But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared,Titus 3:4(NASB)
I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ. (Galatians 1:12 ESV)
Those of us who have tasted of this world's springs have recognized the kinship between what is there and what is in religion so far as that soul-nature is concerned. It is only a matter of difference of realms, not of nature. What the music and drama of the world produce in one way – the soul-stirring, rousing, craving: the pathos, tears, contempt, hatred, anger, melancholy, pleasure, etc. – are all the same, only under different auspices and in a different setting, and the fact is that it passes and we are really no further on. A little better music, a change of preacher, a less familiar place, a few more thrills, will perhaps stimulate our souls, but where are we, after all? How Satan must laugh behind his mask! Oh, for reality, the reality of the eternal! Oh, that men might see that, while a highly cultivated soul with a keen sense of the beautiful and sublime is immeasurably preferable to a sordid one so far as this world is concerned, it is not necessarily a criterion that such has a personal living knowledge of God – of God as a Person – and has really been born anew!
When we pray for "Revival" let us be careful as to what we are after and as to what means we use to promote it, or carry it on.... The Apostle Paul makes it very clear that the secret of everything in his life and service was the fact that he received his gospel "by revelation." We may even know the Bible most perfectly as a book, and yet be spiritually dead and ineffective. When the Scriptures say so much about the knowledge of God and of the truth as the basis of eternal life, resulting in being set free, doing exploits, etc., they also affirm that man cannot by searching find out God, and they make it abundantly clear that it is knowledge in the spirit, not in the natural mind. Thus, a rich knowledge of the Scriptures, an accurate technical grasp of Christian doctrine, a doing of Christian work by all the resources of men's natural wisdom or ability, a clever manipulation and interesting presentation of Bible content and themes, may get not one whit beyond the natural life of men, and still remain within the realms of spiritual death. Men cannot be argued, reasoned, fascinated, interested, "emotioned," willed, enthused, impassioned, into the kingdom of the heavens; they can only be born; and that is by spiritual quickening.
Unto You I lift up my eyes, O You who dwell in the heavens. Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their masters, as the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress, so our eyes look to the Lord our God. § Hear my cry, O God; attend to my prayer. From the end of the earth I will cry to You, when my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For You have been a shelter for me, a strong tower from the enemy. I will abide in Your tabernacle forever; I will trust in the shelter of Your wings. § You have been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm.
Christ … suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: “Who committed no sin, nor was deceit found in His mouth;” who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously.
We were troubled on every side. Outside were conflicts, inside were fears. § Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them. § Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.
You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. God is my strength and power … He teaches my hands to make war, so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze. § Our sufficiency is from God.
The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him, and delivers them. § Behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.
The time would fail me to tell of [those] … who through faith subdued kingdoms … out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.
Crucified with Him" (Rom. 6:6).
Often when a believer finally sees his identification with the Lord Jesus in His death and resurrection, as set forth in Romans Six, he will then seek to experience it by self-effort. The net result: Romans Seven!
"As our Substitute He went to the Cross alone, without us, to pay the penalty of our sins; as our Representative He took us with Him to the Cross, and there, in the sight of God, we all died together with the Lord Jesus. We may be forgiven because He died in our stead; we may be delivered because we died with Him.
"God's way of deliverance for us, a race of hopeless incurables, is to put us away in the Cross of His Son, and then to make a new beginning by re-creating us in union with Him, the Risen, Living One. It is the Holy Spirit who will make these great facts real and true in our experience as we depend upon Him; and so the plague of our hearts will be stayed, and we shall go on to be conformed to the image of the Lord Jesus Christ." -J.C.M.
"The Holy Spirit so unites us to Christ that Christian experience becomes a reproduction in us of the essential facts of Christ's fourfold revelation He died unto sin: with Him we died (Col. 2:20). He arose: with Him we are risen (Col. 3:1). He is in heaven: our life is hid with Christ in God (Col. 3:3). He will appear again: with Him we shall appear in glory (Col. 3:4)." -N.B.H.
"Risen with Christ" (Col. 3:1).
“… so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus.” Acts 20:24
Joy means the perfect fulfillment of that for which I was created and regenerated, not the successful doing of a thing. The joy Our Lord had lay in doing what the Father sent Him to do, and He said - "As My Father hath sent Me, even so am I sending you." Have I received a ministry from the Lord? If so, I have to be loyal to it, to count my life precious only for the fulfilling of that ministry. Think of the satisfaction it will be to hear Jesus say - "Well done, good and faithful servant"; to know that you have done what He sent you to do. We have all to find our niche in life, and spiritually we find it when we receive our ministry from the Lord. In order to do this we must have companied with Jesus; we must know Him as more than a personal Saviour. "I will show him how great things he must suffer for My sake."
"Lovest thou Me?" Then - "Feed My sheep." There is no choice of service, only absolute loyalty to Our Lord's commission; loyalty to what you discern when you are in closest contact with God. If you have received a ministry from the Lord Jesus, you will know that the need is never the call: the need is the opportunity. The call is loyalty to the ministry you received when you were in real touch with Him. This does not imply that there is a campaign of service marked out for you, but it does mean that you will have to ignore the demands for service along any other lines.
Don’t be anxious about anything; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God…. and my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.
We live in difficult times –anxious times – and life is a real struggle in so many ways. The heart of man is so often perturbed about the unknown, unpredictable future – but the Word clearly tells us: “God will provide according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus. So many unforeseen eventualities may occur – will our little cruise of oil run dry? Such countless stories of stresses and distresses – will there be ‘meal‘ in the morning? Will God provide, according to His glorious riches in Christ?
Oh God has provided all I have needed in the past, but the future looks very bleak.. Times are bitterly hard – others are in despair – can I really trust Him in all things? Oh dear – and my insurance policy is not fully paid up! How can I cope – and how can God cope? Can God really provide… according to His glorious riches in Christ? Wealth may disappear overnight.. governments may introduce crippling policies. Health may fail, work disappears, friends desert you, family betray you…so HOW can God provide… according to His glorious riches in Christ?
Just remember… From Genesis to Revelation God slowly and gradually revealed Himself to man. First as the great Creator of the universe… in the beginning God created. Then as Adam’s relational Lord… who visited His people in the cool of the day. To Abraham, He became Jehovah-Jireh, – the Lord my Provider….. In Jesus, He was fully and finally revealed as Immanuel God with us. Oh yes from Genesis to Revelation there are examples of God’s gracious provision. Open any page of scripture and you’ll discover His glorious gifts of plenteous supply.
His primary provision is His grace in providingread more
Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when turn to the right hand or to the left.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
The Christian life teaches us many lessons. Life’s lessons are not always easy to learn. Some lessons are quickly understood and others take a lifetime to grasp. Sometimes we are required to learn a teaching again and again. Some instructions need to be assimilated little by little.. for precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little. Isaiah 28:10
One hard lesson to learn is that God’s “best” for us may not be our choice. The path God puts us on, may run counter to our personal wishes. The road we are forced to travel, may run contrary to our preferred desires.. but God’s choice for your life is His very best for you, even though you sometimes kick against the thorny path that you are forced to trudge; even though you may feel caged in by circumstances; even though you may be dissatisfied with your lot; even though you sometimes long for the open road and the mountain tops – even though you are beset by doubts that your life is accomplishing anything.
Remember.. His way is the best way for His way is the way of the cross. Settle the matter in your mind, dear child of God, that He directs your path. Resolve in your heart that His leadings are for your greater joy and eternal glory. Such a man is one who fears the Lord – he is one who trusts in His love. Such a woman is one that submits to His guidance – in gentleness of spirit.
Learn the lesson of Hisread more