Ivan Foster is a recently retired minister in the Free Presbyterian Church of Ulster. Until November 2009 he was minister of Kilskeery Free Presbyterian Church. He continues to preach and write as the Lord gives opportunity. Website:
Ivan has written 293 articles so far, you can find them below.
1. There was little help for the poor wounded traveller. “And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side,” verses 31 and 32.
The word “chance” means “by accident”! They stumbled upon the man. They had no intention of going to him to help!
Mere religion has nothing to offer the poor sinner! Rather it exists to benefit from he sinner! The priest and the Levite would have been happy to see the man in the temple and have taken from him his gifts and offerings but they had nothing for him in his hour of need!
2. Help came from a very unexpected source. “But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him,” verses 33-34. 3. Seven things about the deliverer.
a. He was a Samaritan. How despised was the Samaritan in the yes of the Jew. “He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God. Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?” John 8:47-48. The Samaritan was as a ‘devil’!!
b. He felt differently toward the man.
c. He acted differently from the levite and priest.
d. He placed himself in danger. Is that not what jesus did for us?
e. He picked him up and carried him to safety. “And . . . . set him on his own beast,” verese 34. He place him where he had been seated. “ . . . they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years,” Revelation 20:6. That is how high Christ will lift us up!
f. He covered all his costs.
g. He promised to return for him. Praise God jesus is coming again one day! Back for us individually. “Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord,” 1 Thessalonians 4:17.
1. The path of Christ-rejection and disobedience to God is a dangerous road to travel. The road to Jericho was a robbers’ stronghold! A notoriously dangerous place. Many places where the robber can hide on the 15 miles of the roadway!
The word “fell” carries the meaning of being encompassed, like fish in a net. There was, history tells us, a place on the road called “bloods” because of the bloodshed that regularly was shed there. How many sorrows and grief man meets on the road of life! “Their sorrows shall be multiplied that hasten after another god,” Psa 16:4
“Many sorrows shall be to the wicked: but he that trusteth in the LORD, mercy shall compass him about,” Ps 32:10
“Evil shall slay the wicked: and they that hate the righteous shall be desolate,” Ps 34:21.
“Evil pursueth sinners: but to the righteous good shall be repayed,” Proverbs 13:21.
“Woe unto the wicked! it shall be ill with him: for the reward of his hands shall be given him,” Isaiah 3:11.
“There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked.” Isaiah 57:21.
“For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows,” 1 Tim 6:10.
Here is an assurance given by one who may be called an authority on God and His faithfulness in answering prayer. These are the words of Paul.
“But after long abstinence Paul stood forth in the midst of them, and said, Sirs, ye should have hearkened unto me, and not have loosed from Crete, and to have gained this harm and loss. And now I exhort you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man’s life among you, but of the ship. For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, Saying, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee. Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me,” Acts 27:21-25.
In our text we have:
I. AN ASSURED SUPPLY.
“God shall supply.” Paul can so speak because:
1. Of the promises of God to answer prayer. “And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it,” John 14:13-14. “And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us,” 1 John 5:14.
2. God has all power to answer prayer. “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think,” Ephesians 3:20. “Is any thing too hard for the LORD?” Genesis 18:14. “Then came the word of the LORD unto Jeremiah, saying, Behold, I am the LORD, the God of all flesh: is there any thing too hard for me?” Jer 32:26-27.
3. The history of God’s response to His people’s cries. “And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians keep in bondage; and I have remembered my covenant. Wherefore say unto the children of Israel, I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched out arm, and with great judgments,” Exodus 6:5-6.
“Wherefore the LORD brought upon them the captains of the host of the king of Assyria, which took Manasseh among the thorns, and bound him with fetters, and carried him to Babylon. And when he was in affliction, he besought the LORD his God, and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers, And prayed unto him: and he was intreated of him, and heard his supplication, and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD he was God,” 2 Chronicles 33:11-13.
II. AN ABUNDANT STORE
“According to his riches in glory.”
1. Immeasurable riches. Who can measure God’s riches. “The earth is the LORD’S, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein,” Psalm 24:1.
2. Eternal riches. They do not decline or lessen.
3. Freely available riches. God possess all things and He can use them as and when He likes! Jonah’s whale. The locusts and flies of Egypt. The colt the foal of an ass.
