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« Reply #30 on: January 07, 2007, 02:31:40 PM »

The Beatific Vision

"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God." —Matthew 5:8

Here is Heaven! This "word of Jesus" represents the future state of the glorified to consist not in locality, but in character; the essence of its bliss is the full vision and fruition of God. Our attention is called from all vague and indefinite theories about the circumstantials of future happiness. The one grand object of contemplation—the "glory which excels," is the sight of God Himself! The one grand practical lesson enforced on His people, is the cultivation of that purity of heart without which none could see, or (even could we suppose it possible to be admitted to see Him) none could enjoy God! "The kingdom of Heaven comes not with observation—the kingdom of God is within you."

Reader, have you attained any of this heart-purity and heart-preparation? It has been beautifully said that "the openings of the streets of heaven are on earth." Even here we may enjoy, in the possession of holiness, some foretaste of coming bliss. Who has not felt that the happiest moments of their lives were those of close walking with God—nearness to the mercy-seat—when self was surrendered, and the eye was directed to the glory of Jesus, with most single, unwavering, undivided aim? What will Heaven be, but the entire surrender of the soul to Him, without any bias to evil, without the fear of corruption within echoing to temptation without; every thought brought into captivity to the obedience of Christ; no contrariety to His mind; all in blessed unison with His will; the whole being impregnated with holiness—the intellect purified and ennobled, consecrating all its powers to His service—memory, a holy repository of pure and hallowed recollections—the affections, without one competing rival, purged from all the dross of earthliness—the love of God, the one supreme animating passion—the glory of God, the motive principle interfused through every thought, and feeling, and action of the life immortal; in one word, the heart a clear fountain; no sediment to dim its purity, "no angel of sorrow" to come and trouble the pool! The long night of life over, and this is the glory of the eternal morrow which succeeds it! "I shall be satisfied when I awake, with Your likeness."

Yes, this is Heaven, subjectively and objectively—purity of heart and "God all in all!" Much, doubtless, there may and will be of a subordinate kind, to intensify the bliss of the redeemed; communion with saints and angels; re-admission into the society of death-divided friends. But all these will fade before the great central glory, "God Himself shall be with them, and be their God; they shall see His face!" Believers have been aptly called 'sunflowers'—turning their faces as the sunflower towards the Sun of Righteousness, and hanging their leaves in sadness and sorrow when that Sun is away. It will be in Heaven the emblem is complete. There, every flower in the heavenly garden will be turned Godwards, bathing its tints of loveliness in the glory that excels! Reader, may it be yours, when canopied by that cloudless sky, to know all the marvels contained in these few glowing words, "We shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is."

"And every man that has this hope in him purifies himself even as he is pure."
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« Reply #31 on: January 07, 2007, 02:32:11 PM »

The Many Mansions

"IN MY FATHER'S HOUSE ARE MANY MANSIONS." —John 14:2

What a 'home aspect' there is in this "word of Jesus!" He comforts His Church by telling those who soon their wilderness wanderings will be finished—the tented tabernacle suited to their present probation-state exchanged for the enduring "mansion!" Nor will it be any strange dwelling—a Father's home—a Father's welcome awaits them. There will be accommodation for all. Thousands have already entered its shining gates—patriarchs, prophets, saints, martyrs, young and old, and still there is room!

The pilgrim's motto on earth is, "Here we have no continuing city." Even "Sabbath tents" must be taken down. Holy seasons of communion must terminate. "Arise, let us go from here!" is a summons which disturbs the sweetest moments of tranquility in the Church below. But in Heaven, every believer becomes a pillar in the temple of God, and "he shall go no more out." Here on earth, it is but the lodging of a wayfarer turning aside to tarry for the brief night. Here we are but temporary tenants— our possessions are but moveables—ours today, gone tomorrow. But these many "mansions" are an incorruptible and unfading inheritance. Nothing can touch the heavenly inheritance. Once within the Father's house, and we are in the house forever!

Think, too, of Jesus, gone to prepare these mansions— "I go to prepare a place for you." What a wondrous thought—Jesus now busied in Heaven in His Church's behalf! He can find no abode in all His wide dominions, befitting as a permanent dwelling for His ransomed ones. He says, "I will make a new heavens and a new earth. I will found a special kingdom—I will rear eternal mansions expressly for those I have redeemed with my blood!"

