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"My words are Spirit and Life, and not to be weighed by the understanding of man. They are not to be drawn forth for vain approbation, but to be heard in silence, and to be received with all humility and great affection."
Thomas à Kempis
Move Me with Your Message
Move me with your message once again
It's been so long since my heart burned within
Take me back once more to Calvary
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If ever I loved thee,
My Jesus tis now."
by William R. Featherston
(Composed in 1862 at the age of 16)
Englands Great Pioneers of the Faith
The Old Book and the Old Faith
The old Book and the old faith
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The best way for anyone to know how much he ought to aspire after holiness is to consider not how much will make his present life easy, but to ask himself how much he thinks will make him easy at the hour of death.
"We shall find, when we reach the end of life, that all which God has done, however dark and mysterious it may have appeared at the time, was so connected with our good as to make it a proper subject of praise and thanksgiving."
"Cowards never won heaven. Do not claim that you are begotten of God and have His royal blood running in your veins unless you can prove your lineage by this heroic spirit: to dare to be holy in spite of men and devils." William Gurnall
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C. H. Spurgeon
"Remember that it is not hasty reading, but serious meditation on holy and heavenly truths, which makes them prove sweet and profitable to the soul.
It is not he who reads most, but he who meditates most, who will prove to be the choicest, sweetest, wisest, and strongest Christian."
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Be very happy when it hurts you.
Be very worried when it doesn't.
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|The Old Time Gospel: "Joshua and the End Time Christian" Editor's Notes
He that eateth my flesh,
and drinketh my blood,
dwelleth in me,
and I in him.
Joshua and the End Time Christian
"And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries? And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant? And the captain of the LORD's host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so." Joshua 5:13-15
Joshua, the great general of God's people and one of the greatest men ever recorded in history stands as an example for God's people to follow in these last days.
Observe the great courage Joshua had when standing before the enemies of God, to be matched only by his great humility when bowing before his God. Both of these qualities are desperately needed by God's people today.
No doubt the man Joshua lifted his eyes to see was a formidable man to behold both in might and glory, yet without hesitation; Joshua approaches the man with a courage few men have ever known, ready to fight this man whose sword has already been drawn, or to embrace him as an allied friend.
Remembering back to the commandment God gave Joshua, The Lord said, "Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law... turn not from it to the right hand or to the left... This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest."
Because Joshua was obedient to the heavenly calling, he did not fear when confronting the man by Jericho. He stood upon the promises of God with a pure heart. If this man were an enemy, Joshua knew God was with him to defeat this formidable foe.
When Joshua found the man to be Captain of the Host of the Lord, he in all his greatness as the general and leader of Israel, bowed down low in reverence to the Lord his God and asked for His guidance. Joshua found great favor with God.
Like Joshua, the Church today must walk in complete obedience to the heavenly calling so that when confronting the enemies of God, she can stand with the assurance that God will fight with her. The gauge for determining the enemies of God is nothing less than the Truth of God! This means the Church must walk with great discernment.
The Word of God is our measure for Truth, every word spoken must line up with Truth, and every man who claims to fight on God's side must line up with Truth. We must with great courage approach every man in the name of Truth and ask, "Art thou for us, or for our adversaries?"
Every lie must be defeated by Truth, every liar must be found out by Truth. Every enemy of God will be defeated by the same courage Joshua had; remember however the truth that Joshua himself walked in. Without obedience to the Truth, you are no match for the enemies of God.
Lastly, forget not the humility Joshua walked in. His life was given over to the Lord completely. His fight was God's fight. He was a true servant of God. It was not his ministry, his project, his plans, his people. He played a role in God's plans with God's people. Joshua knew he was nothing more than an instrument in God's hands. The Church today would do well to follow this example of humility. No matter your position in the Body of Christ, you are a part of the whole, with Christ alone as the Head.
|Devotional Studies: "Are We Sanctified?" by J. C. Ryle
Are We Sanctified? Point #12
by J. C. Ryle
Point #12. "Sanctification, in the last place, is absolutely necessary, in order to train and prepare us for heaven. Most men hope to go to heaven when they die; but few, it may be feared, take the trouble to consider whether they would enjoy heaven if they got there. Heaven is essentially a holy place; its inhabitants are all holy; its occupations are all holy. To be really happy in heaven, it is clear and plain that we must be somewhat trained and made ready for heaven while we are on earth. The notion of a purgatory after death, which shall turn sinners into saints, is a lying invention of man, and is nowhere taught in the Bible. We must be saints before we die, if we are to be saints afterwards in glory. The favorite idea of many, that dying men need nothing except absolution and forgiveness of sins to fit them for their great change, is a profound delusion.
