Tag Archives: GraceG

God’s grace is illustrated and magnified in the poverty and trials of believers!

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God’s grace is illustrated and magnified in the poverty and trials of believers!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“But He said to me: ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10¬†

If none of God’s saints were poor and tried, we would not know¬†the consolations of divine grace¬†half so well.¬†

When we find the¬†wanderer¬†who does not have a place to lay his head, who yet can say, “Still I will trust in the Lord”; when we see the¬†pauper¬†starving on bread and water, who still glories in Jesus; when we see the¬†bereaved widow¬†overwhelmed in affliction, and yet relying on Christ–oh what honor it reflects on the Gospel.¬†

God’s grace is illustrated and magnified in the poverty and trials of believers!

Saints bear up under every discouragement, believing that all things work together for their good, and that out of apparent evils a real blessing shall ultimately spring. They know that their God will either work a deliverance for them speedily–or most assuredly support them in the trouble, as long as He is pleased to keep them in it. This perseverance of the saints proves the power of divine grace.

He who would glorify God, must reckon upon meeting with many trials. No man can be illustrious before the Lord, unless his conflicts are many. If then yours is a much-tried path, rejoice in it because you will better show forth the all-sufficient grace of God. As for His failing you, never dream of it–hate the thought. The God who has been sufficient until now, should be trusted to the end.

“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 12:11¬†

CONTENTMENT

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CONTENTMENT

(John Mason’s Spiritual Sayings)
 

**The deeper your self-abhorrence–the easier is self-resignation.¬†

**Those who know they deserve nothing, will be content with anything.


**We must commit our souls to God’s keeping, and submit ourselves to God’s disposing.¬†


**We should obey His revealed will, and then be resigned to His providential will.

 

**Neither contentment nor discontentment arises from the outward condition, but from the inward disposition. 

**If a man is not content in the state he is in–then he will not be content in any state he would be in.
  

“I have learned to be¬†content¬†whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being¬†content¬†in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:11-13

The sword of His pure, infinite and incensed wrath!

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The sword of His pure, infinite and incensed wrath!

(Thomas Brooks, “The Golden Key to Open Hidden Treasures”)

“Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush Him and cause Him to suffer.” Isaiah 53:10¬†

To see God thrust¬†the sword of His pure, infinite and incensed wrath¬†through the very heart of His dearest Son, notwithstanding all His supplications, prayers, tears, and strong cries–is the highest manifestation of the¬†Lord’s hatred and indignation of sin–which ever was, or ever will be!

It is true, God revealed His great hatred against sin . . . 
  by casting the angels down to hell, 
  by turning Adam out of paradise,
  by drowning the old world, and
  by raining hell out of heaven upon Sodom and Gomorrah, 
and by the various and dreadful judgments which He has been a-pouring forth upon the world in all ages. But all this hatred is butan emblem¬†of hatred–compared to that hatred which God manifested against sin, in causing the¬†whole curse¬†to meet upon our crucified Lord!

It is true that God reveals His hatred of sin by those endless, easeless, and remediless torments, which He inflicts upon devils and damned men. But this is¬†no hatred–compared to that hatred against sin, which God revealed when He opened all the floodgates of His envenomed wrath upon His¬†Son–His¬†own¬†Son, His¬†only¬†Son, His Son who always pleased Him.

Suppose there was a father who had but one son–and he was such a son in whom he always delighted, and by whom he had never been provoked. Now suppose you should you see this father inflicting the most intensified pains and punishments, tortures and torments, calamities and miseries upon this, his dearest son. Would you not wonder at the cause of the father’s exercising such amazing, such matchless severity, fury and cruelty upon his only beloved son?

Now cast your eye upon the actings of God the Father towards Jesus Christ–and you will find that He has inflicted more and greater torments upon the Son of His dearest love–than all mortals ever have or could inflict upon others. God made all the penalties and sufferings that were due to us–to fall upon Jesus Christ. God Himself inflicted upon dear Jesus, whatever was requisite to the satisfying of His justice, to the obtaining of pardon, and to the saving of all His elect!

