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The Saviour’s abstinence in His absence

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.

Stream or download The Saviour’s abstinence in His absence

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.

The Parables #32

The Good Samaritan – Part 2

Luke 10:25-37.

“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.

Stream or download The Parables #32

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!

The Parables #31

The Good Samaritan – Part 1

Luke 10:25-37.

Stream or download The Parables #31

1. The Lord Jesus is here responding to the questions of a lawyer. He is a man considered to be an expert in the Law of God, the Mosaic Law.
The use of the word “certain” indicates the authenticity, the “factualness” of this record!

2. The man was there to test the Saviour. That is what the word “tempt” means. He asks a very vital question. It goes to the very heart of true religion and raises the matter that all men should consider. “Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” Verse 25.
This man was not sincere or genuine but was there to try and trip the Saviour up.

3. Note the word “stood”. He had doubtless been sitting listening to the Saviour preach. But he was not benefitted by the Saviour’s words. His heart was hostile to the Saviour. That is how it is with almost all hearers!

4. Please note the Saviour’s response. “He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou?” Verse 26.
The Saviour treated him according to what he claimed to be – an expert in the Law. ‘What then does the Law, of which you are a teacher, say?’ The Word of God was ever the Saviour’s authority and rule!

5. The Lord does not go along with the insincere questions of men! He did not dismiss the man but turned his own question upon himself. You cannot ‘fool’ with God! The Lord Jesus knew all about this man. He was aware of the trap he was seeking to set. He, in turn, sets a trap for the man.

6. The man gives a very good answer. “And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself,” verse 27. He did indeed know what the Law of God taught!

7. The Saviour in turn gives a gracious and wise response. “And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live,” verse 28.
Doubtless, the Saviour’s response frustrated the plan of the man to entrap the Saviour. He was left with an answer which he himself had provided. He could not fault the Saviour. Oh how wise is the Lord!

Sin in the camp

“Israel hath sinned, and they have also transgressed my covenant which I commanded them: for they have even taken of the accursed thing, and have also stolen, and dissembled also, and they have put it even among their own stuff,” Joshua 7:11.

Preached in Kilskeery Free Presbyterian Church, At the morning service, 7th January 2018,
By Rev Ivan Foster (Retired)

Stream or download Sin in the camp

Before the Lord informed Joshua of the presence of sin amongst the people of Israel, that sin had announced itself. The presence of sin was manifested by the terrible fruits which follow it!

1. Pride and carelessness. “And they returned to Joshua, and said unto him, Let not all the people go up; but let about two or three thousand men go up and smite Ai; and make not all the people to labour thither; for they are but few,” verse 3.

2. Failure to consult the Lord. The plan to attack Ai was not the Lord’s plan!

3. Cowardice and retreat. “So there went up thither of the people about three thousand men: and they fled before the men of Ai,  . . . . Therefore the children of Israel could not stand before their enemies, but turned their backs before their enemies, because they were accursed: neither will I be with you any more, except ye destroy the accursed from among you,” verses 4, 12.

4. Complaining and accusing God. “And Joshua said, Alas, O Lord GOD, wherefore hast thou at all brought this people over Jordan, to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites, to destroy us? would to God we had been content, and dwelt on the other side Jordan!” verse 7.
These things betrayed the presence of sin before the Lord revealed it to Joshua. Joshua and Israel should have recognised immediately the cause of their trouble. “But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. Do not err, my beloved brethren,” James 1:14-16.

It was but a repeat of events in the garden of Eden. So it ever will be!!


Sin robs us of God’s blessing and power and is ever the cause of distress, decline and spiritual death amongst God’s people. Nothing else is to blame! Many things are blamed for the trouble, even the Lord, but it is always sin!

1. Cain’s trouble. “And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door,” Gen 4:6-7.

2. Peter’s Trouble. “Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew. And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.” Matt 26:74-75.

3. Ananias and Sapphira’s trouble. Acts 7:1-11.

4. Ephesian Church’s trouble. Rev 2:4-5.


1. Its occurrence went virtually unnoticed. The whole nation had been searched by the Lord before the culprit was found. I do not say none had seen Achan steal but I suggest that any who did, did not think it could possible the “sin” that had so offended God!

2. The items stolen were not of vast monetary value. “When I saw among the spoils a goodly Babylonish garment, and two hundred shekels of silver, and a wedge of gold of fifty shekels weight, then I coveted them, and took them; and, behold, they are hid in the earth in the midst of my tent, and the silver under it,” Joshua 7:21. He didn’t profit by his theft. He could never wear the garment and he could hardly spend the money without betraying his theft. Hence he hid it.
There is no profit in sin!

3. He apparently harmed none! And yet he brought down God’s wrath upon the nation and cost the lives of “about thirty and six men,” Joshua 7:5.

4. He stole from the Lord in direct defiance of His command, yielding to carnal desires. Joshua 6:18-19. He “coveted them,” Joshua 7:21. Sin is a robbing of God and will ever put us in conflict with Him!


1. For the enemies of Israel. The events at Ai gave them the impression that Israel and its religion and her God were fakes! So does sin amongst God’s people! “So they were in the midst of Israel, some on this side, and some on that side: and they smote them, so that they let none of them remain or escape,” Joshua 8:22.
Your sin amongst God’s people will create the impression among the ungodly that there is nothing to be feared in the words of God.

2. For Israel. The loss of life, 7:5. The utter consternation and fear, 7:6. The trauma of the trial, 7:13-15.

3. For Achan. He brought judgment on himself and his family as well as trouble upon Israel, 7:24-26. His name is a byword!


1. Great searchings of heart took place. 7:13.

2. Unhesitating obedience to God’s commands. 7:14-15. Neither family loyalties or compassion of heart was to hinder God’s justice. 7:15.

3. A full confession by the guilty. “And Achan answered Joshua, and said, Indeed I have sinned against the LORD God of Israel, ” Joshua 7:20.

4. A heightened fear of the Lord in the nation.  7:14-15. Here is seen the fear of the Lord amongst the people. They carried out the sentence against Achan and his family. Many baulk at disciplining of sin but it is the evidence of a fear of the Lord. Deut 13:6-11.

Jeremiah: A witness we must heed today, Pt2

The words of Jeremiah the son of Hilkiah, of the priests that were in Anathoth in the land of Benjamin: To whom the word of the LORD came in the days of Josiah the son of Amon king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his reign. It came also in the days of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah, unto the end of the eleventh year of Zedekiah the son of Josiah king of Judah, unto the carrying away of Jerusalem captive in the fifth month,” Jeremiah 1:1-3.

Part two of the message begun in Kilskeery FPC on Lord’s Day evening, 7th Jan, 2018.
Preached at the Monday evening prayer meeting, 8th Jan 2018, By Rev Ivan Foster (Retired)

Stream or download Jeremiah: A message we should heed today, Pt 2

Sermon notes


1. The message he was given to preach was God’s protest! “For I earnestly protested unto your fathers in the day that I brought them up out of the land of Egypt, even unto this day, rising early and protesting, saying, Obey my voice,” 11:7. God is a “PROTESTER”! So must we be!

2. His witness was stoutly resisted by the nation at large. Jer 7:23-25; 25:4; 35:15.

3. He suffered for his faithfulness. Jer 32:1-3. 33:1.

4. He remained tender in his love for Judah. 2 Chron 35:25. His tears are legendary and his book of Lamentations illustrates that.

5. But he was preserved. He was not taken captive.


Jeremiah, in the midst of all the darkness and discouragement was caused to see and speak often of the return of Christ and the glorious days which would follow for Israel. 2600 years ago he was, as it were, shouting out “Behold the Bridegroom cometh.” See Jer 3:14-18. This was virtually Jeremiah’s first sermon!

Please read these passages: 23:6-8, 20; 30:1-24; 31:35-40; 32:36-44; 33:7-9, 14-16; 50:1-20.

This topic was dealt with by Jeremiah:

1. So that we might learn that the coming again of Christ is ever the hope of the people of God. “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ,” Titus 2:13.

2. His witness foreshadows the witness called for in these last days. A crying out against the sins of the age and a bold declaring of the hope of Christ’s return.

3. He was joined in his stand by the great Daniel. Daniel benefitted from Jeremiah’s prophecy. “In the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem,” Dan 9:2.