Scriptural meditations on God's Word (5270 posted here) sent daily for 17 years -- njhiebert@sympatico.ca

Monday, March 01, 2004

Gems from March 2004

"The preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God." (1 Corinthians 1:18)

"There is no greater contrast than light and darkness; men who are born again in the Spirit and have life from God and men who still persist in unbelief and reject Jesus Christ, the Saviour. That is why an unbeliever cannot understand a believer. Anyone who professes to have become a child of God and have forgiveness of sins is looked upon as crazy.



"Someone has expressed it like this, - a learned man can understand an ignorant man for he was also once ignorant; even so a believer can understand an unbeliever for he was once an unbeliever. But an unbeliever cannot understand a believer because he has never had faith." (Taken from an old calendar page - anon)

N.J. Hiebert # 1809

March 1

"He hath made the earth by His power, He hath established the world by His wisdom, and hath stretched out the heavens by His discretion."

(Jeremiah 10:12)

O Lord my God! When I in awesome wonder,

Consider all the worlds Thy hands have made,
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder,

Thy pow'r throughout the universe displayed. - Carl Boberg

"Consider. Planet earth is moving in four directions at once. It is rotating on its axis at 29 miles a second (at the equator); revolving around the sun at 18.5 miles a second; moving with the solar system around the Milky Way at 12 miles a second; and revolving through the universe at 170 miles a second in the direction of the constellation Cygnus. Our God is an awesome God." (W. Ross Rainey)

N.J. Hiebert # 1810

March 2

"But David encouraged himself in the Lord his God." (1 Samuel 30:6)

"The Amalekites had attacked, and David and his men learned that their wives and children had been taken captive. They cried until they could cry no more. They were broken men. David was doubly distressed because the people blamed him. He stood alone! There was no one to whom he could turn. There was no one to offer him comfort. David did the only possible thing he could do. He 'encouraged himself in the Lord his God.' Perhaps you stand alone during severe trials and feel as David felt - alone and downhearted. Turn to the only One from whom you can derive strength and courage to go on. He will carry you through." (James Comte)

N.J. Hiebert # 1811

March 3

"Seekest thou great things for thyself? Seek them not." (Jeremiah 45:5)

"Baruch, to whom this admonition is directed, was a contemporary of Jeremiah. The limelight shone brightly on Jeremiah, but the darkness was shared by both of them. Jeremiah had his mountaintop experiences, but Baruch shared all his valleys. Did the lord give Baruch this warning because of a tendency towards self-pity and a possible difficulty with being less visible than Jeremiah? We need this admonition, too. Too often we struggle with the glory that others get, while we must stand back in the shadows. Like Baruch, let us not seek great things for ourselves; rather let us seek great things for God. Do we trust His judgment?" (Craig Funston)

N.J. Hiebert # 1812

March 4

"And all that believed were together" (Acts 2:44).

"Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together" (Hebrews 10:25).

"Sometimes bees have more sense than people. When cold winter winds howl, a colony of bees moves together into a compact ball of life. They cling to one another, warm one another, feed one another. And they survive the winter blasts together when they would perish if scattered." (Anon)

N.J. Hiebert # 1813

March 5

"Every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. For we are labourers together with God." (1 Corinthians 3:8,9)

"A traveler outside Cologne Cathedral was speaking of its beauties to a friend. 'Yes,' said the workman who overheard him, 'it is a fine building; it took us many years to finish it.'

"Took you!' exclaimed the tourist; 'Why, what had you to do with it?'"I mixed the mortar,' was the modest but proud rejoinder."It does not matter how humble our task may be, or how lowly our position, so long as we faithfully serve our Master. We cannot all preach sermons that will stir multitudes, but we can all preach sermons by our lives. We can at least make the path smother for some weary pilgrim." (T.C.N.L. - 1998)

N.J. Hiebert # 1814

March 6

"Let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath." (James 1:19)

"When we do not know ourselves, it is far easier to teach others that to govern self. Now the tongue is the most direct index of what is in the heart. We all fail in many things, and if we assume to teach others, our offenses are the more serious, and all the more deserve condemnation. Humility in the heart makes a man slow to speak: he waits rather to be taught, and for others to express their thoughts; he is more ready to learn that to teach." (J.N.D.)

