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Our Lord Jesus Christ loves you.
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nChrist
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« Reply #4110 on: January 22, 2018, 05:52:37 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

The bulk of my congregation were burglars, highway robbers, and poor unhappy prostitutes!

(John Newton)

"But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display His unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on Him and receive eternal life!" 1 Timothy 1:16

You would have liked to have been with me last Wednesday, when I preached at the prison. The bulk of my congregation were burglars, highway robbers, and poor unhappy prostitutes--such as infest the streets of this city, sunk in sin, and lost to shame. I had a hundred or more of these criminals before me.

I preached from 1 Timothy 1:15, "Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners--of whom I am the worst!" and began with telling them my own story. This gained their attention more than I expected. I spoke to them nearly an hour and a half. I shed many tears myself, and saw some of them shed tears likewise.

Ah! Had you seen their present condition, and could you hear the history of some of them, it would make you sing, "O to grace, how great a debtor, daily I'm constrained to be!"

By nature, they were no worse than the most upright and moral people; and there was doubtless a time when many of them little thought what they would live to do and suffer.

I might have been, like them, in chains--and one of them have come to preach to me, had the Lord so pleased!

In my days of folly and vanity, I was a chief sinner indeed--a vile blasphemer, and profligate to an extreme! But it has pleased Him to set me forth as a pattern of His mercy to other chief sinners--that none may despair when they see me!

"By the grace of God I am what I am!" 1 Corinthians 15:10
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« Reply #4111 on: January 22, 2018, 05:53:56 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

It is no wonder that they were so dejected!

(James Buchanan, "The Office and Work of the Holy Spirit" 1842)

"I am now going away to Him who sent Me . . . Because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart." John 16:5-6

It is no wonder that they were so dejected in the prospect of losing the personal presence of Him who was . . .
  their kindest friend,
  their unwearied benefactor,
  their patient teacher--whose . . .
wisdom was their guide,
power was their defense,
sympathy was their consolation,
approval their was reward, and
salvation was their highest hope.

They were attached to Him as a personal Friend--by the strongest ties of gratitude, and admiration, and love.

They had long associated with Him on terms of most endearing intimacy.

They had often looked with delight on His compassionate countenance, 'full of grace and truth'.

They had listened to his public preaching and His private conversation, when 'He spoke as never any man spoke'.

They had witnessed His miracles of mercy, and His life of unwearied beneficence, 'when He went about continually doing good'.

They had themselves received at His hands every benefit which divine love, combined with the most perfect human kindness, could bestow.

And can we deem it astonishing, if the thought of parting with such a Friend, whose appearance, and voice, and person were entwined with their fondest affections--filled their hearts with especial sadness?
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« Reply #4112 on: January 26, 2018, 05:45:07 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

Weak and singular and odd!

(John Newton)

A consistent Christian, whose integrity, humility, and philanthropy, mark his character and adorn his profession--will in time command respect.

But his attachment to the unfashionable truths of the Gospel, and his separation from the maxims and pursuits of the world--will render him weak and singular and odd in their eyes.

"If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated Me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you!" John 15:18-19
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« Reply #4113 on: January 26, 2018, 05:46:15 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

The cause of all His anguish!

(John Newton)

"My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?" Mark 15:34

Come, friend, let us leave our troubles to themselves for a while--and let us walk to Golgotha, and there take a view of His troubles!

Behold the Beloved of God, perfectly spotless and holy--yet made an example of the severest vengeance. Behold Him . . .
  prostrate and agonizing in the garden;
  enduring the vilest insults from wicked men;
  torn with whips, and nails, and thorns;
  suspended, exposed, wounded, and bleeding upon the cross;
  heavily distressed, being forsaken by His Father.

Sin was the cause of all His anguish! He stood in the place of sinners--and therefore He was not spared. Not any, or all, the evils which the world has known, afford such proof of the dreadful effects and detestable nature of sin, as the knowledge of Christ crucified!
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« Reply #4114 on: January 26, 2018, 05:47:29 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

He is a very well-behaved God!

