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Theology => Apologetics => Topic started by: nChrist on July 14, 2005, 04:46:18 PM

Title: JESUS and the CROSS!!
Post by: nChrist on July 14, 2005, 04:46:18 PM
(My Note:  If you are lost, stop and read this series of posts. JESUS is calling you and wants to be your Lord and Saviour forever. If you are a Christian who has become cold or one who is no longer living a life of VICTORY IN JESUS, stop and read this series of posts.)

July 14

The Road to Emmaus - Page 1
By George H. Morrison

Two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus— Luk_24:13

The Most Memorable Appearance of the Risen Christ

Of all the appearances of the risen Christ, none has a stronger hold upon Christendom than the one along the road to Emmaus. It has brought light to many darkened hearts, and comfort to innumerable souls. Christ revealed Himself to Mary in the garden, and that will always be precious to the Church. He revealed Himself to the eleven, and to Thomas, and to Peter and John beside the sea of Galilee. But this meeting on the Emmaus road, with its revelation of the living Savior, is engraven on the universal heart.

Who these two were we cannot tell. We know nothing about them except the name of one of them. And we are not at liberty to associate that name Cleophas with the Klopas who is mentioned in the Gospels. That they were not of the eleven disciples is certain, for it was to the eleven that they hurried with their news. They were clearly on intimate terms with the apostles, for they knew where they lodged when they went straight to them. But beyond that we know nothing of the men, neither their story in the days before the cross, nor yet their service in the coming years when the Holy Ghost was given at Pentecost. They were in no sense distinguished persons. They were not outstanding in their zeal or love. They occupied no place of proud preeminence among those who had been followers of the Lord. And I take it as characteristic of the Lord that in the glory of His resurrection life He gave Himself with such fulness of disclosure to those unknown and undistinguished men. It reminds one vividly of that earlier hour when He had talked with the woman of Samaria. She too was nameless, and utterly obscure, yet with her He lingered in the richest converse. And now the cross has come, and He has died and risen, yet being risen He is still unchanged, for He still reveals Himself to lowly hearts. Here is the Savior for the common man. Here is the Lord who does not spurn the humble. Here is the Master of all those obscure lives that are yet precious in the sight of heaven. Had these two travelers been John and Peter, we might have hesitated to take home their rich experience, but being what they were, they are our brothers.

The Two Travelers Were without Hope

First then let us try to understand the state of mind of these two travelers. And in the first place this is notable, that these two travelers had lost their hopes. There was a time, not so long ago, when their hopes had been burning brightly like a star. They trusted this was He who should redeem Israel—that was the glowing conviction of their hearts. And as they followed Jesus in His public ministry, and saw His miracles, and heard His words, brighter and even brighter grew the hope that this was the Christ, the Son of the living God. Even the cross itself had not dispelled their hopes, for they remembered that He had talked of that. They remembered that He had said, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." But now the third day's sun was near to setting, and darkness was soon to fall upon the world, and a great darkness, heavier than sunset, was beginning to cast its shadow on their hearts. It was true that some women had come hurrying in, bearing the tidings that the tomb was empty. But it was one thing to be told the tomb was empty, and quite another to believe that Christ was risen. And even the women had confessed, when questioned, that they had not seen the Lord Himself, but only an empty grave, and the stone rolled away, and certain mysterious shapes they took for angels. Clearly, then, their Master had not risen. He was still sleeping somewhere beneath the Syrian sky. They would never see Him again, nor hear His words, nor follow Him through any village street. And so that evening, journeying to Emmaus, they were men convinced that they had lost their Lord, and having lost Him they had lost their hopes. Are there any today who are like these men? Any who have lost their hope in Christ? Any to whom Christ was very real once, and who now have a "name to live and yet are dead"? My brother and sister, if that be your condition—if once you had a hope that now is dimmed—you are like these two journeying to Emmaus.

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Title: The Road to Emmaus - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on July 14, 2005, 04:48:14 PM
The Road to Emmaus - Page 2
By George H. Morrison

They Were without Joy

Then in the next place this is notable, that these two travelers had lost their gladness. "What manner of communications are these that ye have one to another," said Jesus to them, "as ye walk and are sad?" Sometimes, as we pass along the streets, we meet a face of unutterable sadness. Sorrow is stamped on every lineament of it, all the more tragic because a smile is there. And when we see it, amid the crowd of faces that bear no trace of any great experience, it haunts us so that is it long ere we forget it. Now that is what our Lord seems to have noticed, graven deep upon the faces of these travelers. "What are ye talking about," He said to them, "as ye walk together and are sad?" The utter absence of joy upon their faces—the look of melancholy and of sorrow—touched at once His tender loving heart. And can you wonder that their looks were sad, when all that brightened life for them was gone? A hopeless heart may be a very brave heart, but I never heard that it was a merry heart. So these two disciples, having lost their hopes, had lost that gladness which is the child of hope, and as they walked together they were sad.

So long as Jesus Christ had been alive, there had been a great gladness in their hearts. Only to see Him had been like music to them, as it always is with anyone we love. That they had had their troubles just like other people, is only to say that they were human. Perhaps they were farmers struggling with short harvests, or fishermen who had often toiled and had caught nothing. But this was certain, that in Jesus' company their deepest experience was a great gladness, a joy that they never could quite fathom, and yet which they knew to be intensely real. Always in His society there was delight. There was a feeling of peace and of security. When He was with them all their care and worry took to itself wings and fled away. But now their Lord has passed beyond their ken, and it was like the passing of the sunshine for them, and as they walked together they were sad. Now sadness is of many kinds. There is the sadness which the exile feels when he is far away from home and kindred, and when in the thronging of the crowd around him he catches no glimpse of a familiar face. There is the sadness which the aged feel, when they remember happy days now gone forever; and there is the sadness of the open grave. All these are elements of our mortality, but there is a spiritual sadness different from these, and the cause of it is an absent Lord. When in prayer the heavens seem as brass, when the Bible loses its fragrance and its dew, when spiritual books begin to pall on us, when the services of the House of God become a weariness, then is the heart of the true disciple sad. Then does one feel as if Jesus had not risen, and as if all one's hopes in Him had been a mockery. Then do men cry the exceeding bitter cry, "They have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid Him." And should there be any of God's children who are suffering from such spiritual desertion, I beg of them to remember that their frame of heart is like that of the two journeying to Emmaus.

They Were Not without Desire

But there is one thing more that is notable, and it is this, that these two had lost none of their desire. They had lost their hope and they had lost their gladness, but they had lost none of their desire. That afternoon, walking to Emmaus, their talk was all of the Lord Jesus Christ. And from a hint in the original, we learn that their talk was animated, intense, and eager. They were talking loudly, as Orientals do, and the words were being flung one to the other, for out of the fulness of the heart the mouth was speaking. Someone has said, and there is truth in it, that our friends are never really ours till we have lost them. Only then, undimmed and unobscured, does the vision of them arise within our hearts. And as it is with those whom we have loved, and who have left us and passed into the shadow, so was it with these disciples and their Lord. They never understood how much they needed Him until the day when they thought that He was gone. They never understood how much they loved Him, till the shadow of parting had fallen on their love. But now they knew it, and so, that dreary day, their talk as they journeyed was all of Jesus Christ, and the deepest desire of their hearts was this: Oh that I knew where I might find Him! Are there any reading these words who in the secret of their souls are saying that? Careless and prayerless, backsliding and worldly, are you coming to feel you cannot live without Him? If so—if as the hart for the water-brooks, unsatisfied, you thirst for the living God—remember you have a kinship with these two.

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Title: The Road to Emmaus - Page 3
Post by: nChrist on July 14, 2005, 04:50:07 PM
The Road to Emmaus - Page 3
By George H. Morrison

Christ Showed Them the Supreme Necessity of His Death

In the first place, then, and passing by minor matters, He showed them the supreme necessity of His death. "Ought not Christ," He said, "to have suffered these things, that so He might enter into glory?" We may take it for certain that these two disciples had never really grasped the need that Christ should die. They had shared in the common hope that He would reign, and it was a throne they were dreaming of and not a cross. If any dark surmising had arisen in them, stirred by the mysterious words of Jesus, they had crushed them as something too terrible to contemplate. That He whom they loved should die a felon's death was something too awful to believe. And when it happened—there, before their eyes—it seemed a hideous and irreparable calamity. It was as if there had been some mistake in heaven; as if the will of the Eternal had been battled; as if powers were abroad defying the Messiah, and hurrying His triumph into tragedy. And then Christ met them, and spoke about His death, and they learned that the crucifixion was no accident. It was no longer the greatest of calamities; it became the greatest of necessities. Ought not Christ to have suffered these things? And they saw its moral and spiritual grandeur; and it dawned upon them that the cross they loathed was something more wonderful than any crown. It was then that their hearts began to burn within them, and the light to break upon their darkened souls. And everything looked different to them now when they saw the meaning of the death of Jesus. And I venture to say that it is always so with hearts that are hungering for the living God—the primary step towards fellowship and peace is to come face to face with the death of Jesus Christ. That I am a sinner and cannot save myself—that God has provided an all-sufficient Savior—that He has died for me, and that I die in Him, and through His death I can reach up to heaven again—all this, so simple that a child can grasp it, and yet so deep that angels cannot fathom it, is the basis of our peace with God. Think not to comprehend all that it means. The deepest we can never comprehend. Call it a substitution if you will—call it an atonement, call it anything. The vital thing is not what you may call it; the vital thing is to grasp it and to feel it, and feeling it to find that in the blood of Christ there is peace of conscience and fellowship with God.

Christ Opened Their Eyes and Hearts to the Scriptures

Then the next step our Savior took was to lead them back to the Word of God again. "Beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself." We know from the Gospels how Christ had loved the Scripture in the days of His ministry before the cross. We know how He used it when He was tempted, and how He preached from it in the synagogue of Nazareth. And it is a sign to us that He is still the same, though He has passed into the resurrection glory, that He still goes back to the old familiar Scripture which He had learned beside His mother's knee. It is a singular thing that, after He was risen, Christ is never mentioned to have appeared to His mother even once. The name of Mary is never mentioned once in the forty days of our Savior's resurrection. But I sometimes think that when she heard these two rehearsing all that He had taught them from the Scripture, she would have her own sweet secret memories of the old home, and would be quietly certain she was not forgotten. Had these two travelers, then, been neglecting their Bibles? I do not think that that is the least likely. Probably they knew Moses and the prophets far better than any of us. But I want you to think what Scripture must have meant to them in all manner of unexpected depth and fulness, when the Interpreter of it was the Lord Jesus Christ. You and I may have listened to some saintly preacher drawing out the inner meaning of God's Word. And as we did so, our hearts burned within us, and we saw what we had never seen before. And if that be so with an erring, sinful minister, I want you to try to think what it must have been when the risen Son of God handled the Scripture, and showed these two the meaning of it all. Once again they heard of the Paschal Lamb, and of the Brazen Serpent in the wilderness, and of the smitten shepherd in Zechariah, and of the suffering servant in Isaiah. But hearing it all interpreted by Christ, the Bible became a living book to them, and in the hour when it became a living book, they found that Christ Himself was by their side. Once more do I venture to suggest that it is always so in the experience of the soul. One of the surest signs that Christ is nigh is when He makes the Bible live again. It is a living Christ who makes a living Scripture, and when He is going to reveal Himself to us, passages that we have known since we were children begin once more to live and burn for us. If Christ be absent, then all the lore of ages will never make the Word a living book. If Christ be dead for us, in heart and conscience, then is the Bible always a dead book. But when old texts take a strange grip of us, when they haunt us through the market and the street, when we cannot silence some gracious invitation, when we cannot shake off some oracle of warning, when promises come like music to our ear in days of despondency or hours of peril, when some great text that we have long ignored reaches out its loving hands to us, I say that when that happens to a man, the risen Savior is not far away. That was what the two disciples found. The Bible became a living book to them. And their hearts burned within them as they heard again the echo of the old familiar passages. And it all meant that He whom they thought vanished was not vanished but at their very side, though their eyes were holden, and they did not know Him.

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Title: The Road to Emmaus - Page 4
Post by: nChrist on July 14, 2005, 04:52:06 PM
The Road to Emmaus - Page 4
By George H. Morrison

Christ Revealed Himself in the Breaking of the Bread

And then He revealed Himself in the breaking of the bread, and it seems like an anti-climax, does it not? After all this marshaled preparation, shall we not look for something far more glorious? We shall have some vision that will strike the sense? We shall have some flash of glory on the eye? "And He revealed Himself in the breaking of the bread." It was in no sense a sacramental meal, as we use that word sacrament in our theology. It was a frugal supper in a village home of two tired travelers, and another. Yet it was then—in the breaking of the bread, and not in any vision of resurrection splendor—that they knew that their companion was the Lord. How that discovery flashed upon their hearts, the Bible, so wonderful in its silences, does not tell. It may have been the quiet air of majesty with which He took at once the place of host, when they had invited Him in to be their guest. It may have been the familiar word of blessing that awakened sweet memories of Galilean days. Or it may have been that as He put forth His hand after the blessing to take the bread and break it, they saw that it was a hand which had been pierced. However it was, whether by word or hand, they felt irresistibly that this was He. Some little action, some dear familiar trait, told them in a flash this was the Christ. Not in some vision of resurrection glory, but in some characteristic movement of the fingers, maybe, they recognized that they found their Lord. In daily life we are always meeting that—the revelation of the insignificant. A certain trick of speech—a tone, a look—and someone whom we have lost is at our side again. And so when a man has spiritually lost his Savior, and is being restored to the joy of his first love, it is often so that the Lord reveals Himself. Our commonest mercies come to gleam on us as the most wonderful of all created things. Our sicknesses, our trials, our disappointments, are all transfigured with a Father's love. Until at last though we have seen no vision, and have only had common meals and common mercies, we too are thrilled and say, "It is the Lord." When that deep certainty once fills a man it seems as if nothing else could ever matter. When that deep certainty once fills a man, in a real sense for him to live is Christ. When that deep certainty once fills a man, he will hurry like these two disciples to Jerusalem, and tell out, though he may not say a word, that he has seen the Lord.


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Ascension
Post by: nChrist on July 18, 2005, 10:26:39 PM
July 18

The Ascension - by George H. Morrison

Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have .... And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat?— Luk_24:39-41

Why Forty Resurrection Days?

Ten appearances of the risen Lord are recorded in the New Testament, and of these no fewer than five occurred on the day of resurrection. Of the ten appearances Luke narrates three—(1) that to the disciples on the road to Emmaus (Luk_24:13-35); (2) that to the ten apostles and others (Luk_24:36-49); (3) that on the occasion of the Ascension (Luk_24:50-51), separated by an interval of days from the preceding one, though we might not gather that from a hasty reading of the chapter. Let us remember, too, that from resurrection to ascension there elapsed a period of forty days, and let us recall how often a like period had figured in the story of the Bible. For forty days Moses was on the Mount, preparing for his deliverance of the law. For forty days Elijah was in the wilderness before he came forth for his great work in Israel. For forty days Jesus Himself was in the desert, at the beginning of His public ministry. May it not be that these forty resurrection days were a preface to that glorious ministry in heaven, which Jesus is to carry on forevermore?

They Believed Not for Joy

The disciples then were gathered together, probably in that very upper chamber which was now hallowed with all manner of blessed memory, when Jesus (though the doors were shut for fear of the Jews) appeared in their midst and said, "Peace be unto you." One marks the suddenness of Christ's procedure now. He had suddenly left the two disciples at Emmaus. He suddenly stands amid the ten disciples here. In the action and movement of the risen Jesus there is an unexpected and arresting swiftness that we do not find in the days before the cross. The disciples were scared (for the Greek word means that). It was Jesus, but so altered that He seemed a spirit. And once again we can do nothing but marvel at the timely and wise compassion of the Lord. He did not rebuke them—He knew that they were dust. He bade them touch Him and look at His hands and feet, and handle Him. It was only to a worshipping and adoring Mary that He could say, "Touch me not (thy faith hath made thee whole), for I ascend unto the Father." They touched Him, and never forgot that touch. One touch of a hand will alter a life sometimes. I think that John was living this hour again when long years afterwards he began his priceless letter by speaking of what our hands have handled of the Word of Life (1Jo_1:1). Then a great joy, like a tide, swept over them. And they could not believe, they were so glad. Not long ago Christ found them sleeping for sorrow (Luk_22:45), and now He found them disbelieving for joy. Do not forget, then, that joy can hinder faith. It may be as great a foe to faith as sorrow sometimes is. There was no door to shut or open here, as there was with little Rhoda in the Acts; yet when Rhoda opened not the gate for gladness (Act_12:14), she was like the ten, who believed not for joy.                      

That One Hour

But Jesus is very tender with such unbelief, for it is as if the sunshine (and not sin) were blinding men. He called for food, and they gave Him a piece of fish. Jerusalem was always well supplied with that. And I dare say the two who had walked with Him to Emmaus, thought He would break it, and suddenly disappear. But "God fulfills Himself in many ways," and Christ had other purposes to serve. He took it, and did eat before them. Who of them now could say this was a spirit? Once many had believed (on the hillside) when Christ made others eat. Now they believed because He Himself ate. Then Jesus led them into the heart of Scripture. He went back to the law and the prophets and the psalms. He read that old story in the light of all that happened till their hearts burned and glowed at the interpretation. Can you wonder that in the Book of Acts the disciples should be so mighty in the Word? A single hour will sometimes teach us more than the dull strivings of half a score of years. And in that one hour, in the upper chamber with Christ, Scripture became a new book to the disciples. Never forget how earnestly and constantly our Lord appealed to the testimony of the Word. Jesus dwelt deep in history and Psalm and prophecy. There never was such a student of the Scripture. He used it as His weapon in the desert. He confuted His enemies with their own sacred books. He found His solace in it. He read His mission there. He went back to its deep words when hanging on Calvary. He taught it more urgently than ever when He rose. The Bible was full of authority and power for a Savior who had risen from the dead.

A Fitting Departure

Then when the forty days were over, and the closing counsels and commissions had been given, Christ led His disciples through the streets of Jerusalem, and over Kedron, and past the shadows of Gethsemane. I think the little company were all silent; their hearts were too full of memories for speech. Then they passed out to the upland ground near Bethany, and Jesus lifted up His hands, and blessed them. And while He blessed them, a cloud gathered, and parted them, and Jesus was carried up into heaven. How simple and how reserved is the whole scene! There is no chariot of fire; no sound of music. It was a fitting departure of One who would not strive nor cry, and who had come down on the mown grass gently as the rain. And did the disciples sorrow or lament? They returned to Jerusalem with great joy (Luk_24:52). Christ had not left them; He would be with them still. Their Lord and they would never be parted again. A little before, they could not believe for joy. Now they were joyful just because they believed.