“He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5

Are we Christians–or are we worldlings?

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Are we Christians–or are we worldlings?

(Horatius Bonar, “Self-Denial Christianity”)

“Woe to those who are at ease in Zion!”¬†Amos 6:1

What do we say to . . .
  our self-indulgence,
  our spiritual sloth,
  our love of ease,
  our avoidance of hardship,
  our luxury,
  our pampering of the body,
  our costly feasts,
  our silken couches,
  our brilliant furniture,
  our gay attire,
  our expensive jewelry,
  our idle mirth,
  our voluptuous music,
  our jovial tables, loaded with every variety of rich viands?

Are we Christians–or are we worldlings?

Where is the self-denial of the New Testament days?

Where is the¬†separation from a self-pleasing luxurious world?¬†Where is the¬†cross, the true badge of discipleship, to be seen–except in useless religious ornaments for the body, or worse than useless decorations for the sanctuary?

“Woe to those who are at ease in Zion!”
¬†Is not this the description of multitudes who name the name of Christ? They may not be “living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry.” But even where these are absent, there is ‘high living’–luxury of the table or the wardrobe–in conformity to this present evil world.

“At ease in Zion!”¬†Yes! there is the shrinking . . .
  from hard service;
  from spending and being spent;
  from toil and burden-bearing and conflict;
  from self-sacrifice and noble service;
for the Master’s sake.

There is conformity to the world, instead of conformity to Christ!
There is a laying down of the cross, instead of a taking up of the cross. 
Or there is a lining of the cross with velvet, lest it should gall our shoulders as we carry it! 
Or there is an adorning of the cross, that it may suite the taste and the manners of our refined and intellectual age.

Anything but the bare, rugged and simple cross!

We think that we can make the¬†strait gate¬†wider, and the¬†narrow way¬†broader–so as to be able to walk more comfortably to the heavenly kingdom. We try to prove that modern enlightenment has so refined ‘the world and its pleasures’, that we may safely drink¬†the poisoned cup, and give ourselves up to the inebriation of the siren song.

“At ease in Zion!”¬†Even when the walls of our city are besieged, and the citadel is being stormed!

Instead of grasping our weapons, we lie down upon our couches!

Instead of the armor, we put on the silken robe!

We are cowards, when we should be brave!

We are faint-hearted, when we should be bold!

We are lukewarm, when we should be fervent!

We are cold, when we should be full of zeal!

We¬†compromise¬†and¬†shuffle¬†and¬†make excuses–when we should lift up our voice like a trumpet! We pare down truth, or palliate error, or extenuate sin–in order to placate the world, or suit the spirit of the age, or ‘unify’ the Church.

Learn self-denying Christianity. Not the form or name, but the living thing. 

Let us renounce the lazy, luxurious, self-pleasing, fashionable religion of the present day!

A¬†self-indulgent religion¬†has nothing in common with the¬†cross¬†of the Lord Jesus Christ; or with that cross of ours which He has commanded us to take up and carry after Him–renouncing ease and denying self.

Our time,
our abilities,
our money,
our strength–
are all to be laid upon the altar.

“Woe to those who are at ease in Zion!”
 Amos 6:1

See the hand of God in all the barbarisms and incivilities of men!

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See the hand of God in all the barbarisms and incivilities of men!

(Thomas Watson)

“The Almighty has afflicted me!” Ruth 1:21

“The cup which My Father has given Me, shall I not drink it?” John 18:11

All the injuries and unkind treatments we meet with from others, do not come to us by chance, but are ordained by the all-wise God for our good. 

