Isa 43:10 Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me

Friday, January 30, 2015

The Two Olive Trees And The Two Anointed Ones.

The symbolism here is familiar. Two is the number of testimony or witness. Trees are very often symbolic of man or men as witness or witnesses.

The Olive, as is apparent in this chapter, especially relates to the oil. 

The position of these two trees is on either side of the Candlestick.

These are the two anointed ones which stand before the Lord of the whole earth.

There is no doubt that the two olive trees bring into view, firstly and historically, Joshua the High Priest and Zerubbabel the Governor. 

The first speech was concerning the High Priesthood and its ministry, and the second speech, is concerning the Government or sovereignty.

This interpreted prophetically relates to the Lord Jesus. His High Priestly work and position first come into view and are established in glory. Then He is established by God as Lord and Sovereign-Head. 

On these two sides of His one Person He ever gives the meaning of the candlestick; that is, He defines the nature of its vocation, and supplies the unfailing resource for that testimony. 

It is, as we have said, constituted according to Christ, and maintained by Him in all the fulness of His anointing. 

The Divine explanation of this is "This is the word of Jehovah unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord of Hosts."

Here we reach the central meaning of the vision as to the executing of the purpose of God. It speaks for itself. Its clear affirmation is that this instrument and this testimony must be utterly in the hands of the Holy Spirit. 

Not might, nor power of brain, will, emotion, organization, machinery, committee, influence, reputation, numbers, name, personality, outfit, enthusiasm, etc., but solely the Holy Spirit! 

The accounting for this will never be in truth - whatever superficial observers may say - attributable to any human force or resource, but all who have any spiritual intelligence will have to recognize that its energy and power is Divine. 

This will also be proved by its endurance and persistence through the intense fires of opposition and antagonism.

Here the Holy Spirit is allowed to govern and dictate, to direct and choose or reject, just as in the "Acts" at the beginning. 

To have such an instrument and such a testimony there will need to be a very revolutionary re-shaping of ideas. It will be necessary to realize that all those things upon which men have come to count as most important factors in the Lord's work are really not necessarily factors at all. 

It will have to be recognized that education, business ability, worldly wisdom, personal ability, money, etc., as such have nothing to do with the work of the Holy Spirit or with Christianity.

The Lord may use these, call them in, and if they are kept in their right place they may serve Him greatly, but they are secondary, and He can easily dispense with them.

It is of infinitely greater importance and value that men should be filled with the Holy Spirit, and if a choice is to be made, the very first consideration should ever be as to whether this is the case. 

There is a wisdom, judgment, discernment, knowledge, understanding by the Holy Spirit which is the only kind which is equal to that which is to be wholly according to God.

Thus the Lord Jesus as the Great Mediator and Sovereign Head would maintain His testimony wholly in accordance with His own nature and mind in the fulness of the Spirit of His own anointing. 

~T. Austin Sparks~

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The Switchman

Php 3:13  Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, 

One of Satan's favorite employees is the switchman. He likes nothing better than to side-track one of God's express trains, sent on some blessed mission and filled with the fire of a holy purpose.

Something will come up in the pathway of the earnest soul, to attract its attention and occupy its strength and thought. 

Sometimes it is a little irritation and provocation. 

Sometimes it is some petty grievance we stop to pursue or adjust.

Sometimes it is somebody else's business in which we become interested, and which we feel bound to rectify, and before we know, we are absorbed in a lot of distracting cares and interests that quite turn us aside from the great purpose of our life.

Perhaps we do not do much harm, but we have missed our connection. We have got off the main line.

Let all these things alone. Let grievances come and go, but press forward steadily and irresistibly, crying, as you haste to the goal, "This one thing I do."

~A. B. Simpson~

Friday, January 23, 2015

School Of Suffering

John 18:11  Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it? 

This was a greater thing to say and do than to calm the seas or raise the dead. Prophets and apostles could work wondrous miracles, but they could not always do and suffer the will of God. 

To do and suffer God's will is still the highest form of faith, the most sublime Christian achievement. 

To have the bright aspirations of a young life forever blasted; to bear a daily burden never congenial and to see no relief; to be pinched by poverty when you only desire a competency for the good and comfort of loved ones; to be fettered by some incurable physical disability; to be stripped bare of loved ones until you stand alone to meet the shocks of life--to be able to say in such a school of discipline, "The cup which my Father has given me, shall I not drink it?'--this is faith at its highest and spiritual success at the crowning point.

