Tag Archives: Daily Christian Quotes

Self-sins!

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Self-sins!

“But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be¬†lovers of themselves” 2 Timothy 3:1-2¬†

(A.W. Tozer)

We all have a number of self-sins:
  self-righteousness,
  self-pity,
  self-confidence,
  self-sufficiency,
  self-admiration,
  self-worth,
  self-love and 
  a host of others like them!
These self-sins are not something we¬†do, they are something we¬†are–and therein lies both their subtlety and their power. They dwell too deep within us and are too much a part of our natures, to come to our attention–until the light of God is focused upon them.¬†

The grosser manifestations of these sins–egotism, pride, arrogance, self-elevation, self-promotion–are strangely tolerated in¬†Christian leaders, even in circles of impeccable orthodoxy! They are so much in evidence as actually, for many people, to become identified with the gospel. I trust that it is not a cynical observation to say that they appear these days to be a¬†requisite for popularity¬†in some sections of the¬† visible Church.¬†

Promoting¬†self¬†under the guise of promoting¬†Christ–is currently so common as to excite little notice!¬†

“They do not have pure motives as they preach about Christ. They preach with selfish ambition, not sincerely” Philippians 1:17¬†

Home, sweet home! There is no place like home!

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Home, sweet home! There is no place like home!

(James Smith, “Rills from the Rock of Ages”, 1860)

“These all died in faith . . . they confessed that they were¬†strangers¬†and¬†pilgrims¬†on the earth” Hebrews 11:13

The day of life with them is ended. Its duties are ended. Its responsibilities are past. Its hours are fled away.

What a trying day some of them had! How stormy. How sultry. How often overcast. How gloomy. But it is now past–and past forever!¬†The toils of the wilderness are over!¬†They had much to afflict and pain them . . .¬†
  a difficult and dangerous journey,
  a long wearisome march,
  many a heavy cross to carry,
  many a stubborn foe to face,
  many a painful doubt,
  numerous gloomy fears.

But now the¬†wilderness¬†is all behind them! The¬†afflictions¬†of the pilgrimage¬†are terminated. Those sufferings were sharp, and some of them continued long. Many of them were endured in secret, without sympathy and without relief. They were¬†soul¬†sorrows, agony of¬†mind–as well as sharp pains of¬†body. But however multiplied, however severe, however protracted those sorrows–they are past and gone, never, never to return!

The sweetest repose is now enjoyed. The poor¬†tabernacle¬†has been taken down, and is laid in a quiet resting-place until the resurrection morning. The¬†soul¬†is gone to be with Jesus. It has traveled through the rough path of life–and is now in God’s presence, where there is fullness of joy, and pleasures for evermore!

As Christians, we are going to the same place. The¬†graves¬†will soon be ready for our bodies–and the¬†mansions of glory¬†for our souls.¬†We are going home!¬†Home to our Father’s house! Home where our¬†hearts¬†have long been. Home where all our¬†prayers¬†will be answered, and all our best¬†desires¬†will be gratified. “Home, sweet home! There is no place like home!”¬†Especially our home!¬†Aparadise¬†without a tempting serpent! A paradise where all are holy, all are safe, all are happy. Those pure and perpetual joys, which are at God’s right hand, await us! We¬†taste¬†them now and are delighted with a¬†sip–but there we shall soon drink¬†full draughts¬†of eternal glory, eternal joy, and eternal blessedness!

Amidst present toils and trials, dangers and distresses–when wearied, way-worn, and tempted to fret–remember that you will soon be HOME! Think, think, O my soul, of an eternity of enjoyment–when the sufferings of time are ended!¬†

“Now the dwelling of God is with men, and He will live with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away!” Revelation 21:3-4¬†

(Please forward this uplifting post to all of your Christian friends who are going through times of affliction.)

What are you doing with your time?

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What are you doing with your time?

(J.R. Miller)

“Be very careful, then, how you live–not as unwise but as wise, making the most of the time” Ephesians 5:15-16¬†

Our¬†days, as God gives them to us–are like beautiful summer fields.¬†
The hours are like trees with their rich fruit, or vines with their blossoms of purple clusters. 
The minutes are like blooming flowers, or stalks of wheat with their golden grains. 

Oh the endless, blessed possibilities of our¬†days¬†and¬†hours¬†and¬†minutes–as they come to us from God’s hands!¬†

But what did you do with yesterday? How does the little acre of that one day look to you now? 

What are you doing with your time?¬†Every moment God gives you, has in it a possibility of beauty or usefulness–as well as something to be accounted for.¬†

Are you using your time for God?

“Show me, O Lord, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life!” Psalm 39:4¬†

Jeremy Taylor: “God has given to man a short time here upon earth, and yet upon this short time eternity depends!”

Ryle: “No time is so well spent in every day–as that which we spend upon our knees.”

Spurgeon: “Time is short. Eternity is long. It is only reasonable that this short life be lived in the light of eternity!”

“So teach¬†us¬†to number our days–that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” Psalm 90:12¬†

Better to rot in prison!

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Better to rot in prison!

(J.R. Miller, “Practical Lessons from the Story of¬†Joseph“)

“How can I do this great wickedness–and sin against God!” Genesis 39:9

“After hearing his wife’s story, Potiphar was furious! He took Joseph and threw him into the prison!” Genesis 39:19-20

Sometimes it costs very dearly to be true to God. Joseph lay now in a dungeon. But his¬†loss¬†through doing right, was nothing in comparison with what he would have lost–had he done the wickedness to which he was tempted. His prison gloom, deep as it was–was as noonday, compared with what would have been the¬†darkness of his soul¬†under the blight of evil, and the bitterness of remorse. The¬†chains¬†that hung upon him in his dungeon, were but like¬†feathers–in comparison with the¬†heavy chains¬†which would have bound his¬†soul, had he yielded to the temptation. Though in a prison, his feet hurt by the fetters–he was a free man because his¬†conscience¬†was free and his¬†heart¬†was pure!¬†

No fear of consequences should ever drive us to do a wrong thing. 

It is better to suffer any loss, any cost, any sacrifice–than be eaten up by remorse!¬†

Better be hurled down from a high place for doing right–than win worldly honor by doing wrong.¬†

Better lose our right hand–than lose our purity of soul.¬†

Better to rot in prison–than to sin against God!

It was the prayer of a young queen, which she wrote with a diamond point on her castle window,¬†“Keep me¬†pure–make others¬†great.”¬†That is the lesson of Joseph’s victory over temptation: dishonor, loss, dungeon, death–anything before sin!

Prepare to meet the monster!

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Prepare to meet the monster! 

(David Harsha) 

This young lady had been confined to a bed of severe suffering for one year. At last her soul was ripened for glory. The time came that she must die, and her death-bed was a scene of triumph. Christ was very precious to her, and His love was wonderfully manifested to her soul. She often exclaimed, “My Beloved is mine, and I am His.”¬†

The following are among her last words: 

To her distant¬†brother¬†she thus dictated a letter: “Dear brother, I know not whether I shall meet you again on earth; but I hope to meet you in Heaven, where we shall be forever singing the praises of God; where the Lamb, who is in the midst of the throne, shall feed us, and lead us unto living fountains of waters, and where God shall wipe away all tears from our eyes.”¬†

To her¬†father, who said to her, “I fear I must lose you.” She replied, “Your loss will be my gain! I have a building from God, a house, not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.” And again when he said, “I think you will fall asleep in Jesus;” she responded, “It will be a happy change!”¬†

She exclaimed in a transport of joy, “Oh! I would not give up Christ for all the world!”¬†

Her earthly course being nearly finished, she opened her eyes, which were soon to be closed in death, and in the language of strong, unshaken faith, exclaimed with Job, “But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, and that he will stand upon the earth at last. And after my body has decayed, yet in my body I will see God! I will see him for myself. Yes, I will see him with my own eyes. I am overwhelmed at the thought!”¬†

Her faith remained firm unto the end, and her hope and confidence unshaken to the last. Her sky was clear and serene, her mind calm and composed–and thus she fell asleep in Jesus and entered into the joy of her Lord.¬†

A few days before this young lady died, she requested the following lines to be read at her funeral. 

To my young companions:

“My youthful mates, both small and great,¬†
  Stand here, and you shall see, 
  An awful sight, which is a type 
  Of what you soon will be! 

