I have set the LORD continually before me; Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.Psalm 16:8(NASB)
As for me, may I never boast about anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. Because of that cross, my interest in this world has been crucified, and the world's interest in me has also died. (Galatians 6:14 NLT)
A truly crucified people are never in danger of the world. It is only when the Cross has not done its work that the world has a place. The world has no place with a crucified man or woman, or a crucified company of believers. The Cross is a great defensive against the world. If you want to keep the world out, put the Cross in its place. If the Cross is truly in its place in fullness, then everything else will come into order. The Cross is the great defensive against the world. The Cross is the great defensive against evil powers. The Cross makes everything safe; it makes everything safe for the Lord.
You see, the Lord wants to commit Himself. He wants to trust Himself to His people, but if the Cross is not there at work, the Lord cannot trust Himself to them. The Lord says, "It is not safe for Me to give Myself there, or I should be involved in their un-crucified condition." The Cross makes everything safe for the Lord, and the Cross makes everything safe for the Church. If the Cross is really at work in all of us, we can trust one another. It is quite safe to trust yourself to a crucified man or woman.
For us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we for Him; and one Lord Jesus Christ. § All should honor the Son just as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him. § Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name. § Whoever offers praise glorifies Me; and to him who orders his conduct aright I will show the salvation of God.
I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” … Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom, thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be to our God forever and ever. Amen
Their Redeemer is strong; the Lord of hosts is His name. § I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death. O Death, I will be your plagues! O Grave, I will be your destruction!
Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.
He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.
For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. § When He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ" (Eph. 1:3)
Since the sovereign God has every atom in the universe precisely timed and controlled for the carrying out of His perfect will, it should not be difficult for us to understand why He is so meticulous in His development of us as His instruments. "Being predestinated according to the purpose of Him who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will (Eph. 1:11).
"You are one of God's rough diamonds, and He is going to have to cut you so that you may really shine for Him. It takes a diamond to cut a diamond. You are to be ground and cut, and hurt by other diamonds, by other Christians, by spiritual Christians. But the more cutting and the more perfecting, the more you are going to shine for your Lord." -G.M.
"God in His wisdom has ordained our trials, and it is our folly that causes us not to welcome them. God sends us such trials as are exactly fitted for us. Our Heavenly Father knows what will best serve us. He serves us by trials and by comforts. Let us remember that our trials are few - our evil ways are many; our worthiness nothing - our comforts great. When God tries us let us consider how we have been trying Him. By grace we will not murmur, but humble ourselves under His mighty hand, and He will exalt us in due time."
"Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you" (1 Pet. 4:12)
“They laid hold upon one Simon … and on him they laid the cross.” Luke 23:2
If we obey God it is going to cost other people more than it costs us, and that is where the sting comes in. If we are in love with our Lord, obedience does not cost us anything, it is a delight, but it costs those who do not love Him a good deal. If we obey God it will mean that other people's plans are upset, and they will gibe us with it - "You call this Christianity?" We can prevent the suffering; but if we are going to obey God, we must not prevent it, we must let the cost be paid.
Our human pride entrenches itself on this point, and we say - I will never accept anything from anyone. We shall have to, or disobey God. We have no right to expect to be in any other relationship than our Lord Himself was in (see Luke 8:2-3).
Stagnation in spiritual life comes when we say we will bear the whole thing ourselves. We cannot. We are so involved in the universal purposes of God that immediately we obey God, others are affected. Are we going to remain loyal in our obedience to God and go through the humiliation of refusing to be independent, or are we going to take the other line and say - I will not cost other people suffering? We can disobey God if we choose, and it will bring immediate relief to the situation, but we shall be a grief to our Lord. Whereas if we obey God, He will look after those who have been pressed into the consequences of our obedience. We have simply to obey and to leave all consequences with Him.
Beware of the inclination to dictate to God as to what you will allow to happen if you obey Him.
Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him. Very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun. And they said among themselves, who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre? And when they looked, they saw that the stone was rolled away, for it was very great.
Oh, what shining examples of loving devotional and devoted fidelity. Loving devotion and devoted fidelity was demonstrated by these grieving women. Last at the cross first at the tomb, and oh so very early in the morning: while it was still dark. Following a night of spice preparation and a dark journey in the misty morning, the grieving, loving hearts came to Him.. the one they loved so deeply,
Hope must have died in their breast as they saw His precious body bound in grave-clothes. Hearts must have bled as they watched Him laid in the tomb, but faithful love had not died. Anguish of heart was replaced by their caring ministry of devotion, in the very core of their beings, as they recalled the bountiful blessings, bestowed from His hand. Messianic expectation had been dashed to pieces in their torn and grieving souls but they were eager to do all, and anything, for this beloved One.
Oh believer, no matter how painful the hour and no matter how dark your path or how grim your circumstances, "Love Never Fails". Though expectations may fail of their realisation, and the blossom of hope may fall and die – still cling to Him, the Lover of your soul Remember, our deepest disappointments can often prove to be the richest of blessings in His sweet timing – only rest in His arms of love. Their perceived Messianic hopes were indeed buried, never to rise – for they were hopes, based on a wrong premise. But true hope in Christ the Lordread more
God has sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised.
Jesus gives beauty in exchange for our brokenness. He gives light in exchange for our thickest darkness. He gives hope in exchange for our deepest despair. He gives rest in ravaged hearts. He gives faith in our weary souls. His grace is sufficient. His mercy is everlasting. His truth is enduring. His love knows no boundaries.
When we are faithless, He is faithful. God desires to break our egos and our self-will –not our spirits. Indeed, in the spirit, we should grow stronger under affliction. God’s purpose is to strip us of every ounce of self-gratification;self-importance; self-assurance; self-seeking, self-will.
So that with Paul we can say.. "it is not I that lives but Christ lives in me. Not I –but Christ".