N.J. Hiebert # 1815

March 7

"Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity." (Psalm 133:1)

"The blessed head loves all His members, and if we are drinking into His Spirit, if we are learning of Him, we shall love all likewise. No doubt, those who keep His commandments enjoy His special love - the love of complacency - and so we cannot but specially love those in whom we trace most of His blessed Spirit. But this is a totally different thing from loving people because they adopt our line of truth, or our peculiar views. It is Christ, and not self; and this is what we want, if we are to 'dwell together in unity.' " (C.H. Macintosh)

N.J. Hiebert # 1816

March 8

"All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works."

(2 Timothy 3:16,17)

THE BIBLE This book contains the mind of God, the state of man, the way of salvation, the doom of sinners, and the happiness of believers. Its doctrines are holy, its precepts are binding, its histories are true, and its decisions are immutable. Read it to be wise, believe in it to be safe, and practice it to be holy. It contains light to direct you, food to support you, and comfort to cheer you. It is the travelers map, the pilgrim's staff, the pilot's compass, the soldier's sword, and the Christian's charter. Here paradise is restored, heaven opened, and the gates of hell disclosed. Christ is its grand Object, our good its design, and the glory of God its end. It should fill the memory, rule the heart, and guide the feet. Read it slowly, frequently, and prayerfully. It is a mine of wealth, a paradise of glory, and a river of pleasure. It is given you in life, will be opened in the judgment, and be remembered forever. It involves the highest responsibility, will reward the greatest labor, and will condemn all who trifle with its sacred content." (Christian Truth - Vol. 21)

N.J. Hiebert # 1817

March 9

"The Philistines be upon thee, Samson." (Judges 16:20)

"Whenever a knowledge of divine truth ceases to humble us, and begins to make us careless as to united prayer, we may be certain that 'the Philistines be upon' us. If you see the prayer-meeting neglected by the many, or a feebleness in prayer, few participating - these are certain marks that the testimony, no matter how it may have been used of God in times past, is slipping from its true position. Unless it be recovered, all will lapse into Philistine formalism." (S. Ridout - Lectures on the book of Judges)

N.J. Hiebert # 1818

March 10

"Meditate therein day and night." (Psalm 1:2)

"There are some Christians who read a chapter (alas, a verse perhaps!) every morning as a sort of amulet (charm) to preserve them throughout the day. Is that meditating day and night on the word of God? What about our occupations? do you say? Well, let me ask you in return: In the midst of your occupations, is it the word given by God which nourishes you - that word given for your soul's enjoyment, and to guide you in the path of Christ? That is the way to 'have good success in our ways and prosper.' (Joshua 1:8) " (H.L. Rossier - Meditations on the Book of Joshua)

N.J. Hiebert # 1819

March 11

"If thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light." (Matthew 6:22)

"The object is wrong if you have not light for the step. There may be difficulties in going up a steep hill, but if the object before you is clear, you get over them as quickly as you can. This is what is meant by the expression

'This one thing I do' (Philippians 3:13). It is having one object, and the mind intent on accomplishing it. If it is so with you there will be sure to be light in the path - light not for ten years hence, but for this one step that is before you, and then for the next." (J.N. Darby -The Man of sorrows)

N.J. Hiebert #1820

March 12

"Who gave Himself for our sins, that He might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father." (Galatians 1:4)

"The world had entirely mistaken the divine aim and object of Christianity. God's object has been, and is, not the improvement of the world, or the enrichment of man in it, but his deliverance from it." (Christian Truth - Volume 13 - May 1960)

N.J. Hiebert # 1821

March 13

"But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat, nor with the wine which he drank..." (Daniel 1:8)

