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Grace Gems

Discussion in 'Daily Devotionals' started by nChrist, Oct 14, 2016.

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  1. nChrist

    nChrist AKA: Tom - Saved By Grace Through Faith Supporter

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    My Father's home!

    (James Smith, "The Better Land")

    "Do not be troubled. There are many rooms in my Father's home, and I am going to prepare a place for you. When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with Me where I am!" John 14:1-3

    How familiar with Heaven--how well acquainted with that "better land" must Jesus be! He calls it "My Father's home!" Sweet view of our eternal residence!

    Dying is but 'going home!' Going home to our Father! Going to our Father's home!

    And shall we fear this? Fear it! Can we do anything other than eagerly desire it? Do we not wish to go home and see our Father? We shall not be strangers there--so many of our Christian friends have gone home before us. And even if some of our loved ones are not there--we could not possibly feel unhappy where JESUS is!

    "I am leaving the world," said Jesus, "and am going to My Father!" Such should be our language in the prospect of death. O that, with child-like simplicity, we could receive into our minds the testimony of God's Word! O that we could view death and Heaven--just as the Scriptures represent them! Where would our doubts and fears be then? What would become of our reluctance to leave the world then? Then, if we spoke of departed Christian loved ones--we would use similar language to that of Judah in reference to his younger brother Benjamin, "He is this day with our Father!" We would no longer talk of losing friends or relatives. Oh no! we should speak of them as being in our Father's home, or of being with our Father!

    My soul, I charge you in future to look to Heaven, simply as your Father's home!

    "Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal!" 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
     
  2. nChrist

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    The world's pleasures are often curses in disguise!

    (John MacDuff, "Ripples in the Twilight" 1885)

    "Jabez called on the God of Israel saying: 'Oh, that You would bless me indeed!'
    So God granted him what he requested." 1 Chronicles 4:10

    There is much apparent good not worth calling by the name. What the world speaks of as blessings are, some of them, often worthless; and many of them are undoubtedly evil and detrimental. They are counterfeits--they do not bear upon them the coinage and currency of Heaven. Satan has disguised them--stamped them as true metal--while they are base alloy!

    Let us leave our blessings, and the method of their bestowal, with the Giver of every good and perfect gift--into His hand committing our earthly all, with this prayer of intense fervor yet of simple faith, "Oh that You would bless me indeed!" I want nothing which the world calls a blessing, unless You think it proper for me. I want no shadows--no baubles. I do not ask for riches--they may be a snare to me. I do not ask for . . .
    the cup running over,
    the barns full,
    the fig-tree blossoming,
    the home-nest without the thorn.
    These might alienate me from Yourself, and bind me only closer to earth!

    I want blessings indeed. God, I am no judge of this. Whatever YOU give, will be a true blessing to me. And even if You take it away--I will strive to believe that the dark and painful dealing, is Your kindness to me also.

    Yes, we repeat, the world's pleasures are often curses in disguise--like Cleopatra's viper, which was hidden in a basket of flowers. There is often . . .
    an adder lurking in the bed of roses,
    a fly in the ointment,
    poison in the wine-cup!

    But the blessings of God are blessings bearing His own divine seal and signature. They may come . . .
    in frowning providences,
    in baffling dispensations,
    in strokes of the chastening rod.
    For the present they may seem not joyous, but grievous. But I am content to be in His hands--joyful or sorrowful, in health or in sickness, living or dying. O my Father, give Your own blessing, and I shall bow my heart in submission; for I can only hear in it accents of paternal love!
     
  3. nChrist

    nChrist AKA: Tom - Saved By Grace Through Faith Supporter

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    Salvation from Hell--or from sin?

    (Charles Spurgeon)

    "You shall call His name Jesus--for He will save His people from their sins." Matthew 1:21

    The mere professor loves a salvation from Hell.

    The true Christian loves a salvation from sin.

    Everyone desires to be saved from the bottomless pit--but only a child of God pants to be saved from every false way. We love the Gospel because it saves us . . .
    from selfishness,
    from pride,
    from lust,
    from worldliness,
    from bitterness,
    from malice,
    and from sloth.

    "Because I consider all Your precepts to be right, I hate every wrong path." Psalm 119:128
     
  4. nChrist

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    A clean path to Hell!

    (Charles Spurgeon)

    Unbelief will destroy the best of us!

    Faith will save the worst of us!

    There is a clean path to Hell--as well as a dirty one.

    You will be lost if you trust to your good works--as surely as if you trusted in your sins.

