Scriptural meditations on God's Word (5500 posted here) sent daily for 18 years --

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Gems from June 2005

"The words of Job are ended. I . . . repent in dust and ashes."
(Job 31:40, 42:6)

In their long-winded dispute, Job and his four "comforters" used hundreds of arguments, dozens of accusations, and some 13,000 words. Finally, Job felt he had said all there was to say. Not quite. Almighty God started speaking and Job realized that he needed to say at least two more words: "I repent." In the heat of verbal battle it is easy to forget those important words. Think of how many marriages could be saved, how many friendships could be repaired, how many rifts in fellowship or splits in assemblies could be avoided if we used "forgive me" sooner! (D. Logan)

N.J. Hiebert # 2265

June 1

"But it is good to be zealously affected ,always in a good thing and not only when I am present with you." (Galatians 4:18)

The experience of Paul with the Galatians was the exact opposite to what was found at Philippi. The apostle speaks of them as having always "obeyed, not as in his presence only, but much more in his absence." They were remarkable for their obedient spirit when he was present; and it is always the spirit of grace which produces this, as the law begets servility and fear. When we are happy in God's presence, we are united in one common object, and that object is Christ. There is thus a motive that governs every affection and action; and happiness, peace, and submissiveness are the proper and natural effects of grace working among the children of God.

At Philippi, then, they had always obeyed, not only when Paul was there, but much more in his absence. They were working out their own salvation with fear and trembling, conscious of the mighty conflict in which they were engaged. They did not allow the fond dream that, because they were Christians, all the difficulty was over; but, on the contrary, having been brought to Christ, they nevertheless found themselves in the presence of a powerful enemy, and hence they were thrown upon God. (William Kelly - Lectures on the Epistle to the Galatians)

N.J. Hiebert # 2266

June 2

"For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments." (Ezra 7:10)

Where can one find a resource against spiritual decline and its results? There is but one resource: the Word of God. God raises up Ezra to teach the people the law of Moses and to remind them of its importance. It is not a question of new revelations, . . . but simply of bringing "the statutes and the ordinances" (verse 10) contained in "the law of Jehovah" to light again and of applying them to consciences.
Let us not forget that this is also our only safeguard in the present day, and our only means of restoration. The Lord says, "To this man will I look: to the afflicted and contrite in spirit, and who trembleth at my word" (Isaiah 66:2). (H.L. Rossier - Meditations on Ezra)

N.J. Hiebert # 2267

June 3

"Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God." (Matthew 5:8)

There is no making light of sin, but the most exquisite tenderness to the poor sinner. The man nearest to God has the most intense hatred of sin, but the most intense love and tenderness to the poor sinner. The man nearest to God is always the hardest on himself, and the most tender to others, specially if they have failed! The further I am away from God the harder I shall be on others, while I let myself off tenderly - far too tenderly. (W.T.P. Wolston, M.D. - Handfuls of Purpose)

N.J. Hiebert # 2268

June 4

". . . the unsearchable riches of Christ." (Ephesians 3:8)

I saw a bee exploring the wealth of a nasturtium flower. Then I thought of all the flowers in my garden, and of all the flowers in my neighbourhood, and of all the flowers in my country - growing in quiet meadows, on heathery moor and in twilight glen; the floral splendours of other lands - bending on the blowing plain, or nestling in the hollows of the towering heights; to the inconceivable luxuriance of the tropics.
And then I came back to my bee, and I thought of that bee as setting out to explore the floral wonders of the universe! Then I came back to the apostle, equally busy extracting juices "sweeter than honey and the honeycomb" and almost bewildered by the vast and over-whelming glories of His inheritance. The unsearchable riches of Christ - wealth inexplorable! (Mrs. Charles E.Cowman - Traveling Toward Sunrise)

N.J. Hiebert # 2269

June 5

"A man's pride shall bring him low." (Proverbs 29:23)

While thou art priding in thy gifts, thou art dwindling and withering in thy grace. Such are like corn that runs up much into straw, whose ear commonly is light and thin. Grace is too much neglected where gifts are too highly prized; we are commanded to be clothed with humility. . . . Pride kills the spirit of praise: when thou should bless God, thou art applauding thyself. It destroys Christian love, and stabs our fellowship with the saints to the heart: a proud man hath not room enough to walk in company, because the gifts of others he thinks stand in his way. Pride so distempers the palate that it can relish nothing that is drawn from another's vessel. . . . Pride loves to climb up, not as Zaccheus, to see Christ, but to be seen himself. (William Gurnall - The Christian in Complete Armour - Gleanings from the complete work published in 1665)