We need the work of the Holy Spirit as well as the work of Christ; we need renewal of heart as well as the atoning blood; we need to be sanctified as well as to be justified. It is common to hear people saying on their death beds, "I only want the Lord to forgive me my sins, and take me to rest." But those who say such things forget that the rest of heaven would be utterly useless if we had no heart to enjoy it. What could an unsanctified man do in heaven, if by any chance he got there? Let that question be fairly looked in the face, and fairly answered. No man can possibly be happy in a place where he is not in his element, and where all around him is not congenial to his tastes, habits, and character. When an eagle is happy in an iron cage, when a sheep is happy in the water, when an owl is happy in the blaze of noonday sun, when a fish is happy on the dry land, then, and not till then, will I admit that the unsanctified man could be happy in heaven. " — J.C. Ryle
|Classic Sermon: "The Doom of those who Neglect the Great Salvation" by Charles Finney
"The Doom of those who Neglect the Great Salvation"
by Charles Finney
"How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation?" Hebrews 2:3
Escape what? What can Universalists say to such a question as this? They whose first doctrine proclaims that there can be no danger, what will they say to this solemn question and its startling assumption of peril from which there shall be no escape? How shall we escape? says the inspired author, as if he would imply most strongly that there can be no escape to those who neglect this great salvation. Salvation; the very term imports safety or deliverance from great impending evil. If there be no such evil, there is then no meaning to this term, no real salvation.
The writer is speaking of the salvation published in the gospel; and the idea that immediately suggested its greatness is the greatness of its author and revealer. It is because Jesus Christ by whom this gospel came is so great, compared with angels, that the writer conceives of this salvation as pre-eminently great and glorious.
This second chapter is closely connected with the first. The train of thought reverts to the fact that God had anciently spoken to their fathers by the prophets; but in these last days, by his Son, the very brightness of his own glory, the Upholder of all things, shown all through the Bible to be higher than angels, through whose ministrations also, the divine word had sometimes come to mortals. Now then, since the word so revealed by angels, carried with it the sternest authority, and every sort of transgression and disobedience received a just recompense of reward, how shall men escape who neglect a salvation so great that even God's glorious Son is sent from heaven to earth to reveal it! He, the Exalted Son, came down to create and reveal this salvation; he wrought it out in death, confirming his divine mission while he lived, by miracles; must it not, then be a matter of supreme importance?
Yet the Bible has not left us to infer its greatness from the glory of its Author alone; it presents to us the greatness of this salvation in many other points of view. It is great in its very nature. It is salvation from death in sin.
|Preach the Word: "Christ Exalted" by Charles H. Spurgeon
C. H. Spurgeon
by Charles H. Spurgeon
"This man, after he had offered on sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool." Hebrews 10:12-13
AT THE LORD'S table we wish to have no subject for contemplation but our blessed Lord Jesus Christ, and we have been wont generally to consider him as the crucified One, "the Man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief," while we have had before us the emblems of his broken body, and of his blood shed for many for the remission of sins; but I am not quite sure that the crucified Savior is the only appropriate theme, although, perhaps, the most so. It is well to remember how our Savior left us, by what road he traveled through the shadows of death; but I think it is quite as well to recollect what he is doing while he is away from us, to remember the high glories to which the crucified Savior has attained; and it is, perhaps, as much calculated to cheer our spirits to behold him on his throne as to consider him on his cross.
We have seen him one his cross, in some sense; that is to say, the eyes of men on earth did see the crucified Savior; but we have no idea of what his glories are above; they surpass our highest thought. Yet faith can see the Savior exalted on his throne, and surely there is no subject that can keep our expectations alive, or cheer our drooping faith better than to consider, that while our Savior is absent, he is absent on his throne, and that when he has left his Church to sorrow for him, he has not left us comfortless, he has promised to come to us, that while he tarries he is reigning, and that while he is absent he is sitting high on his father's throne.