“I used to appear once fresh and fair¬†
  Among the youthful crowd; 
  But now behold me dead and cold, 
  Wrapped in a sable shroud! 

“My cheeks once red, like roses spread,¬†
  My sparkling eyes so gay; 
¬† But now you see how ’tis with me,¬†
  A lifeless lump of clay! 

“When you are dressed in all your best,¬†
¬† In ‘fashion’ so complete,¬†
  You soon must be, as you see me, 
  Wrapped in a shrouding sheet! 

“Ah, youth beware, and do¬†prepare¬†
  To meet the monster
, death! 
  For he may come when you are young, 
  And steal away your breath! 

“When you unto your frolics go,¬†
  Remember what I say; 
  In short time, though in your prime, 
  You may be called away! 

“Now I am gone, I can’t return;¬†
¬† No more of me you’ll see;¬†
  But it is true that all of you, 
  Must shortly follow me! 

“When you unto my grave do go,¬†
  That gloomy place to see, 
  I say to you who stand and view, 
¬† Prepare to follow me!”

What an awful thing it is to die without salvation by Christ, without a saving interest in him; and yet millions live without God, and without hope in the world. And millions more die in the same awful condition, and plunge into a dark and miserable eternity!

“Let me die like the righteous–let my life end like theirs!” Numbers 23:10

The Christian is not a good man

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The Christian is not a good man

(Martyn Lloyd Jones)

The Christian is not a good man. 

He is a vile wretch who has been save by the grace of God!

“You see, at just the right time, when we were still¬†powerless, Christ died for the¬†ungodly.” Romans 5:6¬†

“But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still¬†sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8¬†

“When we were¬†God’s enemies, we were reconciled to Him through the death of His Son” Romans 5:10¬†

“Christ Jesus came into the world to save¬†sinners–of whom I am the¬†worst!” 1 Timothy 1:15¬†

A beloved child–watched over, cared for, supplied and defended!

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A beloved child–watched over, cared for, supplied and defended!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“The Lord takes pleasure in His people!” Psalm 149:4¬†

How comprehensive is the love of Jesus! There is no part of His people’s interests that He does not consider; and there is nothing that concerns their welfare, which is not important to Him. Not merely does He think of you, believer, as an¬†immortal¬†being–but as a¬†mortal¬†being, also. Do not deny it or doubt it: “The very¬†hairs¬†of your head are all numbered.” “The¬†steps¬†of a good man are ordered by the Lord, and he delights in His way.” Believer, rest assured that the heart of Jesus cares about your common affairs.

The breadth of His tender love is such that you may resort to Him in all matters; for as a father pities his children, so does He pity you. Oh, what a heart is His–which comprehends all the diverse and innumerable concerns of all His redeemed people!

Do you think that you can measure the love of Christ? Think of what His love has brought you–justification, adoption, sanctification and eternal life! The riches of His goodness are unsearchable–you shall never be able to¬†count¬†them out or even¬†conceive¬†of them all. Oh, the breadth of the love of Christ! You are no desolate wanderer, but¬†a beloved child–watched over, cared for, supplied and defended¬†by your Lord!

“You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in Your bottle. You have recorded each one in Your book!” Psalm 56:8¬†

They are all gone!

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They are all gone! 

(Charles Spurgeon)

“If you, O Lord, should keep a record of our sins–Lord, who could stand before You?” Psalm 130:3¬†

“I–yes, I alone–will blot out your sins for My own sake, and will never remember them again!” Isaiah 43:25¬†

“You will tread our sins underfoot, and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea!” Micah 7:19¬†

All our transgressions are swept away at once, carried off as by a flood! They are so completely removed from us–that no guilty trace of them remains!¬†They are all gone!¬†

Oh, believers, think of this, for it is no little thing. 
Sins against a holy God, 
sins against His loving Son, 
sins against the Gospel–as well as against the Law,¬†
sins against man–as well as against God,¬†
sins of the body–as well as sins of the mind,¬†
sins as numerous as the sands on the seashore, and as great as the sea itself
–all, all are removed from us–as far as the east is from the west!

All this evil was rolled into one great mass and laid upon Jesus!¬†Having borne it all, He has made an end of it forever. When the Lord forgave us, He forgave us the whole debt. He did not take the bill and say, “I strike out¬†this¬†item, and¬†that¬†item”–but the pen went through it all:¬†Paid in full!¬†

“For as high as the heavens are above the earth–so great is His faithful love toward those who fear Him.
¬†As far as the east is from the west–so far has He removed our transgressions from us!” Psalm 103:11-12

“My sin, oh the bliss of this glorious thought!
 My sin, not in part but the whole,
 Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
¬†Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!”
   
Horatio Spafford

Oh! look before you, and see where it leads!

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Oh! look before you, and see where it leads!

(Samuel Davies, “Saints Saved with Difficulty; and the Certain Perdition of the Wicked”)

“Enter through the¬†narrow¬†gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But¬†small¬†is the gate and¬†narrow¬†the road that leads to life, and only a¬†few¬†find it!” Matthew 7:13-14

This, my friends, and this alone–is the way of salvation. Is this the way in which¬†you¬†are walking? Or is it the smooth, easy downward road to destruction? You may slide along that without exertion or difficulty, like a dead fish floating with the stream; but¬†oh! look before you, and see where it leads!¬†

Most people . . .
  form some easy system of religion,
  from their own vain imaginations,
  suited to their depraved taste,
  indulgent to their sloth and carnality, 
¬† and favorable to their lusts–
and this they call ‘Christianity’!¬†

But this is not the religion of the Bible! This is not the¬†way to life¬†laid out by God in His Word–but it is¬†the smooth downward road to destruction!

One of the best tests of growth in grace

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One of the best tests of growth in grace

(Charles Spurgeon)

“Grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 3:18

“Grow in grace”–not in¬†one¬†grace only, but in¬†all¬†the Christian graces.¬†

Grow in the starting place of grace, faith. Believe the promises more firmly than you have before. Let faith increase in fullness, constancy and simplicity. 

Grow also in love. Ask that your love may become extended, more intense, more practical, influencing every thought, word and deed. 

Grow likewise in humility. Seek to lie very low, and know more of your own nothingness.

As you grow downward in humility, seek also to grow upward–having nearer approaches to God in¬†prayer¬†and more intimate¬†fellowship with Jesus.¬†

To know Him is “life eternal”–and to advance in the knowledge of Him is to increase in happiness. Whoever has sipped this wine will thirst for more; for although Christ satisfies–yet it is such a satisfaction that the appetite is not only satisfied, but invigorated.

If you know the love of Jesus–then will you pant after deeper draughts of His love.¬†
If you do not desire to know Him better–then you do not love Him at all, for love always cries,¬†“Nearer, nearer!”¬†

Seek to know more of Him . . .
  in His divine and human natures,
  in His sin-atoning work,
  in His excruciating death for you,
  in His present glorious intercession,
  and in His future royal coming in glory! 

Remain by the cross, and search the mystery of His wounds!

An increase of love for Jesus, and a more perfect apprehension of His love for us–is¬†one of the best tests of growth in grace.

Not one grain too much!

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Not one grain too much!

(Henry Ward Beecher, 1813-1887)

“Endure suffering as discipline;¬†God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father?” Hebrews 12:7¬†

Affliction comes to us all: 
¬† not to make us sad–but sober;¬†
¬†¬†not to make us sorry–but to make us wise;¬†
¬†¬†not to impoverish us–but to enrich us!

We are always in the¬†furnace–or on the¬†anvil.
By trials, God is shaping us for nobler things.

Troubles are often the tools by which God fashions us for better things!

No physician ever weighed out medicine to his patients with half so much care and exactness, as God weighs out every trial to His children. Not one grain too much, does He ever permit to be put in the scale! 

The troubles and worries of life may be as stumbling blocks in our way–or we may make them stepping-stones to a nobler character and to Heaven.¬†

“Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in His holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” Hebrews 12:10-11¬†

Its tones fall like soothing music on the quivering heart!

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Its tones fall like soothing music on the quivering heart!

(J.R. Miller)

“His disciples came, and took up the body, and buried it–and went and told Jesus.” Matthew 14:12

When one dies in our home, and our hearts are breaking–we should go and tell Jesus. It will do us good to tell Him.

