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

Thursday, July 28, 2016

The Path To Blessing

Deu 1:36  Save Caleb the son of Jephunneh; he shall see it, and to him will I give the land that he hath trodden upon, and to his children, because he hath wholly followed the LORD.

Every hard duty that lies in your path, that you would rather not do, that it will cost you pain and struggle or sore effort to do, has a blessing in it. Not to do it, at whatever cost, is to miss the blessing.

Every hard piece of road on which you see the Master's shoe-prints and along which He bids you follow Him, surely leads to blessing, which you cannot get if you cannot go over the steep, thorny path.

Every point of battle to which you come, where you must draw your sword and fight the enemy, has a possible victory which will prove a rich blessing to your life.

Every heavy load that you are called to lift hides in itself some strange secret of strength.

~J. R. Miller~

I cannot do it alone; The waves run fast and high, And the fogs close all around,

The light goes out in the sky; But I know that we two Shall win in the end, Jesus and I.

Coward and wayward and weak, I change with the changing sky; Today so eager and bright, Tomorrow too weak to try; But He never gives in, So we two shall win, Jesus and I.

I could not guide it myself, My boat on life's wild sea; There's One who sits by my side, Who pulls and steers with me.

And I know that we two Shall safe enter port, Jesus and I.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

So Foul A Hag

There are very many who lie in wait to deceive, corrupt, and poison your minds with God-dishonoring, Christ-denying, conscience-wasting, and soul-damning opinions, principles, and blasphemies.

I have read of one who boasted and gloried in this, that he had spent thirty years in corrupting and poisoning of youth.

Doubtless, many wretches, many monsters there are among us, who make it their business, their glory, their delude and draw people to those dangerous errors and blasphemies which lead to destruction.

Error and folly, says one very well, are the knots of Satan wherewith he ties children to the stake to be burned in hell.

There is a truth in what the tragedian said long since, "poison is commonly drunk out of a cup of gold."

So is an error soonest taken into the judgment and conscience, from people of the fairest carriage and smoothest conversations.

Error is so foul a hag, that if it should come in its own shape, a man would loathe it, and fly from it as from hell.

If Jezebel had not painted her face, she would not have gotten so many young doating adulterers to have followed her to their own ruin.

Ah! young men, young men...the blessing of the Lord upon your serious and diligent perusal of this treatise may be a happy means to preserve you from being ensnared and deluded by those monsters "who compass sea and land to make proselytes for hell!"

~Thomas Brooks~

Sunday, July 24, 2016

What Idolatry Is

Idolatry is all that is not God as the basis or object of man's life.

That is tremendously comprehensive. We think of idolatry, of course, in terms of heathen idols. 

We might perhaps bring it into a closer realm, where people clearly put things in the place of God but oh! it goes much deeper than that, and, in the Scriptures, idolatry is never regarded as merely negative or passive.

There idolatry is always seen to be an active thing, inasmuch as it is the work of an intelligence which is opposed to God; and that Satanic intelligence is always making it its first object and aim, persistently, continuously, and by every means, to get something into the place of the Lord personally.

You see, it is possible to have the things of the Lord in the place of the Lord Himself; and that is idolatry in principle.

Yes, it may be the things of Jehovah not other gods.

In place of the Lord, Who is the object of man's life, His things may be given precedence, and in principle that is idolatry, and the Cross is ever being used by the Holy Spirit to strike at everything, no matter what it is, that comes to occupy the place of the Lord Himself, the place that the Lord Himself should occupy.

Idolatry is always religious, and it may be the Christian religion as well as any other religion that is marked by idolatry.

I am saying some strong things, but there is cause.

You see, idolatry exists in principle whenever or wherever anything, even good in itself, becomes an object in itself rather than God, the Lord Himself.

There are many things which are not only harmless but good in themselves, which have, nevertheless, been allowed to take the place of the Lord Himself, and good things can therefore embody the principle of idolatry in the one in whom the devotion is found.

