Scriptural meditations on God's Word (5330 posted here) sent daily for 17 years -- njhiebert@sympatico.ca

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Gems from August 2009

August 1

"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)

We have been given God's inspired Word. Its work is to bring us to spiritual maturity (2 Timothy 3:17). Our responsibility is:

- To diligently study it;
- Read it the way it has been given (in its context);
- Spend time meditating on what it says;
- Compare it with the rest of Scripture.

In this way, we will "rightly divide" it so that we can apply it to ourselves and teach it to others. Such diligent working on our part will mean we will not be ashamed when we see Him - the Author of it all. (David Croudace)

N.J. Hiebert - 3782

"Did not our heart burn within us, while He talked with us by the way?" (Luke 24:32)

Go with me, Master, by the way,
Make every day a walk with Thee;
New glory shall the sunshine gain,
And all the clouds shall lightened be.
Go with me on life's dusty road
And help me bear the weary load.

Talk with me, Master, by the way;
The voices of the world recede,
The shadows darken o'er the land,
How poor am I, how great my need.
Speak to my heart disquieted
Till it shall lose its fear and dread.

Bide with me, Master, all the way,
Though to my blinded eyes unknown;
So shall I feel a Presence near
Where I had thought I walked alone.
And when, far spent, the days decline,
Break Thou the bread, dear Guest of mine!
(Annie Johnson Flint)

N.J. Hiebert - 3783

August 2

"Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying,that it may minister grace unto the hearers." (Ephesians 4:29)

There are words that heal and words that hurt. An article told of a little, left-handed girl who was teasingly told that left-handed people don't go to heaven. This wounded the child's sensitive spirit and took her years to overcome. James 3:11 asks, "Does a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?" Harsh or condemning words are cruel and intimidating, whereas good words will inspire and build up. May we carefully think, before blurting careless words.

May we use our speech in an honourable way. (E. Dyck - provided by a reader B.R.)

Hurtful words oh, let them never,
From our tongues unbridled slip,
May we heed the Spirit's warning,
Set a guard at heart and lip. (Anon)

N.J. Hiebert - 3784

August 3

"And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour." (Luke 1:46,47)

Here was a spontaneous burst of praise and worship, occasioned by Mary's understanding that she was to be the mother of the Lord. Notice that both components of Mary's inner self - soul and spirit together - formed this exaltation. There is a need for both in our worship. May our soul's emotion and our spirit's understanding combine that there might be fullness in our adoration. Paul said, "I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also," (1 Corinthians 14:15).

O Lord, we know it matters not how sweet the song may be;
No heart but of the Spirit taught makes melody to Thee.

N.J. Hiebert - 3785

August 4

"Jesus saith unto him (Thomas), I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me." (John 14:6)

"Without the way there is no going;
Without the truth there is no knowing;
Without the life there is no living.
I am the way which thou oughtest to follow,
The truth which thou oughtest to trust,
The life which thou oughtest to live":

The inviolable way,
The infallible truth,
The endless life.

He is the way in the practical sphere,
The truth in the intellectual sphere,
The life in the spiritual sphere:

The way out of sin, The way through life, The way home to God.

The claims implicit in the words of verse 6 are exclusive, absolute, universal; and they demonstrate the truth that Christianity is Christ.

Platonism could exist without Plato, Buddhism without Buddha, Confucianism without Confucius; But Christianity could not exist without our risen Lord.

He not only sets forth the ideal, but is Himself the dynamic Power by which alone it can be realized (Galatians 2:20). (Henry Durbanville - His Last Words)

N.J. Hiebert - 3786

August 5

"None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him: for the redemption of their soul is precious, and it ceases forever." (no payment is ever enough).
(Psalm 49:7,8)

"The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin."
(1 John 1:7)

Different Conversions

It is sweet to inspect the way in which the light of God approached and entered the soul. Sometimes it was gentle; sometimes it was full of force and rapidity; sometimes it intimated a work more fully on the heart; and sometimes a work more on the conscience or understanding. But it was always God's work, that we know, though the material operated on may have been various, and the mode of operation various.The Eunuch was evidently in the hand of God before Philip met him - he was under the drawings of the Father (John 6). And that his heart was deeply engaged is evident, because he forgot the common order, of the world, when he bid Philip come up to him in his chariot. He waited for no introduction. The stranger was no stranger, since he referred to that subject which at that moment was everything to his heart. He was another Zaccheus, who forgot his place in society, and pressed through the crowd after Jesus.

Look at Saul. He was full of religious zeal - the zeal of an inquisitor.

Look at Cornelius. He was full of religious devotion - gentle, benevolent, disposed (instead of persecuting others) to judge that all others were better than himself.

All of them equally needed Jesus. There was no life in any or for any, but through Jesus. (J.G. Bellett)

N.J. Hiebert - 3787

August 6

"That the excellency of the power may be of God and not of us." (2 Corinthians 4:1-7)

In the days of John Wesley, lay preachers with limited education would sometimes conduct the church services. One man used Luke 19:21 as his text: "Lord, I feared Thee, because Thou art an austere man." Not knowing the word austere, he thought the text spoke of "an oyster man."He explained how a diver must grope in dark, freezing water to retrieve oysters. In his attempt, he cuts his hands on the sharp edges of the shells. After he obtains an oyster, he rises to the surface, clutching it "in his torn and bleeding hands." The preacher added, "Christ descended from the glory of heaven into . . . sinful human society, in order to retrieve humans and bring them back up with Him to the glory of heaven. His torn and bleeding hands are a sign of the value He has placed on the object of His quest."

Afterward, 12 men received Christ. Later that night someone came to Wesley to complain about unschooled preachers who were too ignorant even to know the meaning of the texts they were preaching on. The Oxford-educated Wesley simply said, "Never mind. The Lord got a dozen oysters tonight."

Our best may not always measure up to the standards of others. But God takes our inadequacies and humble efforts and uses them for His glory. (CINDY HESS KASPER)

The Master can use what you have to offer,
Though you may consider it small;
His work here on earth is done through His children,
So give Him your best, give your all. (HESS)

Do what you can where you are with what you have.

N.J. Hiebert - 3788

(Our daily Bread, RBC Ministries, Copyright (2008), Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted permission.)

August 7

"And the angel of the Lord came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee." (1 Kings 19:7)

Is it not good and comforting to know that the angel of the Lord came again the second time? We never reach the place where we pass beyond the compassion of our God: His compassions fail not; they are new every morning; never tiring of us, always strong for our help.

There have been times for nearly all of us when we have felt the truth of the angel's word, "The journey is too great for thee"; but have we not always found the Bread of Life and the Water of Life ready for our sustenance? And in the strength of that meat we have gone on, and shall go, on unto the Mount of God. (Amy Carmichael - Rose From Brier)

N.J. Hiebert - 3789

August 8

"I being in the way, the Lord led me. . . ." (Genesis 24:27)

Everything depends on our being in the way. God has not promised to lead and to bless us when we are in the wrong way. Sometimes the way seems long and hard and we may grow fearful that we have missed it. A traveler in the jungle said to his guide, "But there is no path, no road, no way." The guide replied, "There is no road, I am the way!" Our Lord is not the way-shower, He is THE WAY. When we abide in Him, we need no chart or compass. The Holy Spirit has come to guide us into all truth. He is the One called alongside to help. We may be perplexed at times and see not the way ahead but let us take our bearings and, if our hearts condemn us not, then let us take heart and keep going. We being in the way, He will lead us. (Vance Havner - All the Days)

N.J. Hiebert - 3790

August 9

"And without controversy, great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory." (1 Timothy 3:16)

Sandu Sundar Singh was one who had an experience similar to that of Paul. When this great Hindu saint was visiting England a modernistic professor asked him to explain what there was in Christianity that he could not find in his Hindu religion that cause him to change his faith. He answered simply, "IT WAS CHRIST!" The professor wasn't satisfied. "What teaching or doctrine is there in Christianity distinct from that of your former faith," he asked again. The Hindu saint replied, "It wasn't a teaching or a doctrine. It was THE LIVING CHRIST!" Still the professor objected, "Perhaps I haven't made my meaning clear. What is there in the philosophy of Christianity different from the philosophy of Hinduism which caused you to embrace Christianity?" "IT WAS CHRIST!" was still his answer. Not just a creed, or a doctrine, or a philosophy, but a TRANSFORMING CHRIST - crucified, risen, ascended, interceding, and coming again! Christ, divinely revealed to our hearts by the Holy Ghost - Christ in us the hope of glory! (MOUNTAIN TRAILWAYS FOR YOUTH)

