Category Archives: Uncategorized

An Apology

It has come to my attention that there are advertisements cluttering this MLJ website. Please note that this is due to the web host (WordPress) and not me. I never see the ads because I use an ad-blocker, and so I forget about them. But my wife pointed out the ads for a toenail fungus remedy on the last post, so I thought I needed to apologize.

I am now in the process of moving the content to a web host that will not force advertising on me and the few readers of this site. The web address will remain the same – – but it will just be hosted somewhere else.

Another possible alternative would be to pay the $4 per month (or $48 per year) to remove the ads. But, as money is tight now (even that small amount), and since I have more time than money, I’ll opt for the move.

Please accept my apologies if you have been offended by the ads!

Sean Richardson

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The primary purpose of the Church

preachingI would lay it down as a basic proposition that the primary task of the Church is not to educate man, is not to heal him physically or psychologically, it is not to make him happy. I will go further; it is not even to make him good. These are things that accompany salvation; and when the Church performs her true task she does incidentally educate men and give them knowledge and information, she does bring them happiness, she does make them good and better than they were. But my point is that those are not her primary objectives. Her primary purpose is not any of these; it is rather to put man into the right relationship with God, to reconcile man to God. This really does need to be emphasised at the present time, because this, it seems to me, is the essence of the modern fallacy. It has come into the Church and it is influencing the thinking of many in the Church—this notion that the business of the Church is to make people happy, or to integrate their lives, or to relieve their circumstances and improve their conditions.

– Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Preaching and Preachers

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

A watershed issue

One of the links that I’ve had on this website for years is the link to Adrian Warnock’s articles on Dr. Lloyd-Jones. Sadly, I will no longer link to his page due his endorsement of sexual acts outside of marriage. I’m sorry that some people have a hatred for those who engage in homosexual acts, but that cannot undo God’s Word or His nature, or their need to repent of their sin.

This issue is probably going to be THE watershed issue of our day, but this has not come about overnight. This all started back in the 1800’s when churches began to permit those who questioned the inspiration of the Bible to teach in the seminaries and pastor congregations. Liberalism had enough momentum to have J. Gresham Machen kicked out of the Presbyterian Church, USA, after he had so adequately diagnosed what the real issue was.

And that issue is still today the same as it was in Machen’s day – is the Bible authoritative or not? The issue of homosexual acts is not about rights, but about the nature of sin and morality. It’s not about the redefinition of marriage, but about the redefinition of sin. And to redefine sin is to redefine (or change) the whole nature of our redemption and salvation, which therefore redefines (or changes) the One who redeems and saves.

But the Bible is plain – “I am the Lord, I change not” (Malachi 3:6) and “Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Dead links

I have been looking through the site and have noticed quite a few dead links here and there. All the articles from Banner of Truth and Evangelical Times are broken, as well as most everything in the biography section.

Hopefully this will be corrected soon.

And if anyone reading this happens to know of good material about Dr. Lloyd-Jones that I don’t have linked here, or if you happen to have the correct links, just send me an email and I’ll add or change as necessary.

Thank you for your patience.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized


As you might have noticed, I haven’t updated the MLJ Online site in some time. Some of this is due to work demands (I’m a high school teacher and preach every Sunday) and some of this is due to fact that I’ve been dealing with cancer for the past 2 or 3 months.

I was diagnosed with oral cancer on my tongue back in July and then had surgery at the end of August. The recovery from the surgery has gone very well, but I’m still looking at 6 weeks of radiation treatment. The good news is that I should be cancer-free and basically back to normal by the end of the year.

As I’ve gone through all this I’ve certainly pondered the issues of miraculous healing, as opposed to healing that is aided by doctors and technology. I do believe in immediate, divine, supernatural healing. But I also believe it is rare, as miracles by definition should be. Up to the morning of my surgery, I was still hoping for miraculous healing. However, God chose to use modern medicine, modern technology, and doctors and nurses to heal me. As a result of this, I was driven to look to Him in ways I never had before, trusting in Him like never before. Scripture became much more than just a text, it became a living Word to me. If I had been miraculously healed, I would have missed all the precious lessons of God’s love and patience and promises held out to us in His Word.

