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 11 
 on: April 18, 2019, 02:16:54 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
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From Grace Gems - Free and Public Domain:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________


THE SCRIPTURES AND JOY

Arthur Pink, 1932


"These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full" (John 15:11). As these precious words of Christ are pondered by the mind and treasured in the heart, they cannot but produce joy. A rejoicing heart comes from an increasing knowledge of and love for the truth as it is in Jesus. "Your words were found, and I did eat them; and your word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart" (Jer. 15:16). Yes, it is by feeding and feasting upon the words of the Lord that the soul is made fat, and we are made to sing and make melody in our hearts unto Him.

"Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy" (Ps. 43:4). As Spurgeon well said, "With what exultation should believers draw near unto Christ, who is the antitype of the altar! Clearer light should give greater intensity of desire. It was not the altar as such that the Psalmist cared for, for he was no believer in the heathenism of ritualism: his soul desired spiritual fellowship, fellowship with God Himself in very deed. What are all the rites of worship unless the Lord be in them; what, indeed, but empty shells and dry husks? Note the holy rapture with which David regards his Lord! He is not his joy alone, but his exceeding joy; not the fountain of joy, the giver of joy, or the maintainer of joy, but that joy itself. The margin has it, "The gladness of my joy"; that is, the soul, the essence, the very affections of my joy."

"Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labor of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no food; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation" (Hab. 3:17,18). That is something of which the worldling knows nothing; alas, that it is an experience to which so many professing Christians are strangers! It is in God that the fount of spiritual and everlasting joy originates; from Him it all flows forth. This was acknowledged of old by the Church when she said, "All my springs are in you" (Ps. 87:7). Happy the soul who has been truly taught this secret!

3. We profit from the Word when we are taught the great value of joy. Joy is to the soul what wings are to the bird, enabling us to soar above the things of earth. This is brought out plainly in Nehemiah 8:10: "The joy of the Lord is your strength." The days of Nehemiah marked a turning-point in the history of Israel. A remnant had been freed from Babylon and returned to Palestine. The Law, long ignored by the captives, was now to be established again as the rule of the newly-formed commonwealth. There had come a remembrance of the many sins of the past, and tears not unnaturally mingled with the thankfulness that they were again a nation, having a Divine worship and a Divine Law in their midst. Their leader, knowing full well that if the spirit of the people began to flag they could not face and conquer the difficulties of their position, said to them: "This day is holy unto the Lord: (this feast we are keeping is a day of devout worship; therefore, mourn not), neither be you sorry, for the joy of the Lord is your strength."

Confession of sin and mourning over the same have their place, and communion with God cannot be maintained without them. Nevertheless, when true repentance has been exercised, and things put right with God, we must forget "those things which are behind" and reach forth unto "those things which are before" (Phil. 3:13). And we can only press forward with alacrity as our hearts are joyful. How heavy the steps of him who approaches the place where a loved one lies cold in death! How energetic his movements as he goes forth to meet his bride! Lamentation unfits for the battles of life. Where there is despair there is no longer power for obedience. If there be no joy, there can be no worship.

My dear readers, there are tasks needing to be performed, service to others requiring to be rendered, temptations to be overcome, battles to be fought; and we are only experimentally fitted for them as our hearts are rejoicing in the Lord. If our souls are resting in Christ, if our hearts are filled with a tranquil gladness, work will be easy, duties pleasant, sorrow bearable, endurance possible. Neither contrite remembrance of past failures nor vehement resolutions will carry us through. If the arm is to smite with vigor, it must smite at the bidding of a light heart. Of the Savior Himself it is recorded, "Who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame" (Heb. 12:2).

4. We profit from the Word when we attend to the root of joy. The spring of joy is faith: "Now the God of hope fill you with all peace and joy in believing" (Rom. 15:13). There is a wondrous provision in the Gospel, both by what it takes from us and what it brings to us, to give a calm and settled glow to the Christian’s heart. It takes away the load of guilt by speaking peace to the stricken conscience. It removes the dread of God and the terror of death which weighs on the soul while it is under condemnation. It gives us God Himself as the portion of our hearts, as the object of our communion. The Gospel works joy, because the soul is at rest in God. But these blessings become our own only by personal appropriation. Faith must receive them, and when it does so the heart is filled with peace and joy. And the secret of sustained joy is to keep the channel open, to continue as we began. It is unbelief which clogs the channel. If there be but little heat around the bulb of the thermometer, no wonder that the mercury marks so low a degree. If there is a weak faith, joy cannot be strong. Daily do we need to pray for a fresh realization of the preciousness of the Gospel, a fresh appropriation of its blessed contents; and then there will be a renewing of our joy.

5. We profit from the Word when we are careful to maintain our joy. "Joy in the Holy Spirit" is altogether different from a natural buoyancy of Spirit. It is the product of the Comforter dwelling in our hearts and bodies, revealing Christ to us, answering all our need for pardon and cleansing, and so Setting us at peace with God; and forming Christ in us, so that He reigns in our souls, subduing us to His control. There are no circumstances of trial and temptation in which we may refrain from it, for the command is, "Rejoice in the Lord aways." He who gave this command knows all about the dark side of our lives, the sins and sorrows which beset us, the "much tribulation" through which we must enter the kingdom of God. Natural hilarity leaves the woes of our earthly lot out of its reckoning. It soon relaxes in the presence of life’s hard-ships: it cannot survive the loss of friends or health. But the joy to which we are exhorted is not limited to any set of circumstances or type of temperament; nor does it fluctuate with our varying moods and fortunes.

