the parking lot, lines in fast food restaurants, lines on athletic fields, lines on an airport runway and in fact just about anywhere we go we see lines. Why are the lines there? They are legalistic ways of telling us that we are not free to choose to do things the way the Lord leads us. Now that is silly. 

Those lines are there as guides to keep us safe and to maintain order. We would be a bit unnerved if we entered a major highway and the lines were all gone. A parking lot with no lines would be a mess. A football game with no goal line would be pretty ridiculous. Lines are a necessary part of our lives.

Yet have you ever noticed how many Christians like to speak of a Christianity as a life without lines. If someone creates lines they risk being called a legalist. Why? Lines are necessary to protect us and to guide us. We all have them, but we just have them marked a bit differently. 

How dare someone draw a line and caution others about books that lead to heresy? After all, don’t we learn from everyone? They put “disclaimers” in the front of their books while banning books from men like J. Frank Norris, Jack Hyles, Tom Malone, Curtis Hutson, Shelton Smith, etc. They compare our drawn lines to Communism’s burning of books. I have yet to see a book burning of their authors in front of an Independent Baptist Church, yet they refuse to let their members or students see a copy of men’s writings who are on their enemies’ list.

A line is drawn with a ten yard chain in a football game and an inch can make the difference between a fourth down and a first down. A line is drawn in a baseball strike zone and an inch can make the difference between a strike and a ball. An inch can make a difference, but of course it all depends on which team you are on as to whether you complain or not.  

1. Lines usually have a reason, even if we do not understand it.
2. Lines do not make someone a legalist. That said...
3. Lines do not necessarily make someone a better Christian.
4. Lines help protect our testimony.
5. Lines give us a guide for protection.
6. Lines should be well marked. Unclear lines create confusion.
7. Lines make organizations operate more smoothly. That said...
8. We should honor the lines established in the places where God has put us.
9. Lines may vary slightly or even extensively. 
10. Lines should not be used to judge others. 
11. We should be thankful not resentful for lines.
12. Some lines are non negotiable. That said...
13. Some lines are more preference that conviction. That is not wrong either. 
14. Lines mark a distinction. Without lines we would have no inbounds or out of bounds.

So, you see, lines are a good thing and it is foolish to be critical for maintaining lines in our personal lives, our homes, and our ministries. 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

MRS. DONNA WINTERS GRADUATED TO HEAVEN!

DONNA WINTERS WENT TO HEAVEN ON TUESDAY FEBRUARY 24, 2015


Donna Winters
August 1944-February 2015


Mrs. G and I met Donna and her husband Gary Winters in the summer of 1975.  The Winters family had come to enroll at Hyles-Anderson College. He was from Arkansas and so was I, which gave us a common background. Our families quickly became friends. 

Music teacher Jim Salee was killed in an automobile accident in October, 1975, on his way to teach at Hyles-Anderson College. Gary was asked by Dr. Jack Hyles to assume the duties once held by Jim Salee as head of the Music Department.  

Upon graduation Gary, Donna, and family pastored our home church in Kalamazoo, MI, for little over two years.  

In August of 1980 we came together to Longview, TX,. He was the Associate Pastor of Longview Baptist Temple.  They served for 7 years faithfully and added much to the ministry.

Donna was a faithful Sunday school teacher, soul winner, children's worker, church member, mother, and wife. She was friendly to all and made time for everyone. She was a wonderful servant of the Lord. She will be sadly missed. God bless her memory.  It is Heaven's gain, but our loss! We love you Donna!


Thursday, February 19, 2015

WAITING ON FINAL PROOFS!

INDEPENDENTBAPTIST.COM PROOFS OF TWO NEW BOOKS BEING FINALIZED


240 Page book
$14.95
$10.00 pre-sale
$8/book for a case of 30


227 Page book
$14.95
$10.00 pre-sale
$8/book for a case of 30

These books will be going to press this next week. If you would like to order, soon you will be able to go to SOLVECHURCHPROBLEMS.COM and visit our STORE to order.  Keep checking until they are in the STORE.

The pre-sale price is $10 per book. This price will only be available through April. The retail price will be $14.95 per book after April.  If you would like to be put on a list for pre-sale just email bgraysr@me.com or dayres5@juno.com.  You may also call 903-237-9019.

A church or bookstore will be able to purchase a case of 30 for $8/book plus S/H. These cases will be drop shipped from our printers in MN to your door. They should arrive in 3 to 4 days after purchase. 

You will want to get these into the hands of your people. This is who Jack Hyles, Curtis Hutson, Lee Roberson, Tom Malone, etc. were.   The details in these books will provide a Biblical fabric for reaching and keeping people.

These books will help to push the reset button for the factors of the great outreach ministries of our mentors. They will certainly not only make you think, but provide the basics to successfully reach the unsaved and keep the saved.


IS THERE NOT A CAUSE?



IS IT PRIDE OR IS IT A CAUSE?





"And Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spake unto the men; and Eliab's anger was kindled against David, and he said, Why camest thou down hither? and with whom hast thou left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know thy pride, and the naughtiness of thine heart; for thou art come down that thou mightest see the battle.

And David said, What have I now done? Is there not a cause?"

Matthew 7:1-6 is a much misunderstood group of verses. Verses 1-5 expose the one who makes a mountain out of a mole hill. It is one who uses judgment to vilify and verify minuscule matters.  