"Mediation on the Word and communion with the Lord must occupy the first place. Then after the heart has purposed, the decisive stand and faith laying hold on God for strength will follow. Then we shall find Him true as it was the case with Daniel. The faithfulness of the Lord becomes a blessed reality in the path of separation. We too shall find an increase in true wisdom, in heart knowledge and progress in the truth. Spiritual knowledge cannot be learned, but it is the gift of God. If we acknowledge our weakness and emptiness, and cast ourselves upon Him, He will give that knowledge we need." (A.C. Gaebelein - Daniel)

N.J. Hiebert # 1822

March 14

"Sit still." (Ruth 3:18)

"What excellent advice this is for those who have life from God, but who have not yet found rest for their souls, and who are trying desperately to find this rest by their own efforts. We know from experience how often we have thoughts about our uncleanness and destitution - about our condition and our shame - and how often we have tried to improve our ways and our lives. The great mystery of grace, however, is that our Redeemer has made our case His case! When we have discovered this, then we become silent and still. Then we turn away from ourselves and become occupied only with Him. This is what we must do. 


We must stand still and see the salvation of Jehovah (Exodus 14:13), just as Joshua did. We must let the Lord answer our accusers as the woman in John 8 did. The prodigal son had thoughts about himself while he was on the way home, and we may have thoughts about ourselves and our state as we return to the Father. But, as we enter the Father's house and see the Father's deep concern that we should be blessed, then we must stop acting. Then we must be still and see what He has prepared for us (Luke 15:22-24)" (H.L. Heijkoop - The Book of Ruth)

N.J. Hiebert # 1823

March 15

"He leadeth me." (Psalm 23:2)

"In the east the shepherd precedes the flock, to discover the greenest patches of grass, and the least stony path. So Jesus ever keeps Himself in front of the soul that trusts and loves Him. It is our part to allow as small a space as possible to intervene between His footsteps and our own." (A.M.)

N.J. Hiebert # 1824

March 16

"Looking unto Jesus." (Hebrews 12:2)

"Look away from yourself, or you will do one of two things equally bad: it will either depress you unduly, or it will swell you with foolish presumptions. And in either case, the soul will suffer. Look off from the world, from man, from self, from everything, and gaze on Christ." (A.M.)

N.J. Hiebert # 1825

March 17

"Christ Jesus... made Himself of no reputation..." (Philippians 2:5,7)

"A Christian general was once seen talking to a poor old woman. Friends remonstrated with him, saying, 'You ought to consider your rank.' The general answered, 'What if my Lord had considered His rank?" (Anon)

N.J. Hiebert # 1826

March 18

"That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord." (Romans 5:21)

"When I look back on the dealings of God in my own life, and see how many times I have hindered His plan for me, and how many times I have resisted His molding and got out of His will, I marvel at His patience, grace, and mercy. What a loving Father we have! Thank God he has not dealt with us according to our merits and our worthiness, but according to His constant patience and never-dying grace! We are so slow to learn, so prone to wander, and so apt to resist. We are quick to harden, and slow to soften." (J.B.)

N.J. Hiebert # 1827

March 19

"Thou (Zacharias) shalt be dumb, and not able to speak, until the day that these things shall be performed, because thou believest not My words, which shall be fulfilled in their season."
(Luke 1:20) "He (Zacharias) wrote saying His name is John... and his mouth was opened immediately, and his tongue loosed, and he spake, and praised God." (Luke 1:63,64)

"We see a beautiful thing in Zacharias's mouth being opened. Unbelief had shut it - faith opened it. God does not afflict willingly, but personally - with an end in view. It was very right that he should be put into silence for a time, but as soon as possible his mouth was opened, wider than ever he counted on." (J.G. Bellett - Notes on the Gospel of Luke)

N.J. Hiebert # 1828

March 20

"And these are ancient things. These were the potters, and those that dwelt among plants and hedges: there they dwelt with the king for his work."

(1 Chronicles 1:22.23)

"The people of God have yet other duties and other activities beside enlarging their borders as Jabez. Joab is 'the father ...of craftsmen' (v. 14). God has entrusted us with certain functions, humble but very useful in their place, to which we do well to pay attention without coveting higher things. We will thus be kept in humility. Among the sons of Shelah are found 'byssus-workers,' potters, and gardeners (vv. 21, 23). These were not noble occupations, but they owed their importance to the fact that these men '...dwelt with the king for his work.' Although very humble, they were his fellow workers within the limits that his work assigned to them; on this account the king retained them around his person; theirs was the great privilege, coveted in vain by many nobles and princes, of dwelling near him.



