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Divine Sugar Sticks for December 2001

Need a quick spiritual energy boost? Here's just what you need ... Divine Sugar Sticks. “Taste and see that the Lord is good.”

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Saturday, December 1, 2001


The Bible has a great deal to say about diligence, and of profound blessings associated with it, which is evident from the following exhortations and examples:

“The hand of the diligent maketh rich,” Prov 10:4.
“The hand of the diligent shall bear rule,” Prov 12:24.
“The substance of a diligent man is precious,” Prov 12:27.
“The soul of a diligent man shall be made fat,” Prov 13:4, 11, 14:23.
“Be diligent that ye may be found of Him in peace,” 2 Pet 3:14.
“Giving all diligence ... give diligence,” 2 Pet 1:5, 10.

A study of these passages shows that whether our business is spiritual or secular, or both, we should be found putting our very best in whatever our hands find to do. A diligence inspired of God enables us to achieve our best.

“Seest thou a man diligent in business, he shall stand before kings,” Prov 22:29.


“Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might,” Ecc 9:10.
“The thoughts of a diligent man tend only to plenteousness,” Prov 21:5.
“In every work that he began in the service of the house of God, he prospered,” 2 Chr 31:21.
“Be strong and work, for I am with you saith the Lord of hosts,” Haggai 2:4.
“Not slothful in business,” Rom 12:11, 1 Thes 4:11.

A Danish proverb says, “Diligence makes an expert workman.”

Work and despair not, give thy mite,
Nor care how small it be.
God is with all that serve the right,
The holy, true, and free.

“That which ordinary men are fit for, I am qualified in, and the best of me is diligence,” King Lear.

The Opposite to Diligence is Not Forgotten in the Bible

Indolence, laziness, and slothfulness, with their promises of impoverishment and sorrow, are not forgotten.

“Drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags,” Prov 22:21.
“The slothful man shall be under tribute,” Prov 12:24, 27.
“Slothfulness casteth into a deep sleep,” Prov 19:15, Ecc 10:18.
“If a man would not work, neither shall he eat,” 2 Thes 3:10.
“The way of a slothful man is as an hedge of thorns,” Prov 15:19, 18:9.

Scripture also takes cognizance of the fact that ulterior motives can inspire diligence. There can be no true industry apart from the fear of the Lord. Avarice is the spur of industry.

Diligence Without the Fear of the Lord

“I will pull down my barns, and build greater. I will say to my soul, soul thou hast much goods laid up for many years. Take thine ease. Take eat, drink, and be merry,” Luke 12:16-32.

The Lord Jesus Christ described one who was most industrious, laboring most diligently at his work, but who was yet destitute of any fear of God. He thought only of amassing greater wealth. Because the rich farmer allowed himself to work industriously merely to lay up more riches for himself and failed to be rich in the Lord, the very night of his boast was the night of his sudden death.

If, through our diligence we are blessed with an increase of goods, we must not forget the Blesser’s share of glory and gain.

God-Given Provision of Defense

God’s coverage and protection of His own is described for us in so many interesting ways. It would seem as if He ransacks the range of suitable metaphors to reveal His ability and willingness to shelter and preserve those who are covered with His wings.

Scores of Promises are connected with our Lord, such as:

Refuge, High Tower, Fortress, Hiding Place, Rock, Covert, Eagle’s Wings, etc.

It would take more space than you can hold on your computer to fully quote all the passages dealing with these most profitable metaphors. So, a few selected samples must suffice to convince us that we have in the Lord Jesus Christ, One whose omnipotence, omnipresence, and omniscience makes possible for us the most perfect protection for the weakest of all believers.

Make each Promise of Divine preservation your own and include them in your prayers.

We rest upon Thy Promise Lord,
Thy Word Thou will not break.
Thou never failest and we know,
Thine own will never forsake.
Lord, keep us looking, trusting Thee,
Our helplessness our only plea.

“He is a Rock ... my Defense ... I shall not be moved,” Psa 62:6, 89:18.

Our Divine Defense

“I, saith the Lord, will be unto her a wall of fire round about,” Zech 2:5.
“In the secret of His tabernacle shall He hide me,” Psa 27:5-6, 61:4.
“Abide under the shadow of the Almighty,” Psa 91:1, 15:1, Deut 33:12.
“He shall cover thee with His feathers ... wings ... shield,” Psa 91:4, 17:8.
“Thou hast covered my head in the day of battle,” Psa 140:7, 85:2.
“He is the Rock. His work is perfect,” Deut 33:3-4, Psa 62:5-7.
“As birds flying, so will the Lord of hosts defend,” Isa 31:5, Psa 91:3-6.
“They that wait upon the Lord shall mount up as eagles,” Isa 40:31.
“The Lord shall cover him all the day long,” Deut 33:12, Prov 1:33.
“The Lord is round about His people from henceforth and for ever,” Psa 125:2, 32:10.
“The Lord is a Refuge for the oppressed, a Refuge in times of trouble,” Psa 9:9, Prov 14:26.
“Fear not, I am thy Shield,” Gen 15:1, Psa 3:3, Rom 8:31.

With this array of wonderful Promises before us, how can we possibly be afraid of what the present or the future may hold for us?

With the Lord as our Canopy, we are safe, and we should be serene and satisfied. Because He is between us and our foes and trials, we can rest in the assurance that “not a shaft can hit till He sees fit,” 1 Pet 3:13, Prov 3:24, Isa 43:2.

I know these are a lot of Promises, but can you get too much of a good thing, a Grace thing? Too much Grace?

Thought for the Day in Light of a Terrorist Attack

“Because thou servest not the Lord thy God with joyfulness and with gladness of mind, by the reason of the abundant of things, therefore shalt thou serve thine enemies, which the Lord God shall send against you, in hunger, in thirst, and in nakedness, and in want of all things, and He shall put a yoke of iron upon thy neck,” Deut 28:47-48.

Sunday, December 2, 2001

“He Kept Them as the Apple of His Eye,” Deuteronomy 32:10

Moses described in a most accurate fashion God’s care of ancient Israel. When the people groaned under oppressive slavery and writhed under the heartless taskmasters:

  1. “He found him in a desert land,
  2. In the waste howling wilderness,
  3. He led them about,
  4. He instructed him,
  5. He kept him as the apple of His eye.”

First God found the people. His eye of love was fixed on them. Then He led them, sometimes along a straight, sometimes a circuitous path from Egypt to the Promised Land. He instructed them by providential dealings, mercies, warnings, judgments, frequent interpositions of His power, by signal proof of His determination to bless them according to His Promise.

Yes, and He kept them as the apple of His eye. Meaning, He shielded the people in their hour of peril, manifesting Himself strong on their behalf. Such privileged and promised watchful guardianship.

Have you been found of God? Is He leading you? Are you being instructed by Him? Then rest calmly and unhesitantly upon the sure Promise that you will be kept by His mighty power. John 10:28-29.

Lord, You are my Shelter from the heat,
In every stormy gale,
Thou art my Hiding Place, and so,
My foes can never prevail.
Lord, keep me thus, tills storms shall cease,
Within Thy house of endless peace.

“He kept them as the apple of His eye,” Deut 32:19.

“As an Eagle ... so the Lord,” Deuteronomy 32:11, 12

Because the eagle has undisputed supremacy over the birds of the air, being known as the king of the skies, it is used in many interesting ways. For instance, its speed is remarkable.

“Swift as an eagle flieth,” Deut 28:49, Job 9:26, Prov 30:19.

None among the feathered creatures can surpass the eagle in speed of flight. How swift God is in His deliverance of His own!

Many bird nests are robbed simply because they are in easy reach. The eagle, however, endowed of God with wisdom, builds her nest on the highest crag of the rock where she knows her eggs and young will be safe.

The symbol of America is an eagle ... swift deliverance.

“Make Thy Nest as High as the Eagles,” Jeremiah 49:14, Job 38:27

In this passage, Jeremiah reminds Edom that her high and haughty spirit will be crushed. Who is higher than an eagle’s nest and Who knows how to bring the mighty from their nest?

As a symbol of Divine activities, the ways of an eagle are very expressive. Exodus 19:4, Jer 48:40. Moses used the eagle’s tenderness and care of its young to describe God’s kindness and provision.

The stirring up of the nest, fluttering over the young, spreading abroad the wings, can all be applied to the Promise of God’s consideration of His own, as well as a manifestation of Grace to us.

“The Name of the Lord is a Strong Tower: the Righteous Runneth Into It and is Safe,” Proverbs 18:10

“Thou hast made the most high Thy habitation,” Psa 91:9.

How invincible and impregnable God is as our Tower and Habitation! Having a promise of such a sure defense, we can sing, “A safe Foundation our God is still.”

Sheltered in Him and by Him, we can laugh to scorn all the embattled hosts of hell. The proud onslaught of the enemy is doomed to defeat. Who can harm us if we be followers of the Lord Jesus Christ? Promises of His protection are stars of Heaven kindled for our comfort in the darkest night.

“Lead Me to the Rock That is Higher Than I,” Psalm 61:2

How great is our need of “someone” Who is above ourselves, our cares, our trials, and our needs. Provoking and perplexing troubles assail us, but “This Mighty Rock in a weary land” is both above all the trouble and the turmoil of Earth. Look at Psalm 130 in this connection.

How happy we are if we have found the lofty and peaceful Retreat.

In the Lifted Rock I am resting,
Safely, sheltered, I abide.
There are no foes nor storms to molest me,
While within the Cleft I hide.

“Thou Art in the Clefts of the Rock,” S.O.S. 2:14

We are here promised, as the bride of Christ, several privileges. To Him we are as a dove, harmless and blameless. As the Rock, He was cleft at Calvary and we hide in Him.

“The secret places of the stairs” speak of our intimate, spiritual fellowship with Him, Who causes His face to be seen and His voice to be heard in His precious Word.

Because He waits to meet us in the secret places of the stairs, never let us disappoint our Beloved.

He hideth my soul in the Cleft of the Rock
And shelters me there with His hand.

“In the Shadow of Thy Wings Will I Make My Refuge,” Psalm 57:1

“As birds flying, so will the Lord of hosts defend Jerusalem,” Isaiah 31:5.

What a comforting Promise this is. It is indeed heartening to know that as the birds flutter over their nests with quivering and palpitating wings, so the Lord protects us.

No matter what perils may shadow us, even though it be the last shadow of death, all is well if we enjoy the shadow of God’s guardian wings. He shelters, protects, and preserves His children. In the shadow of His wings we may have power and peace and Heaven itself.

Monday, December 3, 2001

“I Am Thy Shield,” Genesis 15:1

“The Lord God is a Sun and a Shield,” Psa 84:11

Safety and protection are suggested by the simile of a Shield and the Lord promises to be our Shield. All who believe are blessed with believing Abraham, and so the promise God made to him He will fulfill to us and we certainly need Him as our Shield.

Are we not surrounded by foes? Do not fiery darts fly in every direction? But the Lord interposes Himself as our Shield. So mighty a Defender. And because He is our Defense, we must expect His protection. He Himself, His salvation, and our faith, form the Shield. So when alarm and dangers afright, let us look to Him as our Protector.

Because He is “a Sun and a Shield, He gives Grace and glory.”

“And there is no good thing He will withhold from those who walk uprightly,” Psa 84:11.

“God is Our Refuge and Our Strength,” Psalm 46:1

“I flee to Thee to hide me,” Psa 143:9

The provision of a refuge implies several things:

  1. There is the presence of danger. The Christian is ever in danger of self and Satan.
  2. There is fear. Often when one is pursued, they are afraid. But for those who have the Lord as a Refuge, all fears are groundless.
  3. A refuge suggests foresight. The Lord knew all about distant storms and provided Himself a covert accordingly.
  4. On our part, seeking the Refuge speaks of prudence. We hide in Him before the storm breaks.
  5. From the Lord’s side, the provision of a refuge reveals His laudable concern for our safety and comfort.

How privileged we are to have the Lord as our Eternal Refuge. When hounded by sin, the world, or our problems, we can flee to Him knowing that His ear is open to our cry and His hand is ready to help and deliver us.

His throne is our asylum, His Promise is our comfort, and His omnipotence is our guard.

The Test of Endurance

Go on, go on, go on,
Go on, go on, go on,
By the Grace that saved me,
I mean to go on.

Although such repetition does not have much substance in it, it does emphasize one thought. Namely, the need of endurance in the Christian way of life. Too many of us are like the builder the Lord Jesus Christ depicted, Who began to build, but was not able to finish.

Paul wrote Galatians for those who lacked this Grace of endurance. They began in the Spirit and drifted into the flesh. The Bible holds out many rich Promises for those who endure, and the passages are evident in Scripture.

“When they persecute you in one city, flee to another,” Matt 10:23.
“If ye continue in My Words, then are ye My disciples indeed,” John 8:31.
“Be ye steadfast, unmovable,” 1 Cor 15:58.


“Let us not be weary in well doing … if we faint not,” Gal 6:9.
“Hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end,” Heb 3:14.
“Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering,” Heb 10:23.
“Cast not away, therefore, your confidence which hath great recompense of reward,” Heb 10:35.
“Continue in the Son and in the Father,” 1 John 2:24, 28.
“Be thou faithful unto death,” Rev 2:10.

An ancient proverb has it, “He that endures is not overcome.” The above exhortations coupled as they are with promised blessings and reward, reveal how Spirit-inspired endurance can make us more than conquerors.

Think of the Further Encouragement We Have in the Exercise of This Grace Perseverance

“They shall never perish. No one is able to pluck them out of My Father’s hand,” John 10:28-29.
“Neither death nor life ... shall be able to separate us,” Rom 8:38-39.
“Who shall also confirm you to the end,” 1 Cor 1:8.
“Now He which stablished us …; sealed us, is God,” 2 Cor 1:21-22.
“He which began a good work in you will perform it,” Phil 1:6.
“Faithful is He that calleth you, Who will also do it,” 1 Thes 5:24.
“The Lord is faithful, Who will stablish you, and keep you from evil,” 2 Thes 3:3.
“The righteous is an everlasting foundation,” Prov 10:25.

While these Scriptures and others we could cite, set forth the Christian’s eternal security in the Lord Jesus Christ, they do not provide Him with any license to live carelessly, indolently, and despairingly. While we never can be lost because we are saved by Grace, lack of determination to be true to the Lord Jesus Christ in spite of adversary can result in loss of reward.

That is what Paul meant when he voiced his fear about being a “castaway,” or disapproved, not counted worthy of a prize from the Lord Jesus Christ’s hand in the grand day of rewards.

