Scriptural meditations on God's Word (5320 posted here) sent daily for 17 years -- njhiebert@sympatico.ca

Monday, December 05, 2005

Gems from December 2005

December 1

"Jesus our Lord . . . according as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue." (1 Peter 1:2-3)

Some Christians start out with Jesus Christ, then go looking for something better, some kind of "advanced Christianity." We will stray into all kinds of tangents looking for the "something more" that will transform our dull existence into spiritual reality. Sometimes it's a desire for something "deeper." 1 Peter 1:3 says that we have received "everything we need for life and godliness."


Christian maturity is not starting out with Jesus, then graduating to something better. The Christen life is starting with Christ, then spending the rest of eternity discovering more and more of what we already have in Him, more and more of the wonders of this Person "in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." (Colossians 2:3) (B. George)

N.J. Hiebert # 2448


December 2

"Apply thine heart unto knowledge. For it is a pleasant thing if thou keep them within thee; they shall withal be fitted in thy lips." (Proverbs 22:17,18)

The Spirit will never bring a scripture to our lips for use unless we have first possessed it in our hearts. (Edward Dennett)

N.J. Hiebert # 2449


December 3

"Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath; neither give place to the devil." (Ephesians 4:26,27)

Righteous anger is communion with God in His indignation against evil (See Mark 3:5), but even if anger produced in us by the Holy Ghost be nursed, it will soon pass into a natural feeling, and thus we are told, "Let not the sun go down upon thy wrath." And then the injunction follows, "Neither give place to the devil." To cherish a feeling against any one is to give place to the devil. (Edward Dennett)

N.J. Hiebert # 2450


December 4

"And they came to John, and said to him, Rabbi, He who was with Thee beyond the Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold, He baptizes, and all come to Him." (John 3:26)

Here was something calculated to test the heart of John the Baptist. Could he bear to lose all his disciples? Was he really, as he said, merely a voice, a nothing and a nobody? It is one thing to talk humbly and another to be humble, to speak about self-emptiness and to be self -emptied! John replied: "A man can receive nothing unless it be given him out of heaven." Let us seize and hold fast this great practical truth that nothing we have comes from ourselves, that we can do nothing and are nothing but what we are given. This realization would ever keep us humble.


The Baptist continued his reply by saying that he was not the Christ, the Bridegroom, but merely the friend of the Bridegroom and that in this role his joy was fulfilled. "He must increase but I must decrease." (John 3:28-30) Here lay the deep and precious secret of John's happiness and peace. His joy was not in his own work, not in gathering a number of disciples around himself, not in his personal influence or popularity. His pure and holy joy was to stand and hear the voice of the Bridegroom and to see others, to see his own disciples, to see all, flocking to that blessed One and finding all their joys in Him.

The abiding sense of God's goodness would ever keep us happy, and the remembrance that whatever goodness be in us or around us comes from God would ever keep us looking up. To be near Him, to have Him before the heart, to serve in His holy presence is the true secret of peace, the unfailing safeguard against envy and jealousy. (C.H. Mackintosh)

N.J. Hiebert # 2451


December 5

"And Elisha. . . cried, My father, my father. . . and he saw (Elijah) no more; and he took hold of his own clothes, and rent them in pieces. He took up also the mantle of Elijah that fell from him." (2 Kings 2:12,13)

Elijah's mantle fell down upon him (Elisha), because his servant had seen him going up to heaven. Now this mantle belonged to Elisha. Likewise we shall always have the power of the spirit with us if we are attached to Christ and if our eyes follow Him on high.
Elisha tears his own garments in two. They will henceforth serve him no longer, for he possesses Elijah's mantle, the double portion of his spirit. It is in this power that he will walk in the midst of Israel. May it be likewise with us! May we tear up our old garment after having put on Christ, that we may present Him in testimony to the world! (H.L. Rossier - Meditations on 2 Kings)

N.J. Hiebert # 2452


December 6

"He that hears you hears Me; and he that despises you despises Me; and he that despises Me despises him that sent Me." (Luke 10:16)

Christ is the ruler of His people. How does He rule them? By His Word, by His Spirit, according His truth. How do we show our subjection to Christ, and to His government? We show it by subjection to His word. People may talk of obedience to Christ, but obedience to Him is shown by obeying His word. They may talk about recognizing His headship here. We have His precious word, and all the truth that word unfolds to us, which is the command of our Ruler and of our Lord. I am to obey that word, whoever brings it to me, no matter if he is like the little messenger boy who brings a dispatch which conveys an order from the president to a general on the field.