We may not care to tell our trouble to any human friend. Some sorrows are too sacred to be unveiled to any eyes. 

But we need never shrink from telling Jesus. He can understand our grief, for He knows all human pain; not alone as God–but as man, for He experienced all sorrow. He will treat our sorrow, too, with most delicate gentleness.

The very words which others speak to comfort us–often fall with crude impact upon our bruised heart and give fresh pain. The gentlest touch of a human hand, often hurts where it is meant to help. But the¬†voice¬†of Jesus is so gentle that¬†its tones fall like soothing music on the quivering heart, and the¬†hand¬†of Jesus is so skillful that its touch gives healing.

We need never fear to tell Jesus of our sorrow. He is the truest Comforter, and the wisest Healer of hurt hearts.

ūüéĄ The Glorious Incarnation: God With Us

If we could condense all the truths of Christmas into only three words, these would be the words: ‚ÄúGod with us.‚ÄĚ We tend to focus our attention at Christmas on the infancy of Christ. The greater truth of the holiday is His deity. More astonishing than a baby in the manger is the truth that this promised baby is the omnipotent Creator of the heavens and the earth!

John MacArthur

A head full of froth!

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A head full of froth!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“I hate¬†vain thoughts–but I love Your law!” Psalm 119:113

Many of you know more about your¬†magazines¬†and¬†novels–than what God has written in His holy Word!

Many of you will read a¬†novel¬†from the beginning to the end, and what have you got?¬†A head full of froth¬†when you are done! But you cannot read the Bible–that solid, lasting, substantial, and satisfying food goes uneaten,¬†locked up in the cupboard of neglect–while anything that¬†man¬†writes, a best-seller of the day–you greedily devour!

“Turn away my eyes from looking at¬†worthless¬†things!” Psalm 119:37¬†

All that we need drops from His palm!

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All that we need drops from His palm!

(James Smith, “The Evening Sacrifice; Or, A Help to Devotion” 1859)

“The eyes of all look to You–and You give them their food at the proper time. You open your hand, and satisfy the desires of every living thing.” Psalm 145:15-16¬†

All our¬†supplies¬†come from God, therefore our¬†dependence¬†should be on Him, and our¬†expectations¬†from Him. Creatures act towards us in kindness and sympathy–according to His direction.¬†

The eyes of all creation are upon the Lord, and all the tribes of His creatures are fed by His hand. How much more, then, should His children look to Him, seek from Him, and expect to be supplied by Him! 

Whatever God does–He does wisely and seasonably; and whatever He gives–is in season. When our needs are felt, and our cry is heard–then our supply is certain. It is but for God to open His hand–and¬†all that we need drops from His palm!¬†When God’s hand opens–our desires will soon be satisfied. Every temporal mercy, every spiritual gift, and all the supplies needed by our souls–lie in the hand of God for us. He loves for us to fix our eyes on Him, to lift up our voice to Him, and seek every blessing from Him.¬†

Merciful Lord, You have fed us this day. Your loving heart and open hand have supplied all our needs. We gratefully acknowledge Your wondrous goodness, and bless You for Your suitable supplies. And now, O Lord, close up the day with us in mercy–give us a sense of Your forgiving love, and faith in Your protecting care. Help us to cast every care on You, and to fall asleep tonight as on a parent’s bosom. Let Your peace pervade us, and inspire us with strong confidence in Your providential protection.

“Behold, as the eyes of slaves look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of a maid look to the hand of her mistress–so our eyes look to the LORD our God, till He shows us His mercy.” Psalm 123:2

 

The Great Physician and His patients!

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The Great Physician and His patients!

(George Everard, “The Great Physician and His Patients” 1874)

“Those who are well have no need of a¬†Physician, but those who are sick.” Luke 5:31¬†

Our Great Physician possesses the most perfect skill to discern the peculiar needs of each case. He sees the working of all this¬†sinand¬†corruption¬†and¬†hardness¬†of heart–and He can counteract it all by His all-sufficient grace. Before you have spoken a word, when you kneel down and cast yourself upon His mercy–He is prepared to forgive and save. Christ knows beforehand all that you are, and cannot fail to support His tempted or afflicted child.

In Christ there is not only Divine¬†wisdom¬†to discern every case of spiritual disease–but He also has Divine¬†power¬†completely to effect a cure. When He was upon earth, none were sent away unhealed. The blind and the lame, the deaf and the dumb, the palsied and the lepers, those possessed with demons and the dead–all alike were healed immediately by the touch of Jesus. “The whole multitude sought to touch Him–for virtue went out of Him, and healed them ALL.”¬†

Thus completely and surely does Jesus restore all who come to Him. He can . . .
  open the eyes long closed in the night of ignorance, 
¬† strengthen those who have yet had no power to¬†walk¬†in God’s ways,¬†
  unstop the ear long deaf to the sweet voice of the Gospel, 
  teach the prayerless lips to plead with God, 
  remove the paralysis of a careless indifference,
  cleanse souls from the leprosy of debasing lusts,
  cast out the evil spirits of envy, and hatred and unbelief,
  save men from the fever of covetousness, and every evil temper.

His power, when on earth, reached to the very worst cases of disease! The man full of leprosy, and the woman whom other physicians had tried in vain to cure–both came, and others just as hopeless, and all were alike healed. Yes, and I see Jesus day by day saving such as man might reckon¬†beyond the reach of His saving arm.

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30¬†

Do not grieve the Holy Spirit!

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Do not grieve the Holy Spirit!

(Thomas Charles, “The Operations of the Holy Spirit” 1838)

“Do you not know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?” 1 Corinthians 3:16¬†

Do not grieve the Holy Spirit¬†of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” Ephesians 4:30¬†

See how great is the sin of grieving the Spirit.

We grieve Him, when we take little or no notice of His amazing condescension and love–in coming freely and willingly to be our Comforter and Sanctifier.

We grieve Him, when we make no returns of love to Him–by bringing forth in a holy walk and conduct, the fruits of the Spirit.

We grieve Him, when by careless neglect and unwatchfulness, we fall into those habits and courses which He abhors. 

He is grieved, because He loves us and has our happiness much at heart–for to promote our¬†holiness¬†and¬†happiness¬†is the object of His indwelling us. When we put obstructions in His way, and we promote our own misery–how is the Spirit of love grieved!

Let us therefore, above all things, attend to His motions, and beware of a barren and unfruitful profession of religion, and of defiling by secret indulgences–the temple and habitation of the Spirit.¬†

Shall we grieve Him who dwells with us as our Comforter? How unworthy–how base a conduct! Shall we, who have tasted that the Lord is gracious–by our negligence, sin and folly, grieve Him who has come on purpose to comfort us?¬†

Shall we grieve Him, without whom we cannot live, cannot think one good thought, nor breathe one good desire! 

Shall we grieve Him, whose presence in the soul is Heaven, and whose absence is a Hell of corruption, darkness, and misery! 

Is it possible that we should make such base returns for such love, and be such enemies to our own happiness! 

Alas! what is man! In what dust and ashes ought even the best of us to lie down before Him!

Shall we not rather take notice of His love and His kindness, and thankfully receive all our comforts from His hands, and observe His love and grace in every refreshing thought put into our minds? 

Yes, shall we not carefully watch and promote all His strivings and motions within us, and cheerfully comply with them, however self-denying and contrary to flesh and blood?

When He convinces of sin–let us set our hearts mightily against it. When He speaks comfort–let us hear Him as the Lord our Comforter, making known the riches of love and grace to our souls.¬†

An excessive anxiety about the innocent things of this life

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An excessive anxiety about the innocent things of this life

(J.C. Ryle, “The Gospel of Luke” 1858)

“Be on your guard, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and¬†the cares of life–or that day will come on you unexpectedly like a trap!” Luke 21:34-35¬†

The exhortation before us should teach us¬†the great importance of an unworldly heart. The “cares of this life” are placed side by side with carousing and drunkenness.¬†

Excess in eating and drinking, is not the only excess which injures the soul. There is¬†an excessive anxiety about the innocent things of this life–which is just as ruinous to our spiritual prosperity, and just as poisonous to the soul.¬†

Never, never let us forget–that¬†we may make spiritual shipwreck on lawful things–as really and truly as on open vices! Happy is he who has learned to hold the things of this world with a loose hand, and to believe that seeking first the kingdom of God, “all other things shall be added to him!” Matthew 6:33

Sinners in Hell are not the fools they were on earth!

