March 2020

Audio sermons


KICS assembly talks. Current series of KICS studies: “They were Bright and Shining Lights.”

Featured sermon series: The unsearchable riches of Christ. Studies in the Epistle to the Ephesians

Part 17: After conversion, what then?, Pt4; Part 18: After conversion, what then?, Pt5; Part 19: After conversion, what then?, Pt6; Part 20: After conversion, what then?, Pt7; Part 21The Christian’s past

 

“Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast. For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain,” 
Isaiah 26:20-21.

These words speak, of course, of a future day though we see an application for today. As with the people of Israel, on the night of the first Passover, they were to enter their homes, marked by the blood of the Passover lamb, and shut the doors in order to escape the judgment that would befall Egypt, even so it will be one day, and that very soon I believe, when the Lord will rise in indignation to punish the earth for its sins.

How wise to be aware of and prepared for that day by seeking the shelter of the blood of the “Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world,” John 1:29.


The arrogant folly of Westminster

The blind stupidity and the utterly unavailing defiance of God by rebellious sinners that is recorded here will, of course, come to pass and that perhaps not in the too distant future.

However, it has ever been seen in the history of man, though perhaps not quite so blatantly as it will yet be seen. We see a measure of it today in the proposed actions of Boris Johnston’s government regarding changes to the abortion and same sex marriage laws here in Northern Ireland.

Here is a recent newspaper report on the matter as it appeared in the “Belfast Newsletter”, on Wednesday, 25th March 2020. Read more


A reply to Rev Trevor Kirkland’s unjustified attack upon Christians and evangelical denominations who complied with the Government’s ‘social distancing’ requirements and suspended church services, published in a letter to the “Belfast Newsletter.”

It is an excellent response indeed. It will be interesting to see if Mr Kirkland will defy the requirement to stop assembling and endure the consequences!!

“I have no desire to be drawn into a long debate with Rev Kirkland but he has levelled serious charges against thousands of Evangelicals in Northern Ireland without giving any consideration to the fact that brothers and sisters in Christ may have come to a different conclusion to him on the matter of church closures. Read more…


General Presbytery of the Free Presbyterian Church of Ulster

Statement on Behalf of the Presbytery’s Executive Committee

The Presbytery’s Executive Committee, meeting on Thursday afternoon, 19th March 2020, to discuss the increasingly serious situation in the UK created by the coronavirus pandemic, decided that all worship services in all Free Presbyterian Churches are to be postponed with immediate effect. This solemn decision was taken with heavy hearts and with great reluctance. However, this decision was necessary for the following reasons.

It is our Christian duty as a Church to uphold the Lord’s clear instruction in Matthew 22:39 that we should love our neighbour as ourselves. Among other issues this injunction means that, in the midst of this deepening health crisis, we must exercise a duty of care toward our own church families, members and adherents. In addition we are to exercise the same duty of care toward society in general. To proclaim the message of God’s love for sinners in both common and saving grace and then fail to act responsibly in taking all necessary measures to protect them in the face of this virus would be sheer hypocrisy. Consequently, the Executive Committee felt that they had no option but to postpone all gatherings for worship on the Lord’s Day and throughout the week.
The Executive Committee were convinced that the necessity for this decision was further underlined by the startling reports being issued by the Department of Health with respect to the advancement of the virus through social contact in public gatherings. On the same day as the Executive Committee met Mr. Robin Swann, Health Minister for Northern Ireland said that “…in the case of an 80% infection rate, the NI death toll could be in the region of 14,000.”
In Romans 13 we are taught by the Spirit of God to obey the civil government He has placed over us. The UK Government in seeking to prevent the spread of the virus has issued a call to various groupings, including churches, to cease public gatherings. The Executive Committee concluded that we have no option but to obey the directive of the powers that be.
The Executive Committee also focused much on the issue of the public testimony of the Free Presbyterian Church of Ulster. The Committee concluded that due to the pandemic nature of the virus it would be totally irresponsible to run the risk of endangering life by the high probability of spreading the virus through church gatherings. If this were to be the result great shame would be brought upon our testimony as part of the body of Christ.

It must be noted that this decision does not mean that we cease to minister as a church, either to our own congregations or to the wider public. The Committee would encourage brethren to pursue every available avenue of ministry. The Lord has given us modern means in terms of the electronic methods that are available to us today – many of which have already been employed by our churches such as Sermon Audio and Facebook. In recognising the direction of matters some brethren are seriously considering the option of drive-in services.

The Executive Committee would also encourage earnest and protracted prayer for a move of God both among His people and among the lost around us. Undoubtedly the Lord is speaking through this pandemic. Many are deeply fearful. We need to pray that their fear of the virus will be translated into a fear of God and eternal ruin. Clearly there is great opportunity evangelise intensely so that sinners will come to know peace with God through Christ.

This decision pertains only to public gatherings of Christ’s Church. It obviously does not preclude family events such as funerals and weddings.

As you will understand this decision includes the cancellation of the Easter Convention meetings.

By way of notice, the Presbytery’s Charity Commission has informed the NICC that, as a denomination, we will not be taking up the matter of registration of our congregations until 3 months after the restrictions relating to the coronavirus are lifted.