The Apostle shews here the superiority of Christ's sacrifice over that of every other priest. "Every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins; but this man," or priest, for the word "man" is not in the original "after he had offered one sacrifice for sins," had finished his work, and for ever, he "sat down." You see the superiority of Christ's sacrifice rests in this, that the priest offered continually, and after he had slaughtered one lamb, another was needed; after one scape-goat was driven into the wilderness, a scape-goat was needed the next year, "but this man, when he had offered only one sacrifice for sins," did what thousands of scape-goats never did, and what hundreds of thousands of lambs never could effect. He perfected our salvation, and worked out an entire atonement for the sins of all his chosen ones.
We shall notice, in the first place, this morning, the completeness of the Savior's work of atonement, he has done it: we shall gather that from the context: secondly, the glory which the Savior has assumed; and thirdly, the triumph which he expects. We shall dwell very briefly on each point, and endeavor to pack our thoughts as closely together as we can.
"Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season;
reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine." — II Timothy 4:2
|Pen of the Puritans: "Holy Violence" by Thomas Watson
Read about the Puritan's
by Thomas Watson
"The kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force." Matthew 11:12
The exercises of the worship of God are contrary to nature; therefore, there must be a provoking of ourselves to them. The movement of the soul toward sin is natural, but its movement toward heaven is violent. The stone moves easily to the center. It has an innate propensity downward, but to draw up a millstone into the air is done by violence because it is against nature. So to lift up the heart to heaven in duty is done by violence and we must provoke ourselves to it.
What is it to provoke ourselves to duty? It is to awaken ourselves and shake off spiritual slothfulness. Let us then examine whether we put forth this holy violence for heaven. Do we set time apart to call ourselves to account and to try our evidences for heaven? "My spirit made diligent search" (Ps. 77:6). Do we take our hearts, as a watch, all in pieces to see what is amiss and to mend it? Are we curiously inquisitive into the state of our souls? Are we afraid of artificial grace, as we are of artificial happiness? Do we use violence in prayer?
Is there fire in our sacrifice? Is the wind of the Spirit filling our sails, causing unutterable groans (Rom. 8:26)? Do we pray in the morning as if we were to die at night? Do we thirst for the living God? Are our souls enlarged with holy desires? "There is none upon earth that I desire beside Thee" (Psalm 73:25). Do we desire holiness as well as heaven? Do we desire as much to look like Christ as to live with Christ? Is our desire constant? Is this spiritual pulse ever beating?
Are we skilled in self-denial? Can we deny our ease, our aims, our interests? Can we cross our own will to fulfill God's? Can we behead our beloved sin? To pluck out the right eye requires violence. (Matthew 18:9). Are we lovers of God? It is not how much we do, but how much we love. Does love command the castle of our hearts? Does Christ's beauty and sweetness constrain us? (II Corinthians 5:14).
Do we love God more than we fear hell? Do we keep our spiritual watch? Do we set spies in every place, watching our thoughts, our eyes, our tongues? When we, have prayed against sin, do we watch against temptation? Do we press after further degrees of sanctity? "Reaching forth unto those things which are before" (Phil. 3:13). A good Christian is a wonder; he is the most contented yet the least satisfied. He is contented with a little of the world, but not satisfied with a little grace.
How violent Christ was about our salvation! He was in agony; He "continued all night in prayer" (Luke 6:12). He wept, He fasted, He died a violent death; He rose violently out of the grave. Was Christ so violent for our salvation, and does it not become us to be violent who are so intimately concerned in it? Christ's violence was not only satisfactory, but exemplary. It was not only to appease God, but to teach us. Christ was violent in dying to teach us to be violent in believing.
|Manna for the Soul: "The Mind of Christ" by Robert Murray McCheyne
The Mind of Christ
by Robert Murray McCheyne
"But we have the mind of Christ" I Corinthians 2:16
Now, every believer has the mind of Christ formed in him. He thinks as Christ does: "This is the spirit of a sound mind" (II Timothy 1:7). This is being of the same mind in the Lord. I do not mean that a believer has the same all-seeing mind, the same infallible judgment concerning everything, as Christ has; but up to his fight he sees things as Christ does.
