to open their eyes so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the dominion of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who have been sanctified by faith in Me.'Acts 26:18(NASB)
Whoever wants to be My disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow Me. (Mark 8:34 NIV)
In the end it will be the End that judges our Christian life. And so it is the Holy Spirit’s work, His interest, concern, energy and activity; not only to bring people to the door and to get them inside the door, but to make them know that that door is but the opening of a Way, on the other side of the door lies everything. It is not the door alone, but it is what lies beyond the door, and that is this renewal, this making anew after the image of Him that created. The End governs: it is Christ in all that He signifies and means and stands for. It is that vast All that He is. “Christ is All, and in all” is the last clause. It is Christ in that fullness, which is more than our salvation, more than our initial salvation. The door is essential, but it is what it leads to that justifies going into it.
Christ Himself, when He was here, never failed to let people know that when they entered that door, or that straight and narrow way, they were in for trouble.... Now that may sound like a very terrible thing to say, especially to you young Christians who are not far inside the door, but be perfectly clear about it; the Lord Jesus never deceived anybody about this, never at all. He let people know that to “follow Him,” as He put it at that time, involved them in difficulty and suffering and persecution and trial as a lifelong thing. There is a cost here, a great cost. And we shall discover that while there are the compensations, for there are undoubtedly the compensations in this life, and the mighty compensations for eternity, this is a way which is not easy for the natural man by any means. This work of the Holy Spirit is drastic, exacting, and very trying to the flesh. Make no mistake about it; it will take all the energy that the Holy Spirit Himself has to accomplish this work. It really will. So the Lord Jesus has not left us in any doubt about this.
Lord, my heart is not haughty, nor my eyes lofty. Neither do I concern myself with great matters, nor with things too profound for me. Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with his mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me.
The secret of the Lord is with those who fear Him, and He will show them His covenant. § There is a God in heaven who reveals secrets. § Indeed these are the mere edges of His ways, and how small a whisper we hear of Him!
No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. § If you love Me, keep My commandments. And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever — the Spirit of truth.
Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you. Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full. § [Pray] always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit.
This is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him. § This is the will of God, your sanctification. God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness … Who has also given us His Holy Spirit.
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit.
These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace" (John 16:33).
Great will be the day when you come to realize that the sole reason for the existence of your Bible, your soul and your spirit is to glorify - and share - the Lord Jesus Christ. "The moment we begin to rest our peace on anything in ourselves, we lose it. And this is why so many saints have not settled peace. Nothing can be lasting that is not built on God alone. How can you have settled peace? Only by having it in God's way. By not resting on anything, even the Spirit's work within, but on what the Lord Jesus has done entirely outside you. Then you will know peace - conscious unworthiness, but yet peace. "In the Lord Jesus alone, God finds that in which He can rest concerning us, and so it is with His saints. The more you see the extent and nature of the evil that is within, as well as without, the more you will find that what the Lord Jesus is and did, is the only ground at all on which you can rest. "Alas! the freedom which the Gospel brings may be used to take things easy, and, more or less, retain or gain in the world; but where this is the case, it is seldom a soul possesses any large measure of spiritual enjoyment, and it is never accompanied by solid peace. The soul becomes thus unsettled and uncertain. These oscillations may go on for a certain time, until God carries on the work more deeply in the heart."
"As free, and not using your liberty for a cloak of maliciousness, but as the servants of God" (1 Pet 2:16).
“And beside this … add . .” 2 Peter 1:5
You have inherited the Divine nature, says Peter (v.4), now screw your attention down and form habits, give diligence, concentrate. "Add" means all that character means. No man is born either naturally or supernaturally with character, he has to make character. Nor are we born with habits; we have to form habits on the basis of the new life God has put into us. We are not meant to be illuminated versions, but the common stuff of ordinary life exhibiting the marvel of the grace of God. Drudgery is the touchstone of character. The great hindrance in spiritual life is that we will look for big things to do. "Jesus took a towel…and began to wash the disciples' feet."