This postponement of church gatherings will continue to until the Lord in His sovereign mercy removes the threat of the virus from our land. Let us seek Him earnestly for this also.

Social isolation: A lesson in Biblical separation!

“Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty,” 2 Corinthians 6:14-18.

‘Social Isolation’ has been defined thus: “Social isolation is a state of complete or near-complete lack of contact between an individual and society.”
The true people of God should not, amidst all the distress that the ‘Coronavirus’ is creating, fail to notice a very clear spiritual lesson which I am sure the Lord would have us learn from this all.

Separation from sin is a very vital element in true religion, though it has been rejected by many in these ‘modern times’!

However, ‘separation’ is taught us from the very commencement of God revealing His Law to His chosen people Israel. The law of separation was to be observed in what they could sow in their fields, what they could eat, what they could wear as well as the company they could keep. Read more


Assembly Speaker Alex Maskey has said a threat has been received of an ‘imminent attack’ against him.

There are few who can play the ‘hypocrite’ like the members of Sinn Fein/IRA!!In the wake of a dissident IRA death threat against the Sinn Fein Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly, Alex Maskey, a statement from Sinn Fein leader here in Northern Ireland, Michelle O’Neill, reported in today’s ‘Irish News’, described the threat against Alex Maskey as “an attack on the whole democratic process”.

That is ripe indeed coming from that organisation which endorsed and supported the slaughter of thousands over a 30 year + period and which is still under the direction and control of those who directed that terrorism, the ‘IRA Army Council ! It is not that long ago that the Police Service of Northern Ireland stated that the IRA Army Council still directed Sinn Fein and made the political decisions. See the 8th November 2019 Belfast Telegraph article: “IRA Army Council retains oversight of Sinn Fein, say police. That those supporters of IRA murder should find themselves now targeted by former compatriots is but an example of poetic justice.

The Bible states it thus: “Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed,” Genesis 9:6; and again: “Then said Jesus unto him, . . . . all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword,” Matthew 26:52. 

The murderers and terrorists of the IRA and their supporters have a harvest awaiting them in eternity, irrespective what may overtake here on earth! “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap,” Galatians 6:7. – IF

(Irish News, 06 March, 2020.) The Sinn Féin MLA said police visited him yesterday to inform him of the threat. Mr Maskey said: “I note that this threat was received in the week when I announced my intention to use the role of Speaker to represent every side of the Assembly chamber and to engage with every section of our community. This threat will not deter me from those events or continuing such efforts in the future.

“As Speaker of the Assembly, I will be clear that intimidation of any elected representative in our democratic institutions is deplorable whether threats of this nature or vile abuse on social media.  It can only be responded to by continuing to work to take our society forward.”

Last month police informed Sinn Féin’s Michelle O’Neill that dissident republicans were planning an attack against her and Gerry Kelly. Ms O’Neill said the threat had been issued after they attended a PSNI recruitment event.

Speaking today, Ms O’Neill described the threat against Mr Maskey as “an attack on the whole democratic process”. “He has been a trail blazing public representative and political activist for almost 40 years and has played a leading role in the peace process,” she said. “In his role as Speaker, Alex Maskey acts as a representative of all the parties and MLAs in the Assembly and all sections of the community.”


Pope lifts the lid on the Vatican’s colossal property empire in London

Pope FrancisThis article appeared in the “Daily Telegraph” on 14th March and was shared with me shortly after.  I was sent the full text of the article for I could not access that ‘subscribers only’ newspaper.

It is to be noted that the article begins with a reference to God’s Word, Matthew 19:24, Mark 10:25, Luke 18:25.  It is a quote that should utterly shame every Pope and his entire entourage throughout the centuries of their existence.

It will not, of course.

However, may the Lord be pleased to use it to highlight the true character of popery to those benighted souls who are besotted by its deceits! Read the article.


The territory of the ‘Old Roman Empire’ back in focus once again!!

The Coronavirus outbreak appears to have started in China but it has quickly spread to Europe and seems to have centred upon those lands that once lay at the heart of the old ‘Roman World’!

The ‘Coronavirus Crisis’ is not just a matter of public health but it is, if anything, a much more serious financial catastrophe!

Major business organisations are facing utter ruin, as are smaller ‘high street’ merchants.

The whole population here in the United Kingdom has been placed under restrictions utterly unknown in our history. Even during World War II, there were not such constraints placed upon the citizenry.

The elderly have been told to stay indoors and avoid contact with virtually everyone and that for the foreseeable future. We have never lived through such circumstances before! What has the Bible to say about this? Read more


The Voice of the Cholera

A message preached by Charles Haddon Spurgeon at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, London, August 12, 1866.

In the midst of all the proclamations, announcements and advice-giving since the beginning of the ‘Coronavirus Crisis’, I have yet to see one person in any position of authority in ‘church or state’ mention the One Person Who has absolute control in this matter and Who should be the first to be consulted and heeded!