He sees sin as Christ does. Christ sees sin to be evil and bitter. He sees it to be filthy and abominable, its pleasures all a delusion. He sees it to be awfully dangerous. He sees the inseparable connection between sin and suffering. So does a believer.
He sees the gospel as Christ does. Christ sees amazing glory in the gospel, the way of salvation which He Himself has wrought out. It appears a most complete salvation to Him, most free, most glorifying to God and happy for man. So does the believer.
He sees the world as Christ does. Christ knows what is in man. He looked on this world as vanity compared with the smile of His Father. Its riches, its honours, its pleasures, appeared not worth a sigh. He saw it passing away. So does the believer.
He sees time as Christ did. I must work the work of Him that sent Me while it is day; the night cometh", "I come quickly." So does a believer look at time.
He sees eternity as Christ does. Christ looked at everything in the light of eternity "In my Father's house are many mansions." Everything is valuable in Christ's eyes, only as it bears on eternity. So with believers.
|Bible Verse: "...the life was the light of men." John 1:4
"In him was life; and the life was the light of men." John 1:4
In him was life,... The Persic version reads in the plural number, "lives". There was life in the word with respect to himself; a divine life, the same with the life of the Father and of the Spirit; and is in him, not by gift, nor by derivation or communication; but originally, and independently, and from all eternity: indeed he lived before his incarnation as Mediator, and Redeemer. Job knew him in his time, as his living Redeemer; but this regards him as the word and living God, and distinguishes him from the written word, and shows that he is not a mere idea in the divine mind, but a truly divine person: and there was life in Christ the word, with respect to others; the fountain of natural life is in him, he is the efficient cause, and preserver of it; whether vegetative, animal, or rational; and proves him to be truly God, and that he existed before his incarnation; since creatures, who have received such a life from him, did: and spiritual life was also in him; all his elect are dead in trespasses and sins, and cannot quicken themselves. Christ has procured life for them, and gives it to them, and implants it in them; a life of sanctification is from him; and a life of justification is upon him, and of faith is by him; all the comforts of a spiritual life, and all things appertaining to it, are from him, and he maintains, and preserves it. Eternal life is in him, and with him; not the purpose of it only, nor the promise of it barely, but the gift of it itself; which was granted in consequence of his asking it, and which he had by way of stipulation; and hence has a right and power to bestow it: now, this being in him proves him to be the true God, and shows us where life is to be had, and the safety and security of it:
and the life was the light of men; the life which was in, and by the word, was, with respect to men, a life of light, or a life attended with light: by which is meant, not a mere visive faculty, receptive of the sun's light, but rational knowledge and understanding; for when Christ, the word, breathed into man the breath of life, and he became a living soul, he filled him with rational light and knowledge. Adam had a knowledge of God; of his being, and perfections; of the persons in the Trinity; of his relation to God, dependence on him, and obligation to him; of his mind and will; and knew what it was to have communion with him. He knew much of himself, and of all the creatures; this knowledge was natural and perfect in its kind, but loseable; and different from that which saints now have of God, through Christ, the Mediator; and since this natural light was from Christ, the word, as a Creator, he must be the eternal God. The Socinians are not willing to allow this sense, but say that Christ is the light of men, by preaching the heavenly doctrine, and by the example of his holy life; but hereby he did not enlighten every man that cometh into the world; the greatest part of men, before the preaching, and example of Christ, sat in darkness; and the greatest part of the Jews remained in darkness, notwithstanding his preaching, and example; and the patriarchs that were enlightened under the former dispensation, were not enlightened this way: it will be owned, that all spiritual and supernatural light, which any of the sons of men have had, since the fall, was from Christ, from whom they had their spiritual life; even all spiritual light in conversion, and all after degrees of light; through him they enjoyed the light of God's countenance, and had the light of joy and gladness here, and of glory hereafter.
— John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
|The Gospel Libray: "Man – The Dwelling Place of God" by A. W. Tozer
A. W. Tozer
Read the whole Book
Man – The Dwelling Place of God
by A. W. Tozer
Chapter 10 The Old Cross and the New
ALL UNANNOUNCED AND MOSTLY UNDETECTED there has come in modern times a new cross into popular evangelical circles. It is like the old cross, but different: the likenesses are superficial; the differences, fundamental.