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Sinners in Hell are not the fools they were on earth!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“Then He will say to those on His left: Depart from Me, you who are cursed, into the¬†eternal fire¬†prepared for the devil and his angels!” Matthew 25:41

Sinners in Hell are not the fools they were on earth! 

In Hell, they do not laugh at everlasting burnings. 

In the pit, they do not despise the words, “eternal fire!”¬†

The worm that never dies, when it is gnawing, gnaws out all joke and laughter. 

You may despise and mock God now–but¬†death will change your note!¬†

“Remember, you can laugh your way into Hell–but you can never laugh your way out of Hell!”

“Then they will go away to¬†eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life!” Matthew 25:46

A glance into heavenly bliss!

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A glance into heavenly bliss!

(“Solitude Sweetened” by James Meikle, 1730-1799)

All at once I find myself in an unbounded flood of bliss, a spacious sea of glory–lost in wonder amidst ineffable delights, and transported with the raptures of seraphic harmony! While all His saints rejoice in His excellent glory–what ardor glows in every soul, and what rapture swells in every song! O the wondrous displays of His perfections–the manifestations of His goodness–the outlettings of His love!

Here we received out of His fullness–grace upon grace. and glory upon glory.¬†
Our heavenly possession is worthy of our liberal Giver. We have . . .
  a kingdom which cannot be moved,
  an undefiled inheritance, which does not fade away,
  a city with foundations, whose builder and maker is God,
  garments of glory,
  a crown of righteousness,
  the tree of life to feed upon,
  the fountain of life to drink of, 
  the garden of God to walk in,
  life above the reach of death,
  health secured from sickness, 
  eternal pleasure without pain! 

Our bodies are immortal, 
our souls are immaculate, 
our senses are sanctified, 
our conceptions are spiritualized, 
our faculties are enlarged, and 
our whole soul is glorious! 

Our past bliss is with us in the sweet remembrance, 
our present bliss enchants us in the enjoyment, and
our future bliss is present with us in the full assurance of our eternal felicity. 

Thus we are forever blessed to the highest degree. We are . . .
  above all fear,
  beyond anxiety and doubt,
  and fixed above all change!

Our service is sincere, 
our adorations are ardent, 
our knowledge is profound and satisfying. 

Rapture rushes in at every part!

Our eyes are ravished with seeing the King in His beauty;
our ears are ravished with hearing the songs of the inner temple;
our nostrils are ravished with the fragrance of the Rose of Sharon, the plant of renown; 
our feet are ravished with standing in His holy place; 
our hands are ravished with handling of the word of life; and 
our¬†mouths¬†are ravished¬†with the wine of our Beloved, which goes down sweetly–causing our souls to shout aloud, and our lips to sing and never cease.¬†

Our experience of His fullness, our vision of His perfections and glory–constitute our most exalted bliss, and are the heaven of heavens!

O what torrents of eternal love teem from the glorious throne into our souls! 

O the pleasure that is in His presence! 

O the exuberant rivers of joy that flow at His right hand! 

O love! never to be forgotten–which has brought me safely through so many winding labyrinths and crooked paths, in sight of so many enemies–in spite of . . .¬†
  a tempting devil, 
  the accusations of my sins,
  the rebellion of my lusts, 
  the carnality of my affections, and
¬† the weakness of all my graces–
to dwell at last forever in heavenly bliss!

O eternity! Once the comfort of our longing expectations–now the transport of our enlarged souls! For we are . . .
  forever with the Lord,
  beholding His unclouded face,
  wearing His divine name,
  drinking at the streams of His pleasures,
  eating of His hidden manna,
  sitting beneath the Tree of Life,
  basking under the beams of the Sun of Righteousness,
  singing hallelujahs to Him who loved us, who washed us from our sins in His blood, and brought us here to be with Him forever!

O state of complete happiness and consummate bliss!

We fritter away days, weeks, months!

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We fritter away days, weeks, months!

(J.R. Miller, “The Sacredness of Opportunity“)

“Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.” Ephesians 5:16¬†

Gather up the¬†fragments¬†that are left over. Let nothing be¬†wasted!” John 6:12

“Time is short!” 1 Corinthians 7:29

Time¬†is made up of¬†golden minutes–not one of which we should allow to be¬†wasted!¬†The Master said that for every idle¬†word¬†that men speak–they must give account. This can be no less true of idle¬†minutes¬†or¬†hours.¬†

Most of us live as if we had a thousand years to stay here in this world! We¬†loiter¬†away the golden hours of our little days–as if the days were never to end! We do not see how swiftly the sun is whirling toward his setting, while our work is but half done, our task perhaps scarcely begun!

We fritter away days, weeks, months–not noticing how¬†our¬†one little opportunity of living in this world¬†is being worn off, as the sea eats away a crumbling bank until its last shred is gone! We set¬†slight value¬†on time, forgetting that we have only a hand-breadth of it–and then comes eternity!

Many of us fail to appreciate the value of ‘single days’. “A day is too short a space,” we say, “that it cannot make much difference if one, just one, is¬†wasted–or¬†idled away!” Yet the days are¬†links in a chain, and if one link is broken–the chain is broken. In God’s plan for our life–each little day¬†has its own load of duty.¬†

How these¬†lost days¬†shame us–as they turn their reproachful eyes upon us, out of the irrevocable past!

Many people are¬†wasteful¬†of time. They fail to realize its¬†value. They appear to have time in such abundance–that they dream it can never end. They do not know that¬†a day lost–may mean misfortune or failure for them sometime in the future. They do not know that¬†squandered hours, minutes spent in¬†idleness–may cost them the true success of their life, bringing failure or disaster!¬†

They should not make the mistake of imagining they have so much time–that they can afford to let¬†days¬†or¬†hours¬†or even¬†minutes¬†be wasted. They cannot afford to lose¬†one golden minute¬†of any day. We do not know what momentous issues, affecting all our future–are involved in any quietest hour of any common-place day. There is¬†‘a time for everything’–but the¬†time is short, and when it is gone, and the thing is not done–it never can be done!

What you make of your life–you must make in a few years at the most; for the human span is short–and¬†any day may be your last one!¬†Every day that passes–leaves¬†life’s margin¬†a little less for each of us. Our¬†allotment of time¬†is ever shortening!

There are a great many things it is not worth our while to do. Some of us spend our days in poor trivialities which bless no one, and which will add no lustre to our crown. 

Therefore, waste no opportunity! Squander no moment! There is just time enough for you to live your life well–if you spend every moment of it in earnest, faithful duty. One hour lost–will leave a¬†flaw. A life thus lived in¬†unbroken diligence and faithfulness, will have¬†no regrets¬†when the¬†end¬†comes.

A high esteem of yourself?

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A high esteem of yourself?

(Charles Spurgeon)

A high esteem of yourself? 

You are not a mature Christian, if you have a high esteem of yourself. 

He who¬†boasts in himself¬†is but a babe in Christ–if indeed he is in Christ at all.¬†

Young Christians may think much of themselves. 

Growing Christians think themselves nothing. 

Mature Christians know that they are less than nothing. 

The more holy we are, the more we mourn our infirmities, and the humbler is our estimate of ourselves. 

“Though¬†I am nothing.” 2 Corinthians 12:11
“Although¬†I am less than the least¬†of all¬†God’s people . . .”¬† Ephesians 3:8¬†
“Christ Jesus came into the world to save¬†sinners–of whom¬†I am the worst.” 1 Timothy 1:15¬†
Wonderful was the grace that taught the once proud Pharisee thus to speak! 

Pride may be set down as “the sin” of human nature.

The demon of pride was born with us–and it will not die one hour before us!¬†

We are never so much in danger of being proud–as when we think we are humble.

There is no sin into which the heart of man so easily falls as pride–and yet there is no more vice which is more frequently, more emphatically, and more eloquently condemned in Scripture.¬†

We are all proud. Pride can hide under a beggar’s rags–as well as under a minister’s robes. Pride is a¬†weed¬†that will grow on a dunghill–as well as in a palace garden; but it ought never to be allowed to grow in the heart of a Christian!

No matter how dear you are to God–if pride is harbored in your heart, He will whip it out of you!