I also learned a lot about the fellowship of suffering. I had never before needed help. But now I felt (and still feel) the need of help from God’s people. Cards, letters, emails, phone calls, visits, and especially prayers – I had never really needed any of these things before from other people. But because I had to go through some major surgery, I know now how important it is for us as Christians to help others in need and how much those in need are helped by these things.

I believe Dr. Lloyd-Jones would concur with what I’ve written above. He spent a lot of his life dealing with these very issues because of his dual role of being a preacher and a medical doctor at the same time. But he understood the limits of medicine because he knew that just because you could heal a man physically, didn’t mean it would benefit him spiritually. So if we are to truly be of benefit to others, it is the spiritual healing that needs to come first, and only then will any physical healing be of any real value.

I am in the process of the physical healing, but there has been a tremendous spiritual healing (or quickening) because I have been forced by God into this position by the lack of miraculous healing. I am now much more fit to sympathize with and be of value to others who might also be going through similar incidents. And because of this, though I never would have chosen this in a million years, I’m glad that it’s happened this way.

– Sean Richardson

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

A Critique of a Critique on Sensual Worship

Note: This was published on my other blog a month or so ago and I’m only now getting around to posting it here. I felt it appropriate to add here since both Paul Helm and Iain Murray were friends of Dr. Lloyd-Jones.

At the risk of getting in over my head, I would like to critique Paul Helm’s critique of Iain Murray’s article on sensuality in music. I would encourage you to read Mr. Murray’s article first and then Mr. Helm’s critique before you read my response.

I happen enjoy Mr. Helm’s writings and usually find him to be very helpful. I even have a link to him on my blogroll. However, on this issue, I must register my disagreement.

The main thrust of Mr. Helm’s argument seems to be that the senses are always engaged in whatever form worship takes. Even in a plain, Puritan-like worship, the flesh can still exalt itself. In this I agree.

But he goes one step further by stating that we can never really know how worship really should take place:

The New Testament is not much help over music and singing, is it? Psalms  and hymns and spiritual songs, decency and orderliness, making melody  in your hearts. Apart from that, nothing much.

Nothing much? Isn’t this the point that is being missed? According to the New Testament, there really isn’t that much said about music. Shouldn’t we therefore assume that music (or musical accompaniment) should be held to a minimum and downplayed? The fact that there are no musicians authorized, but pastors and teachers definitely are, should indicate the Scriptural position.

Another problem with Mr. Helm’s critique is that he somewhat misses Mr. Murray’s point. Mr. Murray isn’t arguing about whether activities should or shouldn’t be permitted based on whether or not we can turn them into a sinful sensual activity. No, the argument being made by Mr. Murray is that churches are now purposely using the innate sensuality present in music in the hopes of reaping spiritual benefits. The concern is about how easily music deceives us into thinking we are spiritual when we are not.

Quoting Jonathan Edwards on Religious Affections is no help here. If musical instrumentation had been present in the worship of the New England Congregationalists in the 1740’s, we might have had Edwards’ thoughts about it. But, like most of the Reformed churches of that day, they did not use musical instruments. Edwards is commenting on the reaction people had to the preaching of the gospel during a time of spiritual revival and awakening. And his purpose, much like that of Mr. Murray, was to keep people from deceiving themselves into thinking that they are spiritual when they are not.

If music is neutral, as Mr. Helm seems to imply, then why do so many in the churches seem intent on changing things? If it is truly neutral, then it doesn’t matter. And if it doesn’t matter, then why are so many itching to change it? The push to change is a tacit admission that music isn’t neutral, or else there would be no reason to change. And this is the very danger Mr. Murray is warning us about.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Interview with Jonathan Catherwood

Jonathan Catherwood, Dr Lloyd-Jones’ grandson, has been interviewed at the Christian Book Notes website. He is currently working with the Martyn Lloyd-Jones Recording Trust and has also written about his grandfather.

Read it here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized