Tag Archives: Grace Quotes

We must test all our pleasures and amusements by this rule:

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We must test all our pleasures and amusements by this rule:

(J.R. Miller)

“Lovers of¬†pleasure–rather than lovers of God; having a form of godliness–but denying its power.” 2 Timothy 3:4-5¬†

Is the¬†love of pleasure and amusement¬†growing on you–gaining the power and authority over you?¬†

Is it dulling the keenness of your zest for spiritual pleasures? 

Is it making Bible study, prayer, communion with Christ, and meditation upon holy themes–less sweet enjoyments than they once were?¬†

Is it making your hunger and thirst for righteousness and for God–less intense?¬†

Is it interfering with the comfort and blessing which you used to find in church services, or in Christ’s work?¬†

If so, there is only one thing to do–hurry . . .
  to return to God,
  to abandon the pleasure or amusement which is imperiling your soul, and
  to find in Christ, the joy which the world cannot give, and which never harms any aspect of life. 

We must test all our pleasures and amusements by this rule: Are they helping us to grow into Christ-likeness and spiritual beauty?

“All things are lawful–but not all things are¬†profitable. All things are lawful–but not all things¬†edify.” 1 Corinthians 10:23¬†

If God is our Father

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If God is our Father

(James Smith, “The Children’s Privileges!”)

“You are sons of the living God!” Hosea 1:10

To have God for our Father, is the greatest honor conceivable–and it is an infinite source of comfort and joy!¬†

If God is our FatherHe will love¬†us with a strong and tender love!¬†He may try us and hide His face from us, to correct us for our follies–but He will still love us. Nothing shall separate His child from His love, or sever the bond which unites us to Himself.¬†

If God is our Father–He will bear with our numerous and painful infirmities.¬†Because we are His¬†children–He will put the best construction upon everything. For, “Like as a Father pities his children, so the Lord pities those who love Him. He knows our frame. He remembers that we are dust.” He will accept our imperfect services, because we are but¬†children. He knows our weakness, ignorance, and failings; and He also knows our desire to please Him. And when we can only¬†desire–He accepts the will for the deed.

If God is our Father–He will provide for and take care of usmaking¬†provision¬†for us on earth, while He reserves our¬†portion¬†for Heaven. Will an earthly father leave his child to lack–while he has plenty, and can supply him with the greatest ease? He will not! Neither will our Heavenly Father; but He will supply all our needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus!

If God is our Father–He will also protect us from all evilsspiritual and temporal.¬†
Sin 
shall not have dominion over us, 
Satan 
shall not overcome us, 
the world shall not destroy us
–for God will protect us!
He will keep us by His power, through faith unto salvation.

If God is our Father–He will reveal His mind and will to us for our comfort and salvation. He may hide the mysteries of the kingdom from the wise and prudent–but He will reveal them unto His babes. (Matthew 11:25) He will send the Comforter, even the Spirit of truth, who will guide us into all truth.¬†

If God is our Father–He will give us freedom of access into His presence with confidence–so that we may carry all our sins, sorrows, troubles, and temptations to Him, and lay them at His feet; feeling that we have to do with a Father–one who loves us, pities us, and delights to bless us!

If God is our Father–He will make all things work together for our good.¬†
Good¬†things–such as mercies, blessings, and comforts.¬†
Bad¬†things–such as sickness, poverty, reproach, persecution, bereavements, death.
ALL shall work our good, and issue in our eternal welfare. 

If we are children of God–we are heirs of every promise in His Book, and joint-heirs with Jesus Himself!¬†He will give us a Father’s blessing–a blessing worthy of His greatness, majesty, and glory. And He will keep us safe in every danger, and from every foe; so that we shall never perish–but possess and enjoy eternal life.

‘I will be a Father to you,¬†and you will be My sons and daughters,’¬†says the¬†Lord Almighty.”¬†2 Corinthians 6:18


True Christianity is a fight!

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True Christianity is a fight!

(J.C. Ryle, “Holiness“)

“Fight the good fight of faith!”¬†1 Timothy 6:12

True Christianity! Let us mind that word “true.” There is a vast quantity of religion current in the world which is not true, genuine Christianity. There are thousands of men and women who go to churches and chapels every Sunday and call themselves Christians. They make a “profession” of faith in Christ. Their names are on the baptismal register. They are reckoned Christians while they live. They are married with a Christian marriage service. They mean to be buried as Christians when they die.¬†

But you never see any “fight” about their religion! Of spiritual¬†strife¬†and¬†exertion¬†and¬†conflict¬†and¬†self-denial¬†and¬†watching¬†and¬†warring–they know literally nothing at all. Such Christianity may satisfy¬†man, and those who say anything against it may be thought very hard and uncharitable–but it certainly is not the Christianity of the Bible. It is not the religion which the Lord Jesus founded, and His apostles preached. It is not the religion which produces real holiness.¬†True Christianity is a fight!

The true Christian is called to be a¬†soldier,¬†and must behave as such from the day of his conversion to the day of his death. He is not meant to live a life of pious ease, indolence and security. He must never imagine for a moment, that he can sleep and doze along the way to Heaven, like one traveling in an easy carriage. If he takes his standard of Christianity from the people of this world, he may be content with such vain notions–but he will find no countenance for them in the Word of God. If the Bible is the rule of his faith and practice, he will find his course laid down very plainly in this matter. He must fight!

The principal fight of the Christian is with . . .
  the world,
  the flesh,
  and the devil. 

These are his never-dying foes! These are the three chief enemies against whom he must wage war. Unless he gets the victory over these three, all other victories are useless and vain. If he had a nature like an angel, and were not a fallen creature–the warfare would not be so essential. But with¬†a corrupt heart, a busy devil and an ensnaring world, he must either fight–or be lost.

He must fight the¬†WORLD. The subtle influence of that mighty enemy must be daily resisted–and without a daily battle, it can never be overcome.¬†

The love of the world’s good things,¬†
the fear of the world’s laughter or blame,¬†
the secret desire to keep in with the world, 
the secret wish to do as others in the world do–
all these are spiritual foes which beset the Christian continually on his way to Heaven, and must be conquered. 
“If any man loves the world–the love of the Father is not in him.” 1 John 2:15
“The world is crucified to me–and I unto the world.” Galatians 6:14
“Whoever is born of God, overcomes the world.” 1 John 5:4
“Do not be conformed to this world.” Romans 12:2
“Friendship with the world is enmity with God. Whoever therefore will be a friend of the world, is the enemy of God.” James 4:4

He must fight the FLESH. Even after conversion, he carries within him a nature prone to evil and a heart as weak and unstable as water! That heart will never be free from imperfection in this world, and it is a miserable delusion to expect it.

He must fight the¬†DEVIL. That¬†old enemy of mankind¬†is not dead. Ever since the Fall of Adam and Eve, he has been “going to and fro in the earth, and walking up and down in it,” and striving to compass one great end–the ruin of man’s soul. Never slumbering and never sleeping–he is always going about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour. An¬†unseen¬†enemy, he is always near us, about our path and about our bed, and spying out all our ways! A murderer and a liar from the beginning–he labors night and day to cast us down to Hell. Sometimes by leading into superstition, sometimes by suggesting infidelity, sometimes by one kind of tactics and sometimes by another–he is always carrying on a campaign against our souls. This mighty adversary must be¬†daily resisted¬†if we wish to be saved.

Some may think these statements too strong. You imagine that I am going too far, and laying on the colors too thickly. But the Christian warfare is no light matter! What do the Scriptures say? 
¬† “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life.”¬†
¬† “Endure hardship, as a¬†good soldier¬†of Jesus Christ.”¬†
¬† “Put on the¬†full armor¬†of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes!”¬†
¬† “Strive¬†to enter in at the strait gate.”¬†
¬† “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong!”¬†

Words such as these appear to me as clear, plain and unmistakable. They all teach one and the same great lesson, if we are willing to receive it. That lesson is, that true Christianity is a struggle, a fight and a warfare!

Christ, the example of ministers

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Christ, the example of ministers

(Jonathan Edwards)

It is not only our great duty, but will be our greatest honor, to imitate Christ, and do the work that He has done–and so act as co-workers with Him.¬†

The ministers of Christ should be persons of the same spirit that their Lord was of–the same spirit of humility and lowliness of heart; for the servant is not greater than his Lord.¬†

They should be of the same spirit of heavenly-mindedness, and contempt of the glory, wealth, and pleasures of this world. 

They should be of the same spirit of devotion and fervent love to God. 

They should follow the example of His prayerfulness; of whom we read from time to time of His retiring from the world, away from the noise and applause of the multitudes, into mountains and solitary places, for secret prayer, and holy converse with His Father. 

Ministers should be persons . . .
  of the same quiet, lamb-like spirit that Christ was of; 
¬† of the same spirit of submission to God’s will, and patience under afflictions, and meekness towards men;¬†
  of the same calmness and composure of spirit under reproaches and sufferings from the malignity of evil men;
  of the same spirit of forgiveness of injuries; 
  of the same spirit of charity, of fervent love and extensive benevolence; 
  of the same disposition to pity the miserable, and to weep with those who weep; 
  of the same spirit of . . .
    condescension to the poor and lowly, 
    tenderness and gentleness toward the weak, 
    and great and sincere love to enemies. 