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Best Wine Last (Please Read)
Post by: nChrist on July 22, 2005, 04:29:42 AM
July 22

The Best Wine Last (Please Read) - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now—- Joh_2:10

With God, the Best Is at the End

Into the story of this memorable marriage I do not propose to go. Rather, I wish to base what I may have to say on this remark of the ruler of the feast. Why, do you think, did this saying so impress John that it lingered ineffaceable in his memory? Was it merely because of the pleasure it evoked to hear his Master's handiwork so praised? I think there was a deeper reason. John was by nature an idealist, loving to find the abstract in the concrete. In the particular instance of the moment, he was quick to see the universal law. And it flashed on John, hearing this chairman speak, that he was speaking more wisely than he knew and uttering a truth that had far wider range than the miracle at that wedding of Cana. Was it not true of many an earthly pageant that the best wine was given at the beginning? Was it not true wherever Christ was active that the best wine was kept until the end? In other words, take man apart from God and always it is the worse which follows; but take God in any of His thousand energies, and always the best is kept until the end.

Without God the Last Is the Worse

It is on these two truths I wish to speak. And first on the sadder and more somber of them. Think, then, for a moment of life itself, unsustained by the hope we have in God. Now I am not a pessimist as you all know; nor am I given to painting dark or depressing pictures; yet the fact is too plain to be gainsaid—afterward that which is worse. First comes childhood with its joy and wonder and with its world compact of mystery and charm. Then follows youth with its ideal and vision; then opening manhood with its glowing hopes. And the world is still a very noble place, and the gates of the prison house have not yet closed, and the body, whether for toil or joy, is still a subtle and a powerful instrument. Then come the heat and battle of middle age, and the weakness and the weariness of age, and the years when men say, "I have no pleasure in them," and when all the daughters of music are brought low; and the grasshopper shall be a burden, and desire shall fail, and they who were strong men once shall bow themselves. Is this the gallant youth of long ago, this bent and tottering and palsied form? Are these the eyes that once were bright with love? Is that the brain that was so clear and keen?

Last scene of all

That ends this strange eventful history,

Is second childishness and mere oblivion,

Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

Afterward That Which Is Worse

Or think again of life's relationships on which the blessing of God is never sought. When character is unchastened and unpurified, how often do the years bring disappointment! Think of the tie of fatherhood and sonship. To the little child the father is a hero. No pictured saint wears such a golden halo as does the father in his children's eyes. His character is flawless and complete above all question and all criticism; it is the image in the childish mirror of the dim and shadowy character of God. Happy the child who, when its eyes are opened, still finds a character that it can reverence! But if the father is living without God, who is swifter to see it than the growing boy? And all that revelation of unworthiness, with occasional glimpses of what is darker still, makes the cup bitter which was once so sweet. And then the words were spoken at a marriage. Are they never true of that most sacred tie? Are there no wives or husbands who are whispering, "Afterwards that which is worse"? They remember a day when life was full of courtesy and of little attentions that were better than gold and of a charity that suffered long and of a kindness that was the breath of heaven. Where has it fled to, that kindness of the morning? Who set by the hearth these irritable, tempers? Is that cold voice the voice that was so tender in the gentle and sweet days of long ago? Unguarded by the consciousness of God, unchastened by the discipline of watchfulness, unwatered by the kindly dew of prayer, unhelped by the strength made perfect in our weakness; how many homes there are that know too well—afterward that which is worse.

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Title: The Best Wine Last (Please Read) - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on July 22, 2005, 04:32:32 AM
The Best Wine Last (Please Read) - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

Sin Gives the Best in the Beginning

Once more you will think how true this is of sin. It is indeed the masterpiece of evil. It is the token and the triumph of all sin that it always gives the best wine at the start. That is why men of open and generous natures are often those most bitterly assailed. They do not calculate nor look ahead nor reckon seriously with the morrow. And sin is so fair and pleasant at the outset and hides its afterward with such consummate mastery that the reckless heart becomes an easy prey. Do you not think, now, if all the miseries of drunkenness were to meet a man upon the verge of drinking—do you not think he would cry out for help and turn from his accursed vice and flee? But drunkenness does not begin like that. It begins in the social hour and happy comradeship, and only afterwards there are the blighted prospects and the shattered body and the ruined home. Let any young man see what I as a minister have seen of the worse-than-death that follows social sin, and he will fall on his knees in prayer to God for strength to keep himself unspotted from the world. But sin is cunning and conceals all that; it sets on the table a delicious vintage; and only afterwards—but always afterwards—that which is worse.

Sin Conceals the Worse

And I cannot leave this darker side of things without asking, must all that stop at death? I wish most passionately I could believe it did; but I see no reasonable ground for that assurance. You tell me that you don't believe in hell. If you take hell to be a red devil with a fork, I don't believe in it either. But I believe in law; I believe in immortality; I believe in the momentum of a life. And if the momentum of a life be downward, and be unchecked by the strong arm of God, how can we hope that it will be arrested by the frail and yielding harrier of the grave? I hesitate to dwell upon that thought. All I wish to say to you is this. If sin conceals the worse behind tomorrow, may it not conceal the worse behind the grave? Sum up the issues of sin that you have known; the bitterness, the tears, the vain regret; think of its darkened homes, its blighted lives, its wreckage everywhere of broken hearts; then go, and as you gaze into a lost eternity, say, "Afterwards, that which is worse."

The Progress of God's Creation

But now I turn, and I do so very gladly, to the energies and activities of God. Wherever God in Christ is working, the best wine is kept until the end.

Think first for a moment of creation. There was a time, not so long ago, when religion trembled at the assault of science. It seemed as if science, flushed with her many victories and pressing forward to universal conquest, might drive from the field, in ignominious rout, many of the truths of revelation. One hears a great deal less of that today. The combatants have been laying down their arms. They have been learning that the field of battle was divinely meant to be a field of brotherhood. And nowhere have they better learned that lesson than in regard to the method of creation, for Scripture and science are agreed in this, that the best wine was kept until the end. First there was chaos and the formless deep; then light, and the ingathering of the waters. Then the first dawn of life in lowliest form, followed by bird and beast. And always the path was upward, from dull and shapeless horror, to what was better, richer, and more beautiful. And then at last, not at the first, came man, capable of communion with his Maker; greater, by that spark of God within him, than sun and moon and all the host of heaven. And it is in man, so noble though so fallen, so touched with heaven although so soiled with hell, that we discover it is the way of God to keep the best wine until the end.

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Title: The Best Wine Last (Please Read) - Page 3
Post by: nChrist on July 22, 2005, 04:35:41 AM
The Best Wine Last (Please Read) - Page 3
by George H. Morrison

God's Revelation Is Progressive

The same is true in the sphere of revelation, the revelation of the divine to man. Not all at once, in sudden burst of glory, did God reveal Himself to human hearts. We speak of revelation as progressive. That is a truth which we insist on now. Only as men are able to receive it will God reveal the riches of His grace. And so from age to age men were led on from the first flush and crimson of the dawn to the perfect radiance of Him who said, "I am the light of the world." Have you ever wondered why God delayed His coming, why the wheels of His chariot tarried for so long? Compared with all the ages of mankind, it is but a little while since Christ was here. But this is the meaning of that long delay, that the God of creation and of grace is one, and that in both activities alike, He keeps the best wine until the last. You remember how the writer to the Hebrews puts it, "God who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son" (Heb_1:1-2). Precious are the promises of the Old Testament. Precious are the teachings of the prophets. Precious is every gleam that was vouchsafed to the waiting heart of patriarch and psalmist. But it is when we turn to Christ, the Son of God, the way, the truth, the life, the resurrection, that we cry with the ruler of the feast at Cana, "Thou hast kept the best wine until now."

Calvary Was the Best at the Last

I think, too, we may apply this thought to the life of the incarnate Lord Himself. It was all blessed, yet it was most blessed, not in its beginning but its end. I turn to the manger-cradle by the inn when I wish to fathom His humiliation. I turn to His words and to His perfect life when I wish to know the Fatherhood of God. But when I realize I am a sinner and that my deepest need is pardon and release, then it is "Rock of ages cleft for me, let me hide myself in Thee." Not on the teaching of Christ is the church built, although that teaching shall never pass away. Not on the example of Christ is the church built, though that example be its spur and goal. The church of God is built upon redemption, on pardon and peace that have been won through death; and that is why Christendom has looked to Calvary and said, "Thou hast kept the best wine until now." If the Sermon on the Mount were the whole Gospel, I confess that I could hardly understand it. It is so unlike all that we know of God to give all that is best at the beginning. But if the Sermon on the Mount be but a step in the ladder that leads upward to the cross, then, in the life and death of Jesus, I am in touch with the ways of the divine. It is that fact—the fact of a redemption—that fills and floods the apostolic page. It is that fact that has made the cross the universal symbol of the Gospel. "And he took the cup .... and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; for this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins" (Mat_26:27-28). Ah yes, Thou hast kept the best wine until now.

The Path of the Just Shines More and More

Lastly, and in a word or two, is not this true also of our Christian calling? The path of the just is as the shining light which shineth more and more unto the perfect day. Not all at once does Christ reveal Himself when we go forward determined to be His. And the old life still struggles for the mastery, and we are in heaviness through manifold temptations. But the difference between Christ and the devil is just this, that the devil's tomorrow is worse than his today; but the morrow of Christ, for every man who trusts Him, is always brighter and better than His yesterday. Every act of obedience that we do gives us a new vision of His love. Sorrow and trial reveal His might of sympathy as the darkness of the night reveals the stars. And when at last the wrestling is over, and like tired children we lie down to sleep, and when we waken and behold His face in the land where there is no more weariness, I think we shall look back upon it all and find new meaning in every hour of it; but I think also we shall cry adoringly, "Thou hast kept the best wine until now."


By George H. Morrison

Title: Re:The Best Wine Last (Please Read)
Post by: nChrist on July 22, 2005, 04:55:14 AM
Brothers and Sisters,

I loved this beautiful message. It touched my heart, and I must say


Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable GIFT, Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour Forever!

For the lost reading this message, please stop and read it again!

Love In Christ,

Ephesians 2:1 ASV  And you did he make alive, when ye were dead through your trespasses and sins,

Ephesians 2:2 ASV  wherein ye once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the powers of the air, of the spirit that now worketh in the sons of disobedience;

Ephesians 2:3 ASV  among whom we also all once lived in the lust of our flesh, doing the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest:--

Ephesians 2:4 ASV  but God, being rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,

Ephesians 2:5 ASV  even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace have ye been saved),

Ephesians 2:6 ASV  and raised us up with him, and made us to sit with him in the heavenly places, in Christ Jesus:

Ephesians 2:7 ASV  that in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus:

Ephesians 2:8 ASV  for by grace have ye been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;

Ephesians 2:9 ASV  not of works, that no man should glory.

Ephesians 2:10 ASV  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God afore prepared that we should walk in them.

Title: Re:The Best Wine Last (Please Read)
Post by: ForHisGlory on July 22, 2005, 06:38:54 AM
I tend to forget that the best will come, and it was good to be reminded of it. I have been having a really hard month, and needed this.

Title: Re:The Best Wine Last (Please Read)
Post by: nChrist on July 23, 2005, 01:09:15 PM
I tend to forget that the best will come, and it was good to be reminded of it. I have been having a really hard month, and needed this.


I will be praying for you. I'm positive that many Christians around the world are having times of trial. I firmly believe these times of trial can and should bring us closer to our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. I pray that is exactly what happens in your time of trial.

Love In Christ,

1 John 5:4-5 ASV  For whatsoever is begotten of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that hath overcome the world, even our faith.  And who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

Title: Christ is Alive
Post by: nChrist on July 31, 2005, 12:56:01 AM
From The American Tract Society
Labeled Free Distribution

Christ is Alive


I have found that one can tell how a person values life by his estimation of death. I once talked with a man who had never given serious thought to death until it was discovered that he had cancer. “Immediately my entire world changed” he said. “The things I valued most are worthless, and the things that I thought were of little value are now the most important things in the world to me.”


Physical life is a possession that we all cling to, and yet we know we must all sooner or later bow to death. It enters the home of the rich as boldly as it enters the apartment in the projects. It brings down the final curtain as swiftly on the famous as it does on the unknown. Before this year ends many people reading this message will keep their appointment with death.

There are many who say “I believe in life after death, but I’m not concerned about crossing that bridge until I get to it.” How strange that people should spend years preparing for retirement and not take so much as five minutes to prepare to meet God.

Another attitude toward death is this: “I stand with Christ, the Lord of life and death, and rest my case in His hands.” David said “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for You are with me” (Psalm 23:4). The Apostle Paul said, “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21). Both men were looking ahead to death with calm assurance. They knew that this life was only a dressing room for eternity.

Jesus said “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me will live, even though he dies” (John 11:25). Death need not be a bitter can be a bright dawning.


Christ is alive! And because He is alive, that makes all the difference in the world. In His resurrection evil has been defeated, love has conquered hate, death has lost its sting, and Satan has been defeated. Christ on the cross—He declared that the full penalty for sin has been paid. And one day all of creation will burst forth into a new song.

Christ is alive! The early Christians proclaimed that truth. They believed that the same power that raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will work in and through us to rescue us from our doubts, our darkness, our failure, and even our death.

As we look at the world today we cannot help but be disturbed by what is happening. But the resurrection of Christ tells us as His followers that we need not press the panic button. It is true that we are concerned and burdened and it is certain we are going to die, but we do not cry in terror as others do.

The day before John Huss, a 15th century martyr condemned for his faith in Christ, was to be burned at the stake, he wrote, “I write this in prison and in chains, expecting tomorrow to receive the sentence of death—full of hope in God that I shall not swerve from the truth.”

Is this hope and peace and joy yours? Can you face death with a smile, with full confidence that you are going into the presence of Christ? You can have this hope if you are willing to turn from sin and trust Christ. You can do it now. “If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead you will be saved” (Romans 10:9).
Billy Graham

Copyright 2005 - American Tract Society


My Notes:  

First:  I give thanks that JESUS is LORD over my life.

Second:  I give thanks that the American Tract Society and other sweet Christian groups distribute material like this.


Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable GIFT, Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour Forever!

Title: Connecting with the Divine
Post by: nChrist on July 31, 2005, 01:03:08 AM
From The American Tract Society
Labeled Free Distribution

Connecting with the Divine - Page 1

The following is an opportunity to look into the major world faith systems... Hinduism, New Age, Buddhism, Islam, and Christianity. Included is a brief description of each, their distinguishing characteristics, and what a person can gain from each. The author then presents for your consideration the ways in which Christianity differs from these other world faiths. (Each of these religions has extremists with differing beliefs. The description given here focuses on the heart of that religion.)


Most Hindus worship a multitude of gods and goddesses, some 300,000 of them. These various gods all converge into a universal spirit called the Ultimate Reality or Brahman. Brahman is not a god, but more of a term for ultimate oneness.

Hindus see their position in this present life as based on their actions in a previous life. If their behavior before was evil, they might experience tremendous hardships in this life. A Hindu's goal is to become free from the law of be free from continuous reincarnations.

New Age

New Age promotes the development of the person's own power or divinity. When referring to God, a follower of New Age is not talking about the transcendent, personal God who created the universe, but is referring to a higher consciousness within themselves.. A person in New Age would see themselves as God, the cosmos, the universe. Everything that the person sees, hears, feels or imagines is to be considered divine.

Highly eclectic, New Age presents itself as a collection of ancient spiritual traditions. It acknowledges many gods and goddesses, as in Hinduism. The Earth is viewed as the source of all spirituality and has its own intelligence, emotions and deity. But superseding all is self, the originator, controller and god of all. There is no reality outside of what the person determines.


Buddhists do not worship any gods or God. People outside of Buddhism often think that Buddhists worship the Buddha. However, Buddha (Siddhartha Gautama) never claimed to be divine, and Buddhists reject the notion of any supernatural power. The universe operates by natural law. Life is seen as consisting of pain: pain in birth, sickness, death and continuous sorrow and despair. Most Buddhists believe a person has hundreds or thousands of reincarnations, all bringing misery. And it is the desire for happiness that causes a person's reincarnation. Therefore, the goal of a Buddhist is to purify one's heart and to let go of all desires. A person must abandon all sensuous pleasures, all evil, all joy and all sorrow.


Muslims believe there is the one almighty God, named Allah, who is infinitely superior to and transcendent from humankind. Allah is viewed as the creator of the universe and the source of all good and all evil. Everything that happens is Allah's will. He is a powerful and strict judge, who will be merciful toward followers depending on the sufficiency of their life's good works and religious devotion. A follower's relationship with Allah is as a servant to Allah.

Though a Muslim honors several prophets, Muhammad is considered the last prophet, and his words and lifestyle are that person's authority. To be a Muslim, one has to follow five religious duties:

I. Repeat a creed about Allah and Muhammad;

II. Recite certain prayers in Arabic five times a day;

III. Give to the needy;

IV. One month each year, fast from food, drink, sex and smoking from sunrise to sunset;

V. Make a pilgrimage once in one's lifetime to worship at a shrine in Mecca.

At death—based on one's faithfulness to these duties —a Muslim hopes to enter Paradise. If not, they will be eternally punished in hell.

====================See Page 2

Title: Connecting with the Divine - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on July 31, 2005, 01:04:37 AM
From The American Tract Society
Labeled Free Distribution

Connecting with the Divine - Page 2


Christians believe in a loving God who has revealed himself and can be personally known in this life. In Christianity the person's focus is not on religious rituals or performing good works, but on enjoying the relationship with God that he intended and growing to know him better.

Faith in Jesus Christ himself, not just in his teachings, is how the Christian experiences joy and a meaningful life. In his life on earth, Jesus did not identify himself as a prophet pointing to God or as a teacher of enlightenment. Rather, Jesus claimed to be God in human form. He performed miracles, forgave people of their sin and said that anyone who believed in him would have eternal life. He made statements like, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness...."1

Christians regard the Bible as God's written message to humankind. In addition to its being a historical record of Jesus' life and miracles, the Bible reveals God's personality, his love and truth, and how one can have a relationship with him.

Christians confidently turn to a wise and powerful God who genuinely loves them. They believe God answers prayer and that life takes on meaning as they live to honor him.

Is there a difference?

In looking at these major belief systems and their views of God, we find tremendous diversity:

    * Hindus 300,000 gods
    * Buddhists no deity
    * New Age they are God
    * Muslims powerful but detached God
    * Christians God is loving and approachable

The world's major religions are each unique. Yet only one affirms that there is a personal God who wants us to know him.

In Hinduism a person is on their own trying to gain release from karma. In New Age a person is working at their own divinity. In Buddhism it is an individual quest at being free from desire. And in Islam, the individual follows religious laws for the sake of paradise after death. In Christianity, you see a personal relationship with a personal God - a relationship that carries over into the next life.


We all are aware of our faults, our sins. God loves us but hates our sin, and he has said that the consequence for our sin is separation from him. But God provided a way for us to be forgiven and to know him. Jesus, the Son of God in human form, took our sin on himself by suffering on a cross and dying in our place. The Bible says, "By this we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us." 2

God is offering us complete forgiveness because of Jesus' death for us. This means forgiveness for all our sins...past, present and future. "This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him."3

Christianity does not require a commitment to a method of self-improvement, meditation, good works or even the Ten Commandments.

Our hope is not in following laws or standards, but in knowing a Savior who fully accepts us. We don't earn our place in heaven by religious efforts or good deeds. He has provided the way for us. Heaven is free.