The messenger boy is nothing, but he brings the message, and if the general were to despise the boy so much that he would not read his message, he would be despising the one who sent him. So it is in the house of God. Whoever brings me the word, the will of Christ, a message from Him, the Head and Lord of His people, am I to discard it because I despise the instrument? I despise Christ if I do that. True government means Christ's government, and He governs through His word, and He brings His word to us through any instrument He may see fit to use. (S. Ridout - Lectures on the Book of Judges)

N.J. Hiebert # 2453

December 7

"The first day of the week . . . came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you."
(John 20:19)

The first day of the week (Sunday) should be a vital part of the believer's life. Why? Consider some of the significant events that occurred on the first day: the resurrection of our Saviour, the revelation of Him as the risen Lord, the impartation of peace to His fearful disciples, the meeting of the early Church for the Remembrance Feast, the gathering of God's people for preaching and refreshment from God's Word. How important is "the first day" to us? (Bob Cretney)

Yesterday, today, forever,
Jesus is the same;
All may change, but Jesus never -
Glory to His name
.
- (A.B. Simpson)

N.J. Hiebert # 2454

December 8

"But we . . . are changed into the same image from glory to glory."

(2 Corinthians 3:18)

After the death of Gustavus the Great, king of Sweden, in 1632, the chief statesmen of the country met to decide the future government. Some proposed a republic. Others suggested the vacant throne be offered to the king of Poland. In the midst of the deliberations the Chancellor suddenly rose. "Let there be no talk of a republic or of a Polish king, " he said, "for the Great Gustavous has left an heir, a daughter 6 years of age." This was not generally known, and the statement was received with surprise. "How do we know that this is not a trick of yours?" one inquired. "We have never seen this child; we were not aware that Gustavous had one." "Wait a minute," replied the Chancellor, "and I will show you." Leaving the room, he returned with a little girl whom he placed upon the throne where only the rulers of Sweden might sit. The man who had expressed his disbelief pressed forward and gazed intently upon her face. Then, turning to the assembly, he said "Comrades, I see in this child the features of the Great Gustavous. Look at her nose, her eyes, her chin; she is indeed the daughter of our king." This was enough. Young as she was, they acclaimed her "Christina, Queen of Sweden."
Child of God, do you have the Father's likeness and the traits of His family? They mark you as a Christian and are easily discernible. As an heir of God and joint heir of Jesus Christ, you are to bear the image of our Lord. Your conduct and Christian character are features which should distinguish you as a child of the King. Friend, can the world see the family likeness in you? (P.R.V.)

May Christ be seen in me, O Lord, Hear Thou my humble plea;
O take me, fill me, use me, Lord, Till Christ be seen in me
. (DeHoff)

THE SUBJECTS OF THE KING SHOULD EVER DISPLAY THE MANNERS OF THE COURT.

Our Daily Bread, RBC Ministries, Copyright (1972), Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted permission.

N.J. Hiebert # 2455

December 9

"A man that hath friends must show himself friendly: And there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother." (Proverbs 18:24)

None complain so loudly of the lack of love and friendliness on the part of others as those who manifest very little of either themselves. He who busies himself to show love will receive it back again. He who is himself a friend will find friends to reciprocate his kindness. But the true Friend, ["A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born to adversity (Proverbs 17:17)], is ever such. His heart is unchanged by the slights of the objects of his devotion. "There is a Friend that sticketh closer than a brother." He always manifested love and grace in a world where all by nature were estranged from Him.