They should also be of the same spirit of zeal, diligence, and self-denial for the glory of God, and advancement for his kingdom, and for the good of mankind; for which things sake Christ went though the greatest labors, and endured the most extreme sufferings. 

And in order to our imitating Christ in the work of the ministry, in any tolerable degree–we should not have our¬†hearts weighed down, and¬†time filled up¬†with worldly affections, cares, and pursuits.

The duties of a minister that have been recommended, are absolutely inconsistent with a mind much taken up with worldly profit, glory, amusements and entertainments.


The breakdown and breakup of “Civilization”

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The breakdown and breakup of “Civilization”

(Arthur Pink, “The Destruction of Dagon” 1943)

The “march of progress”¬†from 1920 onwards, was, if measured by the standards of righteousness and decency, steadily¬†downwards. Those with the least sense of decency were determined to drag the whole generation down into the gutter. An orgy of licentiousness was widely entered into. Night-clubs were multiplied, gambling spread like wild fire, and debauchery abounded on every side. The beaches lowered their bathing restrictions–and¬†modesty¬†became a thing of the past. Youth was allowed to have its fling, unrestrained.¬†

The¬†novels¬†and¬†magazines¬†of the last decade have been filled with obscenities and blasphemies. A friend of ours in the publishing business recently wrote to us, “Today we have shops stacked with books which, had they been published when we were boys–the authors and publishers would have been put in jail!” Censorship has long since been reduced to a farce. The great majority of our children have had their ideas formed by the pictures they saw at the “movies” and the debasing productions of a degenerate press. As a recent writer has said, “The best-sellers of today, are often books whose¬†morals¬†are of the barnyard, whose¬†language¬†is of the sewer and whose¬†ethics¬†are of the pit!”

The breakdown and breakup of “Civilization”¬†appears in such things as the decay of the sanctity of marriage–as evidenced by the multiplication of divorces, and the abandonment of large numbers of babies; juvenile delinquency and immorality among the young; the vandalism which is now so rife; such widespread pilfering–and the flimsy efforts of the authorities to deal with such evils! Thousands of culprits who ought to be sent to prison, are given nominal fines. Law and order is almost reduced to a farce!

No matter in which direction we turn, it is the¬†ugly¬†and the¬†vulgar–which is preferred to the beautiful and refined. What a commentary on our so-called “progress.”

Someone has said, “The¬†popular taste¬†is a good index to the health of society.” Apply that dictum to our own times, and it will quickly appear how the moral health of society has declined.

We¬†do¬†what we do–because we¬†are¬†what we are. There is always a rigid consistency between¬†character¬†and¬†conduct. The thin coating of “civilized” varnish has worn off–and twentieth-century¬†character¬†stands exposed.

Editor’s note:¬†One can only imagine what Mr. Pink would write if he were alive today!

Look unto Jesus in the Scriptures

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Look unto Jesus in the Scriptures

(Theodore Monod, “Looking Unto Jesus!” 1874)
 
“Looking unto Jesus!”¬†Hebrews 12:2¬†
 
Only three words, but in these three words is the whole secret of spiritual life. 
 
Look unto Jesus in the Scriptures, to learn there . . .
  who He is,
  what He has done,
  what He gives,
  what He desires.

Looking unto Jesus in the Scriptures, we find . . .
¬† in His character–our pattern;
¬† in His teachings–our instruction;
¬† in His precepts–our law;
¬† in His promises–our support;
¬† in His person and in His work–a full satisfaction provided for every need of our souls.¬†

“You study the Scriptures thoroughly because you think in them you possess eternal life, and it is these same Scriptures that testify about Me!” John 5:39

Oh! the bitter pain and sorrow,
That a time could ever be, 
When I proudly said to Jesus, 
All¬†for self–and¬†none¬†for Thee!”

Yet He found me; I beheld Him, 
Bleeding on the accursed tree; 
And my wistful heart said faintly, 
Some¬†for self–and¬†some¬†for Thee.”¬†

Day by day His tender mercy, 
Healing, helping, full and free,
Brought me lower, while I whispered, 
Less¬†for self–and¬†more¬†for Thee.”¬†

Higher than the highest heavens, 
Deeper than the deepest sea; 
Lord, Thy love at last has conquered, 
None¬†for self–and¬†all¬†for Thee!”


Should it be according to your mind?

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Should it be according to your mind? 