(A.W. Tozer)

The God of modern evangelicalism rarely astonishes anybody.

He manages to stay pretty much with the church's constitution--and never breaks her by-laws.

He is a very well-behaved God, and very denominational, and very much like one of us.

We ask Him to help us when we're in trouble--and expect Him to watch over us when we're asleep.

The God of modern evangelicalism isn't a God I could have much respect for!

"They say: How can God know? Does the Most High have knowledge?" Psalm 73:11

"A son honors his father, and a servant his master. If I am a father--then where is the honor due to Me? If I am a master--then where is the respect due to Me?" says the LORD Almighty. "It is you, O priests, who despise My name!" Malachi 1:6

"These things you have done, and I kept silent. You thought I was altogether like you. But I will rebuke you and accuse you to your face!" Psalm 50:21
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« Reply #4115 on: January 28, 2018, 11:53:20 AM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

She has listened to the blandishments of those who would woo her away!

(A.W. Tozer)

"They admitted that they were strangers and pilgrims on earth. People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country--a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them!" Hebrews 11:14-16

Let no one apologize for the powerful emphasis which Christianity lays upon the doctrine of the world to come.

The church is constantly being tempted to accept this present world as her home, and sometimes she has listened to the blandishments of those who would woo her away and use her for their own ends. But if she is wise, she will consider that she stands in the valley between the mountain peaks of eternity past and eternity to come. The past is gone forever--and the present is passing as swift as the shadow on the sundial of Ahaz. Even if the earth should continue a million years, not one of us could stay to enjoy it.

We would do well, to think of the long tomorrow!

"They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever!" Revelation 20:10

"And they will reign for ever and ever!" Revelation 22:5

"To Him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb--be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!" Revelation 5:13
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« Reply #4116 on: January 28, 2018, 11:54:26 AM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

When the bird of thought was let go!

(A.W. Tozer)

Therefore, holy brothers, who share in the heavenly calling--fix your thoughts on Jesus!" Hebrews 3:1

"Bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ." 2 Corinthians 10:5

What we think about when we are free to think about what we will--that is what we are, or will soon become.

Anyone who wishes to check on his true spiritual condition may do so by noting what his voluntary thoughts have been over the last hours or days. What has he thought about, when free to think of what he pleased? Toward what has his inner heart turned, when it was free to turn where it would?

When the bird of thought was let go, did it fly out like the raven to settle upon floating carcasses--or did it like the dove circle and return again to the ark of God? Such a test is easy to run, and if we are honest with ourselves we can discover not only what we are--but what we are going to become. We will soon be the sum of our voluntary thoughts!

Long practice in the art of mental prayer (that is, talking to God inwardly as we work or travel) will help to form the habit of holy thoughts.

"For as he thinks within himself, so he is." Proverbs 23:7

"Oh, Lord, You know the constant struggle which we have with our thought life. You know how often our thoughts settle on rotten carcasses. Take control of my thoughts today, and move me along in the development of the habit of holy thought. Amen."
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« Reply #4117 on: January 29, 2018, 06:15:48 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

Rules for Self Knowledge:
  1. What we want most.
  2. What we think about most.
  3. How we use our money.
  4. What we do with our leisure time.
  5. The company we enjoy.
  6. Who and what we admire.

"Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things!" Colossians 3:1-2
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« Reply #4118 on: February 01, 2018, 05:38:43 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

I labor under a complication of disorders!

(John Newton)

I have often detected the two vile abominations--self-will and self-righteousness insinuating themselves into all that I do!

God has mercifully convinced me that I labor under a complication of disorders--summed up in the word, SIN.

He has graciously revealed Himself to me as the infallible Physician--and has enabled me, as such, to commit myself to Him, and to expect my cure from His hand alone.