Among the wonders in Heaven, shall be these three

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Among the wonders in Heaven, shall be these three

(Charles Spurgeon)

Among the wonders in Heaven, shall be these three:

  The first wonder is that we shall see so many there, whom we did not expect to see. 
 
  The second is that we shall miss so many there, whom we did expect to see. 

¬† But the third wonder will be the greatest wonder of all–to see¬†ourselves¬†there!

        And can it be, that I should gain
¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† An interest in the Savior’s blood?
        Died He for me, who caused His pain?
        For me, who Him to death pursued?

        Amazing love! how can it be
        That Thou, my God, should die for me?
        Amazing love! how can it be
        That Thou, my God, should die for me?

        Tis mercy all, immense and free
        For O my God, it found out me!
        Amazing love! How can it be,
        That Thou, my God, should die for me?

He who believes shall be saved, be his sins ever so many

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He who believes shall be saved, be his sins ever so many

(Charles Spurgeon)

“He who¬†believes¬†in the Son has everlasting life!
¬†He who¬†does not believe¬†the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him!” John 3:36¬†

He who believes shall be saved, be his sins ever so many.
He who does not believe shall be damned, be his sins ever so few.
 
There is no sin which can damn the one who sincerely believes.
There is absolutely nothing which can save the one who does not believe.

“The¬†only¬†way to be saved is by faith in Christ. Apart from faith in Him–no one, anywhere, at any time, in any culture, at any period in history, at any age, is saved.”

We find that they are empty bubbles!

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We find that they are empty bubbles!

(J.C. Ryle)

“Do not love the¬†world¬†or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For everything in the world–the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does–comes not from the Father but from the world!” 1 John 2:15-16¬†

The possession of the whole world and all that it contains, will never make a person happy. Its¬†pleasures¬†are false and deceptive! Its¬†riches,¬†rank, and¬†honors, have no power to satisfy the heart! So long as we have¬†not¬†got them–they glitter, sparkle, and seem desirable. The moment we have them–we find that they are empty bubbles, and cannot make us feel content!¬†

And, worst of all, when we possess this world’s good things to the utmost bound of our desire–we cannot keep them!¬†Deathcomes in and separates us from all our property forever! Naked we came upon earth, and naked we go forth–and of all our possessions, we can carry¬†nothing¬†with us.¬†

Such is the world, which occupies the whole attention of thousands! 

Such is the world, for the sake of which millions are every year destroying their souls!

“This world is¬†fading away, along with everything that people crave!” 1 John 2:17

Morality without Christ

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Morality without Christ

(Charles Spurgeon)

“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:3¬†

You moral and upright people without Christ–you are as surely lost as the despicable reprobate!¬†

You chaste and respectable people without Christ–you will be as surely damned as the vile prostitute who walks the streets at midnight!

“Unless you repent, you will all likewise perish!” Luke 13:3¬†

That very church which the world likes best!

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That very church which the world likes best!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“As God has said: I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be My people.¬†Therefore come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” 2 Corinthians 6:16-18¬†

That very church which the world likes best, is sure to be the church which God abhors most!

“People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud . . . lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God–having a form of godliness but denying its power.¬†Have nothing to do with them!”¬†2 Timothy 3:2-5¬†
 

“We have learned to live with¬†unholiness¬†in our churches, and have come to look upon it as the natural and expected thing. It is scarcely possible in most places to get anyone to attend a church meeting, where the only attraction is God. One can only conclude that God’s professed children are bored with Him, for they must be wooed to church with a stick of striped candy, in the form of religious movies, games and entertainments.” Tozer

This is the greatest sight you will ever see!

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This is the greatest sight you will ever see!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“God made Him who had no sin, to be sin for us–so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Corinthians 5:21

Jesus has borne the penalty of sin on behalf of His people. 

Behold the wonder! 

There He hangs upon the cross! 

This is the greatest sight you will ever see!

Son of God and Son of Man–there He hangs, bearing unutterable pains, the just for the unjust, to bring us to God.¬†

Oh, the glory of that sight! 

The innocent One, punished! 
The Holy One, condemned! 
The ever-blessed One, made a curse! 
The infinitely glorious One, put to a shameful sin-atoning death! 

The worst days I have ever had!

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The worst days I have ever had!

(Charles Spurgeon)

The Lord gets His best soldiers out of the highlands of affliction.

Great hearts can only be made by great troubles. 

The spade of trouble digs the reservoir of comfort deeper, and makes more room for consolation.

The Lord’s mercy often rides to the door of our heart, upon the black horse of affliction!

I bear my witness that the worst days I have ever had, have turned out to be my best days! And when God has seemed most unfriendly to me, He has then been most kind. If there is anything in this world for which I would bless Him more than for anything else, it is for pain and affliction. I am sure that in these things, the richest tenderest love has been manifested to me.

Our Father’s wagons rumble most heavily, when they are bringing us the richest freight of the bullion of His grace.¬†

Love letters from Heaven, are often sent in black-edged envelopes. 

The cloud that is black with horror, is big with mercy. Fear not the storm, it brings healing in its wings! 

When Jesus is with you in the vessel, the tempest only hastens the ship to its desired haven.

Great in mercy!

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Great in mercy!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“For as the heavens are high above the earth–so great is His mercy¬†toward those who fear Him!” Psalm 103:11¬†

His mercy is so great, that it forgives great sins to great sinners after great lengths of time–and then gives great favors and great privileges, and raises us up to great enjoyments in the great Heaven of the great God!

“The LORD is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and¬†great in mercy!” Psalm 145:8¬†

Often with his lips, and always by his life!

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Often with his lips, and always by his life!

(George Everard, “An Ordination Sermon” 1883)

“Be an¬†example¬†to all believers in what you teach, in the way you live, in your love, your¬†faith, and your purity.” 1 Timothy 4:12

A faithful minister must preach often with his lips, and always by his life.

Preach a crucified Savior, out of crucified hearts!

The remedy of all our miseries!

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The remedy of all our miseries!

(Stephen Charnock)

“For there is one God and¬†one mediator between God and men–the man Christ Jesus!” 1 Timothy 2:5¬†

God, apart from Christ, is an angry, offended Sovereign.

Unless we behold God in and through Christ, the only Mediator–the terrors of His Majesty would overwhelm us.

Because of our sins–we dare not approach the Father, except in Christ.
We first fasten our eyes upon Christ, then upon the Father.

If Christ does not bear our guilt and reconcile us unto God, we must surely perish everlastingly! 

Before any man can think . . . 
¬† to stand before the face of God’s justice,
¬† be admitted to the secret chamber of God’s mercy,
¬† or partake of the riches of His grace–
he must look to one the Mediator, Christ Jesus.

Let us look upon a crucified Christ, as the remedy of all our miseries. 
His cross has procured our crown.
His passion has expiated our transgressions. 
His death has disarmed the law.
His blood has washed our sinful souls, spotless. 

His death is . . .
  the destruction of our enemies, 
  the spring of our happiness, and 
  the eternal testimony of divine love!

The most eloquent mouths that ever spoke!

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The most eloquent mouths that ever spoke!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“Behold, I saw a Lamb looking as if it had been slain, standing in the center of the throne!” Revelation 5:6¬†

Why should our exalted Savior appear in Heaven with His wounds? The wounds of Jesus are . . .
  His glories, 
  His jewels,
  His sacred ornaments!

To the eye of the believer, Jesus is more than beautiful because He is “white and ruddy” Song of Solomon 5:10. He is white with innocence, and ruddy with His own blood.

We see Him as the ‘Lily’ of matchless purity–and as the ‘Rose’ encrimsoned with His own blood.

Christ never was so matchless as when He hung on the cross! There we behold all His beauties in perfection.

The wounds of Jesus are far more beautiful than all the splendor and pomp of kings. 

Jesus appears as the slain Lamb who sought our souls and redeemed them by His complete atonement.

His wounds are the trophies of His love and of His victory.

He has redeemed for Himself a great multitude which no one can number–His scars are the memorials of the fight.

If there were not an audible word, those wounds are the mouths which speak of His love! 

The most eloquent mouths that ever spoke, are the wounds of Christ! 

Listen! Listen! 

Every blood-drop says, “Pardon!”
Every wound says, “Life, eternal life!”

“In a loud voice they sang:¬†Worthy is the Lamb who was slain–to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!” Revelation 5:12¬†

I hate buttermilk!