Let those who complain of lack of love on the part of fellow-saints imitate His holy example. Be concerned, not about receiving kindness, but about manifesting it, and "good measure, pressed down, shall men repay into your bosom." (H.A. Ironside - Notes on Proverbs)

N.J. Hiebert # 2456

December 10

"Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth." (Song of Solomon 1:2)

What unsuspecting, pure, and impassioned affection breathes in this remarkable address. It is like the artless, yet ardent, kindling of affection between the nearest kindred when they meet after a long absence. So engrossed is the heart with its object, that forms, ceremonies, and all surrounding circumstances are entirely lost sight of. The happy consciousness of the place which she has in His heart carries her away. How few there are in this world that one could so unformally and affectionately address: and yet this is the language of a saved sinner to the holy Saviour. Do we understand this? No doubts, no fears are in the heart that can thus address the divine Bridegroom - the glorified Jesus in heaven. (Andrew Miller - Song of Solomon)

N.J. Hiebert # 2457

December 11

"Now it came to pass in the days when the judges ruled, that there was a famine in the land . . . " (Ruth 1:1)

God desires truth in the inner man. When we come together in this place of blessing and there rejoice in what the Lord gives us, when we render Him due thanks and sing His praises; then He sees whether our hearts are upright or whether our words are far above the practical state of our hearts. Sometimes in His dealings with us He has to send a famine so that we might be conscious of our need and judge ourselves in His searching light. (H.L. Heijkoop - The Book of Ruth)

N.J. Hiebert # 2458

December 12

"Finally my brethren, rejoice in the Lord." (Philippians 3:1)

"Rejoice in the Lord." In a sense that sums up all the Apostle has to say: and as long as the saints are rejoicing in the Lord, they are safe. In Chapter 4:4, the Apostle writes even more strongly: "Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice!" Some People seem to think to be a Christian is a sad thing, with all joy taken away. It is quite the reverse. A Christian who is walking with the Lord is filled with joy: yes, he may even be sorrowful, "yet always rejoicing." This joy is not the light and "frothy" joy of this world. It is a joy that accords with the Greek word "semnos," a word that is almost impossible to translate into English: the dictionary gives the meaning as: "grave, serious." But the "semnos" man "has a grace and dignity not lent him from earth; but which he owes to that higher citizenship which is also his." And so only four verses after Philippians 4:4, we find the Spirit telling us to think on things that are semnos. (Translated honest in our English Bible). Our Lord Jesus said: "These things have I spoken unto you, that My joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full." (John 15:11). It is out Lord's own joy with which we rejoice, even now, down here. (G. Christopher Willis - Meditations on Philippians - September 1963)


N.J. Hiebert # 2459

December 13

"The cloud covered it (tabernacle) by day, and the appearance of fire by night. And when the cloud was taken up from the tabernacle, then after that the children of Israel journeyed: and in the place where the cloud abode there the children of Israel pitched their tents." (Numbers 9:16,17)

"I (Jesus) am the light of the world; he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life." (John 8:12)

Perplexity and uncertainty is very often the fruit of the working of the will. We are bent upon dong something which God does not want us to do at all - upon going somewhere that God does not want us to go. We pray about it, and get no answer; We pray again and again, and get no answer. How is this? The simple fact is that God wants us to be quiet - to stand still - to remain just where we are. Instead of racking our brain and harassing our souls about what we ought to do, let us do nothing, but simply wait on God.


This is the secret of peace and calm elevation. . . . if we move when we ought to rest, or rest when we ought to move, we shall not have the divine presence with us. (C.H. Mackintosh - Notes on Numbers)

N.J. Hiebert # 2460


December 14

"Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute, to the poor and thou shalt have treasure in heaven." (Luke 18:22)

Why did our Lord tell this young man to sell all that he had? He did not permit him to keep even ten per cent for himself. I do not recall that the Lord ever proposed this to anybody else. Why single out this poor man? It is because the Lord is acting here in the capacity of a skilled physician. When such is giving an examination, he finally puts his finger on a certain part; there is a wince and a groan; ah, that's it - he has located the trouble.


Our Lord is here diagnosing the case. He is going to make plain to this young man something about himself of which he was not conscious. In spite of all that lovely personality - that beautiful exterior - down beneath, there was a hidden malignancy at work. The Lord exposed it - COVETOUSNESS! Yes, there it was. With all its ugliness covered up by a beautiful veneer, there it was. That is the reason for our Lord's prescription to the young man to go and sell all that he had and give to the poor. Come, follow Me, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven. (C.H. Brown - A Gospel Address)

N.J. Hiebert # 2461


December 15

"The secret which the king hath demanded cannot the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, the soothsayers, show unto the king; but there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets, and maketh know to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days. But as for me, this secret is not revealed to me for any wisdom that I have more than any living."