I am referring of course to the Lord. I was reminded of the sermon preached by C H Spurgeon on this passage and thought that his words, so wonderfully owned by the Lord throughout the one hundred and twenty eight years since he went home to glory, would make better reading than anything I could write.

His message and his application of God’s Word is an indication of how far the land has drifted in the intervening one hundred and fifty four years. Back then, the Lord was the first refuge considered and sought out in a time of crisis. Now, He is not even mentioned! Surely the ‘perilous times’ of 2 Timothy 3:1 have begun amongst us! – IF

“Can two walk together, except they be agreed? Will a lion roar in the forest, when he hath no prey? will a young lion cry out of his den, if he have taken nothing? Can a bird fall in a snare upon the earth, where no gin is for him? shall one take up a snare from the earth, and have taken nothing at all? Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? shall there be evil in a city, and the Lord hath not done it.”— Amos iii. 3— 6.

WE have all felt grieved when reading our bills of mortality to observe the mysterious spread of cholera in our great city. It is high time that it should be made the subject of special prayer, and that the nation should seek unto the Lord for its removal. While as yet there has been but comparatively little of the evil, we should be humbled under it, that we may be spared a greater outbreak.

There are different ways of looking at this disease. Men viewing it from one point of view alone, have frequently despised those who have regarded it under another aspect. Occasionally Christian men express themselves indignantly concerning those who speak of cholera as the product of ascertained and governable causes, to be checked and even prevented by due attention to the laws of health. I have never shared in that indignation. Read more


The rule that some would have others keep but which they refuse to keep themselves!!!

I was recently informed of the criticism of an Officer of Presbytery directed against me in response to my article, Why This Shameful Silence? It was alleged by this brother that I had done wrong in writing this article without first contacting those against whom I had written, since, he claimed, Matthew 18:15-17 requires such action.

This is a cowardly, pathetic misuse of God’s Word. Please read the article ‘Matthew 18 and the public rebuke of sin’. This article highlights the folly of those who appeal to these verses in response to proper criticism they are unable and unwilling to answer!

Often those who refer to this verse when attempting to fault those who rightly condemn sin are heard condemning the Pope, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Methodist, Presbyterian and Church of Ireland ministers for their public utterances which are contrary to God’ Word. The question must be asked: “Do they first contact those they criticise before issuing their condemnations?” Read more


Stormont can amend abortion and same-sex marriage laws

We have been informed of this through a letter from the Clerk of the Free Presbyterian Presbytery, Rev John Greer. If what the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland told the Free Presbyterian Delegation is true, that is good news indeed.

I use the little word ‘if’ for the simple reason Secretaries of State in the past past have proved deceitful.

However, we trust that this time the truth is being told.

That being so, we wait with prayerful interest on the DUP Free Presbyterian members of the Stormont Assembly putting down an appropriate motion before the Assembly.

One of those who organised the meeting with the Secretary of State is Lord Morrow, an elder in our Dungannon congregation. He would doubtless have the support of  Mr Mervyn Storey, elder in our Ballymoney congregation and Mr Thomas Buchanan, an elder in Castlederg congregation. Between them they should be able to present a pertinent proposal before the Stormont Assembly.

We wait with interest for this to happen. Click here to see the letter as it appeared in the Newsletter.


What moves men to side with murderers and rebels against the Saviour??

A lesson for the Free Presbyterian Church from the Jews’ choice of Barabbas.

“Now at that feast he released unto them one prisoner, whomsoever they desired. And there was one named Barabbas, which lay bound with them that had made insurrection with him, who had committed murder in the insurrection. And the multitude crying aloud began to desire him to do as he had ever done unto them. But Pilate answered them, saying, Will ye that I release unto you the King of the Jews? For he knew that the chief priests had delivered him for envy. But the chief priests moved the people, that he should rather release Barabbas unto them,” Mark 15:6-11

Both Pilate, the Roman Governor and Herod had found no fault in the Saviour. “And Pilate, when he had called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people, said unto them, Ye have brought this man unto me, as one that perverteth the people: and, behold, I, having examined him before you, have found no fault in this man touching those things whereof ye accuse him: no, nor yet Herod: for I sent you to him; and, lo, nothing worthy of death is done unto him. I will therefore chastise him, and release him,” Luke 23:13-16. Read more


Please use the following links to listen to the conference messages.

Lord’s Day: 7.00 pm – Mr Stephen Toms “Differences Between Interpretation and Application of Prophetic Scripture”

Monday: 8.00 pm – Rev Ivan Foster “The Great Importance of Events in the Last Days” (Daniel 7)

Tuesday: 8.00 pm – Mr Stephen Toms “The Arising of False Christs and False Prophets in the Last Days”

Wednesday: 8.00 pm – Rev Ivan Foster “The Vital Information given us of Events in the Last Days” (Daniel 7)

Thursday: 8.00 pm – Mr Stephen Toms “The Religion of the Final Confederation of Nations”

Friday: 8.00 pm – Rev Ivan Foster “The Glorious Inevitability of Christ’s Victory in the Last Days” (Daniel 7)


Worship is impossible where there is an outstanding allegation of wrong doing

Some thoughts on Matthew 5:23-24 by Rev. Andy Foster

Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.