Then, enter verse 6 where judgment has to be made about major Biblical matters. A judgment must be made as to “dogs” and “swine.” The difference between a “mote” and a “pearl” is significant and must be judged. It is of necessity that judgment be in play when it comes to the “mote” the “pearl” the “dogs" and the “swine.” 

The mocking and attacking of standards, holy living, naming sin, aggressive soul winning, pastor led churches, being independent Baptist, ecclesiastical separation, topical preaching, lack of verses used, King James Bible, our forefathers, etc., is not a trivial matter. These pearls of great price are to be protected.

Our heritage cannot be for sale or watered down by worldly compromisers like Rick Warren and his prodigies. They belittle our heroes and uplift a new way, which is nothing but church wrapped in worldly apparel. 

They are the "anon" tweeter crowd  who cowardly hide behind their anonymity in order to bravely tweet their critiques to push their hidden agendas. 

Thus, be careful when you use verses to silence the ones who refuse to give the precious pearls of truth to those who will not only devour, but “…turn again and rend you.”  

This homogenized fundamentalism which justifies opening the door for neo-fundamentalist authors from the camp of Rick Warren, who mock our fundamentalism, to be hailed as the ones with the truth is ridiculous. 

If we had felt this way about the Nazis of WWII, as our government does about ISIS, we would all be speaking German today. It is naive and naivety at its worst when good men who know better allow the infiltration of the Emerging church moment into independent Baptist churches. 

This spiritual unscriptural immigration brings with it colored lights for mood, worship teams, an invitation that ends up in room 120, Evangelical authors, Rick Warren authors, anti-Hyles, anti-Malone, anti-Roloff, anti-Hutson, etc., all from the Emerging church mode, model, and portfolio. 

The local church is not a Broadway Play or platform to display the local church's American Idol contestants. This house of God is for teaching, preaching, altar calls, baptizing converts, and fellowshipping around the Word of God.

These pseudos cry “grace” and yet give no grace to the fallen. Jesus was more upset with doctrinal failure than moral failure, but not so today. Their antiseptic white gloved fundamentalism is not the fundamentalism of your fathers. Your fathers fought for what God blessed. Those blessings did not come without losses.  

I fear that some of you who have been handed ministries purchased with the blood of your parents and are squandering it all for the cry of “unity.” I hurt when I think of my ten grandchildren and my three great grandsons as to what type of fundamentalism they will wake up to find in their adult life in America.

There is nothing personal at play here. This is pure principle! "Is there not a cause?" If there is, then someone must stick their neck out and say so! If Jack Hyles, John Rice, Lee Roberson, or Curtis Hutson had pushed the envelope with this mixed doctrinal multitude of today I would still pen this article.

Why is it when it is one of our own we are like the Antarctic - frozen at the mouth. Yet, if it is someone outside of our so-called camp we scream it from the house tops? Strange bedfellows we have today?

There are those who will use success as a defense. Let me break success down into two categories. First, there is success in getting people saved. Secondly, there is success in preserving the right positions and the orchard. Billy Graham was successful in the first, but not in the second. He destroyed the orchard.

I rejoice in every soul saved under the ministry of Billy Graham. I grieve over the damage done by his ecumenical position. You who read these promoted books, with a disclaimer on the inside, are only two steps away from the ecumenicalism of Billy Graham when you follow those who follow Rick Warren. 

Can we not decipher between the two and understand the importance of both collectively? I know men who hold to a great position, but who never see a soul saved. These are they who feel they are called to expose error more aggressively than to spread the Gospel. 

If there is one thing I admire most about John R Rice it is that he was relentless in exposing error and relentless about winning the lost. I thank God for the souls saved directly or indirectly due to the influence of Billy Graham, or the Billy Graham wannabes of our day, BUT I refuse to let the compromise go unchallenged.

Now let me make it clear. When an independent Baptist preacher begins to promote the books of those who are a part of Rick Warren's ministry, I, along with you, MUST sound the alarm. 

This is the Rick Warren who recently praised the Pope and defended the Catholic faith. This is the Rick Warren who has compromised Biblical truth for the acceptance of Oprah. This is a man who has continued his movement from fundamental truth to ecumenical compromise. This is the one who has begun to endorse Islamic teachings.

I have disdain for this heretical association? There ought to be an outcry from all over this nation about anyone who claims to be an independent fundamental Baptist who is promoting books by men who are not the right influences and leading young ones to the ecumenical altar for the sake of growth. 

Brethren, where are we headed? Just connect the dots and it will not take a spiritual giant to see the end of "their conversation." (Hebrews 13:7) If this is my swan song then so be it!

Saturday, February 14, 2015

IB.COM PUBLISHERS APPROVE BOOK COVER

NEW AND FINAL BOOK COVER


232 pages of Jack Hyles' love and investment in the Sunday school ministry

Yesterday we received the final and approved book cover for "JACK HYLES' PASSION FOR SUNDAY SCHOOL." This book will provide insightful and powerful Biblical thoughts on what Jack Hyles used throughout his 5 decades of ministry. He was successful as well as being in the forefront of the Sunday school movement.

The unique perspective of this book is its focus on the pre-era of Hyles-Anderson College's influence on the Sunday school of First Baptist Church of Hammond, IN.  The "World's Largest Sunday School" award was given before HAC.  The post HAC influence in some ways overshadowed the real Sunday school of FBC. 

Most local churches will never have a college base of workers. The search into the Sunday school of pre-HAC days is vital to understanding how this ministry can aid local churches in reaching their Jerusalem. This can be accomplished in our day for Christ without the  benefit of a Bible college. 