(Daniel 2:27,28,30)

Daniel, when introduced into the presence of the king, is not elated; he conceals himself, so to speak, behind the glory of God. It is when we understand how to humble ourselves thoroughly, that we are truly exalted. If Daniel disappears, God Himself is manifested in him. Oh that we might have wisdom and spiritual power to hide ourselves thus behind Jesus, in order that He might be put into the foreground! Every such act is a great and precious triumph. (J.N. Darby)

N.J. Hiebert # 2462


December 16

"Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; or ministry, let us wait on our ministry: or he that teacheth, on teaching; or he that exhorteth, on exhortation." (Romans 12:6,7)

The importance of occupying the position given us to fill, and of exercising the special gift, or function in the body, bestowed upon us, cannot be too much pressed. Every Christian has his own place, which no one else can fill, and his own work, which no other can do; and the health and prosperity of the assembly depend upon the recognition and the practice of this truth. (Edward Dennett)

N.J. Hiebert # 2463


December 17

"Tell us, we pray thee, For what cause this evil is upon us: What is thine occupation? And whence comest thou? What is thy country? And of what people art thou?" (Jonah 1:8)

The presence of a Christian, a saint of God (for every true Christian is truly "a saint") - the presence of such a one should be a blessing to any company of people. He should be like a light shining in a dark place, a little candle to give light to those about him; but Jonah was very different. Rather than being a blessing to the company of men on that ship, he brought a curse with him. It was he who brought that storm, or at least God sent it for his sake. How very solemn a thing it is if God in dealing with us for our unfaithfulness and sin must bring trouble and distress to those about us! The Bible says truly, "None of us liveth to himself." (Romans 14:7)

We cannot say, "this is my own business and makes no difference to anybody else." Jonah's disobedience made a great difference to those mariners. They got into a terrible storm, they lost their cargo by throwing it overboard in order to try to save the ship, and all because of the sin of a saint of God. It is a very searching question to ask ourselves, "Am I a blessing or a curse in the circle where I move?" For certain it is, you have an influence one way or the other. True it is that God brought blessing out of all this sin and trouble, and those sailors learned to know the true God through the disobedient prophet. That does not at all excuse him, however, and the sad, sad answer to the mariners' questions was just this, if Jonah spoke the truth: "It is entirely for my cause. It is my fault, and only my fault that you have had all this danger and loss." May God deliver us from ever putting our friends and companions to sorrow and loss through our sin and unfaithfulness! (G.Christopher Willis - Lessons From the Book of Jonah)

N.J. Hiebert # 2464

December 18

"Tell us, we pray thee . . . What is thine occupation?" (Jonah 1:8)

The second question is a searching one also. Let us face it honestly, "What is thine occupation?" You may have heard of the man about whom it was said, "Yes, that man is a Christian, but he is not working at it." How many of us are Christians, but not working at it! It would be hard for the world to know of some of us whose first occupation is to be down here "to the praise of His glory." (Ephesians 1:14)

"And whence comest thou?" Very often we forget that we are "coming" from "the city of destruction," and that the world from which we have come is already condemned, that we no longer are of it, but that now our citizenship is in heaven. Too often nobody could guess that we are pilgrims and strangers down here (1 Peter 2:11), on our way to the Father's house.

"What is thy country?" This is a common question in China. How often foreigners are asked, "What is your honorable country?" Can we truthfully reply, "My honorable country is heaven!" Does our manner of life show this forth? Dear fellow-Christian, you and I are not of the world, even as the Lord Jesus Christ was not of the world. (John 17:16) Our citizenship is in heaven. (Philippians 3:20) May that question of the heathen sailors, on Jonah's ship, sink down deeply into our hearts. (G.C. Willis)

N.J. Hiebert # 2465

December 19

"Tell us, we pray . . . And of what people art thou?" (Jonah 1:8)

May God help us never to be ashamed to say, "I am of the people of God. By God's grace, I am a follower of the despised and rejected One, whom this world cast out and crucified." It is an old saying, "A man is known by the company he deeps." Let it be so in our case, may our friends, our associates and our companions ever be God's people. True, there are times when we are compelled to mingle with the people of the world, but when this is so, may we be like those saints of old, of whom it is recorded, "Being let go, they went to their own company." (Acts 4:23)
If a saint of God is walking in obedience, walking with his Lord, it should not be needful to ask such questions as these - they should be apparent to all men. May the breathing of our hearts be:

"Oh, that it might be said of me,
Surely thy speech betrayeth thee,
As a friend of Christ of Galilee
."