From this new cross has sprung a new philosophy of the Christian life, and from that new philosophy has come a new evangelical technique-a new type of meeting and a new kind of preaching. This new evangelism employs the same language as the old, but its content is not the same and its emphasis not as before.
The old cross would have no truck with the world. For Adam's proud flesh it meant the end of the journey. It carried into effect the sentence imposed by the law of Sinai. The new cross is not opposed to the human race; rather, it is a friendly pal and, if understood aright, it is the source of oceans of good clean fun and innocent enjoyment. It lets Adam live without interference. His life motivation is unchanged; he still lives for his own pleasure, only now he takes delight in singing choruses and watching religious movies instead of singing bawdy songs and drinking hard liquor. The accent is still on enjoyment, though the fun is now on a higher plane morally if not intellectually.
The new cross encourages a new and entirely different evangelistic approach. The evangelist does not demand abnegation of the old life before a new life can be received. He preaches not contrasts but similarities. He seeks to key into public interest by showing that Christianity makes no unpleasant demands; rather, it offers the same thing the world does, only on a higher level. Whatever the sin-mad world happens to be clamoring after at the moment is cleverly shown to be the very thing the gospel offers, only the religious product is better.
The new cross does not slay the sinner, it redirects him. It gears him into a cleaner anal jollier way of living and saves his self-respect. To the self-assertive it says, "Come and assert yourself for Christ." To the egotist it says, "Come and do your boasting in the Lord." To the thrillseeker it says, "Come and enjoy the thrill of Christian fellowship." The Christian message is slanted in the direction of the current vogue in order to make it acceptable to the public.
The philosophy back of this kind of thing may be sincere but its sincerity does not save it from being false. It is false because it is blind. It misses completely the whole meaning of the cross.
The old cross is a symbol of death. It stands for the abrupt, violent end of a human being. The man in Roman times who took up his cross and started down the road had already said good-by to his friends. He was not coming back. He was going out to have it ended. The cross made no compromise, modified nothing, spared nothing; it slew all of the man, completely and for good. It did not try to keep on good terms with its victim. It struck cruel and hard, and when it had finished its work, the man was no more.
|The School of Christ: "Learning by Revelation" by T. Austin Sparks
T. Austin Sparks
Read the whole Book
The School of Christ by T. Austin Sparks
Learning by Revelation Chapter 3
Learning by Revelation
"In the visions of God brought he me into the land of Israel, and set me down upon a very high mountain, whereon was as it were the frame of a city on the south. And he brought me thither, and, behold, there was a man, whose appearance was like the appearance of brass, with a line of flax in his hand, and a measuring reed, and he stood in the gate.
And the man said unto me, Son of man, behold with thine eyes, and hear with thine ears, and set thy heart upon all that I shall show thee, for, to the intent that I may show them unto thee, art thou brought hither: declare all that thou seest to the house of Israel" (Ezekiel 40:2-4).
"Thou, son of man, show the house to the house of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their iniquities, and let them measure the pattern. And if they be ashamed of all that they have done, make known unto them the form of the house, and the fashion thereof, and the egresses thereof, and the entrances thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the laws thereof; and write it in their sight; that they may keep the whole form thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and do them" (Ezekiel 43:10-11).
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him; and without him was not anything made that hath been made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men" (John 1:1-4).
"And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us (and we beheld his glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father), full of grace and truth" (John 1:14). "And he saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye shall see the heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man" (John 1:51).
|The Imitation of Christ: "Internal Consolation" by Thomas À Kempis
The Imitation of Christ
by Thomas À Kempis
The Imitation of Christ by Thomas À Kempis
Internal Consolation Book III
The Vain Judgments of Men
The Voice of Christ
MY CHILD, trust firmly in the Lord, and do not fear the judgment of men when conscience tells you that you are upright and innocent. For it is good and blessed to suffer such things, and they will not weigh heavily on the humble heart that trusts in God rather than in itself. Many men say many things, and therefore little faith is to be put in them.
