Come and Hear!

Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare what he hath done for my soul.

 I cried unto him with my mouth, and he was extolled with my tongue.

 If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:

But verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer.

 Blessed be God, which hath not turned away my prayer, nor his mercy from me.  Psalm 66:16-20

Behold the Lamb of God Which Taketh Away the Sin of the World


Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?

For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.

He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.

He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.

And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.

Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.

He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.

Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

Speaking in Tongues – Part II

The Baptism of the Holy Spirit

Up to the birth of Christ there had been 400 silent years in Israel since the glory (the manifestation of His presence) of God left the temple.  The Messiah had come preaching, teaching and healing to authenticate His message to the unbelieving Jews that He was indeed the Messiah.  They rejected Him and slew Him on a cross and He rose again from the dead.  Here speaking in tongues (other languages) was a sign to the unbelieving Jew.  A sign which authenticated the Messiah’s message and warned of impending judgment.

And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues (languages), as the Spirit gave them utterance (Acts 2:4).  

The context here is the coming of the Comforter (the Holy Spirit) whom the Lord promised to the church (the body of believers).  Keep in mind that the Holy Spirit’s ministry to the OT believer would change in His relationship to NT believers.  In the OT He came upon believers to enable them for a specific task.  In the NT He would indwell believers and seal them until the Day of Redemption.  The change in the Holy Spirit’s ministry was a special event (Pentecost), accompanied by a sign to unbelieving Jews.

Initially the coming of the Comforter was manifested by sound (of a mighty rushing wind), sight (cloven tongues like as of fire), and sign (speaking in tongues).  Remember that the definition of tongues is defined in this same passage (Acts 2) as the ability to speak another language without ever having learned it.

Later in Acts, when the first Gentiles were converted to Christ, their receiving of the Holy Spirit was manifested by speaking in tongues as well.  This again, was a sign to unbelieving Jews in fulfillment of OT prophecy (Isaiah 11:10).  After the initial conversion of Gentiles (Acts 10) and Paul’s instruction to disciples at Ephesus on the Holy Spirit (Acts 19:6), one will be hard pressed to find speaking in tongues in any NT book other than the first letter to the Corinthians who were abusing the gift.

We must remember that Acts is a book of history and transition. It is not an establishment of standard practice in the church. 

Concerning the baptism of the Holy Spirit, the apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthians; For by one Spirit we are all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have all been made to drink into one Spirit (I Cor. 12:13).  The key word here is allAll believers have been baptized into the body of Christ by the Holy Spirit.

Having established that all believers are baptized into the body of Christ by the Holy Spirit, we must ask; do all believers receive the gift of speaking in tongues?  

To answer that question we need to go to I Corinthians 12 where Paul is teaching on the spiritual gifts.  In verses 4-11 he talks about the diversities of gifts given to believers by the same Spirit.  To one is given the word of wisdom, to another the gifts of healing, to another the discerning of spirits, and to another divers kinds of tongues.  The point here is that not everyone receives the same gift.  Not everyone receives the gift of tongues.  There are diversities of gifts.

Later in the same chapter Paul uses the word some.  Some describes how many get certain gifts.  Some receive diversities of tongues, but not all.  In verses 29 & 30 of I Corinthians 12, Paul asks these rhetorical questions; Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?  Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret?  The answer is an understood No!

 Since Scripture says that all believers are baptized by the Holy Spirit but not all believers speak in tongues, then speaking in tongues cannot be the manifestation of the baptism of the Holy Spirit in the church today.  If speaking in tongues is the baptism of the Holy Spirit then all believers should speak in tongues (languages).  The apostle Paul proves that is not the case.  

 You cannot be a Christian and not have the Holy Spirit.  Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his (Romans 8:9b).  Therefore, all Christians are baptized into the body of Christ by the Holy Spirit upon believing. 

To say that one can be a Christian but not have the Holy Spirit, until evidenced by speaking in tongues, is a contradiction of biblical instruction concerning the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, and the distribution of spiritual gifts.  This teaching is not sound bible doctrine.

…..let the word of Christ dwell in you richly…. 

Note:  If you have not read Speaking in Tongues Part I, you should pull it up for review, because it lays a foundation for Part II.  You may find it by going to the top of the left hand column and typing the title into the Search Box.

For a more complete study of this topic please read The Corinthian Catastrophe by George E. Gardner; copyright 1974 by Kregel Publications.

To be Continued…..See Part III

My Testimony Again

       My Testimony

Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare what he hath done for my soul.  Psalm 66:16

I claim to be a Christian.  This is my personal testimony of how I came to the Lord. Every Christian’s testimony is different, but the plan of salvation always includes the following:  the realization of the need to be reconciled to God; a conviction of sin; repentance (changing the mind); a willingness and desire to accept Jesus Christ as personal Saviour; belief in His death, burial, and resurrection; and faith in Christ’s merit alone. 

This is how God worked in my life to bring me to salvation.