I remember Brother Hyles limiting the HAC workers for work in the "A" Sunday school by setting a limit of 10%college involvement. I am convinced this book will help the cause of Christ in your town.

Once the books come off of the presses in MN they can be drop shipped to you within 3 to 4 days once coming off of the presses.  Pricing will be finalized next week. Stay tuned!


Friday, February 13, 2015

FINALIZING NEW BOOKS!


BOOK COVERS





INDEPENDENTBAPTIST.COM publishers are finalizing and proofing the book covers today for "PASSION FOR SOULS" and "JACK HYLES' PASSION FOR SUNDAY SCHOOL." They will soon be able to start on the printing! I am excited about these two companion books. They will go hand in hand for pushing the reset button for local churches. 
As soon as the details are finalized I will let you know pricing and delivery. Our printers in MN will be able to drop ship them to you within 3 days after they are printed and boxed. "PASSION FOR SOULS" is a 270 page paperback while "JACK HYLES' PASSION FOR SUNDAY SCHOOL" is a 232 page paperback book. 
The manuscripts were given to several knowledgable people who said they believe these books will help rediscover the practical Biblical principles which gave us the explosive growth of the 60's,70's, and early 80's. That growth did not need worldly music or compromising doctrine to attract people for it was God who was attracted to the truth being spread by solid local churches. God was not made in our image for we were made in His image. Thus instead of bringing God down to man we ought to bring man up to God. No need for the Emerging church in God's economy.
You can email dayres5@juno.com or bgraysr@me.com. 


Thursday, February 12, 2015

BRIAN WILLIAM'S LESSONS FOR ALL OF US

Lessons Learned from Brian Williams



Most of us have been captivated by the story of the NBC news anchor Brian Williams in recent days. As you probably have heard by now Mr. Williams has been heavily criticized and placed on a six month unpaid leave of absence. He was placed on unpaid leave for telling a story that supposedly took place in Afghanistan, which placed himself in a situation that has been proven to be untrue. Most people know the story so I will not rehash it here, however there are some lessons that I feel are important for us to learn from this situation.




The first lesson is one every pastor needs to consider. Inherent to our preaching there is the danger of exaggeration or embellishment  There is probably not one of us who at sometime has not embellished a story, even if only slightly. However, when a man stands in the pulpit it is imperative that he tell the story accurately and truthfully. If every pastor in America had his stories scrutinized, I fear that many would be found guilty of doing exactly what Brian Williams did. 

Before a pastor preaches he should relive the stories he plans to tell to make certain that all of the facts are exactly as they took place. Sometimes we begin to tell a story and before we know it we have added something to it that wasn't true. It may not have necessarily changed the truth of the story, but it did change its accuracy. Even when sharing a answer to prayer, we can embellish the story to make it more dramatic, often bringing more attention to our prayer power than to the goodness of God. Preacher, tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth as you recount stories in your sermons.

One of the interesting things about this story is that it reveals the danger of our celebrity culture. Mr. Williams, though a liberal, is a heralded news reporter who, through many years of hard work rose to the ranks of a network anchorman. Somewhere along the way Mr. Williams went from being a reporter to a celebrity. In our society we love to turn those who we admire into something of a celebrity which often creates two dangers. 

First, we celebrate their acheivement to a status of hero and then celebrate their fall when they let us down. We expect them to live up to a standard we do not expect of ourselves, and criticize them for the very same sins we are guilty of ourselves. In a world where people lie, it seems ironic that Mr. Williams is being castigated for being a liar by those who turned him into a celebrity. 

I am not justifying his wrongdoing, but I am amazed at how easily we go from lifting a man up to tearing him down. We should celebrate the achievements of man without "celebritizing" the man. We can admire them without putting them on a pedestal from which they are more likely to fall. It concerns me how we criticize celebrities for being worshipped when we were the ones who put them on the pedestal in the first place. Stop being so star struck Christian. As Dr. Hyles used to quote, "I put my pants on one leg at a time just like every other man."

The second danger to this celebrity mindset is that it can easily cause the person being celebrated to become more of a celebrity than a servant. Mr. Williams became enamored by his celebrity status, even canceling a commitment to host an event honoring veterans to appear on the David Letterman Show. 

There was a day when such Late Night Shows were reserved mostly for those in the entertainment industry. Now even presidential candidates find it necessary to appear on these shows and be applauded by a secular audience. Lets face it, we have gone from a nation of servants to a nation of celebrities. Preachers are not immune to this danger. I preached with Dr. Hyles many times and I watched him as people celebrated him for the way God blessed his ministry, but I also saw him fight to stay humble and remain the servant he had always been. He worked hard not to allow the affection of people to change who he was in his own mind and before God.

There is a part of me that sympathizes with Brian Williams. Even though he is a liberal, the vicious attacks on him are not just. He has made mistakes, for which there are consequences, but he is also a man with a family who are having to watch him being laughed at, ridiculed and condemned. There is certainly a price Mr. Williams must pay for his mistakes, but he still should be treated with decency, not ridicule. May God give us wisdom in this age in which we live to "walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise."

ELECTED TO GO TO HELL? REALLY?


THE BIBLE TRUTH ABOUT ELECTION



CALVINISM IS FUNDAMENTALLY FLAWED
Scriptures the Calvinist will never teach!

II Peter 1:10, “Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fail.”