There are times when there is no illumination and no thrill, but just the daily round, the common task. Routine is God's way of saving us between our times of inspiration. Do not expect God always to give you His thrilling minutes, but learn to live in the domain of drudgery by the power of God.
It is the "adding" that is difficult. We say we do not expect God to carry us to heaven on flowery beds of ease, and yet we act as if we did! The tiniest detail in which I obey has all the omnipotent power of the grace of God behind it. If I do my duty, not for duty's sake, but because I believe God is engineering my circumstances, then at the very point of my obedience the whole superb grace of God is mine through the Atonement.
Through the tender mercy of our God.
God is gracious and merciful and full of tender, loving-kindness. I don’t know what I would do if God were not full of tender-mercy. In tender-mercy He stooped down to forgive the rebellion of the children of Adam: “LORD, be merciful to me; heal my soul, for I have sinned against You”. Pleas for His tender-mercy runs like a golden thread through the book of Psalms. In Psalm 119:58 we read: “I entreated Your favour with my whole heart. Be merciful to me according to Your Word”. Reminders of His tender-mercy flow like refreshing streams through His Word: “The LORD is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in mercy”. Psalm 145:8
Oh there are so many of God’s wonderful, divine attributes that would turn us away! His Holiness would turn away one so sinful as I, without His tender-mercy. His Truth would similarly bar entry to one so false as I, without His tender-mercy. His Justice would certainly condemn me immediately, without His tender-mercy. His Sovereignty wound not admit a pauper such as I, without His tender-mercy. It was only the Tender-Mercy and loving-kindness of God that reached down, to one such as I.. who am nothing and who deserves nothing.
It was only His tender-mercy and loving-kindness Who conceived the cross – the cross to which we can flee to as a city of refuge and a citadel of shelter. My refuge is in the heart of a merciful God. What a cry from the sentiments of that cherished old hymn can be uttered.. by the One that desperately yearns and long for His tender-mercies: “Nearer my God to Thee, nearer to Thee”… closer to Thee. “Even though it is a cruel cross of pain and sorrow, that raises me” – that lifts me closer to You.
I thank God for His sanctuary.. this shelter – this place of protection. I thank God for His hiding-placee.I thank God that He is this havenread more
Do you really know Jesus ? Some years ago Dr S.M Lockridge described Him is these breath-taking terms….
The Bible says he’s a king
King of Jew,
King of Israel
King of righteousness
King of the ages
King of heaven
King of glory
King of kings and lord of lords
My king is a sovereign king
Yes, that’s my king
I wonder if you know Him ?
No means of measure can define His limitless love
He’s enduringly strong
He’s entirely sincere
He’s eternally steadfast
He’s immortally graceful
He’s imperially powerful
He’s impartially merciful
Do you know Him ?
He’s the greatest phenomenon that has ever crossed the horizon of this world
He’s God’s son
He’s the sinner’s Saviour
He’s the centre-piece of civilization
He’s unparalleled – He’s unprecedented
He is the loftiest idea in literature
He’s the highest personality in philosophy
He’s the fundamental doctrine of true theology
He’s the only one qualified to be an all-sufficient Saviour
I wonder if you know Him today ?
He supplies strength for the weak
He’s available for the tempted and the tried
He sympathises and He saves
He strengthens and He sustains
He guards and he guides
He healed the sick, He cleansed the lepers
He forgives sinners He discharges debtors
He delivers the captive
He defends the feeble
He blesses the young
He serves the unfortunate
He regards the aged
He rewards the diligent
He beautifies the meek
I wonder if you know Him ?
He’s the key to knowledge
He’s the wellspring of wisdom
He’s the doorway of deliverance
He’s the pathway of peace
He’s the roadway of righteousness
He’s the highway of holiness
He’s the gateway of glory
Do you know Him ?
His life is matchless
His office is manifold
His promises are sure
His goodness is limitless
His mercy is everlasting
His love never changes
His word is enough
His grace is sufficient
His reign is righteous
His life is matchless
And His yoke is easy and His burden is light
I wish I could describe Him to you!
He is indescribable
He is indestructible