Remember December Seventh – December 7, 1941

And thank your Father in Heaven,
When Pearl Harbor was attacked,
And America came fighting back.

Japanese politicians were in Washington.
They bombed us and thought they won.

But America’s sons fought and died,
And our freedom is still alive.

Remember December seven,
Thank your Father in Heaven,
For the victory He did win,
And America is free once again.

The Next Event on the Lord’s Calendar

“Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we will all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.”

Tuesday, December 4, 2001


Longfellow reminds us that “patient endurance is God-like,” to which Scripture agrees. See Lam 3:25-27, Heb 10:36, James 5:8, 1 Pet 2:20, Prov 10:28. In a good many cases the word “endure” carries with it the idea of continuance, abiding.

“His anger endureth for a moment,” Psa 30:5.
“The goodness of God endureth for ever,” Psa 52:1, 100:5.
“Thou shalt endure,” Psa 102:26-27.
“Thy dominion endureth throughout all generations,” Psa 145:13.

In other passages, however, endure means to bear up courageously under trials and testings, to be steadfast, long-tempered, to bravely tolerate. For this kind of endurance, Promises are offered.

“Then shalt thou be able to endure,” Ex 18:23.


“He that shall endure to the end, the same shall be saved,” Matt 24:13.

Since this statement of the Lord Jesus Christ has been misconstrued to teach what is called “the falling away from Doctrine,” it is necessary to examine it in the light of the context.

The Lord Jesus Christ was not referring to a spiritual salvation when He spoke. As verse 22 makes it clear, He had in mind a “physical deliverance.”

“Except those days be shortened, there should no flesh be saved.”

The shortening of the Tribulation period will mean that many believers will be saved from suffering and martyrdom.


We do not endure to be saved at some future date. We endure “because we are saved.”

“The enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer,” 2 Cor 1:6.
“Your persecutions and tribulations which ye endure,” 2 Thes 1:4.
“Endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ,” 2 Tim 2:3.
“Blessed is the man that endureth temptation,” James 1:12.
“Jesus ... endured the Cross,” Heb 12:2.
“Consider Him who that endureth such contradiction of sinners against Himself,” Heb 12:3.

The foregoing passages exhibiting both Divine and human endurance and the promised reward of them would serve to nerve us for the challenge of life. If we remain true and steadfast in the fight of faith, the dross vanishes and we retain the gold.

As believers, we endure not for any material gain, but that a full reward will be ours at Christ’s judgment day.

A Bunch of “Everlastings”

How blessed it is to live with eternity’s values in view!

We are like Bunyan’s man with the muckrake, seeing what is only at our feet, and not as conscious as we ought to be about the crown of gold above our head.

They said of Corot, the renowned artist, he always began the painting of his immortal landscapes with the skies. May it be with skies and with the Lord that we are careful to begin, not with the Earth and with its tarnish and rust.

To gather under one heading all the Promises of “eternal life,” “reward,” and “blessedness” is a profitable exercise for the believer in the Lord Jesus Christ.

“Eternal and everlasting” are equivalent terms.
“The eternal God ... the Everlasting Arms,” Deut 33:27.

Eternal and Everlasting!

“Eternal salvation ... eternal redemption,” Heb 5:9, 9:12.
“Eternal glory,” 2 Cor 4:17, 2 Tim 2:10.
“A home ... eternal in the Heavens,” 2 Cor 5:1, Luke 16:9.
“Everlasting joy ... everlasting love,” Isa 35:10, Jer 31:3.
“Everlasting kindness,” “everlasting consolation,” Isa 54:8, Jer 10:10.
“Everlasting kindness,” “everlasting consolation,” Thes 2:16.
“The way of everlasting ... an everlasting King,” Psa 139:34, Jer 10:10.
“Eternal life,” “power of an endless life,” Titus 1:2, Heb 7:16.

For a confirmation of your faith, go over all the passages related to eternal or everlasting life. You will be surprised as you collate all promised future joys and blessings.

“I give unto them eternal life and no man shall pluck them out of My hand,” John 10:28.
“And out of My Father’s hand,” John 10:29.

The Power of Faith

Since there are over 500 references to “faith” and its kindred term “believe” in the Bible, it is difficult to list all of these verses so we will briefly expound the majority of them.

In fact, exposition is not necessary because the passages speak for themselves. Each passage is a Promise. Attached to them are numerous Promises as to the power and reward of faith.

If we would be strong in faith, one way sure of gaining great faith is to prayerfully study every passage where “faith” and “believe” and “trust” are found in Scripture.

“Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.”

The Power of Faith

“Have faith in God,” Mark 11:22.
“According to thy faith,” Matt 9:29.
“Justified by faith,” Rom 5:1.
“The just shall live by faith,” Rom 1:17.
“Without faith it is impossible to please God,” Heb 11:6.
“Ask in faith,” James 1:6.
“The joy of faith,” Phil 1:25.
“Precious faith,” 2 Pet 1:1.
“This is the victory ... even our faith,” 1 John 5:4.
“Full assurance of faith,” Heb 10:22, 11:1.
“Contend earnestly for the faith,” Jude 3.
“Unfeigned faith,” 2 Tim 1:5.
“Breastplate of faith,” Eph 6:16, 1 Thes 5:8.

“Faith in God.” Faith is a transitive verb and all the merit is in the Object of faith, which is God.

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved,” Acts 16:31.

Thought for the Day!

“They fought from Heaven, the stars in their course fought against Sisera,” Judges 5:20.

All things animate and inanimate are on the Lord’s side. All things are the friends and servants of him who is the friend and servant of the Lord.

“All things are yours,” “And you are Christ’s,” “And Christ is God’s.”
“All are Thy servants, angels, stars, creatures of the Earth, according to Thine ordinances.”

And since this is true, that the “all” is an ordered whole which is obedient to the touch and to the will of the Divine Commander, then all His servants must be on the same side. And they cannot turn their arms against each other.

Thought for the Day!

“All things work together for good to them that love the Lord and are the called according to His purpose,” Rom 8:28.
“They meant it for evil, but God meant it for good, to deliver many souls alive,” Gen 50:20.

Now how is that possible?

Well, everything is my friend. And everything is for me and not against me that helps me to get nearer to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, December 5, 2001

Among the 300 References to “Believe,” “Believers,” “Believed,” We Have Chosen a Couple of Them to Keep Us “Believing”

“All that believe are justified,” Acts 13:39.
“I believe God,” Acts 27:25.
“I know Whom I have believed,” 2 Tim 1:12.
“Only believe,” Mark 5:36.
“Unto you that believe, He is precious,” 1 Pet 2:7.
“We believe that we shall live with Him,” Rom 6:8.
“Whosoever … that believeth on Him shall never die,” John 11:26.
“Joy and peace in believing,” Rom 15:13.
“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved,” Acts 16:31.

The world says “seeing is believing.” But the Christian axiom is “believing is seeing.” Did not the Lord Jesus Christ say, “Blessed are they who have not seen, yet have believed?”

Belief or faith, means taking God at His Word. “Faith is the evidence of things not seen.” Unbelief, of which the Bible has a great deal to say, is the root of all sin. It rejects the miraculous and stumbles over the clear statements of God’s Word. “Without faith it is impossible to please Him.”

“For by Grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; It is a gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast,” Eph 2:8-9.

The Call to Faithfulness!

To be “faith full” means more than being full of faith. The term means fidelity, steadfast, stability. When used of God, “faithfulness” expresses the attribute of Deity by which He infallibly fulfills His purposes and His promises of His Word.

All the writers of Scripture unite to magnify God for His faithful fidelity, which runs as a golden thread through Scripture.

“Thy faithfulness reaches unto the clouds,” Psa 36:5, 1 Pet 4:19.
“I have declared Thy faithfulness,” Psa 40:10.
“Thy faithfulness to all generations,” Psa 89:1, 2, 5, 8, 24, 33, 119:5.

We can name this great Psalm “The Psalm of Divine faithfulness.”


“In Thy faithfulness answer me,” Psa 143:1, Rev 21:5, 22:6.
“He is God, the faithful God,” Deut 7:9.
“The counsels of old are faithfulness and truth,” Isa 25:1.
“The Lord that is faithful,” Isa 49:7, Heb 10:23.
“Great is Thy faithfulness,” Lam 3:23, Heb 11:11.
“He abideth faithful,” 2 Tim 2:23, 1 Cor 1:9, 10:13.
“I will even betroth thee unto Me in faithfulness,” Hosea 2:26.

All of these testimonies are heavy with the promise of God’s unfailing care and provision for His own. There has never been the least flicker in the lamp of Divine loyalty.

“Thou art the same.” As the faithful God, He must be true to His own nature, Isa 25:1. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins, and cleanse us from all iniquity,” 1 John 1:9.

We Have the Same Quality of “Faithfulness” in the Life of the Lord Jesus Christ Exhibited For Us Who Came Revealing the Divine Attributes

“His seed … shall be established for ever,” Psa 89:36-37.
“The Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you,” 2 Thes 3:3, Heb 2:7.
“The faithful and the true Witness,” Rev 1:5, 3:14, 19:11.

Solomon asked the question, “But a faithful man who can find?” The Man, the Lord Jesus Christ was faithful in all things. If ever “one” was faithful unto death, it was the Lord Jesus Christ.

Then We Have in Scripture Examples of Those Who Believed in the Lord Jesus Christ and Served Him, “the Faithful One”

“He was a faithful man and feared God above many,” Neh 7:2.
“Daniel ... forasmuch he was faithful,” Dan 6:4.
“They which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham,” Gal 3:9.
“Moses was faithful in all his house,” Heb 3:5.
“He counted me (Paul) faithful,” 1 Tim 1:12, Acts 16:15.
“Silvanus, a faithful brother unto you,” 1 Pet 5:12.
“Epaphras ... a faithful minister of Christ,” Col 1:7.
“Tychicus ... a faithful minister,” Col 4:7.
“Timothy ... my beloved son, faithful in the Lord,” 1 Cor 4:17.
“Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother,” Col 4:9.
“Gaius ... thou dost faithfully,” 3 John 5.
“Antipas, my faithful martyr,” Rev 2:13.
“The Church in Smyrna ... faithful unto death,” Rev 2:14.

These saints at Smyrna sealed their faithful witness like those described for us in Hebrews chapter eleven, with their life’s blood.

“The just shall live by faith.”

Faithfulness For Us as Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ Carries Many Promises of Divine Favor, Preservation, and Reward

Faithfulness is Obedience to a Divine Command

“Be thou faithful unto death,” Rev 2:10. There are many privileges we enjoy in the Christian way of life and faithfulness is a debt that must be discharged in a three-fold way – Godward, among ourselves, and toward a lost world. Here are some of the aspects of faithfulness:

“The Lord preserved the faithful,” Psa 31:23.
“A faithful and wise servant,” Matt 24:45, 25:21, Luke 16:10, 19:17.
“Required … that a man be found faithful,” 1 Cor 4:2.
“The faithful in Christ Jesus,” Eph 1:1, Col 1:2.
“Be thou faithful, I will give thee a crown of life,” Rev 2:10.
“They were counted faithful,” 1 Sam 22:14.
“Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful,” Psa 101:6.
“Let him speak My Word faithfully,” Jer 23:28.


Oppositely, the promise of condemnation is attached to faithlessness.

“There is no faithfulness in their mouths,” Psa 5:9.
“O faithless generation,” Matt 17:17.
“Be not faithless, but believing,” John 20:27.

Happily we are not let to ourselves to produce the faithfulness God commands and commends. What He commands He supplies.

“Faithful is He who called you, Who will also do.”

In describing the varied fruit of the Spirit, Paul says that “The fruit of the Spirit if faithfulness.” Thus we do not and cannot produce it. We only bear it. As we constantly walk in the Spirit, He makes possible the loyalty and fidelity that is pleasing to our faithful Lord and that brings us at the end of the day the promised reward.

“Well done thou good and faithful servant.”

Thought for Today!

“O perish all thine enemies, O Lord! But thy friends be like the sun as he rises in his might,” Judges 5:31.

Now how did your pastor explain this passage?

“But thy friends,” literally, they that love you, “will be like the sun as he rises in his might.”

The sun is radiant and full of energy, light, and might. Those who love the Lord will be full of radiance, energy, light, and might.

The comparable New Testament passage is that believers in the Lord Jesus Christ are “the light of the world.” Once in darkness, now light in the Lord, so walk in the light.

Thursday, December 6, 2001

The Tyranny of Fear!

In our action dealing with the physical realm, we draw attention to “fear” as a despot of the emotions of the soul. Enumerating the passages on fear – many of our fears are groundless. And they are a form of distrust in our Lord’s ability to undertake for us as He has promised us.

Often we are guilty of fearing things that are safe. The foundation of all our hopes and fears are in a future life. But to the Christian there should be no fear regarding either this present or the future, because the Lord has promised to take care of both.

Fear has a thousand eyes, that all agree,
To plague her beating heart.

“There is no fear in love,” 1 John 4:18. If our hearts have been warmed by that Divine love and our lives are absorbed by it, then all fear as to the future is cast out.

“Only fear JEHOVAH,” 1 Sam 12:24, Psa 128:1, Prov 1:7.

The basis of a godly fear, the only fear we should have, is all that God is Himself, and all that He has accomplished on our behalf.

“My Heart Will Not Fear,” Psalm 27:3

I backward cast my eye on prospects drear,
And forward, though I can see, I guess and fear.

But guesses and fears should have no place in a Christian’s thinking. Certainty is written all over the sure Promises of God.

”Fear not, for I am with thee. Be not dismayed.
“For I am thy God. I will give thee aid,
“I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,
“Upheld by My gracious, omnipotent hand.”

“When I am afraid, I will trust in Thee.”

The Joy of Fellowship!

“Fellowship” and all that it represents to a Christian is confined to the New Testament. It occurs only twice in the Old Testament.

“Commit a trespass ... in fellowship,” Lev 6:2.
“Shall the throne of iniquity have fellowship with thee,” Psa 94:20.

In both cases the fellowship is of the wrong kind, and it is akin to the evil companionship referred to by the apostle Paul.

“That ye should have fellowship with demons,” 1 Cor 10:20.
“Have no fellowship with the unfruitful,” Eph 5:11.

Used in a right sense, the communion of the saints is a most privileged and precious experience. An animate, filial fellowship, this is none of the half-faced fellowship Shakespeare spoke about. It is full communion here and now with the promise of eternal communion.

