June 2019

          

   VIEW FROM THE PULPIT               June 2019

Monthly topical artices kindly supplied by a regular visiting               

speaker from Northampton: Stan Burditt.

REMEMBER June 6th was a very special day for the veterans of the D Day landing in Normandy that happened 75 years ago.  The veterans were there to commemorate the invasion of France to defeat the Nazi enemy and to liberate the people of France.  75 years ago thousands of young men died on the five beaches where the allied forces landed and todays veterans went back to Sword Beach, Normandy to remember the sacrifice of their comrades on that day.  Two of those veterans, one aged 95 years old, the other 94 years old, who had parachuted into Normandy on D Day jumped again this year (in tandem with an instructor) from the Dakota aircraft to the same area.  What memories that would bring back!  After visiting the war grave cemetery where 4,500 soldiers were buried Prime Minister Theresa May attended a memorial service in Bayeux where she read from Micah chapter 4:

 But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it.

 And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

 And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.

 But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the Lord of hosts hath spoken it. 

This scripture reminds us that a time is coming when another deliverer will descend from heaven and will bring about peace upon the earth.

On June 8th my wife and I attended a gospel meeting in the small town of Towcester, 8 miles from Northampton.  We had not visited the town since 1960 when we attended some gospel meetings in a tent.  While the gospel was being preached that night a juke box was playing loud music in a nearby public house.  After the meeting the two evangelists and three young men from Northampton went to invite the people in the pub to the tent meetings.  The saloon bar was packed, shoulder to shoulder, with people.  A group of 4 or 5 truckers stood near me and one asked the question “What is Hell like?” I replied “you men are older than I am but I remember as a boy of 10 seeing Pathe-pictorial news pictures of the liberation of Belsen Concentration Camp, horrific scenes of open communal graves where hundreds of bodies had been thrown in”.  I said “if there had been anyone in Belsen who had any love or care for you, it would be the last place they would want to see you and that is a poor picture of what Hell will be like”.  The man who asked the question edged back and put his hand into his inside jacket pocket and pulled out 8 photographs of Belsen.  One of these photographs was of a monument with the inscription saying it marked the place where thousands of people perished.  Belsen = thousands, Hell = millions.  For that man and myself it was a memorable occasion.

Solomon says in Ecclesiastes 12 Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them;

He was exhorting young people to acknowledge God as Creator and not be fooled by theories such as evolution. 

We are living in days of extreme lawlessness.  Jesus said in Luke 17 Remember Lot’s wife the context being the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah because of their unnatural sexual activities.  God had sent angels (messengers) from Heaven to deliver Lot and his family from the imminent destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.  Lot’s daughters and sons in law mocked him when he warned them that judgement was about to fall, only Lot and his wife and two daughters escaped that night.  Lot’s wife having been taken by the hand and led out by an angel to safety, looked back, disobeying the command not to do so, and was turned into a pillar of salt. Trusting God for deliverance from Hell means no turning back to the old life.

In Luke 16 we read of a rich man who died and went to Hell.  Abraham said to him “Son remember thou in thy lifetime”.  This teaches us that although we take nothing material with us when we die, we do take our memory and the rich man realised that his faithless existence in life had brought him to that dreaded place.

In Luke 23 we read of a thief that died alongside the Lord Jesus Christ.  As the thief hung upon that cross he thought of the evil of his life and realised that he would imminently go to Hell.  Turning to the Saviour he said “Lord remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom” this act of repentance and faith secured the promise from the Lord Jesus “today thou shalt be with me in paradise”.  There is only one “11th hour” conversion recorded in the Bible.   Only one recorded that none should presume, but there is one that none need despair.

How blessed it is for the person who has believed and received Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour to know his word in Hebrews 8 v 12 “For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more”.

 

God bless,     

 

Stan Burditt