Likewise, it is impossible to satisfy all men. Although Paul tried to please all in the Lord, and became all things to all men, yet he made little of their opinions. He labored abundantly for the edification and salvation of others, as much as lay in him and as much as he could, but he could not escape being sometimes judged and despised by others.
Therefore, he committed all to God Who knows all things, and defended himself by his patience and humility against the tongues of those who spoke unjustly or thought foolish things and lies, or made accusations against him. Sometimes, indeed, he did answer them, but only lest his silence scandalize the weak.
Who are you, then, that you should be afraid of mortal man? Today he is here, tomorrow he is not seen. Fear God and you will not be afraid of the terrors of men. What can anyone do to you by word or injury? He hurts himself rather than you, and no matter who he may be he cannot escape the judgment of God. Keep God before your eyes, therefore, and do not quarrel with peevish words.
If it seems, then, that you are worsted and that you suffer undeserved shame, do not repine over it and do not lessen your crown by impatience. Look instead to heaven, to Me, Who have power to deliver you from all disgrace and injury, and to render to everyone according to his works.
|Biography: "William Ames" (1576-1633)
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William Ames (1576-1633)
"He was known and quoted in the colonies of the New World for his theology more than Calvin and Luther combined."
William Ames was born in 1567 at Ipswich in Suffolk, that region east of Anglia where Puritanism had first "begun", and where the persecution of the crown was least effective. His father was a merchant who was sympathetic to the Puritan cause; his mother was a relative of later colonist Pilgrims of Plymouth, Massachusetts. Both his parents died, and William was taken in by his uncle, Robert Snelling of Oxford, who took William into his home, and with understanding and generosity saw to his needs and education.
Ames chose the center of Puritan learning, Cambridge University, over Oxford for his higher education. Cambridge was dominated during Elizabethan and Jacobean time by the teaching and preaching of Thomas Cartwright (1535-1603), William Perkins (1558-1602), and John Preston (1587-1628). Ames had the good providence to become close to William Perkins, and their relationship not only grew as teacher/student, but also as friends.
Ames received his A.B. degree in 1607 and was promptly invited to become a fellow (professor) of Christ's College. He was even in the running for the mastership of the college as a successor to Edmund Barwell in 1609. But higher authorities in state and established church interfered to prevent the election of such a strong nonconformist candidate. Ames refused to wear vestments, and he spoke out against the sign of the cross administered during baptism and other ceremonies. Another candidate was chosen, and in the eyes of Ames and other Puritans, the college status deteriorated. Ames withdrew his fellowship, and never returned again to English Academia.
Ames made the transition from being a fellow to taking up the pastorate, but it was not long afterward that persecution began to intensify under the reign of James I and Archbishop Bancroft. Particularly, Ames was sought after since he had translated William Bradshaw's treatise "English Puritanism" which set forth in hard terms the nonconformist views. Ames made a decision to leave England and go to Holland.
|Scripture Studies: "Psalms 91:1-16"
Time to sharpen
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Scripture Studies Psalms 91:1-16 MH Comm.
Click on the links for commentary study.
1. He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. JG Expo.
2. I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. JG Expo.
3. Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. JG Expo.
4. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. JG Expo.
5. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; JG Expo.
6. Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday. JG Expo.
7. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. JG Expo.
8. Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked. JG Expo.
9. Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation; JG Expo.
10. There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. JG Expo.
11. For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. JG Expo.
12. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone. JG Expo.
13. Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet. JG Expo.
14. Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. JG Expo.
15. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. JG Expo.
16. With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation. JG Expo.
Key: JG Expo. = John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible MH Comm. = Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible
|Think On These Things: "Much Fruit" by Andrew Murray
by Andrew Murray
Have you ever noticed the difference in the Christian life between work and fruit? A machine can do work: only life can bear fruit. A law can compel work: only love can spontaneously bring forth fruit. Work implies effort and labor: the essential idea of fruit is that it is the silent natural restful produce of our inner life. The gardener may labor to give his apple tree the digging and manuring, the watering and the pruning it needs; he can do nothing to produce the apple: "The fruit of the Spirit is love, peace, joy." The healthy life bears much fruit.