    There is a road to perdition along the 'highway of morality'--as surely as down the 'slough of vice'!

    "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us!" Titus 3:5
     
  5. nChrist

    nChrist AKA: Tom - Saved By Grace Through Faith Supporter

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    The masses demand that which will soothe them in their sins and amuse them while they journey down the Broad Road!

    (Arthur Pink, 1886-1952)

    "In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of His appearing and His kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths!" 2 Timothy 4:1-4

    That time has arrived! Church-goers today will not endure sound doctrine. Those who . . .
    preach the total depravity of man,
    insist upon the imperative necessity of the new birth,
    set forth the inflexible righteousness and holiness of God, and
    warn against the eternal and conscious torment awaiting every rejecter of Christ,
    find it almost impossible to obtain a hearing. Such preachers are regarded as puritanic pessimists, and are not wanted.

    In these degenerate times, the masses demand that which will soothe them in their sins and amuse them while they journey down the Broad Road! The multitude is affected with itching ears which crave novelty and that which is sensational. They have ears which wish to be tickled, ears which eagerly drink in the songs of professional and unsaved soloists and choristers, ears which are well pleased with the vulgar slang of our modern evangelists!

    The things which are now done in so many churches--the socials, the fund-raisers, the bazaars, the concerts, the moving picture shows and other forms of entertainment--what are these but idolatrous commercialization of these houses of prayer! No wonder that such places are devoid of spirituality and strangers to the power of God. The Lord will not tolerate an unholy mixture of worldly things with spiritual.

    "Get these things out of here! Stop turning My Father's house into a marketplace!" John 2:16
     
  6. nChrist

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    The Christian and Prayer

    (Charles Spurgeon)

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    If any of you should ask me for the epitome of the Christian life, I would say that it is in one word--prayer.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    The habit of private prayer, and the constant practice of heart-communion with God--are the surest indicators of the work of the Holy spirit upon the soul.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    The more a man loves God and becomes more like Jesus--the more delight he takes in heart communion with God.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    All of our libraries and our studies are mere emptiness, compared with our prayer closets.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    We grow in Christlikeness, in private prayer.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    Prayer is the true gauge of spiritual health.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    I have now concentrated all my prayers into one--and that one prayer is this: that I may die to self, and live wholly to Him.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    He who has the key of prayer can open Heaven! Yes, he has access to the heart of God!

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    Nothing brings such leanness into a Christian's soul, as lack of prayer.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    A prayerless soul, is a Christless soul. Prayer is . . .
    the lisping of the believing infant,
    the shout of the fighting believer,
    the requiem of the dying saint falling asleep in Jesus.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    A Christian's vigor, happiness, growth and usefulness--all depend upon prayer.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    Prayer is the autograph of the Holy Spirit upon the renewed heart.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    Prayer is the indispensable mark of the true child of God.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    I would rather teach one man to pray--than ten men to preach!

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    Nine times out of ten, spiritual declension from God begins in the neglect of private prayer.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    Prayer with the heart, is the heart of prayer.

    ~ ~ ~ ~

    We make more real advance in the divine life in an hour of sincere prayer--than we do in a month of sermon-hearing!
     
  7. nChrist

    nChrist AKA: Tom - Saved By Grace Through Faith Supporter

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    The road by which the Spirit leads God's children!

    (J.C. Ryle, "Heirs of God" 1878)

    "As many as are led by the Spirit of God--they are the sons of God." Romans 8:14

    All true Christians are under the leading and teaching of a power which is Almighty, though unseen--even the power of the Holy Spirit. They no longer turn to their own way, and walk in the light of their own eyes, and follow their own natural heart's desire. The Spirit leads them. The Spirit guides them. There is a movement in their hearts, lives, and affections, which they feel--though they may not be able to explain; and a movement which is always more or less in the same direction.

    They are all led . . .
    away from sin,
    away from self-righteousness,
    away from the world!

    This is the road by which the Spirit leads God's children.
    Those whom God adopts as His children--He teaches and trains.
    He shows them their own hearts.
    He makes them weary of their own ways.

    They are all led to Christ.
    They are all led to the Bible.
    They are all led to prayer.
    They are all led to holiness.
    This is the beaten path along which the Spirit makes them to travel.
    Those whom God adopts--He always sanctifies.
    He makes sin very bitter to them.
    He makes holiness very sweet.

    When they are taken into the wilderness, and taught to see their own emptiness--it is the leading of the Spirit.

    It is He who leads them to Mount Sinai, and first shows them the law--that their hearts may be broken.