Breaking Up the Word “Fellowship,” We Find it to Mean Exactly That, the Other Fellow in the Ship

“They continued steadfastly ... in fellowship,” Acts 2:4.
“Ye were called into the fellowship,” 1 Cor 1:9.
“The fellowship of the ministering,” 2 Cor 8:4.
“The right hands of fellowship,” Gal 2:9.
“The fellowship of the mystery,” Eph 3:9.
“Your fellowship in the Gospel,” Phil 1:5.
“If any fellowship of the Spirit,” Phil 2:1, 2 Cor 13:14.
“The fellowship of His sufferings,” Phil 3:10.
“Ye also may have fellowship with us,” 1 John 1:3, 7.
“Truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son,” 1 John 1:3.

We sadly confess the lack of this many-sided fellowship among professing Christians today. Isolated in our own sphere of worship we sing, “Bless be the ties that bind, Our hearts in Christian love.”

But the fact remains that we appear to be hopelessly divided, with this group refusing to have any fellowship with another group. How far removed we are from the “fellowship one with another” which the apostle wrote about.

The Bearing of Fruit!

As branches of the vine, it is our responsibility to bear fruit to God’s praise and glory. If fruitless, then there must be obstruction in the life which prevents the sap in the vine from reaching her branches.

We have been promised a fruit-bearing life, for which live provision has been made. Peter makes it clear that as the life, so the fruit.

“If these things,” see the list in verses 5-7, “be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ,” 2 Pet 1:8. What a Promise for a Christian to claim!

Peter enumerates the virtues forming the soil, producing the fruit. Such fruit is the overflow of life, and we must be full before we can overflow. If we realize that we have been fruitless professors, let us closely observe the graces so essential to fruit bearing. There must be fruit within if we are to bear fruit without. All the graces and the fruit are Divinely provided.

“From Me is thy fruit,” Hosea 14:5.

Only as I abide in Thee,
Can fruit in me be found.
But for Thy Grace I long have been
Destroyed, by God cut down.
But Thou hast bled, and Thou hast died,
Thy Grace do so abound.
Or I had perished long ago,
A cumberer of the ground.

Fruit and Fruitfulness

Over 200 passages are taken up with fruit and fruit bearing, which cover natural fruit, moral, physical, and spiritual fruit, or blessings. Look at these passages carrying their own Promise, encouragements, and warning.

“I create the fruit of the lips,” Isa 57:19, Prov 12:14, 18:20, Heb 13:15.

Our speech and testimony are a part of the fruit the Husbandman expects.

“Bless the fruit of thy womb,” Duet 7:13, Psa 132:11, Luke 1:42.
“Blessed be the fruit of thy body,” Deut 28:4, 11.
“Take root downward and bear fruit upward,” 2 Kings 19:20, Isa 37:31.

Let us never be guilty of the folly of trying to have fruit without root.

“Bringeth forth His fruit in His season,” Psa 1:3, 104:13, Prov 10:3.
“They shall eat the fruit of their own way,” Prov 1:31, Isa 3:10.
“My fruit is better than gold,” Prov 8:19.
“He bringeth forth fruit unto Himself,” Hosea 10:1.

Fruit Bearing

“Ye have eaten the fruit of lies,” Hosea 16:13.
“The fruit of righteousness,” Amos 6:12.
“The fruit of the wicked to sin,” Prov 10:16.
“Increase the fruits of your righteousness,” 2 Cor 9:10, Heb 12:11, Phil 1:10.
“Ye shall know them by their fruits,” Matt 7:16-20, 12:33, 13:8.
“Fruit unto life eternal,” John 4:36.
“He bringeth forth much fruit,” John 12:24, 15:5.
“The branch cannot bear fruit of itself,” John 15:2-16.
“The fruit of the Spirit,” Gal 5:22-23, Eph 5:9.
“They shall bring forth fruit in old age,” Psa 92:13-14.
“Fruitful in every good work,” Col 1:10.

How variegated is the fruit we are to bear. It represents every phase of life. May we be spared from functioning as empty vines.

“Without Me ye can do nothing.”

Dead unto sin, alive in Thee,
More and more fruitful would I be.
A branch of Thee, Thou living vine,
My soul around Thee would entwine.
Abiding in Thy mighty power,
O make me fruitful every hour.

“I am the Vine. Ye are the branches!”

Thought for the Day!

When you spend time with a person and you have a relationship with them, others say, you know they look like one another. When they saw the disciples, “They knew that they had been with the Lord Jesus Christ.”

Love always tends to likeness.

“When we see Him, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.”

Friday, December 7, 2001

“Every Branch in Me That Beareth Not Fruit He Taketh Away,” John 15:2

This is a statement that has caused some believers some concern. Does it teach as some affirm, that we can be saved today but lost tomorrow? Certainly not. First of all, notice where the believer as a branch is “in Me.” Once an integral part of the Lord Jesus Christ, such a union can never be dissolved.

Fellowship may be severed, but union never. The words “taken away” are literally lifted up. A gardener noticing a branch trailing in the dust where it cannot enjoy the sun and the full benefit of the forces of nature, lifts it up, and gives it a higher position.

Often fruit is not ours because we live too close to the Earth. Our affections are not set on high so the Divine Gardener comes along and separates us from worldly pursuits and raises us up from fleshly desires. Are we trailing along with the world?

“The Branch Cannot Bear Fruit of Itself Except it Abide in the Vine,” John 15:4

An aspect of the Truth our Lord enfolds in this chapter is that He is not the Root or the Stem only, He is the whole Vine. Thus, what the Lord Jesus Christ covers is every branch, every leaf, every tendril of the whole plant.

The same idea is presented where the name “Christ” is given to the whole body, 1 Cor 12:12. The Christian is to abide in Christ, as the branch abides in the Vine. The function of the branch is to maintain connection with the stem, to receive the life-sap at one end and to bear fruit at the other end.

“We Should Bring Forth Fruit Unto God,” Romans 7:4

Our Father is glorified when we bear much fruit – fruit of holiness, fruit of devotion in Him, fruit of witnessing, fruit of soul-saving. No abiding – no fruit.

Paul is writing about being married to the Lord Jesus Christ, which means we have renounced our own name, and have taken His, that we may live upon His fullness, and walk by His Word, and seek to please Him in all things. Our good works represent the fruits of our oneness with Him.

The Bond of Friendship

Because all of us are in need of human friends, it is most important to be wise and careful in the choice of friendships. Is this not one of the most serious responsibilities of life?

It is essential to have those friends who will not fail us at any point, but who are at hand to help in time of need, and also ready to share our happiness. Such a tie of personal friendship is not a tie of duty merely, or of obligation, but a bond more close and intimate.

We have all had experience with those fair weather friends. The friends whose friendship we revere are those who act as an elixir of life. A true friend redoubles joy and cuts grief in half.

We come to what the Bible has to say about the choice and function of friends, and of the promised friendship of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Bond of Friendship

The English word, “friend,” suggests different things in the original language. In some cases it denotes the idea of “loving as well as being loved,” a term of endearment. Then there is the idea of comradeship or partnership, as when the Lord Jesus Christ said to Judas, “Friend (companion) wherefore art thou come,” Matt 26:50.

What a false partner Judas proved himself to be. He failed to realize that the true friendship is love without wings. Drop the “r” out of friend and you have “fiend,” which Judas appeared to be.

We often think of Abraham as one of the most privileged men in the Bible because of his friendship with the Eternal.

“Abraham, Thy friend forever,” 2 Chr 20:7.
“The seed of Abraham, My friend,” Isa 41:1.
“Abraham believed God … and he was called the friend of God,” James 2:23.

The Bond of Friendship!

Moses was another who experienced similar intimate friendship, for it is said of him, “that the Lord spake unto Moses face to face as a man speaketh unto his friend,” Ex 33:11.

But the patriarchs are not alone in such a blessed heavenly friendship. Did not the Lord Jesus Christ describe those who love and trust Him as His friends?

“Ye are My friends, if you do whatsoever I command you,” John 15:14.
“I have called you friends,” John 15:15, Luke 12:4, John 11:11.

But this promise of exalted friendship carries the condition of obedience to the wishes of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

“The Rich Hath Many Friends,” Proverbs 14:20, 19:4

Sad these so-called friends often vanish with the riches. As the prodigal discovered when all was spent and not one companion in his riotous living days was at hand to give him a meal!

Who finds himself with friends is like a body without a soul.

“Faithful are the wounds of a friend,” Prov 27:6.
“All my inward friends abhorred me,” Job 19:19, 21.
“A friend of the world is the enemy of God,” James 4:4.
“A friend loveth at all times,” Prov 17:17.
“A man that hath friends must show himself friendly,” Prov 18:24.
“Thine own friend, thy father’s friend, forsake not,” Prov 27:10.
“He may say unto you, Friend, go up higher,” Luke 14:10.
“Iron sharpeneth iron, so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend,” Prov 27:17.

What guidance the above cameos of friendship provide for those who seek companionship, or those friends which Shakespeare describes in Julius Caesar. “He was my friend faithful and just to me.” If we are blessed with loyal and true friends, let us value them and follow this advice. A man should keep his friendships in repair.

The Fact Remains, However, That No Matter How Dead and Beneficial an Earthly Friend May be, the Best Cannot Bring Us as Much as the Lord Jesus Christ

Who wants to be a Friend and whose friendship is pure and heavenly

2 Tim 4:10. There is not a Friend like the lowly Lord Jesus Christ.

Human friendships cannot go all the way, but the friendship of the Lord Jesus Christ is an eternal one.

Whatever other friendships you may miss, miss not the friendship of the Lord Jesus Christ. You may miss me, but don’t miss the Lord Jesus Christ.

Whatever else you may leave out of your life, let no one leave the Lord Jesus Christ out of his life.

“This is my beloved and this is my friend,” S.O.S. 5:16.
“The Son of man, Friend of publicans and sinners,” Matt 11:19.
“I say unto you, My friends, be not afraid,” Luke 12:4.

It is Quite Understandable That a True Friend Should be Ready to Sacrifice His Life For One He is Bound to With Cords of Deep Affection

But the marvel of marvels is that our heavenly Friend died on the Cross, not for the few close friends around Him, but for His enemies.

“When we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son,” Romans 5:10.
“The enemies of the Cross of Christ,” Phil 3:18.

It is not somewhat striking that after the Lord Jesus Christ had been delivered up to death, Pilate and Herod, hitherto at enmity, became friends, Luke 21:12. What a reconciliating factor the Cross is. But what a friendlessness was His at the end.

“My lovers and friends stood afar off,” Psa 38:11.
“Lovers and friends hast Thou put far from me,” Psa 88:18.
“What are those wounds ... these with which I was wounded in the house of My friends,” Zech 13:6-7.

Thought for the Day – Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941!

Breathes there a man with soul so dead,
Who never to himself hath said,
“This is my own, my native land.”
Whose heart hath never within him burned,
As home his footsteps he hath turned,
From wandering on a foreign strand.

If such there breathe, go, mark him well,
For him no minstrel raptures swell.
High though his titles, proud his name,
Boundless his wealth as wish can claim.

Despite those titles, power and pelf,
The wretch, concentrated all in self.
Living, shall forfeit fair renown,
And, doubly dying, shall go down,
To the vile dust from whence he sprang,
Unwept, unhonored, and unsung.

Thought for the Day – December 7, 1941!

“It is not the critic that counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better.

“The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly, who errs, and comes short again and again.

“Who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who, at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.”

Those in the Military!

Away in foreign fields they wondered how,
Their simple words had power.
At home, some Christians, two or three, had
Not forgot to pray an hour.

We are always wondering, wondering how
Because we do not see,
Someone, perhaps unknown and far away
On bended knee.

Be not afraid to pray, to pray is right,
Pray if you can, with hope, but ever pray.
Though hope be weak, or sick with long delay,
Pray in the darkness if there be no light.


A Friend

The Lord Jesus Christ offers Himself not only as a Saviour to those who are lost, but as a Friend to those who are saved by Grace.

He is a friend that loves us at all times and who sticks closer than a brother. Prov 17:17, 18:24.

Is it not condescending of Him to allow us to call Him Friend? May we understand increasingly all that is implied in this covenant of eternal relationship with Him.

Such a privileged friendship should purify life and nerve us to the best and noblest service. In the Lord Jesus Christ we have the Friend who never leaves our side. In all times, and under all circumstances He is at hand to console, succor, and relieve.

If we could only think always of the Lord Jesus Christ as we do a friend, as One who unfeignedly loves us, even more than we do ourselves, whose heart is set upon us to do us good.

The Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour-Friend!

I would converse with thee from day to day,
With heart intent on what Thou hast to say.
And through my pilgrim walk, whatever may befall,
Consult with Thee, O Lord, about it all.

Since Thou art willing thus to condescend,
To be my intimate, familiar Friend.
Oh let me to the great occasion rise,
And count Thy friendship life’s most gracious prize.

The One Who Never Forsakes!

An aspect of Divine companionship is that of the Promise of the companion Himself never to forsake us, Heb 13:5. Here, the word “forsake” means “to leave behind” in any state or place. He will never abandon us, no matter how we may be.

Irrespective of our straits, He is there to undertake. Paul was heartbroken over the way his close friend had treated him. “Demas hath forsaken me,” 2 Tim 4:10, see 4:16. In the Lord Jesus Christ, however, we have One who will never treat us like that.

Earthly friends may fail or leave us,
One day soothe, the next day grieve us.
But this Friend will never deceive us,
Oh, how He loves!

This Abiding One, the Lord Jesus Christ, Knows What it is, Like Paul, to be Forsaken Not Only by Man, But by God the Father

“Thou hast forsaken Me, saith the Lord,” Jer 15:6.
“They forsook the Lord God of their fathers,” Judges 2:12, 13, 10:6, 10, 13.
“Which have forsaken the right way,” 2 Pet 2:15.
“Why is the house of God forsaken?” Neh 13:11.
“My people ... have forsaken Me,” Jer 2:13.
“They forsook Him and fled,” Luke 14:50.

It is interesting to compare this heartless desertion with the noble desertion of the disciples. When they first met the Lord Jesus Christ and He called them to follow Him, we read, “They forsook all and followed Him,” Luke 5:11.

But the thought of the peril associated with close discipleship frightened them and so we read, “Then they saw the swords and staves, they forsook Him,” Matt 26:56.

The Crown of Our Saviour’s Anguish Was the Consciousness That as He Bore the Load of Human Sin, His Own Father’s Face Was Turned From Him

So we have this piercing cry, “My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me,” Matt 27:46. That was God forsaken of God.

It was because He was forsaken in that dark hour that He is able to say to every child of His, “I will never forsake thee.” This bright Promise runs throughout the Word of God.

