Tuesday, December 25, 2012

SEEKING FOR JESUS--J.C. PHILPOT



"And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart." Jeremiah 29:13
     
      After the Lord has quickened our souls, for a time we often go, shall I say, blundering on, not knowing there is a Jesus. We think that the way of life is to keep God's commandments, obey the law, cleanse ourselves from sin, reform our lives, and cultivate universal holiness in thought, word, and action; and so we go, blundering and stumbling on in darkness; and all the while never get a single step forward. But when the Lord has suffered us to weary ourselves to find the door, and let us sink lower and lower into the pit of guilt and ruin, from feeling that all our attempts to extricate ourselves have only plunged us deeper and deeper, and the Spirit of God opens up to the understanding and brings into the soul some spiritual discovery of Jesus, and thus makes known that there is a Saviour, a Mediator, and a way of escape--this is the grand turning-point in our lives, the first opening in the valley of Achor of the door of hope.

And when the soul has once seen that there is a Jesus, and once felt a measure of the power of his resurrection, it never goes to any other quarter for pardon, justification, and salvation. When the Spirit of God begins to open up with power in his conscience that there is a Jesus, that he is the only Mediator, that the Son of God has come down and taken a holy human nature into union with himself, and is now at the right hand of the Father, it is the first break of day, the first dawn of hope; and upon that bright spot does the shipwrecked soul fix his longing eyes till the Sun of righteousness arises upon it with healing in his wings. It is a great step in a man's experience to turn wholly and solely to the Lord, and renounce all creature righteousness, all forms and ceremonies as a way of salvation. It is a great mercy to turn away from them, as the shipwrecked mariner turns away from his sinking ship, and looks to the rising sun to shew him some way of escape, and thus afford him some gleam of hope.

 JC PHILPOT - 1802-1869

Friday, December 14, 2012

A STRIKING EXAMPLE OF FAITH--J.C. RYLE




The conduct of the wise men is a striking example of faith. They believed in Christ when they had never seen Him – but that was not all. They believed in Him when the Scribes and Pharisees were unbelieving – but that again was not all. They believed in Him when they saw Him a little infant on Mary’s knee, and worshiped Him as a king. This was the crowning point of their faith. They saw no miracles to convince them. They heard no teaching to persuade them. They saw no signs of divinity and greatness to overawe them. They saw nothing but a new-born infant, helpless and weak, and needing a mother’s care like any one of ourselves. And yet when they saw that infant, they believed that they saw the divine Savior of the world. ‘They fell down and worshiped Him.’

We read of no greater faith than this in the whole volume of the Bible. It is a faith that deserves to be placed side by side with that of the penitent thief. The thief saw one dying the death of a criminal, and yet prayed to Him and ‘called Him Lord.’ The wise men saw a new-born babe on the lap of a poor woman, and yet worshiped Him and confessed that He was Christ. Blessed indeed are those that can believe in this fashion!


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

WHY SO LITTLE POWER?---ANDREW MURRAY



In the Church the question is evermore coming up, What can be the reason that Christianity has so little true power and so little fulfills all the wonderful promises that it makes? Read all the discussions that are going on, notice carefully all the plans and efforts that are suggested for enabling the Church to exercise the power it ought to have, and to influence men, either the masses of nominal Christians, or the millions of the heathen, and you will everywhere find how the thoughts and plans centre in what man's wisdom can devise and his zeal and energy can accomplish.

Everywhere there is the thought that if men will only keep up their courage and do their work faithfully, all must come right. How seldom the great truth is insisted on, or pressed home, that the Holy Spirit is our only power. An entire and absolute surrender to Him is our only hope. How seldom one hears from the leaders, to whom the Church looks for its guidance, the clear and unceasing summons : Brethren, pray. We must pray more; we must pray without ceasing; Prayer will bring blessing. The measure of prayer is the measure of power. Every deeper insight into what Christianity is, into what our daily life ought to be, into what the ministry is and needs, will all lead us to the one deep conviction: Christianity is nothing except it be supernatural. Our Christian life and work must be a failure, except as we live deeply rooted in the power of God s inspired Word, in the power of the Holy Spirit, and in the importunate prayer to which the promise of the Father will most surely be given.

All this brings us to the last lesson our word is going to teach us: There is no hope for the restoration of the Church, no hope of its being lifted up into the abundant life that there is in Christ, and so to be fitted in holiness and strength for the work that is so urgently calling, of making Christ known to every living creature, except in our return to God. Church of Christ ! GIVE GOD HIS PLACE. And take your place of absolute dependence, of unbroken fellowship, of unceasing prayer, of living, confident faith, and see if He will not turn and bless us above all that we can ask or think.  (The State of the Church, 1912).



Monday, November 19, 2012

A MEASURING OF AFFLICTIONS-JOSEPH CARYL



                                                                   
Satan usually keeps his greatest strength and most violent temptations unto the last. When he thinks we are at the weakest, then he commeth with the strongest assaults. If Satan had sent Job word of the death of his children first, all the rest would have been as nothing to him; he would not have regarded the loss of his cattle when he heard that all his Children were crushed to death by the fall of the house. As one great evil falling upon us, takes the heart off from having any sense and feeling of a lesser evil; that great evil which fell upon the Wife of Phineas, when she heard that the Ark of God was taken, afflicted her so extremely, that she could not at all rejoice in the birth of her son she had no sense of that. Here was therefore the cunning of Satan, lest Job should have lost the smart of the lesser afflictions, least they should have all been swallowed up in the greater, he brings them out in order, the least first, the greatest reserved for the last. 

We observe in war that when once the great ordinance are discharged, the soldiers are not afraid of the musket; so when a great battery is made by some thundering terrible judgement upon the soul, or upon the body or the estate of any man; the noise and fears of lesser evils are drowned and abated. Therefore Satan keeps his greatest shot to the last, that the small might be heard and felt, and that he last coming in greater strength might find the least strength to resist it.

To lose all our children is as grievous as to lose an only child; now that is made a cause of the highest sorrows, Zach 12:10. They shall mourn for him, as one that mourneth for his only son; that is, they shall mourn most bitterly. Now as the measure of mercies may be taken by the comforts which they produce, so we may take the measure of an affliction by the sorrow which it produceth, and that is the greatest affliction that causes the greatest sorrow.