The connection between work and fruit is perhaps best seen in the expression, "fruitful in every good work." (Colossians 1.10). It is only when good works come as the fruit of the indwelling Spirit that they are acceptable to God. Under the compulsion of law and conscience, or the influence of inclination and zeal, men may be most diligent in good works, and yet find that they have but little spiritual result. There can be no reason but this, their works are man's effort, instead of being the fruit of the Spirit, the restful, natural outcome of the Spirit's operation within us.
"Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things." — Philippians 4:8
|A Word in Season: "Inward Sins" by A. W. Tozer
Pillars of Truth
that you can stand on.
"...Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity." II Timothy 2:19
Chrysotom once preached a great sermon to show that nothing can harm a Christian who does not harm himself. Over the humble and obedient soul the devil has no power. He can harm us only when we, by unspiritual and unChristlike ways, play into his hands. And we play into his hands whenever and as long as we harbor unjudged and uncleaned evil within us.
Dispositional sins are fully as injurious to the Christian cause as the most overt acts of wickedness. These sins are as many as the various facets of human nature. Just so there may be no misunderstanding, let us list a few of them: sensitiveness, irritability, churlishness, fault-finding, peevishness, temper, resentfulness, cruelty, uncharitable attitudes; and of course there are many more...
Deliverance from inward sins would seem to be a spiritual necessity. In the face of the havoc wrought by dispositional sins among religious people, we do not see how sincere men can deny that necessity. Unsaintly saints are the tragedy of Christianity. People of the world usually must pass through the circle of disciples to reach Christ; and if they find those disciples severe and sharp-tongued, they can hardly be blamed if they sigh and turn away from Him.
All this is more than a theory. Unholy tempers among professed saints constitutes a plague and a pestilence. The low state of religion in our day is largely due to the lack of public confidence in religious people. It is time we Christians stop trying to excuse our unChristlike dispositions, and frankly admit our failure to live as we should.
Wesley said that we will not injure the cause of holiness by admitting our sins, but that we are sure to do so by denying them. There is a power in Christ that can enable the worst of us to live lives of purity and love. We have but to seek it and to lay hold on it in faith. God will not disappoint us.
"The Lord GOD hath given me the tongue of the learned,
that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary..." Isaiah 50:4
|Old Time Hymns: "Abide with Me" by Lyte & Monk
Abide with Me
Words by Henry F. Lyte, 1793-1847
Music by W.H. Monk, 1823-1889
1. Abide with me; fast falls the eventide;
the darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide.
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me.
2. Swift to its close ebbs out life's little day;
earth's joys grow dim; its glories pass away;
change and decay in all around I see;
O thou who changest not, abide with me.
3. I need thy presence every passing hour.
What but thy grace can foil the tempter's power?
Who, like thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.
4. I fear no foe, with thee at hand to bless;
ills have no weight, and tears not bitterness.
Where is death's sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if thou abide with me.
5. Hold thou thy cross before my closing eyes;
shine through the gloom and point me to the skies.
Heaven's morning breaks, and earth's vain shadows flee;
in life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.
"Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
"O Lord, abide with me."