Touch some Christians, or Christian institutions, and let the touch be even in relation to something more of the Lord Himself, and you will find an uprising of jealous regard for the institution which utterly blinds to that possibility of an extra measure of the Lord Himself.

You can be so devoted to a denomination, a missionary society, a piece of Christian work, that there is no room for any extra measure of the Lord.

The thing itself has become the end, the object for which you live, and when the Lord wants to get you moved on into something more of Himself, the obstacle is that good Christian work, association, institution, tradition, connection.

Yes, and that is idolatry in principle, and we see from history how the Lord again and again has had to smite with smashing blows things which in themselves were good, in order to save His people unto Himself personally.

Even things which He gave at one time, have had to be taken away or shattered because the gift has become the end, the object.

That is what is happening: and a very necessary thing it is too.

The Lord is not protecting good things today. If those have become something to which men have become devoted, with which they have become bound up, He is allowing them to be broken and destroyed.

~T. Austin Sparks~

Friday, July 22, 2016


Psalm 93:1  The LORD reigneth, he is clothed with majesty; the LORD is clothed with strength, wherewith he hath girded himself: the world also is stablished, that it cannot be moved.
No rainbow of promise in the "dark and cloudy day" shines more radiantly than this. God, my God, the God who gave Jesus...orders all events, and overrules all for my good!

When I, says He, "send clouds over the earth." He has no wish to conceal the hand which shadows for a time earth's brightest prospects.

It is He alike who "brings the cloud," who brings us into it, and in mercy leads us through it!

His kingdom rules over all. "The lot is cast into the lap...but the whole disposing thereof is of the Lord." 

He puts the burden on, and keeps it on - and at His own time will remove it!

Beware of brooding over second causes. It is the worst form of atheism!

When our most fondly cherished gourds are smitten; our fairest flowers lie withered in our bosom; this is the silencer of all reflections: "The Lord prepared the worm!"

When the temple of the soul is smitten with lightning, and its pillars rent: "The Lord is in His holy temple!"

Accident, chance, fate, destiny have no place in the Christian's creed.

He is no unpiloted vessel left to the mercy of the storm. "The voice of the Lord is upon the waters!" 

There is but one explanation of all that befalls him: "I will be silent, I will not open my mouth, because You are the One who has done this!"

Death seems to the human spectator, the most capricious and severe of all events. But not so!

The keys of Death and Hell are in the hands of this same reigning God!

Look at the parable of the fig-tree. Its prolonged existence, or its doom as a cumberer, forms matter of conversation in Heaven; the axe cannot be laid at its root until God gives the warrant!

How much more will this be the case regarding every "Tree of Righteousness, the planting of the Lord?"

It will be watched over by Him, "Lest anyone hurt it."

Every trembling fiber He will care for; and if made early to succumb to the inevitable stroke, "Who does not know...that in all these things, that the hand of the Lord has wrought this."

Be it mine to merge my own will in His; not to cavil at His ways, or to seek to have one jot or tittle of His will altered; but to lie passive in His hands;

To take the bitter as well as the sweet, knowing that the bitter cup is mingled by One who loves me too well to add one bitter ingredient that might have been spared!

Who can wonder that the sweet Psalmist of Israel should seek, as he sees it spanning the lower heavens, to fix the arrested gaze of a whole world on the softened tints of this Rainbow of Comfort, "The Lord reigns let the earth rejoice!" 

~John Macduff~

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Achieving The Victory

2Co 4:17  For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;  
"Is achieving for us," mark. The question is repeatedly asked...Why is the life of man drenched with so much blood, and blistered with so many tears? 

The answer is to be found in the word "achieving"; these things are achieving for us something precious. 

They are teaching us not only the way to victory, but better still the laws of victory.

There is a compensation in every sorrow, and the sorrow is working out the compensation.

It is the cry of the dear old hymn: "Nearer my God to Thee, nearer to Thee, E'en tho' it be a cross that raiseth me."

Joy sometimes needs pain to give it birth.