"And Thomas answered and said unto Him, My Lord and my God." (John 20:28)

N.J. Hiebert - 3791

August 10

"He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love."
(1 John 4:8)

When I say, "God is love," what do I mean by it? Why this, that God sent His only-begotten Son that we might have life in Him. We still carry about the old nature; but, blessed be God, many a time as Satan has caught me, he has never destroyed me; there is the propitiation, - I am inside, sheltered by the blood, and forgiven. (GLEANINGS of G.V. WIGRAM)

N.J. Hiebert - 3792

August 11

"God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ." (Acts 2:36)

"That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that that Jesus Christ is Lord."
(Philippians 2:10.11)

THINGS THAT ACCOMPANY SALVATION: SUBMISSION AND OBEDIENCE

Jesus spoke to Saul of Tarsus on the Damascus road saying, "I am Jesus, whom thou persecutest" (Acts 9:5). Saul replied, "What shall I do, Lord?" (Acts 22:10). Addressing Jesus as Lord at the moment of his conversion, Saul recognized His authority and manifested his own surrender, his submission to Him as Lord and Master, and his willingness to obey and serve Him.

Surrender of one's self to Christ as Saviour, and submission and obedience to Him is the very essence of Christianity - the name Christian means one who has become a follower and disciple of Christ. Therefore obedience and submission to Christ are definite things which accompany salvation and should be found in all who say they are Christians.

Have you ever thought that we are to accept Christ as our Lord, not just as our Saviour from sin and judgment? The One whom we have accepted as Saviour is also the One to whom God has given the place of Lord over all. Something is wrong if we take Christ as our Saviour to get all the benefits of His work on the cross for us and then fail to submit to Him as our Lord and Master in devoted obedience.

To accept Jesus as as Lord means to acknowledge His rights and authority over me, to surrender my will to Him, and to endeavor to please and serve Him. This is evident from the Lord's words, "Why call ye Me Lord, Lord, and do not the things that I say?" (Luke 6:46). He expects us to do what He desires and His desires are plainly expressed in the Bible. (R.K. CAMPBELL)

N.J. Hiebert - 3793

August 12

"They looked unto Him, and were lightened."
(Psalm 34:5)

O Lord! we would delight in Thee,
And on Thy care depend,
To Thee in every trouble flee,
Our safe unfailing Friend.

When human cisterns all are dried,
Thy fulness is the same,
May we with this be satisfied,
And glory in Thy name
.
(RYLAND -1777)

Which would you rather have, a smooth path, or a path so rough that the Lord is compelled to show His face to you every step of the way?

Christ wept; but He wept as in the sight of God. . . . Let us see to it that the sorrows we have flow from Himself, and flow toward Him in God; they will be all the deeper, I am sure, but what is from God and to God is sustained by God, and so we can give thanks always for all things.

"What pleases Thee, Lord, pleases me" is a grand motto for rest and peace and quiet, and for the stopping of all repining about what we have not got.

It is a great thing for each to be . . . ready to act on and from his own responsibility, but never going beyond that which he sees to be his own duty, never acting under the light which others have. . . . I would rather act under God's measure of light vouchsafed to me, or not act, because I had none such, than be the one to carry out the mind of any man, without my being assured his mind was God's mind for me. (G.V. WIGRAM - FOOTPRINTS for PILGRIMS)

N.J. Hiebert - 3794

August 13

"For whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted." (Luke 14:11)

GOD'S WAY

"The way to be master is to be servant;
The way to get up is to get down;
The way to receive is to give;
The way to be rich is to be poor;
The way to be wise is to be a fool;
The way to be exalted is to abase one's self;
The way to live is to die."
(ANON)

N.J. Hiebert - 3795

August 14

"And some said, what will this babbler say? other some, he seemeth to be a setter forth of strange gods: because he (Paul) preached unto them Jesus, and the resurrection."
(Acts 17:18)

CHANGED

Christ's resurrection:

- Changed Mary from a mourner into a messenger;
- Changed Thomas from a doubter into a believer;
- Changed Peter from a denier into a preacher, and,
- Changed Paul from a persecutor into a missionary.