“The Lord will not forsake His people,” 1 Sam 12:22.
“Yet our God hath not forsaken us,” Ezra 9:9.
“The God of Israel will not forsake them,” Isa 41:17.
“Forsake not the works of Thine hands,” Psa 138:8.

The Lord Jesus Christ Has Left Us With the Promise of Reward if We Are Willing to Forsake All For His Sake

He plainly declares that unless we are prepared to forsake all, we cannot be His disciples. Luke 14:33.

But if we forsake all, then we shall receive a hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life, Matt 19:29.

Moses forsook Egypt, as seeing Him who is invisible. Heb 11:27.

Never leave thee nor forsake thee,
This is My Promise. Gracious Lord,
I am resting, simply resting,
On Thy true and faithful Word,
I know that Thou art with me still.

The Joy of Forgiveness!

We would have been of all men most miserable had there been no Divine forgiveness of sin. But how rich and full are the Promises associated with such a blessed Gospel Truth.

“Born today in the city of David, is our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will forgive His people of their sins.”

What is forgiveness? Some say it is the giving up of an inward feeling of injury or resentment, the removing of the feeling of anger and restoring a feeling of favor and affection.

It would seem that Paul had this significance in mind when in his synagogue message at Antioch he said, “Through this Man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sin. And by Him all that believe are justified from all things,” Acts 13:38-39.

If you want to know what forgiveness of sin is really like, than just follow the following Promise.

“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved.”

Since the Key Passages on Forgiveness Are Generally Known, a Brief Classification of Some Will Suffice

  1. God is the God of forgiveness.
“There is forgiveness with Thee,” Psa 130:4.
“The Lord our God ... forgiveness, “ Dan 9:9.
“Thou, Lord, art ... ready to forgive,” Psa 86:5.
“He, full of compassion, forgave,” Psa 78:30.
“Thou wast a God that forgavest them,” Psa 99:8.
“Who forgiveth all their iniquities,” Psa 103:3, Dan 9:19, Amos 7:2, etc.

The next category: 2. God alone is able to forgive sin.

Sunday, December 9, 2001


  1. God alone is able to forgive.
    ”Who can forgive sin but God only,” Mark 2:7, 1 John 1:9.
    “Father forgive them,” Matt 6:14, Luke 23:24, Mark 11:25.
    “The Son of man hath power ... to forgive sins,” Luke 5:24, Gal 3:13.
  2. God forgives sin through the Cross.
    “God, for Christ’s sake, hath forgiven you,” Eph 4:32.
    “A Saviour ... to give... forgiveness of sins,” Acts 5:31, 13:28.
    “In whom we have the forgiveness of sins,” Eph 1:7, Col 1:14.
  3. God forgives sin on the basis of a change of mind.
    “Repent ye,” Matt 3:2, 4:17, Acts 2:38, Luke 13:5.
    “Repent ye therefore ... that your sins may be blotted out,” Acts 3:19.
  4. God says we are blessed if forgiven.
    “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven,” Psa 32:1, 103:3 Rom 4:7.
  5. God commands the forgiven to forgive.
    “Forgiving one another, as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you,” Eph 4:32, Col 3:13.
    “Lord how oft shall ... I forgive him,” Matt 18:21, Luke 11:4.

The Oil of Gladness

Because the Bible has much to say about “gladness” and the Lord Jesus Christ exhorts us to be “exceedingly glad,” a summary of the prominent passages with Promises might prove profitable.

The Hebrew and Greek words used for our English terms glad, gladness, and gladly mean, “rejoicing, to be good,” as well as “glad, to leap, to make joyful, to be of good cheer.”

The constant exhortation to manifest a joyful spirit reflects the Divine character. The Lord Jesus Christ was “anointed with the oil of gladness above His fellows,” Heb 1:9, Psa 105:43. Such gladness as the Bible describes is not a mere feeble emotion, or a worked up excitement, and so effervescent that it quickly evaporates. It is a gladness from and in the Lord.

“I will be glad and rejoice in Thee,” Psa 9:2.
“Be glad in the Lord and rejoice,” Psa 32:11, 64:10, 104:34.

It is a Gladness Springing From the Provision and Experience of God’s Saving Grace and Mercy

Such rejoicing is one of the evidences of regeneration, Deuteronomy 28:47.

“He hath done great things for us ... We are glad,” Psa 126:3.
“I will be glad and rejoice in Thy mercy,” Psa 31:7, Isa 25:9.
“Seen the Grace of God was glad,” Acts 11:23.
“For Thou, Lord, hast made us glad through Thy work,” Psa 92:4.
“We declare unto you good tidings ... Good news,” Luke 1:19, Acts 13:32.
“Then were the disciples glad when they saw the Lord,” John 20:20.
“Love the Lord with gladness,” Psa 100:2, 2 Chr 20:30.

The acme of gladness is the vision of the Lord.

As those experiencing the gladness of Grace, we are repeatedly called upon to serve the Lord, not grudgingly, but gladly.

Strange Though It May Seem, We Are Urged to be Glad Even in Grief

Such victory over adversity carries with it the promised reward in Heaven.

“Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great shall be your reward,” Matt 5:12.
“Thou hast made us glad according to the days wherein Thou hast afflicted us,” Psa 90:15.
“Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities,” 2 Cor 12:9, 15.

Calm the sadness look in gladness,
To thy Friend on high.
Faint and weary pilgrim, cheer thee,
His help is nigh.

The Treasures of Goodness!

As there are almost 1,000 passages in which good, goodness, and their cognates are to be found, we can not do more in this section than to indicate some of the conspicuous features and promised blessings of God’s goodness.

Here again the original of our English words is replete with many meanings. Beautiful, benefit, pleasing, life, kindness, strong or courageous, recompense, honor, are among the outstanding implications of “goodness.” God is good as opposed to anything that is bad.

“Thou art good and doest good,” Psa 119:68.
“Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good,” Psa 135:2.

God can never act contrary to His own character. All that He is in Himself, He is in all His associations with man. Because of His kind, benevolent nature, He delights in promoting the happiness of His own by supplying their needs and relieving their distresses.

His is a goodness in the absolute, highest, and most perfect sense.

God the Father is Abundant in Goodness!

“The Lord ... abundant in goodness,” Ex 34:6.
“The Earth is full of His goodness,” Psa 33:5.
“How great is Thy goodness,” Psa 31:19, Zech 9:17, Psa 14:2.
“The goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance,” Rom 2:4.
“Behold, therefore the goodness and the severity of God,” Rom 11:22.
“The good pleasure of His goodness,” 2 Thes 1:11.
“His goodness toward us in Christ Jesus,” Eph 2:7.
“After the goodness and love of God toward man appeared,” Titus 3:4.

Goodness, God’s Word is Like Himself

“Thy judgments are good,” Psa 119:39.
“Good is the Word of the Lord,” Isa 39:8.
“The Words of faith and of Good Doctrine,” 1 Tim 4:6.
“Him that teacheth you in all good things,” Gal 6:6.
“Stablish you in every good work,” 2 Thes 2:17.

Christmas 2001 – Don’t Take Christ Out of Christmas!

For the past 40 years the Lord Jesus Christ and the Word of God have completely changed my life. For the past 40 years I have been trying to teach the Word of God and present the Lord Jesus Christ in such a way as that other lives may be changed also.

For the past 40 years I have been sustained by the Lord Jesus Christ and the Word of God and the people who have provided for me so that I could have a livelihood.

So, this Christmas I thank the Lord for all of you and the gracious way in which you have provided for me.

Monday, December 10, 2001


God the Son is good.

“Who went about doing good,” Acts 10:28.
“Good master ... there is none good, but one, that is God,” Mark 10:17-18.
“Every good thing which is in you is Christ,” Philemon 6, Eph 2:10.

God the Holy Spirit is good.

“Thou gavest also Thy good Spirit,” Neh 9:20.
“The Spirit is good,” Psa 143:10.
“The fruit of the Spirit is … goodness,” Gal 5:22.

How full of promise are these manifestations of Deity. We were created and redeemed that we might possess and exhibit such Divine goodness.

Run your eyes over the hundreds of references where “goodness” is related to the Christian and you will be deeply impressed with your high and holy calling.


“He that doeth good is of God,” 3 John 2.
“Filleth the hungry soul with goodness,” Psa 107:9.
“With good will doing service,” Eph 6:7, 1 Pet 2:12.
”Be ye followers of that which is good,” 1 Pet 3:13, Rom 13:3.
“I will rejoice over them that do good,” Jer 32:14.
“Do good to them that hate you,” Matt 5:44.
“Good works,” “good conversation,” Heb 10:26, 13-18, James 3:13.
“Make you perfect in every good work,” Heb 13:21.
“He which begun a good work in you,” Phil 1:6.
“I follow the thing that is good,” Psa 38:20, 37:3.

How indestructibly the good grows and propagates itself even among the weedy entanglements of evil. Mysteriously does a holy of holies build itself into visibility in the mysterious deep. Can we say that ours is the brand of imparted Divine goodness propagating itself into a world of evil if the Lord Jesus Christ has full control of our life? Then goodness becomes both a possession and an expression.

The Grace of Gratitude!

While the words “grateful” or “gratitude” are no where to be found in the Bible, all they represent saturate Its sacred pages. If we gather together the hundreds of references dealing with “thanks,” “thanksgiving,” and “praise,” all of which are related to “gratitude,” we will have a formidable array of evidence that the Christian should be a thankful person.

As to the Promises connected with praise to and adoration of God for all He is and does, the same are as varied as they are numerous.

The oldest idea in America is the national institution known as Thanksgiving Day, the origin of which goes back to the three-day festival held at Plymouth Settlement in October 1621. This occasion was so arranged that the people might “after a special manner rejoice together” when their harvesting was ended.

Those Mayflower pilgrims, eager to leave England in quest of liberty to worship God as they pleased, expressed their attitude to Him as soon as they reached Cape Cod. William Bradford, who became the first governor of the Colony, left this unadorned yet eloquent record of their gratitude.

“Being thus arrived in a good harbour and brought safe to land, they fell upon their knees and blessed the God of Heaven, who had brought them over the vast and furious ocean, and delivered them from all the perils of miseries thereof, again to set their feet on the firm and stable Earth, their proper element.”

The Grace of Gratitude!

Another great Thanksgiving was declared in July 1630 when 14 vessels arrived with 840 additional colonists. Other Thanksgivings followed and by 1680 the custom became annual.

In 1777 the Congress set apart December 18 as a solemn day of thanksgiving and praise. George Washington issued “Thanksgiving proclamations,” but it was left for President Lincoln to establish the occasion as a national holiday. This he did, and in 1864 the last Thursday in November was set as the date when millions of Americans pause to pray.

How can we thank Thee, Lord, for all Thy gifts?
For the rich bounty of Thy lavish Hand?
How can mere words give praise for stars and dawns?
For all Thy wonders poured on sea or land?

The Grace of Gratitude!

A study of all the Bible has to say about thanks and praise to God for all His goodness, shows that as Christians we should make every day, and not merely one day a year, our Thanksgiving Day.

Every moment of every day should be used to praise God from Whom all blessings flow. We honor Him more when we living in Thanksgiving Street all the time than by visiting once a year. First of all, we note that thanksgiving is commanded by God. But we bless Him twice over when we do, so on our own initiative out of souls that are truly grateful.

“Offer unto God thanksgiving, and pay thy vows unto the Most High,” Psa 50:14.
“What shall I render unto the Lord for all His benefits toward me?” Psa 116:12-14.
“In every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God,” Phil 4:6.

Thought for the Day!

Gun registration didn’t stop the terrorist from using box cutters!!!

In Our Thanksgiving We Emulate the Example of Angelic and Heavenly Hosts Who Praise and Thank the Lord for All His Wondrous Works

“Those living creatures give glory and honour and thanks to Him that sat on the throne,” Rev 4:9.
“All the angels ... saying amen, blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving ... be unto our God,” Rev 7:11, 12:11, 15:17.
“They sang a new song saying, Thou art worthy,” Rev 5:9.

Tuesday, December 11, 2001

We Follow the Lord Jesus Christ’s Example When We Extol God For All the Good Gifts He Bestows Upon Us

“I thank Thee, O Father, Lord of Heaven and Earth,” Matt 11:25.
“He took the cup and gave thanks,” Matt 26:27.
“Jesus took the loaves when He had given thanks,” John 6:11.
“Father, I thank Thee that Thou hast heard Me,” John 11:41.

We should live in the spirit of praise because of its beneficial effect upon God, ourselves, and others.

“It is a good thing to give thanks unto God,” Psa 92:1-3.
“I will praise the Name of God ... magnify Him with thanksgiving,” Psa 69:30.
“Therefore will I give thanks unto Thee, O Lord, among the nations,” Psa 18:24, 30:12.

Our Praise Should be Associated With Our Prayers, For Prayers and Praises Go Together

“Begin the thanksgiving in prayer,” Neh 11:17.
“Praise and supplication with thanksgiving,” Phil 4:6.
“Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving,” Col 4:2.
“Intercessions and giving of thanks,” 1 Tim 2:1, 2 Tim 1:3, Philemon 4.
“Sacrifice of praise ... giving thanks in His Name,” Heb 13:15, Psa 92:1.
“I will offer to Thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving,” Psa 116:17.

We Are Exhorted to be Thankful For All Things, That is, For the Unwelcome, as Well as the Welcome Experiences of Life

“In everything ... give thanks to God,” 2 Cor 9:11, 1 Thes 5:18.
“Giving thanks always for all things,” Eph 5:20, 1:16, 1 Thes 1:2.

Gratitude must be expressed for the common mercies of life, which are as numerous as the stars of Heaven, air to breathe, sunshine to enjoy, sleep at night, use of faculties, comfort of home, the gift of loved ones, food and raiment, work, and money to spend.

Too often these benefits are so lightly valued.

“Oh That Men Would Praise the Lord for His Goodness,” Psalm 107:8

“Meats received with thanksgiving,” 1 Tim 4:3, 4, 5; 6:17.
“When thou hast eaten and thou art full, then thou shalt bless the Lord thy God,” Deut 8:10-11.
“He took bread and gave thanks to God,” Acts 27:35.
“He that eateth ... giveth thanks,” Rom 14:6, 7.

For the deep joys of home, for warmth and cheer,
For golden harvests gleaned and safely stored,
For music, beauty, peace, and life itself,
How can Thy Name be worthily adored?

