Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving;Colossians 4:2(NASB)
I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to pre-sent your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.—Just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification.—Neither circumcision counts for anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. And as for all who walk by this rule, peace and mercy be upon them.
“By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples.”—“I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.”
I urge you... to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. (Romans 12:1 NIV)
You have a life, and that life is a great trust, a great responsibility. It can stay in its own ambitions, its own interests, its own worldly concerns and considerations, it can stay by itself. Will you give your life to God, will you let it go to God, will you put it on the altar and let the knife be taken that God may have it utterly? If you will, God will multiply your life, God will extend your life, God will make much more of it than ever it would have been if you had kept it in your own hands. Have you got something in your life that you are holding on to as a Christian; you are not letting that go to the Lord? You know what it is. I should miss it if I tried to catalog the things it might be. You know you have something where you are not letting go to the Lord. The Lord has put His finger on something, and you are holding on. You have an argument which you think is a very good argument. You have a reason you think perfectly good, so you are holding on. Deep down the truth is you are not prepared to let that go....
There are times when, in recognition that a certain course is the Lord’s way, we have to wait for the Lord’s time and see to it that our strength of will coming into alliance with some purpose of God is not jeopardizing the fruitfulness of that thing, and doing other people harm and making other people suffer. There are times when we have to come back to the Lord and say, "Lord, You have shown me that is Your way for me, but I can see that it is going to involve others in a great deal of suffering. I do want to be sure of Your time in this, and that I am not taking hold of it; it is not my strength of will to do Your will. I want to do this thing in self-sacrificing love, so that the least loss shall be suffered by others." We have seen people who are right as to their objective, right as to what the Lord wants, but the way in which they do it often spoils the whole thing. They take hold of Divine things, and while the thing is right, they are spoiling it by bringing their own strength of will into alliance with it. This applies in many ways. We must be circumcised in heart to do the will of God, ready to let go and let God determine the way to accomplish it. May the Lord interpret His Word and make it fruitful. I know it is challenging. It searches us all; we shall all come up against it. But oh, see what happened in heaven, and see that He desires that as it is in heaven, so it shall be on earth.=
Return to the Lord your God, for you have stumbled because of your iniquity; take words with you, and return to the Lord. Say to Him, “Take away all iniquity; receive us graciously.”
Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God.” … But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed … Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.
Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the Lord! § It is good that one should hope and wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord. § Shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them?
Truly my soul silently waits for God; from Him comes my salvation … My soul, wait silently for God alone, for my expectation is from Him.
Ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you" (c).
The purpose of doctrine is to produce the personification of truth. "The sublimest truths are still needed to enforce the simplest responsibilities. As the laws which mould the stars and move the gigantic orbs of Saturn and Uranus in their tremendous circuits, shape the dewdrop that glistens at the end of a blade of grass, so should everything in the Christian's life be regulated by the principles which lie in the Person and Cross of the Lord Jesus Christ. To isolate Christian morality from Christian theology is to rend asunder the teachings of the New Testament, as to its deepest and most vital elements." -W.G.S.
"The knowledge of doctrine, essential as it is, gives no power. One might be very well up on the doctrine of deliverance, and know absolutely nothing of its practical reality. It is as our hearts are under the sway of that grace which is ministered to us through the Lord Jesus Christ, and as we are knit to Him in affection, that we touch and taste a new life, and are severed in heart from all that constituted the life of our old man. Thus the body of sin is annulled for our hearts, and we do not henceforth serve sin." -C.A.C.
"In the New Testament literature of the Church, creed and conduct are always related. Doctrine and practice, theology and morality, knowledge and action are inseparably connected, being related to one another as foundation to superstructure, as center to circumference, as cause to effect. Some expound without applying, and some endeavor to apply what has not been expounded, but the Apostles always do both. When revealed truth is divorced from Christian living it becomes an impotent abstraction." -W.G.S.
"Being, then, made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness" (Rom. 6:18).
“Fellow Labourer in the Gospel of Christ.” 1 Thessalonians 3:2
After sanctification it is difficult to state what your aim in life is, because God has taken you up into His purpose by the Holy Ghost; He is using you now for His purposes throughout the world as He used His Son for the purpose of our salvation. If you seek great things for yourself - God has called me for this and that; you are putting a barrier to God's use of you. As long as you have a personal interest in your own character, or any set ambition, you cannot get through into identification with God's interests. You can only get there by losing for ever any idea of yourself and by letting God take you right out into His purpose for the world, and because your goings are of the Lord, you can never understand your ways.
I have to learn that the aim in life is God's, not mine. God is using me from His great personal standpoint, and all He asks of me is that I trust Him, and never say - Lord, this gives me such heart-ache. To talk in that way makes me a clog. When I stop telling God what I want, He can catch me up for what He wants without let or hindrance. He can crumple me up or exalt me, He can do any thing He chooses. He simply asks me to have implicit faith in Himself and in His goodness. Self pity is of the devil, if I go off on that line I cannot be used by God for His purpose in the world. I have "a world within the world" in which I live, and God will never be able to get me outside it because I am afraid of being frost-bitten.
And when you hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout with a great shout; and the wall of the city shall fall down flat, and the people shall ascend up every man straight before him.
The shout of steadfast faith is in direct contrast to the moans of wavering faith. I do not know of anything that is more valuable than the secret of this shout of faith.
The Lord said to Joshua: see, I have given into thine hand Jericho, and the king thereof, and the mighty men of valour.” Joshua 6:2
The Lord did not say to Joshua, “I will give,” but “I have given.” Before the battle had already been fought the Lord had already given them the city, The city already belonged to them; and they were simply called to take possession.
But the great question was, HOW? How were they to take the city? It looked impossible, but the Lord had declared His plan, to Joshua: when you hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout with a great shout; and the walls of the city shall fall down flat.
Now, no one can suppose for a moment that this loud shout caused the walls to fall. The vibration from their combined voices was insufficient to cause 1 stone to tumble, and yet the secret of their victory lay in their shout – for it was the shout of faith. It was a shout of obedience to God’s instructions – and showed faith in God’s word.
The army of Israel raised their combined voices in obedience to God’s command: when you hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout; with a great shout, and the wall of the city shall fall down flat. They dared to shout, on the authority of God’s Word, to claim a promised victory.
The towering walls of this fortified city of Jericho must have appeared impregnable, but though there was no signread more
Called according to His purpose
Every one that is born from above is called according to the purpose of God. Every believer has a calling; an eternal calling – a great purpose in time and eternity, and God’s purpose is entwined and interlinked with Christ – Who is to be all in all. We are all part of the body of Christ and we all have our own particular part to play, but this mortal life and our eternal future are bound up in Christ, the beloved of God.
At first we were called out of darkness into His glorious light. We were called out from the bondage of sin and death into the freedom of God’s Son, and throughout this life we are witnesses to the amazing grace of God – and throughout this life we are being trained to carry out our part in God’s eternal plan.
Being born into God’s family is our first step along the road of our new life in Christ. Our sanctification process is our ongoing preparation for God’s eternal purpose in Him.. for each of us have been called according to His purpose:– that Christ is all in all – the infinite fullness of the Lord Jesus Christ is the wonderful purpose of God.
We do not know what our role in that purpose is now – but we all have a part to play, and if we humbly submit to His guiding hand He will fulfil His purpose in us. God is dealing with each of us in relation to His divine plans and His perfect purpose – and God ways are mysterious ways; veiled ways – ways beyond our comprehension.
Paul gave us a peep into the purpose to which we have been called in Colossians 3:- We have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge, after the image of its creator a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, butread more