The early Christians went forth preaching "Jesus, and the resurrection" (Acts 17:18). Some mocked, some procrastinated, and some believed. For those who believed, the event became a personal experience, a cleansing, life-changing, transforming experience!

From the empty tomb of our Lord Jesus Christ has flowed the a warm gulf stream of salvation which has changed the lives of millions of people. Has it changed yours? (SELECTED)

N.J. Hiebert - 3796

August 15

"Him that cometh to me, I will in no wise cast out."
(John 6:37)

No limit is set to the duration of this promise. It does not merely say, "I will not cast out a sinner at his first coming," but, "I will in no wise cast out." The original reads, "I will not, not cast out," or "I will never, never cast out." The text means, that Christ will not at first reject a believer; and that as He will not do it at first, so He will not to the last.

But suppose the believer sins after coming? "If any man sin we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous." But suppose that believers backslide? "I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely: for Mine anger is turned away from him." But believers may fall under temptation! "God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it." But the believer may fall into sin as David did! Yes, but He will "purge them with hyssop, and they shall be clean; He will wash them and they shall be whiter than snow;" "From all iniquities will I cleanse them."

"Once in Christ, in Christ for ever,
Nothing from His love can sever."

"I give unto My sheep," saith He, "eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand." What sayest thou to this, O trembling feeble mind? Is not this a precious mercy, that coming to Christ, thou dost not come to one who will treat thee well for a little while, and then send thee about thy business, but He will receive thee and make thee His bride, and thou shalt be His for ever? Receive no longer the spirit of bondage again to fear, but the spirit of adoption whereby thou shalt cry, Abba, Father! Oh! the grace of these words: "I will in no wise cast out." (DAILY READINGS - C.H. SPURGEON)

N.J. Hiebert - 3797

August 16

"Yet man is born unto trouble, as the sparks fly upward."
(Job 5:7)

THE PREVALENCE OF SORROW

"Man is born to sorrow as the sparks fly upward.

- All history narrates it;
- All poetry sings of it;
- All biography confesses it;
- All experience teems with it;
- There is not one beating heart among us all that does not know it.

And mark that while righteousness brings blessedness and peace, it does not bring exemption from life's bitter trials."

So said a great preacher of the Victorian era; and the testimony of the Bible and the experience of the saints right down the centuries bear witness to the truth of his words. Philosophers may deride the third chapter of Genesis, but they cannot account for the facts of life without its aid. For that little section of the Book of God not only explains how sin came into the world, but also throws light on the sorrow which ever accompanies it (Genesis 3:16,17)

In a world which has been completely disarranged by sin, the experience of sorrow in one form or another is inevitable; that nevertheless God, Whose prerogative it is to bring good out of evil, uses it for the enrichment of the character and the deepening of the spiritual life of His people; that indeed it is an indispensable prerequisite in all who would attain to skill in comfort's art, and who would strengthen those that mourn. In other words, sorrow is common, purposeful, beneficent. (HEAVEN'S CURE FOR EARTH'S CARE)

N.J. Hiebert - 3798

August 17

"Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment."
(John 12:2-3)

In this passage John points out three postures of those who drew near to the Lord;
- Serving,
- Sitting, and,
- Kneeling.

The centre of attraction was Jesus, their Master and Lord. We might have thought it would be Lazarus, back from the dead, totally alive. But without their Lord's intervention there would have been no desire to;

- Serve,
- No resurrection life,
- No ability to to sit in His presence, and,
- Certainly no wish to celebrate Him in worship.

He is all in all. May we too be motivated to serve, sit and to kneel in worship at His feet. (DREW CRAIG)

More about Jesus would I know,
More of His grace to others show,
More of His saving fullness see,
More of His love who died for Me
.
(HEWITT)

N.J. Hiebert - 3799

August 18

"And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels."
(2 Thessalonians 1:7)

The enemy has, of course, no real good or blessing to hold out; but he can and and does work most effectively through fear of evil, especially where the conscience is bad or gets troubled. Therein lies his great power in awakening terror, availing himself of God's own threatened judgments on a guilty world. He may deceive the unbeliever by flattering him with false peace and false hopes; from this the believer is freed by the gospel, but if not filled with the hope of Christ, he might easily be distressed by the pressure and the variety and the continuance of affliction, especially if Satan got him under the fear that they were judicial inflictions from God on the world in which he was involved like others.