 All of mankind was in a predicament because all of mankind had sinned, those sins were recorded in Heaven, and God placed a price of death in Hell on those sins. As a result three things had to happen in order for man to go to Heaven at death. One, his sins had to be removed from those records in Heaven. Two, no future sins could be recorded on those records. Three, Jesus’ righteousness had to be placed on those records in Heaven.


 ELECTION is the doctrine that means something that God Himself chooses by His Sovereignty! There are some who teach that salvation has to do with ELECTION. They say that God by His Sovereignty chooses who will be saved. That is simply not true! Man chooses whether he is saved or not. He either accepts or rejects God’s payment of His only begotten Son for sin.

 Some teach God knew who would be saved and so He then elected them to be saved. That is not the doctrine of ELECTION. The doctrine of ELECTION has nothing to do with salvation, but it has to do strictly with our working for God.

 A man is saved by trusting Jesus Christ as payment for his sins, God wipes away all of his sins, refuses to record future sins, and places Jesus’ righteousness on the saved person’s record in Heaven. He is declared innocent, as if he had never sinned at all. God appeases Himself! God sets the saved person apart for a future life in Heaven. God gives him a new birth and a new creature to escort him to Heaven.

God gives the saved person the person of the Holy Spirit to convert him to usefulness for God. God prepares a glorified body for the saved person to give him when he arrives in Heaven. God made RECONCILIATION possible so that man could fellowship with God Himself. God preserves the saved person for Heaven. This is amazing because all of that took place the moment the saved person placed his or her faith in Jesus Christ for salvation!

 Now comes the doctrine of ELECTION! God elected me to be in the ministry! God elected my son to be my pastor! ELECTION is when you were saved first God commanded you to be baptized, join a local church, tithe and give offerings, and go soul winning, second His ELECTION is to put you into and area of ministry to others. In essence ELECTION has to do with you working for God. No one is elected for Heaven or elected for Hell. That is as much heresy as a bloodless religion is or a non-inspired Bible is!

 When God saved me at age eleven at 132 E. Michigan Ave., Galesburg, Michigan in February of 1957 He cleared my record in Heaven, declared me justified or innocent, appeased Himself, court adjourned, He gave me a new creature, He gave me the Holy Spirit, He prepared a glorified body for me in Heaven, gave me an opportunity to fellowship with Him, preserved me for Heaven, and elected me to be in the ministry.


ISRAEL WAS CALLED AN ELECT NATION


 Romans chapters 9, 10, and 11 you find that Israel was not chosen for salvation but was chosen by God to do a unique work in the world. She was chosen by God to give us the Scriptures, give us the Messiah, and give us the local New Testament church. In Matthew chapter 10 all of the members of the first Baptist church of Jerusalem were all Jews. Israel was chosen by God to present the Gospel to the world.

 When God elected Israel to do all of that He was saying I need a nation to give the Scriptures too, the Messiah too, the local New Testament church too, and the Gospel too! God is not saying I have chosen Israel to go to Heaven and all the other nations to go to Hell. No, God elected Israel to do a particular work for Him on earth.


A LOCAL NEW TESTAMENT CHURCH IS CALLED “THE ELECT LADY”


 II John 1:1, “The elder unto the elect lady…” The local New Testament church is called “…the elect lady…” Does that mean that everybody who’s a member of Longview Baptist Temple of Longview, Texas, is elected to go to Heaven? Oh, no! ELECTION is not about going to Heaven or Hell in the Scriptures! The local church has been elected to be the instrument of the propagation of the Gospel in the Ark-La-Tex area.

 Israel was elected for a particular work for God on earth. Longview Baptist Temple and every other local New Testament church is elected to spread the Gospel on earth. ELECTION is when Bob Gray II was saved God said, “I’m going to elect Bob Gray II to be the pastor of the Longview Baptist Temple of Longview, Texas.” At salvation God elected you to do what you are doing for God.

 Here is the question! Your calling is to be a soul winner! Are you doing it? Your election is to do a specific work for God on earth at this very moment! Are you doing it?

 Israel was an ELECT nation. Elected to Heaven or Hell? No! Elected to give the world the Saviour, Scriptures, Gospel, and New Testament. The local New Testament church is the “elect lady.” Elected to Heaven or Hell? No! Elected to give the Gospel to every human being on earth for God! This was not given to “Youth For Christ,” “Child Evangelism,” “Gideons,” “Campus Crusade,” “Bill Bright Ministries,” “The 700 Club,” or any Para-church organization. God has elected the local New Testament church not to Heaven or Hell, but to spread the Gospel to “every creature.”


THE APOSTLES ARE CALLED HIS ELECT


 Does this mean that the Apostles are the only ones going to Heaven? No, thousands were saved and baptized during their day! ELECTION cannot be referring to going to Heaven or Hell. The Apostles were the first ones chosen for a specific job on earth for God. They were chosen in a unique way to lead in spreading the Gospel to the world. ELECTION is being chosen for leadership to spread the Gospel around the globe to every nation.


PAUL THE APOSTLE


Titus 1:1, “Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness;” Paul calls himself a servant and an apostle with both being according to the faith of God’s elect.” He is saying God has elected him or chosen him to be a servant and an apostle. Paul was elected for Heaven? No! Paul elected to get saved and then God elected Paul to be a servant and an apostle.

 II Peter 3:9, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” Our God does not want any one to go to Hell! Our God does not elect people to Heaven or Hell. He elects people to do a work on earth for God


ELECT ANGELS


 I Timothy 5:21, “I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels…” Are angels born again? No! Thus, this cannot be dealing with Heaven or Hell. Angels cannot be saved! What are angels? Messengers! What are they elected too? To be messengers!