N.J. Hiebert # 2270

June 6

"And with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation." (Isaiah 12:3)

How many wells of salvation has God provided for the joy and pleasure of His people? I'm not sure, but for a start I'd like to suggest an acrostic of nine inexhaustible wells of salvation for our joy and refreshment.

Security - In a world of insecurity, our Good Shepherd has given us a secure promise of eternal life. We shall never perish (John 10:28).

Assurance - God's inspired word can be fully trusted. It not only makes us wise to salvation, but fully fits and furnishes us unto every good work (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
Love - Having demonstrated His love by dying for us, our risen Saviour continues to love us with an everlasting love (Jeremiah 31:3).
Vision - With opened eyes, we can behold the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 4:6).
Access - We have boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, the new and living way (Hebrews 10:19).
Testimony - Our lives, once full of bitterness and sin, can now set forth the excellencies of Him who has called us out of darkness into His wonderful light (1 Peter 2:9).
Illumination - God has revealed to us by His Spirit the things He has prepared for those who love Him - things which eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor heart conceived (1 Corinthians 2:9-10).
Opportunity - We have the great privilege of being ambassadors for Christ and urging people everywhere to be reconciled to God (2 Corinthians 5:20).
Nearness - We who once were far away have been brought near to God by the blood of Christ (Ephesians 2:13). (G.W. Steidl)

N.J. Hiebert # 2271

June 7

"Then Daniel said to the king, 'O king live forever! My God sent His angel and shut the lions' mouths, so that they have not hurt me, because I was found innocent before Him; and also, O king, I have done no wrong before you.' Then the king was exceedingly glad for him, and commanded that they should take Daniel up out of the den. So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and no injury whatever was found on him, because he believed in his God." 

(Daniel 6:21-23)

Hurricanes are whirling storms that can measure several hundred miles in diameter. Their devastating winds begin to be clocked at 74 miles per hour and may exceed 150 miles per hour. Yet in the centre of these storms is a space about 20 miles in diameter where everything is perfectly calm. Surrounded by roaring winds and heavy rains, the eye of the storm is a site of serenity and tranquility.

Daniel occupied such a spot. While confined in a den of lions, he was surrounded by a pride of hungry felines that would have liked nothing better than a good Kosher meal. Yet through the intervention of God's angels, Daniel had nothing to worry about. In the midst of a terrifying situation, he experienced God's perfect peace and calm.

The storms of life are bound to hit all of us at some point. The strong winds of adversity and the heavy rains of affliction show no respect for a person's age or circumstances. Yet in the midst of these trials, God offers to those who have placed their trust in His Son, Jesus Christ, a place of perfect peace and safety. Isaiah testifies, "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee" (Isaiah 26:3).

If you feel like a hurricane is blowing through your life, a hurricane of debt, depression, disease or deprivation, look to God, who is able to keep you in its eye. Cast your cares upon Him, and He will provide a place of rest for your soul.

When you're in a storm, stay close to the eye.
(This was sent, with thanks, by a Friend of Gems, who agreed to let me share this with you.)

N.J. Hiebert # 2272

June 8

"A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; And a man of understanding (intelligence) shall attain unto wise counsels: To understand a proverb, and the interpretation: The words of the wise, and their dark sayings: " (Proverbs 1:5,6)

It is only the self-confident blusterer who considers himself superior to instruction. Readiness to learn is ever characteristic of the truly wise. That which is worthy of our contemplation is not always simply expressed; for God would have the senses exercised to discern both good and evil. It must be evident to any tyro (novice) that were it God's desire but to impart information to His creatures concerning the way to heaven and Christian responsibility, He could have done so in a much simpler way than that through which He has chosen to give us His truth. But this would have done away with that exercise which is both for our blessing and for His glory. Hence the exhortation, "Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Timothy 2:15). "Dark sayings" become luminous when the man of God studies them having eyes anointed with the eye-salve of the Spirit of truth. (H.A. Ironside - Proverbs)