(James Smith, “Important Questions!” 1858)

Should it be according to¬†your¬†mind?” Job 34:33

We are prone to be fretful, to complain of the dispensations of Divine Providence, and to reflect harshly upon the Lord’s dealings with us.

We want our own way.

We wish to carve for ourselves.

We would be treated as God’s favorites.

We want our ease, and prosperity, and pleasure, consulted in all things. And if this does not appear to be done–if our¬†wills¬†are crossed, if our¬†schemes¬†are frustrated, if our¬†purposes¬†are broken off–then we stumble, think ourselves badly treated, and look for everybody to sympathize with us.

Under these circumstances, God comes to us–as we sit among our broken cisterns, surrounded by our dethroned idols–and puts this question to us: “Should it be according to¬†your¬†mind?”

  Are you wiser than God?

    Are you kinder than God?

      Are you holier than God?

    Are you more just than God?

  Are you better informed than God?

May not your mind be dark, or selfish, or foolish?

Should it then be according to your mind?

Should you¬†reign–or God?

Remember that . . .
  God acts in the highest wisdom,
  His motives are grace and justice,
  and all His purposes are worthy of Himself.

The least the Christian can do is to submit–and to prefer God’s perfect wisdom, ways, and works–to his own. Seeing God has so arranged all events, that all things must work together for the good of His people–they, at least, should daily say, “Father, may¬†Your¬†will be done!”

O my soul, seek grace from God, not only to submit and be resigned to the dispensations of Divine Providence–but to¬†acquiesce¬†in them, and be¬†pleased¬†with the whole of them! Your good is consulted–your best interests are secured. Soon, very soon, it will be seen that infinite wisdom and mercy, grace and goodness, have marked out¬†every step¬†of your road!

“Jesus replied: You do not understand what I am¬†now¬†doing–but someday you will.” John 13:7

There is no sweeter pillow than providence!

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There is no sweeter pillow than providence! 

(Charles Spurgeon, “Israel at the Red Sea”)

How sweet is providence to a child of God, when he can reflect upon it!

He can look out into this world, and say, “However great my troubles, they are not so great as my Father’s power. However difficult may be my circumstances, yet all things are working together for my good.”

He who holds up yonder unpillared arch of the starry heavens–can also support my soul without a single apparent prop.

He who guides the stars in the well-ordered courses, even when they seem to move in hazy dances–surely He can overrule my trials in such a way that out of confusion He will bring order; and from seeming evil, produce lasting good.

He who bridles the storm, and puts the bit in the mouth of the tempest–surely He can restrain my trial, and keep my sorrows in subjection.

I need not fear . . .
  while the lightnings are in His hands,
  and the thunders sleep within His lips;
  while the oceans gurgle from His fist,
  and the clouds are in the hollow of His hands;
  while the rivers are turned by His foot,
  and while He digs the channels of the sea.

Surely, He whose might gives wings to the angels, can furnish a worm with strength. 
Surely, He who guides a cherub, will not be overcome by the trials of a speck like myself.

He who makes the most ponderous orb roll in dignity, and keeps its predestined orbit–can make a little atom like myself move in my proper course, and conduct me as He pleases.

Christian!¬†there is no sweeter pillow than providence!¬†And when providence seems adverse, believe it still, and lay it under your head. For depend upon it–there is comfort in its bosom.

There is hope for you, child of God! The great trouble which is to come in your way in your pilgrimage, is planned by divine love–the same love which shall interpose as your protector.

He does whatever pleases Him!

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He does whatever pleases Him!

(The sermons of Matthew Mead, 1629-1699)

“I know that the LORD is great, that our Lord is greater than all gods. The LORD does whatever pleases Him–in the¬†heavens¬†and on the¬†earth, in the¬†seas¬†and all their depths. He makes¬†clouds¬†rise from the ends of the earth; He sends¬†lightning¬†with the¬†rain¬†and brings out the¬†wind¬†from His storehouses!” Psalm 135:5-7¬†

Every creature is God’s subject, and even the devils themselves are at His beck.¬†

It is so with the most inanimate beings. God bids the¬†winds¬†be silent and the¬†seas¬†be still–and how readily they obey His voice!¬†

If God calls for a¬†famine¬†on a sinning nation–then how suddenly does the earth become iron and the heavens brass!¬†

Flies and lice shall infest thrones and kingdoms, if armed with a commission from Almighty God. “All are Your servants!” Psalm 119:91¬†

What the centurion said of his soldiers and servants–is much more true of God:¬†
“I say to this one,¬†‘Go,’¬†and he goes;
¬†and to another,¬†‘Come,’¬†and he comes;¬†and
¬†to my servant,¬†‘Do this,’¬†and he does it.” Matthew 8:9

God has a power and dominion over all of His creatures, and a sovereign right to dispose of them at His own pleasure. 