Would you like to be totally forgiven and come to know God's love for you? It is as simple as praying: "God, please forgive me and come into my heart right now. Thank you, Jesus, for dying for my sins. Thank you for coming into my life as you said you would."

(Endnotes) 1John 8:12 21 John 3:16 31 John 4:9 (NIV)

Article adapted from

Copyright 2005 - American Tract Society


My Note:  I give thanks that this beautiful tract is freely distributed by the American Tract Society.

Title: Father's Love Letter
Post by: nChrist on July 31, 2005, 01:16:23 AM
From The American Tract Society
Labeled Free Distribution

Father's Love Letter - Page 1

Father's Love Letter An Intimate Message from God to You

The words you are about to read are true.
They will change your life if you let them.
For they come from the heart of God.
He loves you.
He is the Father you have been looking for all your life.
He longs for you to come to Him.

This is His love letter to you.

My Child,
You may not know me, but I know everything about you. Psalm 139:1
I know when you sit down and when you rise up. Psalm 139:2
I am familiar with all your ways. Psalm 139:3
Even the very hairs on your head are numbered. Matthew 10:29-31
For you were made in my image. Genesis 1:27
In me you live and move and have your being. Acts 17:28
For you are my offspring. Acts 17:28
I knew you even before you were conceived. Jeremiah 1:4-5
I chose you when I planned creation. Ephesians 1:11-12
You were not a mistake, for all your days are written in my book. Psalm 139:15-16
I determined the exact time of your birth and where you would live. Acts 17:26
You are fearfully and wonderfully made. Psalm 139:14
I knit you together in your mother's womb. Psalm 139:13
And brought you forth on the day you were born. Psalm 71:6
I have been misrepresented by those who donÕt know me. John 8:41-44
I am not distant and angry, but am the complete expression of love. 1 John 4:16
And it is my desire to lavish my love on you. 1 John 3:1
Simply because you are my child and I am your Father. 1 John 3:1
I offer you more than your earthly father ever could. Matthew 7:11
For I am the perfect Father. Matthew 5:48
Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand. James 1:17
For I am your provider and I meet all your needs. Matthew 6:31-33
My plan for your future has always been filled with hope. Jeremiah 29:11
Because I love you with an everlasting love. Jeremiah 31:3
My thoughts toward you are countless as the sand on the seashore. Psalms 139:17-18
And I rejoice over you with singing. Zephaniah 3:17
I will never stop doing good to you. Jeremiah 32:40
For you are my treasured possession. Exodus 19:5
I desire to establish you with all my heart and all my soul. Jeremiah 32:41
And I want to show you great and marvelous things. Jeremiah 33:3
If you seek me with all your heart, you will find me. Deuteronomy 4:29
Delight in me and I will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4
For it is I who gave you those desires. Philippians 2:13
I am able to do more for you than you could possibly imagine. Ephesians 3:20
For I am your greatest encourager. 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
I am also the Father who comforts you in all your troubles. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
When you are brokenhearted, I am close to you. Psalm 34:18
As a shepherd carries a lamb, I have carried you close to my heart. Isaiah 40:11
One day I will wipe away every tear from your eyes. Revelation 21:3-4
And I'll take away all the pain you have suffered on this earth. Revelation 21:3-4
I am your Father, and I love you even as I love my son, Jesus. John 17:23
For in Jesus, my love for you is revealed. John 17:26
He is the exact representation of my being. Hebrews 1:3
He came to demonstrate that I am for you, not against you. Romans 8:31
And to tell you that I am not counting your sins. 2 Corinthians 5:18-19
Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled. 2 Corinthians 5:18-19
His death was the ultimate expression of my love for you. 1 John 4:10
I gave up everything I loved that I might gain your love. Romans 8:31-32
If you receive the gift of my son, Jesus, you receive me. 1 John 2:23
And nothing will ever separate you from my love again. Romans 8:38-39
Come home and I'll throw the biggest party heaven has ever seen. Luke 15:7
I have always been Father and will always be Father. Ephesians 3:14-15
My question is: will you be my child? John 1:12-13
I am waiting for you. Luke 15:11-32

Love, Your Dad
Almighty God

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Title: Father's Love Letter - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on July 31, 2005, 01:18:57 AM
From The American Tract Society
Labeled Free Distribution

Father's Love Letter - Page 2

Finding Our Way Home. We were born cut-off from God because of our sin. (Isaiah 59:2) But God the Father made a way for us to come home through His Son. Jesus bore upon Himself the weight of our sin, nailing it to the cross so that we could be born into His family. (Romans 5:10)

Jesus is The Way to the Father. His resurrection from the dead signaled the victory for us! In John 14:6, Jesus says, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me."

Would You Like to Receive This Gift? All you need to do is to tell God that you trust in His Son. The words below might help you express your thoughts to God. (John 3:16, Romans 6:23)

Father, I'm coming home. Please make me Your child. I turn from my sin and accept Your forgiveness made possible through Jesus Christ's death and resurrection. I place my faith and trust in Jesus alone to save me. Amen.

Adapted from the book, Father's Love Letter, by Barry Adams. Published by Christian Publications, Inc., Camp Hill, PA. Call toll-free 800-233-4443 or visit our website:

Father's Love Letter used by permission Father Heart Communications Copyright 1999-2005

Copyright 2005 - American Tract Society


My Note:  I give thanks that this beautiful tract is distributed freely by the American Tract Society. This tract also makes it plain that Barry Adams, another sweet Christian, made the contribution that makes this tract possible.

Title: The Drawing of the Father
Post by: nChrist on August 03, 2005, 06:02:22 AM
August 2

The Drawing of the Father - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him— Joh_6:44

These Words Spoken in Pity

We get some light on these deep words by remembering the occasion of their utterance. They were spoken rather in pity than in sternness. Our Lord had just been speaking of Himself as the bread which cometh down from heaven. It would have been a bold word to say in any company, but to that company, it seemed like madness. They had never dreamed that One could come from heaven by the ordinary way of human birth. They thought Messiah would descend in glory. Do we not know His father and His mother? Do we not remember Him when He was just a child? It was that which irritated them and made them grumble as these stupendous claims fell on their ears. And it was then that Christ, as if pitying their deadness and half-excusing their disbelief in Him, said, "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him." Now in Joh_6:37 of this chapter, there is a statement which appears very like to this one: "All that the Father giveth me shall come to me." The two are always associated in our thoughts. The one inevitably suggests the other. Yet there is a world of difference in their tone which is well that we should bear in mind. In the one case Christ is gladly confident. He is not disheartened although He is deserted. Let men forsake Him and turn away in anger, ail that the Father giveth Him shall come to Him. But the other is not the utterance of assurance. It is a cry of pity for hearts that were like stone: "No man can come to me except the Father which hath sent me draw him."

You Come to Christ When You Believe on Him

In passing, let me express the earnest hope that we all know what Christ meant by coming to Him. It is one of those vivid and pictorial words that were so congenial to the Master's lips: "Come unto me, all ye that labor"; "Ye will not come unto me that ye might have life"; "No man can come unto me except the Father draw him." Now, had our Lord never looked beyond His earthly ministry, we might have been tempted to take coming literally. We might have thought that Christ, when He said, "Come," spoke of a literal coming to His side. But if there be one thing certain, it is that Christ took a longer view than that. He thought of a coming that would still be possible when He was no longer on the streets of Galilee. Can we now come to Him as Mary came when He was dining in the house of Simon? Can we now come to Him as Jairus came when the keel of His boat was grating on the beach? With His faith in a Gospel that should still be preached when He had gone home to share His Father's glory, Christ thought of something different from that. What then did He actually mean? He has told us that Himself. "I am the bread of life," He said, "he that cometh to me shall never hunger, and he that believeth on me shall never thirst." Clearly, then, in the mind of Jesus, coming and believing were identical; the one was the vivid image of the other. You come to Christ, not by any pilgrimage. You come to Christ when you believe in Him. You come when, both for time and for eternity, all your trust is centered in Him. It is in that sense, and only in that sense, that the words of our text have any meaning— "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him."

This Drawing Does Not Involve Fatalism          

It is then of very great importance that we should understand what this drawing is, and my object in choosing this great text is just to try to make it plain to you. Is it something mysterious and dark, or is it something that fails within our understanding? Is it a special work of the Almighty, or does it blend into our common discipline? Is it something that we may recognize, something which inevitably betrays itself, or may we be subjects of the Father's drawing and all the time be unconscious of it? There are many who have taken this text and made it the excuse for an unworthy and unchristian fatalism. They have made no effort to believe and said they waited the drawing of the Father. I want you to learn how sinful that is, and how opposed to the spirit of the Lord, and how dishonoring to the great thought of Fatherhood which is the thought on which the text is based.

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Title: The Drawing of the Father - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 03, 2005, 06:04:34 AM
The Drawing of the Father - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

It Involves Man's Will; The Father Draws, Not Drags

The first ray of light upon the text is found in the word which Christ employs. He does not talk of the dragging of the Father. He talks deliberately of the Father's drawing. No man is hurried to the feet of Christ as the heifer was hurried to the Jewish altar. No man is pushed there by an almighty arm and in defiance of a protesting will. The Father does not drag. The Father draws. He bids the soul to come in gentle ways. He will have a man come willingly to Christ, or else He will not have him come at all. We may illustrate this meaning of the word from the only other occasion when Christ uses it: "I, if I be lifted up," He said, "will draw all men unto me." And, tell me, what is the drawing of the cross? Is it anything which tramples on our freedom? It is just the appeal to all that is within us of that spectacle of redeeming love. We are not forced to Christ by what we see. We are only appealed to by that wondrous spectacle. It puts to shame all that is bad in us. It woos and wins all that is best in us. And as it is with the drawing of the cross, so is it with the drawing of the Father. It is but the action of appealing love. I do not say it is not irresistible; but I do say it does not seem so. It is as sweet, as natural, as gentle, as the drawing of the sunshine on the earth. There is no pressure of an arresting hand; no force exerted to overpower the will; a man is not conscious that he is being dragged by a power that is mightier than his own. It is that thought which makes it such a peril for a man to await the drawing of the Father. It is not something that will flash in splendor and overpower a man into belief. It is something blended with the daily providence, and wrought into the fabric of the life, and intermingled with the lights and shadows that make the variables of our common day. Just as the sunshine falling on earth draws it into the pageant of the summer, just as the moon falling on the ocean draws it into the fullness of its tides, so not less silently, not less insensibly, does the grace of the Father fall upon the heart and draw it, when it thinks not of it, into readiness for Jesus Christ. That this is the right tone to give the word we may confirm in an interesting way. Christ found this word He used in the Old Testament, and it is illuminative to notice where He found it. There are three books in the Old Testament which are peculiarly the books of tenderness, three books above all others which contain what I might call the wooing note. The one is that mystical book we call The Song; the second is the Book of Jeremiah; the third is Hosea, who in his ruined home had learned the power and the pain of love. It is in these three books, and these alone, that the thought of drawing is found in the Old Testament. "I have loved thee with an everlasting love, therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee." That is the accent of the Song of Solomon; that of Jeremiah and Hosea; and it is that accent you must still preserve when the prophet's word is used by Jesus Christ. He is not thinking, anymore than they, of a power that should be mighty to compel. He is not thinking of any sudden energy that should surprise a man into belief. He is thinking, with His prophetic forerunners, of all that wooing ministry of love which none can recognize except the loved one, and to which even he is often blind.

The Father Draws and Man Comes                            

But now we can go a little farther, for we have the commentary here of Christ Himself. In the verses which succeed out text, He throws His thought into another form. "No man can come unto me," He says, "except the Father which hath sent me draw him." And then immediately He adds, "Every man therefore that hath heard, and learned of the Father, cometh unto me." And so He tells us that the Father's drawing is just an expression for the Father's teaching, "for," says the prophet, "they shall all be taught of God." Now mark you, there are two kinds of teaching: there is an outward and an inward teaching. And it cannot be of the first that Jesus thinks or else these Jews would have believed in Him. If ever anybody had been taught of God, was it not just these men to whom He spoke? And yet they hated Him and crucified Him. A man may have the Scriptures in his hand; he may enjoy the truest spiritual teaching; he may read the name of God across the stars, and yet never may be drawn to Jesus Christ. It is only when that teaching becomes inward and moves the will and kindles the affections that it becomes the drawing of the Father. Christ does not think of a teaching of the head. He rather thinks of a teaching of the heart. He thinks of every providence that chastens us; of every providence that breaks and humbles us. It is by that teaching that a man is drawn and comes to feel his need of a Redeemer and realizes that his only hope is in the fellowship of Jesus Christ. We are not only taught by every craving. Christ means that by every craving we are drawn, by every sorrow and by every joy, by every touch of pain and hour of sadness, by all the love that meets us when we journey, by all the tears when hours of parting come; by all that, we are not only taught; by all that, we are drawn to Him. Clearly, then, our Savior did not mean that we were to sit inactive and just wait. He meant us to find, even this very hour, that the Father is drawing us to Him. He meant that if we only looked within and read our story in the light of God, we should find there today such elements as would prepare us for the feet of Christ. There was that in these Jews that, had they heeded it, would have proved to them the drawing of the Father. There is that in you today, which is undoubtedly the Father's drawing. Only let God interpret it to you and show you what it implies and what it needs, and it will draw you to the feet of Christ.

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Title: The Drawing of the Father - Page 3
Post by: nChrist on August 03, 2005, 06:09:32 AM
The Drawing of the Father - Page 3
by George H. Morrison

Drawing and Responding in Marriage

We may further illustrate what Jesus meant by thinking of our earthly friendships. There is a deep sense in which all human love would be impossible without the Father's drawing. Among all the mysteries with which we are engirded, there is none deeper than the mystery of love. It is the heart reaching to its own, and finding in its own its resting place. Viewed on its earthly side it is the drawing of sympathies that answer one another. Viewed on its heavenly side it is far more than that; it is just the drawing of the Father. Does not one of our oldest proverbs tell us that true marriages are made in heaven? It is not often that our proverbial wisdom lights upon a truth so deep as that. For it just means that when two hearts are knit into a union that only death can sever, it is the drawing of the Father that hath done it. The heart of the mother is drawn towards her child. The heart of the friend is drawn towards his friend. God is busy within us in a thousand ways when He is leading us to recognize our own. And so, when He is leading us to Christ, God is busy with us in a thousand ways, and it is in that preparatory ministry that there lies the drawing of the Father. Our loneliness—that is the Father's drawing; it is His whisper to us that we need a friend. Our weakness—that is the Father's drawing; it is His guidance to sufficient strength. And all our haunting sense of inability and our shame when we have sinned again, all that is but the drawing of the Father to the loving mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ. I believe as stoutly as the sternest Calvinist, that no man can come to Christ except the Father draw him. But I also believe with all my heart that He is drawing every man this very moment. It is not new drawing that men want. It is new vision to behold its meaning. Lord, open men's eyes, that they may see.

In Retrospect, Friendships, Especially with Christ, Were Not the Result of Drifting But of Being Drawn

In closing, I desire to say that this is a truth which is abundantly verified in our experience. As life goes on and its meanings become plainer, our vision also clarifies a little. We stand, as it were, upon a little eminence and see more clearly our path across the heather. And it is then that often looking backwards we can set to our seal that this is true, we were drawn of the Father when we never knew it. Just as our human friendships, when we make them, seem to be often but the child of accident, yet afterwards as we survey it all we recognize that there was more than chance there. So the friendship of the Lord Jesus Christ may also appear to us a casual thing, yet every year that passes makes us surer that our steps were ordered when we knew it not. One of the insights of passing years is to eliminate the thought of accident. They touch as with the light of a great plan what in its hour seemed a happy chance. We come to see in sunshine and in shadow, in sicknesses, in shiftings of our home, the movement of a will that was not ours and that had seen the end from the beginning. So is it, brethren, with that great transaction which seals the covenant between the soul and Christ. It may come suddenly and unexpectedly, and we feel no will in it except our own. Yet as the years go by we trace a change. We waken to a wise and loving leadership. We thought in the passing hour that we were drifting. We now discover that we were being drawn. That strong impression deepens with the years. We become less; the Father becomes more. We realize that we are Christ's today simply and solely because the Father drew us. And so we take this as a word of hope based on the changeless love of Fatherhood, and we believe that now and always, the Father is drawing every human soul.


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Cross and the World
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 03:28:55 AM
August 18

The Cross and the World - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel— Mat_15:24

I, if I be lifted up…will draw all men unto me— Joh_12:32

Christ Came to and for Israel

We have but to read the record of the Gospels, to find confirmation of the former of these texts. The whole activity of Christ on earth shows Him as sent to the lost sheep of Israel. Within the boundaries of Israel He was born, and within the boundaries of Israel He died. With the one exception of the journey here recorded, He never in His maturity left the Jewish land. His twelve disciples were of the Jewish faith; His friends were inhabitants of Jewish homes; His enemies were not the Romans, but His own, to whom He came and they received Him not. For His teaching He sought no other audience than the men and women of the Jewish villages. For His retirement He sought no other solitude an that of the Galilean hills. And all His miracles, with rare exceptions, which were recorded because they were exceptional, were wrought for the comforting of Jewish hearts, and for the drying of tears in Jewish eyes. The whole story of the Gospel, then, is a witness to the truth of our first text. In the fulfilling of His earthly ministry Christ confined Himself to Jewish limits. And He did so because of His assurance, that He was sent to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

Christ, However, Anticipated a Wider Ministry

But as we study the words of our Redeemer, one thing gradually grows very clear. It is that He anticipated a ministry that should be wider than these Jewish limits. I am not thinking just now of any words He spoke after He was risen from the dead. I am thinking only of His recorded utterances in those crowded years before the cross. And what I say is that no reasonable man can study the discourse of the historic Jesus without discovering that He foresaw a ministry which was to be as wide as the whole world. There is, for instance, the second of our texts today—"I will draw all men unto me." There is that beautiful word of an earlier chapter, "Other sheep I have which are not of this fold." There is that utterance at Simon's table, when the woman broke the alabaster box, "Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, this that she hath done shall be told of her." I ask you to observe that these great sayings have stood the test of the most searching criticism. They are so germane to the mind of Christ that they have come triumphant through the fires. And they tell us this, that through the earthly ministry, confined as it was within the house of Israel, Christ had the outlook of an approaching lordship over the nations of mankind.

The Cross and the Worldwide Empire

But these utterances tell us more than that, and to this I specially invite attention. They tell us that in the mind of Jesus His death and His worldwide empire were related. So far as we can learn about the mind of Christ, we can with reverence say this about it. It was when the cross was clearest in His thought that the worldwide empire was most clear to Him. If you will think of the texts which I have cited, and consider the occasion of their utterance, you will understand quite easily what I mean. Take for instance that most beautiful word, "Other sheep I have which are not of this fold." What are the words which immediately precede it? "The good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep." At the very moment when the thought of shepherding kindled the vision of the shepherd's death, at that very moment there flashed upon the Lord the vision of the sheep beyond the fold. Take again the scene at Simon's feast where Jesus spoke of a Gospel for the world. "Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there this deed that she hath done shall be remembered." And what was it that the woman had done under the interpreting eyes of Jesus Christ? She had anointed His body for its burial. In other words that womanly act of hers had spoken to Jesus of His coming death. Over the table where the guests reclined, it had cast the awful shadow of the cross. And it was then, anointed for His burial by an act which no one else could understand, that Christ in vision lifted up His eyes and saw the Gospel preached to the whole world. Clearly, then, Christ looked upon His death as the great secret of a worldwide empire. When the one grew vivid in His thought, there rose on Him the vision of the other. And that to me is a matter to meditate on, as one of the most momentous of all truths, by every man and every woman who is interested in the world empire of the Lord. Now the question is, can we follow out that thought, and see even dimly where the connection lies? It is that which I should like to attempt to do.