The words of the Saviour recorded here are part of His exposition of the meaning and application of the sixth commandment. In this section of the Sermon on the Mount, the Saviour is enlarging upon the permanent relevance of the Moral Law, summarized in the ten commandments, to the citizens of His kingdom i.e. all His people. Read more


The Burning Bush turns 50 this month

Over the years, we have made friends and established contacts in many, many countries. It is ever a source of amazement to me that from out of the somewhat isolated west of Ulster, there has gone out a witness almost, it can be said, to the ends of the earth. The reports I get from the website contacts indicate that we have readers throughout the five continents. China, Iran, Turkey, and many, many other unlikely countries have those who frequently visit and download from “The Burning Bush” website.

I must say that was never envisaged when we began the witness. But we can but praise the Lord for His blessing upon the efforts made for “Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain,” Psalm 127:1. Read more….


Why this shameful silence??

“And it came to pass, as he went into the house of one of the chief Pharisees to eat bread on the sabbath day, that they watched him. And, behold, there was a certain man before him which had the dropsy. And Jesus answering spake unto the lawyers and Pharisees, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath day? and they held their peace. And he took him, and healed him, and let him go; and answered them, saying, Which of you shall have an ass or an ox fallen into a pit, and will not straightway pull him out on the sabbath day? And they could not answer him again to these things,” Luke 14:16.

The silent response to the Saviour’s challenges stands as a lasting monument to the wicked opposition by these men to Him. They were against Him but could not fault what He was saying or doing.

Such must surely qualify as an utterly shameful and cowardly position to adopt.

Sadly, we see a situation developing before us in the Free Presbyterian Church which bears some resemblance to this scene in Luke’s gospel. Read more


Further follow-up on Ballymoney protest

Here are two pictures taken of two articles in the ‘Coleraine Chronicle’. The first is of a report which appeared two weeks ago and the second is of a letter which appeared last week. May good come of both publications. Click on the images below to read.

February 2020

Audio sermons


KICS assembly talks. Current series of KICS studies: “They were Bright and Shining Lights.”

Featured sermon series: The unsearchable riches of Christ. Studies in the Epistle to the Ephesians

Part 14: After conversion, what then? Part 15: After conversion, what then?, Pt2 Part 16: After conversion, what then?, Pt3; Part 17: After conversion, what then?, Pt4

Other Messages

An ongoing universal conflict involving all but a few. A message preached by Rev. Ivan Foster in Walsham Le Willows e Evangelical Congregational Church, January 26th, 2020.

The testimony of Enoch. A message preached by Rev. Foster at the SGAT meeting on January 24th, 2020.

Christ’s message to the Church at Pergamos. A message preached by Rev. David Creane in Kilskeery FPC, February 16th, 2020.

Funeral service for Mrs. W. Gallagher, held in Kilskeery FPC, February 18th, 2020.

 

A History of Ireland as It Relates to the Ulster Scots

Three programmes on this subject wereprepared by Rev. Foster and originally broadcast on Pastor Ralph Ovadal’s radio programme, ‘Heart of the Matter’ on 14th, 21st and 28th April 2014.

The three broadcasts are entitled:

1. From Patrick to the Rebellion of 1641.
2. From the Commonwealth through the 19th Century.
3. From Home Rule Rejected to Terrorists in Government.

Click here to listen.


Date decided for first ever Fermangah Pride event: Letter of protest from Rev. Foster

In last week’s edition of our local weekly newspaper, “The Impartial Reporter” – a misnomer if there was one – an article appeared carrying the title above.

The article disclosed that a group of local sodomites and most likely some not so local, had announced that:

A date has now been set for a Pride festival to take place in Enniskillen this summer, with planning underway for an event which will celebrate the LGBTQ+ community of this area and beyond. Originally called ‘Enniskillen Pride’ the festival has recently been renamed ‘Fermanagh Pride’ and is due to take place in the county town on Saturday, August 8.”

In response to this distressing disclosure I sent the following letter to the Editor. Please pray that it may be published and touch the hearts of Christians and stir them to pray against this event that the Lord might intervene according to His will. Read more


If not, what then?? A consideration of the same-sex marriage debate

Of late, there have been some reports in the newspapers of the concerns Christians have regarding the Government’s regulations regarding ‘same-sex weddings’!

‘The Christian Institute’ has raised the issue regarding the situation in Northern Ireland. It reported back in January ’02 that: “Public order law will be amended to underline that criticism of same-sex marriage is not an offence. He (former Secretary of State for NI, Julian Smith) also said that equality law is being amended so that religious bodies and staff cannot be sued for declining to take part in a blessing or other event marking a civil same-sex wedding. Changes will also protect the ability of religious organisations to dismiss a staff member who enters a same-sex marriage if that is incompatible with the organisation’s values. The Secretary of State says he is also in discussion with Northern Irish equalities bodies about guidance for employers and schools to make clear that beliefs and opinions about marriage should be respected.” (See here)

It is right that Christians oppose the introduction of wicked laws which openly and flagrantly breach God’s Law. It is also right that when Governments press ahead, as they invariably do, with the introduction of such laws, that Christians demand freedom to be exempt from them. Read more


Murder doesn’t suddenly become legitimate simply because one-fifth of the electorate turns a blind eye

Malachi O’Doherty, Belfast Telegraph February 11th, 2020.