Sometimes He governs things according to the course of second causes. Sometimes He governs them in an extraordinary way–above or beyond nature. As when He made, “the¬†sun¬†to stand still in Gibeon, and the¬†moon¬†in the valley of Aijalon.” Joshua 10:12¬†

At the word of God, the sea divides for Israel to pass over on dry land. 

He makes the earth open to swallow up Korah and his companions. 

He shuts the mouth of hungry lions! Daniel 6:22

He commands the fiery furnace not to burn! Daniel 3:25 

The angels, those inhabitants of the glorious world–do His commandments, hearkening to the voice of His word.¬†

All the creatures in Heaven and earth are controlled by His sovereign power! Psalm 135:6 says, “Whatever the Lord pleased, that he did in the Heaven and earth, in the sea and all deep places.”¬†

It is so with all sicknesses, trials, and diseases. Matthew 8:8 

God’s sovereign will and power governs all.

No creature can evade the power of His dominion, for all are at His command! 

“Our God is in Heaven;¬†He does whatever pleases Him!” Psalm 115:3¬†

Suppose I have fallen into some great sin–what then?

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Suppose I have fallen into some great sin–what then?

(Charles Spurgeon)

“Ah!” says one, “Suppose I have fallen into some great sin–what then?

Why then, that is all the more reason why you should cast yourself upon Him. 

Do you think Jesus Christ is only for little sinners? 

Is He a doctor who only heals finger-aches?

Beloved, it is not faith to trust Christ when I have no sin–but it is true faith to trust Him when I am foul, and black, and filthy!

“The blood of Jesus, God’s Son, cleanses us from all sin!” 1 John 1:7¬†

It is but a little sin!

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It is but a little sin!

(Thomas Brooks, “Precious Remedies Against Satan’s Devices!“)

“So that Satan will not outsmart us–for we are familiar with his evil schemes.” 2 Corinthians 2:11

“Ah!” says Satan, “It is but a little sin–a little pride, a little worldliness, a little lust, etc. You may commit it without any danger to your soul. It is but a little one; you may commit it, and yet your soul shall live.”

Consider, that there is great danger, yes, many times most danger–in the smallest sins.¬†
“A little leaven leavens the whole lump!” 1 Corinthians 5:6¬†
If the serpent sneaks in his head–he will draw in his whole body after him.¬†

Greater sins sooner startle the soul, and awaken and rouse up the soul to repentance, than lesser sins do. Little sins often slide into the soul, and breed, and work secretly and indiscernibly in the soul, until they come to be so strong, as to trample upon the soul, and to cut the throat of the soul!

Many are eternally undone by the ‘little sins’, as they call them, that are nourished in their own bosoms.¬†

A little hole in the ship, sinks it. 

A small breach in a dyke, carries away all before it. 

A little stab at the heart, kills a man. 

A little sin, without a great deal of mercy, will damn a man!

The richest pearl of all the promises!

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The richest pearl of all the promises! 

(Octavius Winslow, “Christ is Ever With You!” 1863)

“Lo,¬†I¬†am with you always–even unto the end of the world!” Matthew 28:20¬†

Whose presence is thus promised and pledged? 

It is the presence of Christ! The Christ who is God. “Immanuel, God with us!”

The Christ who . . .
  made all worlds,
  created all beings,
  governs all empires,
  and controls all events! 

The Christ who replenishes . . .
  earth with beauty,
  Heaven with glory,
  eternity with song!

The Christ before whom angels and archangels, principalities and powers bend–and at whose name every knee shall bow, and every tongue confess that He is Lord!

The Christ . . .
  whose glory is divine,
  whose beauty is peerless, 
  whose wealth is boundless,
  whose love is as infinite as His being!

The Christ who . . .
  bore and put away your sins forever,
  removed and forever canceled your curse,
  paid all your great debt to Divine justice, 
  sorrowed for you in the garden,
  suffered and expired in your stead on the cross,
¬† rose from the grave, ascended up to Heaven, lives and intercedes for you, representing your person and presenting your prayers and praises with ineffable acceptance and delight–to His Father and your Father, to His God and your God.¬†

“Lo,¬†I¬†am with you always! Mark! Behold! I the Incarnate God, I who opened my bleeding heart for your redemption on Calvary, I who am your dearest Friend–I am with you always, in all places, and at all times, unto the end of the world!”