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Title: The Cross and the World - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 03:31:15 AM
The Cross and the World - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

The Motive of Missionary Enterprise

In the first place, it is the death of Christ which supplies the motive of missionary enterprise.

We must ever remember that when we speak of the death of Christ, we speak of a death different from our own. Our death is the cessation of activity; Christ's was the crown and climax of His life. "I have power to lay it down," He said, and that is a power no other man has shared. We die when our appointed hour comes, and when the hand of God hath touched us, and we sleep. But Christ never looked upon His death like that, as something inevitable and irresistible. He looked on it as the last free glorious service of a life that had always been a life of love. Here in one gleam, intense and vivid, was gathered up the light of all His years. Here in one action which we name His dying was gathered up the love in which He wrought. And it is just because of the power of that action, concentrating all the scattered rays, that Christ could say, "I, if I be lifted up,…will draw all men unto me." How true this is as a fact of history we see in the story of the Christian Church. There is the closest connection in that story between the death of Christ and missionary zeal. There have been periods in the Church's history when the death of Christ was practically hidden. The message of the cross was rarely preached; the meaning of the cross was rarely grasped. And the Gospel was looked on as a refined philosophy, eminently fitted for the good of men, inculcating a most excellent morality, and in perfect harmony with human reason. We have had periods like that in Scotland, and we have had periods like that in England. God grant that they may never come again with their deadening of true religion. And always when you have such a period, when love is nothing and moral law is everything, you have a period when not a hand is lifted for the salvation of the heathen world. For it is not morality that seeks the world; it is religion centering in love. It is a view of a divine love so wonderful that it stooped to the service of death upon a cross. So always, in evangelical revival, when that has been apprehended in the wonder of it, the passion to tell it out has come again, and men have carried the message to mankind.

And may I say that it is along these lines that the road must lie to a deepening of interest. To realise what it means that Christ died, is to have a Gospel that we must impart. There are many excellent people who, in their secret heart, confess to a very faint interest in missions. They give, and it may be they give generously, and yet in their hearts they know that they are not interested. They know almost nothing about mission-fields, and are never seen at missionary meetings, and take the opportunity to visit a sister church when a missionary is advertised to preach in theirs. With such people I have no lack of sympathy, for I think I understand their position thoroughly. I have the gravest doubt if any good is done by trying excitedly to lash up their interest. But I am perfectly confident that these good people would waken to a new and lively interest, if only they realised a little more the wonder of the love of God in Christ. What think you, my brother and my sister, is the most wonderful thing that ever happened? It is not the kindling of the myriad stars, nor the fashioning of the human eye that it might see them. It is that once the God who is eternal stooped down from heaven and came into humanity, and bore our burdens, and carried our sorrows, and died in redeeming love upon the tree. Once realise what that means, and everything else in the world is insignificant. Once realise what that means, and you must pass it on to other people. And that is the source of missionary zeal—not blind obedience, nor any thoughts of terror, but the passing on of news so wonderful that we cannot—dare not—keep it to ourselves.

The Answer for a Universal Need

In the next place, the death of Christ interprets and answers a universal longing. It meets with perfect satisfaction the deepest need of all the world.

One of the great gains of this age of ours is that it has drawn the world together so. There is now an intermingling of the nations that but a few decades ago was quite impossible. Thanks to the means of transport we possess, and to the need of expansion on the part of nations; thanks to the deathless spirit of adventure, to the gains of commerce and to the march of armies, there is a blending now of the whole earth such as was undreamed of once. Now one result of all that intermingling has been a new sense of the oneness of humanity. No longer do we delight in travellers' tales, such as captivated the Middle Ages. Men push their way into untravelled forests, and they come to us from Arabia and Tibet, and under all that is strange they bring us tidings of the touch of nature that makes the whole world kin. We realise today as men have never done, how God has made all nations of one blood. Deeper than everything that separates, there are common sorrows and elemental hopes. There is one common heart by which we live; one common life in which we share; one common enemy awaiting all, when the pitcher is broken at the fountain.

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Title: The Cross and the World - Page 3
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 03:34:14 AM
The Cross and the World - Page 3
by George H. Morrison

But especially has this oneness of humanity been made evident in the religious life. That has been one incalculable gain of the modern study of comparative religion. It has investigated a thousand rites, and found at the back of them a common longing. It has touched the foundations of a thousand altars, and found they were built upon a common need. It has gathered from Africa, from India, from China, the never-failing story of religion, and always at the very heart of things it has discovered one unchanging element. It is not enough to say that all men have religion. That is now an accepted commonplace. Something far more wonderful and thrilling has been slowly emerging into prominence. It is that under a thousand different rites, from those of Patagonia to those of China, there lies the unquenchable desire of man to get into right relationship with God. Deeper than all sense of gratitude, though gratitude is very often there—deeper than unreasoning terror, though heathen religion is always big with terror deeper than that, this fact stands out today, based on exhaustive and scientific study, that the deepest longing in the soul of man is the longing to get right with God. It is that in the last analysis which explains sacrifice, and where is the heathen tribe that does not sacrifice? It is that which explains the sway of heathen witchcraft, of which the evils can never be exaggerated. The religious life is the deepest life of man, and in that life, over the whole wide world, the one determining and vital question is, how can mortal man get right with God?

My friend, I almost ask your pardon for having taken you so far afield. But you see, I think, the point which I am driving at, and from which there is no possible escape. That very question, so vital to humanity, is the question which the atonement answers. It answers the cry that is rising to the heavens from every heathen rite and heathen altar. It tells men in language that a child can grasp, yet with a depth that angels cannot fathom, how sinful man by an appointed sacrifice can be put right with the eternal God. I believe with all my soul in educational missions, but at the heart of missions is more than education. I believe with all my soul in medical missions, but at the heart of missions there is more than healing. Christ never said, "My teaching shall draw all men," nor yet, "My healing power shall draw all men"; He said, "I, if I be lifted up, shall draw all men, and this spake He of the death that He should die." That means that in the atoning death there is the answer to man's deepest need. It means that the deepest cry of all humanity is answered in the message of the cross. And I venture to say that all we have learned today in the modern study of comparative religion, corroborates, and authenticates, and seals that certainty upon the lips of Jesus.

The Necessary Step before the Comforter Could Come

Then, lastly, we have the thought that the death of Christ has liberated His influence. It has opened the window of the ark, if I might put it so, that the dove might fly abroad over the waters. "It is expedient for you that I go away," He said, "for if I go not away the Comforter cannot come." Now the Lord is that Spirit, says the apostle—it is that same Jesus glorified and liberated. So by the lifting up upon the cross Christ was set free from local limitation, to pass into a spiritual ministry that should be co-extensive with the world. No longer can any village of far Galilee claim the present monopoly of Christ. No longer can loving hearts in Bethany say, "He is our guest and ours only for tonight." He is at present now by the lake shores of Africa as He is within the house of God where you worship—because He lived and died. We often talk of the story of the cross as if in that story lay the world's redemption. But I beg of you to remember that while that is true, it is far from being all the truth. Christ spoke not a word of the story of the cross. He said, I—persisting through the cross—I, the living Christ, will draw the world—I whom death is powerless to hold. In other words, when our missionaries go forth, they go with something more than a sweet story. They go with Him of whom the tale is told, so wonderful, so unspeakable, so moving. They go with Him who, having tasted death, is now alive and lives for evermore, and who is able to save unto the uttermost all who come unto God by Him.


By George H. Morrison

Title: Seeing Jesus Is Seeing God
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 04:16:20 AM
August 19

Seeing Jesus Is Seeing God
by George H. Morrison

He that seeth me seeth him that sent me— Joh_12:45

Utterances of Transcendent Importance

That these words are of profound importance we may gather from two considerations. The one is that our Savior cried them (Joh_12:44). As a rule our Savior did not cry nor lift up His voice in the streets. But now and then, in some exalted hour, the Gospels tell us that He cried (Joh_7:37). And in every instance when He cried, we have words that take us to the very heart of things. Also, remember that in these verses we have our Lord's last public sermon. From the beginning of chapter thirteen onwards our Lord is in seclusion with His own. And we may be certain that every word He uttered in His final and farewell discourse would be of infinite significance.

Does God Meet Man's Need?

We recognize that infinite significance when we face the problem of our faith today. Our problem is not to believe there is a God, but to be sure that He answers to our highest thought of Him. We may justly and seriously question if any man be really an atheist. Some think they are, in moments of recoil; others assert it on street corners. But it seems to me that the thought of God is intermingled with our deepest being, as the sunshine is intertangled with the daffodils which are making the world beautiful. Our difficulty is not to believe there is a God. The atheist has been replaced by the agnostic. Our real difficulty centers in His character—is He equal to our highest thought of Him? For when life is difficult, and ways are shadowed, the soul can never have quietness and confidence unless the Rock be "higher than I."

Is There Any Cruelty in God?

This difficulty is profoundly felt in the modern study of the world of nature. "I find no proof in nature," wrote Huxley once to Kingsley, "of what you call the Fatherhood of God." Nature is quick with whisperings of God as every lover of her knows. That was one reason why our Savior loved her and haunted the places where the lilies were. But no one can seriously study nature without finding there elements of cruelty, and at once the thoughtful mind begins to ask, "Is there, then, cruelty in God?" If there be, He may be still "the Rock," but He is not "the Rock that is higher than I." We never can trust Him in an entire surrender if there be a shadow of cruelty in His nature. And that is the difficulty of many students now, not to credit the existence of a God, but to believe that He is higher than our highest.

Is There Any Injustice in God?

Or, again, we turn to human life, eager to find God in human life. That is a perfectly reasonable inquiry, for "in Him we live and move and have our being." Now, tell me, when we turn to human life are there not things in it that look like gross injustices — injustices that do not spring from character nor from any harvesting of sin? And if man be not responsible for these, at once the thinking mind begins to ask, "Is it God, then, who is responsible for these?" Granted that He is, God may still exist. Atheism is an illogical conclusion. But granted that He is, how can we ever love Him with our whole soul and strength and mind? If in Him in whom we have our being there be the faintest suspicion of injustice, we never can trust Him in utter self-surrender. Take everything you find in life and nature and transfer it to the heart upon the throne, and how extraordinarily difficult it is to believe that the Rock is higher than ourselves. And yet unless it be infinitely higher, there is no help for us when the golden bowl is broken nor when the daughters of music are brought low.

God Is What Jesus Is

And then we hear the word of the Lord Jesus, "He that beholdeth me beholdeth him that sent me." Or, as He said to Philip only a little later, "He that hath seen me hath seen the Father." We are not commanded to take all we find in nature or in life and carry it up to the heart upon the throne. "What I do thou knowest not now, but thou shalt know hereafter." But we are commanded, over and over again, to take everything we find in Jesus, and by that to read the character of God. Just as a little moorland pool will reflect all the glory of the heavens, so Christ, in the limits of His humiliation, is the mirror of the heart of God. That is what the writer to the Hebrews means when, at the beginning of his magnificent epistle, he calls Christ the "reflection of His glory" (Heb_1:3). That is a very splendid act of faith in this seemingly unjust and cruel world. But that is the act of faith which marks the Christian. We by Him do believe in God (1Pe_1:21). If he who hath seen Christ hath seen the Father, then we can trust the Father to the uttermost, and leave all other difficulties to be cleared when the day breaks and the shadows flee away.


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Washing of the Disciples' Feet
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 04:29:11 AM
August 20

The Washing of the Disciples' Feet - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

He poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples, feet and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded— Joh_13:5

Jesus' Love for His Disciples

From this point onward in the Gospel of St. John, we have the private communion of Jesus with His disciples. When one is leaving for a distant country, and has transacted all necessary business with the outside world, he is fain to spend the few remaining hours in the sweet intimacy of the family circle. So Jesus, when the shadows of His departure stole around Him, dwelt in loving communion with His own. It is to this that John is pointing when he says, "Having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end" (Joh_13:1). He does not mean until the end of life. He means unto the end and limit of all love. Christ's love, like His life, is endless and unchangeable. There is no yesterday and no tomorrow in its depths. But in the latter hours of that now shadowed communion, there was such outwelling of the eternal passion, that John felt that its tides were at the full. Christ always loved them; now He loved them utterly. That was the thought borne in on the disciple. Yet mark that this uttermost showing of Jesus' love did not lie in unchecked and passionate avowals, but in an action of the lowliest service, and in teaching that would make the loved ones strong. The noblest love must always keep its secrets. It becomes weak when it protests too much. The love of Jesus is the perfect pattern of what the love of every young man and woman ought to be. Note, too, that in this little prologue (Joh_13:1-3), there is the note of knowledge as well as of love. The proverb has it that love is blind; but the love of Jesus was very far from that. He knew that the hour was come that He should depart (Joh_13:1). He knew that the Father had given all things into His hands (Joh_13:3). He knew who should betray Him (Joh_13:11). It was under the illumination of that knowledge that Jesus washed the feet of John and Judas. Does not that augment the wonder of the deed? Does it not set the crown upon its lowliness? Though He was rich, yet for our sakes He became poor, that we through His poverty might be made rich.

A Lesson on Humility

While supper, then, was proceeding, on the night before the Passover [for so we ought to translate it, instead of "supper being ended" (Joh_13:2)], Jesus rose from the table to perform this deed. Now the customary time for washing the feet of guests—and where men wore sandals and the heat was sweltering it was a very grateful and a very gracious practice—the customary moment for cleansing the feet was not during the mealtime, but before it. Here, then, there had been some little delay. The service had been omitted on this occasion. And I feel certain it had been omitted because no disciple was lowly enough to offer it. Probably it was about this very hour that they were disputing who should be the greatest (Luk_22:24). They were men like ourselves (we may thank God for it), and they had almost everything yet to learn. And was Peter, who had been arguing for his precedence, going to stoop down and wash the feet of John? And was John (who had his own thoughts about the traitor) going to play the servant to Iscariot? It was intolerable. It was impossible. They were willing to do much, but never that. So with hot feet (and hotter hearts) they went to supper, and Jesus saw it all and loved them still. Then Jesus rose and laid aside His garments. The bitterest rebukes are deeds, not words. He poured the water into a basin. He took the towel and girded Himself for service. And I think that when John, in his revelation on Patmos, saw the Son of Man girt with a golden girdle (Rev_1:13), he would recall this girding at the supper. So Jesus (whose own feet were to be pierced so soon) washed His disciples' feet, and dried them. Did He say to Himself, as He washed the feet of Thomas, "These feet will be beautiful upon the distant mountains"? Or did He say, as He dried the feet of Judas, "These will soon lead the mob into the Garden"? I do not know. But I am sure that in the stern and stormy years to come, not one of the eleven would ever have his tired feet washed, but he would recall this memorable hour.

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Title: The Washing of the Disciples' Feet - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 04:32:55 AM
The Washing of the Disciples' Feet - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

One Major and Many Minor Cleansings

Meanwhile Jesus was approaching Peter, and the eleven were wondering what Peter would do. Perhaps Peter had been the noisiest in asserting that they would never catch him playing the foot-washer. And now, what a tumult there was in Peter's breast. What a tangle of good and evil in the man. All that was best in him (his reverence for his Lord), and all that was worst in him (his pride), made him draw up his foot as if the Lord's hand had stung it. But there was one thing that was all the world to Peter. It was the friendship of his glorious Master. And his Master (who is the unrivalled Master of the heart) touched, with His exquisite tenderness, that chord. "If I wash thee not, thou has no part with me." The very suggestion stabbed like a dagger. Peter thrust out his hands and bent down his head to Jesus: "Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head." Then Jesus teaches the lesson of the bath (Joh_13:10). If a man has bathed, and then has soiled his feet, must he plunge his whole body into the bath again? Will he not be truly cleansed (after his bath) if the particular defilement be removed? So, once and for all, a man is justified; once and for all, he is regenerated. And it is the stain here and the defilement there (contracted on the hot and dusty highway) that the risen Savior cleanses every sunset.

Deferred Understanding / Conditional Partnership / Humble Service

Now let us note three lessons on the story. First, we may not understand Christ at the time (Joh_13:7). There is not a child but must do a hundred tasks that she cannot see the worth and meaning of. There is not a mother but might croon to her little baby, "What I do, thou knowest not now." Do not wonder, then, if Christ acts as our mothers do. All children live by faith and not by sight. Next notice Christ's condition of having part with Him. "If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me." It is not, "If I teach or lead thee not"—far less is it, "If I love thee not." The one condition of partnership with Jesus is to be cleansed by His Spirit and His blood. Last, note Christ's call to loving and lowliest service. That is the center and sum of the whole story. "If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet, ye also ought to wash one another's feet" (Joh_13:14). We sometimes talk of the language of the hands. And sometimes of the language of the eyes. But I think there is also a language of the feet, and I could translate the whole Gospel into it. For first comes Jesus (when we are bowed with sin) and He says, "Son of man, stand upon thy feet." And then comes Jesus (when we wish to serve Him), and He says to us, "Wash one another's feet." And then in the morning, when we are His forever, it is at His feet that we shall cast our crowns.


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Loneliness of Sin
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 04:51:47 AM
August 21

The Loneliness of Sin - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

He then having received the sop went immediately out: and it was night— Joh_13:30

He Made His Bed in Hell

What first strikes us here is the utter loneliness of Judas. No word-painting, however vivid, could give a deeper impression of that than these few words of John: "He ... went immediately out: and it was night." Within, there was light and gladness, and the richest fellowship this world had ever known. For Christ was there, and John was leaning upon Jesus' bosom, and the talk was on high and holy themes that evening. Outside was fierce hostility. Outside was dark. And no man drove out Judas. No push and curse hurried him to the door. It was the momentum of his own heart and life that impelled him to choose the darkness rather than the light.

Shall we follow Judas into the dark street? He turns and looks, and the light is gleaming from the window of the upper chamber. He hurries on, and the streets are not empty yet. A band of young men, like himself, goes singing by. The sounds of evening worship come stealing from the houses. And everything that tells of love, and breathes of fellowship, and speaks of home, falls like a fiery rain on Judas' heart. The loneliness of Judas was intolerable. He had made his bed in hell. A friend of mine was once preaching on that text in the Assembly Hall in Edinburgh. And when he left the hall and was stepping homewards, a young man rushed across the street and grasped him by the arm and cried, "Minister, minister, I have made my bed in hell," and disappeared. And the lonely misery of that cry will ring in my friend's ears till his dying day. There was a loneliness in it like that in Judas. He was estranged, apart. "He then having received the sop went immediately out: and it was night."