 12 
 on: April 18, 2019, 02:15:13 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
__________________________________________
From Grace Gems - Free and Public Domain:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________


THE SCRIPTURES AND JOY

Arthur Pink, 1932


The ungodly are ever seeking after joy, but they do not find it: they busy and weary themselves in the pursuit of it, yet all in vain. Their hearts being turned from the Lord, they look downward for joy, where it is not; rejecting the substance, they diligently run after the shadow, only to be mocked by it. It is the sovereign decree of heaven that nothing can make sinners truly happy but God in Christ; but this they will not believe, and therefore they go from creature to creature, from one broken cistern to another, inquiring where the best joy is to be found. Each worldly thing which attracts them says, It is found in me; but soon it disappoints. Nevertheless, they go on seeking it afresh today in the very thing which deceived them yesterday. If after many trials they discover the emptiness of one creature comfort, then they turn to another, only to verify our Lord’s word, "Whoever drinks of this water shall thirst again" (John 4:13).

Going now to the other extreme: there are some Christians who suppose it to be sinful to rejoice. No doubt many of our readers will be surprised to hear this but let them be thankful they have been brought up in sunnier surroundings, and bear with us while we labor with those less favored. Some have been taught—largely by implication and example, rather than by plain inculcation—that it is their duty to be gloomy. They imagine that feelings of joy are produced by the Devil appearing as an angel of light. They conclude that it is well-near a species of wickedness to be happy in such a world of sin as we are in. They think it presumptuous to rejoice in the knowledge of sins forgiven, and if they see young Christians so doing they tell them it will not be long before they are floundering in the Slough of Despond. To all such we tenderly urge the prayerful pondering of the remainder of this chapter.

"Rejoice evermore" (1 Thess. 5:16). It surely cannot be unsafe to do what God has commanded us. The Lord has placed no embargo on rejoicing. No, it is Satan who strives to make us hang up our harps. There is no precept in Scripture bidding us "Grieve in the Lord aways: and again I say, Grieve"; but there is an exhortation which bids us, "Rejoice in the Lord, O you righteous: for praise is lovely for the upright" (Ps. 33:1). Reader, if you are a real Christian (and it is high time you tested yourself by Scripture and made sure of this point), then Christ is yours, all that is in Him is yours. He bids you "Eat, O friends; drink, yes, drink abundantly, O beloved" (Song of Sol. 5:1): the only sin you may commit against His banquet of love is to stint yourself. "Let your soul delight itself in fatness"(Isa. 55:2) is spoken not to those already in heaven but to saints still on earth. This leads us to say that:

1. We profit from the Word when we perceive that joy is a duty. "Rejoice in the Lord aways: and again I say, Rejoice" (Phil. 4:4). The Holy Spirit here speaks of rejoicing as a personal, present and permanent duty for the people of God to carry out. The Lord has not left it to our option whether we should be glad or sad, but has made happiness an obligation. Not to rejoice is a sin of omission. Next time you meet with a radiant Christian, do not chide him, you dwellers in Doubting Castle, but chide yourselves; instead of being ready to call into question the Divine spring of his mirth, judge yourself for your doleful state.

It is not a carnal joy which we are here urging, by which we mean a joy which comes from carnal sources. It is useless to seek joy in earthly riches, for frequently they take to themselves wings and fly away. Some seek their joy in the family circle, but that remains entire for only a few years at most. No, if we are to "rejoice evermore" it must be in an object that lasts for evermore. Nor is it a fanatical joy we have reference to. There are some with an excitable nature who are happy only when they are half out of their minds; but terrible is the reaction. No, it is an intelligent, steady, heart delight in God Himself. Every attribute of God, when contemplated by faith, will make the heart sing. Every doctrine of the Gospel, when truly apprehended, will call forth gladness and praise.

Joy is a matter of Christian duty. Perhaps the reader is ready to exclaim, My emotions of joy and sorrow are not under my control; I cannot help being glad or sad as circumstances dictate. But we repeat, "Rejoice in the Lord" is a Divine command, and to a large extent obedience to it lies in one’s own power. I am responsible to control my emotions. True I cannot help being sorrowful in the presence of sorrowful thoughts, but I can refuse to let my mind dwell upon them. I can pour out my heart for relief unto the Lord, and cast my burden upon Him. I can seek grace to meditate upon His goodness, His promises, the glorious future awaiting me. I have to decide whether I will go and stand in the light or hide among the shadows. Not to rejoice in the Lord is more than a misfortune, it is a fault which needs to be confessed and forsaken.

2. We profit from the Word when we learn the secret of true joy. That secret is revealed in I John 1 :3,4: Truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full." When we consider the littleness of our fellowship with God, the shallowness of it, it is not to be wondered at that so many Christians are comparatively joyless. We sometimes sing, "Oh happy day that fixed my choice on You, my Savior and my God! Well may this glowing heart rejoice and tell its raptures all abroad." Yes, but if that happiness is to be maintained there must be a continued steadfast occupation of the heart and mind with Christ. It is only where there is much faith and consequent love that there is much joy.