Great faith is exhibited not so much in ability to do as to suffer. 

~Dr. Charles Parkhurst~

To have a sympathizing God we must have a suffering Saviour, and there is no true fellow-feeling with another save in the heart of him who has been afflicted like him.

We cannot do good to others save at a cost to ourselves, and our afflictions are the price we pay for our ability to sympathize. He who would be a helper, must first be a sufferer. 

He who would be a saviour must somewhere and somehow have been upon a cross; and we cannot have the highest happiness of life in succoring others without tasting the cup which Jesus drank, and submitting to the baptism wherewith He was baptized.

The most comforting of David's psalms were pressed out by suffering; and if Paul had not had his thorn in the flesh we had missed much of that tenderness which quivers in so many of his letters.

The present circumstance, which presses so hard against you (if surrendered to Christ), is the best shaped tool in the Father's hand to chisel you for eternity. Trust Him, then. Do not push away the instrument lest you lose its work."

Strange and difficult indeed We may find it, But the blessing that we need Is behind it.      

The school of suffering graduates rare scholars.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

God's Enemies Shall Bow

The ungodly world is hard to teach. Egypt does not know Jehovah and therefore dares to set up its idols and even ventures to ask, "Who is the LORD?"

Yet the LORD means to break proud hearts, whether they will or not.

When His judgments thunder over their heads, darken their skies, destroy their harvests, and slay their sons, they begin to discern somewhat of Jehovah's power.

There will yet be such things done in the earth as shall bring skeptics to their knees.

Let us not be dismayed because of their blasphemies, for the LORD can take care of His own name, and He will do so in a very effectual manner.

The salvation of His own people was another potent means of making Egypt know that the God of Israel was Jehovah, the living and true God.

No Israelite died by any one of the ten plagues. None of the chosen seed were drowned in the Red Sea.

Even so, the salvation of the elect and the sure glorification of all true believers will make the most obstinate of God's enemies acknowledge that Jehovah, He is the God.

Oh, that His convincing power would go forth by His Holy Spirit in the preaching of the gospel, till all nations shall bow at the name of Jesus and call Him LORD!

~Charles Spurgeon~

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Whatever The Cost

Gen 22:16  And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son:

Gen 22:17  That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; 

Gen 22:18  And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.   

And from that day to this, men have been learning that when, at God's voice, they surrender up to Him the one thing above all else that was dearest to their very hearts, that same thing is returned to them by Him a thousand times over.

Abraham gives up his one and only son, at God's call, and with this disappear all his hopes for the boy's life and manhood, and for a noble family bearing his name.

But the boy is restored, the family becomes as the stars and sands in number, and out of it, in the fullness of time, appears Jesus Christ.

That is just the way God meets every real sacrifice of every child of His.

We surrender all and accept poverty; and He sends wealth.

We renounce a rich field of service; He sends us a richer one than we had dared to dream of.

We give up all our cherished hopes, and die unto self; He sends us the life more abundant, and tingling joy.

And the crown of it all is our Jesus Christ. For we can never know the fullness of the life that is in Christ until we have made Abraham's supreme sacrifice.

The earthly founder of the family of Christ must commence by losing himself and his only son, just as the Heavenly Founder of that family did.

We cannot be members of that family with the full privileges and joys of membership upon any other basis. 

~C. G. Trumbull~

We sometimes seem to forget that what God takes He takes in fire; and that the only way to the resurrection life and the ascension mount is the way of the garden, the cross, and the grave.

Think not, O soul of man, that Abraham's was a unique and solitary experience.

It is simply a specimen and pattern of God's dealings with all souls who are prepared to obey Him at whatever cost.

After thou hast patiently endured, thou shalt receive the promise.

The moment of supreme sacrifice shall be the moment of supreme and rapturous blessing.

God's river, which is full of water, shall burst its banks, and pour upon thee a tide of wealth and grace. 

There is nothing, indeed, which God will not do for a man who dares to step out upon what seems to be the mist; though as he puts down his foot he finds a rock beneath him. 

~F. B. Meyer~

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Satan's Endeavour To Make Christianity A Legal System

Now at that point things divided. There is the true foundation, the true beginning, and the meaning of the Spirit being in us, but at a point with these people, the thing divided.

They moved away from the true guidance, the true constraint, the true movement of the Spirit on to an artificial one, and their Christian lives began to become artificial.

The reason was that these Judaizers came along, always on Paul's heels to try to destroy his ministry.