In a Sense Everybody Is Lonely

There is a sense in which every person is lonely. Each has his different road, his different trial, his different joy; and these differences are invisible barriers between us, so that even in fellowship we walk apart. We say we know that woman thoroughly, and we believe we do, till someday there comes a new temptation to her, or a new chance to be heroic, and all our reckoning are falsified, and there are depths our plummet never sounded. I cannot utter forth all that I am. Gesture, speech, even music are but rude interpreters. The dullest has his dream he never tells. The very shallowest has his holy ground. There is an isolation of the soul that brings the note of pathos into history, and makes me very reluctant to judge my friend, and leads me to the very feet of Christ.

In a Sense Christ Was Lonely

For there is a deep sense in which Christ was lonely too. And it is strange that on the night of the betrayal, perhaps the two loneliest figures in the world were the sinful disciple and his sinless Lord. But oh, the world of difference between the two! Christ lonely because He was the Son of God, bearing His cross alone and going out into the glory. And Judas lonely because he was the son of perdition, with every harmony destroyed by sin, and going out into the night. Now towards which figure are you making, friend? For towards one or the other your feet are carrying you. There is a loneliness upon the mountain top. There is a loneliness in death and in the grave. And the one is the isolation of the climbing heart, and the other the isolation of the lost. Towards which are you headed? Is it "To the hills will I lift up mine eyes" or "The wages of sin is death"?

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Title: The Loneliness of Sin - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 04:54:07 AM
The Loneliness of Sin - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

Sin Separates

This, then, is one continual effect of sin. In every shape and form, in every age and country, it intensifies the loneliness of life. We talk of social sins. All sin is ultimately anti-social. We hear of comradeship's based upon common vices. All vice in the long run grinds the very thought of comradeship to powder. Sin isolates, estranges, separates; that is its work. It is the task of God ever to lead us to a richer fellowship. It is the work of sin, hidden but sure, to make us lonelier and more lonely till the end. From all that is best, and worthiest, and purest, it is the delight of sin to separate. And I want to touch on the three great separations that sin brings, making life a lonely thing.

Sin Separates Man from His Ideal

First, then, sin separates man from his ideal. When I have an ideal, I can never be quite lonely. When I have the vision beckoning me on, when I have something to live for and to struggle for higher than coin or food, there is a fervor in my common day, and a quiet enthusiasm for tomorrow, that are splendid company for my secret heart. And even if my ideal be a dream, it is so. In the famous battle between the clans on the North Inch of Perth, rendered immortal in the story of Sir Walter Scott, you will remember how the old chieftain Torquil sent out his sons to fight for Hector. And as one son after another fell under the smiting blows of Hal of the Wynd, the old chief thundered out, "Another for Hector," and another of his sons stepped forward to the battle. And they were all slain, every one of them, for Hector—and Hector was a coward. Let the ideal be a dream, yet men will fight for it; and fighting, the heart forgets its loneliness.

And the work of sin has been to separate the world from its ideals—to blot out the vision and to say to men, Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die. Sin lays the emphasis on what I see. Sin holds me back from what I would be, and binds me a prisoner to what I am. Until, at last, through years of weary failure, all that we hoped and longed to be is gone, and the beckoning hands have vanished, and the vision is fled, and we are alone with our own poor selves. Sin separates a man from his ideal. Judas had his ideal once, but the devil entered him, and the ideal died out; and from that hour Judas drew apart.

Sin Separates Man from Man

Not only does sin separate man from his ideal, it separates man from man. When Cain slew Abel, he became an outcast. When David fell, he had to fly. When Peter denied Christ, he went out and wept bitterly. Sin broke life's ties for them, sundered the bonds that bound them to their fellows. Read over every narrative of sin within the Bible, and underneath the outward form of it—it may be passion, envy, treachery, revenge—you will detect, from Genesis to Revelation, the sundering of ties between man and man.

And sin is always doing that. There is not a passion, not a lust or vice, but mars and spoils the brotherhood of life, and tends to the loneliness of individual souls. God meant us to be friends. God has established numberless relationships. And God is righteousness and God is love, and the Spirit of righteousness and love inspires them all. And sin has been unrighteous from the first, and shall be cold and loveless till the end. O sin, thou severing and separating curse! There is no tie so tender but my vice will snap it. There is no bond so strong but sin will shatter it. It separates the father from his child; it sunders hearts; it creates distances within the home, till the full harmonies of life are lost, and the deep fellowships of life impossible. And the world is lonelier because of sin.

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Title: The Loneliness of Sin - Page 3
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 04:58:11 AM
The Loneliness of Sin - Page 3
by George H. Morrison

And Jesus Christ knew that. Christ saw and felt sin's separating power. And so the Gospel, that rings with the note of brotherhood, centers in Calvary upon the fact of sin. The social gospel is but a shallow gospel, false to the truth and alien from Christ, unless it roots itself in the divine forgiveness and the inspiring power of the Holy Ghost. The poet Whittier tells a story of the Rabbi Nathan, who long lived blamelessly but fell at last, and his temptation clung to him in spite of his prayers and fastings. And he had a friend, Rabbi Ben Isaac, and he felt that his sin had spoiled the friendship. But he would go to him and speak to him and tell him all. And when they met, the two embraced each other; till Rabbi Nathan, remembering his sin, tore himself from his friend's arms and confessed. It was the separating power of sin. But when Rabbi Ben Isaac heard his words, he confessed that he too had sinned, and he asked his friend to pray for him as Rabbi Nathan had asked himself. And there in the sunset, side by side, they knelt and each prayed with his whole heart for the other. "And when at last they rose up to embrace, each saw God's pardon in his brother's face."

Sin, separation—pardon, brotherhood; it is the order of the universe and God.

Sin Separates Man from God

And so sin separates a man from his ideal and a man from men. But the most awful separation of all, the one that reaches the very heart of loneliness, is this: sin separates a man from God.

I can never be lonely in God's fellowship. When I detect His glory in the world, and trace His handiwork in field and sunset; when I recognize His voice in conscience, when I feel the power of His love in Christ; "there is society where none intrudes," there is the sweetest company in solitude; and I may dwell alone, but I can never be a lonely man. "For me to live is Christ," said the apostle; and the friendship of God was so intense for him, that even in the prison at Philippi he had society.

But from the first it has been sin's great triumph to separate the soul from God; and the deepest loneliness of sin is this, that it blinds me to One whom not to see is death, and bars me from the fellowship of Him whose friendship is of infinite value to my heart. If in the sky and sea, if in the call of duty, if in the claims of men, if in the love of Christ, if in all these I see and hear no God. this is a lonely world. And sin has blinded me, and made lonely, as the prodigal was lonely when far from his father and father's home. Shall I arise and go to Him tonight? Shall I return by the way of Calvary to God? I have been separated from holiest and the best. I have been living far from goodness and from God. But -

Just as I am, without one plea,
But that Thy blood was shed for me,
And that Thou bidd'st me come to Thee,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!
—Charlotte Elliott


By George H. Morrison

Title: Tribulation and the Untroubled Heart
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 05:13:58 AM
August 22

Tribulation and the Untroubled Heart - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions— Joh_14:1-2

He Speaks Peace in the Midst of Tribulation

There are few more profitable studies than that of comparing spiritual things with spiritual. In the light of this, I should like to compare our text with that of Joh_16:33 —"In the world ye shall have tribulation." In certain selected seasons of our life it is easy to keep the heart untroubled. There are days in life, as in the world of nature, when everything is radiant and serene. But when our Lord says, "Let not your heart be troubled," He is not thinking of such days as that, as is evident from our texts. Tribulation is a spacious word. It comprehends a largeness of experience. It embraces everything from common worry up to fierce and bitter persecution. And it is in lives familiar with all that, and moving in an atmosphere like that, that our Lord looks for the untroubled heart. He is not legislating for recluses. He is not counseling such as live in shelter. He is speaking to men who are thoroughly familiar with the "slings and arrows of outrageous fortune." It is to them He says, in that quiet way of His, which in its quietness carries the ring of sovereignty, "Let not your heart be troubled."

Jesus Promises a Peaceful Heart, Not an Untroubled Life

From this we gather that in our Lord's intention great emphasis is to be laid on the word heart. And when we turn to the Greek we find that this is so, for the word heart is put in the last place. Our Lord does not call us to an untroubled life. His own life was very far from that. He never asks us to shirk responsibilities, nor to rid ourselves of duties or of cares. But He wants us, as we move through life, playing our part and shouldering our burdens, to have a kind of interior tranquillity. In the world we may have tribulation, and the world for each of us is just our own environment; we may have dark anxieties in business; we may have a heavy load of care at home. But through all that, however hard and worrying, we are to move with a quiet undisturbedness, if we are to live as He would have us do. On the circumference may be a score of frets: these frets are never to reach into the center. Whatever the noise of battle in the field, the soul is to be garrisoned with peace. It is of that interior and sweet serenity that the Lord is thinking when He says, "Let not your heart be troubled."

Three Things Necessary: A Quiet Faith in God

For this undisturbedness, He tells us, there are three things which are necessary. The first of them is a quiet faith in God. If He be the God of Abraham and of Isaac, then He is the God of individuals. He does not deal with us upon the scale of thousands; He deals with us upon the scale of one. And our Lord means that to recognize that dealing, and to trust Him, often in extreme opposition to the senses, is one great secret of interior peace. If trials be only the bludgeoning of fate, if things that meet us be only chance occurrences, it is incredibly hard for common men and women to be victoriously serene within. But the moment we say, "This thing is of God," however dark and inscrutable it be, then the birds start singing in the trees. If underneath are the everlasting arms, if not a sparrow can fall without our Father, if He who sees the end from the beginning is ordering everything in perfect wisdom, however hard life be, or unintelligible, there comes a radiant quietness at the center, and in that quietness we overcome the world. We are not here to be beaten. We are here, the weakest of us, to be more than conquerors. A deep faith in the sovereignty of God overthrows the tyranny of things. All of which our blessed Savior knew so well, from His immediate communion with the Father, that He could say, "Let not your heart be troubled."

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Title: Tribulation and the Untroubled Heart - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 05:18:57 AM
Tribulation and the Untroubled Heart - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

Faith in Jesus Christ

The next secret of the untroubled heart is a strong faith in the Lord Jesus. To trust Him fully is to be at rest. One is ready to think that when we follow Christ there is going to be exemption from life's hardships. But discipleship gives no exemptions—in the world ye shall have tribulation. Discipleship may not remove the trouble, but it gives such a new setting to it all, that the interior disquiet departs, and there comes the peace that passes understanding. Through Him we get a grip of God that was simply impossible before. Walking with Him, we learn the love of God with a fullness hitherto unknown. Looking to Him, so radiant and restful, under the very shadow of the cross, we find His spirit entering into us. When we do that, life may not grow easier. The thorn in the flesh may not be taken away. Burdens may weigh heavy on us still, and uncongenial tasks be very irksome. What is given is not a tranquil world, nor is there any promise or a tranquil life—what is given is the tranquil heart. We lose the fearfulness of manhood and reach the happy confidence of childhood. We have a Friend beside us in the darkest mile. We have a Savior who can save unto the uttermost. All of which, in the deep places of our being, unseen by any human eye, ushers in a certain shining peacefulness which the world can never take away.

A Living Faith in the Beyond

The last secret of the untroubled heart is a living faith in the beyond. "In my Father's house are many mansions ... I go to prepare a place for you." There every question will be answered, and every chastisement reveal its loving-kindness. There we shall reach the crowning and completion of all we have tried to do and failed to do. There these partings, which were so very bitter that for a time they almost wrecked our faith in God, will be justified in the gladness of reunion. Our light afflictions, which are but for a moment, will work for us an exceeding weight of glory. We shall arrive, and arriving understand. Heaven will make perfect our imperfect life. It was because our blessed Savior lived and died in this divine assurance that He said to His disciples, and says still, "Let not your heart be troubled."


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Great Affirmation
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 05:30:31 AM
August 23

The Great Affirmation
by George H. Morrison

In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you— Joh_14:2

Christ Knew about Death; Socrates Only Speculated

It is not by any amplified detail that these words so appeal to human hearts. It is rather by the quiet, assured confidence with which the Savior speaks of the beyond. In the whole of literature there is but one scene worthy to be compared with this. It is where Plato tells of the last hours of Socrates in prison before he drank the poison. I know few things more admirably fitted to reveal the preeminence of Christ than a comparison of these two incidents. Like Christ, Socrates is going to die. Like Christ, his thoughts run on immortality. He discusses it with the friends who come to visit him; he speculates, he argues, and he wonders. What a perfect and stupendous contrast between that and the attitude of Christ. Socrates speculates about a life unknown. Christ speaks of a life that He has known, a realm as real and familiar to Him as my study is to me. It is not what He says so much; rather it is the tone in which He says it that has reached the heart and comforted humanity and given it an anchor for the soul. Where others speculate, the Savior knows. Where others question, He is quietly sure. Where others see but dimly in the shadows, He sees with the certainty of God. And all this on the night of His betrayal, when all that He had lived for seemed in ruins, and nothing seemed to lie before Him but a grave.

Man's Instinct for Immortality

These great words of Jesus corroborate the longings of the heart. All that we crave and hope for in the deeps here is countersigned by the Lord Jesus. Deep and ineradicable is the instinct of man for immortality, witnessed in every age, in every country, in every religion. Even when men deny it with their lips, still do they confess it with their lives, for life has its arguments no less than intellect. By the powerlessness of the whole world to satisfy the poorest heart; by the cargoes we all have on board of things that are not wanted for the voyage; by the passion for truth, the craving for perfection, the glimmering of ideals we never reach, man stretches out his hands to immortality. Whoever loved without longing for forever? Deep affection postulates eternity. Love does not want a year or a millennium. Love cries for immortality. And now comes Christ and looks upon mankind and sees the secret hunger of their souls and says, "If it were not so, I would have told you."

There are beliefs that influence life but little, like the old belief that the sun went round the earth. We may cling to them, or we may give them up, with little difference to conduct. But there are other beliefs that touch and mold and color every action of the common day, and among these is the belief in immortality. In the light of it everything is altered. Altered is our outlook on the world. Altered is the discipline of life, and the import of the chastisements of heaven. Love is different, and hope is different; duty gains august and awful sanction if that instinct of immortality be true. Changed is the face of suffering, of infirmity, of weakness, and of pain. Changed is the loneliness of dying; changed the horrid darkness of the grave. And Christ says, "Children, do you think one instant that if that were an error I would let you keep it? If it were not so, I would have told you. Believe if you like that the sun goes round the earth. That does not matter. I shall not interfere. You may be Mine; you may be washed and sanctified though you believe that the sun goes round the earth. But that deep instinct for immortal life affects profoundly everything you do, and if it were a deception I would have told you."

"I Would Have Told You So"

He would have told us because He loves us and cannot bear to see His own deceived. He would have told us though it almost broke His heart to see the vanishing of hopes and dreams. He would have told us because He was the Truth and refused to let His people live and die under a hope that was the devil's falsehood. Christ corroborates our deepest longing for an immortal life that shall be personal. And He does it in His own quiet way, confidently, with perfect, full assurance. No wonder, then, that this is the favorite chapter with millions of the human race. No wonder that when Lockhart read it to Sir Walter, his big heart was rested and was comforted. No wonder that in Margaret Ogilvy's Bible the pages would fall open at this place, and when she could not read, she stooped and kissed it.


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Way, the Truth, the Life
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 05:44:19 AM
August 24

The Way, the Truth, the Life - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life— Joh_14:6

Love Prepares a Welcome

No one was more ready than Jesus to detect the anxieties of those He loved. We picture Him, as He taught the twelve, watching intently the expression on their faces to learn how far His words were understood. Jesus had noted, then, tokens of heart distress (Joh_14:1). The disciples felt His departure like a torture. And it was then that He consoled them with such simple and glorious speech that all Christendom is the debtor to their agony. They thought that His death was an unforeseen calamity. Christ taught them it was the path of His own planning. They thought that heaven was very far away. Christ taught them it was but another room in the great home of whose many mansions this beautiful world was one. He was not stepping out into the dark. He was passing from one room to another in the house. But the mightiest encouragement of all came when He told them, "I go to prepare a place for you." This, then, was the purpose of His going, that love might have all things ready when they arrived. When a child is born here, love has all things ready for it. It will be the same when we awaken in eternity. When a boy or girl comes home from the boarding-school, has not some heart at home been busy in preparation? There is someone at the station, and the bedroom is arranged, and the lights are lit, and the table is spread, and all day there has been happy excitement in the home because James or Mary is coming home tonight. So Jesus says, "I go to prepare a place for you. I go to have all things ready for your coming." And though there are depths in these words we cannot fathom and mysteries we cannot understand, they mean at least that love is getting ready to give the children a real welcome home.

For Wanderers in the Night: I Am the Way

Then Jesus utters the Via Veritas Vita: and first of all He says, "I am the way." It was the very word that the disciples wanted, for they all felt like wanderers that night. Do you know what it is like to lose the road? Did you ever, when out walking across the fields, find the track through the heather grow faint and disappear? There was a helplessness like that in the disciples when Jesus announced that He was soon to leave them. So far, they had all walked with Jesus. Now, at the cross, that pathway seemed to cease. We can hardly grasp the depth of comfort in it when they heard that Christ was to be the Way forevermore. It was in Him they were to fight and conquer. It was in Him they were to live and die. It was in Him they were to reach the glory and stand in the presence of the Father at the end. They felt there was a new and living way. Among the wonders of the old Roman people were the roads they made from end to end of Europe. And the Roman cities are in ruins now, and their palaces and their temples are destroyed, but men are still walking on the Roman roads. So Jesus, our Redeemer, is still the Way. A thousand things have gone, but that remains. It is through His death, and His rising from the dead, and through our daily fellowship with Him that we walk heavenward and reach home at last.

He Is the Truth That Sheds Light on Darkness

Then Jesus says, "I am the truth." He does not say, observe, I speak the truth. There was a deeper meaning in His mind than that. I hope that every child will speak the truth; yet every child, as his experience grows, will discover with shame how untrue he is at heart. Christ is the sum and center of all truth. Where Christ is not, there is a false note always. And one of the great joys of knowing Jesus is the sweet assurance that truth is ours at last. Before the discovery of the law of gravitation, there were a thousand facts that no man could explain. There was no key to them. There was no plan in them. They could never be gathered into a worthy system. But when the great truth of gravitation was discovered—so simple, so universal, so sublime—a flood of light fell on the darkness, and disorder became order everywhere. And it is just so when we discover Jesus. That truth sheds light upon a thousand facts. Things that were quite inexplicable once—sorrows and joys and hopes and fears and haunting—become intelligible through this great discovery. Did not some one say that if you would find the truth you must seek for it at the bottom of a deep well? The glory of the truth that is in Jesus is that it is found in no dark well, but on the way. Quid est veritas? asked jesting Pilate. And in one of the best anagrams the world has ever had, the answer is given, Est vir qui adest.