Many are like the foolish cur that snarls at the¬†stick, never looking to the¬†hand¬†that swung it. If we looked higher than instruments, our hearts would grow meek and calm. Instruments can no more stir until God gives them a commission–than the ax can cut by itself without a hand. David looked beyond Shimei’s rage: “Let him curse, for the Lord has bidden him!” 2 Samuel 16:11¬†

What wisdom for Christians–to¬†see the hand of God in all the barbarisms and incivilities of men!¬†Job eyed God in his affliction, and that meekened his spirit: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD¬†gave¬†and the LORD has¬†taken away;¬†may the name of the LORD be praised!” Job 1:21. He does not say, The¬†Chaldeans¬†have taken away–but “The¬†Lord¬†has taken away.”

Whoever brings an affliction, it is God who sends it.

“God has sovereign right to dispose of us as He pleases. We ought to acquiesce in all that God does with us and to us.” William Carey

“When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider: God has made the one as well as the other!” Ecclesiastes 7:14¬†

“Shall we poor worms give laws to our supreme Lord and Governor, and oblige Him always to bless and favor us, and never to afflict us?” Matthew Poole

“What? Should we accept only good things from the hand of God, and never anything bad?” Job 2:10¬†

Christian joy!

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Christian joy!

Author unknown, 1872)

“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again, Rejoice!” Philippians 4:4¬†

Just so, “sorrowful, yet always rejoicing,” says Paul, speaking of his own experience.¬†

The believer’s joy does not exclude sorrow, but . . .
  attends it,
  sustains under it,
  and raises above it. 

Joy in the Lord should be constant–for He is the same.¬†
There is as much ground for joy in Him in the¬†winter of adversity–as in the¬†summer of prosperity.¬†
He is as good when he¬†chides¬†us–as when He¬†comforts¬†us.¬†
He is as gracious when He lays us low–as when He raises us up.¬†
He is as kind when He takes away–as when He gives.¬†

If our joy springs chiefly from creature good and agreeable circumstances–then it must be fluctuating at the best, and at times it will entirely dry up. But if our chief joy is in God, then the spring of it never fails!

“When all created streams are dried,
¬†His fullness is the same!”

Observe, my soul, that joy in the Lord is not only encouraged–but¬†commanded.¬†
After once giving the admonition, the apostle says, “Again I say, Rejoice.”¬†

The Lord would have His children . . .
  happy in His love, 
  restful under the shelter of His wings, 
  and peaceful in the midst of storms. 

Seek then to know more of Him, live upon His fullness, dwell on His unchanging grace–and so will you be joyful in Him even in the midst of tribulation!

The root upon which our blessings grow

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The root upon which our blessings grow

(Charles Naylor)
  
“Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried” Daniel 12:10

All Christians desire to be¬†purified¬†and¬†made white–but when it comes to being¬†tried, that is a very different thing. They shrink from the very word. Their trials are to them as a nightmare from which they would gladly escape. But trials are a necessary part of God’s process of preparing us for Heaven.¬†

The storms and obstacles in our lives, all work out for out good if we meet them as we should. Through them, our lives are enriched and ennobled and developed. They are blessings to us, though they may seem to be blessings very much disguised.

Life has both its bitter and its sweet. We should not always expect to have the sweet alone. Sometimes circumstances are in our favor, and work for our happiness, peace and contentment. Sometimes we have smooth sailing, and everything goes pleasantly. We are courageous and confident and rejoicing. The sun shines brightly out of a cloudless sky, and every prospect seems fair.

But this¬†smooth sailing¬†does not last forever. Sooner or later, the¬†clouds¬†must come and the storm-winds beat upon us. We must have the rough weather–as well as the pleasant weather; the storm–as well as the calm.¬†

The sunshine and the calm are very needful in life–and they work out a definite purpose.¬†
But the¬†storms¬†and the¬†rain¬†and the¬†wind¬†are likewise needed–and they also fulfill their purpose.¬†

Trials will come–we cannot evade them. We may plan and build up hopes–only to have our air-castles come crashing down around our heads! If we have set our hearts upon these things, we are likely to be very disappointed upon their wreck, and to feel very gloomy over the result.