Reader, let the prospect of a dwelling in this "house of the Lord forever," reconcile you to any of the roughnesses or difficulties in your present path—to your pilgrim provision and pilgrim fare. Let the distant beacon light, that so cheeringly speaks of a Home brighter and better far than the happiest of earthly ones, lead you to forget the intervening billows, or to think of them only as wafting you nearer and nearer to your desired haven! "Would," says a saint, who has now entered on his rest, "that one could read, and write, and pray, and eat and drink, and compose one's self to sleep, as with the thought—soon to be in heaven, and that forever and ever!"

"My Father's house!" How many a departing spirit has been cheered and consoled by the sight of these glorious Mansions looming through the mists of the dark valley—the tears of weeping friends rebuked by the gentle chiding—"If you loved me, you would rejoice, because I said, I go unto my Father!" Death truly is but the entrance to this our Father's house. We speak of the "shadow of death"—it is only the shadow which falls on the portico as we stand for a moment knocking at the longed-for gate. Then next—a Father's voice of welcome is heard—"Son! you are always to be with me, and all that I have is yours."
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« Reply #32 on: January 07, 2007, 02:32:40 PM »

The Promised Return

"I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there you may be also." —John 14:3

Another "word of promise" concerning the Church's "blessed hope." Orphaned pilgrims, dry your tears! Soon the Morning Hour will strike, and the sighs of a groaning and burdened creation will be heard no more. Earth's six thousand years of toil and sorrow are waning; the Millennial Sabbath is at hand. Jesus will soon be heard to repeat concerning all his sleeping saints, what He said of old regarding one of them: "I go to awake them out of sleep!" Your beloved Lord's first coming was in humiliation and woe; His name was, "the Man of Sorrows;" He had to travel on, amid darkness and desertion, His blood-stained path; a crown of thorns was the only crown He bore. But soon He will come "the second time without a sin-offering, unto salvation," never again to leave His Church, but to receive those who followed Him in His cross, to be everlasting partakers with Him in His crown! He may seem to tarry. External nature, in her unvarying and undeviating sequences, gives no indication of His approach. Centuries have elapsed since He uttered the promise, and still He lingers; the everlasting hills wear no streak of approaching dawn; we seem to listen in vain for the noise of His chariot wheels. "But the Lord is not slack concerning His promise;" He gives you "this word" in addition to many others as a keepsake—a pledge and guarantee for the certainty of His return, "I will come again."

Who can conceive all the surpassing blessedness connected with that advent? The Elder Brother arrived to fetch the younger brethren home!—the true Joseph revealing Himself in unutterable tenderness to the brethren who were once estranged from Him—"receiving them unto himself"—not satisfied with apportioning a kingdom for them, but, as if all His own joy and bliss were intermingled with theirs, "Where I am," says He, "there you must be also." "He who overcomes, will I grant to sit with Me on My Throne."

Believer, can you now say with some of the holy transport of the apostle, "Whom having not seen, we love"? What must it be when you come to see Him "face to face," and that forever and ever! If you can tell of precious hours of communion in a sin-stricken, woe-worn world, with a treacherous heart, and an imperfect or divided love, what must it be when you come, in a sinless, sorrowless state, with purified and renewed affections, to see the King in His beauty! The letter of an absent brother cheering and consolatory as it is, is a poor compensation for the joys of personal and visible communion. The absent Elder Brother on the Throne speaks to you now only by His Word and Spirit—soon you shall be admitted to His immediate fellowship, seeing him "as He is"—He Himself unfolding the wondrous chart of His providence and grace—leading you about from fountain to fountain among the living waters, and with His own gentle hand wiping the last lingering tear-drop from your eye. Heaven an everlasting home with Jesus! "Where I am, there you may be also."—He has appended a cheering postscript to this word, on which He has "caused us to hope"—
"He which testifies these things says, surely I come quickly."
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« Reply #33 on: January 07, 2007, 02:33:14 PM »

The Closing Benediction

"Blessed are those servants whom the Lord when He comes shall find watching." —Luke 12:37

Church of God! is this your attitude, as the expectant of your Lord's appearing? Are your loins girded, and your lights burning? If the cry were to break upon your ears this day, "Behold the Bridegroom comes," could you joyfully respond—"Lo, this is my God, I have waited for him"? WHEN He may come, we cannot tell—ages may elapse before then. It may be centuries before our graves are gilded with the beams of a Millennial sun; but while He may or may not come soon, He must come at some time—yes, and the day of our death is virtually to all of us, the day of His coming.