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Title: The Way, the Truth, the Life - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 05:48:23 AM
The Way, the Truth, the Life - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

He Is the Source of Life

Then lastly Jesus says, "I am the life." In Thackeray's great story, Vanity Fair, we read of Amelia Osborne and her baby George. And Thackeray, speaking of the baby, says, "How his mother nursed him and dressed him and lived upon him need not be told here. This child was her being." That is a little picture of the way in which one person can be the life of another. It helps us to understand what Jesus meant when He said to the disciples, "I am the life." There is no book in any literature so filled with the message of life as the New Testament. If there is one word that sums up the Gospel, it is life. And here we are taught that that life is in Jesus Christ. He is the source of it. It is treasured in Him. And there is no way to gain it and to keep it but by trusting and by loving Him.

I cannot solve mysterious things,
That fill the schoolmen's thoughts with strife;
But oh! what peace this knowledge brings—
Thou art the Life!
Hid in thy everlasting deeps,
The silent God His secret keeps.
The Way, the Truth, the Life, Thou art!
This, this I know; to this I cleave;
The sweet, new language of my heart—
"Lord, I believe."
I have no doubt to bring to Thee;
My doubt has fled, my faith is free!


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Ladder of Promise
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 06:01:33 AM
August 25

The Ladder of Promise - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

I will love him, and will manifest myself to him .... we will come unto him, and make our abode with him— Joh_14:21-23

The Ascending Scale of Promise

Out of all the riches of these verses, let us take what the Lord says about Himself. Let us select the words He uses of Himself. We may not disentangle in experience the acting of the Father and the Son, but often we may disengage in thought what we cannot disentangle in experience. So here we may reverently lay aside, in thought, what the Lord says about the Father and think only of what He says about Himself. When we do that, how beautiful it grows! We see a gradually ascending scale of promise. We see the Master adding thought to thought till He reaches at last a magnificence of climax. And all this in glorious response to the great waves of doubt and depression which must have rolled over the hearts of His disciples. Let us try, then, to view this ladder of promise from their standpoint.

His Departure Did Not Separate Them from His Love

I take it that the primary dread within their hearts was that, departing, He would cease to love them. He was going away far beyond their presence, and His love would be nothing but a memory. So long as He had companied with them, His love had made all the difference in the world. It had wrapped them round and sheltered them. It had been their refuge and their tower. Now He was about to leave them—to pass over into another realm—and that love would be nothing but a memory. They knew perfectly that for full rich life something more than memory is needed. Left with memories of love and nothing more, how could they be strong to face the future? And then the Lord said (for He knows our thoughts), "Children, I will love you, in the future just as in the past." His love was not to cease when He was slain. It was not to cease when He went home to heaven. It was to be as real, as watchful, and as comforting as in the dear dead days beyond recall. What a joyful message for these poor disciples aware that something awful was impending, dreading the bitter thought of separation!

His Love Would Manifest Itself to Them

Then would follow another wave of doubt: He will love us, but shall we ever know it? Separated from us and far away in glory, if He loves us shall we be conscious of it? Many a congregation loves its minister, but it never tells him of that love. Many a husband loves his wife, but the years go by and the husband never utters it. And I suppose the disciples, in that parting season when their Lord assured them He would love them still, fell to doubting if they would ever know it. When He was with them, they knew it every hour. He showed His love in innumerable ways. Now He was going home, and though He loved them still, would there be any apprehension of that love? And it was then that the Lord, the Master of the heart and of all the swift questionings of the heart, said, "Children, I will manifest Myself to you." That is, not only was He going to love them, but He was going to show them that He loved them. He was going to make His love as clear and manifest as in the days when He walked with them in Galilee. And one can picture the gladness of His own and the new light that would leap into their eyes when they heard that second promise of their Lord.

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Title: The Ladder of Promise - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 06:04:35 AM
The Ladder of Promise - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

His Promise to Come to Them Personally

But a new wave was on the point of breaking. Doubts and difficulties had not vanished yet. Would the showing of His love include His presence? If not, the past was richer than the future. Men can tell their love by letter. They can tell it and be a thousand miles away. Many a young fellow in the war did that, and the letters are cherished to this hour. At home and living in the house, they never told their mothers how they loved them, but they wrote it from faraway places. Now try to get inside the hearts of the disciples; they were hearts extraordinarily like our own. Would they not instantly begin to speculate how the Lord was going to show His love? And I daresay, being Jews, they thought of the mediators of the ancient law, and began dreaming of angelic messengers. Tidings would be flashed from far away. White-robed ministers would bring the news. The Lord, remote, in the land of the far distances, would have His means of showing that He loved them. And immediately every one of them would feel that this was something less than the dear past when they had His presence in the fields of Galilee. Then, in early morning, He had come to them. He had come to them across the sea. He had come in the hour of their utmost need as from the mountain of Transfiguration. And our blessed Lord, understanding perfectly these thoughts that were surging in their hearts, said thirdly, "Children, I will come to you." I am not going just to send a message, telling you that My love is still unaltered. I am not going to commission any angel. As in the old days, when My presence went with you and gave you rest, I am going to come to you Myself.

His Promise Was to Come and Stay

But when we love somebody very much it is not enough that he should come to us. We want him—do we not?—to stay with us. Now, then, think of these disciples. The Lord had promised that He would come to them. But if He came and swiftly went away again, how their house would be left unto them desolate! And yet what more could they expect, a little band of very lowly folk, now that their Master was the King of glory? If the government was on His shoulder, if He was seated at the right hand of power, if He was in control of the whole universe and Captain of the hosts of heaven, how much of His time could they expect, a little handful of humble Galileans? At the most, a brief glance, a passing word—and before, they had had Him all the time. At the most, a coming for a few blessed moments, followed by the sadness of farewell. And then the Lord, reading all their thoughts and, it may be, smiling at their childishness, said, Children, I will abide with you. I will love you. Yes, Lord, we believe it, but what if we should never know it? I will show my love to you. Yes, Lord, we believe it, but Thou mightest be very far away and show it. I will come to you. Yes, Lord, we believe it, but think of the darkness when Thou goest away again. Foolish children, I will abide with you. There is nothing more to be said. It is all there. Love's questionings and anxieties are silenced. The ladder of promise is complete.


By George H. Morrison

Title: Peace, the Possession of Adequate Resources
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 06:23:05 AM
August 27

Peace, the Possession of Adequate Resources - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

My peace I give unto you— Joh_14:27

What Is Peace?

Talking with a young fellow some time ago, I was struck by a remark he made. It followed on a sermon which we both had listened to on the subject of interior peace. "It's not peace," he said, "we young fellows want. What we want is thrills." That was a very candid utterance, and one likes young fellows to be candid. It set me wondering whether inward peace was really so grey as it is sometimes painted. And just then, in the book of an honored friend, I lit on a sentence which arrested me. He said peace is the possession of adequate resources. That seemed to me a very fruitful thought with a strong appeal in it for vigorous minds, and it is well worth considering a little.

Peace in Business Is the Possession of Adequate Resources

Think, for instance, how true that is of business. When long seasons of depression come and when business is stagnant, if not moribund, what is it that makes all the difference between intense anxiety and peace? It seems to me, who am not a business man but one who watches things with an observant eye, that it is just the possession of adequate resources. If there be little capital and almost no reserves, how terrible these dead times must be! I sometimes wonder how a business man can sleep not knowing if he can tide it over. But how different, when these dead seasons come, for any business that has great reserves and is strong in the possession of vast capital. Scanty capital means sleepless hours. Inadequate resources spell anxiety. What fears and miseries must haunt the breast when there is almost nothing to fall back upon! I venture to think that in the realm of business when times are bad and everything is stagnant, peace is the possession of adequate resources. The multimillionaire does not need to be unduly concerned about paying his current expenses or investing a sum of money in some new venture.

Creative Genius Means Possessing Adequate Mental Resources

The same thing is true of other spheres. Think, for example, of creative genius. Contrast the toiling literary hack with the man of genius like Sir Walter Scott. The one, very imperfectly endowed, is always in misery lest he be running dry. I have known preachers who were just like that, haunted by the fear of running dry. But the man of genius is serene and confident as Sir Walter was serene and confident, because he is conscious of perfectly adequate resources. "Here is God's plenty," as Dryden said of Chaucer. I have known three or four great men in my life, and there was one feature common to them all. They never worried and they rarely hurried. There was a leisurely serenity about them. And that peace, whatever their task might be, whether laying the Atlantic cable or building the Forth Bridge, found its basis in the possession of adequate resources, not in the bank but in the brain.

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Title: Peace, the Possession of Adequate Resources - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 06:27:57 AM
Peace, the Possession of Adequate Resources - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

Christ's Peace Was the Result of Adequate Resources

Then one turns to our Lord and at once discovers how true that was of Him. It was one of the secrets of His rich serenity. Look at Him in the storm—how calm He is! Look again—He is lying fast asleep. He is peaceful amid the raging elements, slumbering like an infant in its cradle. And all the others, Peter, James, and John, agitated, excited, and alarmed, are fearful amid the terrors of the sea. Their fear betrayed their helplessness. It showed them unequal to their problem. They were not equipped for battling with storms. They had no reserves to call up for a tempest. But He was peaceful and sleeping like a child though the wind was howling and the boat was filling, and His peace was the possession of adequate resources. Picture the anxious look upon the host's face when the wine gave out at the marriage feast at Cana. Even Mary was distressed about it, worrying over the honor of the family. Christ alone was carefree. Christ alone was radiant and serene because He was conscious of perfectly adequate resources. "My peace"—it was a very wonderful peace. No sounding of our thought can ever fathom it. There was perfect fellowship with God in it. There was full and unconditional surrender. But one element, one vital element, witnessed in a score of incidents, was the possession of adequate resources.

By Possessing Christ, You Can Possess Adequate Resources

Then the Master comes to you and says, "My peace I give unto you." And, perhaps, like my young friend, you say, "I do not want that peace. I want to have a vivid, thrilling time of it." Many people are saying that today. Well, now, think of it like this—lay aside the unwelcome sense of peace, as if peace meant taking the color out of life and robbing experience of its vividness. Instead of that, say to yourself quietly, and say it again and again till you have mastered it: peace is the possession of adequate resources. You want to live a full, abundant life; but are you really equipped for such a life? Is your will strong enough—your feeling fine enough—your conscience quiet enough—your heart deep enough? Then Christ comes, and says, "Friend, enter into My fellowship today, and I shall give you the resources that you need." Christ can take the sting out of the conscience. Christ can strengthen the weak, unstable will. Christ can exalt and purify the feeling. Christ can deepen the undeepened heart. He can possess you with His divine resources for a full, abundant, and victorious life, and in that possession there is peace. Peace is harmony. Peace is intense life. Peace is being equal to the problem. Peace is possessing adequate resources for an overcoming and abundant life. That is the kind of peace which Jesus gives, not a dull and joyless resignation, but all the resources a guilty sinner needs to enjoy eternal life "in Him" now.


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Joy of the Lord
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 06:48:17 AM
August 30

The Joy of the Lord - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full— Joh_15:11

The Joy of Christ Was an Intense Reality

Our Lord, especially as the days advanced, frequently spoke about His joy, and the notable thing is that when He spoke so, none of His disciples were surprised. Nobody ever asked Him what He meant. They did not look at each other in perplexity. To them it seemed entirely natural that the Master should make reference to His gladness. From this we gather that the joy of Christ was something they were perfectly familiar with, both in His radiant and lofty hours and in His periods of lowly duty. There is much that is quite dark to us unless His joy was an intense reality. There is the note of exultancy in the New Testament. There is the attitude of His Pharisaic enemies who, trained in the prophets, understood His sorrow but never could understand His joy. It was not because He was a man of sorrows that the religious leaders looked askance at Him. It was because He was a man of joy, utterly different from John the Baptist. They were looking for a lone Messiah whose face would be marred more than any man's, and our Lord proclaimed Himself a bridegroom. His joy, then, was an intense reality even on the witness of His enemies. It is because He stands at the back of the New Testament that the New Testament is an exultant book. And it is a profoundly interesting question, and a question which concerns us all, to try to discover at least some of the sources of the joy of Christ.

His Joy Resulted from the Fullness of His Life

One of the sources of His joy, for instance, was the fullness of life which He possessed. It is remarkable how often that word tidiness is brought in as descriptive of the Lord. We all know how when physical life is full, its concomitant and sacrament is joy. We see that on every hand in nature; we see it in the healthy little child. And when one thinks of the inner life of Christ and of the fullness that characterized that inner life, one begins to understand His joy. Morally, He was in perfect poise with heaven. Spiritually, He had the fullness of the Spirit. No slightest disobedience to the Highest ever cast its shadow on His soul. And that fullness of His inward life, like the fullness of physical life in nature, had its concomitant and sacrament in joy. I am come, He said, that others might have life, and that they might have it abundantly. He came to give what He Himself possessed. And that abundant life, rooted in His sinlessness and continually enriched by new obedience, was one of the splendid secrets of His joy.

His Joy Resulted from the Father's Abiding Love

Another never-failing source was His abiding in His Father's love. We see that very clearly in the verse which immediately precedes our text (Joh_15:10). From it we gather that the joy of Jesus was rooted in the presence of the Father, realized every moment that He lived. There is a well-known story of a Scots divine, how once, walking on the grassy hills, he met a shepherd with a joyless look and said to him quietly, "Do you know the Father?" And some years afterwards, so the tale is told, when the minister had forgotten all about it, the shepherd, with gladness in his face, came up to him and said, "I know the Father now, sir." That shepherd had passed out of his isolation into the great fellowship of God. He had moved out of all his worrying care into the calming certainty of love. And in a vision of that love unparalleled, the Good Shepherd lived and toiled and died, and that was one great secret of His joy. To Him it was a shelter from the storm and a shadow from the heat of life. It comforted His heart when men were mocking Him. It sustained Him in the hour of agony. His joy was not only rooted in His fullness, it was rooted in the love of Heaven which to Him, every moment that He lived, was closer than breathing, nearer than hands or feet.

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Title: The Joy of the Lord - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 06:50:56 AM
The Joy of the Lord - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

His Joy Resulted from His Entire Surrender to Vocation

And then we must not forget one other source: it was His entire surrender to vocation. Our Lord gave Himself, in utter self-surrender, to the task appointed Him of God. The first impression which the Gospels make on us is that of the freedom of the life of Jesus. He moves hither and thither in sweet liberty. Like the song of the thrush, His words are unpremeditated. And then we read more closely and discover that through all the varied freedom of that life, like the beat of the screw in some great ocean liner, is the throb of a sovereign dominating purpose. "I come to do thy will, O God. My meat is to do the will of him that sent me. I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished." And that devotion, that utter self-surrender, that dedication to a high vocation, was for Him, as it is for every man, one of the deep sources of His joy. Neglect your work and you are never glad. Do it half-heartedly, and gloom is everywhere. But give yourself to it, with heart and soul and strength, and all the birds are singing in the trees. And it was just because our Lord so gave Himself to a vocation which led Him to the cross that "God, even his God, anointed him with the oil of gladness above his fellows."


By George H. Morrison

Title: It Is Finished
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 07:09:34 AM
September 2

It Is Finished - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

He said, It is finished…and gave up the ghost— Joh_19:30

The Power of a Single Word

These three words, "It is finished," are in the original a single word. That has been called the greatest single word which ever broke upon the ear of man. Often, when one is preaching, it is not the whole sermon that God uses. It is a single word or thought coming home with power to the hearer. The one word Yes uttered by a woman may alter the whole future of a man and lead his life to power or ineffectiveness. A single word has changed the course of history and affected the destiny of empires. Who can exhaust the heartbreak and the tears that are hidden in the word Farewell ? But the greatest of all single words that ever broke upon the ear of man is this word of Jesus upon Calvary. Finished was His work on earth for God, finished His work for man. Finished were those sufferings which made His face marred more than any man's. We have security and peace and joy, not less than absolution and release, in the finished work of our Redeemer.

The First Utterance of Jesus Was about His Life's Work

As we read this word our thoughts go winging back to the first recorded utterance of Jesus. He was a lad of twelve when He said, "Wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?" Some people saunter through the world; their great ambition is an easy life. But our Lord, even in His boyhood, had an intense conviction of vocation. The claims of home and the appeal of family were submerged in the intense conviction that He must be about His Father's business. What that conviction meant to Him in boyhood it is impossible for us to estimate. It would grow with every prayer He prayed; it would deepen as He pored over the Old Testament. But even then it mastered and controlled Him, and to the end this was His burning thought: "I must work the works of him that sent me." It is always a quietly glad thing to complete the task even of a day. But when the task is lifelong and has absorbed the years, far greater is the gladness of completion. That is why we never really penetrate the gladness of this cry of Jesus till we remember that His labor was His life. It was not a service of selected hours. It was a service that included everything. His sufferings and His prayers were part of it as surely as His teaching on the hill. There was in it an obedience which was passive as well as an obedience which was active—and now that work for God and man was ended.

The Joy of Performing One's Work Faithfully

Again, we reverently remember the fidelity with which that work was done, and done in the teeth of every temptation, for He was tempted in all points like as we are. When we do the humblest bit of service faithfully there is always a certain joy when it is done. Perhaps there is no joy to equal that, unless it be the happiness of home. It does not matter what the task may be, whether in the kitchen or the college—to do it faithfully sets the joy-bells ringing. The man who is unfaithful in his duty is continually defrauding other people. But he is doing something even worse than that—he is continually defrauding his own soul. For him the joy-bells never ring, nor does he hear the music of high heaven, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant." Now think of the fidelity of Christ, tempted in all points like as we are; tempted by weariness and by His friends and by all the appearances of ghastly failure, yet through the bitterest and darkest hours faithful to His vocation till He cries on Calvary, "It is finished."

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Title: It Is Finished - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 07:11:46 AM
It Is Finished - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

Jesus and His Work Were One

Again the moment of this cry reveals to us that Jesus and His work were one. His work was not finished even in Gethsemane: it was finished in the article of death. There are multitudes whose work is over before the hour when they are called to die. The teacher must retire at the age limit; the preacher must hand his scepter to another. And there are many whose work is just beginning, like some fair flower opening in the garden, when "comes the blind fury with the abhorred shears, and slits the thin-spun life." With Jesus it was different. He cried, "It is finished," and gave up the ghost. His task was not ended before the final breath, nor did death smite Him and leave it incomplete. Bound together into a radiant unity were the vocation of our blessed Lord and the life and death appointed Him of God. You cannot separate Jesus from His words, and you cannot separate Jesus from His work. I am the Way, the Truth, the Life. Come unto Me and I will give you rest. That is why all fellowship with Christ gives us a richer conception of His work and why the humblest sharing in His work gives us a deeper knowledge of His person.

The Finishing of Christ's Work on Earth Was the Beginning of Another in Heaven

But the finishing of work, in our experience, is not invariably a happy thing. If we have loved our work and given our hearts to it, the hour of ending may be an hour of sadness. There are well-known instances of writers who laid down their pen with an infinite regret. They have told us that as they wrote the closing sentences their eyes were wet with tears. And sometimes when one resigns his post and honorable men convene to do him honor, no praiseful fellowship can quite conceal his bitterness that the career is over. One thing alone can dissipate that bitterness. One thing alone can banish it entirely. It is the assurance that what we call an end is in another aspect a beginning. And for Jesus there was that full assurance, for did He not say to the penitent thief on Calvary, "Today thou shalt be with me in paradise"? He was dead and is alive forevermore. The end was the beginning. He ever liveth to make intercession for us. He will never leave us nor forsake us. In pardoned sin, in present fellowship, in the conquering power of His completed work, He sees of the travail of His soul.