O honored saint of God! You have . . .  
  the Divinest in the universe to love you,
  the Mightiest in the universe to shield you,
  the Loveliest in the universe to delight you,
  the Dearest in the universe to soothe, cheer, and gladden you! 
O favored disciple of Jesus–you have such a One ever at your side!¬†

This is the promise of promisesthe richest pearl of all the promises, exceeding in its mightiness and preciousness; while it is the substance, sweetness, and pledge of all the rest!

There is room for you there amid the countless ones who fly to it for consolation, safety, and repose!

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There is room for you there amid the countless ones who fly to it for consolation, safety, and repose! 

(Octavius Winslow)

“This was the one who had¬†reclined on Jesus’ bosom¬†at the supper . . . ” John 21:20

The bosom of Jesus still pillows the head of the weary, loving disciple of the Lord. There is no real rest for the soul, but in Jesus.

Where should the Christ-loved, the Christ-loving disciple lean, with his sins and sorrows, with his weariness and want–but upon the bosom of his Lord? It is the place of repose, of faith, and of love.

There is room for you there amid the countless ones who fly to it for consolation, safety, and repose!¬†Go and lean with your burden, your grief, and your sin–where the beloved disciple reclined; and you shall realize the blessedness of the oneness, confidence, and affection which exist between Jesus and all the disciples whom He loves.¬†

Our thorn!

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Our thorn!

(J. R. Miller, “The Blossoming of Our Thorns” 1905)

“To keep me from getting puffed up, I was¬†given¬†a¬†thorn¬†in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me and keep me from getting proud.” 2 Corinthians 12:7

We do not know how much of Paul’s rich, beautiful life, and his noble work for his Master ‚ÄĒ he owed to¬†his thorn. Just so, we do not know how much we are indebted to our¬†sufferings¬†and¬†sorrows. Our richest lessons ‚ÄĒ are the fruit of pain, of weakness, of sorrow.

There is not one of us who has not his own thorn. With one it may be a bodily infirmity or weakness. With another it is some disfigurement which cannot be removed. It may be some difficulty in circumstances, something which makes it hard to live beautifully. 

The Master told Paul that his thorn was¬†necessary¬†to him ‚ÄĒ to save him from becoming proud. We may think of¬†our thorn, too ‚ÄĒ as something we¬†need. Instead of allowing it to irritate us or to spoil our life ‚ÄĒ its mission is to make us sweet, patient, loving. Many people beseech the Lord to take away their thorn. Yet it may be, that the prayer¬†is¬†not answered,¬†will¬†not be answered,¬†should¬†not be answered. It may be, that the thorn is¬†necessary¬†to keep them humble at God’s feet.

God sends some of our best blessings to us in our thorns, and it will be a sad thing if we thrust them away and miss them.

He will sustain you!

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He will sustain you!

(J.R. Miller)

“Cast your burden upon the Lord ‚ÄĒ and¬†He will¬†sustain¬†you.” Psalm 55:22

The promise is not that the Lord will¬†remove¬†the load we cast upon Him, nor that He will¬†carry¬†it for us ‚ÄĒ but that He will¬†sustain¬†us so that¬†we¬†may carry it.
He does not¬†free¬†us from the duty ‚ÄĒ but He¬†strengthens¬†us for it.
He does not¬†deliver¬†us from the conflict ‚ÄĒ but He enables us to¬†overcome.¬†
He does not withhold or withdraw the trial from us ‚ÄĒ but He helps us in trial to be submissive and victorious, and makes it a blessing to us.¬†
He does not mitigate the hardness or severity of our circumstances, taking away the difficult elements, removing the thorns, making life¬†easy¬†for us ‚ÄĒ but He puts Divine grace into our hearts, so that we can live sweetly in all the hard, adverse circumstances.

“My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9¬†

“I can do all things through Christ who¬†strengthens¬†me!” Philippians 4:13


Cappuccino, Chicken Panini & The Immeasurable Riches Of His Grace

It’s Tuesday morning again and this means…..Going to Roots Coffee Shop to get a Cappuccino and a Chicken Panini. But this time while i was sat, my mind drifted to the grim reaper tattoo on my leg. It’s a constant reminder of the position i was in when i got it, and the position i’m in now….Which is life or death! 

As an unbeliever, i got it to simply look hard, and death was what people seemed to fear the most and they certainly didn’t like talking about it. So i thought this was the coolest thing…..Never knowing that God had already written about this. lol.

Ephesians 2:1-3 English Standard Version 

2 And you were dead in the trespasses and sins 2 in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience‚ÄĒ 3 among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body[a] and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.