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I hate buttermilk!

One Sunday morning at a small southern church, the new pastor called on one of his older deacons to lead in the opening prayer. The deacon stood up, bowed his head and said, “Lord,¬†I hate buttermilk.” The pastor opened one eye and wondered where this was going.

The deacon continued, “Lord, I hate lard.” Now the pastor was totally perplexed.¬†

The deacon continued, “Lord, I ain’t too crazy about plain flour. But after You mix ’em all together and bake ’em in a hot oven, I just love biscuits. Lord, help us to realize when life gets hard, when things come up that we don’t like, whenever we don’t understand what You are doing–that we need to wait and see what You are making. After You get through mixing and baking, it’ll be something even better than biscuits. Amen.”

“Jesus replied: You do not understand now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” John 13:7

“Help me, O Lord, to make a blessed use of all the¬†disappointments¬†and¬†calamities¬†of life, in such a way that they may unite my heart more closely with You. Cause my disappointments to separate my affections from worldly things, and inspire my soul with more vigor in the pursuit of true happiness. Amen.”¬†Susanna Wesley¬†(1669-1742), mother of John and Charles Wesley and 17 other children.

“We know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28

The door of the Word can only opened with the key of diligence!

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The door of the Word can only opened with the key of diligence!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“Search the Scriptures!” John 5:39

The Greek word here rendered “search” signifies a strict, close, diligent, thorough search–such as men make when they are seeking gold. We must not rest content with having given a superficial reading to a chapter or two, but with the candle of the Spirit, we must deliberately seek out the spiritual essence of the Word. Holy Scripture requires searching–much of it can only be learned by careful study. There is milk for babes, but also meat for strong men.

No man who merely skims the book of God, can profit from it. We must dig and mine, until we obtain the hidden treasure.¬†The¬†door¬†of the Word can only opened with the¬†key¬†of diligence!¬†The Scriptures warrant searching. They are the writings of God–we dare to treat them with levity. He who despises them–despises the God who wrote them. God forbid that any of us should leave our Bibles to become swift witnesses against us in the great day of account. The Word of God will repay searching. Scripture grows upon the student. It is full of wonders!

The Scriptures reveal Jesus:¬†“These very Scriptures speak about Me!”¬†No more powerful motive can be urged upon Bible readers than this: He who finds Jesus finds life, Heaven, all things. Happy is he who, searching his Bible, discovers his Savior!

“My son, if you accept My words and store up My commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding, and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and¬†search for it as for hidden treasure–then you will understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of God.” Proverbs 2:1-5¬†

Painted pageantry to go to Hell in!

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Painted pageantry to go to Hell in!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“You are to give Him the name Jesus, because¬†He will save His people from their sins.” Matthew 1:21¬†

Many people think that, when we preach salvation, we mean salvation from going to Hell. We do mean that, but we mean a great deal more.

We preach¬†salvation from sin.¬†We say that Christ is able to save a man; and we mean by that, that He is able to save him from sin and to make him holy–to make him into a new man.

No person has any right to say, “I am saved,” while he continues in sin as he did before.¬†How can you be saved from sin, while you are living in it?

You will always know whether you are delivered from the guilt and condemnation of sin, by answering this question:¬†“Am I delivered from the love of sin?”

It is faith that saves us–not works. But that faith which saves us, always produces works.

Does the world satisfy you? Then you have your reward and portion in this life. Make much of it–for you shall know no other joy!

If your religion does not make you holy–it will damn you! It is simply¬†painted pageantry to go to Hell in!

If you have¬†lived¬†like the wicked–then you will¬†die¬†like the wicked, and be¬†damned¬†like the wicked!¬†

If you admit a pig into your parlor among your friends

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If you admit a pig into your parlor among your friends

(John Newton’s Letters)

“Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful–but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life!” Revelation 21:27

If we do not exactly know the¬†particulars¬†of what Heaven is–then we know to a certainty what it is¬†not. We are sure that it is not like earth–there are no ale-houses, gambling parlors, or theaters there.

How then could those whose hearts are set upon these things–possibly be happy even in Heaven, where they would be separated forever from all that they love?¬†Heaven must be a Hell¬†to an unhumbled, unsanctified sinner–even if he could be admitted there. The company, the employments, the enjoyments–are of the same kind with what he despised on earth.¬†If you admit a pig into your parlor among your friends–he would find no pleasure there. He would rather be in the sty, or wallowing in the mire in a ditch!¬†

Well, such were some of us–yes, such were¬†all¬†of us once! And you, my dear friends, though you were not¬†vile profligates¬†like me–you were carelessly swimming down the stream of the world, and, when upon the edge of the whirlpool which would have eternally swallowed you up–He snatched you with a strong hand, set your feet upon a rock, established your goings, and has put a new song in your mouth!¬†

“By the grace of God I am what I am!”¬†1 Corinthians 15:10¬†


Give the devil and sin an inch!

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Give the devil and sin an inch!

(Ralph Venning, “The Plague of Plagues!” 1669)

Beware of such sins as the world calls¬†little sins!¬†They say: “What harm is there in an innocent lie?” Alas, what a contradiction this is! Can a lie be innocent? One says, “Oh, it is only a trick of youth!” Yes, but it is such a trick as may cost you going to Hell! Another “deceives his neighbor and says: I am only joking!” Proverbs 26:19. Yes, but he who sins in jest or makes a jest of sin–may be damned in earnest!

Consider that no sin against a great God, can be strictly a little sin–though compared with a greater one, it may be. But however little it is–to account it so, makes it greater.¬†

The¬†nature¬†of the greater sin is in the least sin. A¬†spark¬†of fire, or a¬†drop¬†of poison–have the nature of much more sin.¬†

God has severely punished sins that have been looked upon as¬†little sins, indeed, some of them¬†well-meant sins–as when Uzzah took hold of the Ark when the cart shook (2 Samuel 6:6,7). When men only¬†looked¬†into the Ark–it cost them dearly! “The LORD¬†killed seventy men¬†from Beth-shemesh because they¬†looked¬†into the Ark of the LORD!” (1 Samuel 6:19). Gathering a few sticks on the Sabbath was severely punished! (Numbers 15:32-36).¬†

These seem to be small matters–but in sin, we must not consider so much¬†what¬†is forbidden–as¬†why¬†it is forbidden, and¬†whoforbids it.

Besides, a little sin makes way for a greater sin–just as a little boy-thief entering a house, makes way for a man-thief to enter.¬†

It is hard to sin once and only once–to commit one little sin and only one.¬†Give the devil and sin an inch–and they will take a mile! Vain babbling increases to more ungodliness. A little leak in a ship, may by degrees fill it with water and sink it. The Devil does not much care by what sins we go to Hell, whether small–or great; whether by religious formality–or open immorality.

If a man makes no conscience of little sins, to which the temptations can be only little–then how little conscience is he likely to make of great sins, to which there are greater temptations?¬†

If Judas betrays his Lord for thirty pieces of silver–then what would he not do for more?¬†

Beware then of little sins!


Look at that cold creeping worm!

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Look at that cold creeping worm!

(Thomas Guthrie, 1803-1873)

Look at that cold creeping worm! The playful child shudders from its touch! 

Yet in a few weeks, and with merry laugh and flying feet, that same child over flowery meadow, is hunting an insect that never lights upon the ground–but flitting in painted beauty from flower to flower–drinks nectar from their cups, and sleeps the summer night away in the bosom of their perfumes.

If that is the same¬†boy–this is also the same¬†creature. The change most wonderful!¬†

Yet this is but a dull, earthly emblem of the divine transformation wrought on those who are converted by God!

Fallen though he is, man is capable of undergoing a more wondrous change than the insect when, no longer a worm, no longer crawling on the ground, no longer feeding on garbage–it leaves its shell to spend its happy days in sport, flitting from flower to flower; its food their sweet juices, and its bed their tender leaves.¬†

The spiritual change which we call¬†conversion, is not a mere reform. It is a¬†mighty revolution–a revolution greater than the tomes of secular history.¬†Conversion changes the heart, the habits, and the eternal destiny of an immortal being!

