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

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Gems from March 2011

February 28

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength."
(Isaiah 40:31)

We should be in the spirit of waiting pilgrims, not weary ones.

You must not call yourself old as if you were tired.
The Lord is never weary, yet the Ancient of Days;
you have to renew your strength as an eagle to bear fruit in old age.

The source of real strength is in the sense of the Lord's being gracious.
The natural man in us always disbelieves Christ as the only source of strength and every blessing.

His way is "in the sanctuary" if His way is "in the sea," and if we are with Him there, the sea bows to His power; but to none else . . . when he works all is soon still.

Oh, if the Lord Himself was not the workman, how hopeless would be the thought of reaching all the souls that are in need.
It is a comfort then to be able to look to Him, that His eye and grace may reach them.

I have only one precious word to say to you: keep close to Jesus, you know you will find there joy, strength, and that consciousness of His love which sustains everywhere and makes everything else become nothing, there is our happiness and our life.
(Pilgrim Portions for the Day of Rest - J.N.D.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4358

March 1

"And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given Himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savour."
(Ephesians 5:2)

Love saw a guilt of sin, and sought a basis of pardon.
Love saw the defilement of sin, and sought a way of cleansing.
Love saw the depravity of sin, and sought a means of restoration.
Love saw the condemnation of sin, and sought a method of justification.
Love saw the death of sin, and sought a way of life.
Love sought - love found!

Historians have noted that the ancient Greek expressed three levels of love.

- Eros is a "give me" kind of love.
- Philia is a "give and take" kind of love. "You love me and I'll love you."
- Agape is an "unconditional" kind of love. "I love you simply for who you are."

Our Saviour's love was agape love in its highest form. He loved us enough to leave heaven's best, to suffer humiliation and death for a world of rebellious sinners. Only when we are gathered in glory with the ransomed of the ages and see His face will we fully know the meaning of this divine love. In the meantime, however, the scriptural command is that we are to live a life of love that ministers to the needs of others as a "fragrant offering and sacrifice to God."

I stand amazed in the presence of Jesus the Nazarene, and wonder how He could love me, a sinner condemned, unclean.

For me it was in the garden He prayed, "Not My will but Thine:" He had no tears for His own griefs but sweat-drops of blood for mine.

In pity angels beheld Him, and came from the world of light to comfort Him in the sorrows He bore for my soul that night.

He took my sins and my sorrows, He made them His very own; He bore the burden to Calv'ry and suffered and died alone.

When with the ransomed in glory His face I at last shall see, 'twill be my joy thru the ages to sing of His love for me.

Chorus: How marvelous! How wonderful! and my song shall ever be: How marvelous! how wonderful! is my Saviour's love for me.
(Charles H. Gabriel - 1856-1932)

N.J. Hiebert - 4359

March 2

"Adam . . . where art thou?"
(Genesis 3:9)

"He fell on His face, and prayed, saying, O My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me: nevertheless not as I will, but as Thou wilt."
(Matthew 26:39)

In the thick bowers of Eden, the first man,
Adam, hid himself from God because he had disobeyed God's will and sinned.
The second Adam, the Lord Jesus, made Himself available at His Father's will to drink the cup of suffering which was the result of our sin.
Let us worship Him who has done so much for us.
(Arnot P. McIntee)

N.J. Hiebert - 4360

March 3

In His Care

"Thou hast granted me life and favour, and Thy visitation hath preserved my spirit."
(Job 10:12)

Trials are not "chastisement."
No earthy father goes on chastising a loving child.
That is a common thought about suffering, but I am quite sure it is a wrong thought.

Paul's sufferings were not that, nor are yours.
They are battle wounds.
They are signs of of high confidence - honours.
The Father holds His children very close to His heart when they are going through such rough places as this.

"Thy care hath preserved my spirit" - a lovely Revised Version Margin which helped me a few days ago - is my word for you (Job 10:12).
Think of it; all day long you are being cared for, you are in His care.
(Candles in the Dark - Amy Carmichael)

N.J. Hiebert - 4361

March 4

"I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down."
(Nehemiah 6:3)

One of Satan's favorite employees is the "switchman." He likes nothing better than to side-track one of God's express trains, sent on some blessed mission and filled with the fire of a holy purpose.