 Paul was elected to be an apostle to the Gentiles. He took the Gospel to the Western World. The Jewish nation was an elect nation to give us the Messiah, the Scriptures, the Gospel, and the local New Testament church. The local New Testament church is the elect body to spread the Gospel to the world. The angels have been elected as special messengers to help us spread the Gospel for God.

 ELECTION is a Sovereign act of God to do a specific work to spread the Gospel to the world for God. If God makes an act based based on what you do then that is not a Sovereign decision by God. God cannot elect you to do something or be something you have already chosen. I did not choose to be a preacher and neither did any one else who is in the ministry.

 All are commanded and called to be soul winners, but only a few are chosen to be the pastor, youth pastor, or bus director, etc. Just before Matthew 20:16 is the parable of Jesus sending forth labourers in to the vineyard. In dealing with those labourers He said, “few are chosen.” Thus, this doctrine of has nothing to do with who goes to Heaven and who goes to Hell but who works or who labors in a particular field.

 John 15:16, “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.” God does not want you to be barren spiritually but fruitful spiritually. Jesus is saying the being “chosen” relates to the work in the vineyard.

Every context of the word “elect” in the Scriptures has to do with work! God has elected you not to be a lazy hound dog! All of us are called to be a soul winner, but some are elected to be the principal, youth pastor, mission’s director, college president, or pastor, etc.


 At salvation God took away our sins, decided not to record any future sins, put Jesus’ righteousness on our record, declared us justified, appeased Himself by Himself, declared the case closed with the court adjourned, set me aside for Heaven in the future, regenerated us, gave us a new creature, sent the Holy Spirit into us to convert us, reserved a new body in Heaven for him, made it possible for us to fellowship with God, preserved us by sealing us with the Holy Spirit, and then ELECTION is God giving us a specific work to do for Him!







Wednesday, February 11, 2015

HAPPY 70th BIRTHDAY TO MY WIFE OF 50 YEARS!

HAPPY 70th BIRTHDAY TO MY BRIDE OF 50 YEARS THIS JUNE 25th


LEE ANN GRAY

Thursday, February 5, 2015

TWO NEW BOOKS COMING SOON!


TWO NEW BOOKS SOON TO BE RELEASED FROM INDEPENDENTBAPTIST.COM PUBLISHERS

Brother Hyles often said, “I don’t pastor the members of First Baptist Church. I pastor the Sunday school teachers of First Baptist Church. The Sunday school teachers pastor the people of First Baptist Church.” That is why he built and maintained such a healthy church. He knew that people need to be pastored.

Unfortunately, many men copied the ministries of First Baptist Church, but did not copy the Sunday school. They started the Spanish ministry, but did not organize a Spanish Sunday school. They started a bus ministry in ghetto areas, but they did not organize a Sunday school program for those riding those buses. They put the cart before the horse.

Dr. Bruce Goddard

"I remember my first weekend in Hyles Anderson college.  Sunday morning I was put into the Junior 3B department and the giant opening assembly.  After the opening was concluded we divided up into dozens of smaller classrooms.  The Seifer furniture building  was old, the classroom dividers were hardly more than curtains, but dozens of teachers had their own small group of children to teach.  Hyles Anderson was only a few years old at the time, it was January of 1979.  I spent the next 3 1/2 years learning about Sunday school.  I sat in teachers meetings and heard Bro Hyles himself teach through the lesson for the next week, giving us little thoughts, tidbits, illustrations and truth for our class the next week.  Sunday school was big to Brother Hyles. 

In a Christian culture that is fast exalting  the mega church and quickly eroding the Sundayschool ministry, these pages outline the philosophies and the principles upon which America's Sunday schools were once built.  Dr. Jack Hyles knew church work.  He knew the fulfillment of the great commission could not happen with just one giant service a week.  Although he believed in big everything else, Sunday schools  were small, personal, and a tool to train both the teacher and the student.  

In these pages you will see principles  articulated, ideas crystalized, and discover the simplicity and profundity of Dr. Hyles amazing Sunday school. Perhaps the greatest truth in these pages is the "WHY."  Why do we do what we do.  This is a marvelous  "what, why and how" of Sunday School. 

This is a must read!  A wonderful treatise! You will stop constantly to write notes to yourself and others,  you will see your own questions mentioned with answers supplied.   What a tool to bring us back to a place of influence our community!"

Dr. Bruce Goddard



Table Of Contents

Acknowledgements 4 
Preface 5 
Introduction By Russell Anderson 8
A Soul Winner’s Spirit 11 
Jesus, The Personal Soul Winner 17 
Let’s Go Soul Warning 22 
Personal Soul Winning; It’s Personal 26 
The Stars Of Soul Winning 33 
How To Be A Fruitful Soul Winner 38 
How To Stay Soul Conscious 45 
12 Steps To Soul Winning 49 
Keys To A Winning Presentation 54 
The Compliment And The Conversation 63 
How To Get Lost People To Trust You 69 
How To Get A Person Lost 73 
Charting The Romans Road 78 
Getting Converts To Walk The Aisle 80 
Drawing The Net 86 
Leading A Sinner T o Repent 89 
Leading Converts T o Baptism 95 
Your New Life In Christ 100 
Soul Winning Boldness 110 
The Pastor’s Soul Winning 116 
Soul Winning Confidence 122
Various Tips For Soul Winners 129 
Training A Soul Winner 135 
Soul Winning Tools 139 
Characteristics of Great Soul Winners I Have Known 144
Becoming A Soul “WINNER” 150 
How To Be A Soul “LOSER” 161 
Obeying All Of The Great 166 Commission
Overcoming Objections in Soul Winning 174 
Leading A Natural Man To Make A Spiritual Decision 179 
Addendum 183 
Soul Winning Quotes 184

