Then falling on his knees, he cried out with a loud voice, "Lord, do not hold this sin against them!" Having said this, he fell asleep.Acts 7:60(NASB)
In Him we live and move and have our being. (Acts 17:28)
This whole Bible is about bringing man back to God, bringing him into God, and restoring him to his environment. "In Him we live and move and have our being" is the fundamental truth of the spiritual life. There is one thing I suggest to you, or hint at, which, if you grasp it, would be such a tremendous help to you. When the Lord says anything, it may look on the face of it something very simple and not at all profound and wonderful; but anything that comes from the Lord, though it be apparently very simple, contains all the vast knowledge and understanding that the Lord has, and not to take account of that 'simple' thing may bring you into a vast amount of trouble.
When the Lord Jesus says: "Abide in Me" it sounds so simple and so ordinary, but it contains all this history, and this great principle and truth: "If you get out of your environment you are exposed to all the poisons and all that creates spiritual disease. Abide in Me for your health's sake! For your life's sake! For the sake of everything! Abide in Me, and I in you!" Have you got that? You look again at any seemingly 'little' thing that the Lord says, and if you could see you would find that you have a universe of meaning in it.
I am the Lord your God, who has separated you from the peoples… You shall be holy to Me, for I the Lord am holy, and have separated you from the peoples, that you should be Mine.
Sanctified by God the Father. § Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth. § May the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus… that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate. § Our… Savior Jesus Christ … gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. § Both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of one, for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren. § For their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also may be sanctified by the truth. § In sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ.
Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy. He who continually goes forth weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.
What you sow, you do not sow that body that shall be.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. . . . In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
So then let us once for all quit the elementary teaching about Christ and continue progressing; toward maturity" (Heb. 6:1, Wms.).
When the standard of the Christian life is low, the responsibility for growth is placed upon the believer. But when it is known that God's standard for us is His Son, all expectation of maturity must be placed in Him - "for it is God which worketh in us both to will and to do of His good pleasure" (Phil. 2:13).
"The Lord Jesus Christ is the Christian's very life, and the Holy Spirit dwells within our spirit to manifest Him, to work out all that is in Him and to reproduce Him in us. We must remember that there is something in the sight of God that is higher than work. There is Christ-likeness. That is our Father's purpose, and it is His work." -A.M.
"It is not great talents God blesses so much as great likeness to the Lord Jesus. A holy ministry is an awful weapon in the hands of God." -R.M.Mc.
"In a great many evangelical churches the Gospel of salvation is magnificently presented, seekers are led to Christ; but the totality of the Gospel, the Gospel in its ultimate category, is by no means so clearly presented, nor maybe even understood by teacher as well as pupil. It is evidenced by exhortation to Christian living being mainly challenges to pray more, study more, give more, witness more, surrender more. The emphasis is predominantly on the active dedication of the Christian to his Lord, and to a much less degree on the dynamic remolding of the believer by his Lord."
"For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus" (Eph. 2:10).
“She hath wrought a good work on Me.” Mark 14:6
If human love does not carry a man beyond himself, it is not love. If love is always discreet, always wise, always sensible and calculating, never carried beyond itself, it is not love at all. It may be affection, it may be warmth of feeling, but it has not the true nature of love in it.
Have I ever been carried away to do something for God not because it was my duty, nor because it was useful, nor because there was anything in it at all beyond the fact that I love Him? Have I ever realized that I can bring to God things which are of value to Him, or am I mooning round the magnitude of His Redemption while there are any number of things I might be doing? Not Divine, colossal things which could be recorded as marvellous, but ordinary, simple human things which will give evidence to God that I am abandoned to Him? Have I ever produced in the heart of the Lord Jesus what Mary of Bethany produced?
There are times when it seems as if God watches to see if we will give Him the abandoned tokens of how genuinely we do love Him. Abandon to God is of more value than personal holiness. Personal holiness focuses the eye on our own whiteness; and we are greatly concerned about the way we walk and talk and look, fearful lest we offend Him. Perfect love casts out all that when once we are abandoned to God. We have to get rid of this notion - "Am I of any use?" and make up our minds that we are not, and we may be near the truth. It is never a question of being of use, but of being of value to God Himself. When we are abandoned to God, He works through us all the time.
Thou shalt comfort me on EVERY side.
We live in a world of trials, troubles, temptations, and tribulations. We have been born in a season of sin and sorrow, for we were born 'in Adam'. Some of life’s problems and pain result from our own self-imposed sins – from our own sins, shortcomings, foolishness, or neglect. Some result from the consequences of outside circumstances or the carelessness of others – but like as a father pities his own children, or a mother yearns for her offspring, so the Lord Himself has deep compassion on those that fear Him – and He supplies in all circumstances and situations, for He is our dear, heavenly Comforter.
To be comforted in my own self-imposed sins and stupidity, I must confess my fault. He has given us the formula in 1 John 1:9 and Hebrews 12:2. Confess all sins and shortcomings, and turn away from them, and look to Him. Once confessed – even the gravest of sins, in thought, word or deed, have been cleansed – and as far as east is from west – thus far has He removed our sins – forever. Psalm 103:12
Do you sometimes revisit those sins committed in the flush of youth? Do you bow your head in shame thinking that your sins were too grave to be forgiven? Do you strive, in your own way, to prove yourself to now be good enough? You foolish man – you silly woman, accept His forgiveness and be comforted. You pride yourself, that the depth of your faults exceeds the height of His grace. Your sins, like grains of sand, are washed in the vast ocean of His loving absolution.
Then there are those sorrows brought to bear from a myriad of external sources. Others, who have consciously or unconsciously grieved our heart to distraction… as day by day, we are bombarded with pain and distress BY others – as day by day we are bombarded with the pain and distress OF others. Injuriesread more
Hope does not disappoint
Blessed is the man …. whose hope is the LORD.
You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.
I am not ashamed, for I know Whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that day.
2 Timothy 1:12
There is much in life’s circumstances that gives the believer pain. There is much in the world in which he lives that causes him distress. The injustices of life; the sufferings of so many; the neglect of the truths of God; the rejection of the love of the Father; the compromise of the gift of Salvation; the venomous hatred of the Giver of Salvation; the ignorance of so many who have never heard His Word of Salvation. Yes, there is much in life’s circumstances that gives the believer pain. There is much in the world in which he lives that causes him distress.
But in the bleak darkness of this fallen world, shines the steady flame of hope. Hope that consoles the heart of the distressed believer; hope that brightens the steely skies; hope that uplifts the downcast spirit; hope that ministers to the wounded soul. Let there be hope today. Let your heart be glad: for blessed is the man whose hope is in the Lord. Jeremiah 7:17
But hope is not an optimistic outlook or positive thinking. And hope is not a vain desire, an empty wish, or self-induced feeling. Hope is the believer’s grace that is founded upon certain stable facts. Hope has its roots entwined in the truth of God’s holy Word. Hope has its foundation firmly set on the Rock of our Salvation.
Hope rests on the nature and name of almighty God. Hope stands on the promises and character of the Lord Most High. Hope believes in His fundamental goodness and eternal wisdom. Hope reflects back over His never-failingread more