But now sitting here sipping my Cappuccino thinking….i still have the tattoo and yet i’m in a totally different position. Born again, a new creation….Not by anything i did, but by the Grace of our Lord Jesus. Unbelievable! 

Ephesians 2:4-10 English Standard Version 

By Grace Through Faith

4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ‚ÄĒby grace you have been saved‚ÄĒ 6 and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

Each time i remember this tattoo on my leg, i remember that death has no sting for the Child of God…..

1 Corinthians 15:55-57 English Standard Version 

55 “O death, where is your victory?
O death, where is your sting?‚ÄĚ

56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

I fail to describe the Joy and Peace this gives me, knowing he has saved me and i can trust in Him. I love the line from the old Hymn: On Christ the solid rock i stand, all other ground is sinking sand.

What Is Love?

What is love?

LOVE IS… being willing to have your life complicated by the needs and struggles of others without impatience or anger.

LOVE IS… actively fighting the temptation to be critical and judgmental toward another while looking for ways to encourage and praise.

LOVE IS… making a daily commitment to resist the needless moments of conflict that come from pointing out and responding to minor offenses.

LOVE IS… being lovingly honest and humbly approachable in times of misunderstanding.

LOVE IS… being more committed to unity and understanding than you are to winning, accusing, or being right.

LOVE IS… a making a daily commitment to admit your sin, weakness, and failure and to resist the temptation to offer an excuse or shift the blame.

LOVE IS… being willing, when confronted by another, to examine your heart rather than rising to your defense or shifting the focus.

LOVE IS… making a daily commitment to grow in love so that the love you offer to another is increasingly selfless, mature, and patient.

LOVE IS… being unwilling to do what is wrong when you have been wronged, but looking for concrete and specific ways to overcome evil with good.

LOVE IS… being a good student of another, looking for their physical, emotional, and spiritual needs so that in some way you can remove the burden, support them as they carry it, or encourage them along the way.

LOVE IS… being willing to invest the time necessary to discuss, examine, and understand the relational problems you face, staying on task until the problem is removed or you have agreed upon a strategy of response.

LOVE IS… being willing to always ask for forgiveness and always being committed to grant forgiveness when it is requested.

LOVE IS… recognizing the high value of trust in a relationship and being faithful to your promises and true to your word.

LOVE IS… speaking kindly and gently, even in moments of disagreement, refusing to attack the other person’s character or assault their intelligence.

LOVE IS… being unwilling to flatter, lie, manipulate, or deceive in any way in order to coerce the other person into giving you what you want or doing something your way.

LOVE IS… the willingness to have less free time, less sleep, and a busier schedule in order to be faithful to what God has called you to be and to do as a spouse, parent, neighbor, etc.

LOVE IS… a commitment to say no to selfish instincts and to do everything that is within your ability to promote real unity, functional understanding, and active love in your relationships.

LOVE IS… staying faithful to your commitment to treat another with appreciation, respect, and grace, even in moments when the other person doesn’t seem deserving or is unwilling to reciprocate.

LOVE IS… the willingness to make regular and costly sacrifices for the sake of a relationship without asking for anything in return or using your sacrifices to place the other person in your debt.

LOVE IS… being unwilling to make any personal decision or choice that would harm a relationship, hurt the other person, or weaken the bond of trust between you.

LOVE IS… refusing to be self-focused or demanding, but instead looking for specific ways to serve, support, and encourage, even when you are busy or tired.

LOVE IS… daily admitting to yourself, the other person, and God that you are unable to be driven by a cruciform love without God’s protecting, providing, forgiving, rescuing, and delivering grace.

[By Paul Tripp.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.¬†Love never fails!” 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

God’s Workmanship!

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“For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10

There is an infinite difference between the materials that men employ to construct and compose their masterpieces ‚ÄĒ and the materials that God uses to create sinners anew in Christ Jesus. Men work with the best of materials to showcase their talents, but God works with the worst ‚ÄĒ to showcase His power, wisdom, and skill.

The most gifted sculptors carve their creations out of the finest pieces of ivory, marble, and jade. The best jewelers seek only the finest gold and silver to form their bracelets and rings ‚ÄĒ they utilize only the most desirable gems to adorn their jewelry; rubies of the highest grade, diamonds of most exquisite clarity, and emeralds of impeccable luster. Da Vinci painted on a clean canvas with fresh paint when he painted the Mona Lisa. Beethoven and Bach chose blank sheets of clean white paper upon which to compose their symphonies.