The killing of Paul Quinn asks entirely reasonable questions of Sinn Fein’s fitness to govern, argues Malachi O’Doherty

Sinn Fein supporters are in cheery form this week because of their astonishing performance in the southern election. And some of them are in smug form, too, delighted by the failure of what they saw as a strategy to damage the party.

That is how they represent the discussion last week about the murder of Paul Quinn and the Finance Minister Conor Murphy’s past maligning of him as a criminal.

Even on Monday, callers to the Nolan Show (the biggest programme in the province) accused Stephen of trying and failing to influence an election by interviewing the bereaved parents of Paul Quinn on his radio and television shows. This annoyed them, yet it had no apparent impact on the result. Read more


Free speech defended by court: Police probe into ‘transphobic’ tweets unlawful

The police response to an ex-officer’s allegedly transphobic tweets was unlawful, the High Court has ruled. Harry Miller was visited by Humberside Police at work in January last year after a complaint about his tweets.

He was told he had not committed a crime, but it would be recorded as a non-crime “hate incident”.  The court found the force’s actions were a “disproportionate interference” with his right to freedom of expression.

Officers visited Mr Miller’s workplace and then spoke with him on the phone, and he was left with the impression “that he might be prosecuted if he continued to tweet”, according to a judge.

Speaking after the ruling, Mr Miller, from Lincolnshire, said: “This is a watershed moment for liberty – the police were wrong to visit my workplace, wrong to ‘check my thinking’.”

His solicitor Paul Conrathe added: “It is a strong warning to local police forces not to interfere with people’s free speech rights on matters of significant controversy.” Read more


A follow-up article on the Ballymoney protest

The following article is by Mr Luke Barker and is a follow-up to the report of his protest in Ballymoney on Friday 7th February and which was circulated earlier.

This follow-up has been made necessary by the false reports that have maliciously been spread around.

Surely it says ill of those whose cause must be defended by falsehoods. This vividly reminds me of the reaction to Free Presbyterian protests against ecumenical Presbyterianism, Episcopalianism and Methodistism back in the ‘60s and ‘70s!

It makes sad reading to hear of members of Presbytery sneering at Mr Barker and his placard!

Sadder still is the fact that his experiences in Ballymoney mirrored at least to some degree what was encountered years ago when the battle was brought to the doors of the ecumenical apostasy.

I am encouraged to hear of those ministers and elders who openly congratulated Mr Barker. This bodes well for the future. Read more


A Tribute to Mrs Winifred Gallagher

By Rev Ivan Foster (Rtd), her minister for some 41 years.

Mrs. Gallagher was born on 22nd April 1928. She was close to 92 years old when she was called home on Lord’s Day morning past. She was born in the townland of Drumgowna near Ederny in Co Fermanagh. The family moved to Stranahone, Lack and shortly after to Aghadorra, Dromore in Co Tyrone.

She sought the Lord at an Irish Evangelistic Band gospel mission in Shaneragh Hall, near Dromore, on 7th February 1952. The preachers were Mr Willie Moore and Mr Harold Purvis.

Shortly after, she felt the call of God into full-time service and responded and entered Emmanuel Bible College in Birkenhead. After training there she joined the Faith Mission where she served the Lord for some ten years. During her time of missioning she laboured mainly around Cork in the Republic of Ireland and in Co. Antrim up here in Northern Ireland. Read more

Listen to a recording of the full service here.


A flood of judgement

This weekend has seen some very sad events in Wales, Scotland and England with many hundreds of home and business premises flooded under deep water and damage sustained from very high winds as the storm, ‘Dennis’ swept in.

We here in Northern Ireland have been greatly spared to a very great degree.

Christians are reminded of a solemn truth by the words of the Saviour in Luke 13:1-5.

There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” Read more


The message of God since the world began

“And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David; as he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began,” Luke 1:69-70.

“Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began,” Acts 3:21.

This morning I read Luke 1:39-80 as part of my daily reading. I follow ‘Robert Murray M‘Cheyne’s Bible Reading Calendar’, which I highly commend to all my readers.
When I read the verse 70, I recalled that Peter used similar words to those spoken here by Zacharias the father of John the Baptist. He was speaking under the direct inspiration of the Holy Ghost, verse 67, as was Peter on the Day of Pentecost.

In these two verses you have the very heart, the essence, of the message of ALL the prophets.

Consider just some matters that arise from this truth.
1. The two advents of the Lord Jesus lie at the heart of the gospel message.
2. Both these truths have been known by the people of God since the dawn of time.
3. If we would have a truly Biblical ministry, then we must centre our preaching on these two vital truths. Read more


Email problems

I believe that some who were in receipt of our ‘Burning Bush Articles Email’ may not have received our emails of late. It would appear that their names have been ‘clipped’ from the BB group list as a result of a fault with my email application.

From my research online, it would appear such problems are not unknown.