"Rejoice in the Lord aways." There is no other object in which we can rejoice "aways." Everything else varies and is inconstant. What pleases us today may pall on us tomorrow. But the Lord is always the same, to be enjoyed in seasons of adversity as much as in seasons of prosperity. As an aid to this, the very next verse says, "Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand" (Phil. 4:5). Be temperate in connection with all external things; do not be taken with them when they seem most pleasing, nor troubled when displeasing. Do not be exalted when the world smiles upon you, nor dejected when it scowls. Maintain a stoical indifference to outward comforts: why be so occupied with them when the Lord Himself "is at hand"? If persecution be violent, if temporal losses be heavy, the Lord is "a very present help in trouble" (Ps. 46:1)—ready to support and support those who cast themselves upon Him. He will care for you, so "be anxious for nothing" (Phil. 4:6). Worldlings are haunted with carking cares, but the Christian should not be.

 13 
 on: April 18, 2019, 02:11:05 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
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Two Minutes With The Bible
From The Berean Bible Society

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For Questions Or Comments:  berean@execpc.com
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If Paul Wrote a Letter to Your Church
by Pastor Kevin Sadler


    "Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ" (2 Thes. 1:1).

In 2 Thessalonians 1:1, it's interesting to note that unlike other letters of Paul, he adds nothing to his name. He doesn’t say, "Paul, called to be an apostle"; "Paul, an apostle...by the will of God"; "Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ." Those familiar things by which he designates himself are omitted here.

By this he's showing that his apostleship, his call, role, title, leadership and office were not in question among the Thessalonian church, so he didn't need to make any reference to it. But Paul's apostleship is constantly in question today, despite his words in Romans 11:13:

    "For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office."

Paul is the apostle of the nations, the Gentiles. Paul, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, magnifies his office. We are to do the same. Paul was called by the will of God for this dispensation of grace. He was called to be an apostle for Christ to reveal to him the revelation of the mystery, the body of truth for this age, and for God to reveal His Son in him according to Christ's heavenly ministry today.

Paul is the one apostle of this dispensation. He is our apostle. Christ has revealed His will through Paul's thirteen letters for us to know what is Christ's mind, will, and heart for His Church, the Body of Christ, under grace. Is there confusion about Paul's role in your church? Perhaps your church knows Paul is our apostle, but makes no mention of it? If Paul wrote a letter to your church, how would he address it?

 14 
 on: April 18, 2019, 02:07:31 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
__________________________________________
From Grace Gems - Free and Public Domain:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
FREE E-mail Subscription:
http://www.gracegems.org/
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A worm, a gnat, a fly, a hair, a raisin, a skin of a grape

(Thomas Brooks, "A Cabinet of Choice Jewels" 1669)

"Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth!" Proverbs 27:1

Who can sum up . . .
  the many possible deaths which are still lurking in his own body;
  or the innumerable hosts of external dangers which beleaguer him on every side;
  or the invisible arrows which fly about his ears continually!

Who can tell how soon he may have his mortal wound given him by one or another of them? Now, how sad would it be for a man to have a summons to appear before God in that eternal world, before his heart and life are savingly changed!

The life of a man is but a shadow, a span, a vapor, a flower, etc.

Though there is but one way to come into the world--yet there are thousands of ways to be sent out of the world!

We carry about in our bodies the material for a thousand deaths--and may die a thousand different ways in several hours. As many senses, as many members, nay, as many pores as there are in the body--so many windows there are for death to enter in at!

Death needs not spend all his arrows upon us. A worm, a gnat, a fly, a hair, a raisin, a skin of a grape, the stumbling of a horse, the trip of a foot, the pick of a pin, the cutting of a fingernail, the cutting out of a corn; all these have been to others, and any of them may be to us--the means of our death within the space of a few days; nay, of a few hours; nay, of a few moments!

Yet I am sure that the worst of deaths, shall but translate true believers . . .
  from earth--to Heaven,
  from a wilderness--to a paradise,
  from misery--to glory, and
  from mixed and mutable enjoyments--to the pure and everlasting enjoyments of God!

To a believer, "The day of death better than the day of birth. It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting, for death is the destiny of every man; the living should take this to heart." Ecclesiastes 7:1-2

 15 
 on: April 18, 2019, 02:00:29 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
________________________________
The Patriot Post Digest 4-18-2019
From The Federalist Patriot
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ST. PATRICK’S CATHEDRAL ATTACK THWARTED? “A man was taken into custody in New York Wednesday night after entering St. Patrick’s Cathedral carrying two canisters of gasoline, two bottles of lighter fluid and two butane lighters, authorities said. … It is too early to consider terrorism but ‘I think, if added to that the events at the iconic location of Notre Dame and all of the publicity around that, I think this is an indicator of something that would be very suspicious,’ John Miller, deputy commissioner of intelligence & counterterrorism of the NYPD, said.” (Fox News24)
HUD’S ILLEGAL-IMMIGRATION CRACKDOWN: “The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) plans to crack down on illegal aliens who are taking advantage of public house assistance programs. … The new rule would prevent illegal aliens from living in homes that receive HUD funding, even if they’re not the ones actually receiving the assistance. Those who are caught with illegal aliens living in their homes will have to comply with the new rule or move to a different non-HUD location.” (Townhall25)
NEW CONSTRAINTS ON CUBA: “The Trump administration announced Wednesday that the U.S. will tighten restrictions on travel to Cuba, allowing only family visits to the island. … [National Security Advisor John] Bolton also announced that money sent to family members in Cuba would now be limited to $1,000 per person every three months, a change from the Obama administration policy that allowed unlimited remittances. ‘In no uncertain terms, the Obama administration’s policies toward Cuba have enabled the Cuban colonization of Venezuela today,’ Bolton said. ‘These new measures will help steer Americans dollars away from the Cuban regime.’” (National Review26)
DC’S HOMELESS SCHEME BACKFIRES: “D.C. lawmakers, in all of their wisdom, determined that poor, homeless people should be entitled to better housing than most middle-income earners. It went as well as anyone could have predicted. … The sudden inflow of poor D.C. residents into one pricey apartment complex has led to new complaints of ‘panhandling, marijuana smoke in the halls and feces discovered on a landing in the stairwell,’ according to the [Washington Post].” (Washington Examiner27)
FIRST, DO NO HARM: “Dozens of medical professionals in seven states were charged Wednesday with participating in the illegal prescribing of more than 32 million pain pills, including doctors who prosecutors said traded sex for prescriptions and a dentist who unnecessarily pulled teeth from patients to justify giving them opioids. The 60 people indicted include 31 doctors, seven pharmacists, eight nurse practitioners and seven other licensed medical professionals.” (The Washington Post28)
POLICY: An idea for student loans: Get rid of them (National Review29)
POLICY: The myth of the population bomb (American Enterprise Institute30)
HUMOR: Everyone who attended Bernie Sanders’ town hall has reported their wallet missing (The Babylon Bee31)
For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit In Our Sights32.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/62480-thursday-top-news-executive-summary


