Paul and Timothy, bond-servants of Christ Jesus, To all the saints in Christ Jesus who are in Philippi, including the overseers and deacons:Philippians 1:1(NASB)
Your love for one another will prove to the worldthat you are My disciples.John 13:35 NLT
Love – not the presence of a lot of understanding and teaching and truth, and not the absence of all sorts of things – is the governing matter with the Lord. It is not that He Himself in His heart accepts the wrong things, but He sees through them, He sees differently from ourselves.... You can see there is no hope of building up unless there is love – and love for all men. You and I ought to be greatly concerned with this matter of building up. Oh, God only knows how much of spiritual increase and building is needed! It is a paralyzing situation that faces us if we look at our own limitations.
I am sure nothing is going to be done unless we have a very large heart to look over and in and through and beyond, refusing to be held by the thing that is glaring at us, striking us and hurting us, and reaching through to that which is true in the heart. It is love that builds. Moreover, it makes differences in those who exercise it, it brings them into rest. Truth alone may bring a strained look into the face and eyes. Love ought to bring into the countenance some suggestion of quiet strength and restful confidence....
Well, let us sit down in the armchair of His love and be at rest, and then get to work. You cannot work unless you have a background rest, and rest does not spring firstly from truth. It comes from love, God's love. Whatever else He gives us and adds to us, may the Lord make us a people who are characterized supremely by this love for one another and for all men.
The humble … shall increase their joy in the Lord, and the poor among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel. § Unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. § The incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit … is very precious in the sight of God. § Love does not parade itself, is not puffed up.
Pursue … gentleness. § Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart. § He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so He opened not his mouth. § Christ also 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 … but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously.
By honor and dishonor, by evil report and good report. § All who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. § The offense of the cross.
If I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ.
If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you … But let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or as a busybody in other people’s matters. Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter.
To you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake. § If One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again. § If we endure, we shall also reign with Him.
He said to me, My strength is sufficient, for it is only by means of conscious weakness that perfect power is developed" (2 Cor. 12:9, Wms.).
Our Father does not test our faith so much as He exercises and develops it. In time, He makes us aware of our utter weakness; and, in time, we trust and rest in His all-sufficient strength.
"Until we are carried quite out of our depth, beyond all our own wisdom and resources, we are no more than beginners in the school of faith. Only as everything fails us and we fail ourselves, do we draw upon abiding strength. Blessed is the man whose strength is in Thee'; not partly in Thee and partly in himself. The devil often makes men strong, strong in themselves to do evil - great conquerors, great acquirers of wealth and power. The Lord on the contrary makes His servant weak, puts him in circumstances that will show him his nothingness, that he may lean upon the strength that is unfailing. It is a long lesson for most of us, but it cannot be passed over until deeply learned. And God Himself thinks no trouble too great, no care too costly to teach us this."
"Faith counts on the Word of God outside and apart from everything and everyone here. When you are in faith your life is centered in the Lord Jesus. The moment the heart is detained by anything here, faith is obstructed. The visible is antagonistic to the invisible. If you walk in the Spirit you will be sensible of this in a moment; the effects and influences of the visible are counter to the invisible. Eve had lost faith when she saw that the tree was good for food, and pleasant to the eyes. If she had kept faith - dependence upon God - she would not have looked, but she had parted with the faith which overcometh the world when she saw.' The moment one becomes occupied with the visible one has parted company with faith." -J.B.S.
"Since His power is so glorious, may you be strengthened with strength of every kind, and be prepared for cheerfully enduring all things with patience and longsuffering" (Col. 1:11, Wey.).
Continually restate to yourself what the purpose of your life is. The destined end of man is not happiness, nor health, but holiness. Nowadays we have far too many affinities, we are dissipated with them; right, good, noble affinities which will yet have their fulfilment, but in the meantime God has to atrophy them. The one thing that matters is whether a man will accept the God Who will make him holy. At all costs a man must be rightly related to God.
Do I believe I need to be holy? Do I believe God can come into me and make me holy? If by your preaching you convince me that I am unholy, I resent your preaching. The preaching of the gospel awakens an intense resentment because it must reveal that I am unholy; but it also awakens an intense craving. God has one destined end for mankind, i.e.., holiness. His one aim is the production of saints. God is not an eternal blessing- machine for men; He did not come to save men out of pity: He came to save men because He had created them to be holy. The Atonement means that God can put me back into perfect union with Himself, without a shadow between, through the Death of Jesus Christ.
Never tolerate through sympathy with yourself or with others any practice that is not in keeping with a holy God. Holiness means unsullied walking with the feet, unsullied talking with the tongue, unsullied thinking with the mind - every detail of the life under the scrutiny of God. Holiness is not only what God gives me, but what I manifest that God has given me.
Now the promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. He does not say “and to seeds,” as though referring to many, but referring to One, and to your SEED, Who is Christ.
The eternal Son of God became the incarnate Word and was made flesh by being conceived of the Holy Spirit in a virgin’s womb and was born into the human race in the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ – the only begotten Son of the Father – so that He could claim of His renowned ancestor, before Abraham was I AM. The religious leaders of the Jews knew without a doubt that Jesus of Nazareth was making the bold pronouncement that He was God – for He had dared to use the sacred name of God in reference to Himself, I AM – before Abraham was.. I AM.
God alone could be assigned this illustrious title and anyone daring to use the name of “Yahweh” in reference to themselves was immediately regarded as a blasphemer. The Levitical law required ALL who blaspheme against God, to be stoned, and so we read that they picked up rocks to throw at Him. But Jesus was hidden and left the temple.
Christ’s claim that He existed before Abraham was inconceivable to these closed-minded and spiritually blind religious leaders of the Jews. They could only consider Christ’s claim from a human perspective and failed to comprehend the wonderful spiritual truth and astonishing fact that the eternal Son of God, in Whom dwelt all the riches of the Godhead bodily, was standing in their very midst.
Abraham, is often called the father of faith, and God gave him some truly amazing and wonderful promises. God pledged to make Abraham into a great nation. He promised that his name would be great and that he would be a wonderful blessing whereby all the people of the earth would be richly blessed.
And when He called him out of the city of Ur of the Chaldeans, Godread more
The power of the Lord was present to heal.
He could not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief.
What a glorious truth that “the power of the Lord is present to heal.” But there was a place where His power to heal was not a present help in trouble. There was a place where He could not help them – because of their unbelief.
He was never unwilling to give, for over and again we read, He healed them all Matt.12:15. We read in Luke chapter 4 that, when the sun was setting, ALL those who had any that were sick with various diseases brought them to Him; and He laid His hands on every one of them and healed them” Luke 4:40
God’s arm is not short. His heart is not cold – His power is not diminished.. for His healing touch comes through the almighty power of the almighty God – but He could not do many mighty works there.. because of their unbelief.” Matt.13:58 How sad –
God desired to pour out health and healing – but their foolish bias prevented Him. Their proud hearts were tightly shut against the rich blessings He brought.. hardened against Him, because of familiarity with Him! He desired to pour out on them healing and wholeness, but they dismissed Him. He came with rich blessings in His hands but carried them away with a sad heart.
The heart that is open to His presence will gladly partake of all His grace and love. Some even are sufficed to gather the crumbs that fall from the tables of others: “For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance, but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath.” Luke 19:26
Oh yes, He will give abundantly and He will give more abundantly – pressed down, shaken together and running over. Luke 6:38 There is never any lack of power toread more