    It is He who leads them to Mount Calvary, and shows them the cross--that their hearts may be bound up and healed.

    It is He who leads them to Mount Pisgah, and gives them distinct views of the promised land--that their hearts may be cheered.

    Each and all of God's children is the subject of these leadings.
    Each and all is led by the right way, to bring him to a city of habitation.

    Settle this down in your heart, and do not let it go: the children of God are a people "led by the Spirit of God," and always led more or less in the same way. Their experience will tally wonderfully when they compare notes in Heaven.

    "I guide you in the way of wisdom and lead you along straight paths." Proverbs 4:11

    "In your unfailing love You will lead the people You have redeemed.
    In Your strength You will guide them to Your holy dwelling." Exodus 15:13
     
  8. nChrist

    nChrist AKA: Tom - Saved By Grace Through Faith Supporter

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    The best way to spend your leisure time

    (Charles Spurgeon, "Paul, His Cloak and His Books"

    "Give yourself unto reading!" 1 Timothy 4:13

    The man who never reads, will never be read; he who never quotes, will never be quoted.

    He who will not use the thoughts of other men's brains, proves that he has no brains of his own.

    You need to read!

    We are quite persuaded that the very best way for you to be spending your leisure time, is to be either reading or praying.

    You may get much instruction from books which afterwards you may use as a true weapon in your Lord and Master's service.

    Paul cries, "Bring the books!" Join in the cry.
     
  9. nChrist

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    As foolish as to hope to bind an angel with a string, or to lure a star with music!

    (Charles Spurgeon)

    "I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes!" Romans 1:16

    To try to win a soul to Christ by keeping that soul in ignorance of any truth, is contrary to the mind of the Spirit. To endeavor to save men by mere claptrap, or entertainments, or excitements, or oratorical displays--is as foolish as to hope to bind an angel with a string, or to lure a star with music!

    The best attraction is the gospel in its purity. The weapon with which the Lord conquers men, is the truth as it is in Jesus. The gospel will be found equal to every emergency. The gospel is an arrow which can pierce the hardest heart--a balm which will heal the deadliest wound. Preach it, and preach nothing else. Rely implicitly upon the old, old gospel.

    You need no other nets when you fish for men; those your Master has given you are strong enough for the large fish, and have meshes fine enough to hold the little ones.

    Spread those nets and no others, and you need not fear the fulfillment of His Word, "I will make you fishers of men."
     
  10. nChrist

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    Let us beware of the love of money!

    (J.C. Ryle)

    "Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in Heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." Matthew 6:19-21

    "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God!" Mark 10:25

    "For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs." 1 Timothy 6:10

    Let us beware of the love of money! It is possible to use money well, and do good with it. But for each one who makes a right use of money, there are thousands who make a wrong use of it, and do harm both to themselves and others.

    Let the worldly man, if he will, make an idol of money, and count him happiest who has most of it.

    But let the Christian, who professes to have "treasure in Heaven," set his face like a flint against the spirit of the world in this matter. Let him not worship gold. He is not the best man in God's eyes who has most money, but he who has most grace and likeness to Jesus.

    "Give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread." Proverbs 30:8

    "Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said: Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you." Hebrews 13:5
     
  11. nChrist

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    The most unpopular, hated and feared teaching in the entire Bible!

    (Brian Schwertley, "The Biblical Doctrine of Hell Examined")

    "The rich man also died and was buried. In Hell, where he was in torment . . ." Luke 16:22-23

    The doctrine of eternal punishment is probably the most unpopular, hated and feared teaching in the entire Bible. The thought of people burning in Hell for eternity is most repugnant to the human mind.

    Yet in spite of the terrifying nature of the doctrine, and in spite of the fact that people find the idea of everlasting torment revolting, the strongest support of the doctrine comes from the lips of Jesus Christ. Think of it: the most terrifying imagery and detailed descriptions of Hell are found in the discourses of the Redeemer! Jesus continually warned men and women of the danger of going to Hell. Jesus Christ, who foretold that He would come again to judge the entire human race, spoke more about Hell and its terrors than all the prophets and apostles combined. To ignore and disregard the clear teaching of Jesus, is to deny Christ.

    The Bible sets before us many differing aspects of the torments in Hell as a warning. The torments of Hell help us to understand how much God hates sin. Oh what dreadful torments await those who die without Christ!

    "Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in Hell." Matthew 10:28

    "They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth!" Matthew 13:42

    "Then He will say to those on His left: Depart from Me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels!" Matthew 25:41
     
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  12. nChrist

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    The most unpopular, hated and feared teaching in the entire Bible!