Something will come up in the pathway of an earnest soul, to attract its attention, and occupy its strength and thought. Sometimes it is a little irritation and provocation. Sometimes it is some petty grievance we stop to pursue or adjust.

Very often, and before we are aware of it, we are absorbed in a lot of distracting cares and interests that quite turn us aside from the great purpose of our life.

We may not do much harm, but we have missed our connection. We have gotten off the main line.

Let these things alone. Let distractions come and go, but press forward steadily and irresistibly with your God-given task. The eagle flying in the upper air, pays but little or no attention to what is going on in the earth below him. As children of God we are to occupy our rightful place, "In the heavenlies," "far above all" these petty things. God would have us to be "eagle saints." Let us not stoop from our position! (A.B. Simpson)

An eagle does not catch flies!

N.J. Hiebert - 4362

March 5

"For God who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."
(2 Corinthians 4:6)

As Paul walked, the light shone. He was the reflector of his Lord in his walk. There was that cheeriness which is the result of always finding God's side of everything. Whatever the failure or sorrow, his heart just turned up to Christ. What a blessed tone he must have given to any company he was in, just seeing the lack, and bringing what would meet it in the power of enjoyed communion with the Lord; and so making other hearts bright. Don't we see this in some? no cloud over the heart - ever bright and cheery, because they look simply to Christ, seeking to reflect Christ. Who can look into the face of the Lord Jesus Christ and not find all their hearts' desire? Beholding with unveiled face the glory of the Lord - changed into the same image from glory to glory. (Gleanings From the Teaching of G.V.W.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4363

March 6

"Consider the work of God: for who can make that straight, which He hath made crooked."
(Ecclesiastes 7:13)

Often God seems to place His children in positions of profound difficulty, leading them into a wedge from which there is no escape; contriving a situation which no human judgment would have permitted, had it been previously consulted. The very cloud conducts them thither. You may be thus involved at this very hour.

It does seem perplexing and very serious to the last degree, but it is perfectly right. The issue will more than justify Him who has brought you hither. It is a platform for the display of His almighty grace and power.

He will not only deliver you; but in doing so, He will give you a lesson that you will never forget, and to which, in many a psalm and song, in after days, you will revert. You will never be able to thank God enough for having done just as He has. (Selected)

"We may wait till He explains,
Because we know that Jesus reigns."

It puzzles me; but, Lord, Thou understandest,
And wilt one day explain this crooked thing.
Meanwhile, I know that it has worked out Thy best -
Its very crookedness taught me to cling.

N.J. Hiebert - 4364

March 7

"Jesus answered and said unto them, ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God."
(Matthew 22:29)

Some, we are aware, would fain persuade us that things are so totally changed since the Bible was penned, that we need other guidance than that which its precious pages supply. They tell us that Society is not what it was; that the human race has made progress; that there has been such a development of the powers of nature, the resources of science, and the appliances of philosophy, that to maintain the sufficiency and supremacy of the Bible, at such a point in the world's history as the nineteenth century of the Christian era, can only be regarded as childishness, ignorance or imbecility.

Now, the men that tell us these things may be very clever and very learned; but we have no hesitation whatever in telling them that, in this matter, "they do greatly err, not knowing the Scriptures, nor the power of God." We certainly do desire to render all due respect to learning, genius, and talent, whenever we find them in their right place, and at their proper work; but when we find them lifting their proud heads above the Word of God; when we find them sitting in judgment, and casting a slur upon the peerless revelation, we feel that we owe them no respect whatever; yea, we treat them as so many agents of the devil, in his efforts to shake those eternal pillars on which the faith of God's people has ever rested.

We cannot listen for a moment to men, however profound in their reading and thinking, who dare to treat God's Book as though it were man's book, and speak of those pages that were penned by the Allwise, Almighty, and Eternal God, as though they were the production of a shallow and shortsighted mortal. (The All-Sufficiency of Christ - C.H. Mackintosh 1820-1896)

N.J. Hiebert - 4365

March 8

Resignation or Acceptance

"It is the Lord: let Him do what seemeth Him good."
(1 Samuel 3:18)

Eli was resigned to the will of God as revealed by Samuel. Resignation is better than rebellion or a stiff-upper lip Stoicism, but it is not the highest attitude. We acquiesce and resign to the inevitable because we have to! After all, there isn't much we can do about it.