PASSION FOR SOULS SUNDAY SCHOOL SERIES

Bloody Hands 196 
Having Compassion 201 
There IS A Hell 206 
The Call To Soul Winning 210 
The Benefits Of Being A Soul Winner 215

PERSONAL SOUL WINNING SUNDAY SCHOOL SERIES

The Wisdom Of Soul Winning 220 
The Image Of Soul Winning 223 
The Technique Of Soul Winning 227 
The Sin Problem Of Soul Winning 234 
The Solution Of Soul Winning 238 

Dr. John Hamblin

"I'm thrilled that you are holding in your hands right now, this tremendous bound volume, "Passion For Souls" by my dear friend, Dr. Bob Gray, Sr.

I've said, as Andrew was the Apostle of Personal Workers in the days of the early church, Dr. Bob Gray, Sr. is the "Apostle of Personal Workers" in the present church"

Here is a principled fundamentalist, powerful preacher, published author and proficient soul winner, who has not only lead tens of thousands to Christ but also has trained and tutored tens of thousands of personal soul winners.

In this bound volume you will find the drive, desire, duty, determination and demeanor, of one, without question, of the most successful personal soul winners of our day.

Study, soak up and be ready to be stirred up, by these next chapters and pages from one who's soul truly carries with it 24/7....”A SOUL WINNERS' PASSION"!"


Dr John N. Hamblin, evangelist



INDEPENDENTBAPTIST.COM will soon release two new books - "JACK HYLES' PASSION FOR SUNDAY SCHOOL" and "PASSION FOR SOULS." If I could recommend just two books to pastors to give to their lay leaders and members it would be these two books. I believe one of the great secrets to the success of the Jack Hyles' ministries were these two elements. You will find within the 240 pages of each book very practical and poignant thoughts to bring us back to the foundation of fundamentalism. There is no reason to fail in the reaching of souls for Christ. Please keep an eye out for the pre-sale of these books. I promise you they will help push the re-set button.

Monday, February 2, 2015

THE DANGER OF FAMILIARITY!

FAMILIARITY CAN BREED CONTEMPT




Leviticus 10:1-3, “And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took either of them his censer, and put fire therein, and put incense thereon, and offered strange fire before the LORD, which he commanded them not.”

“And there went out fire from the LORD, and devoured them, and they died before the LORD.”

“Then Moses said unto Aaron, This is it that the LORD spake, saying, I will be sanctified in them that come night me, and before all the people I will be glorified. And Aaron held his peace.”


Nadab was the oldest of Aaron’s four sons. Aaron was the first High Priest of Israel and Moses was the leader of God’s people. Abihu was the second oldest of Aaron’s sons. Nadab the oldest and Abihu the second oldest did something that was very unusual for they offered strange fire on the altar.

The Brazen Altar was in the Courtyard of the Tabernacle and that is where the lamb was slain. The fire on the Brazen Altar was supposed to be burning all of the time. It was never supposed to go out. Then from the Brazen Altar one would find the Laver inside the Tabernacle, then on the left side as one entered in the Holy Place itself was the Golden Candlestick while on the right side was the Table of Shewbread. As one got closer to the Holy of Holies, where the Ark of the Covenant was, there was a veil that separated the Holy of Holies from where the Mercy Seat was placed.

Just outside of the veil was a little piece of furniture called the Altar of Incense. On that Altar was burnt sweet smelly savor, incense, or a perfume kind of savor. The fire on that Altar had to come from the Brazen Altar out in the Courtyard.

The Brazen Altar was the place where the fire never went out but the fire at the Altar of Incense, God said, had to come from the fire of the Brazen Altar. There was a reason for that because the lambs had been slain and the coals were bloody coals on the Brazen Altar and God said only the blood on the coals will work! Thus, the bloody coals were on the Altar of Incense had to come from the Brazen Altar.

Nadab and Abihu were the two oldest sons of Aaron the High Priest and they decided to take a censor and put in the censer their own fire. They did not take the fire from the Brazen Altar. They put their own fire in that censer. They went to the Altar of Incense and burned the incense with their own fire.

“Preacher what in the world is the big deal?” I’ll tell you why it was such a big deal because God said He wanted the fire on the Altar of Incense to come from the fire of the Brazen Altar. There is a lot of religious fire today but it doesn’t originate at Calvary. It is not blood fire!

A lot of religious people today have much zeal but the zeal is no good unless it originates at the Brazen Altar, which is the cross of Calvary. The main reason to do it this way is because God said so!

What was the problem? Nadab and Abihu, the sons of the High Priest, had become so accustomed to all of this and this became old hat to them. The church house was their second home. So, one day they just casually used their own fire. Others would have never dared to do what these sons did. Those outside would have realized how sacred this whole process was but to Nadab and Abihu, being the sons of the High Priest, it was old stuff for them to see the Tabernacle. It was an old thing for them to see the animal sacrifice. It was old stuff for them to see the fire being taken from the bloody Brazen Altar to the Altar of Incense.