Reflecting upon the manifold “spiritual” mercies of God, what else can we do but adore Him? Do not the innumerable blessings of Grace inspire us to honor Him with our hope and our trust? And make Him the Object of praise and adoration and quicken us to walk worthily before Him in the land of the living and increase our delight in His service?

“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits,” Psa 103:1-5.

Because of the explicit spiritual nature of these benefits, our thanks ascend to God through the Lord Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit.

“Offer unto God thanksgiving,” Psa 50:14.
“I thank Christ Jesus our Lord,” 1 Tim 1:12.
“I thank my God through Jesus Christ,” Rom 1:8, Col 3:17, Heb 13:15.
“Giving thanks unto God ... in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ,” Eph 5:20.

Enumerating a Few of the Spiritual Mercies Promised and Provided and Which Merit Continual Praise We Have:

  1. The remembrance of Divine holiness.
    ”Giving thanks at the remembrance of His holiness,” Psa 30:4, 97:12.
  2. The goodness and mercy of God.
    ”O give thanks unto the Lord, for His mercy,” Psa 106:1, 107:1, 136:1-13.
  3. The effectual working of the Word of God.
    ”Also thanks to God. For the Word of God, which effectually worketh,” 1 Thes 2:13.
  4. The Gift of His Beloved Son.
    ”Thanks be unto God for His Unspeakable Gift,” 2 Cor 9:15.
  5. The provision of deliverance from sin.
    ”Who shall deliver me ... I thank God through Jesus Christ,” Rom 7:23-25.

“Now thanks be unto God which always causes us to triumph in Christ,” 1 Cor 15:57.

Wednesday, December 12, 2001

Gratitude Makes All Things Doubly Beneficial

“Every creation of God is good, if it be received with thanksgiving,” 1 Tim 4:4.

Gratitude produces contentment in all conditions and places a bridle on one’s own desires. It checks gloom, destroys envy, and returns with blessings on the head of the thankful one. We taste the sweetness of any Divine mercy twice over when we are sincerely grateful for it.

“Oh that men would praise the Lord for His goodness,” Psa 107:31.

With amazing regularity God meets the needs of all. Provisions are poured down but praises seldom rise. Men fail to think of what they own, and therefore forget to thank. The common ordinary blessings are received as a matter of course. Mercies, spiritual and material, come our way, but the Hand that provided them is forgotten.

God’s compassions fail not, and are new every morning and are of greater worth when, in receiving them, we instinctively and immediately say, “Thank you, Father.” Like an earthly parent, God too loves grateful children.

“I Will Declare What He Hath Done For My Soul,” Psalm 66:16

Think of what He has done for the real you – your soul!

  1. It was He who saw you lost and helpless.
  2. And in His Grace and mercy, love provided a way of deliverance.
  3. It was your sinful condition that brought the Lord Jesus Christ, our Saviour, from above to die on Calvary’s Cross.
  4. By “His blood, sweat, and tears” He secured a priceless redemption for your soul.
  5. But He not only saved your soul, but He made it safe forever.
  6. Day by day as you realize that the responsibility of your saved soul is upon His shoulders, He meets your every need.

I may not be able to reason and debate. I may have little skill in logic and apologetics. My words may be destitute of the orator’s passion and poetry and color. But at least I can say, “Come and you will see. Come and you will find out for yourself how good He is.”

“With Thanksgiving Let Your Requests be Made Known Unto God,” Philippians 4:6

Paul is found here presenting an interesting combination as he outlines the secret of the peace of God.

  1. As we pray, we must praise.
  2. Asking, we must adore.
  3. Requesting further favors, we must remember past provisions.
  4. Our supplications must be accompanied by songs.

Too often we approach the throne of Grace as beggars. Ours is the spirit of the prodigal, “Give me, give me.” We are so taken up with immediate cares, needs, and problems, that we do nothing but request.

Eager to take from God, we forget what He expects from us. Greedy we take all we can, but fail to satisfy God’s bountiful heart as it yearns for the gratitude of those He blesses.

Well, the next time we pray, let us remember to mix praises with our prayers.

“Giving of Thanks be Made For All Men,” 1 Timothy 2:1, 4:4

Certainly we have a lot to be thankful for in a democracy like our own, in which rules are intent upon men, “leading a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”

The statement “giving thanks be made for all men” is qualified by the next verse. When we pray for those who rule us, God moves their hearts and brings them to sympathize with the way of life which is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour.

While we could pray for cruel dictators and war lords who, as Christless as cruel, like terrorists who are bent on the destruction of peace, freedom, and godliness, we could not very well give thanks for them.

We can intercede for their salvation, for the Lord is able to save the most inhuman among these brutal rulers. But we surely cannot thank God for them as we do for our president and other leaders who are engaged in the overthrow of the terrorists.

If it was me, I would just let Bin Laden go to H...

“Neither Were Thankful,” Romans 1:21

Heathenism, with is absence of the clear knowledge of God, is destitute of thankfulness. The heathen have no songs of praise. We have multitudes around us who know not God. Or if they do profess a knowledge of Him, glorify Him not as God. And who, consequently, seldom pause to praise the Giver of all.

Such gratitude arises from the Spirit-filled life and expresses itself, in “Psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making melody” in the heart to the Lord.

However, the vast majority of Church-going people know little of this outburst of praise. Thanks are seldom expressed for food, raiment, health, and other common mercies without which they could not live. There is not that thanksgiving leading to thanksgivings, which ever results in a life of complete surrender to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Let us shun the company of the thankless.

”Thanks be Unto God for His Unspeakable Gift,” 2 Corinthians 9:11-15

God’s bounty in giving produces thanksgiving. Paul was a grateful soul. And therefore he was quick to appreciate the Grace bestowed upon him.

To his beloved converts in Thessalonica he wrote, “What thanks can we render to God again for you?” Paul never sent belated thanks. Gifts and favors were immediately recognized, as, of course, they should be by us all because there is no darker sin than ingratitude. May we also be found basking in God’s promised Grace because of our constant praise that ever glorifies Him.

“He That Eateth ... Giveth God Thanks,” Romans 14:6

In the chapter dealing as it does with the law of doubtful things, Paul has some pointed things to say about eating and drinking.

As we eat, we are to eat as unto the Lord. If gluttonous and over-indulgent at the table, we do not eat to the glory of God. Too many dig their graves with their teeth. They live to eat. As Christians we should eat to live.

Grace before meals however, appears to be the significance of Paul’s injunction. We fear that too many who profess to be the Lord’s are negligent about giving thanks for temporal mercies set before them. Food is consumed with never a thought for the Giver of all good things.

In some Christian homes there is the custom of reading the Word of God at the table before its provisions are taken advantage of. Surely the Lord loves to be the unseen Guest at such tables.

“Every creation of God is good and nothing to be refused, for it is set apart by the Word of God and prayer.”

Christmas 2001 – Don’t Take Christ Out of Christmas

What did Mary know?

Did Mary know that her Baby would walk on water?
Did Mary know that her Baby would heal the sick, give sight to the blind, and make the lame to walk?
Did Mary know that her Baby would die for the sins of the world?
Did Mary know that her Baby would go to the Cross and die for her?
Did Mary know that God the Father would say to her Baby, “This is my Beloved Son in whom I am well pleased. Hear ye Him?”
Did Mary know that it pleased God to bruise her Baby?
Did Mary know that the first words her Baby would speak would be “Sacrifice and offering Thou would not, but a body Thou hast prepared for Me.”

Why Call Ye Me Lord? Luke 6:46

Ye call Me Master – and obey Me not.
Ye call Me Light – and see Me not.
Ye call Me the Way – and walk Me not.
Ye call Me Life – and desire Me not.
Ye call Me wise – and follow Me not.
Ye call Me rich – and ask Me not.
Ye call Me eternal – and seek Me not.
Ye call Me gracious – and trust Me not.
Ye call Me noble – and serve Me not.
Ye call Me mighty – and honor Me not.
Ye call Me just – and fear Me not.
If I condemn you – blame Me not.

Thursday, December 13, 2001

“Were There Not Ten Cleansed? Where Are the Nine?”

It is true that man’s ingratitude to man makes countless thousands mourn. The grateful heart of the Lord Jesus Christ was stabbed by the ingratitude of those nine lepers He had healed. Therefore His heart-felt feelings. “Were there not ten cleansed? Where are the nine?”

“Lacked ye anything?” Luke 24:35. If there be constant praise and thanksgiving for what He daily bestows, doubt never lurks in the mind regarding the Lord’s ability to undertake for us.

Praise has a way of feeding faith. The promise is that those who seek Him and bless Him shall not want any good things. He knows all about our need. He remembers His promises. He is always at hand to undertake for us.

His love in times past, forbids me to think,
He will leave me at last in trouble to sink.
Each sweet Ebenezer I have in review,
Confirms His good pleasure, to help me quite through.

The Law of Growth

The most dedicated Christian cannot reach maturity in this life. He stretches forth for such a prize, which will be his when he awakes in his Lord’s presence.

Constant, unretarded spiritual growth should characterize those who are “saved by Grace.” They are never static. If not following on to know the Lord Jesus Christ in a richer measure, then they are falling back into the “beggarly elements” of this world.

The Lord has not only promised Grace, but He has promised “growth in Grace.”

“Grow in Grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.”

“Thou Shall See Greater Things Than These,” John 1:50

Here we have the Promise of an ever-expanding experience of God’s power. No matter how great the things we have seen, greater manifestations of Divine provision are ahead. Greater heights of fellowship, and deeper depths of experience await us. “The best is yet to come.” He saves the best wine for the last.

More, and more, more and more, still there is more to follow.

The Promises Related to Spiritual Growth Reveal Both its Necessity and Nature

How blessed we are, if through God the Holy Spirit, we are growing up into the full stature of the Lord Jesus Christ.

“Bless the lads ... let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the Earth,” Gen 48:16.

The promise given by Jacob to Joseph concerning the progeny of his two sons can be used spiritually. Are there, as a part of our growth, others through us who have come to know our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ?

“Thou hast planted them. They grow, go on, Jer 12:2.
“He shall grow up before Him as a Tender Plant,” Isa 53:2, Zech 6:12.
“Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots,” Isa 11:1.
“He shall grow as the lily … grow as the vine,” Hosea 14:5, 7.
“Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow,” Matt 6:28-34.
“Growth unto an holy temple in the Lord,” Eph 2:21.
“Desire the sincere milk of the Word, that ye may grow thereby,” 1 Pet 2:2.

“Grow in Grace and in the Knowledge of Our Lord,” 2 Peter 3:18

“Your faith groweth exceedingly,” 2 Thes 1:3.

“Grow up into Him in all things,” Eph 4:13.

Are we growing Christians?
As the days and the years go by, do we find ourselves with a deeper love for the Lord Jesus Christ?
Do we have an ever-increasing desire to live the Christian way of life?
Do we have a greater passion for the souls of others?
Do we have a clearer separation from the entanglements of this world?

All promised Grace and power are at our disposal for the increase of growth and spirituality and are ever pleasing to the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Offer of Divine Guidance

“In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths,” Prov 3:6

We are not only privileged to have God as our “Guard,” but also as our “Guide.” He offers us not only “defense,” but “direction.” The Bible presents us with a few gracious Promises of guidance, which if we will appropriate, will result in a life lived in the will and the way of the Lord.

He promises us paternal instructions, correction, counsel, and guidance. The whole trend of Scripture is that God is beforehand with every need of man and He is with him to lead him to the place and provision of His own appointing.

Allied to the Promises concerning our heavenly Guides and the aspects of Their guidance, are similar ones connected with Divine leading and direction. Taken together, all of these Promises present indisputable evidence of the infallibility of the Guide and of His unerring Escort. With the Bible as our Guide Book, then let us seek to understand the information it presents to travelers from the city of destruction to the Celestial City.

Friday, December 14, 2001

“It is Not in Man That Walketh to Direct His Steps,” Jeremiah 10:23

The fulfillment of our promised direction is dependent upon our acknowledgement of God in every phase of life. First of all, there must be the frank confession that we are utterly unable to guide and direct our steps. Left to ourselves, we swerve from the King’s highway and go astray.

“A man’s heart deviseth his way, but the Lord directeth his steps,” Prov 16:9.
“I will direct his ways,” Isa 45:13.

How necessary it is to trust the Guide with the greatest simplicity, speaking to Him frankly about present matters and future decisions. And then joyfully following Him wherever He may lead. If this is our unvarying attitude than we shall prove that, “the path of the just is a shining light,” Prov 4:18. See also Psa 5:3, 1 Thess 3:11, 2 Thess 3:8.

“God Led Them Not Through the Land of the Philistines, Although That Was Near, but God Led the People About, Through the Wilderness of the Red Sea,” Exodus 13:17-18, Deuteronomy 32:10

There may be occasions when, because of our finite understanding, Divine leading seems contradictory to reason. The Israelites thought it strange that the roundabout route was the quickest way to reach the Promised Land. Had Israel tried to go through the land of the Philistines as an unarmed people, they would have been completely discouraged. So, it was quicker to skip the short cut and take the long way around.

The Heavenly Guide knows best, He always does.

Divinely chosen journeys are not always straight ones. Israel had to learn that the longest was the quickest and the surest way there. God is never very partial to short cuts. As our Guide, He refuses to be hurried. It may have be that you have prayed for guidance in a certain manner, and although you are confident that God is guiding you and governing, somehow you feel that with such a Guide you should have been at your destination before this. But we are blind and we cannot see the danger spots which are making God’s detours necessary. We do not know the way, but if we know and trust the Guide, He will see to the fulfillment of His plan for our life. Psa 78:52, 72.

“The Lord Alone Did Lead Them,” Deuteronomy 32:12, Nehemiah 9:19

“He it is that goeth before thee,” Deuteronomy 31:1-8.

Here we have the clear expression of the ideal of “Divine leadership.”

But rest and guidance are also involved in such a gracious Promise. In the cloud for covering and a fire to give light at night we have the further provision of “shelter and illumination.”

The Lord does not leave His people to gloom and distress. He is a light to them amid darkness.

“Lead me, O Lord, in Thy righteousness because of mine enemies,” Psa 5:8, 23:2, 25:5, 70:20, 80:1, 106:9, 139:24.

Behold a virgin shall conceive and bear a Child.
Isaiah’s message of Emmanuel gentle and mild.

Born in a manger no room in the inn,
God my Saviour died for my sin.

He made Him to be sin, who knew no sin,
The plan of salvation for me did begin.

Born in Bethlehem, the smallest of towns,
God the Father with glory He did crown.

The Seed of a woman would bruise his head,
The Lord Jesus Christ died in my stead.