    (Brian Schwertley, "The Biblical Doctrine of Hell Examined")

    "The rich man also died and was buried. In Hell, where he was in torment . . ." Luke 16:22-23

    The doctrine of eternal punishment is probably the most unpopular, hated and feared teaching in the entire Bible. The thought of people burning in Hell for eternity is most repugnant to the human mind.

    Yet in spite of the terrifying nature of the doctrine, and in spite of the fact that people find the idea of everlasting torment revolting, the strongest support of the doctrine comes from the lips of Jesus Christ. Think of it: the most terrifying imagery and detailed descriptions of Hell are found in the discourses of the Redeemer! Jesus continually warned men and women of the danger of going to Hell. Jesus Christ, who foretold that He would come again to judge the entire human race, spoke more about Hell and its terrors than all the prophets and apostles combined. To ignore and disregard the clear teaching of Jesus, is to deny Christ.

    The Bible sets before us many differing aspects of the torments in Hell as a warning. The torments of Hell help us to understand how much God hates sin. Oh what dreadful torments await those who die without Christ!

    "Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in Hell." Matthew 10:28

    "They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth!" Matthew 13:42

    "Then He will say to those on His left: Depart from Me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels!" Matthew 25:41
     
  13. nChrist

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    Christ's sympathy!

    (Octavius Winslow, "The Tears of Christ")

    "Jesus wept!" John 11:35

    The Creator of all worlds, the Author of all beings, the Upholder of the universe--raining tears of human woe and sympathy upon a grave!

    Oh, there lives not a being in the universe who can enter into our bereavements with the sympathy, the support, and the soothing of Christ!

    They were tears of sympathy. His heart was touched, deeply touched, with sympathy for the sorrow of others. He wept because the mourning sisters wept. He mingled His tears with theirs.

    This is true sympathy, "weeping with those who weep," making their sorrow our own. How really our Lord does this with His people. So completely is He our Surety--that He takes our sins and infirmities, our trials and sorrows upon Himself, as if they were all and entirely His own. Our sins were so completely laid upon Him--that not one remains charged to the account of those who believe in Jesus.

    Our present griefs are so entirely absorbed in Him, that,
    softened by His love,
    soothed by His sympathy,
    supported by His grace--
    the trial is welcome,
    the affliction is sweet, and
    the rod of a Father's chastening, buds and blossoms into delectable fruit.

    Bereaved mourner, the sympathy of Christ is yours! The same Savior who wept at the grave of Bethany, now shares your grief. Do not imagine that your sorrow is isolated, or that your tears are forbidden or unseen. You have a merciful and faithful High Priest who is touched with your present calamity.

    There exists no sympathy . . .
    so real,
    so perceptive,
    so deep,
    so tender,
    so sanctifying--
    as Christ's sympathy.

    If your heavenly Father has seen it wise and good to remove from you the spring of human pity--it is but that He may draw you closer beneath the wing of Jesus' compassion, presence and love.

    O child of sorrow, will not this suffice, that you possess Christ's sympathy--as immeasurable and exhaustless as the ocean--as exquisite and changeless as His being! Yield your heart to His rich compassion!

    Will Jesus be regardless of what I feel, and the sorrows under which I groan? Oh no! The sigh that bursts in secret from my heart is not secret to Him; the tear that is my food day and night and drops unperceived and unknown--is known and remembered by Him!

    "Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses!" Hebrews 4:14-15

    "You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in Your bottle. You have recorded each one in Your book." Psalm 56:8
     
  14. nChrist

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    There are 'Jebusites' in every Christian heart!

    (J. R. Miller, "Miller's Year Book--a Year's Daily Readings")

    "The king and his men marched to Jerusalem, to fight against the Jebusites who inhabited the land." 2 Samuel 5:6

    The Jebusites still held a stronghold in the heart of the country, never having been dislodged. Just so, there are 'Jebusites' in every Christian heart!

    In every heart, there are little 'Jebusite strongholds', which it seems impossible for us to conquer. Sometimes it is a secret sin which lives on, unconquered, amid the general holiness of a life. Sometimes it is a remnant of the old nature--such as pride, worldliness, selfishness, lust, or bitterness. There are many other such citadels of evil, which rear their proud towers and defy conquest.

    "We all have our faults!" we say, and under this cloak we manage to tuck away a large number of dear idols that we do not want to give up!

