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nChrist
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« Reply #30 on: February 10, 2006, 11:38:46 AM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                     Friday February 10, 2006
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A Constant Witness

For thou shalt be his witness unto all men of what thou hast seen and heard. (Acts 22:15)

Paul was chosen to see and hear the Lord speaking to him out of heaven. This divine election was a high privilege for himself; but it was not intended to end with him; it was meant to have an influence upon others, yea, upon all men. It is to Paul that Europe owes the gospel at this hour.

It is ours in our measure to be witnesses of that which the Lord has revealed to us, and it is at our peril that we hide the precious revelation. First, we must see and hear, or we shall have nothing to tell; but when we have done so, we must be eager to bear our testimony. It must be personal: "Thou shalt be." It must be for Christ: "Thou shalt be his witness." It must be constant and all absorbing; we are to be this above all other things and to the exclusion of many other matters. Our witness must not be to a select few who will cheerfully receive us but to "all men"--to all whom we can reach, young or old, rich or poor, good or bad. We must never be silent like those who are possessed by a dumb spirit; for the text before us is a command, and a promise, and we must not miss it--"Thou shalt be his witness." "Ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord."

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« Reply #31 on: February 11, 2006, 04:43:57 AM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                    Saturday February 11, 2006
        http://bible.christiansunite.com/devotionals.shtml
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Are the Children In?

I will pour my spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring. (Isaiah 44:3)

Our dear children have not the Spirit of God by nature, as we plainly see. We see much in them which makes us fear as to their future, and this drives us to agonizing prayer. When a son becomes specially perverse, we cry with Abraham, "Oh, that Ishmael might live before thee!" We would sooner see our daughters Hannahs than empresses. This verse should greatly encourage us. It follows upon the words, "Fear not, O Jacob, my servant," and it may well banish our fears.

The Lord will give His Spirit; will give it plentifully, pouring it out; will give it effectually, so that it shall be a real and eternal blessing. Under this divine outpouring our children shall come forward, and "one shall say, I am the Lord's; and another shall call himself by the name of Jacob."

This is one of those promises concerning which the Lord will be inquired of. Should we not, at set times, in a distinct manner, pray for our offspring? We cannot give them new hearts, but the Holy Spirit can; and He is easily to be entreated of. The great Father takes pleasure in the prayers of fathers and mothers. Have we any dear ones outside of the ark? Let us not rest till they are shut in with us by the Lord's own hand.

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« Reply #32 on: February 12, 2006, 05:52:16 AM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                     Sunday February 12, 2006
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God Delights to Give

And the Lord said unto Abraham, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward, for all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. (Genesis 13:14-15)

A special blessing for a memorable occasion. Abram had settled a family dispute. He had said, "Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between thee and me, for we be brethren"; and hence he received the blessing which belongs to peacemakers. The Lord and giver of peace delights to manifest His grace to those who seek peace and pursue it. If we desire closer communion with God, we must keep closer to the ways of peace.

Abram had behaved very generously to his kinsman, giving him his choice of the land. If we deny ourselves for peace's sake, the Lord will more than make it up to us. As far as the patriarch can see, he can claim, and we may do the like by faith. Abram had to wait for the actual possession, but the Lord entailed the land upon him and his posterity. Boundless blessings belong to us by covenant gift. All things are ours. When we please the Lord, He makes us to look everywhere and see all things our own, whether things present or things to come, all are ours, and we are Christ's, and Christ is God's.

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« Reply #33 on: February 13, 2006, 05:17:41 AM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                     Monday February 13, 2006
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Blessed in the Field

Blessed shalt thou be in the field. (Deuteronomy 28:3)

So was Isaac blessed when he walked therein at eventide to meditate. How often has the Lord met us when we have been alone! The hedges and the trees can bear witness to our joy. We look for such blessedness again.

So was Boaz blessed when he reaped his harvest, and his workmen met him with benedictions. May the Lord prosper all who drive the plow! Every farmer may urge this promise with God, if indeed he obeys the voice of the Lord God.

We go to the field to labor as father Adam did; and since the curse fell on the soil through the sin of Adam the first, it is a great comfort to find a blessing through Adam the second,

We go to the field for exercise, and we are happy in the belief that the Lord will bless that exercise and give us health, which we will use to His glory.

