'But you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their garments; and they will walk with Me in white, for they are worthy.Revelation 3:4(NASB)
All glory to God, who is able, through His mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. (Ephesians 3:20 NLT)
Any power that can survive what we sometimes have to go through in the realms of our own souls is a very great power indeed; and, believe me, this power that works in the Church is going to survive all the accumulated sensations of all the members of the Body of Christ.
Now, bring all your misery together, bring all your despair together, all your sensations, all the helplessness of the outlook, and, if you are a child of God, there is a power that works within which is more than sufficient to meet and counter and triumph over all that. That is the means by which God reaches His end in us, and if His end in us is conformity to the image of His Son, then the power that worketh in us is more than enough to meet and overcome all that which is contrary to His Son in us. Do you believe that? Not always! If we really believed that in a thorough-going way we should never be found occupied with ourselves, we should never be depressed because of our imperfections, there would be no room for any question as to our standing. Oh, if we did but believe this, what triumphant people we should be; for is it not true that the greater proportion of our troubles, of our despair, of our unhappiness, is due to the consciousness of our own imperfection – all that we are that we would not be and should not be, and all that we are not that we feel we ought to be. His eternal purpose and His exceeding great power are linked together. Do not forget that. We are the object of both, and His exceeding great power is at work within us to effect the purpose.
No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him. § [Jesus is] the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person. § The god of this age has blinded [their minds], who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.
Make Your face shine upon Your servant; save me for Your mercies’ sake. Do not let me be ashamed, O Lord, for I have called upon You. § Lord, by Your favor You have made my mountain stand strong; You hid Your face, and I was troubled. § Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound! They walk, O Lord, in the light of Your countenance.
The Lord will give strength to His people; the Lord will bless His people with peace. Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.
Num. 6:25–26; John 1:18; Heb. 1:3; 2 Cor. 4:4; Ps. 31:16–17; 30:7; 89:15; 29:11; Matt. 14:27
Without faith it is impossible to please Him. § Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. § The Lord takes pleasure in His people. This is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully … But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God. § The … beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit … is very precious in the sight of God.
Whoever offers praise glorifies Me; and to him who orders his conduct aright I will show the salvation of God. § I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify Him with thanksgiving. This also shall please the Lord better than an ox or bull, which has horns and hooves.
I beseech you … brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.
1 John 3:22; Heb. 11:6; Rom. 8:8; Ps. 149:4; 1 Peter 2:19–20; 3:4; Ps. 50:23; 69:30–31; Rom. 12:1
For the death which He died He became, once for all, dead in relation to sin; but by the life which He now lives He is alive in relation to God" (Rom. 6:10, Wey.).
When we seek to suppress self in one area, it will express itself in another. If we attempt to prune the branches of the old life, we find that its root has thereby been strengthened. The one answer to this enemy, both God's and ours, is the daily crucifixion of the Cross.
"Romans Six is one of the most blessed portions of the New Testament, teaching us that our old man,' our old nature that is in us, was actually crucified with Him, so that now we need no longer be in bondage to sin. But remember it is only as the Holy Spirit makes Christ's death a reality within us, that we shall know, not by force of argument or conviction, but in the reality of the power of an endless life, that we are in very deed dead to sin." -A.M.
"Not by a stringent cutting off' of exterior things, nor by seeking a mental apprehension of death with Christ' in the conscious life, but by a simple reckoning upon His death as yours - shall you experience in the inner depths of your life, servant of God, the divine spiritual reality that Christ in you' is in truth your very life, displacing the old life of nature and continually making to die' its inclinations and habits"
"In the same way you also must regard yourselves as dead in relation to sin, but as alive in relation to God, because you are in Christ Jesus" (Rom. 6:11, Wey.).