OPINION IN BRIEF

Victor Davis Hanson: “Unchecked tribalism historically leads to nihilism. Meritocracy is abandoned as bureaucrats select their own rather than the best-qualified. A Tower of Babel chaos ensues as the common language is replaced by myriad local tongues, in the fashion of fifth century imperial Rome. Class differences are subordinated to tribal animosities. Almost every contentious issue is distilled into racial or ethnic victims and victimizers. History always offers guidance to the eventual end game when people are unwilling to give up their chauvinism. Vicious tribal war can break out as in contemporary Syria. The nation can fragment into ethnic enclaves as seen in the Balkans. Or factions can stake out regional no-go zones of power as we seen in Iraq and Libya. In sum, the present identity-politics divisiveness is not a sustainable model for a multiracial nation, and it will soon reach its natural limits one way or another. On a number of fronts, if Americans do not address these growing crises, history will. And it won’t be pretty.”


SHORT CUTS

Upright: “Speech is not violence — and violence is not speech. Equating the two is the hallmark of a tyrannical worldview: If I can treat your speech as violence, then I am justified in using violence to suppress your speech. And yet that obvious fallacy has become the rallying cry in defense of execrable Rep. Ilhan Omar.” —Ben Shapiro

Non sequitur: “There are charities that we’ve donated to that we’ve recorded and itemized, others that we’ve donated to that we have not. I’ll tell you, I’m doing everything I can right now, spending this time with you, not with our kiddos, not back home in El Paso, because I want to sacrifice everything to make sure that we meet this moment of truth with everything we’ve got.” —Beto O'Rourke on why he gave less than 1% to charity in 2017

Braying Jenny: “Our GND [Green New Deal] rollout was really difficult. And it was done in a way that … it was really easy to hijack the narrative around it. It was, like, too fast. … I actually think the resolution itself is very solid, but … there were, like, competing documents that were rolled out, some prematurely, that muddied the waters. … It was just frustrating. Just intensely frustrating.” —Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Braying Jackass: “I think ‘Abolish ICE’ is a call to action on several levels. One is the literal interpretation of all abolishing ICE, which I support… I don’t believe that an agency that systematically and repeatedly violates human rights … can be reformed.” —Ocasio-Cortez

Demo-gogues: “Most Americans don’t want the conservative agenda that we’re now seeing, the extreme agenda that we’re seeing in Washington. In fact, it is precisely for that reason that they have to interfere with democracy, with things like voter suppression or clinging on an Electoral College that overrules the will of the American people. It is precisely because the American people, by and large, don’t want what they’re selling. … They are relying on manipulations of our political structure in order to keep their agenda in play.” —Mayor Pete Buttigieg

Race bait: “I’m saddened that the beautiful cathedral in France was damaged. But this is a prime example of privilege. … I’m also saddened that Black churches in Louisiana were burned down. I’m sure they held significance as well. They were barely acknowledged.” —Cincinnati councilwoman Tamaya Dennard

And last… “Where’s the outrage for the pressure that we put on a 17-year-old to borrow $100,000 [for college]? So much of that pressure comes from their mom and dad. It’s well-intended, but it’s kind of tragic. And where’s the outrage for the guidance counselors who continually say the best path for the most people just happens to be the most expensive? And the politicians and the lobbyists who exacerbate the same myth and the employers who still insist on only interviewing people with a four-year degree? … College is expensive because we’ve freed up an unlimited pile of free money and told an entire generation they were doomed to fail if they didn’t borrow it, and that’s happened in every single tax bracket, not just the top one. … Seven million jobs are available now. Most of them don’t require a four-year-degree. They require training. And yet we’re obsessed, not really with education, you know. What we are obsessed with is credentialing. And so people are buying diplomas. And they’re buying their degrees. It’s a diploma dilemma, honestly. It’s expensive. It is getting worse. It’s not just the kids holding the note. It is us.” —Mike Rowe

https://patriotpost.us/articles/62478-thursday-short-cuts


Join our editors and staff in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families. We also humbly ask prayer for your Patriot team, that our mission would seed and encourage the spirit of Liberty in the hearts and minds of our countrymen.

Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis

Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher

 16 
 on: April 18, 2019, 01:58:04 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
________________________________
The Patriot Post Digest 4-18-2019
From The Federalist Patriot
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The Patriot Post® · Mid-Day Digest
Apr. 18, 2019
https://patriotpost.us/digests/62485-mid-day-digest

THE FOUNDATION

“They define a republic to be a government of laws, and not of men.” —John Adams (1775)

https://patriotpost.us/fqd/62484-founders-quote-daily

IN TODAY’S EDITION

This just in: Trump did not collude with the Russians, or obstruct justice.1
Daily Features: More Analysis2, Columnists3, Headlines4, Opinion in Brief5, Short Cuts6, Memes7, and Cartoons8.

FEATURED ANALYSIS

It’s Mueller Time9

Attorney General William Barr held a press conference this morning to discuss the release of a slightly redacted version of Robert Mueller’s 400-page report on his two-year investigation into “Russian collusion.” In a Friday afternoon news dump on March 22, Mueller sent his report to the Justice Department. Two days later, Barr issued his four-page executive summary10 of it, showing that Mueller concluded two things: First, Donald Trump did not collude with Russia as Democrats have alleged for more than two years, and, second, it was inconclusive whether Trump had obstructed justice in the process of the investigation. The latter provided Democrats all the opening they needed to move into Phase Two — obstructing the MAGA agenda11.

Naturally, Democrats and their Leftmedia outlets also spent the intervening time insisting that Barr is hiding something and that Mueller’s report is actually incriminating against the president. Heads they win, tails Trump loses. Their goal is painfully obvious: Keep Trump on the political ropes with churned fake news through the 2020 election. After all, this collusion narrative propelled Democrats to victory in the 2018 election — ensuring that Vladimir Putin did interfere with American elections.

Even before Barr’s press conference, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer called it “pre-damage control” from Barr, who “is acting more like a Trump campaign spokesman than an independent agent of the law.” In a joint statement with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Chuck and Nancy complained about Barr’s “regrettably partisan handling of the Mueller report.” And they’re just objective bystanders.

With that setup, Barr faced America today and said, “As the Special Counsel’s report makes clear, the Russian government sought to interfere in [the 2016] election. But thanks to the special counsel’s thorough investigation, we now know that the Russian operatives who perpetrated these schemes did not have the cooperation of President Trump or the Trump campaign — or the knowing assistance of any other Americans for that matter.”

Moreover, in the matter of the hacked DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign emails, Barr noted, “The special counsel’s report did not find any evidence that members of the Trump campaign or anyone associated with the campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its hacking operations. In other words, there was no evidence of Trump campaign ‘collusion’ with the Russian government’s hacking.”

The bottom line, says Barr: “After nearly two years of investigation, thousands of subpoenas, and hundreds of warrants and witness interviews, the special counsel confirmed that the Russian government sponsored efforts to illegally interfere with the 2016 presidential election but did not find that the Trump campaign or other Americans colluded in those schemes.”

On the question of obstruction, Barr noted that Mueller “recounts 10 episodes involving the president” to consider a possible obstruction offense. Mueller was inconclusive, but Barr said, “After carefully reviewing the facts and legal theories outlined in the report, and in consultation with the Office of Legal Counsel and other Department lawyers, the Deputy Attorney General and I concluded that the evidence developed by the Special Counsel is not sufficient to establish that the president committed an obstruction-of-justice offense.”

Barr explained that decision:

In assessing the president’s actions discussed in the report, it is important to bear in mind the context. President Trump faced an unprecedented situation. As he entered into office, and sought to perform his responsibilities as president, federal agents and prosecutors were scrutinizing his conduct before and after taking office, and the conduct of some of his associates. At the same time, there was relentless speculation in the news media about the president’s personal culpability. Yet, as he said from the beginning, there was in fact no collusion. And as the special counsel’s report acknowledges, there is substantial evidence to show that the president was frustrated and angered by a sincere belief that the investigation was undermining his presidency, propelled by his political opponents, and fueled by illegal leaks. Nonetheless, the White House fully cooperated with the special counsel’s investigation, providing unfettered access to campaign and White House documents, directing senior aides to testify freely, and asserting no privilege claims. And at the same time, the president took no act that in fact deprived the special counsel of the documents and witnesses necessary to complete his investigation. Apart from whether the acts were obstructive, this evidence of non-corrupt motives weighs heavily against any allegation that the president had a corrupt intent to obstruct the investigation.

Let’s emphasize one line: “The White House fully cooperated with the special counsel’s investigation, providing unfettered access to campaign and White House documents, directing senior aides to testify freely, and asserting no privilege claims.” That utterly undercuts the Left’s obstruction claims.

Finally, addressing the question of what was redacted and by whom, Barr asserted that only DOJ attorneys working with the Special Counsel’s Office determined all redactions under four categories — grand-jury information, classified information, information related to ongoing investigations, and information that would violate privacy of individuals. President Trump and his lawyers did not request redactions or claim executive privilege in seeking to block the release of any part of the report. That release, by the way, is not the norm. These reports are not created for release.

Barr emphasized, “We will make available to a bipartisan group of leaders from several Congressional committees a version of the report with all redactions removed except those relating to grand-jury information.” The more redacted version has been released to the public12.