How greatly we are affected by our trials, depends on whether or not we sweetly submit to them. We should never fret on account of disappointments. If we do, they will only grow more rapidly, both in size and in intensity.

Losses¬†may come to us–our property may be swept away or burned up. If we have our hearts set upon our possessions–then this may touch a tender spot, and it will darken our lives and make us morose and dissatisfied.¬†

Poverty may come and the many difficulties incident thereto. 

Sickness may lay its heavy hand upon us or our loved ones, and try every fiber of our being. Sickness may play upon the chords of pain, a lamentation that incites with exquisite torture! Or it may fire our blood with fever until the sparkle has gone from the eye and the glow of health from the cheek. Or it may bind us helplessly captive in chains. 

Death¬†may come and take those dear by the ties of nature or friendship–and leave sorrow and grief to be our companions.

These things try the soul, but they must be borne. We cannot escape such things, for they are the common heritage of those who dwell in tabernacles of clay. They belong to mortality and to the mutable things of time. How greatly such things may affect us, will depend upon how much we rebel against the circumstances–or how easily we submit to and adapt ourselves to God’s will. God may chasten you sorely, but He will do it for your profit, not for your destruction.

Our trials are¬†the root upon which our blessings grow. These¬†roots¬†may be bitter–but the¬†fruit¬†is sure to be sweet, if we patiently wait for its maturing. Many choice fruits grow on thorny trees, and he who will gather the fruit, may expect to be pricked now and then by the thorns.

We cannot escape trials. The only thing some Christians do by rebelling, is to increase their suffering in the trials and prevent themselves from getting the blessedness out of them. 

We ought to be willing to suffer when it is God’s will for us to suffer, and when He sees it is necessary for us to suffer. Our Master drank the¬†cup of suffering, even though it was bitter. Are we better than He?¬†Shall we refuse to go by the path which led Him to glory?

The difference between the godly and the ungodly

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The difference between the godly and the ungodly

(James Meikle, “The Traveler” June 14, 1758)

There is a wide difference in both principle and practice, between the the godly and the ungodly. 

The affections of the godly are spiritually refined–and their desires are exalted.¬†
The inclinations of the ungodly are corrupt–and their desires are groveling.¬†

Sin has but a tottering standing, and a momentary abode–in the godly.¬†
But sin has fixed its throne, and taken up its eternal residence–in the ungodly.¬†

In the godly, grace and sin struggle for sovereignty. 
In the ungodly, sin domineers and there is no struggle. 

The godly is deeply concerned about world to come. 
The ungodly has no concern about eternal realities. 

The speech of the godly is seasoned with grace. 
The discourse of the ungodly is insipid and vain. 

The godly has his hope fixed on God. 
The ungodly has no fear of God before his eyes. 

The godly use the world without abusing it. 
The ungodly, in using the world, abuse both themselves and it. 

The godly sees God in his daily life, and rejoices in Him with his whole heart. 
The ungodly says in his practice: “There is no God!” and wishes in his heart that there were no God.¬†

The godly adores the Creator above all else. 
The ungodly worships the ‘creature’ more than the Creator.

The godly uses God’s name with profoundest reverence, and departs from iniquity.¬†
The ungodly profanes God’s name with impudence, and adds iniquity to sin.¬†

The godly redeems his time. 
The ungodly trifles away his time. 

The godly studies his duty in obedience to all God’s precepts.¬†
The ungodly shakes himself loose from every command of God. 

The godly forgives his foes. 
The ungodly lays a snare for his foes. 

The godly commits it to God to avenge wrongs done to him. 
The ungodly, fiery and tumultuous–seeks revenge.¬†

The godly loves purity in all things. 
The ungodly wallows in impurity. 

The godly is content with his condition. 
The ungodly covets all the day long. 

The godly is pure in heart. 
The heart of the ungodly is like a cage full of unclean birds. 

The godly walks at liberty in the ways of God. 
The ungodly is the servant and slave of sin. 