N.J. Hiebert # 2273

June 9

"Thou art not able to go against this Philistine (Goliath) to fight with him, for thou art but a youth." (1 Samuel 17:33)

The path of faith is a very simple and a very narrow one. It neither deifies the means on the one hand, nor despises it on the other; it simply values it so far as it is evidently God's means, and no further. There is a vast difference between God's using the creature to minister to me, and my using it to shut Him out. This difference is not sufficiently attended to. God used the ravens to minister to Elijah, but Elijah did not use them to exclude God. If the heart be really trusting in God, it will not trouble itself about His means. It waits on Him, in the sweet assurance that by what means soever He pleases, He will bless, He will minister, he will provide. (C.H. Mackintosh)

N.J. Hiebert # 2274

June 10

"What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and, have not works?"
(James 2:14)

Will either God or man be satisfied with a powerless and profitless profession? Surely not. God looks for reality, and honours it where He sees it; and as for man, he can understand naught save the living and intelligible utterance of a faith that shows itself in acts. We are surrounded by the profession of religion, - the phraseology of faith is on every lip; but faith itself is as rare a gem as ever - that faith which will enable a man to push out from the shore of present circumstances, and meet the waves and the winds, and not only meet them, but endure them, even though the Master should seem to be asleep on the pillow. (C.H. Mackintosh)

N.J. Hiebert # 2275

June 11

"Train up a child in the way he should go and, when he is old, he will not depart from it." 

(Proverbs 22:6)

A friend once told the poet Coleridge he didn't believe in giving religious instruction to a small child. He insisted that every young person must have an open mind when he chooses his faith. Without replying to this statements, Coleridge invited his visitor into the backyard to look at his garden. The man was surprised to see that part of it was badly in need of attention. "Why, you have nothing here but weeds!" he exclaimed. The poet answered, "I didn't wish to infringe in any way upon the liberty of this plot of ground, so I gave it a chance to express itself and choose its own product." The guest got the point!

The application is obvious. If a youngster is permitted to grow up without spiritual training and loving discipline, he will develop wrong attitudes and bad habits. Our text in the King James Version reads, "Train up a child in the way he should go and, when he is old, he will not depart from it." This is a solemn injunction with a wonderful promise. But a more literal translation is, "Train up a child in his own way, and when he is old he will not depart from it." Stated like this, it is a strong warning. If a boy or girl is allowed to follow his own wilful desires, he will remain a selfish person all through life.

It doesn't really matter which of these readings you give to Proverbs 22:6, for they are two sides of the same coin. A child needs both biblical teaching and wise correction. Without them he will develop aimlessly like an uncultivated garden! You must plant the seeds and pull out the weeds! (H.V.L)

Then shape their lives while they are young,
The children change so fast;
Quickly they harden in the mold,
When plastic years are past
. (Nicholson, alt.)

Rearing children is like drafting a blueprint; you have to know where to draw the line.
(Our Daily Bread, RBC ministries, Copyright (1974), Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted permission)

N.J. Hiebert # 2276

June 12

"What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them. And when ye stand praying forgive." (Mark 11:24-26)

Are any of us cherishing an unforgiving spirit? It will prove a great hindrance to our prayers being answered. And the same thing will probably happen if we keep for ourselves what should be given to God. There is no man so poor as the man who is always saving. It is well to remember the words of the wise king: "There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty." And while it is always true that God in His grace deals with us far above what we deserve, yet in government He deals with us very much as we deal with Him and with one another, With the merciful Thou wild show Thyself merciful; with an upright man Thou wilt show Thyself upright; with the pure Thou wilt show Thyself pure; and with the froward Thou wilt show Thyself froward." (Psalm 18:25,26) (C.H. Brown)

N.J. Hiebert # 2277

June 13

"A Lamb without blemish and without spot." (1 Peter 1:19)

Christ, the spotless Lamb of God, came to earth to bear away our sins. After the carnage of the cross, He was still the spotless Lamb of God. In an attempt to save a patient's life, a surgeon removed a malignant tumor. The effort was in vain, but in the process he nicked his left hand with a scalpel. Six months later, the doctor noted a mass growing on his left palm. It proved to be a cancer identical to that of his patient. Christ bore out foul sin upon Himself but did not, and could not, become infected by it. Today we worship a Lamb who is spotless, peerless, glorified. (D. Logan)