III. AN APPOINTED SOURCE
“By Christ Jesus.” The Saviour is the means by which God’s blessings come!
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ,” Ephesians 1:3.
“For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell,” Colossians 1:19.
“In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge,” Colossians 2:3.
“For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily,” Colossians 2:9.
“And when all the land of Egypt was famished, the people cried to Pharaoh for bread: and Pharaoh said unto all the Egyptians, Go unto Joseph; what he saith to you, do,” Genesis 41:55.
“His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it,” John 2:5.
It is to the Saviour we must go.
It is His name we must plead.
It is upon His merits we must rely.
Kilskeery FPC Communion Service message, Lord’s Day, 14th January 2018, at 3.00 pm
Preacher : Rev Ivan Foster (Rtr)
“But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom,” Matthew 26:29.
“Verily I say unto you, I will drink no more of the fruit of the vine, until that day that I drink it new in the kingdom of God,” Mark 14:25.
“For I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come,” Luke 22:18.
The Kingdom of God amongst men began with the salvation of Adam. All the OT saints were in it. “And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven,” Matthew 8:11.
Entrance into the kingdom has ever been by way of the new birth. “Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God,” John 3:5.
Whenever the gospel is preached the kingdom is brought near. “And when Jesus saw that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art not far from the kingdom of God,” Mark 12:34.
There have been different dispensations of the kingdom. The Patriarchs, the Mosaic Law and today’s administration, the age of the gospel and the power of the Holy Spirit. “And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That there be some of them that stand here, which shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power,” Mark 9:1.
There is a future manifestation of the kingdom. And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh. And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees; when they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand. So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand,” Luke 21:23-31.
It is to the coming of that era that the Saviour is referring in our texts.
I. Here is an aspect of the communion remembrance feast that is often overlooked or ignored.
“I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” This clearly states something which does not fit into the eschatology of many who deny that there is a Millennial Kingdom so these words are largely ignored.
II. It refers to a most happy reunion.
“I drink it new with you.” It surely speaks of celebration, a gathering again of the lord with His people of which the last supper was a foreshadowing.
“And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed (happy) are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God,” Revelation 19:8-9.
III. There are three different terms used of the kingdom in the three accounts of the last supper.
“Drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” A Family Gathering.
“Drink it new in the kingdom of God.” The world’s day is over. “And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever. And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God, Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned. And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth,” Revelation 11:15-18.
“I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come.” There is a reference to a future manifestation of God’s kingdom, “shall come.”
The kingdom of God is amongst us today but there is a manifestation of it that lies in the future. As the kingdom of God in the days of Abraham differed in its administration from how it appeared in the Mosaic age and again from how it appears today so there is a future period in which it will differed yet again – the Millennial Age when the Saviour will directly govern the affairs of this world and His people will reign with Him.
“And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years,” Revelation 20:4.
The Communion Table and its divinely appointed emblems speak to us today of that coming kingdom.
“And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead,” Luke 10:30.
We noted at the close of our last study that the lawyer the man was determined to yet get one over on the Saviour. “But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour?” Verse 29. He was most anxious to show his friends that he still had the better of the Saviour in this discussion!
1. Oh how man sacrifice their souls on the altar of public esteem! I mean by that, that there many people who put impressing their friends well before the “well done of God”!! “Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue: for they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God,” John 12:42-43.
I think that he realised that he had been ‘wrong-footed’ by the Saviour and he now attempted to hide the confusion he was in. But he only digs the hole deeper for himself for the Saviour’s answer is one of glorious gospel truth!
Man cannot ‘outsmart’ God! Young people, learn that well.
2. The story the Saviour tells was an actual occurrence. This really took place. “A certain man.” Perhaps some listening knew of the incident!
3. It pictures for us mankind’s journey downward. It is a downard road! Jerusalem is a picture of where men dwelt before he sinned. “Beautiful for situation, the joy of the whole earth, is mount Zion, on the sides of the north, the city of the great King,” Psa 48:2.
Jericho is the city which pictures the destination of sinful man! “Cursed be the man before the LORD, that riseth up and buildeth this city Jericho,” Joshua 6:26.
It was a city under God’s judgment. That is where sinful man is travelling to! “For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them,” Gal 3:10. Men do not like being told that!