We go to the field to study nature, and there is nothing in a knowledge of the visible creation which may not be sanctified to the highest uses by the divine benediction.

We have at last to go to the field to bury our dead; yea, others will in their turn take us to God's acre in the field. But we are blessed, whether weeping at the tomb or sleeping in it.

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« Reply #34 on: February 17, 2006, 06:34:16 AM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                     Tuesday February 14, 2006
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Mercy to the Undeserving

He that trusteth m the Lord, mercy shall compass him about. (Psalm 32:10)

O fair reward of trust! My Lord, grant it me to the full! The truster above all men feels himself to be a sinner; and lo, mercy is prepared for him: he knows himself to have no deservings, but mercy comes in and keeps house for him on a liberal scale. O Lord, give me this mercy, even as I trust in Thee!

Observe, my soul, what a bodyguard thou hast! As a prince is compassed about with soldiery, so art thou compassed about with mercy. Before and behind, and on all sides, ride these mounted guards of grace. We dwell in the center of the system of mercy, for we dwell in Christ Jesus.

O my soul, what an atmosphere dost thou breathe! As the air surrounds thee, even so does the mercy of thy Lord. To the wicked there are many sorrows, but to thee there are so many mercies that thy sorrows are not worth mentioning. David says, "Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, ye righteous; and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart." In obedience to this precept my heart shall triumph in God, and I will tell out my gladness. As Thou hast compassed me with mercy, I will also compass Thine altars, O my God, with songs of thanksgiving!

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« Reply #35 on: February 17, 2006, 06:36:13 AM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                    Wednesday February 15, 2006
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Ever Mindful

The Lord hath been mindful of us: he will bless us. (Psalm 115:12)

I can set my seal to that first sentence. Cannot you? Yes, Jehovah has thought of us, provided for us, comforted us, delivered us, and guided us. In all the movements of His providence He has been mindful of us, never overlooking our mean affairs. His mind has been full of us--that is the other form of the word mindfull. This has been the case all along and without a single break. At special times, however, we have more distinctly seen this mindfulness, and we would recall them at this hour with overflowing gratitude. Yes, yes, "the Lord hath been mindful of us."

The next sentence is a logical inference from the former one. Since God is unchangeable, He will continue to be mindful of us in the future as He has been in the past; and His mindfulness is tantamount to blessing us. But we have here not only the conclusion of reason but the declaration of inspiration; we have it on the Holy Ghost's authority--"He will bless us." This means great things and unsearchable. The very indistinctness of the promise indicates its infinite reach. He will bless us after His own divine manner, and that forever and ever, Therefore, let us each say, "Bless the Lord, O my soul!"

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« Reply #36 on: February 17, 2006, 06:38:14 AM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                    Thursday February 16, 2006
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You Deal with God

I will not execute the fierceness of mine anger, I will not return to destroy Ephraim: for I am God, and not man. (Hosea 11:9)

The Lord thus makes known His sparing mercies. It may be that the reader is now under heavy displeasure, and everything threatens his speedy doom. Let the text hold him up from despair. The Lord now invites you to consider your ways and confess your sins. ff He had been man, He would long ago have cut you off. If He were now to act after the manner of men, it would be a word and a blow and then there would be an end of you: but it is not so, for "as high as the heavens are above the earth, so high are his ways above your ways."

You rightly judge that He is angry, but He keepeth not His anger forever: if you turn from sin to Jesus, God will turn from wrath. Because God is God, and not man, there is still forgiveness for you, even though you may be steeped up to your throat in iniquity. You have a God to deal with and not a hard man, or even a merely just man. No human being could have patience with you. You would have wearied out an angel, as you have wearied your sorrowing Father; but God is longsuffering. Come and try Him at once. Confess, believe, and turn from your evil way, and you shall be saved.

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« Reply #37 on: February 17, 2006, 06:40:11 AM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                     Friday February 17, 2006
        http://bible.christiansunite.com/devotionals.shtml
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God Can Make You Strong

Be ye strong therefore, and let not your hands be weak: for your work shall be rewarded. (2 Chronicles 15:7)

God had done great things for King Asa and Judah, but yet they were a feeble folk. Their feet were very tottering in the ways of the Lord, and their hearts very hesitating, so that they had to be warned that the Lord would be with them while they were with Him, but that if they forsook Him He would leave them. They were also reminded of the sister kingdom, how ill it fared in its rebellion and how the Lord was gracious to it when repentance was shown. The Lord's design was to confirm them in His way and make them strong in righteousness. So ought it to be with us. God deserves to be served with all the energy of which we are capable.