Now, stay tuned for the foreseeable future as pundits and armchair lawyers comb through Mueller’s report looking for something — anything — to support their presuppositions. Indeed, the questions Barr fielded were largely demanding that he answer for Democrat talking points designed to cast doubt upon Barr or Trump. What else would anyone expect from the real collusion partners13 — Democrats and their propagandists in the Leftmedia?

https://patriotpost.us/articles/62483-its-mueller-time


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 17 
 on: April 18, 2019, 09:04:58 AM 
Started by Soldier4Christ - Last post by Soldier4Christ
Gambling at Calvary

“They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.” (Psalm 22:18)

The 22nd Psalm is justly famous as a remarkable prophetic preview of the sufferings and death of the Lord Jesus on the cross, written by David approximately 1,000 years before it was fulfilled. It describes in accurate detail the sufferings of the Lord and the actions of the sneering spectators as they watched Him die.

One of the most heartless acts of the Roman soldiers carrying out the crucifixion was the indignity of stripping Him of the garments He was wearing and then dividing them among themselves, even gambling to determine who would get His seamless vesture. The significance of this cruel scene is indicated by the fact that it is one of the very few specific events in the life of Christ recorded in all four gospels.

We must not forget that the Lord Jesus Christ once had been arrayed, as it were, in beautiful garments that “smell of myrrh, and aloes, and cassia, out of the ivory palaces” (Psalm 45:8). But He who was “equal with God” chose to be “made in the likeness of men” that He might eventually suffer “even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:6-8) in order to save our unworthy souls. “For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich” (2 Corinthians 8:9).

He who had created the heavens, when He came to Earth, had to say that “the Son of man hath not where to lay his head” (Matthew 8:20). And His few remaining possessions were scavenged by His executioners as He died. Yet through His great sacrifice, He has provided “everlasting habitations” for us (Luke 16:9) and “all spiritual blessings in heavenly places” (Ephesians 1:3). Indeed, we do know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ! HMM

 18 
 on: April 17, 2019, 03:53:04 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
__________________________________________
From Grace Gems - Free and Public Domain:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________


THE SCRIPTURES AND THE PROMISES

Arthur Pink, 1932

6. We profit from the Word when we patiently await the fulfillment of God’s promises. God promised Abraham a son, but he waited many years for the performance of it. Simeon had a promise that he should not see death until he had seen the Lord’s Christ (Luke 2:26), yet it was not made good until he had one foot in the grave. There is often a long and hard winter between the sowing-time of prayer and the reaping of the answer. The Lord Jesus Himself has not yet received a full answer to the prayer He made in John chapter Seventeen, nineteen hundred years ago. Many of the best of God’s promises to His people will not receive their richest accomplishment until they are in glory. He who has all eternity at His disposal needs not to hurry. God often makes us tarry so that patience may have "her perfect work," yet let us not distrust Him. "For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come" (Hab. 2:3).

"These all died in faith, not having received the [fulfillment of the] promises but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them" (Heb. 11:13). Here is comprehended the whole work of faith: knowledge, trust, loving adherence. The "afar off" refers to the things promised; those they "saw" with the mind, discerning the substance behind the shadow, discovering in them the wisdom and goodness of God. They were "persuaded": they doubted not, but were assured of their participation in them and knew they would not disappoint them. "Embraced them" expresses their delight and veneration, the heart cleaving to them with love and cordially welcoming and entertaining them. The promises were the comfort and the stay of their souls in all their wanderings, temptations and sufferings.

Various ends are accomplished by God in delaying His execution of the promises. Not only is faith put to the proof, so that its genuineness may the more clearly appear; not only is patience developed, and hope given opportunity for exercise; but submission to the Divine will is fostered. "The weaning process is not accomplished: we are still hankering after the comforts which the Lord intends us forever to outgrow. Abraham made a great feast when his son Isaac was weaned; and, peradventure, our heavenly Father will do the same with us. Lie down, proud heart. Quit your idols; forsake your fond doings; and the promised peace will come unto you" (Christian. H. Spurgeon).

7. We profit from the Word when we make a right use of the promises. First, in our dealings with God Himself. When we approach unto His throne, it should be to plead one of His promises. They are to form not only the foundation for our faith to rest upon, but also the substance of our requests. We must ask according to God’s will if we are to be heard, and His will is revealed in those good things which He has declared He will bestow upon us. Thus we are to lay hold of His pledged assurances, spread them before Him, and say, "Do as you have said" (2 Samuel 7:25). Observe how Jacob pleaded the promise in Genesis 32:12; Moses in Exodus 32:13; David in Psalm 119:58; Solomon in 1 Kings 8:25; and do you, my Christian reader, like-wise.

Second, in the life we live in the world. In Hebrews 11:13, we not only read of the patriarchs discerning, trusting, and embracing the Divine promises, but we are also informed of the effects which they produced upon them: "and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims in the earth," which means they made a public avowal of their faith. They acknowledged (and by their conduct demonstrated) that their interests were not in the things of this world; they had a satisfying portion in the promises they had appropriated. Their hearts were set upon things above; for where a man’s heart is, there will his treasure be also.

"Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God" (2 Cor. 7:1); that is the effect they should produce in us, and will if faith really lays hold of them. "Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust" (2 Pet. 1:4). Now the Gospel and the precious promises, being graciously bestowed and powerfully applied, have an influence on purity of heart and behavior, and teach men to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, and to live soberly, righteously, and godly. Such are the powerful effects of gospel promises under the Divine influence as to make men inwardly partakers of the Divine nature and outwardly to abstain from and avoid the prevailing corruptions and vices of the times.