Reader! do not put off the solemn preparation. Do not be deceived or deluded with the mocker's presumptuous challenge, "Where is the promise of His coming?" See to it that the calls of an engrossing world does not foster this procrastinating spirit. It may be now or never with you. Do not put off your sowing time until harvest time. Leave nothing for a dying hour, but to die, and calmly to resign your spirit into the hands of Jesus. Of all times, that is the least suitable to attempt to get the vessel filled—to attend to the great business of life when life is ebbing—to trim the lamp when the oil is done and it is flickering in its socket—to begin to watch, when the summons is heard to leave the watchtower to meet our God!

Were you never struck how often, amid the many gentle words of Jesus, the summons "to watch," is over and over repeated, like a succession of alarm-bells breaking ever and anon, amid chimes of heavenly music, to rouse a sleeping Church and a slumbering world?

Let this last "Word" of your Lord's send you to your knees with the question—"Am I indeed a servant of Christ?" Have I fled to Him, and am I reposing in Him, as my only Savior?—or am I still lingering like Lot, when I should be escaping?—sleeping, when I should be waking?—neglecting and trifling, when "a long eternity is lying at my door?" He is my last and only refuge; neglect Him—all is lost!

Believer! you who are standing on your watchtower, be more faithful than ever at your post. Remember what is implied in watching. It is no dreamy state of inactive torpor: it is a holy jealousy over the heart—wakeful vigilance regarding sin—every avenue and loophole of the soul carefully guarded. Holy living is the best, the only, preparative for holy dying. "Persuade yourself," says Rutherford, "the King is coming. Read His letter sent before Him, 'Behold I come quickly;' wait with the wearied night-watch for the breaking of the Eastern sky."

Let these "Words of Jesus" we have now been meditating upon in this little volume, be as the Golden Bells of old, hung on the vestments of the officiating High Priest, emitting sweet sounds to His spiritual Israel—telling that the true High Priest is still living and pleading in "the Holiest of all;" and that soon He will come forth to pour His blessing on His waiting Church. We have been pleasingly employed in gathering, up a few "crumbs" falling, from "the Master's table." Soon we shall have, not the "Words" but the presence of Jesus—not the crumbs falling from His table, but everlasting fellowship with the Master Himself!

"Amen, even so, come, Lord Jesus."
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« Reply #34 on: January 07, 2007, 02:49:23 PM »

Gal 1:8  But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:9  As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

Gal 2:16  Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

Gal 3:23  But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.
Gal 3:24  Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.
Gal 3:25  But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.
Gal 3:26  For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.


Rom 3:19  Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
Rom 3:20  Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
Rom 3:21  But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;
Rom 3:22  Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
Rom 3:23  For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
Rom 3:24  Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
Rom 3:25  Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
Rom 3:26  To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
Rom 3:27  Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.
Rom 3:28  Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.
Rom 3:29  Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also:
Rom 3:30  Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith.
Rom 3:31  Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.

Rom 4:4  Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.
Rom 4:5  But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.

Rom 10:4  For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

Rom 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Rom 10:10  For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
Rom 10:11  For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
Rom 10:12  For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
Rom 10:13  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

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« Reply #35 on: January 07, 2007, 03:52:20 PM »

PARDONING GRACE

"Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool." —Isaiah 1:18

My soul! your God summons you to His audience chamber! Infinite purity seeks to reason with infinite vileness! Deity stoops to speak to dust! Dread not the meeting. It is the most gracious, as well as most wondrous of all conferences. Jehovah himself breaks silence! He utters the best tidings a lost soul or a lost world can hear—"God is in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing unto men their trespasses." What! Scarlet sins, and crimson sins! and these all to be forgiven and forgotten! The just God "justifying" the unjust!—the mightiest of all beings, the kindest of all!