While growing up I attended church with my family every time the doors were opened.  I was taught Bible stories and knew the plan of salvation from an early age.  I was baptized as a youth.  I served as janitor of the church, cleaning it every week with one of my siblings.  In addition, I mowed the church yard and shoveled the sidewalks.  I was in the youth group and sang in the church choir.  At times I even participated in church services, but through all of these things I did not have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

The fact that I did not have a relationship with Christ was manifested by my eagerness to sin as I struggled to get out from under my parent’s authority.  My life became characterized by the things done by those whom the Scriptures describe as being alienated from God, but I was having a great time or so I thought.

The difficulty with living in disobedience to direct commands of Scripture and enjoying this lifestyle, was the emptiness left within.  While a student at a small college in the Midwest, I wrote the following: Love is eating away at my soul, and I can do nothing for its control.  I wish someone could help me, but no one can.  I’m destined to die a lonely man.

There were two things wrong with that statement.  First, it wasn’t love eating away at my soul, it was sin. Second, it wasn’t true that no one could help me, the Lord could.  He heard my cry but He had to put me in a position where I would want His help.

The tragic deaths of four young men got my attention.  They died doing things that I had done under similar circumstances.  Something would happen to me and then it would happen to one or two of these young men resulting in death.  The first events were over a year apart, the second set of events were months apart, and the last events were just seven days apart.

When those last two young men died, a fraternity brother said to me: That was you and me last Friday night!  His words became the writing on the wall.  I wasn’t ready to die.

I knew something had to change in my life, but I wasn’t exactly sure what or how.  My sister was home for Christmas, so I asked her if I could go back to Florida with her after the holidays.  She consented after a couple of days of prayer!  I had no job, no money, and no wheels, so I attended church with her where I heard the plan of salvation again.

One night in the spring of 1973 I got on my knees beside my bed and read through the Romans Road in my Bible (see blog article entitled The Romans Road).  I admitted to God that although I knew how to be saved, my life gave no evidence that I had a relationship with Him through His Son.  I told God that I wanted to be saved, and it was then that He not only changed my heart, He began a work in me which would change my life.  That is my testimony of how God brought me to Christ.  What is your testimony?

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold all things are become new.  II Corinthians 5:17

                                             Monty McCoy

If you are unsure about your relationship to God, I would like to invite you to read the blog article entitled; How to Become a Christian.  Just go to the column on the left hand side and type How to Become a Christian into the search window to pull it up.  If you still have questions, you may contact me at:



Husbands quite often think of their wife as something they own. Scripture however teaches that the wife becomes a part of her husband and vice versa.
The two become one, part of each other.

Perhaps this sheds light on the verse that says; But whoso committeth adultery with a woman lacketh understanding: he that doeth it destroyeth his own soul.  Proverbs 6:32

Can a man and a woman who have become one in marriage, literally tear themselves apart through the act of adultery?

A man is to love his wife as he loves his own body and as he loves himself, because she is (Ephesians 5).

…..let the word of Christ dwell in you richly….

Have You Considered My Servant Job?

I have just finished reading through the book of Job.  Here are a couple of observations that I have missed through the years:

  • Job had no idea what was going on in heaven between God and Satan concerning himself.  All Job knew was that all of a sudden he lost everything.  He lost his wealth and then he lost his children without even knowing why.  His friends thought they knew why.  Even Job had his own ideas why.  In the end however, Job realized that all he needed to know was that God is sovereign.  God is in control.
  • Job’s physical suffering was greater than what I had imagined.  His boils were so bad that his friends did not even recognize him…….I missed that.  I always thought that they were indeed painful, but I never imagined that his face was so covered with boils that he would be unrecognizable. 

Speaking in Tongues – Part I

  • The gift of tongues as defined by Scripture:

And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.  And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.  Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language.

And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans?  And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?

Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia, Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes, Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues, the wonderful works of God.                Acts 2:4-11

It is clear in this passage from the book of Acts, that the gift of speaking in tongues was the ability to speak another language without having learned it.  Everyone was amazed to hear the wonderful works of God spoken by the unlearned Galilaeans (Acts 4:13) in his own language!

  • The purpose of the gift of speaking in tongues.

The purpose of this gift as stated in this context was to glorify God by declaring His wonderful works to Jews out of every nation under heaven.  Speaking in tongues was a sign to unbelieving Jews (I Corinthians 14:22a).  This means that whenever the sign gift of speaking in tongues was exercised, unbelieving Jews would be present. 

We would do well to remind ourselves that Jesus came teaching, preaching and healing.  He came teaching, preaching and healing to fulfill Old Testament prophecy.  In so doing, He proved that He is who He said He is: God’s Son, the promised Messiah!  Messiah Jesus came offering to Israel the Kingdom and Himself as her King.

Our understanding of the purpose of the gift of tongues, is rooted in the Old Testament passage that the apostle Paul quotes to the Corinthian church as the proof text for the gift of tongues.  In I Corinthians 14:21 Paul quotes Isaiah 28:11; For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people.  

  •  The historical context of the Old Testament for the New Testament sign gift of speaking in tongues is coming judgment.

Throughout their history God’s people turned away from Him over and over.  God would chastize them, Israel would repent, God would have mercy, and Israel would be restored.  This cycle is repeated over and over throughout the Old Testament.  