If you requested your name to be put on our list and did receive emails for a time but they have ceased, please let me know and we will attempt to add your name once again to our list.

We apologise for any inconvenience but I think I can say that ‘it was beyond our control’.


Israel Folau given his livelihood back despite efforts of Bible haters – but at what price?

Many Christians will have saluted the stand taken by the Australian, Israel Folau, against sodomy last year and sympathised with him in the price he had to pay for his stand.

However, the latest development in the story will not be quite so welcomed by those who love the truth of God sincerely. Read this article from the ‘Protestant Revival’ to learn the details.Ivan Foster.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11: “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.”

The enemies of God came out in force last year to make sure that a man widely considered one of the greatest rugby players in the world, Israel Folau, would lose his job simply for taking a stand for God.

Israel Folau was seen as the star of the Australian rugby union international side which was preparing for last autumn’s World Cup and a major star in the Australian league.

Read more on the Protestant Revival website


Vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked

“For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment; and spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly; and turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly; and delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;) the Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished,” 2 Peter 2:4-9.

I was made to think once more of the words of Peter regarding Lot. “Just (righteous) Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked.” That which brought these words before me were some of the headlines on the BBC News sites. They read:

  • “I don’t remember not wanting to wear dresses” (These were the words of a ‘man’!
  • “Same-sex marriage: Couple ‘excited but nervous’ to become first in NI”
  • “Phillip Schofield announcement: How it feels when your partner comes out as gay”
  • “What it’s like when your parent comes out as LGBT” Read more

DUP and Leo Varadkar have helped to sanitise Sinn Fein and propel them to victory in Dublin, says Jim Allister

Published by Belfast Newsletter: 06:00 Monday 10 February 2020

Unionists have reacted to Sinn Fein’s success, with the TUV attacking those who “sanitised” the republican party and the UUP describing the result as indicating “interesting times.”

Jim Allister QC MLA said “In the Republic’s election Leo Varadkar is reaping what he sowed. By insisting Sinn Fein was fit for government in Northern Ireland, and must be included, he validated and sanitised the party of the IRA.”

The TUV leader added: “Likewise, by the DUP making Sinn Féin’s elevation into Stormont government possible, they short-sightedly endorsed them as a party fit for government. Read more


Protest outside Free Presbyterian Presbytery meeting in Ballymoney church, Friday 7th February 2020.

The following account of the protest and the leaflet distributed were sent to me by Mr Luke Barker, the one who mounted the protest.

Mr Barker is a graduate of the Whitefield College of the Bible Missionary Course. He is a communicant member of a Free Presbyterian church and speaks frequently at Free Presbyterian meetings.

He recently took part in a protest in Armagh Anglican Cathedral led by Rev Daniel Henderson and accompanied by Rev Paul Hanna and Rev David Creane. (See here)

I have no doubt that Mr Barker’s protest will have aroused the hackles of some but I support him 100%! Read more… 

Matthew 18 and the public rebuke of sin

Below is an article by Rev Andy Foster, Penticton Free Presbyterian Church, which first appeared on his blog 7 years ago. It answers the the very wrong use of the verses 17 and 18 of Matthew 18 which so many opponents of the open and public rebuking of sin, required by the Lord and practised by His servants throughout the ages, love to quote against those who obey God and stand up for the ‘crown rights of King Jesus and the crown jewels of His gospel’! 

Doubtless there will be those who will seek to apply them erroneously against Luke Barker’s protest! – Rev Ivan Foster.

“Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.” (Matthew 18:15-17)
Very often the first response to any public witness against sin, or the public censure of a Christian who has sinned publicly, is an accusation that to make such a public denunciation is contrary to the Saviour’s teaching in this passage. Usually it is asserted that there cannot be a public censure of sin until private overtures have been made to the offender. This has the effect of diverting attention from the original error and focuses attention on the one trying to protest against it. But what does this passage teach? Is it addressing the matter of public sin at all? Read more


The Saviour praying in the garden of Gethsemane

Did He show ‘unwillingness’ to go to the cross?

There is a constant need to counter the terrible notion that Christ ‘baulked’ at the cross in the Garden of Gethsemane. Personally, I cannot understand that He Who ordained the sufferings of the cross as the means of the salvation of His elect, and that from all eternity, should seek to withdraw from its sufferings in Gethsemane!

Christ told His disciples repeatedly that He would suffer and die and rise again the third day. Are we to believe that for a time He Who is TRUTH contemplated breaking His Word?

I say that the very idea of this is shamefully wicked and wrong!

Here is an article I wrote back some five years ago. My reading of Mark 9:4 this morning and the cross reference in Luke 9:30-31, in which is the mention of Moses and Elijah speaking with Christ on the Mount of Transfiguration of the Saviour’s death at the cross.