|Great Quotes: "Quotes on Prayer"
More Quotes & Stories
"Prayer does not fit us for the greater work; prayer is the greater work." Oswald Chambers
"Our praying, however, needs to be pressed and pursued with an energy that never tires, a persistency which will not be denied, and a courage which never fails." E. M. Bounds
"A godly man is a praying man. As soon as grace is poured in, prayer is poured out. Prayer is the soul's traffic with Heaven; God comes down to us by His Spirit, and we go up to Him by prayer." Thomas Watson
"As a man prays, so is he." A. W. Tozer
"Satan cannot deny but that great wonders have been wrought by prayer. As the spirit of prayer goes up, so his kingdom goes down. Satan's strategems against prayer are three. First, if he can, he will keep thee from prayer. If that be not feasible, secondly, he will strive to interrupt thee in prayer. And, thirdly, if that plot takes not, he will labour to hinder the success of thy prayer." William Gurnall
"Where there is much prayer, there will be much of the Spirit; where there is much of the Spirit, there will be ever-increasing prayer." Andrew Murray
"Quit playing, start praying. Quit feasting, start fasting. Talk less with men, talk more with God. Listen less to men, listen to the words of God. Skip travel, start travail." Leonard Ravenhill
"The most fervent prayer meetings are in hell." Leonard Ravenhill
"Each time, before you intercede, be quiet first, and worship God in His glory. Think of what He can do, and how He delights to hear the prayers of His redeemed people. Think of your place and privilege in Christ, and expect great things!" Andrew Murray
"God does nothing but by prayer, and everything with it." John Wesley
"Effective prayer is prayer that attains what it seeks. It is prayer that moves God, effecting its end." Charles G. Finney
"Beware in your prayers, above everything else, of limiting God, not only by unbelief, but by fancying that you know what He can do. Expect unexpected things 'above all that we ask or think.'" Andrew Murray
"There is nothing more appalling than the wholesale way in which unthinking people plead to the Almighty the richest and most spiritual of His promises, and claim their immediate fulfillment, without themselves fulfilling one of the conditions either on which they are promised or can possibly be given." Henry Drummond
"The reason why we obtain no more in prayer is because we expect no more. God usually answers us according to our own hearts." Richard Alleine
"Have you any days of fasting and prayer? Storm the throne of grace and persevere therein, and mercy will come down." John Wesley
|The Martyrs: "Mark" The Evangelist
Fox's Book of Martyrs
Mark The Evangelist
Mark (Marcus) was the Latin surname and John the common Hebrew name of this evangelist (Acts 12:12,25; 15:37). Christians in Jerusalem gathered in the house of his mother, Mary (Acts 12:12). He was Barnabas' nephew (Acts 12:25; Colossians 4:10). Paul and Barnabas took him from Jerusalem to Antioch (Acts 12:25).
Mark traveled with Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary journey (Acts 13:5), but he left them at Perga and turned back to Jerusalem (Acts 13:13). For this reason Paul was unwilling to take him on his second missionary journey (Acts 15:36-40). A "sharp contention" arose between Paul and Barnabas about this matter and they decided to go in different directions.
Barnabas took Mark and sailed to Cyprus, while Paul chose Silas and went on his second missionary journey. Later Paul and Mark were reconciled (Philemon 1:24; II Timothy 4:11; Colossians 4:10). Mark accompanied the apostle Peter to Rome where they preached together. Peter called Mark his son (I Peter 5:13).
Mark is the author of the Gospel According to Mark, the second Gospel in the New Testament, but the earliest. He wrote his Gospel in Rome, accurately recording the testimonies of the apostle Peter and other eyewitnesses to Jesus Christ's life. According to Papias and Saint Clement of Alexandria, Mark wrote his Gospel at the request of the Roman Christians around AD 49. In his work Church History (AD 325), the history of the first three centuries of the Christian Church, in Book II, Chapter 15, The Gospel According to Mark, Eusebius of Caesarea wrote the following about the Gospel of Mark:
And thus when the divine word had made its home among them, the power of Simon was quenched and immediately destroyed, together with the man himself. And so greatly did the splendor of piety illumine the minds of Peter's hearers that they were not satisfied with hearing once only, and were not content with the unwritten teaching of the divine Gospel, but with all sorts of entreaties they besought Mark, a follower of Peter, and the one whose Gospel is extant, that he would leave them a written monument of the doctrine which had been orally communicated to them.
Nor did they cease until they had prevailed with the man, and had thus become the occasion of the written Gospel which bears the name of Mark. And they say that Peter when he had learned, through a revelation of the Spirit, of that which had been done, was pleased with the zeal of the men, and that the work obtained the sanction of his authority for the purpose of being used in the churches. Clement in the eighth book of his Hypotyposes gives this account, and with him agrees the bishop of Hierapolis named Papias.
"And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment: They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented; Of whom the world was not worthy..."
|The Word of Life: "Joe1 2:12-17" Authorized King James Version
Joe1 2:12-17 Authorized King James Version
- "Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning:
- And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.
- Who knoweth if he will return and repent, and leave a blessing behind him; even a meat offering and a drink offering unto the LORD your God?
- Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly:
- Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breasts: let the bridegroom go forth of his chamber, and the bride out of her closet.
- Let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O LORD, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the people, Where is their God?"
"All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine,
for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:"
II Timothy 3:16
"The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple."
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"When to seek God has become life and to glorify God has become self, then you have truly found God."