Not of works lest any man should boast,
The King of kings and the Lord of hosts.

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved,
The road to Heaven with His blood is paved.


God Has a Surprise for You!

Every morning that you get up God has a new surprise for you. God mercies are always novelties.

“God’s mercies are new every morning.”

The thought that God’s mercies are new is always new is a pleasing one, but that it is new every morning is wonderful. Most preachers run out of sermons and have to move to another Church.

But God has something new for us every morning.

Most preachers have to repeat themselves. But God, with the greatest of ease, sends to His people something new every morning. He does not repeat Himself. If He sends the same mercy, there is still something about it that makes it fresh.

God never gives us old mercy that is worn out. “His compassions are new every morning,” not some mornings, but every morning from January first to last of December.

Saturday, December 15, 2001

All Three Persons of the Trinity Are United in the Guiding of a Christian is Evidenced by the Fact That the Holy Spirit, as Well as the Father and the Son, is Promised to Guide us

“The Spirit of Truth ... He will guide you unto all Truth,” John 16:13.
“Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit,” Matt 4:1.
“Led by the Spirit of God,” Rom 8:14, Gal 5:18.

The Bible as a Torch or Light, guides the footsteps of the believer through the dark. And the guiding Spirit leads him into a clear understanding of many dark and hidden things, so that what cannot be comprehended by mere intellect, is apprehended by the Holy Spirit.

The Lord Jesus Christ promised the Holy Spirit as another infallible Guide. Acts 8:31.

“The Lord Shall Guide Thee Continually,” Isaiah 58:11.

“The meek will He guide in judgment,” Psa 25:9.
“I will guide thee with Mine eye,” Psa 32:8.
“The Lord guided them on every side,” 2 Chr 32:22, Ex 15:13.
“To guide our feet into the way of peace,” Luke 1:77.

The Bible contains certain definite principles which are invariable and unchanging. One of these principles is that when Divine guidance is in harmony with the trend of our circumstances and the revealed Truth of God, we may step out boldly and be confident that we are walking in the way of His will.

A correct guidance depends upon the ability and knowledge of the Guide. Let the above Promises assure you of the Lord’s ability to lead you right. The One who promises to direct your step continually is perfect.

With such a Guide, how can you err? And why should you be afraid of what is ahead?

Then He is patient. He knows how timid you are to step out after Him on some unknown road.

He is also powerful, which means that He is well able to deal with all the hellish and human forces endeavoring to impede your progress. He guards as He guides.

Is He not also perceptive? All the needs of the journey have been anticipated and bountifully provided for. Because He knows the end from the beginning, nothing can take Him by surprise.

There are no crises with Christ.

“By Springs of Water Shall He Guide Them,” Isaiah 49:10

While the Promise of this text is related to a preserved and restored Israel, John borrows some of the phrases to describe the bliss of the redeemed once the swelling tide of death has been crossed.

Guidance is to be ours until we see the Guide Himself face to face.

Over the present perilous and thorny path of life we have the unfailing direction and companionship of our unerring Leader. When we reach the end of the way, the same mighty Hand will still be upon us, translating us from the dusty lanes of Earth to the golden streets above.

But surely we are warranted in giving this Promise a present application. Our Precious Guide knows where all the sources of refreshment are and can lead us to them for the banishment of our thirst.

“I Will Guide Thee With Mine Eye,” Psalm 32:8

As it is common in the east to direct servants by signs either by hands or eyes, Psa 123:2, we have here a symbol of the pilgrim’s alertness for the Guide’s next move. Slaves would watch with great attention the will of their masters. The least wink, or movement of the eye, or motion of the fingers, though imperceptible to strangers would be sufficient to command service.

Are we as watchful to know our Lord’s slightest wish? Can it be that we fail to recognize His desire? May Grace be ours to be alive and quick to hear each whisper of His voice. As glad vassals of a Saviour’s throne, may our eyes be ever open to discern His will as He bids us to follow His steps.

In order to be guided by the Lord’s eyes you have to have your eyes on Him.

“Looking unto Jesus.”

The Hand that holds the ocean's depth can hold my small affairs.
The Hand that guides the universe can carry all my cares.

I am glad I cannot shape my way. I would rather trust His skill.
I am glad the ordering is not mine. I would rather have His will.

I do not know the future, and I wouldn’t if I might,
For faith is better far to me, than faulty human sight.

We walk by faith and not by sight.

“Thou Art the Guide of My Youth,” Jeremiah 3:4

Looking back over the past years many of us can see how the Lord ruled and overruled in our lives, even though we had no thought of Him. With the perfect perception we would expect such an infallible Guide to have, He looked way down the corridor of time and graciously prepared us for His service.

Thinking of all we have experienced, we find ourselves blessing the Mind that planned. Wayward and Godless though we were, unseen Eyes were watching and unseen Hands directing our steps.

And if this Promise is being read by someone who is young, strong, and free, may his or hers be the sweet consciousness that our heavenly Father offers to be his or her Guide.

“The Lord Saved ... and Guided Them on Every Side,” 2 Chronicles 32:22

Grace and guidance are related. To be saved means to be safe. Sinners who deliberately reject the salvation of the Lord Jesus Christ have no right to expect His guidance.

Sitting with a notebook and pencil and recording what may come into your mind, as a certain cult urges its followers to do, is no safe method of guidance. Tragedies have followed this unbiblical way of getting to know what to do.

First of all, there must be the basis of salvation before guidance can be asked, and given. God must get rid of our guilt before He can grant us any guidance we crave. Then once delivered, we are ready to be directed.

“My sheep hear My voice.”

“He Guided Them by the Skillfulness of His Hands,” Psalm 78:12

Wisdom and skill are both His. His Hand cannot possibly lead astray or lose a traveler. If we seek His guidance, we will receive it.

But He will not comfort our distrust or half trust of Him by showing us the chart of all of His purposes concerning us.

He will show us only into a way where, if we carefully and trustfully go forward, He will show us a still further way. Because of His skill as a Guide, it is safe to trust Him.

Where He will lead, I will follow,
My trust in Him repose.
In every hour with perfect peace,
I will sing, He knows, He knows.

The Meaning of Christmas

“Mine eyes have seen Thy Salvation,” Luke 2:30.

Simeon came into the temple and saw there a little Baby and recognized in that newborn Child, “the Promised Savior” and he took that “Savior” into his arms and said, “Mine eyes have seen …” What?

“Mine eyes have seen Thy Salvation. He saw God’s salvation; not the Worker of salvation only, but the Salvation itself. So, wherever we see the Lord Jesus Christ, we see God’s salvation.

Whether in Bethlehem’s manger or on the Cross, or on the throne of glory from which “He will judge the living and the dead.”

Wherever we see Him, we see “God’s Salvation.”

Sunday, December 16, 2001

“Commit Thy Way Unto the Lord; Trust Also in Him and He Shall Bring it to Pass,” Psalm 37:5

“Him shall He teach in the way that He shall choose,” Psa 25:12, 107:7.

If we are bent on going His way and not our own, life becomes delightfully relaxed and peaceful. If on the journey we encounter any experience which appears as accidents impeding our progress, we rest in the fact that there are no unfortunate occurrences in the Divine plan and purpose.

“He Chose Our Inheritance For Us,” Psa 47:4, Isa 42:5

“I will bring the blind by a way they know not of,” Isa 42:16

Are you not amazed by the boundless condescension of the Lord?

Blind men cannot find a way which they do not know. Even after they have found a way after traversing it many times, they still pick their step carefully with the aid of their white stick or a seeing-eye dog.

By nature we are blind to God’s ways, but He promises Himself as a Guide of the blind. Our eyes are veiled to the future, but nothing is hid from Him in whom we trust. The unknown is known to Him.

“For the Lord Your God is He That Goeth With You,” Deuteronomy 20:4, Mark 16:7

God is not only going on before, but with us – our Companion as well as our Guide. If we are oppressed by fearful apprehensions of an uncertain future, then we can bid our fears depart, for He goes before us. Deut 31:8.

Then as we go, He is with us as our august Ally, to strengthen us for the warfare of faith.

“Thou Shalt Guide Me With Thy Counsel and Afterward Receive Me to Glory,” Psalm 73:24

“He will be our Guide even over death,” Psa 48:14.

When we seek the counsel of the infallible God in preference to our own judgment or advice from friends, we have the assurance that as the great JEHOVAH, He will direct our steps each day, and all the days, until we reach the end of our days.

We have His promise that He will lead us, and never leave us, right up to the time when we meet Him at Heaven’s gate.

The original language of Scripture has a sweet thought when it says, “even over death,” not unto death. That is, over death, into resurrection. He will never let go of our hand even when we reach Heaven because even there we shall have Him as our blessed Guide forever.

His guidance then means not only life security, but eternal security. When ultimately at home with the Lord, memory purified and perfected will intensify eternal gratitude as we remember “all the way in which the Lord our God led us,” Deut 8:2.

The Shadow of His Hand!

Among the almost 1,500 references to hands in Scripture, there are a few relating to God which carry with them Promises of provision and protection.

Throughout Scripture hands are represented in very many expressive actions and customs. The right hand was the place of honor and power.

“Upon thy right hand did sit the queen,” Psa 45:9, 1 Kings 2:19.
“The Lord said unto my Lord, sit Thou at My right hand,” Psa 110:1.
“The right hand of power,” Mark 14:62.
“Thou that saveth by the right hand,” Psa 27:1, Ex 15:6.

The Right Hand Was Illustrative of Protection and Support

“Thou hast holden me by Thy right hand,” Psa 73:23, Isa 41:13.
“He is at my right hand. I shall not be moved,” Psa 16:8, 109:31, 110:5.

Men smote the Lord with the palm of their hands, but He in love and mercy assures us that He “has graven our names upon the palms of His hands,” Isa 49:16, Matt 26:67.

If we want to remember something, we tie a piece of string around our finger. Our names are “graven,” never to be effaced. On His hands carries the Promise of His everlasting remembrance of us.

Because in redemption and creation we are “the work of Thy hand,” Isa 64:8.

We are privileged to have the hiding shadow of that hand. Isa 49:2.

“My times are in Thy hands,” Psa 31:15.What a rich Promise this is the psalmist gives us.

“My Times Are in Thy Hand,” Psalm 31:15

All events are under Divine control. Nothing is left to chance. As Christians we do not shape our lives by any star, as astrologists would have us to do. The One who made the stars, the Lord Jesus Christ, rules and overrules in the affairs of our lives. In infinite wisdom and love He appoints all that should come our way.

By His power he causes “all things to work together for good,” whether the times be good or bad.

“My purpose shall stand and I will do all My pleasure.”

His purpose cannot be frustrated and His Promises and purposes cannot fail.

“All His Saints Are in His Hand,” Deuteronomy 33:3

This further Promise does not say, “some” of His saints. The most obedient and the holiest are in His hand. “But all His saints.”

There is a sense in which every Christian is a saint. Even the carnal Christians at Corinth were called saints. “Saint” means to be set apart unto God for all eternity.

All believers are saints. All believers are in His hand of mercy, provision, and protection. All in His hand are His property to be protected and provided for by Him.

And because His hand is large enough to hold all, it is strong enough to preserve all. His is the hand of “a living God,” Heb 10:31.

“Neither Shall Any Man Pluck Them Out of My Hand,” John 10:28

“No man is able to pluck them out of My Father’s hand,” John 10:29.

Do we not have here the Promise of double eternal security?

Truly the Christian is safe because “of the double grip” the Lord Jesus Christ spoke about. His statement is explicit – no man, nothing – which implies even the believer himself cannot wriggle out of the mighty hands of God the Father and God the Son.

With our hands in these wonderful hands of Deity we are forever safe and secure.

The night is dark, I cannot see.
But He is near, He walks with me.
It is God who holds my hand.

I cannot know why winds so wild,
So fierce shall blow, but I am His child.
It is God who holds my hand.

He knows the path that I must tread,
He leads me on, I know no dread.
It is God who holds my hand.

Monday, December 17, 2001

Thought for the Day!

The double grip of “Divine eternal security.”

“I give unto them eternal life and no one can pluck them out of My hand, and no one can pluck them out of My Father’s hand,” John 10:28-29.

“My hand and My Father’s hand.”

The Pursuit of Happiness!

Although “happy,” “joy,” and “rejoice” are distinctive terms each carrying different original meanings, yet they are used to express the God-created emotion of pleasure, felicity, and bliss.

“Happy” is a word equivalent to “blessed.”

When the Lord Jesus Christ said “blessed,” Matt 5:3-11, He used the same word given as “happy,” John 13:17. Therefore, in this classification of Promises, we are bunching together several passages where happiness, joy, and rejoicing are used, leaving the verses to tell out their own message.

“Happy art thou...who is like unto thee, O people saved by the Lord,” Deut 33:29, Psa 144:15.
“Happy is the man whom God correcteth,” Job 5:17.
“Whosoever trusteth in the Lord, happy is he,” Prov 16:20, 28:14.
“These things, happy are ye if you do them,” John 15:17.
“Happy is he that condemneth not himself,” Rom 14:22.

“If Ye Suffer For Righteousness Sake...If Ye be Reproached, Happy Are You,” 1 Peter 3:14, 4:14

“Behold we count them happy which endure,” James 5:11.

Such an emotion is not temperamental or intermittent, but deep and constant. The happiness which the Bible enjoins is begotten of faith and obedience and is therefore not a mere effervescent feeling, but part of the fruit of the Spirit. Gal 5:22-23.

In contrast, the so-called happiness of the unsaved is short, vain, and uncertain. Job 20:5, Luke 12:20, Ecc 2:1, 7:8.

As all beatitudes of the Lord Jesus Christ are Promises, read “happy” for “blessed” and notice some of the profound results of this Heaven-born bliss. The word “blessed” is plural in the original language, i.e., “happinesses.”

Among the 500 or so Passages Dealing With Joy and Rejoice, There are Several Precious Promises for the Christian to Observe and Obtain

We cannot study all of these joy verses without realizing that the Lord expects His people to be a contented, satisfied, and happy company.

“God given to a,” Ecc 2:26, Psa 4:7.
“The joy of the Lord is your strength,” Neh 8:10.
“The voice of rejoicing and salvation is in the tabernacles of the righteous,” Psa 118:15.
“They that sow in tears shall reap in joy,” Psa 126:5.
“Ye shall go out with joy,” Isa 55:12, 61:7, 10, 11.
“Rejoice in the hope of the glory of God,” Rom 5:2, Isa 61:10, Psa 97:12.
“Ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory,” 1 Pet 1:8.
“My spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour,” Luke 1:47, 10:21.
“My joy...your joy might be full,” John 15:11.