Conversion does not bestow new faculties. Yet our affections, our temperament, our will, and our judgment–partake of this great and holy change. Thus, the¬†understanding¬†is enlightened; the¬†will¬†is renewed; and our whole¬†temperament¬†is sweetened and sanctified by the Spirit of God.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone–the new has come!” 2 Corinthians 5:17


Seeing that we deserve nothing–we should be content with, and thankful for anything!

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Seeing that we deserve nothing–we should be content with, and thankful for anything!

(Ralph Venning, “The Plague of Plagues!” 1669)

It has been every man’s lot to come into and go out of this world naked–to show that he has no right to anything, but lives on the alms of God’s charity and grace. All that we have or hold between our birth and death–is the mere gift of God.¬†

God might choose whether He would allow us anything or not; and when He has given–He may take back again, and none of us has cause to say anything but what Job said: “Naked I came into the world–and naked I shall return. The Lord has¬†given–and the Lord has¬†taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord!” Job 1:21¬†

All that we have, our food and clothing and belongings–are only¬†lent¬†to us. Therefore,¬†seeing that we deserve nothing–we should be¬†content¬†with, and¬†thankful¬†for anything.

“For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.” 1 Timothy 6:7-8


Moral and spiritual parasites!

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Moral and spiritual parasites!

(Frederick Marsh)

There are moral and spiritual parasites which throttle, kill, injure, or retard the growth of the spiritual life!

1. The parasite of¬†sloth¬†will hinder the grace of watchfulness–as it did the five virgins. Matthew 25:5

2. The parasite of¬†worldliness¬†will kill the grace of devotion–as it did in Demas. 2 Timothy 4:10

3. The parasite of¬†pride¬†will devastate the grace of humility–as it did with the Devil. 1 Timothy 3:6

4. The parasite of¬†unbelief¬†will keep down the grace of faith–as is seen in the children of Israel. Hebrews 3:17-19

5. The parasite of¬†self-importance¬†will kill the grace of self-denial–as is stated of Diotrephes. 3 John 9

6. The parasite of¬†avarice¬†will stifle the grace of reality–as is evidenced in Achan. Joshua 7:21

7. The parasite of¬†covetousness¬†will strangle the grace of generosity–as is manifest in Balaam. 2 Peter 2:15


Death–to the righteous and the wicked

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Death–to the righteous and the wicked

(George Lawson, “A Practical Exposition of the Book of Proverbs” 1821)

“The wicked will be cut off from the land–and the unfaithful will be torn from it.”¬†Proverbs 2:22¬†

Must not the righteous leave the earth too? 
Yes! But the earth is a very different thing to the righteous, and to the wicked. 

To the righteous–this world is a place of preparation or Heaven.¬†
To the wicked–this world is all the Heaven they will ever have.¬†

Death is a kind messenger sent to the righteous by their heavenly Father–calling them to the possession of their eternal inheritance!
To the wicked, death is a messenger of wrath–summoning them to the abodes of misery!¬†

Death is the beginning of happiness to God’s people.
Death is the final conclusion of all that the wicked counted their happiness. 

To the righteous–death is a translation to a glorious eternity!¬†
To the wicked–death is everlasting destruction and woe!¬†

“If only they were wise and would understand this–and discern what their¬†end¬†will be!”¬†Deuteronomy 32:29¬†

“So teach us to number our days–that we may gain a heart of wisdom!”¬†Psalm 90:12


For me!

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For me!

(Octavius Winslow)

“The Son of God, who loved¬†me¬†and gave Himself¬†for me!” Galatians 2:20¬†

Is Jesus precious to my heart?

Is He the object of my supreme admiration and delight?

Does He have my warmest affection?

Do I love Jesus above all?

I must light the torch of my affection for Christ–at¬†the altar of Calvary. I must go there, and learn and believe what the love of Jesus is to me–the¬†vastness¬†of that love–the¬†selfsacrifice¬†of that love–how that love of Jesus . . .
  labored for me, 
  and wept for me, 
  and bled for me, 
  and suffered for me, 
  and died for me! 

Can I stand before this love–this love . . .
  so precious, 
  so great, 
  so enduring, 
  so self-consuming, 
¬† so changeless–and know that¬†. . .
    His sin-atoning sacrifice was for me,
    His cross was for me,
    His agony was for me,
    His scorn and insult was for me,
¬†¬†¬† His death was for me–
and feel no sensibility, no emotion, no love to Jesus? Impossible! 

Do not be cast down, then, in vain regrets that your love to Christ is so frigid, so fickle, so dubious. Go and muse upon the reality and the greatness of¬†the Savior’s love to you–and if love can inspire love–while you muse, the fire will burn, and your soul shall be all in flame with love to Jesus!


As the tree falls–so must it lie!

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As the tree falls–so must it lie!

(J. R. Miller, “Devotional Hours with the Bible” 1909)

Let him who does wrong–continue to do wrong; let him who is vile–continue to be vile” Revelation 22:11

The¬†character¬†with which men reach the final judgment–will be their¬†permanent¬†character forever. The man who lives in sin unto the end–is making his own destiny.¬†Habits¬†of sin–make the whole life sinful. It is this that gives such¬†solemnity¬†to life. The¬†seeds¬†of our future eternity–lie in our present.
   
¬†¬† Sow a¬†thought–and you will reap an act;
¬†¬† sow an¬†act–and you will reap a habit;
¬†¬† sow a¬†habit–and you will reap a character;
¬†¬† sow¬†character–and you will reap a destiny!

Everyone goes to his own place–that is, the place for which he is fitted by his life on the earth. He who has always sinned here on earth–will continue to sin forever. Eternal death–is simply eternal sin, along with the punishments and consequences thereof. The punishment of the wicked will not be an arbitrary punishment–but the natural result of their own choices and acts in this life.

¬†¬† As the tree falls–so must it lie;¬†
¬†¬† As the man lives–so must he die!¬†
¬†¬† As a man dies–such must he be;
   All through the ages of eternity!

It makes a great difference, therefore, how we live in this world. There is an false impression in some people’s minds, that they can live in sin all their days, and then by a few tears of penitence and a cry for mercy in a dying hour–can change all the course of their life and spend eternity in Heaven. This verse does not favor such a view. The future life–is but the¬†harvest¬†of this present life.

Men will be judged by their deeds. The New Testament everywhere teaches the same solemn truth. This does not mean that salvation is by works. We are saved by grace–but grace¬†changes¬†the life and makes us holy.

“To¬†die¬†is gain”–only to those who can sincerely say, “To me, to¬†live¬†is Christ!”


Pains, infirmities, loss of sleep, the failure of sight and hearing!

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Pains, infirmities, loss of sleep, the failure of sight and hearing!

(Letters of John Newton)

“Do not cast me away when I am¬†old; do not forsake me when my strength is gone.” Psalm 71:9

I am drawing nearer and nearer to the season which the Psalmist either expected or felt. Many reasons teach¬†the aged believer¬†the need of this prayer. As his¬†graces¬†are still imperfect–so his¬†powers¬†are feelingly upon the decline. It was but little he could do at his best–and now less and less!

He feels other¬†props¬†and¬†comforts¬†dropping off apace. When he was young, he had warm spirits and pleasing prospects; but now, what a change of the¬†friends¬†in which he once delighted! In some he has found¬†inconstancy–they have forsaken and forgotten him; and others have been successively taken away by¬†death. They have fallen like the leaves in autumn–and now he stands almost a naked trunk. If any yet remain, he is expecting to lose them likewise–unless he is first taken from them.

Old age abates, and gradually destroys the relish of such earthly comforts as might be otherwise enjoyed.¬†Pains, infirmities, loss of sleep, the failure of sight and hearing, and all the senses–are harbingers, like Job’s messengers arriving in close succession, to tell him that¬†death¬†is upon his progress, and is not far away!

If youth has no¬†security¬†against death–then old age has no possibility of¬†escaping¬†the¬†grim monster. But though¬†friends¬†fail,¬†cisterns¬†burst,¬†gourds¬†wither,¬†strength¬†declines, and¬†death¬†advances–if God does not forsake me–then all is well.¬†

“Even to your old age and gray hairs–I am He who will¬†sustain¬†you. I have¬†made¬†you and I will¬†carry¬†you; I will¬†sustain¬†you and I will¬†rescue¬†you!” Isaiah 46:4


Flinging gold coins and diamonds into the sea!

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Flinging gold coins and diamonds into the sea!