The word ‘accomplish’ highlights that they talked of the Saviour ‘fufilling’, ‘completing’ the task given Him of His Father in eternity! Neither Moses and Elijah saw any ‘baulking’ by the Saviour on the eve of His death at the cross. These verses served to reinforce my conviction on this matter.  Read more

Two important statements from Jim Allister MLA

Below are two important statements from Jim Allister MLA. The first is on the latest folly of the new Stormont Assembly, ‘Justice Minister’, Naomi Long and the second on the need for the ‘Minister of Finance’, Sinn Feiner, Paul Murphy, to resign after it is acknowledged that he lied about a statement he made following the murder by the IRA of Paul Quinn, a young Roman Catholic. Read more


‘Compassionate’ murder!!

A news item entitled, “Abortion: Health bodies want laws for ‘safe and compassionate’ care”, leads on the BBC Northern Ireland news site today. It features a call from a number of organisations, all of which labour under the public image of ‘caring’ organisations!

They are the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG), the Royal College of Midwives and the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare.

They are calling for abortion to be legalised up to six months of pregnancy. At six months an unborn baby, though premature, is utterly capable of survival.

Whoever these organisations are seeking to be ‘safe and compassionate’ toward, it is certainly not toward the baby they wish to slay! Pro-abortionists are demanding that the murder of these little ones be legalised! These abortionists declare: “This system will not only safeguard women’s rights, but will also facilitate our members to provide high quality care to women in NI.” What hypocrisy! ‘Safeguard women’s rights’, ‘high quality care to women in NI’! The price of this ‘kindness is the murder of the unborn! Read more


The reaping day begins for the DUP

The report below, in the Belfast Newsletter of February 3rd, signals the beginning of a reaping of the duplicity of the DUP with regards its promotion of the ‘Renewable Heat Incentive’ (RHI) which it abandoned, along with those who were persuaded by the promises issued to potential customers who invested heavily in order to avail of the benefits of the scheme. The DUP dumped the scheme in order to placate Sinn Fein and gain its agreement to re-enter power-sharing and so get the Stormont Assembly up and running again and Mrs Foster back in as First Minister!

As is so often the case, the people who really suffer are those who believed the politicians, who generally are only striving after their own advancement. It has already been repeatedly reported in the press that senior DUP staff members benefitted from the scheme. Read more


The blind folly of an ever more vocal minority

Here is a ‘screenshot’ of a headline posted on Thursday January 16th, 2020, on the BBC Northern Ireland news site.

The words of the headline are those of a person claiming to be a ‘woman’ but who was born a male and is therefore still a male, irrespective of the unnatural claim made or the government laws endorsing such claims or the ranting of the many pervert-supporting lobbyists active everywhere!

In a most ironic fashion this headline is true. ‘Transgenderism’ is a lifestyle which most certainly leads to a dead end! Nothing, humanly speaking, can come of it. Read more


Evil ‘christianised’!!

As I return from a trip to England, where I had a preaching engagement or two, I was sent a link to the article below along with a picture of the first part of the story. The picture ‘explains’ the nature of the story!!

The very headline is offensive enough but this is the theme of a “remarkable (disgusting) story . . . revealed in a talk given at a public meeting in Belfast Bible College, which was streamed online.” So says the report in the Belfast newsletter of today – with the exception of the word in brackets which I added!!

It is supposed to be a tale of the distress caused by the vileness of ‘transgenderism’ but instead it turns into nothing more than an ‘explaining away’ of this depravity! Nowhere is there a word of Biblical denunciation of this wickedness or a mention of the hell to which it will bring those deceived by it!

That the narrator of this tale of perversion is a supposed pastor and it is evident from the report that he does not repudiate his ‘father’s’ perverted lifestyle but rather eulogises him, is a display of the state into which so-called ‘evangelicalism’ has sunk. It is to be noted that it was publicised and commended by the “Evangelical Alliance’ and took place in Belfast Bible College. Read more


The final sell-out of Ulster by Westminster

Below is an article taken from the “Belfast Newsletter” of February 1st, 2020.  It highlights the ineptitude of the DUP’s response to Boris Johnston’s betrayal of this part of the United Kingdom.
It also highlights the total absence of any spirit of fight or resistance within the DUP. Having linked itself up to rabid republicanism it is not likely that it will show any resistance to the accelerated drift towards a ‘united Ireland’, so much desired by the DUP’s stablemate, Sinn Fein.

Where do all this betrayal and double-dealing and political cowardice spring from? To answer that we must look for the source of our forefathers’ spirit of resistance to betrayal by London in their day. That source was Bible Protestantism! Read more


Free Presbyterian Protest disrupts service for (so called) Ecumenical Christian Unity in St Patrick’s Church of Ireland Cathedral, Armagh.

(A report compiled by Rev Paul Hanna, minister of Mt Merrion FPC, Thursday 23rd January 2020 )

‘Father’ Tony Currer (a Roman Catholic priest appointed by the Vatican to promote relations between mainstream Protestant denominations and the Roman Catholic church within the UK) was due to be the keynote preacher at an Ecumenical gathering held last night (Wednesday) in the Church of Ireland Cathedral in the ecclesiastical capitol of Ireland – Armagh City.  The ‘wrecked and derelict boat’ is a fitting symbol of the ‘Ecumenical Movement’ which is doomed to utter failure because it is not of God.