They came along and said, "You must be circumcised; except you be circumcised, you cannot be saved" - bringing in again the old legal idea, and making even Christianity into something legal.

It is a persistent thing all the way along. It is one of Satan's persistent objects, not to turn us away from Christianity necessarily, but to make Christianity something which it really is not, and to turn the great blessedness, joy, life and liberty of a true Christian life into something burdensome, something difficult and hard.

It is so easy just to come to a point where, from what has been a really living and blessed experience and enjoyment of the Lord, Christianity becomes something of laws and regulations, and we begin to feel that the Christian life is a strain.

Something has happened. A twist is being given to it, and now the whole prospect is one without real joy, without real liberty.

It is a case of, "You must!" It is the big stick kind of thing. "You must, and if you do not, woe betide you!"

It is easy for anything in Christianity to become like that, so that the Christian life now has become a burden, and the work of the Lord has become a burden.

Then we are more slaves than sons. That is what the apostle is arguing in this letter: "Thou art no longer a bondservant, but a son" (4:7).

But what has brought about this change? We have begun to take on something which for us is not living; it is not for us a matter of life, it is a matter of something that we have to measure up to and try to attain, of trying to be something that we are not, and so the thing becomes a weight and a burden.

It is an artificial kind of Christianity.

But over against that, the apostle is saying this, that immediately things begin to get like that, something has gone wrong.

If ever the Christian life begins to appear like that and become something like that to you, things have gone wrong; you have ceased to move in the Spirit, you have got on to some other ground.

The Spirit is the Spirit of life and of liberty. What do we mean by life and liberty? Well, the spirit of rest - just the opposite of burdensomeness.

~T. Austin Sparks~

Friday, January 16, 2015

The Comfort Of Having A Friend To Listen

In one sense, one of the duties of friendship is just to lend an ear.

It is an untold comfort when troubles are depressing us to have someone in whom we can confide.

A brother is born for adversity, not just that he may lend a helping hand. 

A helping hand may be a blessed thing, but a helping heart is often better.

To have somebody to whom we can open our hearts in the certainty of perfect understanding is one of the choicest gifts of human life.

Visitors among the poor have experienced that. How often they bring comfort by just listening!

Poor folk, toiling away bravely, discover an easing of their trouble when they can pour it all, if only for an hour, into a listening and appreciative ear.

Now it was that easing which David found in God. He showed before Him his trouble.

He did not brood on it in solitary bitterness; he quietly laid it before God.

And though the trouble didn't disappear any more than the thorn of the Apostle, he gained a sweet serenity of spirit which made him capable of bearing anything.

And, indeed, that is the real victory of faith and of all who quietly wait on God.

It may not banish all the trouble, but it always brings the power to bear it beautifully.

There is a deep-rooted feeling in the heart that if we are God's, we ought to have exemption.

Troubles that afflict the faithless soul ought to be averted from the faithful. But the age-long experience of God's children and all the sufferings of His beloved Son proclaim that this is not so. 

David was not protected from life's troubles, nor was Paul or our blessed Savior.

David knew, in all its bitterness, what a thing of trouble our human life may be.

His victory, and that of all the saints who have learned to show their trouble before God, was an inward peace that the world can never give and the darkest mile can never take away.

God does not save His children from that dark mile. He saves His children in that dark mile. 

Whenever they show their trouble before Him, He shows His lovingkindness to them.

He keeps them from an embittered heart; He puts beneath them the everlasting arm; He makes them more than conquerors in Christ.

~George H. Morrison~

Wednesday, January 14, 2015


John 10:4  And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.

This is intensely difficult work for Him and us~it is difficult for us to go, but equally difficult for Him to cause us pain.Yet it must be done.

It would not be in our best interest to always remain in one happy and comfortable location.Therefore He moves us forward.

The shepherd leaves the fold so the sheep will move on to the vitalizing mountain slopes. In the same way, laborers must be driven out into the harvest, or else the golden grain would spoil.

But take heart! It could never be better to stay once He determines otherwise; if the loving hand of our Lord moves us forward, it must be best. 

Forward, in His name, to green pastures, quiet waters, and mountain heights! (See Ps. 23:2.) 

He goes on ahead of [us]. So whatever awaits us is encountered first by Him, and the eye of faith can always discern His majestic presence out in front.

When His presence cannot be seen, it is dangerous to move ahead.

Comfort your heart with the fact that the Savior has Himself experienced all the trials He asks you to endure; He would not ask you to pass through them unless He was sure that the paths were not too difficult or strenuous for you.