(J.R. Miller, 1898)

“Be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise–making the most of your time!” Ephesians 5:15-16

If you saw a man standing by the shore, and¬†flinging gold coins and diamonds into the sea–you would say that he was insane. Yet God sees many people continually doing something very like this. Not gold and precious stones, do they this throw away–but minutes, hours, days, weeks, and years of time–possessions which are of greater worth than any gems of earth!

If we knew the¬†intrinsic value of time–we would not allow a moment of it ever to be wasted!¬†

It is said that in the mints, where gold is coined, that the sweepings of the floors are gathered and passed through the fire, and that in the course of a year large amounts of gold are saved from the mere dust of the precious gold which flies from it as it passes through the various processes of minting. 

In the same way, what vast values would be saved if there were some way of gathering up all the little fragments of the days and hours–the¬†golden dust of time, which people let drop amid the wastes!

Then think how much most of us would really add to the length of our life, if we had learned to use every hour and moment. We talk seriously of¬†the brevity of life. We are often heard complaining about the¬†shortness of the days, wishing they had many more hours in them. Probably the majority of people waste one-half of their time, and have made only one-half as much of their life as they might have done–if they had only used their time with wise economy, and had not squandered any of it.

There are many ways of¬†wasting¬†time. Many people waste a great deal of time in little fragments–five minutes here, ten minutes there, half an hour today, and an hour tomorrow. Those who understand the true value of time, and have learned the secret of using it, always have something worth while to fill up all the little interstices. They have a¬†good book¬†to read when they find a few minutes to spare; or on any occasion of delay.¬†

Time is also well spent, in which we get a beautiful thought, an important fact or a suggestion of a lesson into our mind. Or the fragments of time may be filled with little acts of helpfulness or kindness. It is one of the finest secrets of life, to know how to redeem the minutes from waste, and to make them bearers of blessing, of cheer, of encouragement, of good, to others. Then the whole world is sweeter, because of every kindness done or good word spoken. 

Much time is wasted in¬†useless activities–in doing things which are not worth while. There are things which are not regarded as sins–but which are of no value to anyone, and bring no benefit to him who spends his time in doing them.¬†

There is a great deal of reading that is not worth while. You go through book after book, and from all the pages you do not get one enriching thought, one helpful inspiration, or one impulse toward a holier life. All you have at the end of a year of such reading, is only a confused memory of exciting sensations, unwholesome incidents, and unreal experiences. You would better have spent the time in sleep or in sheer idleness, than in going through such worthless books!

There is altogether too much of such reading done. There are good novels, great works of fiction, which teach splendid lessons, which show magnificent character and noble conduct, which inspire their readers to truer, holier living. But there are novels which give unworthy and unwholesome thoughts of life, which leave in the mind of readers a residuum of unholy thoughts, false ideals, the¬†trail of the serpent. Then there are novels which, if they are not positively evil in their spirit and tendency–are inane, senseless, with nothing in them to make any one truer, holier, or sweeter-spirited.

A great deal of the popular reading of our day is but a waste of time, if not worse! If instead of it people would read only that which is worth while–how much richer they would be at the end of their life!

No problem that comes before us is more important than this–what to do with¬†time. In youth, we learn how to live. The habits we form then, will go with us to the end of our days. If we learn then the value of¬†moments, and form the habit of giving every minute something worthy to do–we shall have found a secret of successful living.

“Teach us to number our days aright–that we may gain a heart of wisdom!”¬†Psalm 90:12¬†


The suffering Christian!

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The suffering Christian!

(Francis Bourdillon, “Affliction, Light and Short!” 1864)

“For our¬†light¬†affliction, which is but for a¬†moment–is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; while we do not look at the things which are seen–but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary–but the things which are not seen are eternal!” 2 Corinthians 4:17-18¬†

Few people will call their present affliction¬†light–and few are disposed to call it¬†short. For while it lasts, it seems¬†hard¬†to bear–and a time of suffering generally appears¬†long. Yet the apostle Paul writes thus about his affliction: “Our¬†light¬†affliction, which is but for a¬†moment.”¬†

Paul’s afflictions were not, in themselves,¬†light–few men have gone through more hardships and trials than he did. Nor were they, in themselves,¬†short–for wherever he went he found them; they continued, more or less, to the end of his life.¬†

It was only when he¬†compared¬†his present affliction with the glory that was so soon to follow–that it seemed to him light and short. Then he could say, “Our¬†light¬†affliction, which is but for a¬†moment.”

We must always try to look at our afflictions in this way. If we look at them alone–they will be enough to overwhelm us! But if we think also, and even more, of the eternal¬†rest¬†and¬†happiness¬†and¬†glory¬†which lie ahead of us–then our view of our present afflictions will be greatly changed.¬†

“True,” we shall feel, “true, my sorrows are many; my sickness is sore; my pain is great; long have I lain upon a bed of suffering. Yet before me lies a home of perfect rest, where pain and sickness and sorrow cannot come. My Savior has¬†promised¬†it to me and has gone before to¬†prepare¬†it for me. In a little while, I shall be there!”¬†

With thoughts such as these,¬†the suffering Christian¬†should comfort himself–and thus weigh¬†present affliction¬†against¬†future glory. For what are all things here below, but short? Joys and sorrows, health and sickness, affliction and prosperity–all the things that¬†pain¬†and that¬†please, “the things which are seen”–all these things are but for a time.¬†

Whereas “the things which are not seen are eternal.” What we¬†hope¬†for, what Christ has¬†purchased¬†for us and gone before to¬†prepare¬†for us–that is forever! Our pains and sorrows will soon end–but our pleasures will never end! Our affliction is but for a little while–but our comforts, our Savior’s presence, our Heavenly home, will be ours always!¬†

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away–yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day!” 2 Corinthians 4:16


The sheep do not choose their own pasture!

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The sheep do not choose their own pasture!

(Francis Bourdillon, “Bedside Readings” 1864)

“He makes me to lie down in green pastures.¬†He leads me beside the still waters.”¬†Psalm 23:2¬†

“He makes me lie down in green pastures.”¬†That is, He supplies the needs of our souls. He . . .
  gives us the food of the Word of God, 
  strengthens us with His grace, and
  makes us to find our rest in Him. 

“He leads me beside the still waters.”¬†That is, He . . .
  refreshes us when we are weary, 
  revives our hearts by His promises, 
  cheers us by His presence, 
  gives us His Holy Spirit, and 
  enables us to rejoice in His salvation. 

Amidst all our trials and troubles–He comforts us and gives us fresh hope.¬†

Some may say, “Why should I have trouble at all? Why does the good Shepherd send me anything besides comfort and pleasure? Why am I¬†poor¬†or¬†sad¬†or¬†sick?”¬†

The sheep do not choose their own pasture–the shepherd chooses for them. In the same way, the disciple does not choose his own lot in life–it is¬†appointed¬†for him. His Shepherd knows best what is good for him. The best is not always what is the most pleasant at the moment–but what is most profitable in the end.

Our Shepherd sometimes leads us through what seem to us dry and stony places–but they lead to the Heavenly pastures! And even along the way, He feeds us and comforts us with all a shepherd’s care. Never is our Shepherd nearer to us, than when we are in need or danger.¬†

“My sheep hear My voice, I know them, and they follow Me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish–ever! No one will snatch them out of My hand!” John 10:27-28


Here–put your troubles here!

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Here–put your troubles here!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“Cast your burden on the Lord–and He will sustain you.” Psalm 55:22

Cast your¬†troubles¬†where you have cast your¬†sins. You have cast your¬†sins¬†onto Jesus–cast your¬†troubles¬†there also!

As soon as the trouble comes, quick, the first thing–tell it to your heavenly Father!¬†Remember, that the longer you take telling your trouble to God–the more your peace will be impaired. The longer the frost lasts–the more likely the ponds will be frozen.

Oh! It is¬†a happy way of smoothing sorrow, when we can cast our burden upon the Lord. Oh, you agitated Christians, do not dishonor your religion by always wearing a ‘frown of concern’. Come, cast your burden upon the Lord.

I see you staggering beneath a weight which He would not feel.
What seems a crushing burden to you–would be nothing but a bit of dust to Him!

See! The Almighty bends His shoulders, and He says:¬†Here–put your troubles here!

“Cast all your cares upon Him–because He cares about you!” 1 Peter 5:7


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