The Holy Spirit rules in the heart of the godly. 
Satan rules in the heart of the ungodly. 

The godly has his citizenship in Heaven. 
The ungodly has his citizenship in Hell. 

As there is such a wide difference in their¬†principles¬†and¬†practices–so also, in their¬†eternal destinies.¬†
God is faithful–He has promised felicity to the pious, and threatened vengeance to the wicked.¬†
“The wicked is thrust out in his wickedness; but the righteous has hope in his death.” Proverbs 14:32

The godly are under the blessing of God’s love.¬†
The ungodly are under the curse of God’s justice.¬†

The godly with joy, draw water out of the wells of salvation. 
The ungodly shall drink of the wrath of the Almighty. 

To the godly, pertain all the exceeding great and precious promises. 
To the ungodly, pertain all the threatenings of God. 

Heaven shall be the palace of the godly! 
Hell shall be the prison of the ungodly! 

While the godly shall dwell through eternity with God, 
the ungodly shall be driven away into everlasting darkness! 

Thus, the righteous and wicked are separated in their life, and divided in their death. They are divided . . .
  in their principles,
  in their practices, 
  in their choices,
  in their joys, 
  in their thoughts, 
  in their company,
  in their speech,
  in their fears,
  in their expectations, 
  in their death, and
  through eternity itself!

The awesome, holy, glorious beauty of Christ!

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The awesome, holy, glorious beauty of Christ!

(Charles Spurgeon)

Come here gracious souls, and behold the Man in the garden of Gethsemane. 

Behold His heart so brimming with love that He cannot hold it in–so full of sorrow that it must find a vent.¬†

Behold the Man as they drive the nails into His hands and feet. 

Look up and see the sorrowful ravishing image of your suffering Lord. 

If we would live right, it must be by the contemplation of His death. 

If we would rise to dignity, it must be by considering His humiliation and His sorrow.

The sight of Christ’s loveliness, and that alone–shows the soul its own ugliness.

The sense of the awesome, holy, glorious beauty of Christ kills pride and humbles the soul.

“Yes, He is altogether lovely! This is my Beloved, and this is my Friend!” Song of Solomon 5:16

I have just been informed of the loss of your dear wife

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I have just been informed of the loss of your dear wife

(Letters of John Berridge)

Dear friend,
I have just been informed of the loss of your dear wife. She was mortal–but she has now become immortal! Should this cause you to grieve immoderately?¬†O that I was where she is now!

“Safe landed on that peaceful shore,¬†
¬†Where pilgrims meet to part no more.”¬†

She was once a mourning sinner in the wilderness–but is now a glorified saint in Zion! The Lord has become her “everlasting light, and the days of her mourning are ended!” She was once afflicted with bodily pains and weakness, encompassed with family cares, and harassed with a crowd of anxious, needless fears. She is now arrived at her Father’s house! Jesus has wiped away all tears from her eyes, and freed her in a moment from pain, and care, and fear, and want! Shall this make you sorrow, as those who have no hope?

You have not left your wife–she has only left you for a little moment. She has left her husband on earth–to dwell with her glorious Father in Heaven. She expects your arrival there soon, to join her¬†Hallelujahs¬†for redeeming love.

And are you still weeping? Weeping because your wife can weep no more; weeping because she is happy–eternally, gloriously happy? Are you weeping because she is joined to the blessed assembly where all are kings and priests–weeping, because she is where you would be, and long to be eternally?¬†

The Lord Jesus has called her home to His kingdom, to draw your soul more ardently thither! He has broken up a¬†cistern–to bring you nearer, and keep you closer to the overflowing¬†fountain¬†of all felicity!

“Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst.
 The sun will not beat upon them, nor any scorching heat.
 For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their Shepherd;
 He will lead them to springs of living water.
¬†And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes!” Revelation 7:16-17¬†

Pilfering of another’s time

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Pilfering of another’s time

(Hannah More)

“Redeeming the time.”¬†Ephesians 5:16

Christians should especially be on their guard against a spirit of idleness, and a slovenly habitual wasting of time. We must guard against a habitual frivolousness at home; and an abundance of unprofitable small-talk, idle reading, inane drowsiness, and a dull frittering away of time.

We must seriously consider: what a large portion of life we have unwisely squandered; what days and nights we have wasted, if not sinfully–yet selfishly; if not loaded with evil–yet destitute of good. In the day of judgment, the thin disguise which our treacherous heart now casts over indolence and sloth, will then be torn off.

We are guilty of the strange inconsistency of being most wasteful of what we best love–and of throwing away what we most fear to lose–that TIME of which life is made up. It is not so much a¬†lack¬†of time–as a¬†wasting¬†of our time–which prevents life from answering all the ends for which God has given it to us. Few things make us so useful in the world, as the prudent use of our precious time.¬†

We should not only be careful not to waste¬†our own¬†time–but that¬†others¬†do not rob us of it! The “stealing of our purse” is a serious wrong to us. But the “stealing of our time” should grieve us even more!¬†Pilfering of another’s time¬†is a felony for which no restitution can be made–for time is not only invaluable, but irrecoverable!

Every particle of time is valuable. No day can be insignificant–when¬†every¬†day is to be¬†accounted¬†for. Each one possesses weight and importance. What a scene will open upon us, when, from our eternal state–we shall look back on the use we have made of¬†time–when we shall take a clear retrospect of all we¬†have¬†done,¬†and all we¬†ought¬†to have done!

“Almighty God, I adore Your infinite patience, which has not cut me off in the midst of my follies. Let me no longer abuse that precious treasure,¬†time. Let me bid adieu to all those vain amusements, those trifling entertainments and sinful diversions–which have robbed me of many valuable hours. Let me no longer waste my time in ease and pleasure, in unprofitable studies and conversation; but grant, that by moderation and temperance in my enjoyments, I may be able to give a good account of it in the day of judgment, and be accepted in and through the merits of Jesus Christ, my only mediator and advocate. Amen.”

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

Upon that short time, eternity depends!

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Upon that short time, eternity depends!

(Jeremy Taylor)

“You sweep men away in the sleep of death; they are like the new grass of the morning–though in the morning it springs up new, by evening it is dry and withered.” Psalm 90:5-6¬†

“The length of our days is seventy years–or eighty, if we have the strength; yet their span is but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass, and we fly away.” Psalm 90:10¬†

God has given to man a short time here on earth–and yet¬†upon that short time, eternity depends!

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

Our true, abiding home!

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Our true, abiding home!

(David Harsha, “The Savior’s Ascension”)¬†

Heaven is now our true, abiding home. 

While on earth we are strangers and pilgrims, far from our final rest. And while such is our condition here, should we not often think of our heavenly home? Should not Heaven attract us more and more as we journey through life? 

Shall we still cleave to earth, since Christ has obtained eternal salvation for us, and passed into the heavens to prepare a way for our entrance into those unending joys in the presence of God? 

Oh, let our best affections be placed on those spiritual and divine things above. 

Let the noblest aspirations of our minds be after a more intimate knowledge of Jesus. 

Let us look beyond this valley of tears and keep our eyes fixed on that better country . . .
  where the Savior ever reigns in glorious majesty;
  where the fountains of bliss ever flow;
  where the tree of life ever spreads its delightful shade, and yields its immortal fruits; 
  where all is unending joy, and love, and peace and felicity! 

Let our hearts be more and more disentangled from the cares and temptations of the present life.
Let us live in the world as those who are not of it; as those whose treasure is in Heaven, and whose hearts are there also. 

The nearer a Christian comes to Heaven, the less he loves or esteems this present world. 

May our affections rise heavenward, endeavoring to bring the realities of future, eternal things more vividly before our minds, and to realize our interest in them. 