Resignation may bring a martyr complex and a selfish pride at putting up with whatever comes. Better than all this is acceptance: accept the will of God when adversity comes, learn whatever lessons are in it and believe that it works for our good. That is a wholesome and healthy spirit. Rebellion or a mere endurance of affliction may wreck us. Resignation may make us "proud that we are humble." Acceptance falls in with God's plan and purpose and enables us to safely trust, even though we may not fully understand.

Some things, of course, are never meant to be accepted. They are the will of the devil and must be resisted and defeated. But that which cannot be changed may be turned to God's glory and our good if accepted and transmuted from a burden into a blessing. (Day by Day with Vance Havner)

N.J. Hiebert - 4366

March 9

"Mary . . . sat at Jesus' feet, and heard His word."
(Luke 10:39)

"Lord, teach us to pray."
(Luke 11:1)

The principle of all-prevailing intercession lies in the soul entering into the thoughts of God and turning them into prayer.

"Pray for them which despitefully use you" (Luke 6:28).

If a brother treats you coldly, if a sister speaks against you, do you make it your habit to pray for them?

Oh, how different we would be, if we thus bare one another up before the Lord.

Luther said, "To pray well is to study well," and we may add, to preach well.

All that is outside of the Bible, all that presumes to come into competition with it and challenges the ears of men, is but a sea, an unformed mass, of opinions and reasonings. How welcome therefore to the soul, wearied in its quest after some stable foundation on which to rest in view of death and eternity, is the immutable basis laid for faith in the infallible scriptures.
(Edward Dennett)

N.J. Hiebert - 4367

March 10

"And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear."
(Isaiah 65:24)

Chaplain Johnson was serving his men on an island in the South Pacific. On a certain occasion he accompanied his men in a bombing raid on Japanese-occupied islands several hundred mile away. The operation was a complete success. On the homeward course their plane began to lose altitude and the engines seemed to give out. They landed safely, however, on a certain island; but shortly after landing learned that the enemy was just half a mile distant from them in each direction, yet, strange to say, their landing had not been observed.

The staff sergeant came to him and said, "Chaplain, you have been telling us for months of the need of praying and believing God to answer in time of great trouble, and that He does it right away. Now it is your chance to prove what you have been preaching. We're out of gas: base several hundred miles away . . . and almost surrounded by Japanese soldiers!" Johnson listened seriously. Slipping away to a quiet spot he began to give himself to prayer. Throughout the afternoon he remained on his knees, pleading the promises and believing for God's deliverance.

Night came and the crew slept on the ground. Johnson, however, continued to pray. About 2 a.m. the staff sergeant was strangely aroused from his slumber, and, walking to the water's edge, discovered, to his amazement, a metal flat which had drifted upon the beach - a barge, on which were fifty barrels of high octane gasoline. In a few hours the crew reached their home base safely.

An investigation later revealed that the skipper of a U.S. tanker, finding his ship in submarine-infested waters, had his gasoline cargo removed so as to eliminate the danger of a terrific explosion in the event of a torpedo hit. He placed his barrels on barges, and sent them adrift at a spot some 600 miles from the island on which Johnson and his plane crew were forced to land. Surely the divine Hand had navigated one of these barges through wind and current, and beached it fifty steps from the stranded men. (Henry Durbanville)

N.J. Hiebert - 4368

March 11

"Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord."
(1 Corinthians 15:58)

If the plan we work is God’s plan, God will provide all that is needed to complete the plan.

If the work we work is God’s work, God will work it out by us and through
us and wonder of wonders, He will in the end reward us for it.

“Little is much if God is in it
Man’s busiest day’s not worth God’s minute
Much is little everywhere
If God the Labour does not share
So work with Him, and nothing is lost
Work on, work on!
Who works with Him does best and most
Work on, work on!” (Submitted by a reader S.L.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4369

March 12

"Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new (creation): old things have passed away; behold, all things are become new."
(2 Corinthians 5:17)

Jascha Heifetz, the -renowned violinist, described the difference between one who plays a "fiddle" and one who plays a "violin." He said the fiddler plays musical notes. The violinist interprets the notes and the spirit of the composer from his soul, and the result is beautiful music. It's the same in our spiritual life. God wants to make active in our daily lives the "intent and spirit of the Master Composer." This cannot be done by simply following a form of godliness and denying the power thereof. It is when we open our hearts to be filled to overflowing with HIS LIFE, surrendering our "worn-out instrument" into the hands of His masterful artistry. HE will transform the redundant notes of our life into an abundant life in Christ. Then, and only then, will we know what it truly means to be "IN CHRIST." (Adapted)