Where the heart is kept in peace and confidence before God, the mind can judge soundly. Fear unnerves the soul that is occupied with painful circumstances and throws all into confusion; for God and the word of His grace no longer guide, in the calm trust of a love that never fails, and that gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (W. KELLY - THE EPISTLE TO THE THESSALONIANS)

N.J. Hiebert - 3800

August 19

"In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace."
(Ephesians 1:7)

"If we walk in the light, as He is in the light . . . the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin."
(1 John 1:7)

"I can never forgive myself"! Are you struggling with some past failure which cannot be changed? You have come to the Lord in brokenness and honesty, confessing that sin and, yet you still cannot forgive yourself? His blood, not your remorse, is what cleanses from sin - from all sin. Simply take God at His Word. Don't try to earn what God has already given you; rejoice in what you have in Christ - forgiveness, full and free! (DAVID CROUDACE)

This is my story, to God be the glory,
I'm only a sinner saved by grace
.
(J.M. GRAY)

N.J. Hiebert - 3801

August 20

"O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth (or displayed, or painted, or portrayed, or depicted), crucified among you?"
(Galatians 3:1)

Paul had told them the story of that terrible day at Golgotha outside the gates of Jerusalem when the Lord Jesus Christ was crucified. Paul had told them that story till the Galatians saw it all. They saw the mocking, the scourging, the crown of thorns, the purple robe. They saw the holy Son of God go forth bearing His cross. They saw Him stripped of His clothes, and those cruel nails driven through His hands and feet. They saw Him hanging on the cross between two thieves and they gazed on all His agony. Then they had watched the sun darkened, and they had heard that bitter, bitter cry, "Eli, Eli, lama Sabachthani," - "My God, My God, why has thou forsaken me?"

They had seen all this, even portrayed before their very eyes. They had heard it all. They had heard that cry, "It is finished." But how little had it entered into their souls! True, no living man has ever known the depths of sorrow and anguish that our Lord Jesus suffered when the Lord "laid on Him the iniquity of us all" (Isaiah 53:6). No eye has ever seen the load our Saviour bore in those hours of darkness and not one can ever measure the depths of bitterness in that bitter cry,"Why hast Thou forsaken Me?"

But this had all been portrayed before the eyes of the Galatians. They had seen it. They knew what Paul meant when he wrote "Grace to you and peace, from . . . our Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for out sins."

That is the price their sins had cost our Lord Jesus Christ - HIMSELF!.
God is satisfied with that price, but the "senseless Galatians" had forgotten that great Saviour portrayed before them, and they wanted to add their own works, circumcision, and the law, to the price that Christ had paid.
(MEDITATIONS on GALATIANS or BEAUTIFUL GRACE - G.C, WILLIS)

N.J. Hiebert - 3802

August 21

"For whosever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all." (James 2:10)

Jesus declared the second great commandment is "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself." James designates this the royal law. It sums up man's responsibility to his neighbour. He who fulfills it will love all men and look with contempt on none. Therefore, to have respect to persons, preferring one above another, is to violate the letter and spirit of this sacred precept, and so to commit sin and be convicted of the law as a transgressor.

For such an one to pretend to be righteous before God was sheer folly. The law was violated already and so he had no title to expect blessing on the ground of legal obedience. It is not necessary to break every commandment of the law in order to stand condemned as a criminal in the sight of God. To offend in one point is to be guilty of all. The slightest infringement of the law indicates the self-will and insubjection of the heart. Suspend a man over a precipice by a chain of ten links; how many of these need to snap to plunge him into the abyss below? The breaking of the weakest link shatters the chain, and the man falls to his doom.
The same law which forbade adultery, prohibited murder. One need not be guilty of both to be under judgment. To violate either command marked one out as a transgressor of the law. How hopeless then the efforts of anyone to be justified on the ground of his own obedience! (H.A. IRONSIDE - NOTES ON JAMES)

N.J. Hiebert - 3803

August 22

"God who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved)."
(Ephesians 2:4,5)

The display of the grace in Christ did not hinder the wickedness in Judas, and the display of Judas' wickedness did not hinder the Lord's grace.