O my soul, rise above these earthly scenes; and, on the wings of faith, soar to the realms of the blessed, where Jesus is enthroned in unspeakable glory–reigning as my life, my hope, and my treasure!¬†

“Blessed Jesus, we beseech You to show us Your glory, and to raise our hearts, our hopes, and our desires, to that blessed world to which You have ascended. O may our souls be daily rising, in holy thought, towards our home where the ransomed of the Lord shall forever obtain joy and gladness. May our thoughts become heavenly, and our hearts be attuned to those songs with which the arches of Heaven shall resound to all eternity! O my Savior, wean my heart from earth, and enable me to place my affection on things above!”

Idiots catching flies!

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Idiots catching flies!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless!” Ecclesiastes 1:2¬†

Most people are not seeking to escape from the wrath to come–they are busy in worldly things while Hell is near them. They are like¬†idiots catching flies¬†on board a ship which is in the very act of sinking! We see them busy adorning their bodies, when their soul is in ruin. They are like a man painting the front door, when the house is in flames!¬†

Men are in a restless pursuit after satisfaction in earthly things. 
They will hunt the phantom of wealth, 
they will travel the pathways of fame, 
they will dig into the mines of knowledge, 
they will exhaust themselves in the deceitful delights of sin.
Finding them all to be vanity and emptiness, they will become very perplexed and disappointed. But they still continue their fruitless search. Though wearied, they still stagger forward under the influence of spiritual madness, and though there is no result to be reached except that of everlasting disappointment–yet they press forward with much ardor.¬†

Living for¬†today¬†is enough for them–that they are still alive, that they possess present comforts and present enjoyments–this contents the many.¬†

As for the¬†future, they say, “Let it take care of itself.”¬†

As for eternity, they leave others to care for its realities; the present life is enough for them. 

Their motto is, “Let us feast and drink, for tomorrow we die!”

They have no forethought for their eternal state–the present hour absorbs them.¬†

Carnal minds pursue earth’s vanities with all their might; and when they are wearied in their pursuit they but change their direction, and continue the idle chase. They turn to another and another of earth’s broken cisterns, hoping to find water where not a drop was ever discovered yet!¬†

“Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.” Ecclesiastes 12:13-14

It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God!

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It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God!

(Matthew Mead, “Falling into the Hands of the Living God!” 1629-1699)

“It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God!”
 Hebrews 10:31 

It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God, because, as He is the¬†all-knowing¬†and¬†Almighty¬†God–so He is the¬†just¬†and¬†righteous¬†God; and will be so forever, for He is the¬†living¬†God. His¬†righteousness¬†and¬†justice¬†are everlasting–and this makes Hell so dreadful.

As it is the great comfort of believers to have such a Mediator and Surety, such a high priest to live forever to make intercession for them–so this is the great misery of lost sinners: to fall into the hands of that God, who ever lives to avenge Himself on their unbelief and rebellion.¬†It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God¬†. . .
  who knows all their sins, 
¬† who is so¬†holy–that He¬†must¬†punish them,¬†
¬† who is so¬†powerful–that He¬†can¬†punish them,¬†
¬† who is so¬†just–that He¬†does¬†punish all impenitent sinners forever!

Christ takes the garbage!

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Christ takes the garbage!

(Charles Spurgeon, “The Meek and Lowly One”)

Jewelers can only prepare and polish the choicest diamonds. 
But Jesus Christ polishes a common pebble, and makes a jewel of it!

Jewelers make their precious treasures, out of precious materials.
Christ makes His precious things, out of dross!

He always begins with bad material. Christ takes . . .
  the despicable,
  the vilest,
  the scum,
  the off-scouring,
  the filth,
  the garbage of the world,
and out of such stuff and matter as that, He builds up a holy temple, and gathers to Himself trophies for His honor and praise!

“Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders¬†nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
And that is what some of you were!¬†But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” 1 Corinthians 6:9-11

The way to escape from the power of sin!