N.J. Hiebert - 4370

March 13

"Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation. Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever."
(Hebrews 13:7-8)

Nothing is of any value that does not spring from personal love to, and communion with, Christ Himself. We may have scripture at our finger ends; we may be able to preach with remarkable fluency, a fluency which unpractised spirits may easily enough mistake for 'power'; but oh! if our hearts are not drinking deeply at the fountainhead - if they are not enlivened and invigorated by the realization of the love of Christ, it will all end in mere flash and smoke. I have learnt ... to be increasingly dissatisfied with everything, whether in myself or others, short of abiding, real, deep, divinely inwrought communion with, and conformity to, the blessed Master. Crotchets I despise; mere opinions I dread; controversy I shrink from; all 'isms' I esteem as utterly worthless. But ... I long to know more of His own precious Person, His work and His glory. And, then, oh! to live for Him: to labour, testify, preach, and pray, and all for Christ, and by the working of His grace in our hearts. (C.H. Mackintosh / K.W.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4371

March 14

The Palm Tree Or Palm Tree Christians

"The righteous shall flourish like the Palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon."
(Psalm 92:12)

Many of the allusions and expressions of Scripture can be explained only by the aid of knowledge of natural history. In Psalm 92: 12, for example, it is said that "the righteous shall flourish like the palm," and the habits of this tree beautifully illustrate the character of the righteous. The palm grows not in the depths of the forest, or in a fertile loam, but in the desert. Its verdure often springs apparently from the scorching dust. "It is in this respect," says Laborde, "as a friendly lighthouse, guiding the traveler to the spot where water is to be found."

The tree is remarkable for its beauty, its erect aspiring growth, its leafy canopy, its waving plumes, the emblem of praise in all ages. Its very foliage is the symbol of joy and exultation. It never fades, and the dust never settles upon it. It was therefore twisted into the booths of the feast of tabernacles (Lev. 23: 40), was borne aloft by the multitude that accompanied the Messiah to Jerusalem (John 12: 13), and it is represented as in the hands of the redeemed in heaven (Rev. 7: 9). For usefulness, the tree is unrivalled. Gibbon says that the natives of Syria speak of 360 uses to which the palm is applied. Its shade refreshes the traveler. Its fruit restores his strength. When his soul fails for thirst, it announces water. Its seeds are ground into food for his camels. Its leaves are made into couches, its boughs into fences and walls, and its fibers into ropes or rigging. Its best fruit, moreover, is borne in old age; the finest dates being often gathered when the tree has reached a hundred years. It sends, too, from the same root a large number of suckers, which, in time, form a forest by their growth (Judges 4: 5).

What an emblem of the righteous in the desert of aguilworld! It is not uninstructive to add that this tree, once the symbol of Palestine, is now [1860] rarely seen in that country. (From The Bible Hand Book: An Introduction to the Study of Sacred Scripture (circa 1860), by Joseph Angus - submitted by a reader of the "Gems"- J.K.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4372

March 15

"For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace . . ."
(1 Corinthians 14:33)

God is a God of order. He "is not the author of confusion." Disorder and confusion belong to the kingdom of Satan and darkness; but, He that is clothed with honour and majesty, who "covereth Himself with light as with a garment," (Psalm 104:2) cannot permit disorder in His kingdom. It would be utterly inconsistent with light, and derogatory to majesty. And as to His divine wisdom, it expresses itself in that perfect order which characterises all His counsels and works. It is this principle of divine order that pervades the universe. Nay we consider the heavens, which declare the glory of God, and the firmament, which shows His handiwork, where He has set a tabernacle for the sun, and ordained the moon and the stars - though there is no speech nor language with them, and though their voice is not heard, yet "Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world." (Psalm 19:4) And to what, next to the glory of God, does their silent language testify? That God is a God of order. (Light in Their Dwellings - J.A. von Poseck)

N.J. Hiebert - 4373

March 16

"And being let go, they went to their own company and . . . they lifted up their voice to God with one accord."
(Acts 4:23, 24)
Read verses that follow and notice how:

1. They realized the presence of the Lord.

2. They were filled with the Spirit.

3. They witnessed for God with great boldness.

4. They were united in soul and spirit.

5. They unselfishly cared for one another.

6. They yielded all they had to God.

7. Great grace was upon them all.

Shut in with Thee, far, far above
The restless world that wars below,
We'd seek to learn and prove Thy love,
Thy wisdom and Thy grace to know

N.J. Hiebert - 4374

March 17

"Oh, that I knew where I might find HIM!"
(Job 23:3)

The believer's happiness consists very much in the presence of God, and a sense of His love. His happiness is not in place, or circumstances, or friends--but in God Himself as revealed in Jesus.

at any time,
in any condition,
alone or in any company,
we can be happy--if we realize that God is present, and can enter into communion with Him.

Real religion always . . .
centers in God,
feasts on God, and
is satisfied with God alone.

The teachings of the Holy Spirit brings us away from other sources of peace and satisfaction--to God alone. And in God, as made known in Jesus, we find . . .
all we want,
all we wish,
all we can !

"Thou wilt show me the path of life: in Thy presence is fullness of joy; at Thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore." (Psalm 16:11)

Oh, blessed thought! Having been brought to set our hearts on God, to find our happiness in God--soon, very soon, we shall enjoy His perfect, perpetual presence; and shall never more sigh, or cry, "Oh, that I knew where I might find HIM!"

"And so we will be with the Lord forever!" 1 Thessalonians 4:17
(James Smith "The Loved One Absent" 1860 enjoy)
Submitted by B.L

N.J. Hiebert - 4375

March 18

"It is a good thing that the heart be established with grace."
(Hebrews 13:9)

Some people are so phenomenally developed in one direction at the expense of all others, that thy may be compared to the Long-Worm (Nemertes Boralsii), which reaches the length of thirty feet with a breadth of an eight of an inch. This is like knowledge of Scripture without grace. Grace is knowledge in operation. Knowledge might make a man a long talker but grace makes a man a good walker.

Still on Thy Holy Word we'd live,
And feed and grow;
Go on to know the Lord,
And practice what we know.
(Choice Gleanings June 2, 1973)

N.J. Hiebert - 4376

March 19

" . . . God: from Him cometh my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be greatly moved."
(Psalm 62:1-2)

The Syrian Hyrax is a very unusual animal that makes its habitat in the Middle East.
The Syrian Hyrax is also called a “rock rabbit.”

It is about the size of a large guinea pig but is not closely linked to any other known animal.
Because of its small size it is vulnerable to attack from many predators.

This little creature manages to survive by making its home in holes or clefts in rocky cliffs.
People are a lot like the Syrian Hyrax.
We are vulnerable and susceptible to many dangers in this world.
We too have a Rock in which to hide,
“…and that Rock was Christ.” 1 Corinthians 10:4

Rock of Ages! cleft for sin,
Grace hath hid us safe within!
Where the water and the blood,
From Thy riven side hath flowed,
Are of sin the double cure;
Cleansing from its guilt and power

When you are you between a rock and a hard place, run and take refuge in the Rock of Ages.

O safe to the Rock that is higher than I
My soul in its conflicts and sorrows would fly;
So sinful, so weary—Thine, Thine would I be:
Thou blest "Rock of Ages," I'm hiding in Thee

(From a reader - S.L.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4377

March 20

"Blessed be the Lord, Who daily loadeth us with benefits even the God of our salvation. Selah."
(Psalm 68:19)

Burdened with Blessings

One morning, R.C. Chapman was asked how he was feeling. “I’m burdened this morning!” he replied.

But his happy face suggested otherwise. So, the question came again,
“Are you really burdened, Mr. Chapman?”

“Yes, but it is an overabundance of blessings for which I cannot find enough time or words to express my gratitude.”

Seeing the puzzled look on the face of his friend, Chapman added, “I am referring to Psalm 68:19:” (Selected - J.K.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4378

March 21

"Take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place."
(2 Peter 1:19)

Sun of my soul, Thou Saviour dear,
It is not night if Thou be near.
Oh, may no earth-born cloud arise,
To hide Thee from Thy servant's eyes.