N.J. Hiebert # 2466

December 20

"And His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace." (Isaiah 9:6)

Many modern translations omit the first comma in this sentence, relegating the word "Wonderful" to the position of a mere adjective. What a beautiful truth is lost! Truly, His Name is Wonderful, but not just a wonderful Counsellor, but a title, used elsewhere in Scripture to mean "inscrutable", "beyond understanding". Let us remember to keep this as one of His names, denoting another aspect of His character, His intrinsic Being. Truly He is Wonderful. (A. Fiebig)

Wonderful Name He bears, wonderful crown He wears,
Wonderful love of my wonderful Lord
.

N.J. Hiebert # 2467

December 21

"Ye do show the Lord's death till He come." (1 Corinthians 11:26)

Of the four accounts of the Lord's Supper, only Paul mentions the showing of the Lord's death. Only on this side of the cross, do the emblems take on this full meaning. But what is so precious about remembering someone's death? It must be that I know that it should have been me on that cross, not Him. It must be that it was my sins that deserved such a penalty. It must be that He delivered me from wrath and banishment by being forsaken Himself. If I cannot remember these things, if I cannot weep tears of gratitude about them, if I cannot show them forth . . . woe is me. (Rick Morse)

N.J. Hiebert # 2468

December 22

"That on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience."

(Luke 8:15)

There may seem to the world to be fruits bright and blessed; but if people do not have Christ, they tire. There will be no enduring unless Christ has possession of the soul; but if He has, there will be abiding motive, and people will go on and "bring forth fruit with patience."

They that hear, keep going steadily on, having their motive for action in the Lord. Trouble may come into the Church, disappointment may arise, but they go on just the same, because they have Christ before them. For the Word they have heard and keep, connects them with Christ; and He is more than anything else. (Christian Truth - Vol. 19, January 1966)

N.J. Hiebert # 2469

December 23

"Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you." (1 Peter 5:7)

WITH GOD

To talk with God no breath is lost; - Talk on!
To walk with God no strength is lost; - Walk on!
To toil with God no time is lost; - Toil on!
Little is much, if God is in it;
Man's busiest day not worth God's minute.
Much is little every where,
If God the business doth not share.
So, work with God, - then nothing's lost;
Who works with Him does well and most.

(OLD ENGLISH VERSE - SENT BY RICHARD GORGAS - NOVEMBER 16, 2004)

N.J. Hiebert # 2470

December 24

"Golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints." (Revelation 5:8)

The Lord values our prayers more than we ourselves do! Many consider prayer to be a boring duty, difficult to carry on and of dubious value. Personal prayer life is neglected. Assembly prayer meetings are neglected or even done away with. Many will go to a concert or picnic but not to a night of prayer. They will spend two or three hours watching a movie or a sports event, but have never prayed that long. In heaven there are no movies, concerts or sports events. They aren't even mentioned! But our prayers are. God places them in golden bowls. The humble prayers of His saints are His special treasures. Are we doing all we can to help fill up those bowls? (Carl Knott)

N.J. Hiebert # 2471

December 25

"Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy." (Jude 24)

The Church will have her joy in Christ, but Christ will have His greater joy in the Church. The strongest pulse of gladness that is to beat for eternity will be in the bosom of the Lord over His ransomed bride. In all things He is to have the pre-eminence; and, as in all things, so in this, His joy in her will be greater than hers in Him. (J.G. Bellett)

N.J. Hiebert # 2472

December 26
"Thou art all fair, my love; there is no spot in thee." (Song of Solomon 4:8)

It is a blessed thing to cultivate in our hearts not only the sense of what God has done for us, but also what He in grace has made us to be for Himself. It is most blessed to get away from ourselves, and entering into the secret of God's presence, there learn what those sentiments are which fill His heart. The Spirit of God makes those who believe in Christ to rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory - 1 Peter 1:8 That is our side of this joy, but it is "meet that we should make merry, and be glad" (Luke 15:32) is His, for the Father has His joy as well, and it is boundless. He rejoices to have children near to Him - children who can enjoy God. "Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God"; and "we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement." (Romans 5:11) (W.T.P. Wolston)