A group of Free Presbyterian ministers, who had been informed that the meeting was due to take place, had made their way to the Cathedral in order to stage a protest and voice their opposition and concern to the inclusion of a Roman Catholic priest due to take part in the service. Read more


Doomsday clock – WRONG

This little article was prompted by a headline I saw on the website of the American news agency – ‘USA Today’.

Once again, in his own foolish benighted manner, man was speculating on that which all mankind knows inherently, instinctively: This age will come to an end!
However, his knowledge of this truth has been greatly marred by the fall in Adam and consequently, he has engaged in all sorts of foolish speculations.
This article on the ‘USA Today’ website is an example of that.

I want to just set forth as few Bible truths on the matter for the comfort and instruction of Christians and as a warning to the unsaved, unprepared sinner.
The headline on “USA Today” website read: We’re closer to destruction than ever before: Doomsday clock reset to 100 seconds to midnight

As a headline it is both right and wrong. Read more


Protestors with scripture placards picket official launch of Mid Ulster Pride Parade

I am so pleased and thankful for the Free Presbyterian protest in Cookstown last night against the evil gathering of sodomites and its defenders in a hotel in Cookstown, Co. Tyrone. The following report from the Belfast Newsletter gives details of that protest. May the Lord be pleased to bless it as He did so wonderfully in past years,.

A protest organised by the Free Presbyterian churches of Mid Ulster outside the official launch of the Mid Ulster Pride Parade in Cookstown on Thursday night.
Published: 09:17 Friday 17 January 2020, Belfast Newsletter

Free Presbyterians last night protested outside a Cookstown hotel while inside the Mid Ulster Pride committee officially launched its parade and associated events.
Eighty Protestors with placards stood outside the Royal Hotel while inside a conference entitled ‘Blessed are the Queer’ was unveiled for April 1.

 It will feature two high-profile speakers from the Presbyterian Church in Ireland, Prof Laurence Kirkpatrick, a former lecturer at the church’s theological training college in Belfast, and Rev Cheryl Meban from Ulster University.

 Prof Kirkpatrick was sacked from Union Theological College Belfast last year over media comments on same-sex relationships, and his participation in the forthcoming conference is likely to cause debate within the church.scribe Today

 Free Presbyterian minister Rev Marcus Lecky from Coalisland (should read Cookstown – IF) had called for opposition to the Mid Ulster Pride parade “first by prayer, and then by all other lawful and peaceful methods”.

“Our placards are carrying scriptures about homosexuality, the true meaning of love, and the gospel message and the love of God towards sinners,” he said.

Earlier this week he said that “a sad, stark and significant choice has been forced upon the people of Mid-Ulster – will they accept and perhaps even support the reported forthcoming Rural Pride’ event, or will they follow the teachings of Jesus Christ?”

The letter was signed by Rev Marcus Lecky from Cookstown, Rev John Armstrong from Dungannon, Rev Peter McIntyre from Clogher Valley, Rev Colin Mercer from Omagh and Rev Timothy Omerod from Sixmilecross.

 “For almost two millennia”, they said, “the entirety of Christendom accepted that Jesus Christ – and all the Scriptures – taught that homosexuality was sinful” and despite “much misinformation… the truth of God’s Word remains unchanged”.

The “very last thing” the area needs is more Pride, they countered, saying Christ commands “true humility” and repentance from homosexuality, stealing, adultery, envy, vengeance and all other sins.

Motivated by “concern and love for our Saviour, our society and the souls of others” they say the parade will “be burned into the memories of the young and impressionable” but that future generations “deserve the same traditional family upbringing that most of us have enjoyed”.

In closing, they urged every Christian to oppose the parade “first by prayer, and then by all other lawful and peaceful methods”.

 But Coalisland Rector Rev Andrew Rawding, who is vice chair of the Mid Ulster Pride Committee, took an opposite view.


The wicked lies that form the basis of the new Stormont agreement

I feel compelled to publish articles which highlight the unbelievable treachery of the recent ‘Power-Sharing’ deal that the DUP has signed up to with Sinn Fein/IRA!

The article below in the ‘Belfast Newsletter’ of January 16th sets out the alleged treachery of the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, a man who has manifested total disdain for the opinions of the Unionist people.

If what has been alleged in this article is true then deliberate lies were told about the Government’s future plans regarding the issue of ‘legacy’, the resolving of the issues of criminality stemming from the years of IRA terrorism. I suppose when we remember Boris Johnston’s deceit regarding the impact of the Brexit deal on Northern Ireland, it is not really surprising.

What fools are they who depend upon the DUP for ‘deliverance’!!! Read more


DUP councillor Spence shows support for rainbow flag at Army HQ

This is the headline of an article in the Belfast Telegraph of January 17th.

It reveals to us the heart of the DUP. Sodomy is openly supported and opposition to it condemned and SILENCE marks those Christians who insist on retaining membership of the party.

Since last May, when the DUP endorsed a sodomite candidate in the local council elections, there has been no significant protest from those who profess Christ, especially those who belong to the Free Presbyterian Church. Neither have they opposed the reforming of the political alliance of the party with terrorist supporting Sinn Fein/IRA.

Disaster will surely befall such compromise and betrayal of God’s truth.