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Garden and the Cross
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 07:22:18 AM
September 3

The Garden and the Cross - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

In the place where he was crucified there was a garden— Joh_19:41

The Proximity of the Cross and the Garden

To a deep-seeing eye like that of John, this proximity was more than a coincidence. John felt that there was an inward harmony between the garden and the cross. The cross was the crowning service of Christ's life. It was love going to the uttermost. It was the final and voluntary sacrifice for the salvation and service of the world. And to John it was no mere coincidence that in the place of that supreme surrender there should be the fragrance and the blossoming of flowers. One might have thought to find a desert there. One might have counted on a bleak and dreary scene. What struck the mystical eye of the apostle was that everything was the opposite of that. Christ died. He gave Himself for men. He poured out His life in full surrender—and in the place where all this happened was a garden.

There Is Always a Garden When We Share in the Self-Surrender of Our Lord

So do we touch the profound truth that John, in the spirit of poetry, is hinting at. He hints that there always is a garden when we share in the self-surrender of our Lord. Let any man deny himself, let him willingly lay down his life for others, let him surrender what is dearest to him in the self-abandonment of love, and the strange thing is that everything grows beautiful, and the flowers begin to blossom at his feet in a way they never did before. It seems to be a hard, bleak life, the life of a continuous self-denial. It seems to rob one of self-realization and of many a sweet thing which is the gift of God; but John saw it was entirely otherwise. Live for self, and you move into a wilderness. Sooner or later the scenery grows desolate. The music goes; the fragrance disappears; the world grows cold and meaningless and ugly. Live for others; give yourself for others; lose your life for the sake of those who need you; and in the place where you are crucified there is a garden.

Joy Seekers Are Unhappy

One might think of daily work a moment, for work, to many, is uncongenial drudgery. It is hard to be tied to counter or to desk when the voices of the bigger world are calling. To feel that one is missing things always brings an ache into the soul. And there are multitudes, chained to their day's drudgery, who have the restless feeling that they are missing things. What a wonderful difference it would make to them, burdened with their daily crucifixion, if they would write this text upon their hearts. I was talking to a doctor once who practices on the Riviera. Most of his patients are the kind of people who spend their lives following the sun. And when I asked him if such folk were happy, he answered in words I never can forget: "Happy! They're the most miserable people on God's earth." We are not here to follow the sun. We are here to follow Christ. We are not here to do just what we like. We are here to do just what we ought. Did not Wordsworth say of the man who does his duty, "Flowers laugh before him in their beds"? When we do our bit we never miss the best. The road to the garden always lies that way. Sometimes it seems a daily crucifixion, especially in the leafy months of summer. But sooner or later do we all discover what the eye of John was quick to note, that in the place where He was crucified there was a garden.

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Title: The Garden and the Cross - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 07:24:49 AM
The Garden and the Cross - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

Cross-Bearers Find Themselves in a Garden

Or, once again, we think of cross-bearing, for cross-bearing is a universal thing. Every life has the shadow it must enter, and every life the cross that it must bear. Now sometimes it is very hard to bear the cross. There are seasons when we are tempted to rebel. If our cross were gone, how happy might we be. Life would be like "a melody in tune." Yet who can look on life and watch its issues and follow the track of patient cross-bearing without discovering that the flinty track is God's appointed road into the garden? I knew a girl who was left motherless. She had to be mother to the younger children. And sometimes she was tempted to grow bitter, for it meant stern self-surrender every day. But the children have grown up and call her blessed now, and they enfold her with loving admiration, and in the place where she was crucified there is a garden.

Self-Denial Is the Way to Joy

Lastly, one's thoughts turn to the Christian life, for the Christian life is never easy. I always distrust things that are too easy, especially a too easy Christianity. Strait is the gate and narrow is the way. If thy right hand offend thee, cut if off. They that are Christ's have crucified the flesh. Is that an easy life? One might well think that such a life as that would be a desolate and dreary business, and there are many who shun it on that score. What! Surrender up my life with its freedoms and its sweet and secret pleasures? Turn my days into an arid desert where no passion-flowers can ever grow? But the strange thing is that with the great surrender there comes gladness, and birds begin to sing, and every common flower takes new beauty. Self-surrender is the road to service. Self-denial is the way to song. To be made captive by the Lord Jesus Christ is to have the freedom of the universe. Then one goes back to this quiet word of John and begins to understand the depth of it—in the place where He was crucified there was a garden.


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Resurrection
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 07:38:15 AM
September 4

The Resurrection - Page 1
by George H. Morrison

The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre— Joh_20:1

Failure to Believe Christ for the Present

Although Jesus had been teaching His disciples with increasing clearness that He would rise from the dead, none of them had grasped the full meaning of His words. The company of Jesus had been so sweet to them that they had refused to let their minds dwell upon His death, and the hints of death and of His resurrection were so vitally connected in the teaching of Jesus that to ignore the one fact was to reject the other. When Jesus told Martha that her brother would rise again, Martha answered that she knew he would rise at the last day. So, doubtless, when Jesus spoke darkly of His own resurrection, the disciples would dream of some far distant hour. Long ages after Elijah had been carried heavenward, some of them had seen him on the Mount of Transfiguration. So it might be that when the centuries had run, they would meet in glory the Lord they loved so well. They could believe for some far distant day. Their point of failure was not the future but the present. The day would come, no doubt, when Christ would rise. The incredible thing was that He was risen now. Are we not all tempted to an unbelief like that? Is it not easy to believe that God will work, but very hard to believe that God is working? Strong faith not only deals with the far past and with the years that are still hidden behind the veil, it is radiant for the present hour and sees the hand of God at work today.

Mary Magdalene's Mission to the Tomb

Early in the morning, then, of the first day of the week, Mary of Magdala steals out into the garden. She had been there before when they were burying Jesus, and she had marked the spot where they had laid her Lord. Now it was dark; the sun had not yet risen; the children in Jerusalem were dreaming happy dreams. But the Sabbath had been one of misery for Mary, and little sleep had visited her that night. And what was it that drew her to the garden? It was not curiosity; it was love. It was love with a passion for service at the heart of it—there was still something she could do for Jesus. Joseph and Nicodemus had embalmed the body. But it had been hastily done, for the Sabbath was at hand. Mary was going to complete the embalming, and she would have the quiet hour of dawn for her sad task. But who would help her to roll away the stone? That thought had been troubling her all the weary night. Her heart was full of it as she lifted the latch of her lodging and stepped out into the chill morning air. As she entered the garden, the sky was reddening. The dawn was flushing up out of the East. And she looked and saw at a glance that something strange had happened—the stone, that she had been vexing herself about all night, was gone! Now often, when one trouble is removed, there comes a greater trouble in its place. We looked for peace when the thing that vexed us vanished, and instead of peace we were plunged in deeper sorrow. So Mary, instead of rejoicing at what she saw, was launched out upon a wider sea of agony. It flashed on her in a twinkling that the body was stolen. Under cover of night her Lord had been taken away. She dropped the spices and ointments she was carrying. There were other women there; Mary forgot them. She hurried back through the streets of the wakening city. Breathlessly she told Peter and John what she had seen. And then we read how Peter and John ran out and how Peter impetuously pushed on into the tomb. And there were the graveclothes lying on the stone slab; and on the stone pillow, raised a little above them, the napkin, still coiled in a circle as when it bound His head. The linen clothes, weighted with spices, had sunk flat; but the empty napkin kept the form of the Savior's brow.

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Title: The Resurrection - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 07:40:39 AM
The Resurrection - Page 2
by George H. Morrison

The Risen Christ Appeared to Mary First

Then follows the appearance of the risen Lord to Mary. It was not to Peter that Jesus first appeared. It was not even to John, "whom Jesus loved." It was to Mary out of whose heart Jesus had cast seven devils; it was to Mary who loved much because much had been forgiven her. After discovering that the grave was empty, the disciples had gone away home again (Joh_20:10). But Mary, whose home had been the heart of Jesus, could not tear herself away from the garden and the grave. It was desolation to think that Christ was lost. Not even the white robed angels could console her. We are never so sure of the depth of Mary's love as when we see her weeping by the tomb. A great scholar, in studies of the resurrection, points out the different features emphasized in the accounts of the four evangelists. Matthew dwells chiefly on the majesty and glory of the resurrection. Mark insists upon it as a fact. Luke treats it as a spiritual necessity; and John, as a touchstone of character. And when we see Mary weeping in the garden, overwhelmed with her unutterable loss, we feel that here is the touchstone of her character. In the depth of her loss we find the depth of her love, and she loved much because she was forgiven much. So Mary stood in her sorrow beside the grave, thinking perhaps that Jesus was far away; and Jesus was never nearer to her than in that moment when she thought Him lost. She turned round; there was someone behind her. It was Jesus, but she thought it was the gardener. Some mysterious change had come on the Lord she loved, and it was dawn, and her eyes were dim with tears. Then Jesus said, "Mary," and she knew the voice. What a glorious joy must have taken her poor heart! She cried, "Rabboni!" She would have clung to Him. She would have held Him in the old grasp of human tenderness. And Jesus had to say to her, "Cling not to Me; hereafter, Mary, you shall walk by faith and not by sight." Then Mary received Christ's message for the disciples; and with a new heart, and in a world that was all new, hastened to tell them that she had seen the Lord.


By George H. Morrison

Title: The Intrusiveness of Christ
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 08:23:52 AM

September 7

The Intrusiveness of Christ - Page 1
By George H. Morrison

When the doors were shut…for fear of the Jews, came Jesus— Joh_20:19

A Time of Conflicting Emotions

This was a very memorable Sunday evening, one of the most memorable that history has known. The grave was empty; Christ Jesus had arisen, and slowly the glad truth was reaching the disciples. First had come the tidings of Mary Magdalene, then the thrilling experience of Peter, and now the two travelers to Emmaus had come in and had just finished telling what had befallen them. Can we not imagine what a conflict of emotions surged and throbbed in the disciples' hearts? Some believed instantly; some could not crush their doubt; some passed in swift alternation through glory and despair. And it was then when the doors were shut for fear of the Jews, that Jesus came and stood in the midst of them. How exquisitely fitting was His first word, "Peace!" Peace was the very thing which they lacked that evening. We may always trust Christ, in His unerring tact, to say the right word at the right moment.

But the words I ask you especially to consider are these: "when the doors were shut for fear of the Jews." They suggest to me two lines of thought which I shall ask you to follow for a little. The first is, we may close the doors on Christ unwittingly. The second is, though we close the doors on Christ, we do not shut Him out. May God grant us His guidance as we proceed.

We May Close the Doors on Christ Unwittingly

First, then, we may close the doors on Christ unwittingly; that, you see, is what the disciples did. When they shut and locked the doors of the upper chamber, they never meant to bar them against Jesus. They were afraid of the Jews, the Gospel frankly tells us—and there are few books so frank as the Bible is. They had not been born yet into the heroism of Pentecost; they had not been baptized with the Spirit of fearlessness. Had they heard the trampling of Jewish feet upon the stairs and the beating of Jewish staves upon the door, I daresay they would have thought that all was lost. So they made fast the door for fear of the Jews. That was their only object when they barred it. Yet you and I, reading the story together, detect that they were doing more than they imagined, for unwittingly they closed the door on Christ.

Now there is a lesson in that thought on which you and I do well to ponder. It is that we may close the door on all that is best and worthiest, and yet we can honestly say we never meant to do it. I do not think there are many who have deliberately resolved to shut out Christ. This is an age of such uncertainty that most men are too uncertain even to be skeptics. But there are doors we may close, never thinking of Christ Jesus; there are lines of conduct in common life we may pursue, and we never dream that we are raising barriers between ourselves and the highest and the best. But in the end of the day for us, as for the disciples, it will be found that we have done more than we imagined—we have closed the door unwittingly on Christ.

Many of you will remember the experience of Mr. Darwin which with his customary truthfulness he has chronicled. He tells us that through years of absorption in science, he lost the power of appreciating Shakespeare. He had no quarrel with Shakespeare—how could he have? He knew that he stood peerless and unparalleled. But Darwin for years had given heart and brain, with magnificent persistency, to certain studies. Every power had been riveted and every faculty absorbed in the enthusiastic search for certain truths—and then, when he came back to Shakespeare once again, with kindling memories of how he had loved him once, he had closed the door unwittingly on Shakespeare. It is a comparatively small matter when Shakespeare is concerned. It is supremely important when it is Jesus Christ. It may even be worthwhile sometimes to close the door on Shakespeare. But to close it on Christ is always a tragic thing. I beseech you, see that you are not living and acting as the disciples did upon that Lord's day evening when for fear of the Jews they shut the door, and unwittingly closed it on their Lord.

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Title: The Intrusiveness of Christ - Page 2
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 08:26:37 AM
The Intrusiveness of Christ - Page 2
By George H. Morrison

Friendships and Choices May Shut the Door on Christ

There are many ways in which men commit this error. Think for example of the formation of friendships. Many a young man is ruined by his enemies, but more young men are ruined by their friends. It is amazing how easily some people form their friendships, how they make them on the line of least resistance, how they fail to realize what is implied in that mystical and mighty name of friend. So friendships are lightly and improvidently made, and slowly and secretly character degenerates; until at last that friendship (unworthy of the name), begun in the comradeship of some light-hearted hour, closes the door on a hundred noble things, and among them on the beauty of Christ Jesus. Or think again of the choices that we make—and we exercise our noblest prerogative in choosing. Every morning that we rise and every day that we go forth, our choices make us or our choices mar us. Someday a choice more momentous than usual comes. We are face to face with one of life's great decisions. And we have not been living on high levels, and so we choose amiss, for a man's whole life is in every choice he makes. Then the days pass, and the issues show themselves, and the choice works itself out in life and character, and a hundred glorious things are tarnished and are tainted as the result of one disastrous choice. We never meant to shut out power and purity, but they have receded into the dim distance ever since. We never thought to grow heart-weary and world-weary, but that may follow from one mismanaged choosing. Like the disciples beset by some poor fear, unwittingly we have closed the door on Christ.

Levity Can Close the Door on Christ

But perhaps the commonest of all causes of this great error lies in the spirit that will not take things seriously. I would never ask a young man or woman to be solemn, but I would always urge a young man or woman to be serious. We read the parable of the marriage feast, and we note how the invited guests made light of it. Do you think these guests had been serious and earnest men up to the hour when they received that invitation? God does not tamper with character like that. No man begins to be frivolous by mocking kings. When they were children they had made light of home and had thought little of a mother's love; when they were youths they had made light of purity, for they thought that to be immoral was a manly thing. Now comes the invitation of the king, the crowning and decisive moment of their lives, and in that moment all their past is concentrated, and Scripture tells us they made light of that. One thing is certain, they never meant to do it. They never thought that it would come to this. Thoughtlessly they closed the door on reverent feeling, on devoutness and on chivalry and on purity. But the curse of such levity is that it involves far more than we shall ever know till the years have unrolled their story. In tampering with the least we touch the greatest. We begin by closing the door on little decencies, and unwittingly we close the door on Christ.

Though We Close the Doors on Christ, We Do Not Shut Him Out

But now I pass on (and I do so very gladly) to the second and evangelical message of our text. That message is, though we close the doors on Christ yet we do not shut Him out. That night in Jerusalem the disciples found it so. Suddenly, though every lock was turned, Christ was among them. They had closed the door on Him not knowing what they did, yet for all that they did not shut Him out.

In studying the life of Christ on earth I have often been struck with that note of the inevitable. Men tried to escape Him—adjured Him to depart—yet though all the doors were shut, Jesus confronted them. I think of the Gadarene demoniac in the tombs. He was an object of terror so that all men fled from him. He had shut out his nearest and dearest by his wildness, but for all his wildness he could not shut out the Lord. "What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God—art thou come hither to torment us before our time?" He could escape from his chains; he could not escape from Jesus. Lo! he is sitting clothed and in his right mind.

For the Jews, Christ Was Unavoidable

Or I think of Christ in relation to Jewish history, and I feel once again that He was unavoidable. For the whole struggle of scribes and Pharisees and priests was to close the door on Christ and keep Him out. They refused to acknowledge Him and they would make no place for Him; He was a gluttonous man and a wine-bibber; not this man but Barabbas! Everything that malevolence could do was done; everything that spite could suggest was swiftly practiced to discredit the name and sully the reputation of this prophet who mourned with tears over Jerusalem. Did it succeed? Was the door really shut? Was Christ barred out from the destinies of Judaism? Ah, sirs, every page of Jewish story reveals the futility of that endeavor. The most potent influence in Judaism is Christ Jesus. He has determined its fortunes and its fall. He is inextricably blended with its blood and anguish. He is the daystar of its only hope. They closed the door on Him—beat Him off—said He is done with now: but for all that they could not shut Him out.

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Title: The Intrusiveness of Christ - Page 3
Post by: nChrist on August 20, 2005, 08:28:50 AM
The Intrusiveness of Christ - Page 3
By George H. Morrison

You May Shut the Door, but Christ Can Still Reach You

If that was true in history I want you to believe that it is true now. For weal or woe, whatever walls you raise, Christ passes through them all and gets to you. There are deeds that we did long since, perhaps twenty years ago, but to this hour unexpectedly they rise and meet us. There were moments of exquisite happiness in our past, and even today their memory is like music. You cannot shut out the thought of intense hours; no change of years will prevent them winning through. And like the ineffaceable memory of such scenes is the presence and the beauty of the Lord. Christ is inevitable. Christ is unavoidable. I want that thought to sink into your hearts. Close every door against Him if you will; the mystery is that you do not shut Him out.

To Avoid Christ Is an Impossibility.

Sometimes He comes through the closed door just because all life is penetrated with Him. We talk of the Christian atmosphere we breathe, but the atmosphere is more than Christian, it is Christ. This is the Lord's day—who then is this Lord? We may have closed the door on Him, but He is here. We cannot date one letter in the morning but we mean that so many years ago Christ was born. He meets us at every turn of the road, in every newspaper, and in every problem. Our life is so interpenetrated with Christ Jesus that to avoid Him is an impossibility.

We Meet Christ through a Genuine Christian

Sometimes He meets us in a noble character, in a man who is a living argument for religion. And though we have resolved to have nothing to do with Christ, yet we feel in a moment that Christ is by our side. Creeds may mean nothing to us; we may have left off church-going; the dust may have gathered thick upon our Bibles; but accidentally we meet some man or some woman, having the hallmark of the genuine Christ, and through the shut door we know that Christ is here.

We Meet Christ in Our Moments of Sorrow

And sometimes it is in our deeper hours that He so comes. It is in the darker and more tragic moments of our life. It is when the sun has ceased to shine, and the birds have ceased to sing; when we are baffled and broken and disappointed. We closed the door on Him when we were strong and vigorous, for we did not want the intrusion of the Cross; but when life's deeps are uncovered then it is God we need, and through the shut doors Christ is in the midst.