If the service of God is worth anything, it is worth everything. We shall find our best reward in the Lord's work if we do it with determined diligence. Our labor is not in vain in the Lord, and we know it. Halfhearted work will bring no reward; but when we throw our whole soul into the cause, we shall see prosperity. This text was sent to the author of these notes in a day of terrible storm, and it suggested to him to put on all steam, with the assurance of reaching port in safety with a glorious freight.

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« Reply #38 on: February 18, 2006, 09:20:44 PM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                    Saturday February 18, 2006
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God Will Answer

He quill fulfill the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them. (Psalm 145:19)

His own Spirit has wrought this desire in us, and therefore He will answer it. It is His own life within which prompts the cry, and therefore He will hear it. Those who fear Him are men under the holiest influence, and, therefore, their desire is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. Like Daniel, they are men of desires, and the Lord will cause them to realize their aspirations.

Holy desires are grace in the blade, and the heavenly Husbandman will cultivate them till they come to the full corn in the ear. God-fearing men desire to be holy, to be useful, to be a blessing to others, and so to honor their Lord. They desire supplies for their need, help under burdens, guidance in perplexity, deliverance in distress; and sometimes this desire is so strong and their case so pressing that they cry out in agony like little children in pain, and then the Lord works most comprehensively and does all that is needful according to this Word--"and will save them."

Yes, if we fear God, we have nothing else to fear; if we cry to the Lord, our salvation is certain.

Let the reader lay this text on his tongue and keep it in his mouth all the day, and it will be to him as "a wafer made with honey."

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« Reply #39 on: February 19, 2006, 04:12:07 PM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                     Sunday February 19, 2006
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Better Farther On

Though I have afflicted thee, I will afflict thee no more. (Nahum 1:12)

There is a limit to affliction. God sends it, and God removes it. Do you sigh and say, "When will the end be?" Remember that our griefs will surely and finally end when this poor earthly life is over, Let us quietly wait and patiently endure the will of the Lord till He cometh.

Meanwhile, our Father in heaven takes away the rod when His design in using it is fully served. When He has whipped away our folly, there will be no more strokes. Or, if the affliction is sent for testing us, that our graces may glorify God, it will end when the Lord has made us bear witness to His praise. We would not wish the affliction to depart till God has gotten out of us all the honor which we can possibly yield Him.

There may today be "a great calm." Who knows how soon those raging billows will give place to a sea of glass, and the sea birds sit on the gentle waves? After long tribulation the Rail is hung up, and the wheat rests in the garner. We may, before many hours are past, be just as happy as now we are sorrowful. It is not hard for the Lord to turn night into day. He that sends the clouds can as easily clear the skies. Let us be of good cheer. It is better on before. Let us sing hallelujah by anticipation.

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« Reply #40 on: February 20, 2006, 03:58:08 PM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                     Monday February 20, 2006
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=======================================

Continual Guidance

The Lord shall guide thee continually. (Isaiah 58:11)

What aileth thee? Hast thou lost thy way? Art thou entangled in a dark wood and canst thou not find thy paths? Stand still, and see the salvation of God. He knows the way, and He will direct thee in it if thou cry unto Him.

Every day brings its own perplexity. How sweet to feel that the guidance of the Lord is continual! If we choose our own way or consult with flesh and blood we cast ok the Lord's guidance; but if we abstain from self-will, then He will direct every step of our road, every hour of the day, and every day of the year, and every year of our life. If we will but be guided, we shall be guided. If we will commit our way unto the Lord, He will direct our course so that we shall not lose ourselves.

But note to whom this promise is made. Read the previous verse: "If thou draw out thy soul to the hungry." We must feel for others and give them, not a few dry crusts, but such things as we ourselves would wish to receive. If we show a tender care for our fellow-creatures in the hour of their need, then will the Lord attend to our necessities and make Himself our continual Guide. Jesus is the Leader, not of misers, nor of those who oppress the poor, but of the kind and tenderhearted. Such persons are pilgrims who shall never miss their way.