This is the blessed life~not anxious to see far down the road nor overly concerned about the next step, not eager to choose the path nor weighted down with the heavy responsibilities of the future, but quietly following the Shepherd, one step at a time.

Dark is the sky! and veiled the unknown morrow! Dark is life’s way, for night is not yet o’er; 

The longed-for glimpse I may not meanwhile borrow; But, this I know and trust, HE GOES BEFORE.

Dangers are near! and fears my mind are shaking; Heart seems to dread what life may hold in store;

But I am His~He knows the way I’m taking, More blessed even still...HE GOES BEFORE.

Doubts cast their weird, unwelcome shadows o’er me, Doubts that life’s best~life’s choicest things are o’er; 

What but His Word can strengthen, can restore me, And this blest fact; that still HE GOES BEFORE.

HE GOES BEFORE! Be this my consolation! He goes before! On this my heart would dwell!

He goes before! This guarantees salvation! HE GOES BEFORE! And therefore all is well.

~J. Danson Smith~

The oriental shepherd always walked ahead of his sheep. He was always out in front. Any attack upon the sheep had to take him into account first. 

Now God is out in front. He is in our tomorrows, and it is tomorrow that fills people with fear. 

Yet God is already there. All the tomorrows of our life have to pass through Him before they can get to us.

~F. B. Meyer~

God is in every tomorrow, Therefore I live for today, Certain of finding at sunrise, Guidance and strength for my way;

Power for each moment of weakness, Hope for each moment of pain, Comfort for every sorrow, Sunshine and joy after rain.

Monday, January 12, 2015


Mat 7:7  Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:

We must receive, as well as ask. We must take the place of believing, and recognize ourselves as in it. 

A friend was saying, "I want to get into the will of God," and this was the answer: "Will you step into the will of God?

And now, are you in the will of God?" The question aroused a thought that had not come before.

The gentleman saw that he had been straining after, but not receiving the blessing he sought.

Jesus has said, "Ask and ye shall receive." The very strain keeps back the blessing. 

The intense tension of all your spiritual nature so binds you that you are not open to the blessing which God is waiting to give you. "Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely."

He tells me there is cleansing From every secret sin, And a great and full salvation To keep the heart within.

And I take Him in His fulness, With all His glorious grace, For He says it is mine by taking, And I take just what He says.

~A. B. Simpson~

Sunday, January 11, 2015

The Value Of Prayer

Prayer in virtue of the blood of the Lord Jesus touches the deepest things, touches everything and is associated with everything.

It is as though the Lord were saying, Yes, there is an atonement; in the most holy place atonement has been made. 

Yes, there is a mercy seat for communion. Yes, there is every provision. 

But for a daily value of that, a prayer life is essential.

All this is ministry by prayer, is entered into by prayer. There is nothing however great and comprehensive the divine provision may be — which can be known independently of prayer.

Find a prayerless life, and all the great, wonderful meaning of God's provision in Christ is of little real value.

There is no entering gloriously into God's great provision where prayer life is at low ebb.

Whether it be communion with God, that communion is in prayer; whether it be in testimony to the world, that testimony is made effectual through prayer; whether it is in feeding upon Christ, the Living Bread, that is by prayer.

You say, The Word! Yes, but what is the Word without prayer? 

If you divorce your Bible from your prayer life you simply have a Book of laws and instructions, a manual, and you become merely theological or doctrinal.

But prayer in association with the Word makes the Word live and makes it of spiritual value.

Notice what the Lord said: "When Aaron dresses the lamps in the morning, he shall offer incense". 

What does he do in dressing the lamps? He takes the snuffers. 

Some wick has got a bit dry and used up, and it is smouldering and smoking and filling the atmosphere with something that is not pleasant, and that is the flesh.

This old man does get up, and this flesh life does manifest itself from time to time.

Even though we have the Spirit, the flesh becomes unsteady at times, and there is always the possibility very near at hand of the flesh and the self and the old nature filling the air with something obnoxious, unpleasant, smoky and smouldering. 

That has got to be trimmed every morning by prayer: "Lord, trim the smouldering wick of my fleshly lips, of my fleshly doing; trim my nature, Lord, this morning.

Cut off that which is me, which if not cut off today will make for much that is regrettable, and fill the day with cloudy, smoky, smouldering flesh.

Aaron trimmed the lamps with prayer every morning, and every evening when he lit the lamps he offered incense.