Maybe, much like the altar in the average Baptist church is old hat now to their members or maybe like soul winning is now old stuff to the average member. Maybe much like Sunday school, Sunday morning preaching, Sunday night preaching, Wednesday night Bible study, baptisms, standards, or the Christian school has become so routine that it is taken for granted. Maybe much like the King James Bible has become old hat to the average Christian. Instead of being the Holy Words of an almighty God given to us it has now become a textbook.

Thus, these sons took their censors and took their own fire to light the fire on the Altar of Incense but as soon as they did fire came down out of Heaven and destroyed them and killed them on the spot.

Why, because they thought nothing about it. They never gave it another thought that it made any difference because it had become old and trite. They had become accustomed to the house of God and their activity. They had become so familiar with the house of God. They had mentally brought the Brazen Altar, Laver, Golden Candlestick, Table of Shewbread, Veil, and the Altar of Incense down to their level of thought. They just casually took it for granted and probably said to someone who questioned them, “Oh, this is no big deal. Our dad is the High Priest and we have been here longer than you” and the result was that God killed them.

You who take lightly the preserved inspiration of the King James Bible for the English speaking peoples have become so accustomed to it that you now take steps to intellectually critique the Holy Words of an almighty God are walking in dangerous territory. Those who support such heresy will also suffer like Uzzah who innocently touched the Ark thinking he was doing the right thing but he died too. That is why those who are not sons of the High Priest look at these so-called men of God and shake their heads in unbelief that such things would occur especially in fundamental Baptist circles.

I was thinking this morning that such statements that put a question mark on the King James Bible could only occur in a college atmosphere where a large college dominates the local church. If I were to say something like that when I pastored the Longview Baptist Temple of Longview, Texas, I would have had 33 deacons knocking on my door. My board was not made up of TEXAS BAPTIST COLLEGE grads. These were really laymen who would not put up with such nonsensical statements.


CONSIDER UZZAH

There is another story in the Bible to be considered and that is about Uzzah. He was the son of a man named Abinadab. His dad was known for one thing in the Bible. The Ark of the Covenant after being captured by the Philistines was brought back to the city of David. On the was to the city of David the Ark of the Covenant had to be kept somewhere when they would stop to rest. Abinadab allowed the Ark of the Covenant to stay in his house.

This man, Abinadab, had a son whose name was Uzzah. This boy lived in the same house with the Ark. No doubt he became use to its presence. He couldn’t touch it but he knew it was there. No one else had this privilege until then. The actual Ark of the Covenant that holy powerful little piece of furniture, over which rested the Shekinah glory of God, rested in Uzzah’s house.

When it came time to take the Ark of the Covenant out of the house of Abinadab to be taken to the City of David Uzzah followed along as they transported the Ark of the Covenant to the city of David.

However, they did something they should not have done. God had said they should have the Ark of the Covenant transported by the hands of men known as Kohathites. These folks were one of the families of Levi. It was their job to transport the Ark of the Covenant and the other furniture of the Tabernacle.

God said He wanted it carried by the hands of men. However, they decided to put it on a cart. So, they placed the Ark of the Covenant on a new cart and they put some oxen out in front of it. The oxen pulled the Ark of the Covenant on this new cart. “Preacher that sounds much better to me to place it on a cart.” However, it doesn’t matter how it sounds to you. God said He wanted men to carry it by their hands.

This inspired King James Bible not only tells us of a divine message but it also tells us of a divine method of doing things. This Bible not only tells us the message but it also tells how to spread the message. This Bible not only tells us what to preach but how to preach. “But preacher soul winning doesn’t build a church.” Ok, and then don’t build a church but go soul winning! I’d rather do it God’s way and not build a church than not do it God’s way and build a church! God said by the “foolishness of preaching” not by the foolishness of “dramas.” America needs old-fashioned preaching, soul winning, and standards of holiness again!

God doesn’t need a new cart! Throw away your new cart! We find this Ark of the Covenant on this new cart being pulled by some oxen. “But preacher is looks so much better on the cart! The cart has wheels on it! After all this is a new day and we must keep up with the latest methods. It seems to me like this is much more efficient and the best way to do it.” The trouble is it doesn’t matter what you and I think, or like. It only matters what God likes and God thinks!

Observe what happens! As these oxen pulled the cart they stumbled and the cart began to shake.  Uzzah instinctively reached out his hand and touched the Ark. No man was supposed to do that! Nobody was to touch the Ark and as soon as Uzzah touched it he was stricken by death. His life was snuffed out immediately.

Wait a minute! Why did God give us the story of Nadab and Abihu? Why did God give us the story of Uzzah?  Why the story of Nadab and Abihu offering strange fire? It is simple because they were so familiar. Remember their dad was the boss man! They drew strength from that authority to challenge God’s Word!

What is the deal with Uzzah reaching and touching the Ark because he had become too familiar? It is so easy for those of us who are redeemed by the blood of Jesus Christ and do God’s work to become too familiar with that which is sanctified.

I believe that the lives of God’s people ought to be centered on their local church. I believe it is God’s will that the young people and children build their lives around their local church. No child of God has to prostitute to the devil’s crowd to have fun. You can have fun with God’s people.

Church is not something that takes place an hour on Sunday morning and then you go out and live like the devil all week long until you come back to church. Church is a place to come for 2 hours on Sunday morning, 2 hours on Sunday night, 2 hours on Wednesday night, 2 hours for soul winning night, 2 hours for sports, time for fellowship, time for your education, and for your fun. However, when that is true it can become very easy for God’s children to become too familiar with that which is sanctified.