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The way to escape from the power of sin!

(Charles Spurgeon, “The Way” #942)¬†

The great object of a penitent soul is to get away from the tyranny and slavery of evil habits and of corrupt desires. 

The saints in glory overcame through the blood of the Lamb–and there is no other way of overcoming. The precious blood of atonement wherever sprinkled, kills sin; and he who lives in the full belief of it will be purified from sinful habits.¬†

It is living under a sense of divine love as manifest in Christ; it is living with the full conviction of pardon through the blood, which brings to us freedom from the reigning power of sin. 

There is no way to get the likeness of Christ, except by learning of His love. You imitate Christ, and so become like Him. You commune with Christ–and as you talk with Him, His character sacredly operates upon yourself, and you are changed from glory to glory, as by the image of the Lord.¬†

Christ is¬†the way to escape from the power of sin!¬†The moment we forget Christ, and then seek after personal sanctification–we are trying to get to our journey’s end by declining to tread the road to it.¬†

It is impossible to grow in grace, except by abiding evermore at the foot of the cross.

In a few years

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In a few years

(Thomas Chalmers, 1780-1847)

“For we were born only yesterday and know nothing, and our days on earth are but a¬†shadow.” Job 8:9¬†

“He springs up like a¬†flower¬†and withers away; like a fleeting¬†shadow, he does not endure.” Job 14:2¬†

“Only a few years will pass before I go on the journey of no return!” Job 16:22¬†

“My days are like the evening¬†shadow; I wither away like¬†grass.” Psalm 102:11¬†

“Man is like a¬†breath; his days are like a fleeting¬†shadow.” Psalm 144:4¬†

How transient is human life–yet no one lays it to heart. With the magnificence of eternity before us–let¬†fleeting¬†time, with all its fluctuations, dwindle into its own littleness.

In a few years our heads will be laid in the cold grave, and the green turf will cover us. The children who come after us will tread upon our graves.

They will weep for us a few days.

They will talk of us a few months.

They will remember us a few years.

Then our memory shall disappear from the face of the earth, and not a tongue shall be found to recall it!

The character with which we sink into the grave at death–is the very character with which we shall reappear at the final judgment!

“O God, impress upon me¬†the value of time–and give regulation to all my thoughts and to all my actions. O God, help me to live for Your glory. As the years roll over me, may I withdraw my affections from time, and feel that in moving through the world, I am moving toward eternity!”

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

The principle of iniquity is embedded in the human race

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The principle of iniquity is embedded in the human race

(John MacArthur)

The Bible is absolutely crystal clear that all children are sinners from conception…all children.¬†The¬†principle of iniquity¬†is embedded in the human race. Children are born morally corrupt. They are born with an irresistible bent toward evil. And any notion that children are born morally neutral and free from a predisposition to sin is absolutely contrary to Scripture.

All humans are born in sin. If infants were not sinful, if they were not morally corrupt, then they wouldn’t die. If they were born innocent or pure or morally neutral there would be no basis for their death. The very fact that they die indicates that the disease of sin is there in them because sin is the killer. It is in their inherited sin nature that the seeds of death are planted.

   ~  ~  ~  ~

“The LORD saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time.” Genesis 6:5¬†

” . . . every inclination of his heart is evil from childhood.” Genesis 8:21¬†

“The LORD looks down from Heaven on the sons of men to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God. All have turned aside, they have together become corrupt; there is no one who does good,¬†not even one!”¬†Psalm 14:2-3

“Surely I was¬†sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me!” Psalm 51:5¬†

“Even from¬†birth¬†the wicked go astray; from the¬†womb¬†they are wayward and speak lies.” Psalm 58:3¬†

“There is not a righteous man on earth who does what is right and never sins.” Ecclesiastes 7:20¬†

“The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked!” Jeremiah 17:9¬†

“All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good,¬†not even one!”¬†Romans 3:12

“Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were¬†by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.” Ephesians 2:3¬†


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