Oh! what is there in you to merit such love as this? You might have known your God only as the "consuming fire," and had nothing before you except "a fearful looking for of vengeance!" This gracious conference bids you dispel your fears! It tells you it is no longer a "fearful," but a blessed thing to fall into His hands! Have you closed with these His overtures? Until you are at peace with Him, happiness must be a stranger to your bosom. Though you have all else beside, bereft of God you must be "bereft indeed." Lord! I come! As your pardoning grace is freely tendered, so shall I freely accept it. May it be mine, even now, to listen to the gladdening accents, "Son! Daughter! be of good cheer! your sins, which are many are all forgiven you."
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« Reply #36 on: January 07, 2007, 03:52:47 PM »

NEEDFUL GRACE

"As your days, so shall your strength be." —Deuteronomy 33:25

God does not give grace until the hour of trial comes. But when it does come the amount of grace, and the nature of the special grace required is granted. My soul! do not dwell with painful apprehension on the future. Do not anticipate coming sorrows; perplexing yourself with the grace needed for future emergencies; tomorrow will bring its promised grace along with tomorrow's trials. God, wishing to keep His people humble, and dependent on Himself, gives not a stock of grace; He metes it out for every day's exigencies, that they may be constantly "traveling between their own emptiness and Christ's fullness"—their own weakness and Christ's strength. But when the exigency comes, you may safely trust an Almighty arm to bear you through! Is there now some "thorn in the flesh" sent to lacerate you? You may have been entreating the Lord for its removal. Your prayer has, doubtless, been heard and answered; but not in the way, perhaps, expected or desired by you. The "thorn" may still be left to goad, the trial may still be left to buffet; but "more grace" has been given to endure them. Oh! how often have His people thus been led to glory in their infirmities and triumph in their afflictions, seeing the power of Christ rests more abundantly upon them! The strength which the hour of trial brings, often makes the Christian a wonder to himself!
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« Reply #37 on: January 07, 2007, 03:53:19 PM »

ALL-SUFFICIENT GRACE

"God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that you, always having all-sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good word and work." —2 Corinthians 9:8

All-sufficiency in all things! Believer! Surely you are "thoroughly furnished!" Grace is no scanty thing, doled out in pittances. It is a glorious treasury, which the key of prayer can always unlock, but never empty. A fountain, "full, flowing, ever flowing, over flowing." Mark these three ALL’S in this precious promise. It is a three-fold link in a golden chain, let down from a throne of grace by a God of grace. "All grace!"—"all-sufficiency!" in "all things!" and these to "abound." Oh! precious thought! My need cannot impoverish that inexhaustible treasury of grace! Myriads are hourly hanging on it, and drawing from it, and yet there is no diminution—"Out of that fullness all we too may receive, and grace for grace!"

My soul, do you not love to dwell on that all-abounding grace? Your own insufficiency in everything, met with an "all-sufficiency in all things!" Grace in all circumstances and situations, in all vicissitudes and changes, in all the varied phases of the Christian's being. Grace in sunshine and storm—in health and in sickness—in life and in death. Grace for the old believer and the young believer, the tried believer, and the weak believer, and the tempted believer. Grace for duty, and grace in duty—grace to carry the joyous cup with a steady hand, grace to drink the bitter cup with an unmurmuring spirit—grace to have prosperity sanctified—grace to say, through tears, "Your will be done!"
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« Reply #38 on: January 07, 2007, 03:55:09 PM »