    We ought to give attention to these unsubdued parts of our life--that every thought, feeling, and temper may be brought into subjection to Christ. It is perilous to leave even one such unconquered stronghold in our heart!

    "If your eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into the fire of Hell!" Matthew 18:9

    "For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the evil deeds of the body, you will live." Romans 8:13

    "Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived." Colossians 3:5-7
     
  15. nChrist

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    The more I see of Jesus

    (Mary Winslow)

    "My ears had heard of You, but now my eyes have seen You! Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes." Job 42:5-6

    The more I see of Jesus, the more He opens to me His loving heart--the deeper is my sorrow for sin. I lie down in the dust at His feet closer than ever I did before. I can truly say I abhor myself in dust and ashes before Him. My heart seems ready to melt into contrition in view of the ten thousand thousand sins, willful and aggravating--that I have committed against Him who loved me with an everlasting love, and with loving kindness drew me to Himself.

    So eternal and deep, so sovereign and boundless is the love of Jesus, that angels cannot fathom it! He is nothing but sincere, constant, and unabating love--to the weakest, the most unworthy of all His little flock.

    I feel such a weariness of this world that nothing here gives me anything more than a momentary, passing pleasure--and it is gone at a glance.

    Oh, to have such a Friend as Jesus, who feels all our sorrows, carries all our burdens, and has promised to bring us safely through this trying world, and place us at last at His own right hand, where neither sickness nor sorrow shall ever come!

    Oh for Heaven! Nothing else will satisfy my longing soul, but the sight of Him it loves.

    Jesus is all in all to me, and He will be all in all through eternity!

    Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise His holy name!
     
  16. nChrist

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    Our afflictions are light!

    (Arthur Pink)

    Our afflictions are light, when compared with what we really deserve.

    They are light, when compared with the sufferings of the Lord Jesus.

    But perhaps their real lightness is best seen, by comparing them with the eternal glory which is awaiting us!

    "For our light and momentary afflictions are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all! So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal!" 2 Corinthians 4:17-18
     
  17. nChrist

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    Not our home!

    (David Harsha, "Immanuel's Land")

    "For this world is not our home; we are looking forward to our city in Heaven, which is yet to come!" Hebrews 13:14

    We are strangers and pilgrims on the earth.

    This present world is not our home. We are coming up from the wilderness with our faces Zionward; we are traveling to the Celestial City!

    Our path is rough, but the Savior sustains us.

    Our pilgrimage lies through a wilderness, but faith cheers us with a view of the glorious rest of the redeemed in our Father's house, in mansions of blessedness!

    Let this consideration animate us amid the conflicts of life. In a little while we shall obtain a joyous entrance into the glorious rest above. The storms of life's ocean will soon carry us into the haven of peace, where there is no trouble.

    The language of inspiration is, "Get up, go away! For this is not your resting place, because it is defiled, it is ruined beyond all remedy!" Micah 2:10

    Your Savior, pilgrim Christian, has prepared for you a nobler rest than this polluted world!

    In His Father's house are many spacious mansions, where your happy spirit, after tasting the bitter cup of life's sorrow, shall rest in eternal blessedness!

    "We would rather be absent from the body, and at home with the Lord!" 2 Corinthians 5:8

    "For this world is not our home; we are looking forward to our city in Heaven, which is yet to come!" Hebrews 13:14
     
  18. nChrist

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    A vexing vanity!

    (Thomas Watson)

    "Deliver us from evil." Matthew 6:13

    In this petition, we pray to be delivered from the evil world. "He died for our sins, just as God our Father planned--in order to rescue us from this evil world in which we live." Galatians 1:4

    It is an evil world, as it is a DEFILING world. The opinions and examples of the world are defiling. How easily are we hurried to sin, when we have the tide of natural corruption, and the wind of example to carry us! "You shall not follow a multitude to do evil." Exodus 23:2. Bad examples are contagious. "They mingled among the pagans--and adopted their evil customs." Psalm 106:35

    Living in the world, is like traveling on a dirty road. It requires a high degree of grace to keep ourselves "unspotted by the world." James 1:27

    It is an evil world, as it is an ENSNARING world.
    The world is full of snares.
    Company is a snare.
    Recreation is a snare.
    Riches are golden snares.

    The apostle John speaks of the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life." 1 John 2:16.
    The lust of the flesh is beauty.
    The lust of the eye is money.
    The pride of life is honor.
    These are the natural man's trinity!