There is always darkness about, ready to encroach and overcome the heart which is God's sanctuary, and it has got to be withstood lest the light which is in us become darkness.

~T. Austin Sparks~

Friday, January 9, 2015

Gaining By Giving

Pro 11:25  The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself.

If I desire to flourish in soul, I must not hoard up my stores but must distribute to the poor. 

To be close and niggardly is the world's way to prosperity, but it is not God's way, for He saith, "There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, and it tendeth to poverty."

Faith's way of gaining is giving. I must try this again and again, and I may expect that as much of prosperity as will be good for me will come to me as a gracious reward for a liberal course of action.

Of course, I may not be sure of growing rich. I shall be fat but not too fat.

Too great riches might make me as unwieldy as corpulent persons usually are and cause me the dyspepsia of worldliness, and perhaps bring on a fatty degeneration of the heart.

No, if I am fat enough to be healthy, I may well be satisfied; and if the LORD grants me a competence, I may be thoroughly content. 

But there is a mental and spiritual fatness which I would greatly covet, and this comes as the result of generous thoughts toward my God, His church, and my fellow men.

Let me not stint, lest I starve my heart. Let me be bountiful and liberal, for so shall I be like my LORD. He gave Himself for me; shall I grudge Him anything? 

~Charles Spurgeon~

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Natural Emotions Or The Love Of Christ


Paul wrote to the Galatians: "Ye were running well: what did hinder...?"

Something had broken in and interrupted their running in the spiritual race.

This was extremely serious and disturbed Paul the depths of his being.

It seems that in the case of the Galatians it was again the natural man, but this time in the realm of natural emotions.

They seem to have been of that temperamental constitution which corresponds to Christ's words in the parable about seed falling into shallow soil.

The seed was received quickly and earnestly, but did not go on to produce a harvest.

There are some people who make an enthusiastic start in this way and make quite a stir about it, but then do not go steadily on.

These Galatians were like that; they made a tremendous response; they loudly protested their devotion; and then they were very quick to drop out of the race. Why? Because they lived on their emotions, on their feelings, and these were changeable.

This may well be a matter of temperament, but in fact something of such a characteristic can be found in most of us. We respond to an appeal, come under the power of a great emotion, and then slack off. In the words of the Lord Jesus: "When tribulation or persecution ariseth... he is offended" (Matthew 13:21).

Clearly, then, if you and I are going to persevere to the end we must have a greater power than that of our natural emotional life.

The only hope is that it may be true of us, as of Paul: "The love of Christ constraineth" (2 Corinthians 5:14).

There is all the difference between the natural and the spiritual in this matter of the energy of love.

This word translated 'constraineth' is the same one used over the arrest of Jesus when it says: "the men that HELD Jesus" (Luke 22:63). They took a purchase on Him; they were not going to let Him escape; He was a prize, and they expected a reward for arresting Him.

So it is that the love of Christ should hold or grip us, conquering our natural emotions by the mighty power of the Spirit.

Our feelings come and go. They may be strong at times but they can also grow very weak.

If we do not know something of the mighty grip of Christ's love, we will never go right through to the end of this strenuous race.

After all it is the love of Christ which makes for the fullness of Christ.

If we finally come to that fullness it can only be by the constraint and holding power of His love.

Ye were running well: who did hinder you? The answer is, You ran in the strength of your own emotions, you ran as your enthusiastic response to God's call because it affected your feelings for the time.

The letter to the Galatians is devoted to emphasizing the place of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer, for He alone can supply the necessary energy of love for us to go on running well.

~T. Austin Sparks~

Sunday, January 4, 2015

The Giants

 There we saw the giants (Num. 13:33). 

Yes, they saw the giants, but Caleb and Joshua saw God! Those who doubt say, "We be not able to go up." Those who believe say, "Let us go up at once and possess it, for we are well able."

Giants stand for great difficulties; and giants are stalking everywhere. They are in our families, in our churches, in our social life, in our own hearts; and we must overcome them or they will eat us up, as these men of old said of the giants of Canaan.

The men of faith said, "They are bread for us; we will eat them up." In other words, "We will be stronger by overcoming them than if there had been no giants to overcome."

Now the fact is, unless we have the overcoming faith we shall be eaten up, consumed by the giants in our path. Let us have the spirit of faith that these men of faith had, and see God, and He will take care of the difficulties.


It is when we are in the way of duty that we find giants. It was when Israel was going forward that the, giants appeared. When they turned back into the wilderness they found none.