“Rejoice and Again I Say Rejoice”

God expects His children to be joyful, because He Himself is described as the One capable of happiness.

“He will rejoice over thee with joy,” Zephaniah 3:17. Fullest gladness springs from Grace and it is an evidence in the world of that triumph over trial and adversity which the Lord makes possible.

“As sorrowful yet always rejoicing,” 2 Cor 6:10, 1 Thes 5:16.

All the resources of God are unreservedly poured out upon us, so what else can we do but “rejoice in the Lord always,” Phil 4:4. Such heavenly elation enables us to live our common life in an uncommon way.

“Rejoice in the Lord Alway! And Again I Say Rejoice,” Philippians 4:4

Often we find this a very difficult precept to be kept, especially sometimes when we are bewildered through the experiences that God permits.

The dispersions of providence are somewhat perplexing. So much so, that we are ready to cry out “all things are against us.” But God does not call upon us to rejoice in frames or feelings, but in Himself.

In weakness we can rejoice in His almightiness. Omnipotence is always on our side.

In darkness we can rejoice in His wisdom. He knows the path we take and His methods of purifying and instructing us are always well ordered and sure. Never once is He betrayed into a false step.

In the trials of life we can rejoice in His love for us. He cares for us and therefore we can rest on His faithful Promises.

“Rejoice and Again I Say Rejoice”

Be glad in the Lord and rejoice,
All ye that are upright in heart.
And ye that have made Him your choice,
Bid sadness and sorrow depart.

Tuesday, December 18, 2001

The Beauty of Holiness

We have several different words which all imply the same truth – our conformity to the Divine image. Holiness, cleanliness, godliness, sanctification, and separation are all terms which, though they may imply various shades of meaning, can all be grouped together.

The over all Truth is that God has not only promised us holiness of life, but has made every provision for it. Dealing with the Promises of God, we must bear in mind the ultimate purpose of these Promises is the separation of our lives from anything unworthy of our profession.

“Having these Promises...let us cleanse ourselves,” 2 Cor 7:1.

Because of God’s Holiness He Pledges the Fulfillment of His Promises

“Once have I sworn by My holiness that I will not lie unto David,” Psa 89:35, Amos 4:2.

As there are some 1,500 verses taken up with separation, godliness, cleanliness, holiness, and sanctification, they take up a volume in themselves. We will indicate some of the key passages the Bible uses in connection with the Christian’s sanctity of life.

The basis of the pronouncements and promises of “holiness” is the holiness of God Himself – what He is, what He desires His people to be.

“Ye shall be holy for I, the Lord your God, am holy,” Lev 19:2, 1 Pet 1:15-16.
“Who is like unto Thee, O Lord...glorious in holiness,” Ex 15:11, Psa 22:3.
“God hath spoken in His holiness,” Psa 60:6, 145:7, Isa 57:15.
“Be ye imitators of God as dear children,” Eph 5:1.

That Such Likeness to the Divine Character is Absolutely Essential Can be Gathered From Solemn Warnings Like This

“No unclean person...hath any inheritance,” Eph 5:5.
“Holiness without which no man shall see the Lord,” Heb 12:14.

What holiness is this without which we cannot see the Lord?

The Lord Jesus Christ was made unto us not only righteousness, but sanctification. And without this provision, no man can see the Lord. Righteousness is that which meets a just claim and the Lord Jesus Christ satisfied every righteous claim the law had upon us.

But God is a loving and gracious Father, as well as a righteous Judge, and He needed to be satisfied. Nothing but a perfect response to the claims of His infinite pure and holy nature could satisfy Him.

The Lord Jesus Christ as the Perfect Man, God’s Ideal, actually accomplished and was so made unto us, became on our behalf, holiness. We cannot provide what God commands. By faith we accept the promised and provided holiness in the Lord Jesus Christ.

“Put on Thy Beautiful Holiness,” Isaiah 52:1

Included in the Christian’s wardrobe are the garments which he must wear during his earthly pilgrimage and in which he must appear before the Holy One – the vestures of eternity.

Among Bible saints adorned in such garments are Barnabas, of whom it is said, “He was a good man and full of the Holy Spirit and faith,” Acts 11:24. Being filled with the Spirit is the secret of the Christ-like character.

Eph 5:18, Gal 5:22-23. The nine-fold fruit of the Spirit was reduced in one known as the “Son of consolation.”

“Worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness,” Psa 29:2.
“Partakers of His holiness,” 1 Cor 9:13.
“We should be holy and without blame,” Eph 1:4, Isa 35:8.

“God Hath Called Us With a Holy Calling,” 2 Timothy 1:8-9

“Unblameable in holiness,” 1 Thes 3:13, 2 Pet 3:11, Col 1:22.
“Ye have your fruit unto holiness,” Rom 6:22, Luke 1:74, 75.

Sanctification has a two-fold implication when used of Christians. It is a separation from all known sin and a separation unto God for service.

The Lord Jesus Christ sanctified Himself, but only setting Himself apart for God’s purpose. As the One, holy, harmless, separate from sinners, He had no sin from which to be separated.

“This is the Will of God, Even Your Sanctification,” 1 Thessalonians 1:3, 4

“Chosen you to salvation through sanctification,” 2 Thes 2:13.
“Sanctification through the Spirit,” 1 Pet 1:2, Rom 15:16.
“Sanctification through the Truth,” John 17:19, Jude 1.
“The very God of peace sanctify you wholly,” 1 Thes 5:23, Heb 2:11.

Are we separated from all that is of the flesh as we ought to be? One of the beautiful titles adorning “the Dome of the Rock” in Jerusalem bears the motto “He who clings to this world will lose the other.”

“Separate yourselves…touch nothing of theirs,” Num 16:21, 26.
“Wherefore come out from among them and be ye separate, saith the Lord and touch not the unclean thing and I will receive you,” 2 Cor 6:17-18.

David’s Host Wanted to Mingle With the Philistine’s Army, Which Was Decidedly Wrong

Therefore the question, “What do these Hebrews here?” 1 Sam 29:3.

Delivered from sin and the world at their conversion, it is wrong for any of God’s people to return to the beggarly elements of the world.

“Arise and depart. This is not your rest.”

It is dangerous to stray onto Satan’s ground and be found in the enemy’s ranks. What do they here? The presence of a Christian in the world is unnatural and traitorous. He should be found in full fellowship with the spiritually minded and unspotted from the world.

We have a good example in the present war with the terrorists – where an American joined the enemy.

Thought for the Day

  1. Jesus Christ is called, “the Son of God.”
  2. Believers are called, “the sons of God.”
  3. Christ is called “His Beloved Son.”
  4. Believers are called “beloved sons.”
  5. Christ is not “ashamed to call us brothers.”
  6. God is my “brother.”
  7. No Muslim can say that!

Wednesday, December 19, 2001

It is Incumbent Upon All Followers of God to Bear His Likeness and to be Godly in All Ways

The psalmist reminds us that they who make gods are like them. How true this should be of a Christian who has God as his Father.

“All that will live godly in Christ Jesus,” 2 Tim 3:12, Psalm 12:1.
“Exercise thyself rather unto godliness,” 1 Tim 6:6.
“Things that pertain unto life and godliness,” 2 Pet 1:3, 6, 7, 2:9.
“He hath set apart him that is godly for Himself,” Psa 4:3.

Purity of life is related to the ideal and the quest for holiness.

“He that hath clean hands and a pure heart,” Psa 24:4.
“Keep thyself pure,” 1 Tim 5:22, Heb 9:13.
“He that hath this hope in him purifieth himself,” 1 John 3:3.

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God,” Matt 5:8.

“What Manner of Persons Ought We to be in All Holy Manner of Life and Godliness,” 2 Peter 3:11

As Christians we are expected to be different than the ungodly. But are we? As the redeemed we have the promise and prospect of a New Heaven and a New Earth wherein dwelleth righteousness, but are we rejoicing in our destination?

Is the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ the Object of our desire and our hope?

Are we laying up treasures in Heaven?

Are we to be found in Him?

“We Should Walk in Newness of Life,” Romans 6:4

As a new creation in the Lord Jesus Christ we possess a new nature and we are brought under a new obligation. We are expected to keep new objects in view and be influenced by new principles.

No longer do we imitate the world or follow custom. We walk by new rules and follow the example of the Lord Jesus Christ. Daily we should prove the power and purity of our new life and pray, “Create in me a clean heart, O God,” Psa 51:10.

Cleanse me by the Word of God, and by the influence of God the Holy Spirit. The world’s greatest saints have been frank in their confession of personal sin.

Paul, at the end of an unexampled life of service and suffering, said, “I am the chief of sinners.”

“Go Unto the People and Sanctify Them,” Ex 19:10

“This is the will of God, even your sanctification,” 1 Thessalonians 4:3

Consecration, devotion, holiness, and sanctification spring from one Hebrew root word. When used of man, they imply a progressive inner detachment from evil.

Such an experience is not only God’s will, but His work in us and through us. Our daily life must not be alien to His will. Because of His own inherent holiness, He wills our personal holiness.

Are we becoming more God-like in this respect? By our separation from all uncleanness we recommend the Gospel of sanctification to those around us who find themselves miserably defeated by the forces of the old sin nature.

The Apron of Humility

“Be clothed with humility.” “Humble yourselves,” 1 Peter 5:5, 6.

The Greek word is a rare one. It means “tie yourselves up in humility.” Humility is to be gathered about you like a cloak and tied up so that the wind will not blow it back, nor the rain beat inside of it.

But there is a still further and more delicate shade of meaning in the word. There was a peculiar kind of cape well known by a name taken from this verb. We might call it “tie up.” This kind of cape was worn by slaves...and no others. It was a badge of servitude. Thus Peter bids them all to gird themselves for one another in a slave's “tie up” of humility. None are to be master in the body of Christ. The humility is to be the very first thing noticed about them – their outward mark and sign.

Wear the overall of humility in serving one another. Then when Peter urges us to “humble ourselves,” it is not merely as submission, bearing of the strokes which please God to let fall upon them, but it was to be shown in the bearing toward one another.

“And the mighty hand of God” is not to be regarded as that which is chastening them, but as the protecting shelter which they are humble to seek.

Thursday, December 20, 2001

“I Am Meek and Lowly in Heart,” Matthew 11:29

The most outstanding personification of “humility” the world has ever seen is that of our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, Who without any assumption whatever, could say of Himself, “I am meek and lowly in heart,” Matt 11:29.

The Lord Jesus Christ lived what He preached and commanded of others. He was a stainless peace of humility and He urged His own to accept this virtue from Him. In all His ways He “rebuked the pride of life” because pride is a sin God abominates.

His life while here as well as birth,
Was but a check to pomp and mirth.
And all man’s greatness you may see,
Condemned by His humility.

Before the Lord Jesus Christ Was Born, God the Father Promised Him Exaltation for the Lowliness He Was to Experience...

...A promise which the apostle Paul records

“Thou hast made Him a little lower than the angels and hast crowned Him with glory and honor,” Psa 8:5, Heb 2:6.
“He humbled Himself...wherefore God hath highly exalted Him,” Phil 2:7-11.

A good Bible study can be made when you elaborate on the clarity in the Bible concerning the humility of the Lord Jesus Christ.

True Humility

“In taking upon Himself our nature,” Phil 2:7, Heb 2:16.
“In His birth and obedience to parents,” Luke 2:4-7, 51.
“In His station in life,” Matt 13:15, John 9:29, 13:14-15.
“In His voluntary poverty,” Luke 9:58, 2 Cor 8:9, Mark 6:2, John 9:29.
“In His submission to ordinances,” Matt 3:13-15.
“In His willing servitude,” Matt 20:28, Luke 22:27, John 13:5, Phil 2:7.
“In His identification with our infirmities,” Heb 4:15, 5:7.
“In His association with the despised,” Matt 9:10-11, Luke 15:1-2.
“In His refusal of worldly honors,” John 5:41, Zech 9:9.
“In His obedience to His Father,” John 6:38, Heb 10:9.
“In His exposure to suffering, reproach, and death,” Isa 53:6, 7, Psa 22:6, 69:9, Matt 26:37-39, John 10:15, 17, 18, Heb 12:2, Phil 2:8.

Is it any wonder…

The Best of men...
That ever wore Earth about Him, was a suffered,
A soft, meek, patient, humble, tranquil spirit,
The first true Gentleman that ever breathed.

Paul, Who Lived Near to the Heart of the Humble One Came to Reflect on the Lord Jesus Christ’s Humility

Like Him, the apostle Paul “lay in the dust life’s glory dead.”

“Serving the Lord with all humility of mind,” Acts 20:19.
“I am the least of the apostles,” 1 Cor 15:9.
“Less than the least of all saints,” Eph 3:8.
“Not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think,” Rom 12:3.
“Though I be nothing,” 2 Cor 12:11.

Do not the above confessions give us Paul’s estimation of himself? The more he knew of himself and the Lord Jesus Christ, the more Paul humbled himself.

This is the apostle who counsels to imitate the Lord’s example, and his own. “Let this mind be in you which was also in the Lord Jesus Christ,” Phil 2:5.

The Promise is Ours – the Lower We be Before the Lord, the Happier and the Holier We Will be

Man’s pride and misery is that “he must be something.” But the Christian is willing to become nothing that the Lord Jesus Christ might be all in all.

Apart from the Lord Jesus Christ we are less than nothing. If we continue empty, He will fill us. Let us beware of thinking too highly of ourselves or fancying that we deserve more then we receive, either from the Lord or men.

Humble, we are satisfied. Helpless, we are strong. Coming to ourselves there are numerous Promises and precepts connected with humility to be observed. “True humility, the highest virtue, mother of them all.” “Humility is the foundation of all virtues.” Life is a long lesson in humility.

“What doth the Lord require of walk humbly with thy God,” Micah 6:8.

“Walk Humbly Before Thy God,” Micah 6:8

God has no respect toward them that are proud, but condescends to walk with the humble. His Grace humbles us. And it is only as we have true humbleness of mind that we can be happy and content.

Of ourselves we have nothing to be proud of or to boast of. The more we discover of the workings of our old sin nature, the more our self-abasement. All that we can admire and boast of is the loving mercy and infinite compassion of the Lord Jesus Christ in saving each vile, unworthy sinner.

As to the many Promises connected with humility, let your mind dwell on these aspects. Humility leads to riches, honor, and life.

“By humility…are riches, honor, and life,” Prov 22:4.
“Before honor is humility,” Prov 18:12.
“Honor shall uphold the humble in spirit,” Prov 29:23.