The sin of Judas was so black because it was in the presence of grace. There was a constant incessant hardening in the presence of Jesus. He took the money that grace gave the Lord, to live upon, and he went on and on till he came to that point where grace was most fully manifested. Then his wickedness comes to the highest point. Satan enteres into him; he goes and kisses Him when he had betrayed Him; he uses the familiarity grace had given him with Christ to betray Him. (BILBLE TREASURY)

N.J. Hiebert - 3804

August 23

"For God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man perceiveth it not."
(Job 33:14)

"If we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged."
(1 Corinthians 11:31)

Watchful Love

God always sends a testimony before the thing itself. He does not strike before He warns. It is so in His dealings with with us every day. What Christian has a chastening upon him before he is admonished of the Spirit of God? There is always a sense of wrong, and a lack of communion sensible to the spirit before the Lord inflicts the blow which tells of His watchful love over our careless ways. He gives the opportunity, if one may say so, of setting ourselves morally right; and if we do not heed the teaching, then comes the sorrow. (SELECTED - TCNL)

N.J. Hiebert - 3805

August 24

"For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feelings of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." (Hebrews 4:15,16)

When Christ had gone into heaven, the way of approach for us was made through the rent veil of His flesh, and He made His throne a throne of mercy. If free to approach boldly, is it anything in self that gives you liberty? No; it comes forth from Him, through the blood sprinkled there. You could not have right to say, even, "God be merciful to me a sinner," unless you knew the blood to be there. In no other way could you have got into a place where the light is never eclipsed, having always boldness there, in virtue of the rent veil. (GLEANINGS FROM the TEACHING of G.V. WIGRAM)

N.J. Hiebert - 3806

August 25

"But they cried out, Away with Him, away with Him, crucify Him. Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, we have no king but Caesar. Then delivered he Him therefore unto them to be crucified."
(John 19:15,16)

Pilate, the people, and the Lord - these are the three parties actively or passively involved in the diabolical actions of these hours. Pilate, the Roman governor, the Gentile, was at least partly aware of the seriousness of this moment; he would never have taken so much trouble to speak for the Lord and defend Him before the people if he had not been spell bound by this divine Person. Still, he loved honour and human favour; so, as long as there was still time, his heart did not reach a decision. To him particularly the words of the Lord apply: "For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?" (Matthew 16:26). Pilate had offered up the Lord and his own soul for the favour of Caesar, but after only a few short years, this favour too was gone.*** (FRITZ VON KIETZELL - BEHOLD the LAMB of GOD)

*** According to history, in the year 36 A.D., six years after the Lord's crucifixion, Pilate fell into disgrace with Caesar; his life ended in suicide or execution.

N.J Hiebert - 3807

August 26

"The last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried saying, if any man thirst, let him come unto Me and drink."
(John 7:37)

"Severe water shortages affecting 400 million people today will affect 4 billion in 2050," warns a UN report issued in 2003. This alarming statistic regarding the shortage of physical water is of deep concern. How thankful we should be for Jesus' words about the "Water of Life." There is an abundance of it available today for the spiritually thirsty who realize they can only be satisfied by the One who said, "Come unto me and drink." Will you come for a soul-satisfying drink of the everlasting Water of Life today? (A.P. MCINTEE)

Is the wilderness before thee?
Desert land where drought abides?
Heavenly springs shall there restore thee,
Fresh from God's exhaustless tides
.
(J.N. DARBY)

N.J. Hiebert - 3808

August 27

"And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and is set on fire of hell."
(James 3:6)

This little member, the tongue, is likened to a fire which, though small in the beginning, proves devastatingly ruinous as its results spread far and wide. A word has tremendous power for good or ill.

All species and varieties of birds and beasts, even slimy serpents and creatures of the sea, have been tamed by patient handling and attention. But no man can tame his own tongue. It is an irrepressible rebel, an insubject and wicked malefactor, capable of stirring men to every kind of iniquity, and "full of deadly poison." We speak of a scandal-monger as having a serpent tongue, and the simile is in full accordance with the damage such an evil speaker inflicts. The amazing thing is that even after one has been brought to know the Lord, he still finds he has trouble with his tongue. This is because of the fact that the believer has two natures: the old, corrupt nature inherited from the first Adam, the head of the old creation; and the new and holy nature received from the Last Adam, the head of the new creation.