Christ Can Break Your Hopelessness

In closing let me say this single word: am I speaking to any whose sin has made them hopeless? It may be there is someone who seems to have closed every door upon Christ Jesus. Have you been living for years in secret sin? Or has one great sin besmirched and blackened everything? The result of it all is that you seem utterly callous, incapable of faith, cold as a stone. My brother or sister, things are not utterly hopeless. Even now you may have the benediction. Through every barrier—in the teeth of every obstacle—that presence which is life and power may be yours. Christ is a spirit—nothing can hold Him back. There is no road-maker in all the world like love. Cry out, "Thou Son of God, come to my heart!" and though all the doors have been shut, He will be there.


By George H. Morrison

Post by: nChrist on August 14, 2006, 10:48:32 PM
Good News for Everyone! - Page 1
By D. L. Moody

"Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature."—Mark 16:15.
That text does not say, "Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to the elect"; it does not say, "Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to the rich," or "to the learned," or "to the unlearned"; but "Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature."

I am one of those who believe that God means what He says. When He says, "Go…and preach… to every creature," He means that every man shall be invited to the gospel feast, that none need stay away. Then if a man does not come, it will be because he is not willing to accept the invitation. As Christ says, "Ye will not come to me, that ye might have life" (John 5:40).

It is not because men cannot come; it is because they will not come.

The Devil does not want you to hear the text, for the Word of God gives life.
The text is worth more than the sermon. Hear the proclamation:
"Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned [condemned]."—Mark 16:15,16.

That is plain language, so plain that no one here need misunderstand it. As I said, Christ means what He says. He sends out His messengers to proclaim the glad tidings. Gethsemane is behind; the empty grave is behind; Calvary, in all its horrors, is now past; He is on His way back Home to take His seat at the right hand of the Father. His little church is gathered round Him—a little handful—and He breathes upon them the Holy Ghost; and now this is His parting commission, "Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature." Thank God for that text! Thank God that the commission is for us to proclaim it to every creature and that every person in this wide, wide world is invited to the gospel feast!

The Promise for All

Every one of God's proclamations is connected with the word "whosoever." I think it was Richard Baxter who said he would rather have that word "whosoever" than "Richard Baxter"; for if it were "Richard Baxter," it might refer to some other Richard Baxter, one who had lived and died, but "whosoever" he knew meant him.

A woman once thought there was no promise in the Bible for her; she thought the promises were for someone else. There are a good many of these people in the world. They think it is too good to be true that they can be saved without doing something to earn it.

This woman one day received a letter, and when she opened it, she found it was not for her at all; it was meant for another with her name. Her eyes were thus opened to the fact that if she should find some promise in the Bible directed to her, she would not know whether it meant her or someone else who bore her name.
But you know the word "whosoever" means everyone in this house: that boy down there, that gray-haired man and that young man right in the blush of youth.

"Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature." It does not leave out one. Go and proclaim the glad tidings to every man on the face of the earth.

Pardon for the Prisoners

While in Ohio a few years ago, I was invited to preach in the state prison. Eleven hundred convicts were brought into the chapel, and all sat in front of me. After I had finished preaching, the chaplain said:

"Moody, I want to tell you of a scene which occurred in this room. A few years ago our commissioners went to the governor of the state and got him to promise that he would pardon five men for good behavior.

"The governor consented with this understanding: the record was to be kept in secret, and at the end of six months the five men highest on the roll should receive a pardon, regardless of who they were or what they had done; even if they were there for life, they should receive a pardon.

"At the end of six months, the prisoners were all brought into the chapel. The commissioners came in. The president of the commissioners stood up on the platform, put his hand in his pocket and brought out some papers, saying, 'I hold in my hand pardons for five men.'"

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Post by: nChrist on August 14, 2006, 10:50:09 PM
Good News for Everyone! - Page 2
By D. L. Moody

The chaplain told me he had never witnessed anything on earth like it. Every man was as still as death, many were deathly pale, and the suspense was something awful.

The commissioner went on to tell them how they had earned the pardon. But the chaplain said to him, "Before you make your speech, read out the names. This suspense is awful."

So he read out the first name: "Reuben Johnson will come up and get his pardon."
He held it out, but no one came forward.

He said to the governor, "Are all the prisoners here?" The governor told him they were all there. Then he said again, "Reuben Johnson will come and get his pardon. It is signed and sealed by the governor. He is a free man."

The chaplain told me he looked right down where Reuben was and saw him looking all around to find the fortunate man who had received a pardon.

Finally the chaplain caught his eye and said, "Reuben, you are the man." Reuben turned round and looked behind him to see where Reuben was.

The chaplain said the second time, "Reuben, you are the man." The second time he looked round, thinking it must be some other Reuben.

Well, the chaplain could see where Reuben was, and he had to say three times, "Reuben, come up and get your pardon."

At last the old man got up and came along down the hall, trembling from head to foot. When he took the pardon, he looked at it, went back to his seat, buried his face in his hands, and the prisoners saw him weep to think he was a free man.

When the prisoners got into ranks to go back to the cells, Reuben stepped in too. The chaplain had to call, "Reuben, get out of the ranks; you are a free man; you are no longer a prisoner."

That is the way men make out pardons—for good character or good behavior. But God makes out pardons for men with no character, men who have been very bad. He has a pardon for every sinner in London who will take it.

I do not care who he is or what he is like; he may be the greatest sinner who ever walked the streets of London, but I come with glad tidings and preach the Gospel to every creature that "whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely" (Rev. 22:17). Every man is invited.

Why Is the Door Bolted?

When Dr. Arnot, whom the Lord has since called Home to his reward, was pastor of a church in Glasgow, he heard that a woman he knew was in trouble. She could not pay her debts, nor could she pay her rent; so he went around to her house, thinking he would help her.

He knocked at the door, listened and thought he heard someone inside; so he knocked again, but no one came. He knocked the third time very loudly and listened but did not hear anyone; all was still. After waiting some time, he made a great noise and at last left the house.

Some few days after, he met the woman in the street and said to her, "I was around at your house the other day. I heard you were in trouble and could not pay your rent, so I went to help you."

The woman said, "Was that you? I was in the house all the time; but I thought it was the landlord come for the rent, and as I hadn't the money, I kept the door locked."

That woman represents a sinner. A sinner thinks God is coming to demand something. Instead, God comes to give and to bless.

You all owe God a debt you cannot pay, and the Gospel tells you that Christ came and paid it for you. You had better pull back the bolt and let Him in tonight.

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Post by: nChrist on August 14, 2006, 10:52:05 PM
Good News for Everyone! - Page 3
By D. L. Moody

A Dublin Door and the Sinner's Heart

When we were in Dublin, I went out one morning to an early meeting. I found the servants had not opened the front door, so I pulled back a bolt, but I could not get the door open. Then I turned a key, but the door would not open. Then I found there was another bolt at the top; then I found there was another bolt at the bottom. Still the door would not open. Then I found there was a bar, and then I found a night-lock. I found there were five or six different fastenings.

I am afraid that door represents every sinner's heart. The door of his heart is double-locked, double-bolted and double-barred. Oh, my friends, pull back the bolts and let the King of Glory in! He wants to bless you; He wants to cancel the debts; He wants you to be reconciled; He wants you to be saved.

He does not wish the death of any but that all may turn to Him and live. What said the angel to those shepherds on the plains of Bethlehem?

"Behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour."—Luke 2:10,11.

Liberty Proclaimed to Captives

Now, I contend that men can hear no better news than that a Saviour has been given and that God wants to save them—not that men shall be lost, not that men shall perish, but that a Saviour has been given to save us from our sins. Christ did not come into the world to condemn the world. He came that the world through Him might be saved (John 3:17).

Look at Him in Nazareth. What did He do when He turned into the synagogue one Sabbath? He opened the Book at the place where it is written:

"The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted."—Luke 4:18.
My friends, think of the broken hearts in London! Christ says He is come to heal the brokenhearted. "He hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives."

Think of this, you poor drunkards, slaves to the infernal cup! I bring you good news tonight. The Son of God can set your soul free and make you free men. Is not that good news? Christ was anointed for that purpose. God sent Him to proclaim the glad tidings.

I would to God that every man in this vast assembly would believe the Gospel and be saved! Oh, that you would receive the Lord Jesus as your Way, your Truth and your Life! All you have to do is just to take Him.

How to Take a Gift

This afternoon there were a great many who came up to ask what they must do to be saved. A young lady among the number said to me, "Mr. Moody, I want to be saved. I wish you would tell me how." The tears trickled down her cheeks as she added, "You do not know how much I want to be saved!"

I said, "My friend, you would know how to take a gift, would you not? If I offered you my Bible, you would know how to take it, would you not?"
"Yes sir," she said, "I should."

"Salvation is a gift, and just as you would take a present, you should take God's present. God's present to you is His Son from Heaven. Receive Him."

She said, "Mr. Moody, is that all I have to do?"

I replied, "Yes, that is all you can do. You receive Him first."

"But won't I have to ask for Him?"

I answered, "You need not do it. What is the use of asking for what God is offering?"

Suppose I say to this boy, "Look here, I want to give you my Bible," and the boy says, "I wish you would make me a present of the Bible. Will you give it to me?"
Still I say, "Take it, take it," yet he keeps asking for it.

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Post by: nChrist on August 14, 2006, 10:53:36 PM
Good News for Everyone! - Page 4
By D. L. Moody

Now God is offering salvation to every sinner. You have nothing to do but to take it. Who will take salvation as a gift tonight?

I was out on the Pacific coast in California two or three years ago. I was the guest of a man who had a large vineyard. One day he said, "Moody, while you are my guest I want you to be very happy. If there is anything in the orchard or in the vineyard you would like, help yourself."

Well, when I wanted an orange, I did not go to an orange tree and pray the orange to fall into my pocket; I walked up to a tree, reached out my hand and took an orange. He said, "Take," and I took.

God says, "There is My Son; take Him." "The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life" (Rom. 6:23).

God Is a Giver

Satan is down in the audience working while I am preaching. He says, "If you take it, you will have to give up too much. Do not let that man have power over you. Do not believe that man. If you become a Christian, you have to give up too much."

Let me say—mark the words—God does not come here and ask any man to give up anything. The first thing God wants you to do is to take; and after you have taken the new life and have a new nature, old things will pass away, and all things will become new.

I tried to stop swearing before I was converted, but the more I tried, the worse I became. But one night when Jesus met me, I received Him, and I have had no desire to swear since. It stopped itself; I got something better. The things I once loved I now hate, and the things I once hated I now love.

There was a perfect change, a revolution in my life, when God revealed Himself to me; and since then His yoke is easy and His burden is light.

God does not come down and say, "Young man, give up this and that." He says, "There is My Son; take Him."

There is the gift. And there is nothing that God can give us that is worth more than the gift of eternal life. If you were allowed to choose, you would ask for eternal life. You would rather have that gift than any other. Well, that is the gift that God wants to bestow upon you. He says, "Here it is, all in My Son. If you receive Him here, He will receive you yonder. If you reject Him here, He will reject you yonder."

He came unto His own, the Jews, and they would not have Him. "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name" (John 1:12).

Now, even now, the moment you receive Christ, you get power to serve Him; the moment you receive the Lord Jesus, you get power to live for Him.

A Little Boy and a Pair of Scissors

My wife had a schoolmate who had a little boy about four years old. This beautiful little boy was one day cutting a piece of string with a penknife. The knife went into his eye and put it out. My wife was therefore very careful about not allowing our children to use knives.

She went out one day, and our little boy, two years old, got hold of a pair of scissors. Our little girl knew he ought not to have them, so she went to him and tried to take them away. But the little fellow held onto the scissors and would not give them up.

She was afraid of his sticking them into his eyes, so she ran off to another room, got an orange and came running in holding it up, saying, "Willie, don't you want the orange?" The little fellow dropped the scissors and went for the orange.

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Post by: nChrist on August 14, 2006, 10:55:20 PM
Good News for Everyone! - Page 5
By D. L. Moody

If you will allow me the illustration, God comes here and says, "Here is My Son; take Him." He saves the sinner; and the moment we get Him, these things we love so much float away into the dim past.

Christ is worth more than all the world. God comes and says, "Here is My Son; take Him and believe on Him." The moment you receive Him, you get power over the flesh, the world and the Devil. But you do not get the power until you receive life from Christ, until you believe on the Lord Jesus Christ.

May God help you to believe now and to receive the Gospel tonight!

The Rich Evangelist and the People's Debts

I will give another illustration, for illustrations are better than dry sermons.
I heard of an Englishman who was converted some time ago. When the Lord converted him, he in turn had a great desire to see every man converted. (I would not give much for a man's conversion who did not have that desire.) This man was so filled with the love of Christ that he wanted to go out and publish the good tidings.

He went into a town and gave notice that he would preach in a certain place. It got noised around that the man was rich; so, many went to see him out of curiosity. He had a great audience the first night, but as he was not a very eloquent man, people did not become interested. Men looked at the messenger instead of the message.

The next night hardly anyone was there.

Then he got out great placards and placed them around the town. He stated that any man in that town who owed a debt and would come around to the office between nine and twelve o'clock on a certain day would get the debt paid.

Of course, it went through the town like wildfire. One said to the other, "John, do you believe that?"

"I am not going to believe that any stranger is going to pay our debts." No one believed it, although there were a good many, no doubt, who would have liked to have gotten their debts paid.

Well, the day came, and at nine o'clock the man was there. At ten o'clock none had come. At eleven o'clock a man was seen walking up and down, looking over his shoulder. Finally he put his head in at the door and said, "Is it true that you will pay any man's debt?"

"Yes. Do you owe any debt?"


"Have you brought the necessary papers?" (The placard had told them what to do.)


The preacher drew a check and paid the other's debt. He then kept him and talked with him till twelve o'clock. Before twelve o'clock two other men came and got their debts paid.

At twelve o'clock the evangelist let them go, and the people outside said to them, "He paid your debts, did he not?"

"Yes, he did," they answered. But the people laughed and made fun of them and would not believe it till they pulled out the checks, saying, "There it is; he has paid all the debts."

Then the people exclaimed, "What fools we were not to go in and get our debts paid!"

But they could not; it was too late. The door was closed; the time was up.

Then the man, as before, preached the Gospel, and great crowds went to hear him. He said, "Now, my friends, that is what God wants to do, but you will not let Him do it. Christ came to pay our debts, and that is the Gospel."

==========================See Page 6

Post by: nChrist on August 14, 2006, 10:57:45 PM
Good News for Everyone! - Page 6
By D. L. Moody

I could not have a better illustration of the Gospel than that. Every man owes God a debt he cannot pay. Would you insult the Almighty by offering the fruits of this frail body to atone for sin? Isaiah says,

"He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed."—Isa. 53:5.

Christ's Commission to Peter

I can imagine, when Christ said to the little band around Him, "Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel," Peter said, "Lord, do You really mean that we are to go back to Jerusalem and preach the Gospel to those men who murdered You?"

"Yes," said Christ to Peter, "go hunt up that man who spit in My face and tell him he shall have a seat in My kingdom if he will accept salvation as a gift.

"Yes, Peter, go hunt up that man who made that cruel crown of thorns and placed it on My brow and tell him I will have a crown ready for him when he comes into My kingdom, and no thorns in it. I will give him a crown of life.

"Peter, go hunt up the man who took a reed and brought it down over the cruel thorns, driving them into My brow, and tell him I will put a scepter in his hand, and he shall rule over the nations of the earth if he will accept salvation.

"Peter, go hunt up the man who drove the spear into My side and tell him there is a nearer way to My heart than that. Tell him I forgive him freely and that he can be saved if he will accept salvation as a gift.

"Peter, go hunt up the men who drove the nails into My hands and feet and tell them I forgive them freely. Tell them they shall have a seat in My kingdom if they will accept it. Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature."

Oh, may God help you to hear the Gospel tonight and to be saved!

My Decision for Christ

You have read the great and tender message above by the famous evangelist D. L. Moody. I want to add my word.

God means this Good News for you! You should decide today. Christ died for you. God wants to save you right now. Jesus says, "Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely" (Rev. 22:17). If you will only trust Jesus Christ today, He will save you. Will you now, as Mr. Moody said so well, "take" Jesus Christ as your Saviour? When you hear the facts of Christ's death, burial and resurrection and realize that He paid your sin debt there at Calvary, then it is right that you should accept Christ (take Him) by faith (trust Him) and thus be saved.

Won't you trust Him today as your Saviour? He came to save sinners. Are you a sinner? Don't you want to go to Heaven when you die? Then trust Him now. Tell Him in your own words,

Dear God, I know I am a sinner. I believe that Jesus died for me and arose triumphantly from the grave to be my Saviour. I fully acknowledge to You my need, my sin and my helpless condition, and I place my complete faith in Jesus to forgive me and to save me. Now help me to live for You and be a good Christian. Amen.

Title: Re: JESUS and the CROSS!!
Post by: kangkongking on February 06, 2009, 05:23:07 PM
to those who are lost and confused really need to take time to read in this thread. very refreshing and that's what they need. God speed.

Title: Re: JESUS and the CROSS!!
Post by: nChrist on February 07, 2009, 12:43:37 AM
to those who are lost and confused really need to take time to read in this thread. very refreshing and that's what they need. God speed.

I give thanks that GOD used D.L. Moody in many mighty ways. GOD also used D.L. Moody to influence and train many young pastors, evangelists, and missionaries - including many in my own family. Mr. Moody has been HOME with the LORD for some time, and I'm sure that he heard "Well done, good and faithful servant." D.L. Moody would have and did say "GOD gets all the GLORY." I give thanks that I have large amounts of older material from many of GOD'S Servants, and D.L. Moody has always been one of my favorites. I think that GOD gave D.L. Moody the ability to talk about GOD'S WORD clearly - in a way that most people understand. I'm sure that much of this ability was because D.L. Moody clearly loved GOD as the central focus of his life and wanted to yield to GOD completely.

Love In Christ,

2 Corinthians 4:1-18 ASV  1  Therefore seeing we have this ministry, even as we obtained mercy, we faint not:  2  but we have renounced the hidden things of shame, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by the manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.  3  And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled in them that perish:  4  in whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of the unbelieving, that the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should not dawn upon them.  5  For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus' sake.  6  Seeing it is God, that said, Light shall shine out of darkness, who shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.  7  But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the exceeding greatness of the power may be of God, and not from ourselves;  8  we are pressed on every side, yet not straitened; perplexed, yet not unto despair;  9  pursued, yet not forsaken; smitten down, yet not destroyed;  10  always bearing about in the body the dying of Jesus, that the life also of Jesus may be manifested in our body.  11  For we who live are always delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus may be manifested in our mortal flesh.  12  So then death worketh in us, but life in you.  13  But having the same spirit of faith, according to that which is written, I believed, and therefore did I speak; we also believe, and therefore also we speak;  14  knowing that he that raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also with Jesus, and shall present us with you.  15  For all things are for your sakes, that the grace, being multiplied through the many, may cause the thanksgiving to abound unto the glory of God.  16  Wherefore we faint not; but though our outward man is decaying, yet our inward man is renewed day by day.  17  For our light affliction, which is for the moment, worketh for us more and more exceedingly an eternal weight of glory;  18  while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.