N.J. Hiebert # 2278

June 14

"And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans . . .thou art neither cold nor hot . . .
and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked
. . ." (Revelation 3:14,15,17)

Knowledge is not faith, and principles are not power. It is a mistake to think the one or the other, however much the Holy Spirit may use the knowledge of the Word and principles of truth for our guidance and blessing. The Laodicean element, alas! so rife on every hand, is what we have most to dread. And while Laodiceanism is lifeless profession - "wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked" - the spirit of it is indifference to Christ and His claims; and it may - alas, does - cast its blight over true saints of God. Many of God's children are suffering in their souls from lack of spiritual acquaintance with God's mind as revealed in the Scriptures of eternal truth; but this is not the root of the palsied state of a large number of those who profess to be God's saints. God be praised for those who know, on the infallible authority of His Word brought home to their hearts by His Spirit, that they are "sons of God" by faith in Christ Jesus, and abound with praise and thanksgiving because of it. (H.H.S.)

N.J. Hiebert # 2279

June 15

An oversight - (bishop - from Greek - EPISKOPOS - one who watches over)

"Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof ... neither as lord over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear ..." (1 Peter 5:2-4)

The natural man transforms oversight into a place of authority
The spiritual man performs oversight as a place of responsibility

The natural man in oversight leaps over others and seeks to rule them
The spiritual man in oversight stoops below others and seeks to serve them

The natural man, when challenged, insists on oversight
The spiritual man, when challenged, persists in oversight

(Le Lien Fraternel - Mediation 118)

N.J. Hiebert # 2280

June 16

"We love because He first loved us. . . . And this commandment have we from Him, that he who loveth God love his brother also." (1 John 4:19,21)

When Eve was taken out of Adam, she had no will divergent from his - I speak of the time previous to sin coming in. So in the church, Christ's body, there is but one will, and that is Christ's. Practically there is no way of peace save in the putting off the old man and putting on the new. Then there is no opportunity for discord: there is one will only, the will of Christ, and that will is love. When the Lord Jesus gave a commandment (and His commandment is the expression of Himself) it was, "Love one another as I have loved you." There is no room for discord where Christ's will rules. . . . We never do fully come to peace until we come to the one body which is Christ's body. "Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body."

The church is taken from Christ, and is ruled by His will. I believe that is the force of the Headship; the various members of my body move at the dictation of my head, and so the will of Christ rules the body, and where love rules there can be no discord. Where discord exists saints are not walking in love. (Helps for the Poor of the Flock)

N.J. Hiebert # 2281

June 17

"Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God." (Philippians 4:6)

What is prayer, but the breathing forth of that grace which is breathed into the soul by the Holy Spirit? When God breathed into man the breath of life, he became a living soul; so when God breathes into the creature the breath of spiritual life, he becomes a praying soul: "Behold, he prayeth," (Acts 9:11), said God of Paul to Ananias. Praying is the same to the new creature, as crying to the natural. The child is not learned by art to cry, but by nature - it comes into the world crying. Praying is not a lesson got by forms and rules of art, but flowing from principles of new life. (William Gurnall - The Christian in Complete Armour - Gleaned form the complete work published in 1665)

N.J. Hiebert # 2282

June 18

"But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ."
(Philippians 3:7,8)

Let us especially mark the words, "what things were gain to me." The Apostle is not speaking of his sins, of his guilt, of things of which, as a man, he might justly be ashamed. No; he is referring to his gains, his honours, his distinctions - his religious, his intellectual, his moral, his political advantages - of such things as were calculated to make him an object of envy to his fellows. All these things he counted but loss that he might win Christ. (The Young Christian)

N.J. Hiebert # 2283

June 19

"For ever, O Lord, Thy word is settled in heaven." (Psalm 119:89)

"Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against Thee."
(Psalm 119:11)

These are in good truth golden sentences for the present moment. They set forth the true place for the Word; namely, settled in heaven, and hidden in the heart. Nor is this all; they also link the heart on to the very throne of God by means of His own Word, thus giving to the Christian all the stability and all the moral security which the divine Word is capable of imparting. (C.H. Mackintosh)