So it is with us too. Let us each fulfill our task; let us beware of coveting a high position among the people of God; let us rather be content with humble things. What our Lord asks is that we carry them out diligently. Let us be faithful in little things as long as we work together in His works. To say nothing of a future reward, we will obtain the inestimable present advantage of 'dwelling with the king' and of contemplating His face." (H.L. Rossier - Meditations on the Book of 1 Chronicles)

N.J. Hiebert # 1829

March 21

"A man's pride shall bring him low.' (Proverbs 39:23)

"Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright.' (Habakkuk 2:4)

"Some are blind as Laodicea, and know it not (Revelation 3:17). As ignorance blinds the mind, so pride is a blind before their ignorance, that they know it not. These have such a high opinion of themselves that they take it ill that any should suspect them as such; these of all men are most out of the way to knowledge; they are too good to learn of man, as they think, and too bad to be taught of God. The gate into Christ's school is low, and these cannot stoop: the Master Himself is so humble and lowly that He will not teach a proud scholar.



"Ah, poor creatures, what a sad change have they made, to leave the word, which can no more deceive them than God Himself to trust the guidance of themselves to themselves. 'He that is his own teacher,' said Bernard, 'is sure to have a fool for a master." (William Gurnall - The Christian In Complete Armour)

N.J. Hiebert # 1830

March 22

"God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble." (Psalm 46:1)

"University of Michigan's Rumeal Robinson toed the free throw line and sank his first shot to tie the score with Seton Hall at the 1989 NCAA basketball finals. One more and the Michigan Wolverines would be national champions. As Robinson stepped back to catch his breath, a teammate said to him, 'God helps those who help themselves.' Robinson returned to the stripe and calmly swished the winning free throw.



"When Ben Franklin wrote, 'God helps those who help themselves,' for Poor Richard's Almanac, he couldn't have known that it would still be used 200 years later. As helpful as those words may have been to a basketball player under pressure, they are not, as many suppose, in the Bible.


"That leads me to wonder: Whom does God help? Who gets His assistance? The Bible reveals that God helps the fatherless (Psalm 10:14), those who trust Him (Psalm 28:7), the poor and needy (Psalm 72:12), those who are weak in their faith (Mark 9:23,24), those who call on Him and seek His face (Psalm 27:9), and all believers in Jesus Christ (Hebrews 13:6).

"Does that sound like you? Do you need help because you can't make it on your own? God wants to help you. Maybe we should rephrase old Ben: God helps those who can't help themselves." (J.D.B.)

When driven and tossed by life's fiercest off storms,

Our strength all depleted and spent,
We rest in the strength of our Savior and God,

Whose help in that hour is sent.- D.J.D.

WHEN WE HAVE NOTHING LEFT BUT GOD, WE DISCOVER THAT GOD IS ENOUGH
(Our Daily Bread, RBC Ministries, Copyright (1989), Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted permission)

N.J. Hiebert # 1831

March 23

"All the widows stood by him weeping, and showing the coats and garments which Dorcas made while she was with them. (Acts 9:39)
"Well reported of for good works... if she have lodged strangers, if she have washed the saints' feet, if she have relieved the afflicted, if she have diligently followed every good work." 

(1 Timothy 5:10)

"What a blessing to have godly sisters in our assemblies! How often their practical input into our homes, families and assemblies goes unnoticed. They enrich out lives in so many ways! It is sad if we wait until they have gone before we give them recognition. Encourage a sister today! " (J. Paul)

N.J. Hiebert # 1832

March 24

"God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes." (Revelation 7:17)

"A little girl was walking with her father in the country. No neon signs, no car headlights or street lights marred the stillness of the crisp evening. As she looked into the deep blue velvet sky, studded with an array of diamonds which put the most dazzling Tiffany display to shame, she said, 'Daddy, if the wrong side of heaven is so beautiful, what do you think the right side will be like?'