COMFORTING GRACE

"I will not leave you comfortless; I will come to you." —John 14:18

Blessed Jesus! How Your presence sanctifies trial, takes loneliness from the chamber of sickness, and the sting from the chamber of death! Bright and Morning Star! precious at all times, You are never so precious as in "the dark and cloudy day!" The bitterness of sorrow is well worth enduring to have Your promised consolations. How well qualified, Man of Sorrows, to be my Comforter! How well fitted to dry my tears, You who shed so many Yourself! What are my tears—my sorrows—my crosses—my losses, compared with Yours, who shed first Your tears, and then Your blood for me! Mine are all deserved, and infinitely more than deserved. How different, O Spotless Lamb of God, those pangs which rent Your guiltless bosom! How sweet those comforts You have promised to the comfortless, when I think of them as flowing from an Almighty Fellow-Sufferer—"A brother born for adversity"—the "Friend that sticks closer than any brother!"—one who can say, with all the refined sympathies of a holy exalted human nature, "I know your sorrows!" My soul! calm your griefs! There is not a sorrow you can experience, but Jesus, in the treasury of grace, has an exact corresponding solace: "In the multitude of the sorrows I have in my heart, Your comforts delight my soul!"
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« Reply #39 on: January 07, 2007, 03:55:40 PM »

RESTRAINING GRACE

"Satan has desired to have you, that he might sift you as wheat; but I have prayed for you, that your faith fail not." —Luke 22:31, 32

What a scene does this unfold! Satan tempting—Jesus praying! Satan sifting—Jesus pleading! "The strong man assailing"—"the stronger than the strong" beating him back! Believer! here is the past history and present secret of your safety in the midst of temptation. An interceding Savior was at your side, saying to every threatening wave, "Thus far shall you go, and no farther!" God often permits His people to be on the very verge of the precipice, to remind them of their own weakness; but never farther than the brink! The restraining hand and grace of Omnipotence is ready to rescue them—"Although he stumbles, yet he shall not be utterly cast down." And why? "For the Lord upholds him with His right hand!" The wolf may be prowling for his prey; but what can he do when the Shepherd is always there, tending with the watchful eye that "neither slumbers nor sleeps?" Who cannot subscribe to the testimony, "When my foot slipped, Your mercy, O Lord! held me up?" Who can look back on his past pilgrimage, and fail to see it crowded with Ebenezers, with this inscription: "You have delivered my soul from death, my eyes from tears, and my feet from falling"? My soul, where would you have been this day, had you not been "kept" by the power of God?
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« Reply #40 on: January 07, 2007, 03:56:13 PM »

RESTORING GRACE

"I will heal your backslidings." —Hosea 14:4

Wandering again! And has He not left me to perish? Stumbling and straying on the dark mountains, away from the Shepherd's eye and the Shepherd's fold, shall He not leave the erring wanderer to the fruit of his own ways, and his truant heart to go hopelessly onward in its career of guilty estrangement? "My thoughts," says God, "are not as your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways." Man would say, "Go, perish! ungrateful apostate!" God says, "Return, O backsliding children!" The Shepherd will not, cannot allow those sheep to perish which He has purchased with His own blood! How wondrous His forbearance towards it!—tracking its guilty steps, and ceasing not the pursuit until He lays the wanderer on His shoulders, and returns with it to His fold rejoicing! My soul! why increase by farther departures your own distance from the fold?—why lengthen the dreary road your gracious Shepherd has to traverse in bringing you back? Do not delay your return! Do not provoke His patience any longer! Do not venture farther on forbidden ground! He waits with outstretched arms to welcome you once more to His bosom. Be humble for the past, trust Him for the future. Think of your former backslidings, and tremble—think of His patience, and be filled with holy gratitude; think of His promised grace, "and take courage."
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« Reply #41 on: January 07, 2007, 03:56:48 PM »

SANCTIFYING GRACE

"I am sure that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on that day when Christ Jesus comes back again." —Philippians 1:6

Reader! Is the good work begun in you? Are you holy? Is sin being crucified? Are your heart's idols, one by one abolished? Is the world less to you, and eternity more to you? Is more of your Savior's image impressed on your character, and your Savior's love more enthroned in your heart? Is Salvation to you "the one thing needful?" Oh! take heed! there can be no middle ground, no standing still; or if it be so, your position must be a false one. The Savior's blood is not more necessary to give you a title to Heaven, than His Spirit to give you a fitness for it. "If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His!" Onwards! should be your motto. There is no standing still in the life of faith. "The man," says Augustine, "who says 'Enough,' that man's soul is lost!" Let this be the superscription in all your ways and doings, "Holiness to the Lord." Let the admonishing word exercise over you its habitual power, "Without holiness no man shall see the Lord." Moreover, remember, that to be holy, is to be happy. The two are equivalent terms. Holiness! It is the secret and spring of the joy of angels; and the more of holiness attained on earth—the nearer and closer my walk is with God—the more of a sweet earnest shall I have of the bliss that awaits me in a holy Heaven. Oh! my soul, let it be your sacred ambition to "Be holy!"
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« Reply #42 on: January 07, 2007, 03:57:21 PM »