N.J. Hiebert # 2284

June 20

"And the angel answered and said unto her (Mary), the Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee; Therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God." (Luke 1:35)

The nature of the Lord Jesus was holy and in no wise sinful. He was therefore born in a manner altogether singular. Without doubt He was born of the virgin, but not this made Him sinless, for the virgin was in herself sinful like any other. She was, however, a believer of remarkable simplicity and purity of character; yet she needed a Saviour, and she had the same Saviour as we in her own Son. But well she knew that her Son was unlike any other son in the way in which He became flesh. It was by the power of the Holy Spirit. He, not she, was therefore immaculate. it is well to adhere to the truth. For in daring to add to revealed truth, superstition only invents a falsehood which gives Christ's unique place to another; and God will surely judge the blasphemy. (Wm. Kelly)

N.J. Hiebert # 2285

June 21

"Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art Mine." 

(Isaiah 43:1)
"For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee."
(Isaiah 41:13)

The Lord is in control of every circumstance and will bring safely through every one who puts their trust in Him. He does not alter our circumstances, but He is with us in them, holding our hand and whispering, I am with thee, fear not. (Fragment - Christian Truth - Vol. 23)

N.J. Hiebert # 2286

June 22

"I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us." (Romans 8:18)

"I reckon," says Paul, like a grand mathematician.

I have known, says he, every form of human suffering; at one time believers, even, forsook me, and no man stood by me. But I calculate, I reckon - I put these trials into one scale; and were I to have an eternity of them, they were as nothing compared with that "eternal weight of glory" which I have in the other. (Selected)

N.J. Hiebert # 2287

June 23

" . . . that spiritual Rock that followed them . . ." (1 Corinthians 10:4)

At the time of her golden jubilee, Queen Victoria received dignitaries from all over the world. Among those who came to honour her was a representative from Madagascar. After conveying the good wishes of his people, he surprised Her Majesty by asking permission to sing for her. Those assembled thought he would choose one of his country's native songs, but they were amazed when he began, "Rock of Ages, cleft for me, let me hide myself in Thee." The rendition was so beautiful that it brought tears to the eyes of the Queen.

The author of that lovely hymn Augustus Toplady was saved at the age of 16 while attending a small evangelistic meeting in a rural district of Ireland. The sermon was preached by an illiterate layman, who pointed the youth to the Lord Jesus Christ - the Rock of Ages - in whom he could hide from God's wrath and find peace and forgiveness. As the young convert became established in his new faith, he felt God's call and began studying for the ministry. Since he was very frail, however, his fiery zeal and inspired efforts soon put too much strain on his weak body. Yet his faith never wavered, for during his illness he composed the soul-thrilling words of the now famous hymn "Rock of Ages." Augustus Toplady died of tuberculosis when he was only 38, but the lyrics he wrote, firmly based on the Scriptures, still live on!

The next time you sing that old favourite, notice how the truths of salvation are expressed in all the verses, They will bless you as they did The Queen of England so many years ago. (H.G.B.)

When I rise to worlds unknown
And behold Thee on Thy throne,
Rock of ages, cleft for me,
Le me hide myself in Thee

You will not drift through life if you are anchored to the Rock. (D.J.D.)

N.J. Hiebert # 2288

June 24

"And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden. ...Jabal, he was the father of such as dwell in tents, and such as have cattle ... Jubal, he was the father of all such as handle the harp and organ ... Tubal-cain, an instructor of every artificer in brass and in iron ..." (Genesis 16-21)

The tendency of everything, even the best on this earth, is to make us forget that we do not belong to it. You may think that very sweeping; but, I repeat, it does not matter what it is, even the best thing that belongs to this world has the tendency to make us forget that we do not belong to it. Thus everything becomes a test to us; mercies test us, favours test us, and we find that we cannot trust ourselves even for a moment. (W.T.T.)

N.J. Hiebert # 2289

June 25

"The Lord is the portion . . . of my cup." (Psalms 16:5)

Such is the language of the psalmist. Is it yours? Look now into your cup. You may have youth in that cup, beauty, friendship, honours, and riches in that cup; but, if you have only these, you have nothing - nothing but a mere earthly sediment which can never run over but will be emptied at death.