 19 
 on: April 17, 2019, 03:51:28 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
__________________________________________
From Grace Gems - Free and Public Domain:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________


THE SCRIPTURES AND THE PROMISES

Arthur Pink, 1932

3. We profit from the Word when we recognize the blessed scope of God’s promises. "A sort of affectation prevents some Christians from seeking religion, as if its sphere lay among the commonplaces of daily life. It is to them transcendental and dreamy; rather a creation of pious fiction than a matter of fact. They believe in God, after a fashion, for things spiritual, and for the life which is to be; but they totally forget that true godliness has the promise of the life which now is, as well as that which is to come. To them it would seem almost profanation to pray about the small matters of which daily life is made up. Perhaps they will be startled if I venture to suggest that this should make them question the reality of their faith. If it cannot bring them help in the little troubles of life, will it support them in the greater trials of death?" (C. H. Spurgeon).

"Godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come" (1 Tim. 4:8). Reader, do you really believe this, that the promises of God cover every aspect and particular of your daily life? Or have the "Dispensationalists" deluded you into supposing that the Old Testament belongs only to fleshly Jews, and that "our promises" respect spiritual and not material blessings? How many a Christian has derived comfort from "I will never leave you, nor forsake you" (Heb. 13:5); well, that is a quotation from Joshua 1:5! So, too, 2 Corinthians 7:1 speaks of "having these promises," yet one of them, referred to in 6:18, is taken from the book of Leviticus!

Perhaps someone asks, "But where am I to draw the line? Which of the Old Testament promises rightfully belong to me?" We answer that Psalm 84:11 declares, "The Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly". If you are really walking "uprightly" you are entitled to appropriate that blessed promise and count upon the Lord giving you whatever "good thing" is truly required by you. "My God shall supply all your need" (Phil. 4:19). If then there is a promise anywhere in His Word which just fits your present case and situation, make it your own as suited to your need." Steadfastly resist every attempt of Satan to rob you of any portion of your Father’s Word.

4. We profit from the Word when we make a proper discrimination between the promises of God. Many of the Lord’s people are frequently guilty of spiritual theft, by which we mean that they appropriate to themselves something to which they are not entitled, but which belongs to another. "Certain covenant engagements, made with the Lord Jesus Christ, as to His elect and redeemed ones, are altogether without condition so far as we are concerned; but many other wealthy words of the Lord contain stipulations which must be carefully regarded, or we shall not obtain the blessing. One part of my reader’s diligent search must be directed toward this most important point. God will keep His promise to you; only see you to it that the way in which He conditions His engagement is carefully observed by you. Only when we fulfill the requirements of a conditional promise can we expect that promise to be fulfilled to us" (Christian. H. Spurgeon).

Many of the Divine promises are addressed to particular characters, or, more correctly speaking, to particular graces. For example, in Psalm 25:9, the Lord declares that He will "guide in judgment" the meek; but if I am out of communion with Him, if I am following a course of self-will, if my heart is haughty, then I am not justified in taking to myself the comfort of this verse. Again, in John 15:7, the Lord tells us, "If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, you shall ask what you will, and it shall be done unto you." But if I am not in experimental communion with Him, if His commands are not regulating my conduct, then my prayers will remain unanswered. While God’s promises proceed from pure grace, yet it ever needs to be remembered that grace reigns "through righteousness" (Rom. 5:21) and never sets aside human responsibility. If I ignore the laws of health I must not be surprised that sickness prevents me enjoying many of God’s temporal mercies: in like manner, if I neglect His precepts I have myself to blame if I fail to receive the fulfillment of many of His promises.

Let none suppose that by His promises God has obligated Himself to ignore the requirements of His holiness: He never exercises any one of His perfections at the expense of another. And let none imagine that God would be magnifying the sacrificial work of Christ were He to bestow its fruits upon impenitent and careless souls. There is a balance of truth to be preserved here; alas, that it is now so frequently lost, and that under the pretense of exalting Divine grace men are really "turning it into lasciviousness." How often one hears quoted, "Call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver you" (Ps. 50:15). But that verse begins with "And," and the preceding clause is "Pay your vows unto the most High!" Again, how frequently is "I will guide you with mine eye" (Ps. 32:8) seized by people who pay no attention to the context! But that is God’s promise to one who has confessed his "transgression" unto the Lord (verse 5). If, then, I have unconfessed sin on my conscience, and have leaned on an arm of flesh or sought help from my fellows, instead of waiting only on God (Ps. 62:5), then I have no right to count upon the Lord’s guiding me with His eye—which necessarily presupposes that I am walking in close communion with Him, for I cannot see the eye of another while at a distance from him.

5. We profit from the Word when we are enabled to make God’s promises our support and stay. This is one reason why God has given them to us; not only to manifest His love by making known His benevolent designs, but also to comfort our hearts and develop our faith. Had God so pleased He could have bestowed His blessings without giving us notice of His purpose. The Lord might have given us all the mercies we need without pledging Himself to do so. But in that case we could not have been believers; faith without a promise would be a foot without ground to stand upon. Our tender Father planned that we should enjoy His gifts twice over: first by faith, and then by fruition. By this means He wisely weans our hearts away from things seen and perishing and draws them onward and upward to those things which are spiritual and eternal.

If there were no promises there would not only be no faith, but no hope either. For what is hope but the expectation of the things which God has declared He will give us? Faith looks to the Word promising, hope looks to the performance thereof. Thus it was with Abraham; "Who against hope believed in hope. . .and being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah’s womb; he staggered not. . .through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God" (Rom. 4:18, 20). Thus it was with Moses: "Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he had respect unto the recompense of the reward" (Heb. 11:26). Thus it was with Paul; "I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me" (Acts 27:25). Is it so with you, dear reader? Are the promises of Him who cannot lie the resting-place of your poor heart?