REVIVING GRACE

"Those who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk, and not faint." —Isaiah 40:31

"Will You not revive us, O Lord?" My soul! are you conscious of your declining state? Is your walk less with God, your affections less heavenly? Have you less conscious nearness to the mercy-seat, diminished communion with your Savior? Is prayer less a privilege than it has been?—the pulsations of spiritual life more languid, and fitful, and spasmodic?—the bread of life, less relished?—the seen, and the temporal, and the tangible, displacing the unseen and eternal? Are you sinking down into this state of drowsy self-contentment, this conformity of your life with the world, forfeiting all the happiness of true religion and risking and endangering the better life to come? Arise! Call upon your God! "Will you not revive us, O Lord?" He might have returned nothing but the withering repulse, "How often would I have gathered you; but you would not!" "Ephraim is joined to his idols; let him alone!" But "in wrath He remembers mercy." "They shall revive as the corn." "The mouth of the Lord has spoken it." How and where is reviving grace to be found? He gives you, in this precious promise, the key. It is on your bended knees—by a return to your deserted and unfrequented chamber! "Those who wait upon the Lord!" "Wait on the Lord; be of good cheer, and He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the Lord!"
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Joh 9:4  I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.
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« Reply #43 on: January 07, 2007, 03:58:01 PM »

PERSEVERING GRACE

"The righteous shall hold on his way." —Job 17:9

Reader! How comforting to you amid the ebbings and flowings of your changing history, to know that the change is all with you, and not with your God! Your spiritual vessel may be tossed on waves of temptation, in many a dark midnight. You may think your pilot has left you, and be ready continually to say, "Where is my God?" But fear not! The ship which bears your spiritual destiny is in better hands than yours; a golden chain of covenant love links it to the eternal throne! That chain can never snap asunder. He who holds it in His hand gives you this as the pledge of your safety—"Because I live, you shall live also." "Why are you then cast down, O my soul? and why are you disquieted within me? hope in God!" You will assuredly ride out these stormy surges, and reach the desired haven. But be faithful with yourself: see that there be nothing to hinder or impede your growth in grace. Think how little may retard your progress. One sin indulged—one temptation tampered with—one bosom traitor, may cost you many a bitter hour and bitter tear, by separating between you and your God. Make it your daily prayer, "Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me and know my thoughts: and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."
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« Reply #44 on: January 08, 2007, 12:48:10 PM »

DYING GRACE

"I have the keys of hell and of death." —Revelation 1:18

And from whom could dying grace come so welcome, as from You, O blessed Jesus? Not only is Your name, "The Abolisher of Death;" but You Yourself have died! You have sanctified the grave by Your own presence, and divested it of all its terrors. My soul! are you at times afraid of this, your last enemy? If the rest of your pilgrimage-way be peaceful and unclouded, does there rest a dark and portentous shadow over the terminating portals? Fear not! When that dismal entrance is reached, He who has the keys of the grave and of death suspended at His golden belt, will impart grace to bear you through.

Death is but the messenger of peace. Your Savior calls you! The promptings of nature, when, at first, you see the darkening waves, may be that of the frightened disciples, when they said, "It is a ghost, and cried out for fear!" But a gentle voice will be heard high above the storm, "It is I! Do not be afraid!" Death, indeed, as the wages of sin, must, even by the believer, be regarded as an enemy. But, oh! blessed thought, it is your last enemy—the cause of your last tear. In a few brief moments after that tear is shed, your God will be wiping every vestige of it away! "O Death! where is your sting? O Grave! where is your victory? Thanks be unto God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!" Welcome, vanquished foe!—Birthday of heaven!—"To die is gain!"
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Joh 9:4  I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.
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