Such is the power of the old nature that unless there is constant watchfulness and unceasing identification by faith with Christ in His death to sin, it will manifest itself through the tongue long after other evil propensities have been brought into subjection through the power of the cross as applied to the flesh.
(H.A. IRONSIDE - NOTES ON JAMES)

N.J. Hiebert - 3809

August 28

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

True service is love in work clothes.

To gain self control, give Christ control!

Our love has limits but God's love is boundless.

Contentment is realizing that God has already given me all I need.

Attachment to Christ is the secret of detachment from the world.

Confession is the soil in which forgiveness flourishes.

(SOME THOUGHTS TO CONSIDER - R.K.)

N.J. Hiebert - 3810

August 29

"Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth."
(Proverbs 27:1)

D.L. Moody said one of the greatest mistakes he ever made occurred October 8, 1871. On that night he addressed the largest crowd he had ever spoken to in Chicago. His message dealt with the trial of Jesus in Pilate's hall, and was based on the text, "What then shall I do with Jesus?" He concluded his sermon by saying, "I wish you would take this text home with you and seriously consider it, and next Sunday we will speak on the cross, and we will decide what we should do with Jesus." Speaking of this incident later, Moody called it a tragic error and "one of the greatest mistakes of my life; for I never saw that congregation again." When the sermon was finished, he asked Mr. Sankey to sing, "Today the Saviour Calls." Almost prophetically the third verse ran:

"Today the Saviour calls; for refuge fly;
The storm of justice falls and death is nigh
."

It was the last song sung in that hall, for even as Sankey sang, his voice was drowned out by the clanging of fire engine bells in the street. It was the night of the great Chicago fire, in which Mr. Moody's hall was left in ashes and in which one thousand perished, some of them undoubtedly from that audience. Moody said he learned the lesson, "When preaching Christ, press for an immediate and definite decision." He explained, "I would rather lose my right hand than ever again give an audience a week or a day to decide for Christ." (SELECTED)

Don't put off till tomorrow what you should do today.

"God has promised forgiveness to your repentance; but He has not promised tomorrow to your procrastination."
(AUGUSTINE)

N.J. Hiebert - 3811

August 30

"Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort."  (2 Corinthians 1:3)

In one of his letters, Adolph Monod tells how he found in his hardest moments that it was enough to take firm hold on a single promise. It sustained him in the sorest difficulties. He loved the words Father of Compassions, as 2 Corinthians 1:3 has it in French.

When one is in great pain or trouble, or caught suddenly by fierce temptation, it is the word of strength or comfort that is set deep in the memory that takes life. It speaks in a new tone, and becomes to us at that moment more than we could have ever believed it would be. John 14:26 explains this: "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, . . . He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever, I have said unto you."

So let us fill the storehouse of our mind with the treasure of God's word. Every day offers opportunities. When we go to bed tonight, let us think, "What treasure did I put in my storehouse today?" (AMY CARMICHAEL - WHISPERS OF HIS POWER)

N.J. Hiebert - 3812

August 31

"But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that He by the grace of God should taste death for every man."
(Hebrews 2:9)

But We See Jesus

I don't look back, God knows the fruitless efforts,
The wasted hours, the sinning, the regrets,
I leave them all with Him who blots the record,
And mercifully forgives, and then forgets.

I don't look forward, God sees all the future,
The road that, short or long, will lead me home,
And He will face with me its every trial,
And bear for me the burdens that may come.

But I look up - into the face of Jesus,
For there my heart can rest, my fears are stilled,
And there is joy, and love, and light for darkness,
And perfect peace, and every hope fulfilled
.
(FLINT'S BEST-LOVED POEMS)

N.J. Hiebert # 3813

"The Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God."
(1 Corinthians 2:10)

"Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."
(Psalm 139:23,24)

If there is a corner of my heart that Christ has not searched down to the very bottom, I am undone. Would I have a blind Christ, one whom I should not like to search out every part of my heart? Ah! I would rather have Christ pointing out everything, than friends praising. I adore God that gave Him to me. Who am I, that my Lord should so condescend to search me? And where there is evil in me, that is just where God lets His streams flow into me. He sees everything that hinders and chokes - would I stay His hand? (GLEANINGS of G.V. WIGRAM)

N.J. Hiebert - 3814

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