Yet how often, instead of thankfully accepting His prescriptions--I have foolishly and presumptuously ventured to prescribe to Him, and to point out how I would have Him to deal with me!

How often have I thought that something was necessary for me--which He saw best to deny; and that I could have done better without those dispensations which His wisdom and grace have appointed to work for my good!

Thankfully, He is never weary of me--nor has He left me to my own management!

How inconsistent I am! To acknowledge that I am blind, to entreat Him to lead me--and yet to want to choose my own way, all in the same breath!
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« Reply #4119 on: February 01, 2018, 05:39:56 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

This precept is very extensive and important

(John Newton)

"Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind . . ." Romans 12:2

This precept is very extensive and important. As believers, we are strangers and pilgrims upon earth. Heaven is our country--and the Lord is our King. We are to be known as His subjects--and therefore it is His pleasure that we do not speak the language or adopt the customs, of the land in which we sojourn.

We must not conform to the spirit of the world. As members of society, we have a part to act in it, in common with others. But though our business is the same--our principles and ends are to be entirely different!

We must not conform to the maxims of the world. The world in various instances calls evil, good--and good, evil. But we have recourse to the law and to the testimony, and are to judge of things by the unerring Word of God--uninfluenced by the determination of the great or the many.

We must not conform to the world in their amusements and diversions. We are to mix with the world, only so far as our necessary and providential connections engage us--so far as we have a reasonable expectation of doing or getting good, and no farther.

"What fellowship has light with darkness, or what concord has Christ with Belial?" What call can a believer have into those places and companies . . .
  where everything tends to promote a spirit of dissipation;
  where the fear of God has no place;
  where things are purposely disposed to inflame or indulge corrupt and sinful appetites and passions, and to banish all serious thoughts of God and ourselves?

If it is our duty  . . .
  to redeem time,
  to walk with God,
  to do all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,
  to follow the example which He set for us when He was upon the earth,
  and to work out our salvation with fear and trembling
--then it must of course be our duty to avoid a conformity with the world in those vain and sensual diversions, which stand in as direct contradiction to a spiritual frame of mind, as darkness to light.
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« Reply #4120 on: February 03, 2018, 02:45:39 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

The God of contemporary Christianity!

(A.W. Tozer)

"These things you have done, and I kept silent. You thought that I was altogether like you! But I will rebuke you and accuse you to your face!" Psalm 50:21

The God of contemporary Christianity is only slightly superior to the pagan gods of ancient Greece and Rome--if indeed He is not actually inferior to them, in that He is weak and helpless--while they at least had some imagined power.

Among the sins to which the human heart is prone, hardly any other is more hateful to God than idolatry; for idolatry is at bottom a libel on His character. The idolatrous heart assumes that God is other than He is--in itself a monstrous sin--and substitutes for the true God, one made after its own likeness. Always this god will conform to the image of the one who created it--and will be base or pure, cruel or kind, according to the moral state of the mind from which it emerges.

The essence of idolatry, is the entertainment of thoughts about God that are unworthy of Him. Wrong ideas about God are not only the fountain from which the polluted waters of idolatry flow--they are themselves idolatrous. The idolater simply imagines things about God--and acts as if they were true.

If we insist upon trying to imagine Him--we end with an idol, made not with hands but with thoughts. And an idol of the mind, is as offensive to God as an idol of the hand!

Before a Christian Church goes into a decline, there must first be a corrupting of her Scriptural thoughts of God. She simply gives a wrong answer to the question, "What is God like?"--and goes downhill from there. Though she may continue to cling to a sound nominal creed--her practical working creed has become false. The masses of her adherents come to believe that God is different from what He actually is--and that is heresy of the most insidious and deadly kind!

The heaviest obligation lying upon the Christian Church today is to purify and elevate her concept of God, until it is once more worthy of Him--and of her!
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« Reply #4121 on: February 04, 2018, 04:29:07 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

The most important thing about us!