Fanny Crosby could never have written her beautiful hymn, "I shall see Him face to face," were it not for the fact that she had never looked upon the green fields nor the evening sunset nor the kindly twinkle in her mother's eye.

It was the loss of her own vision that helped her to gain her remarkable spiritual discernment.

It is the tree that suffers that is capable of polish.

When the woodman wants some curved lines of beauty in the grain he cuts down some maple that has been gashed by the axe and twisted by the storm. In this way he secures the knots and the hardness that take the gloss.

It is comforting to know that sorrow tarries only for the night; it takes its leave in the morning.

A thunderstorm is very brief when put alongside the long summer day. "Weeping may endure for the night but joy cometh in the morning."

~Songs in the Night~

There is a peace that cometh after sorrow, Of hope surrendered, not of hope fulfilled;

A peace that looketh not upon tomorrow, But calmly on a tempest that it stilled.

A peace that lives not now in joy's excesses, Nor in the happy life of love secure; But in the unerring strength the heart possesses, Of conflicts won while learning to endure.

A peace there is, in sacrifice secluded, A life subdued, from will and passion free, 'Tis not the peace that over Eden brooded, But that which triumphed in Gethsemane."

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Who Is Leading?

Jer 10:23  O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.

Psa 27:11  Teach me thy way, O LORD, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.

Many people want to direct God, instead of resigning themselves to be directed by Him; to show Him a way, instead of passively following where He leads.

~Madame Guyon~

I said: "Let me walk in the field"; God said: 'Nay, walk in the town";  I said: "There are no flowers there"; He said: "No flowers, but a crown."

I said: "But the sky is black, There is nothing but noise and din"; But He wept as He sent me back, "There is more," He said, "there is sin.

I said: "But the air is thick, And fogs are veiling the sun"; He answered: "Yet souls are sick, And souls in the dark undone."

I said: "I shall miss the light, And friends will miss me, they say"; He answered me, "Choose tonight, If I am to miss you, or they."

I pleaded for time to be given; He said: "Is it hard to decide?  It will not seem hard in Heaven To have, followed the steps of your Guide."

I cast one look at the fields,  Then set my face to the town; He said: "My child, do you yield? Will you leave the flowers for the crown?"

Then into His hand went mine, And into my heart came He; And I walk in a light Divine, The path I had feared to see.

~George MacDonald~

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Reaching Perfection

Heb 2:10  For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.

Steel is iron plus fire. Soil is rock, plus heat, or glacier crushing. Linen is flax plus the bath that cleans, the comb that separates, and the flail that pounds, and the shuttle that weaves.

Human character must have a plus attached to it. The world does not forget great characters.

But great characters are not made of luxuries, they are made by suffering.
I heard of a mother who brought into her home as a companion to her own son, a crippled boy who was also a hunchback.

She had warned her boy to be very careful in his relations to him, and not to touch the sensitive part of his life but go right on playing with him as if he were an ordinary boy.

She listened to her son as they were playing; and after a few minutes he said to his companion: "Do you know what you have got on your back?"

The little hunchback was embarrassed, and he hesitated a moment. The boy said: "It is the box in which your wings are; and some day God is going to cut it open, and then you will fly away and be an angel."
Some day, God is going to reveal the fact to every Christian, that the very principles they now rebel against, have been the instruments which He used in perfecting their characters and moulding them into perfection, polished stones for His great building yonder.

~Cortland Myers~

Suffering is a wonderful fertilizer to the roots of character.

~Austin Phelps~
By the thorn road and no other is the mount of vision won.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

No Man Can Serve Two Masters.

Mat 6:24  No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

Mark Anthony yoked two lions to his chariot; but there are two lions no man has ever yoked together...the lion of the tribe of Judah, and the lion of the pit.
These can never go together.

Two opinions you may hold in politics, perhaps, but then you will be despised by everyone, unless you are of one opinion or the other, and act as an independent man.

But two opinions in the matter of soul-religion you cannot hold. 