N.J. Hiebert # 2473

December 27

"Christ is all and in all." (Colossians 3:11)

It is an important thing to preserve the balance of truth in our souls, and to give every part of God's Word and revelation its divinely ordered place. Our portion, then, is Christ Himself! And what a portion!
Now while it is blessedly true that it is not in our power to forfeit the possession of our portion, or to lose it by any folly of ours, it is equally true that the realization of its blessedness, the satisfaction of enjoying it, the consciousness of our union with Him who is our portion, all depend upon ourselves. It is only by the Holy Ghost who dwells in us that we have power. If He be grieved, His witness in this respect is for the time suspended in us; in that case He witnesses against us, that the failure which we have allowed may be judged, and He be free once more to pass the glories of Christ before our souls, and occupy us with them; thus we have fellowship with the Father and His Son Jesus Christ, and thus our joy is full. (W.T.T.)

N.J. Hiebert # 2474

December 28

"There is nothing better for me than that I (David) should speedily escape into the land of the Philistines."
(1 Samuel 27:1)

This was the language of David immediately after God had delivered him in a most remarkable manner from the hand of King Saul. For a long while Saul had been hunting David from place to place, with the full intention of putting him to death . . .
Has it never been so with us? In time of pressing need, we have cast ourselves upon God, and He did not fail us; but when the pressure was past, we got our eyes off God and upon the difficulties. It seemed as though we could not always expect help and deliverance; and then we began to parley with sin, and to try to justify ourselves for yielding. "There is nothing better," we thought, than a compromise; and we settled down to a position that was wholly dishonoring to God. While the Lord lives and reigns, it is downright unbelief on our part that would lead us to be satisfied with anything short of a real and compete obedience. "There is nothing better" means, in effect, the Lord is no longer able to hold me up.
May the Lord help us to ever be conscious of the fact that we always have in Himself a sure resource. In this connection it is nice to see what David himself brings before us.

"The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?" (Psalm 27:1)
"Though a host should encamp against me, my heart
shall not fear
." (Psalm 27:3)
"For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion (dwelling): in the secret of His tabernacle shall He hide me; He shall set me up upon a rock." (Psalm 2:5)
"Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart: Wait, I say, on the Lord." (Psalm 27:14)

(Christian Truth - Vol. 19)

N.J. Hiebert # 2475

December 29

"Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered Him, Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life." (John 6:67,68)

When Paul had come to the end of his pathway of service, and saw dark clouds gathering round, and all his work here threatened with failure, he could say with unshaken confidence, "I know whom if have believed."
When the clouds that Paul saw on the horizon had gathered heavy and dark, and the threatened failure had already set in, John had still a message for the worst day that can ever come - "And now, little children, abide in Him."
That is the stamp of God's own work. When the Father draws, He draws to Christ and nowhere else. It is not a place, a creed, a belief, but a Person.
The heart that is restlessly wandering, beating against the bars of doubt, needs the revelation of Christ to satisfy the deep need that causes this misery and unrest. But this is always God's end, the purpose for which He draws souls out of the place where all their lives have been lived without Christ." (S.H.H.)

N.J. Hiebert # 2476

December 30

"Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust." (2 Peter 1:4)

How do these "exceeding great and precious promises" make us "partakers of the divine nature"? I believe in this way: It is entering into and enjoying these exceeding great and precious promises (what God has done, is doing, and is going to do) as realities. The result is that I am so attracted and under the power of them that other things lose their charm. So we become more "imitators of God"; being occupied with the Object that is His; that is, that which occupies the heart of God. When we really lay hold on the promises that are ours, that hope works out in the life in a practical way, and we are seen to be "partakers of the divine nature." (C.H. Brown)

N.J. Hiebert # 2477

December 31

"He shall show, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; Who only hath immortality." (1 Timothy 5:16)

God is the only one who has immortality in Himself. When we speak of mortality, it only applies to the body. "The soul that sinneth, it shall die" (Ezekiel 18:4,20) means that each one shall die for his own sin: in other words, it is individual responsibility. (Extract)

N.J. Hiebert # 2478

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