"Some day all believers in Jesus Christ will see the 'right side' of heaven."And it is so beautiful that the articulate Apostle Paul could not describe it (2 Corinthians 12:1-4). However, the glory and beauty of the 'right side' of heaven will be the Lord Jesus Christ. Then it will be face to face with the One who is 'altogether lovely' (Song of Solomon 5:16)!" (Anon)

N.J. Hiebert # 1833

March 25

"And the Lord said unto him..." (1 Kings 19:15)

" 'Thus saith the Lord' settles everything. The moment the spirit apprehends God's promise, there is an end to the reasonings of unbelief. Unbelief puts circumstances between the soul and God; faith puts God between the soul and circumstances. This is a very important difference. May we walk in the power and energy of faith, to the praise of Him whom faith ever honors!" (C.H. Mackintosh)

N.J. Hiebert #1834

March 26

"On the morrow... the rod of Aaron... brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded almonds." (Numbers 17:8)

"Aaron's rod, cut off from the stalk and laid aside, looked like the others, until 'the morrow.' Then it showed abundant life. Everything was there: the bud, the newness of life; the blossom, the promise of fruit; the almonds, the fullness of life. So Christ's own resurrection life is the gift He gives to His own, ageless and timeless. Age only has to do with the body. In eternal life there is no age, no time, so that young and old in Christ can together enjoy His freshness, His fullness, and His fruit." (J. Boyd Nicholson)

N.J. Hiebert # 1835

March 27

"And ye are complete in Him, which is the head of all principality and power." (Colossians 2:10)

"God has no other answer to all the questionings of the mind of man as to spiritual verities than Christ; and no other is needed, for Christ is the answer to them all. He who refuses Christ refuses God's last word to mankind. he has said everything He has to say in sending Him into the world as the Giver of life and the propitiation for our sins. To turn from Him is to refuse the living incarnation of the Truth and to shut oneself up to error and delusion." (H.A. Ironside)

N.J. Hiebert # 1836

March 28

"Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice." (Philippians 4:4)

"It is the Lord's mind that His children should now, even in this world of sorrow and death, be happy. He has not only created us in Christ Jesus, but we are blessed with all spiritual blessings in Him: and the Holy Ghost says, "Rejoice evermore."



"The source of happiness, then, is the Lord Himself; and the secret of happiness is believing on Him whom we see not (1 Peter 1:8). The measure of happiness we are entitled to enjoy is as unlimited and boundless as glory itself, 'joy unspeakable and full of glory.' Jesus desired that we might have His joy fulfilled in ourselves, and Scripture is written that our 'joy may be full.' " (Anon)

N.J. Hiebert # 1837

March 29

"I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears." (Psalm 34:4)

"The Lord oftentimes works to deliver us from our fears before He delivers us from our foes. Here is a man who was delivered from the fear of the trouble, before he was delivered from the trouble. It is the discovery of what God is. It is the soul deepening in its acquaintance with God, no matter what the difficulties may be." (W.T.P Wolston - Handfuls of Purpose)

N.J. Hiebert # 1838

March 30

"My grace is sufficient for thee" (2 Corinthians 12:9).

"It is God's rule of action to choose the weak things. Everything must rest on God's power, otherwise God's work cannot be done according to His mind. One can hardly believe that one must be feeble to do the work of God; but Christ was crucified in weakness, and the weakness of God is stronger than man. For the work of God we must be weak, that the strength may be of God, and that work will last when all the earth shall be moved away." (J.N. Darby - The Man of Sorrows)

N.J. Hiebert # 1839

March 31

"Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life." (Proverbs 4:23)

"Just as an acorn is a tree looking for a chance to grow, so attitudes are actions in seed form. Bad attitudes are evil deeds looking for a place to happen. Good attitudes are solutions looking for a problem to solve. In each case, there is fruit that corresponds with the root and branch. This is the law of reproducing - 'after its kind.' Good always produces good, and evil always produces evil." (Choice Gleanings)

N.J. Hiebert # 1840

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