There is a prevalent idea that the power of God in a human life should lift us above all trials and conflicts. The fact is, the power of God always brings a conflict and a struggle.

One would have thought that on his great missionary journey to Rome, Paul would have been carried by some mighty providence above the power of storms and tempests and enemies. 

But, on the contrary, it was one long, hard fight with persecuting Jews, with wild tempests, with venomous vipers and all the powers of earth and hell, and at last he was saved, as it seemed, by the narrowest margin, and had to swim ashore at Malta on a piece of wreckage and barely escape a watery grave.

Was that like a God of infinite power? Yes, just like Him. And so Paul tells us that when he took the Lord Jesus Christ as the life of his body, a severe conflict immediately came; indeed, a conflict that never ended, a pressure that was persistent, but out of which he always emerged victorious through the strength of Jesus Christ.

The language in which he describes this is most graphic. "We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed, always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be manifested in our body."

What a ceaseless, strenuous struggle! It is impossible to express in English the forcible language of the original. 

There are five pictures in succession. In the first, the idea is crowding enemies pressing in from every side, and yet not crushing him because the police of heaven cleared the way just wide enough for him to get through. The literal translation would be, "We are crowded on every side, but not crushed."

The second picture is that of one whose way seems utterly closed and yet he has pressed through; there is light enough to show him the next step.

The third figure is that of an enemy in hot pursuit while the divine Defender still stands by, and he is not left alone. Again we adopt the fine rendering of Rotherham, "Pursued but not abandoned."

The fourth figure is still more vivid and dramatic. The enemy has overtaken him, has struck him, has knocked him down. But it is not a fatal blow; he is able to rise again. It might be translated, "Overthrown but not overcome."

Once more the figure advances, and now it seems to be even death itself, "Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus." But he does not die, for "the life also of Jesus" now comes to his aid and he lives in the life of another until his life work is done.

The reason so many fail in this experience of divine healing is because they expect to have it all without a struggle, and when the conflict comes and the battle wages long, they become discouraged and surrender.

God has nothing worth having that is easy. There are no cheap goods in the heavenly market.

Our redemption cost all that God had to give, and everything worth having is expensive.

Hard places are the very school of faith and character, and if we are to rise over mere human strength and prove the power of life divine in these mortal bodies, it must be through a process of conflict that may well be called the birth travail of a new life. 

It is the old figure of the bush that burned, but was not consumed, or of the Vision in the house of the Interpreter of the flame that would not expire, notwithstanding the fact that the demon ceaselessly poured water on it, because in the background stood an angel ever pouring oil and keeping the flame aglow.

No, dear suffering child of God, you cannot fail if only you dare to believe, to stand fast and refuse to be overcome.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

March Forward

Speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward (Exod. 14:15). 

Imagine, O child of God, if you can, that triumphal march! The excited children restrained from heights of wonder by the perpetual hush of their parents;

The most uncontrollable excitement of the women as they found themselves suddenly saved from a fate worse than death; 

While the men followed or accompanied them ashamed or confounded that they had ever mistrusted God or murmured against Moses;

And as you see those mighty walls of water piled by the outstretched hand of the Eternal, in response to the faith of a single man, learn what God will do for His own.

Dread not any result of implicit obedience to His command; fear not the angry waters which, in their proud insolence, forbid your progress. 

Above the voices of many waters, the mighty breakers of the sea, "the Lord sitteth King for ever."

A storm is only as the outskirts of His robe, the symptom of His advent, the environment of His presence.

Dare to trust Him; dare to follow Him! And discover that the very forces which barred your progress and threatened your life, at His bidding become the materials of which an avenue is made to liberty. 

~F. B. Meyer~

Have you come to the Red Sea place in your life, Where, in spite of all you can do, There is no way out, there is no way back, There is no other way but through?

Then wait on the Lord with a trust serene Till the night of your fear is gone; He will send the wind, He will heap the floods, When He says to your soul, "Go on."

And His hand will lead you through-clear through--Ere the watery walls roll down, No foe can reach you, no wave can touch, No mightiest sea can drown; 

The tossing billows may rear their crests, Their foam at your feet may break, But over their bed you shall walk dry shod In the path that your Lord will make.

In the morning watch, 'beneath the lifted cloud, You shall see but the Lord alone, When He leads you on from the place of the sea To a land that you have not known; 

And your fears shall pass as your foes have passed, You shall be no more afraid; You shall sing His praise in a better place, A place that His hand has made

~Annie Johnson Flint~