 20 
 on: April 17, 2019, 03:50:04 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
__________________________________________
From Grace Gems - Free and Public Domain:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________


THE SCRIPTURES AND THE PROMISES

Arthur Pink, 1932


The Divine promises make known the good pleasure of God’s will to His people, to bestow upon them the riches of His grace. They are the outward testimonies of His heart, who from all eternity loves them and fore-appointed all things for them and concerning them. In the person and work of His Son, God has made an all-sufficient provision for their complete salvation, both for time and for eternity. To the intent that they might have a true, clear and spiritual knowledge of the same, it has pleased the Lord to set it before them in the exceeding great and precious promises which are scattered up and down in the Scriptures as so many stars in the glorious firmament of grace; by which they may be assured of the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning them, and take sanctuary in Him accordingly, and through this medium have real communion with Him in His grace and mercy at all times, no matter what their case or circumstances may be.

The Divine promises are so many declarations to bestow some good or remove some ill. As such they are a most blessed making known and manifesting of God’s love to His people. There are three steps in connection with God’s love: first, His inward purpose to exercise it; the last, the real execution of that purpose; but in between there is the gracious making known of that purpose to the beneficiaries not only show His love fully to them in due time, but in the interim He will have us informed of His benevolent designs, that we may sweetly rest in His love, and stretch ourselves comfortably upon His sure promises. There we are able to say, "How precious also are your thoughts unto me, 0 God! how great is the sum of them" (Ps. 139:17).

In 2 Peter 1:4, the Divine promises are spoken of as "exceeding great and precious." As Spurgeon pointed out, "greatness and preciousness seldom go together, but in this instance they are united in an exceeding degree". When Jehovah is pleased to open His mouth and reveal His heart He does so in a manner worthy of Himself, in words of superlative power and richness. To quote again the beloved London pastor: "They come from a great God, they come to great sinners, they work for us great results, and deal with great matters." While the natural intellect is capable of perceiving much of their greatness, only the renewed heart can taste their ineffable preciousness, and say with David, "How sweet are your words unto my taste! yes, sweeter then honey to my mouth" (Ps. 119:103).

1. We profit from the Word when we perceive to whom the promises belong. They are available Only to those who are in Christ. "For all the promises of God in him [the Lord Jesus] are yes, and in him Amen" (2 Cor. I :20). There can be no communion between the thrice holy God and sinful creatures except through a Mediator who has satisfied Him on their behalf. Therefore must that Mediator receive from God all good for His people, and they must have it at second hand through Him. A sinner might just as well petition a tree as call upon God for mercy while he despises and rejects Christ.

Both the promises and the things promised are made over to the Lord Jesus and conveyed unto the saints from Him. "This is the [chief and grandest] promise that he has promised us, even eternal life" (1 John 2:25), and as the same epistle tells us, "This life is in his Son" (5:11). This being so, what good can they who are not yet in Christ have by the promises? None at all. A man out of Christ is out of the favor of God, yes, he is under His wrath; the Divine threatenings and not the promises are his portion. Solemn, solemn consideration is it that those who are "without Christ" are "aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world" (Eph. 2:12). Only "the children of God" are "the children of the promise" (Rom. 9:8). Make sure, my reader, that you are one of them.

How terrible, then, is the blindness and how great is the sin of those preachers who indiscriminately apply the Divine promises to the saved and unsaved alike! They are not only taking "the children’s bread" and casting it to the "dogs," but they are "handling the word of God deceitfully" (2 Cor. 4:2), and beguiling immortal souls. And they who listen to and heed them are little less guilty, for God holds all responsible to search the Scriptures for themselves, and test whatever they read or hear by that unerring standard. If they are too lazy to do so, and prefer blindly to follow their blind guides, then their blood is on their own heads. Truth has to be "bought" (Prov. 23:23), and those who are unwilling to pay the price must go without it.

2. We profit from the Word when we labor to make the promises of God our own. To do this we must first take the trouble to become really acquainted with them. It is surprising how many promises there are in Scripture which the saints know nothing about, the more so seeing that they are the peculiar treasure of believers, the substance of faith’s heritage lying in them. True, Christians are already the recipients of wondrous blessings, yet the capital of their wealth, the bulk of their estate, is only prospective. They have already received an "earnest," but the better part of what Christ has purchased for them lies yet in the promise of God. How diligent, then, should they be in studying His testamentary will, familiarizing themselves with the good things which the Spirit "has revealed" (1 Cor. 2:10), and seeking to take an inventory of their spiritual treasures!

Not only must I search the Scriptures to find out what has been made over to me by the everlasting covenant, but I need also to meditate upon the promises, to turn them over and over in my mind, and cry unto the Lord for spiritual understanding of them. The bee would not extract honey from the flowers as long as he only gazed upon them. Nor will the Christian derive any real comfort and strength from the Divine promises until his faith lays hold of and penetrates to the heart of them. God has given no assurance that the dilatory shall be fed, but He has declared, "the soul of the diligent shall be made fat" (Prov. 13:4). Therefore did Christ say, "Labor not for the food which perishes, but for that food which endures unto everlasting life" (John 6:27). It is only as the promises are stored up in our minds that the Spirit brings them to remembrance at those seasons of fainting when we most need them.

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