Look now into the cup of the believer. There may not be youth there, nor beauty there, nor friendship there, nor honour there, nor riches there; but CHRIST is there, a portion infinitely great and inexhaustibly fresh. The believer can say, "The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup." No more sediment this! for, adds the psalmist. "My cup runneth over." (Psalm 23:5) (J.D.S.)

N.J. Hiebert # 2290

June 26

"Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words shall not pass away." (Matthew 24:35)

I earnestly urge you to make Bible reading your daily habit. Let it be a fixed principle with you that you need the words of His mouth for your soul's nourishment and health.

You have found forgiveness through faith in the atoning blood of Christ, and you are supremely happy. But forgiveness is not food. And if you have no food you will have no strength . You will hunger, and the hungry shall eat anything.

If you do not go on applying yourself to the daily reading of your Bible, your famished soul will readily eat of the world's dainties. But if you are nourished by the hidden manna, you will have no heart for the world's allurements.

If you would stand before the enemy, if you would walk humbly and happily with your God, if you would be useful in the Lord's vineyard, search the Scriptures daily and diligently. (Christian Truth)

N.J. Hiebert # 2291

June 27

"Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name." (Philippians 2:9)

Recently I met a colleague with whom I had worked over 30 years ago. As we greeted each other, he said to me, "I remember your face, but I've forgotten your name." As I left him I thought, how different with the Lord Jesus. We know nothing of His physical appearance, but we know His name. How could we ever forget it! Scripture abounds in its exaltation, lifting it above all others. And by the grace of God, we can say with all our hearts, His name is Jesus; my Saviour and my God. (Drew Craig)

There is a name I love to hear, I love to sing its worth;
It sounds like music in my ear, The sweetest name on earth
(F. Whitfield)

N.J. Hiebert # 2292

June 28

"Occupy Till I come." (Luke 19:13)

What the Lord desires in His people is wholeheartedness for Himself. This does not imply separation from the ordinary occupations of the world. But the question is whether these occupations entangle the heart and become our objects; or whether, while pursuing these occupations, the heart is still free for Christ. Is getting on in the world what fills our thoughts? or, are we, while providing all things honest in the sight of all men, really living among men and before men as those who are not their own, but bought with a price - as those who, being constrained by the love of Christ, are seeking, however feebly, to live not unto themselves, but unto Him who died for them and rose again? (T.B.B.)

N.J. Hiebert # 2293

June 29

"And He (Jesus) said to the woman, thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace." (Luke 7:50)

A devoted heart is only one that has discovered the worth of Christ, and no one can be devoted until he has discovered it. It is not a question of time or attainment; the immediate and necessary consequence of this secret being divulged to your heart is to make it true to the One to whom it is so deeply indebted. Love makes much of its object, and counts it not self-sacrifice. Self drops off when my Saviour becomes the one Object of my heart. (Selected)

N.J. Hiebert # 2294

June 30

"Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto Thy name give glory, for Thy mercy and truth's sake." (Psalm 115:1)

Unbelief is not humility, but thorough pride. It refuses to believe God because it does not find in self a reason for believing. This is the very height of presumption. If, when God speaks, I refuse to believe, on the ground of something in myself, I make make (God) a liar. (1 John 5:10) When God declares His love, and I refuse to believe because I do not deem myself a sufficiently worthy object, I make Him a liar, and exhibit the inherent pride of my heart. The bare supposition that I could ever be worthy of aught save the lowest pit of hell, can only be regarded as the most profound ignorance of my own condition and of God's requirements. And the refusal to take the place which the redeeming love of God assigns me, on the ground of the finished atonement of Christ, is to make God a liar, and cast gross dishonour upon the sacrifice of the cross. God's love flows forth spontaneously. It is not drawn forth by my deserts, but by my misery. Nor is it a question as to the place which I deserve, but which Christ deserves. Christ took the sinner's place on the cross, that the sinner might take His place in the glory. Christ got what the sinner deserved, that the sinner might get what Christ deserves. Thus self is totally set aside, and this is true humility. No one can be truly humbled until he has reached heaven's side of the cross; but there he finds divine life, divine righteousness, and divine favour. (C.H. Macintosh)

N.J. Hiebert # 2295


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