    The world is a flattering enemy. Whom it kisses--it betrays! The world is a silken halter. The pleasures of the world, like opium, cast men into the sleep of carnal security. King Lysimachus sold his crown for a cup of water. Just so, many part with Heaven--for this poor world. They are enslaved with the world's golden fetters! The world bewitched Demas. 2 Timothy 4:10. One of Christ's own apostles was caught with a silver bait. It is hard to drink the wine of prosperity--and not be giddy. The world, through our innate corruption, is evil, as it is a snare.

    It is an evil world, as it is a DEADENING world. It dulls and deadens the affections to heavenly objects. Earthly things choke the seed of the Word. A man entangled in the world is so taken up with secular concerns, that he can no more mind heavenly realities--than an elephant can fly in the air! And even such as have grace in them--when their affections are beslimed with earth, they find themselves much indisposed to meditation and prayer; it is like swimming with a heavy stone around the neck!

    It is an evil world, as it is a DECEITFUL world.
    The world makes us believe that it will satisfy our desires--but it only increases them!

    It is an evil world, as it is a VEXING world. It is full of trouble.
    "Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows!" John 16:33
    "Man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upward!" Job 5:7
    "How frail is humanity! How short is life, how full of trouble!" Job 14:1

    One was of opinion that before the fall--the rose grew without prickles; but now every sweet flower of our life has its thorns! There are many things which cause trouble.
    Some are troubled that they have no children--others that they have children.
    If a man is poor--he is despised by the rich; if he is rich--he is envied by the poor.

    The world is a vexing vanity! If we do not find an ensnaring world--we shall find it an afflicting world; it has more in it to trouble us than tempt us.

    The world is a sea, where we are tossed upon the surging waves of sorrow, and often in danger of shipwreck!

    The world is a wilderness, full of fiery serpents!

    What great need then, have we to pray, "Lord, deliver us from being hurt by this evil world!"
     
  19. nChrist

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    He should be a walking image of Jesus!

    (Charles Spurgeon)

    "Whoever claims to live in Him, must walk as Jesus did." 1 John 2:6

    "As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord--so walk in Him" Colossians 2:6

    If we have received Christ Himself in our inmost hearts, our new life will manifest its intimate acquaintance with Him by a walk of faith.

    Walking implies action. Our religion is not to be confined to our prayer-closet. That which we believe--we must carry out into practical effect. If a man walks in Christ, then he so acts as Christ would act. He should be a walking image of Jesus--and men say of that man, "He is like his Master--he lives like Jesus Christ!"

    Walking signifies progress. Proceed from grace to grace, run forward until you reach the uttermost degree of Christlikeness that a man can attain to.

    Walking implies continuance. There must be a perpetual abiding in Christ. How many Christians think that in the morning and evening they ought to come into the company of Jesus--and may then give their hearts to the world all the day. But this is poor living--we should always be with Him, treading in His steps and doing His will.

    Walking also implies habit. When we speak of a man's walk and conduct--we mean his habits, the constant tenor of his life. We must keep close to Him, cling to Him, never let Him go--and follow in His steps.

    "That you would walk worthy of God, who calls you into His own kingdom and glory!" 1 Thessalonians 2:12

    "Finally then, brethren, we request and exhort you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us instruction as to how you ought to walk and please God (just as you actually do walk), that you excel still more!" 1 Thessalonians 4:1
     
  20. nChrist

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    The infinite tenderness of Jesus!

    (Charles Spurgeon)

    "I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd sacrifices His life for the sheep!" John 10:11

    "He will carry the lambs in His bosom, holding them close to His heart!" Isaiah 40:11

    Who is He of whom such gracious words are spoken? He is the Good Shepherd. Why does He carry the lambs in His bosom? Because He has a tender heart, and any weakness in His redeemed children at once melts His heart.

    The sighs, the ignorance, the feebleness of the little ones of His flock draw forth His compassion.

    He is considerate of the weak of His flock. He purchased them with His blood, they are His property--He must and will care for those who cost Him so dear.

    He is responsible for each lamb, bound by covenant engagements not to lose one. They are all a part of His glory and reward.

    "He carries the lambs in His bosom!"

    Here is boundless affection. Would He put them in His bosom if He did not love them so much?

    Here is tender nearness. So near are they, that they could not possibly be nearer.

    Here is hallowed familiarity. There are precious 'love passages' between Christ and His weak ones.

    Here is perfect safety. In His bosom, who can hurt them? None can snatch them away from His omnipotence! They can never perish--ever!

    Here is perfect rest and sweetest comfort.

    Surely we are not sufficiently sensible of the infinite tenderness of Jesus!
     
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