More results of being humble to follow.

Thought for the Day!

There are only two classes of people in this world – saints and sinners! If you are not a saint, you are a sinner!

But, the Lord Jesus Christ came to seek and save sinners!

Merry Christmas! Don’t take Christ out of Christ...mas!

Friday, December 21, 2001

The Results of Humility

It brings the favor of God.

“Yet hath He respect unto the lowly,” Psa 138:6, 147:6.
“He forgeth not the cry of the humble,” Psa 9:12, 22:26, 25:9.
“To revive the spirit of the humble,” Isa 57:15, 66:2, 29:10.
“He shall save the humble person,” Job 22:29, Isa 61:6.
“He that humbleth himself shall be exalted,” Luke 14:11, 18:14, James 4:10.
“The humble shall hear thereof and be glad,” Psa 34:2, 37:11.
“Lord, Thou hast heard the desire of the humble,” Psa 10:17.
“He forgeth not the cry of the humble,” Psa 9:12, 18.

Do not these gracious Promises remind us that humble, grateful souls may have anything from the Lord? Because of His great love for us and delight in us, He will never despise nor condemn our petitions, if lowliness of mind is ours.

Humility Leads to Increasing Grace and Blessedness

“Blessed are the pour in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven,” Matt 5:3.
“Better it is to be of a humble spirit with the lowly,” Prov 16:19.
“He will beautify the meek with salvation,” Psa 149:4.
“He giveth Grace unto the lowly,” Prov 3:34, James 4:6.

Humble souls seek Grace and secure it. When we humble ourselves because of our sins against humility, the Lord enriches us with His promised Grace.

Humble souls lie in the valleys where streams of Grace are flowing and hence drink of them. Humble souls are grateful for Grace and give the Lord the glory of it, and hence it is consistent with His honor to give it to them.

Humility is the altar on which God wishes us to offer Him sacrifices. It is upon this altar of humility that we offer Him praises continually.

Humility is the Garment Saints Should Wear

“Put on therefore...humbleness of mind,” Col 3:12.
“Walk...with all lowliness and meekness,” Eph 4:1, 2, Luke 14:10.
“Be clothed with humility,” 1 Pet 5:5, 6, John 13:14.

Here are some verses tantamount to Promises.

We stoop to conquer.
Humility leads to honor.
Meekness means spiritual might.
The lowly are lifted up.

Once we cherish right views of our own littleness, unworthiness, insignificance, and vileness apart from the Grace of God, and then go on to possess the meek and quiet spirit of great price in the Lord’s sight, then we are in the position for Him to bless us.

Humility is the most beautiful garment for a justified sinner to wear, for the Lord has promised to dwell with the humble.

Humility is Grace Orientation

Lord from my proud mind remove,
The bane of self-admiring love.
Make me feel and own with shame,
I less and worse than nothing am.
The least of saints with compassion see,
The chief of sinners save in me.

A Guard Against False Humility

“Let no man beguile you or your reward in a voluntary humility...which things have a show of humility,” Col 2:18, 23.

Pride perceiving humility honorable often borroweth her cloak. Let us beware of false humility. Proud of being humble is surely the worst form of pride. This is what Charles Dickens satirized in his character Uriah Heap, who proudly confessed “We are so very humble.”

Nothing is more scandalous than a man that is proud of his humility.

If humble, next of thy humility beware,
And lest thou shalt grow proud of such a Grace,
Have care.

Saturday, December 22, 2001


Gentleness is derived from the same root as humility.

“Thy gentleness hath made me great,” Psa 18:35.

In these days of military might, men think it strange that greatness should spring from gentleness. But such meekness is not weakness. The most gentle are the truly great.

“The fruit of the Spirit is...gentleness,” Gal 5:22-23.
“Put on, therefore, meekness,” Col 3:12-13.
“The good and the gentle,” 1 Pet 2:18, James 3:17, 2 Tim 2:24, 1 thes 2:7.
“I beseech you by the meekness of Christ,” 2 Cor 10:1.

In Sunday School we used to sing of the Lord as “gentle Jesus, meek and mild.” He assuredly was the personification of gentleness and meekness. Yet what strength of character was His.

What righteous indignation He manifested against satanic and hostile religious forces and what defiance of man to do His worst. What magnificent heroism in the face of a most brutal death.

References to the Lord Jesus Christ’s kindness can be linked to His gentleness.


The continuing influence of the gentle Christ puzzled Napoleon in the loneliness of his exile. “Tell me, Bertrand, how it is that while I dwell alone and friendless on this barren rock, the dead hand of the Nazarene Carpenter can reach down the centuries and draw millions to follow Him?” Napoleon’s friend replied, “The Nazarene Carpenter lived for others. Napoleon lived for himself.”

One of the most popular historians in his judgment of Napoleon said of him, “Success intoxicated him and made him mad.”

The greatness of our Lord’s gentleness had been missed. Someone protested to William Booth that self-preservation was the first law of nature. Yes, was the general’s retort, “but the first law of Grace is self sacrifice.” It was because of His gentle heart that the Lord Jesus Christ could not save Himself.

“Be Not High Minded, But Fear,” Romans 11:20

This heart appeal of Paul, who had sacrificed all “for his dear sake,” forms a fitting conclusion covering the Promises related to humility and lowliness.

The more we realize what deep debtors we are to the free and distinguished Grace of God, the less tendency we will have of thinking more highly of ourselves than we ought to.

Remembering that in ourselves we are still weak and prone to wonder, and open to the subtle and designing attacks of Satan serves to keep us humble and habitually dependent upon the Lord.

May the Grace of God be ours to cultivate the mental attitude of humility and gentleness of the Spirit.

The Key of Knowledge

While it is advantageous to deal with terms like knowledge, wisdom, and understanding, and all verses taken up with tuition or tutoring, noting the numerous Promises given with each, the following amalgamation will prove to be sufficient.

Several hundred references cover the above aspects of one general theme. In the main, the scores of Promises linked on to knowledge and wisdom are found in the Psalms and Proverbs. A diligent search of these will amply repay the student.

Another reason why we group the indicated terms together is because in many cases they spring from the same root and Scripture places their possessions in pairs.

“Incline thine ear unto wisdom...thine heart to understanding,” Prov 2:2, 5.

“The Wisdom and Knowledge of God,” Romans 11:33-34

While wisdom and knowledge may be akin, we can yet differentiate between the two. A person may have an abundance of acquired knowledge covering many fields, yet lack sufficient wisdom in the full use of his knowledge, or in the ordering of his life and in personal decisions.

On the other hand, he may have had very limited educational advantages. The learning of the schools was not his, yet his wisdom in many matters is unique.

Such a man was Dwight I. Moody who was forced to leave school when he was but a boy, and lacked the secular knowledge, which, through the schools he founded he ultimately gave to thousands. But yet uneducated, what remarkable insight, wisdom, and sagacity were his.

Solomon says, “Wisdom is the principal thing.”

Let Us Look at What the Bible Promises in Connection With Knowledge, Which in Some Cases Means Understanding

“The Lord is a God of knowledge,” 1 Sam 2:3.
“Shall any teach God knowledge?” Job 21:22.
“He that is perfect in knowledge...mighty in wisdom,” Job 36:4-5.
“Knowledge, wisdom, and instruction,” Prov 1:7.
“The lips of knowledge are a precious jewel,” Prov 20:15.
“My people have gone into captivity. They have no knowledge,” Isa 5:13.
Hosea 4:6, “My people are destroyed because of lack of knowledge.”
“Whom shall He teach knowledge...make understand Doctrine,” Isa 28:9.
“The Lord God hath given me knowledge of it,” Jer 11:18.
“Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,” Psa 139:6, Rom 11:33.

“To Know the Love of Christ Which Passeth Knowledge,” Ephesians 3:19

“Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord,” Hosea 6:3.
Paul presents us with one of the paradoxes of our faith, namely knowing the unknowable.

Along with the passages we have quoted, we can add also Promises found under the word “know” and how rich and satisfying they are.

“Revealed unto babes,” Matt 11:25.

The wise and prudent do not know everything. Mental and cultural equipment are not necessary for an appreciation of the Lord Jesus Christ and His ways.

Babes are not characterized by a deep understanding. But they do have the ability to believe what is told them in the confidence they repose in their elders, whose ways are beyond their little minds to fathom. We have the lesson our Lord emphasizes in the passage before us, “Revealed unto babes.”

“Revealed Unto Babes”

Are we simple enough to recognize a Divine revelation?

Have we reached the point where we can tell the Lord Jesus Christ that left to ourselves we have and know nothing? Do we believe that mere worldly wisdom is foolishness to God?

Is ours the attitude of a babe? Believing all our Father had declared?

The difficulty that the Lord confronts is that of pride in human attainments. Many people know too much. From such the deeper things are hid.

“The natural man cannot know them,” 1 Cor 2:14.

“God Giveth to a Man Knowledge,” Ecclesiastes 2:26

Secular knowledge comes by acquirement and spiritual knowledge by asking. The first is ours by research, the second by reception. Are we not guilty of folly when we refuse to take God at His Word and receive from His bountiful hand a knowledge of His love and will, which passeth knowledge?

Here is one of the mysteries of faith. We can know the unknowable. Further, the Divinely-imparted knowledge may be considered as:

  1. Experimental – 2 Tim 1:12.
  2. Affectionate – 1 John 3:19.
  3. Influential – Psa 9:10, Matt 5:16.
  4. Humiliating – Job 42:5-6.
  5. Satisfying – Psa 36:7.
  6. Superior – Phil 3:6.

Truly such knowledge is too wonderful for us. We may be unlettered and ignorant and judged by the world’s standards of knowledge, and yet have that Christian prudence and holy experience in the ways of the Lord. 2 Cor 8:7, 2 Pet 1:5-6.

Give me, my precious Saviour,
The wisdom from above.
I need that Thou should teach me,
The wonder of Thy love.
Make me wise that I may see,
More of Thy fullness,
More light from Thee.

Thou didst say, “I will instruct thee,”
And we believe Thy Word.
Depending on Thy guidance,
On our beloved Lord.

Sunday, December 23, 2001


How imperative it is to live with eternity’s values in view! We are Bunyan’s man with the muck rake seeing what is only at our feet, and not as conscious as we ought to be about the crown of gold above our head.

To gather under one heading all the Promises of eternal life, reward, and blessedness is a profitable exercise for a Bible study. Eternal and everlasting are equivalent terms. Think of the section.

“The eternal God...the everlasting arms,” Duet 33:27.
“Eternal salvation...eternal redemption,” Heb 5:9, 9:12.
“Eternal glory,” 2 Cor 4:17, 2 Tim 2:10.
“A house...eternal in the Heavens,” 2 Cor 5:1, Luke 16:9.
“Everlasting joy...everlasting love,” Isa 35:10, Jer 31:3.
“Everlasting kindness...everlasting consolation,” Isa 54:8, 2 Thes 2:16.
“The way everlasting…an everlasting king,” Psa 139:34, Jer 10:10.
“Eternal life...power of an endless life,” Titus 1:2, Heb 7:16.

For a conformation of your faith, go over all the passages related to eternal or everlasting life. You will be surprised as you collate all the promised future joys and blessings.

Faith Cometh by Hearing and Hearing of the Word of God

One way of having a strong faith is to study the passages concerning faith, believe, and trust as they are found in the Word of God. Here are a few nuggets from a heap of gold.

“Have faith in God,” Mark 11:22.
“According to your faith,” Matt 9:20.
“Justified by faith,” Rom 5:1.
“The just shall live by faith,” Rom 1:17.
“Without faith it is impossible to please God,” Heb 11:6.
“Precious faith,” 2 Pet 1:1.
“Breastplate of faith,” Eph 6:16, 1 Thes 5:8.
“This is the victory...even our faith,” 1 John 5:4.
“Full assurance of faith,” Heb 10:22.
“Contend earnestly for the faith,” Jude 3.
“Your faith groweth exceedingly,” 2 Thes 1:3.
“Unfeigned faith,” 2 Tim 1:5.


Among the 300 references to “believe,” “believers,” and “believed,” here are a few to encourage you to keep on believing in the Word of God and God.

“All that believe are justified,” Acts 13:39.
“I know whom I have believed,” 2 Tim 1:12.
“I believe God,” Acts 27:25.
“Only believe,” Mark 5:36.
“Unto you who believe He is precious,” 1 Pet 2:7.
“We believe that we shall live with Him,” Rom 6:8.
“He that believeth shall never thirst,” John 6:35.
“Whosoever that believeth on Me shall never die,” John 11:26.
“Joy and peace in believing,” Rom 15:13.
“Power to them that believe on His Name,” John 1:12.
“The Father Himself loveth you because ye have believed,” John 16:27.
“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved,” Acts 16:31.

The Faithfulness of God

“Thy faithfulness reaches unto the clouds,” Psa 36:5, 1 Pet 4:19.
“I have declared Thy faithfulness,” Psa 40:10.
“Thy faithfulness to all generations,” Psa 89:1, 25, 8:24, 33.
“To show forth Thy faithfulness every night,” Psa 92:3.
“In Thy faithfulness answer me,” Psa 143:1, Rev 21:5, 22:6.
“He is God, the faithful God,” Deut 7:9.
“Faithfulness, the girdle of thy loins,” Isa 11:5.
“The counsels of old are Faithfulness and Truth,” Isa 35:1.
“The Lord that is faithful,” Isa 49:7, Heb 10:23.
“Great is Thy faithfulness,” Lam 3:23, Heb 11:11.
“I will even betroth thee unto Me in faithfulness,” Hosea 2:26.
“He abideth faithful,” 2 Tim 2:23, 1 Cor 1:9, 10:13.

All these testimonies are heavy with the Promise of God’s unfailing care and provision for His own. There has never been the least flicker in the lamp of Divine loyalty.

“Thou art the same.”

As the faithful God, He must be true to His own nature. See Isa 25:1 and 1 John 1:9.

Great is Thy faithfulness...Great is Thy faithfulness.

Faithfulness and the Exhibition of the Same Quality in the Life and Labors of the Lord Jesus Christ

Who came revealing Divine faithfulness

“His Seed shall be established for ever,” Psa 89:36, 37.
“The Lord is faithful who will stablish you,” 2 Thes 3:3, Heb 2:7.
“The faithful and the true Witness,” Rev 1:5, 3:14, 19:11.

Solomon asked the question, “But a faithful man who can find?”

The Man, the Lord Jesus Christ, was faithful in all things. If ever one was faithful unto death, it was the Lord Jesus Christ.

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