If God be God, serve him, and do it thoroughly; but if this world is God, serve it, and make no profession of religion.

If you are a worldling, and think the things of the world are the best, serve them; devote yourself to them, do not be kept back by conscience; ignore your conscience, and run into sin.

But remember, if the Lord is your God, you cannot have Baal too; you must have one thing or the other.

No man can serve two masters.

If God is served, he will be a master; and if the devil be served, he will not be long before he will be a master;

And "you cannot serve two masters."

Oh! Be wise, and do not think that the two can be mingled together.

~Charles Spurgeon~

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Wait The Appointed Time

Hab 2:3 For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Turning To God From Idols

Ye turned unto God from idols, to serve a living and true God. 

That is the first stage of the Christian life. Now, although they were pagans formerly, in a pagan world with all its system of idol worship, and you might think that it is not quite right and hardly fair to compare people of a ‘Christian’ country with those pagans and to class them all together...

I want to point out that in principle and in fact the classing of all unsaved people with those pagans is quite right. 

Ye turned unto God from idols to serve or “to worship”, (for that is what the word here means) “a living and true God”.

Now, the principle here, a principle which has many forms in many different times and ages and parts of the world, is just the same.

These people had been giving the “worthship”, (for that is the meaning of worship), of their lives to other objects than God. 

Who is getting the worth-ship of your life...God, or...whatever else it might be?

If you are not giving it to God, then you are giving it somewhere else, to something else, and that is idolatry. 

So the first stage of a true Christian life is this: the realization and recognition that God is worth your giving everything to Him.

He is worthy of having the worth-ship of your life, of having laid at His feet all that you have and are.
Now, when Paul and his companions (you notice he speaks in the plural, “we give thanks”) came to these people, he set forth in the first place the worthiness of God to have their lives, and to have them and their all; 

And as he set forth the true and living God, they perhaps suddenly came to realize...“Oh, how different from what we have been doing!

How unworthy has been the way that we have been going in comparison with this!

It is the seeing of the worthiness of God in Christ.

We sometimes sing, as we seek to emphasize and reiterate the all-captivating worthiness of the Lord Jesus –Marvel not that Christ in glory All my inmost heart hath won.”
That is where it begins.

Anything less than that, anything other than that as a beginning will find us out sooner or later.

Here is One who, by reason of His self-manifestation and of the great work that He has done for our redemption and salvation, is worthy to have everything that we count worthwhile in life. 

That is very fundamental.

~T. Austin Sparks~

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Leave It To GOD

Psalm 37:6  And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday.

Whatever it is that presses thee, go tell the Father; put the whole matter over into His hand, and so shalt thou be freed from that dividing, perplexing care that the world is full of.

When thou art either to do or suffer anything, when thou art about any purpose or business, go tell God of it, and acquaint Him with it;

Yes, burden Him with it, and thou hast done for matter of caring; no more care, but quiet, sweet, diligence in thy duty, and dependence on Him for the carriage of thy matters.

Roll thy cares, and thyself with them, as one burden, all on thy God.

~R. Leighton~

Build a little fence of trust Around today; Fill the space with loving work And therein stay. 

Look not through the sheltering bars Upon tomorrow; God will help thee bear what comes Of joy or sorrow.

~Mary Butts~

We shall find it impossible to commit our way unto the Lord, unless it be a way that He approves.

It is only by faith that a man can commit his way unto the Lord;

If there be the slightest doubt in the heart that "our way" is not a good one, faith will refuse to have anything to do with it.

This committing of our way must be a continuous, not a single act.

However extraordinary and unexpected may seem to be His guidance, however near the precipice He may take you, you are not to snatch the guiding reins out of His hands.

Are we willing to have all our ways submitted to God, for Him to pronounce judgment on them? 

There is nothing a Christian needs to be more scrutinizing about than about his confirmed habits and views.

He is too apt to take for granted the Divine approbation of them.

Why are some Christians so anxious, so fearful?

Evidently because they have not left their way with the Lord. They took it to Him, but brought it away with them again.