(A.W. Tozer)

What comes into our minds when we think about God, is the most important thing about us!

The history of mankind will probably show that no people has ever risen above its religion, and man's spiritual history will positively demonstrate that no religion has ever been greater than its idea of God. Worship is pure or base--as the worshiper entertains high or low thoughts of God.

For this reason, the gravest question before the Church is always God Himself. And the most portentous fact about any man, is not what he at a given time may say or do--but what he in his deep heart conceives God to be like.

Always the most revealing thing about the Church is her idea of God, just as her most significant message is what she says about Him or leaves unsaid--for her silence is often more eloquent than her speech.

Without doubt, the mightiest thought the mind can entertain, is the thought of God. The weightiest word in any language, is its word for God.

That our idea of God correspond as nearly as possible to the true being of God, is of immense importance to us. Compared with our actual thoughts about Him--our creedal statements are of little consequence.

A right conception of God is basic not only to theology--but to practical Christian living as well. There is scarcely an error in doctrine or a failure in applying Christian ethics--which cannot be finally traced to imperfect and ignoble thoughts about God.

It is my opinion that the current Christian conception of God is so decadent as to be utterly beneath the dignity of the Most High God, and actually to constitute something amounting to a moral calamity!
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« Reply #4122 on: February 05, 2018, 07:05:24 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

My coward heart!

(A.W. Tozer)

Father, I want to know You--but my coward heart fears to give up its toys. I cannot part with them without inward bleeding, and I do not try to hide from You the terror of the parting. I come trembling, but I do come. Please root from my heart all those things which I have cherished so long and which have become a very part of my self--so that You may reign there without a rival. Deliver me from the tyranny of things--and from the idols of my heart. In Jesus' name, Amen.
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« Reply #4123 on: February 06, 2018, 06:42:59 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

The error of textualism

(A.W. Tozer)

"The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned." 1 Corinthians 2:14

"But the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name--He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you." John 14:26

"When He, the Spirit of truth comes--He will guide you into all truth." John 16:13

The doctrine of the inability of the human mind to understand divine teaching and the need for divine illumination, is so fully developed in the New Testament, that it is nothing short of astonishing that we should have gone so far astray concerning the whole issue.

Evangelicalism has stood aloof from Liberalism in self-conscious superiority, and has on its own part fallen into the error of textualism--which is simply orthodoxy without the Holy Spirit.

Everywhere among Conservatives we find people who are Bible-taught, but not Spirit-taught. They conceive truth to be something which they can grasp with the mind. If a man holds to the fundamentals of the Christian faith--then he is thought to possess divine truth.

But that is an incorrect assumption. The Bible is a supernatural book--and can be understood only by supernatural aid!

Conservative Christians in this day are stumbling over this truth. We need to re-examine the whole thing. We need to learn that truth consists not in correct doctrine--but in correct doctrine plus the inward enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. A re-preachment of this vital truth could result in a fresh breath from God upon a stale and suffocating orthodoxy.

Most Christians see Bible knowledge as something to be stored away in the mind, along with an inert mass of other facts.

The modern scientist has lost God, amid the wonders of His world.
And we Christians are in real danger of losing God, amid the wonders of His Word!

Scripture truths must be experienced--before we can really know them.

"Lord, I do believe in the authority of the Scriptures, and thank You for that foundation of truth. But I need to remember that even the inspired text is not alive--until the Holy Spirit takes it and enlightens the recipients. May the Spirit indeed take what I teach and embed it in the hearts and minds of my hearers. Amen."
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« Reply #4124 on: February 08, 2018, 04:40:49 PM »

__________________________________________
From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________

The Bibles of worldlings!

(Charles Spurgeon, 1889)

Newspapers are the Bibles of worldlings!
How diligently they read them!

Here they find . . .
  their law and profits,
  their judges and chronicles,
  their epistles and revelations!
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