At times during these cycles, the people of Israel looked to  unbelieving nations for deliverance from their enemies rather than looking to God.  Israel made alliances with her enemy’s enemies.  Israel chose to trust in man rather than God and God promised severe judgment for such allegiances.  

For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people. Isaiah 28:11

Israel’s enemies were foreign nations who spoke another language or tongue.  God is saying that since my people will not listen to me, I will speak to them from their enemy’s lips, from those who speak the Hebrew language with hesitation (stammering).

To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.  But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken. Isaiah 28:12&13

God offered Israel rest and refreshing but they would not listen.  The drunken leaders (vs 7&8) repeated God’s instructions of line upon line, precept upon precept in sing song mockery.

  •  Israel’s Presumption

Wherefore hear the word of the LORD, ye scornful men, that rule this people which is in Jerusalem.  Because ye have said, We have made a covenant with death (Egypt) , and with hell are we at agreement; when the overflowing scourge (Assyrian army) shall pass through, it shall not come unto us: for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves:  Isaiah 28:14&15

  • God’s Warning.

Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the LORD!  Isaiah 31:1

  • God’s promise to them that receive  His word and are obedient.

Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.  Isaiah 28:16

This cornerstone is identified by Peter in the NT as Jesus Christ.  He that believes in God’s provision will not be forced to flee judgment.

  • The pronouncement of God’s judgment.

And your covenant with death (Egypt) shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge (Assyrian army)  shall pass through, then ye shall be trodden down by it.  From the time that it goeth forth it shall take you:  Isaiah 28:18&19a

The outcome of God’s judgment will be that Egypt will not honor their agreement with Israel.  Instead the stammering lips of a foreign enemy will deliver a message of judgment and the Assyrian army will carry it out unless Israel repents and turns back to God.

  • The OT meaning of the gift of speaking in tongues in the NT.

The apostle Paul quoted Isaiah 28:11 during his discourse to the Corinthians on the gift of speaking in tongues.  The stammering lips of Israel’s enemies in this OT passage forecasts coming judgment as the result of Israel’s rejection of God’s word. 

In like manner the gift of tongues in the NT was a sign gift to unbelieving Israel of coming judgment.  Israel rejected the promised Messiah and His Kingdom.  Only judgment remained.

Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, What do we? for this man doeth many miracles.  If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation.

And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, Ye know nothing at all, Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.  And this spake he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation; And not for that nation only, but that also he should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad.  Then from that day forth they took counsel together for to put him to death.   John 11:47-53

What the Jewish leaders feared would happen, happened anyway because of their unbelief.  But they cried out, Away with him, away with him, crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king but CaesarJohn 19:15  

Israel chose to trust in man rather than God.  The Roman general Titus destroyed Jerusalem in 70 AD.    

Note:  There is also a lesson here for us in interpreting Scripture.  One must interpret Scripture in light of Scripture.  It doesn’t matter what you and I think these passages mean.  What matters is what the Scriptures tell us they mean by the context. 

Speaking by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the apostle Paul quotes Isaiah 28:11 in the middle of his discourse on tongues, making this passage his proof text.  The NT gift of speaking in tongues can only be understood as God intended in the context of Isaiah 28.  The context is coming judgment.

For a more complete study of this topic please read The Corinthian Catastrophe by George E. Gardner; copyright 1974 by Kregel Publications.

 To Be Continued……See Part II.

The Holy Spirit in the Church Today – Unity – A Study in the Book of Ephesians – Part VII

Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.  Ephesians 4:3       

Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:  Ephesians 4:13

In order to achieve unity, there must be separation.

And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.  For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.

Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.  Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God.   He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. 

If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speedFor he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.  II John 6-11.

The doctrine of Christ unites and it divides.  True unity among the brethren is found in the foundational truths of Scripture.   The fundamental doctrines (teachings) of Scripture or the load bearing walls of Christianity must not be compromised.  If they are compromised, the foundations become sand and the structure red tagged.  Religious people will continue to live in the red tagged building.  Believers who try the spirits will leave obediently and join themselves to those who honor the word of God through the teaching and preaching of the Bible.  Unity among believers is based upon the sound doctrinal teachings of the Scripture.

Some say that all religions worship the same god.  Jesus Christ said very plainly; I am the way the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father but by me (John 14:6).  Can a Christian deny the words of Christ?

Some say that Christians can pray for intercession to various individuals and confess their sins to earthly ministers.  The Scripture states very plainly; For there is one God, and one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus;  (I Timothy 2:5).  With whom do you agree?

The professing church declares that if anyone says a person can be saved by faith alone without works; let him be accursed.  The Scripture says: For by grace are ye saved through faith and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast (Ephesians 2:8&9).  Is the professing church pronouncing a curse on the author of Scripture?

Whenever a church places tradition or doctrinal error in a position equal to or above the Scriptures in authority, it is time to divide.  In order to achieve unity, there must be an adherence to truth and a separation from error or false doctrine.

Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!  Psalms 133:1

…….let the word of Christ dwell in you richly……