“Then Peter began to say unto Him, Lo, we have left all, and have followed Thee… .” Mark 10:28
Our Lord replies in effect, that abandonment is for Himself, and not for what the disciples themselves will get from it. Beware of an abandonment which has the commercial spirit in it - "I am going to give myself to God because I want to be delivered from sin, because I want to be made holy." All that is the result of being right with God, but the spirit is not of the essential nature of Christianity. Abandonment is not for anything at all. We have got so commercialized that we only go to God for something from Him, and not for Himself. It is like saying, "No, Lord, I don't want You, I want myself; but I want myself clean and filled with the Holy Ghost; I want to be put in Your show room and be able to say - 'This is what God has done for me.'" If we only give up something to God because we want more back, there is nothing of the Holy Spirit in our abandonment; it is miserable commercial self-interest. That we gain heaven, that we are delivered from sin, that we are made useful to God - these things never enter as considerations into real abandonment, which is a personal sovereign preference for Jesus Christ Himself.
When we come up against the barriers of natural relationship, where is Jesus Christ? Most of us desert Him - "Yes, Lord, I did hear Your call; but my mother is in the road, my wife, my self-interest, and I can go no further." "Then," Jesus says, "you cannot be My disciple."
The test of abandonment is always over the neck of natural devotion. Go over it, and God's own abandonment will embrace all those you had to hurt in abandoning. Beware of stopping short of abandonment to God. Most of us know abandonment in vision only.
Hope is one of the abiding essentials in the plan of God –along with faith and love. How often we should remind ourselves that hope in Him should be preeminent – and yet how often I tend to become downcast, when things just seem to go wrong… when friends fail or misunderstand or when life’s problems just seem to multiply. Hope deferred makes the heart sick – sometimes to the point of failure and death. Hope lost is the saddest expressions of the human heart – often leading to despair. But when the hoped-for desire comes, it gladdens the soul, filling the heart with joy. Fulfilled hope warms the heart, delights the soul and makes the countenance shine.
J.C. Mackenzie puts it this way.. Hope is the anticipation, with the possibility of realisation. Hope is the chord which strikes pleasant desires for the future. Hope is everyone’s sunshine, the rainbow in the storm. Hope is the silver lining to the present cloud. Hope is a star set in the firmament of our lives to brighten and lighten – to show the way and encourage us along it. Hope differs in magnitude and brightness according to occasion. Hope is cordial for the desponding. Hope is a chain with many links.
But how God loves one that is cheerful and gracious, thankful and long-suffering. All gifts and graces He has generously bestowed to combat grief and grieving – each one a ray of sun or a drop of dew, for the one that is going through distresses. How precious are the many tiny pearls of hope – scattered through the Word of God. Precious promises and messages of hope, from the God and Giver of all hopefulness. How greatly they add to the courage and build up the strength of the one that is downcast. How markedly comforting are these jewels – shining through the pages of scripture.
How dearly must I hold fast to all such tokens of His love for me – especially duringread more
Reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin BUT reckon yourselves to be alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
In Romans 6:11 we read: Reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, while in Galatians 2:19-20: for I through the law died to the law that I might live to God. And then in Colossians 3:1,3 we read: If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. Yes in Romans 6:11 we read: Reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin BUT reckon yourselves to be alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
ALIVE unto God. What glorious words – ALIVE in Christ Jesus our Lord. ALIVE unto God – Our life hid with Christ in the Father. ALIVE unto God – Living – Life – Eternal Life,and because I live, you will live also. ALIVE unto God – we who were once alienated from the life of God. ALIVE unto God – we who were once dead in trespasses and sin. ALIVE unto God- we who are now to bring forth the fruit of righteousness. By the amazing grace of God – we who were once dead are alive.. alive unto God. What a great miracle of regeneration was performed in us– and in all who believe.
What a wonderful mystery of rebirth was executed in our old sinful former self. What a supernatural marvel of genesis was accomplished in our salvation. What a precious gift of grace that we should be called the sons of God. God called the message of His gracious offering of renewal..the gospel of grace. He then caused great news of this miraculous gift and deed,to be sent to us through Scripture. The written Word proclaiming the living Word. The One Who died unto sin that we may be made alive unto God. And so we were enabledread more