But God is not like men. His thoughts are not our thoughts, and His ways are not our ways. God employs, not the best, not the finest, not the most appealing of materials when creating His masterpieces ‚ÄĒ but the worst! He uses what no one else wants. He uses the offscouring of humanity ‚ÄĒ to display His handiwork and magnify His grace. God constructs His masterpiece, not from a perfectly shaped piece of ivory ‚ÄĒ but from a deformed, twisted, marred chunk of hard rough stone that has no attraction.

God has purposed to conform His redeemed people into the pristine image of His darling Son. While keeping His eye fixed upon His Son, using the chisel of His grace ‚ÄĒ God sculpts rebel sinners into the likeness of Christ!

God paints, not on a clean white canvas ‚ÄĒ but on a canvas that has been . . .
stained with sin,
spotted with corruption, and
bespattered with the filth of the fall.
As the perfect Painter, God looks to Christ His Model, and, with the brush of omnipotent mercy in His ever steady hand of sovereign power ‚ÄĒ He begins to paint His children, one by one, into the family portrait; tracing every line with divine precision, filling in every grace with unfailing accuracy, accentuating every corner of their character with a whole array of heavenly hues:

blues of faith and surrender,
violets of honesty and godly fear,
greens of tenderness and gratitude,
reds of love and compassion,
yellows of patience and perseverance ‚ÄĒ
painting them all in the similitude of Christ His beloved Son!

God does not compose His symphony on a blank piece of sheet music. Rather, He blots out the discordant notes of sin, rebellion, and impurity ‚ÄĒ and with the permanent ink of immutable grace, He rewrites the sorrowful sonnet of sin, transforming it into the song of salvation, inscribing on our hearts the heavenly notes of free forgiveness, eternal life, and everlasting righteousness through Christ our Savior! With heavenly wisdom and unseen skill, God makes the sad song of human misery ‚ÄĒ into a glorious gospel melody, a tune that sounds best when played on the broken instruments of contrite hearts!

Our God has . . . .

done the unthinkable,
saved the unsavable,
fixed the unfixable!

He has created a masterpiece using a rotting chunk of fallen humanity as His workpiece! What a wonder! By the grace and power of God, “The king’s daughter is all glorious within!”

When God’s work is all done,
when His poem is finished,
when His symphony composed,
and His masterpiece complete ‚ÄĒ
He will present us to Himself holy and without blemish, “a glorious church, having no spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing!”

God’s work of grace in us begins in regeneration and conversion. It continues until the day when our salvation is consummated in resurrection glory, when we will be perfectly conformed to the image of our Lord Jesus Christ!

“For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son!” Romans 8:29

(Frank Hall)

Losses, crosses, disappointments and bereavements.

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“Unto you therefore who believe ‚ÄĒ He is precious!” 1 Peter 2:7

Christ is especially precious to believers ‚ÄĒ when the emptiness of the world is discovered. The soul having tried the world, has found it . . .

false and fickle,
an empty cistern,
a dry well,
a cloud without water,
only vanity and vexation of spirit!

The Christian has experienced that . . .
the world’s pleasures ‚ÄĒ end in pain,
its honors ‚ÄĒ end in disgrace,
and its wealth ‚ÄĒ ends in absolute poverty.

Now turning from the world, to Jesus ‚ÄĒ it finds . . .

solid happiness,
substantial pleasure,
full supplies.

It obtains . . .
a deep and lasting peace which passes all understanding,
unsearchable riches in Christ, and
honors which will never pass away.

O how precious is Jesus, when this world appears to be a valley of tears! Almost everything earthly is at times calculated to . . .

cause sorrow,
fill us with sadness,
and draw forth tears.
Losses, crosses, disappointments and bereavements ‚ÄĒ all conspire to make us sad. Earth is to us a Valley of Achor ‚ÄĒ the place of trouble and sorrow.

Now turning to Jesus, we find a friend who loves at all times, and a brother born for adversity.
He makes up for every loss,
He sanctifies every disappointment,
and He fills for us every relation.

His presence is . . .

like a flowing spring ‚ÄĒ in a dreary desert,
like a cheering fire ‚ÄĒ on a piercing winter’s night,
and like a happy home ‚ÄĒ to the exhausted traveler.

O how precious is Jesus now!

(James Smith, “Christ Precious!” 1861)

It Is Grace

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It is grace at the beginning, and grace at the end.  So that when you and I come to lie upon our death beds,  the one thing that should comfort and help and strengthen us there is the thing that helped us in the beginning.  Not what we have been, not what we have done, but the grace of God in Jesus Christ our Lord.  The Christian life starts with grace, it must continue with grace, it ends with grace.  Grace wondrous grace.  By the grace of God I am what I am.  Yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.

D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones


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