Familiarity can breed contempt! Just like what happened to Uzzah. He happened to possess a privilege others did not have and because he had a privilege he thought it gave him privileges! He happened to have the Ark of the Covenant in his house. Give thought to this for in that the Ark dwelt the actual Ten Commandments on the Tablets with God’s own handwriting on those Tablets. In that Ark dwelt the Golden Pot of manna that fell every morning from Heaven in the wilderness. In that Ark dwelt Aaron’s rod that budded! All that was in Uzzah’s house. He became too familiar with it and when the Ark on the cart shifted a little he reached out to steady the Ark but God had said, “Don’t touch it!”

Likewise, Nadab and Abihu said, “We’ll just take some of our own fire and put it into our own censers and stick it into the Altar of Incense because this is so much easier! However, they had become too familiar with the work of God.

The church building is not a sanctuary and it is not the place where God lives but on the other hand it is a place sanctified for the service of God almighty. That’s one reason we built at Longview Baptist Temple the beautiful school building for Longview Christian Academy. Why, because it is easy for the LBT Auditorium and building to become a little too familiar for our children. I believe if that which is not sacred but is sanctified can lose its sanctification if God’s people are too familiar. That is why, in my opinion, gym-auditoriums are dangerous.

The church auditorium is sanctified not sacred but it is set aside for the preaching, teaching, singing, and praising God. That is why Texas Baptist College has it’s own buildings. There ought to be something about the church building that is not too familiar to God’s people. When I pastored LBT I did not come into the auditorium one or two times more than our church services. Why, because I wanted it to be a special place or a sanctified place if you please. The children should not be allowed to run around in the church auditorium. The truth is your children should be with you are some other responsible adult when on church property. The church auditorium is not sacred but it is sanctified1

God’s house is not in the sense that He lives there but it is God’s house because He owns it and it is set apart for His service. There is nothing wrong with the laughter or fellowshipping that occurs but there is something wrong with having a Ben Hur chariot race in there. This is not the place to eat or to drink. God’s house is a sanctified place!
I do not believe in formal church services, liturgy, or high church worship services but I do believe in dignity and propriety for God’s house. Too many parents bring their children to the house of God and turn them loose not knowing where they are and what they are doing. Although we should not revere the house of God we should respect the house of God. It is sanctified!

I Timothy 3:15, “But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.”

The chairs, pews, songbooks, piano, organ, pulpit, microphones, etc., were paid for with God’s money thus they belong to God are sanctified for His service. The house of God ought to be respected.

Uzza became too familiar with the Ark of the Covenant and he felt he had liberty because of familiarity to disobey God. Be careful familiarity gives no one the right to disobey God!

Nadab an Abihu were familiar with the Altar of Incense, the Brazen Altar, the Temple, the Tabernacle, and they felt liberty because of familiarity. After all their daddy was the High Priest. So, they offered the fire they wanted to offer and in so doing all three of them were killed. 


THE BODY OF THE BELIEVER IS THE TEMPLE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT AND IS SANCTIFIED

May we look at today’s Temple? It is not a building made with hands.

I Corinthians 6:18-20, “What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.”

“But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.”

“Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.”

“What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?”

“For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

God dwells in my body just like He dwelt in the Holy of Holies over the Ark of the Covenant in the early days. My body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit! It is not sacred but it is sanctified!

When I trusted Christ at age 11 God sanctified my spirit and set aside my spirit for Heaven. My salvation was settled and I’m set aside for a home in Heaven! When Jesus comes again this body of flesh I possess will be changed and then I will be totally set aside. I will have a body like Jesus and I will be totally sanctified. In the interval I’m being sanctified as I grow in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Every redeemed person’s body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit just as much as Solomon’s Temple. Thus, the body should be treated with the same care that the Temple of the Old Testament was treated.

Supposed someone brought some tobacco into the Old Testament Temple and poured it all over the altar. Suppose the High Priest had come in puffing on a cigar or suppose he is sipping on a cocktail, or has acid rock blasting over a boom box what would have happened?

If Nadab and Abihu were stricken dead because of strange fire and Uzzah was stricken dead because he attempted to steady the Ark of the Covenant can you imagine what would have happened to someone entering smoking a cigarette or come in there drinking liquor?

Go to the airport and see how much little respect people have for themselves by the way they wear their clothes or don’t’ wear clothes? Look at some of the old news clips of the ballparks in Babe Ruth’s day? You will see men dressed up and the ladies dressed up too! You will see the men in suits, white shirts, ties, and they look like businessmen! Boy have things changed in America!

·      The house of God is sanctified
·      The body of the believer is sanctified
·      The leader is sanctified

It is important to understand that no follower should become too close to his or her leader. God has given to all of us what Dr. John Rice used to call “God’s Deputies” for leadership in every area of life. I am not Father Gray but I am sanctified Gray!

No church member ought to call his or her pastor by their first name. Whatever role of leadership God has given you make sure that there is a respect for the position.

It is a shame when children call their dad “the old man” or call their mother “the old lady.” God is not pleased with that and when parents allow it to be said they are hurting their children more than they are themselves.

·      The house of God is sanctified
·      The body of the believer is sanctified
·      The leader is sanctified
·      The Scriptures are sanctified
·      The Gospel is sanctified
·      The nation Israel is sanctified

It is imperative that God’s people do not become too familiar with that which is sanctified or it could be a deadly thing. There should and must be a respect for the house of God, the body of the believer, the leader, the Scriptures, the Gospel, and the nation Israel.