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« Reply #41 on: February 23, 2006, 04:04:49 AM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                     Tuesday February 21, 2006
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======================================

Blessing on Littleness

He will bless them that fear the Lord, both small and great. (Psalm 115:13)

This is a word of cheer to those who are of humble station and mean estate. Our God has a very gracious consideration for those of small property, small talent, small influence, small weight. God careth for the small things in creation and even regards sparrows in their lighting upon the ground. Nothing is small to God, for He makes use of insignificant agents for the accomplishment of His purposes. Let the least among men seek of God a blessing upon his littleness, and he shall find his contracted sphere to be a happy one.

Among those who fear the Lord there are little and great. Some are babes, and others are giants. But these are all blessed. Little faith is blessed faith. Trembling hope is blessed hope. Every grace of the Holy Spirit, even though it be only in the bud, bears a blessing within it. Moreover, the Lord Jesus bought both the small and the great with the same precious blood, and He has engaged to preserve the lambs as well as the full-grown sheep. No mother overlooks her child because it is little; nay, the smaller it is, the more tenderly does she nurse it. If there be any preference with the Lord, He does not arrange them as "great and small" but as "small and great."

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« Reply #42 on: February 23, 2006, 04:06:56 AM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                    Wednesday February 22, 2006
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Past Deliverance Begets Faith

David said moreover, The Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. (1 Samuel 17:37)

This is not a promise if we consider only the words, but it is truly so as to its sense; for David spoke a word which the Lord endorsed by making it true. He argued from past deliverance's that he should receive help in a new danger. In Jesus all the promises are "Yea" and "Amen" to the glory of God by us, and so the Lord's former dealings with His believing people will be repeated.

Come, then, let us recall the Lord's former lovingkindness. We could not have hoped to be delivered aforetime by our own strength; yet the Lord delivered us. Will He not again save us? We are sure He will. As David ran to meet his foe, so will we. The Lord has been with us, He is with us, and He has said, "I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee," Why do we tremble? Was the past a dream? Think of the dead bear and lion. Who is this Philistine? True, he is not quite the same, and is neither bear nor lion; but then God is the same, and His honor is as much concerned in the one case as in the other. He did not save us from the beasts of the forest to let a giant kill us. Let us be of good courage.

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« Reply #43 on: February 24, 2006, 02:30:27 PM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                    Thursday February 23, 2006
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=====================================

Unbroken Fellowship Essential

lf ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. (John 15:7)

Of necessity we must be in Christ to live unto Him, and we must abide in Him to be able to claim the largesse of this promise from Him. To abide in Jesus is never to quit Him for another love or another object, but to remain in living, loving, conscious, willing union with Him. The branch is not only ever near the stem but ever receiving life and fruitfulness from it. All true believers abide in Christ in a sense; but there is a higher meaning, and this we must know before we can gain unlimited power at the throne. "Ask what ye will" is for Enochs who walk with God, for Johns who lie in the Lord's bosom, for those whose union with Christ leads to constant communion.

The heart must remain in love, the mind must be rooted in faith, the hope must be cemented to the Word, the whole man must be joined unto the Lord, or else it would be dangerous to trust us with power in prayer. The carte blanche can only be given to one whose very life is, "Not I, but Christ liveth in me." O you who break your fellowship, what power you lose! If you would be mighty in your pleadings, the Lord Himself must abide in you, and you in Him.

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« Reply #44 on: February 24, 2006, 02:32:25 PM »

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                Faith's Checkbook by C.H. Spurgeon
                     Friday February 24, 2006
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Hear So as to Be Heard

If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. (John 15:7)

Note well that we must hear Jesus speak if we expect Him to hear us speak. If we have no ear for Christ, He will have no ear for us. In proportion as we hear we shall be heard.

Moreover, what is heard must remain, must live in us, and must abide in our character as a force and a power. We must receive the truths which Jesus taught, the precepts which He issued, and the movements of His Spirit within us; or we shall have no power at the Mercy Seat.

Suppose our Lord's words to be received and to abide in us, what a boundless field of privilege is opened up to us! We are to have our will in prayer, because we have already surrendered our will to the Lord's command. Thus are Elijahs trained to handle the keys of heaven and lock or loose the clouds. One such man is worth a thousand common Christians. Do we humbly desire to be intercessors for the church and the world, and like Luther to be able to have what we will of the Lord? Then we must bow our ear to the voice of the Well-beloved, treasure up His words, and carefully obey them. He has need to "hearken diligently" who would pray effectually.

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