The presence of light repels darkness, thus defining its boundaries. The darkness is not a place we would expect to find God, but even from the darkness His glories shine. In the beginning He commanded light to shine out of darkness, and on Mt. Sinai from thick darkness he declared His holiness in the giving of the law. But His greatest feat was bearing the judgment of my sin while hanging on a tree veiled in darkness. Oh how the light of God's glory blazed forth that day! If your day seems dark, lift up your heart to Him and you will find that He can bring the comforting light of His glory into your darkness, too. (Warren Henderson)

N.J. Hiebert - 4379

March 22

"The just shall live by faith."
(Hebrews 10:38)

Seemings and feelings are often substituted for faith. Pleasurable emotions and deep satisfying experiences are part of the Christian life,but they are not all of it. Trials, conflicts, battles and testings lie along the way, and are not to be counted as misfortunes, but rather as part of our necessary discipline.

In all these varying experiences we are to reckon on Christ as dwelling in the heart, regardless of our feelings if we are walking obediently before Him. Here is where many get into trouble; they try to walk by feeling rather than faith.

Samuel Rutherford said, "Believe God's word and power more than you believe your own feelings and experiences. Your Rock is Christ, and it is not the Rock which ebbs and flows, but your sea." (Adapted)

N.J. Hiebert - 4380

March 23

"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus."
(Philippians 2:5)

What was the mind that was in Jesus?
It was always coming down.
We shall call it a long journey from the throne of God to the cross; it was very far, indeed, and it was always down. "He that humbleth himself shall be exalted." (Luke 18:14)

The more He humbled Himself, the more He was trampled on.

He begins His ministry with "Blessed, blessed;" He has to end it with, "Woe, woe."
He goes down, whether trampled on or not, till He can go no lower, down to "the dust of death" (Psalm 22:15).
(Brief Thoughts on Philippians - JND)

N.J. Hiebert - 4381

March 24

"Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints, cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers."
(Ephesians 1:15-16)

At verse 15 the apostle ceases to be a teacher and becomes an intercessor - and you will find that he never in prayer pulls down what, as a teacher, he had built up.

You will sometimes hear people asking God to love them. I could never make such a prayer as that. I am to pray for a deeper sense of his love. Paul does not ask God to give them this, and the other; but he asks Him that they may have the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him - that the eyes of their understanding may be enlightened. Oh, for a better heart to know these things! But to ask God to love me, to make me a co-heir with Christ, to appoint me to heavenly places in Him! I will make a prayer much more humbling than that, I am so blessed in my calling; so poor in my enjoyment! If God has lit a candle, I will not ask Him to light it, but to take the film from my eyes, that I may see what He has done, what this magnificent purpose is, and the power that has brought us there. So he prays that you may have an eye to discern the brightness of the heavenly glory, and the resurrection-power that has conducted you from such ruins to such glories. (Brief Notes on the Epistle to the Ephesians - J.G. Bellett)

N.J. Hiebert - 4382

March 25

"Jesus answered, if I honour Myself, My honour is nothing: it is My Father that honoureth Me. . . ."
(John 8:54)

"Them that honour Me I will honour," said God once to a priest of Israel, and that ancient law of the kingdom stands today unchanged by the passing of time or the changes of dispensation. The whole Bible and every page of history proclaim the perpetuation of that law.

"If any man serve Me, him will my Father honour," said our Lord Jesus, tying in the old with the new and revealing the essential unity of His ways with men.

It seems plain that almost any Bible character who honestly tried to glorify God in his earthly walk was so honoured. See how God overlooked weaknesses and failures as He poured upon His servants grace and blessing untold. Let it be Abraham, Jacob, David, Daniel, Elijah or whom you will; honour followed honour as harvest the seed. The man of God set his heart to exalt God above all; God accepted his intention as fact and acted accordingly. Not perfection, but holy intention made the difference!

In our Lord Jesus Christ this law was seen in simple perfection. He sought not His own honour, but the honour of the God who sent Him.

"If I honour myself," He said on one occasion, "My honour is nothing; it is my Father that honoureth Me." So far had the proud Pharisees departed from this law that they could not understand one who honoured God at his own expense.
(Renewed Day by Day - A.W. Tozer)

N.J. Hiebert- 4383

March 26

"The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun."
(Ecclesiastes 1:9)

"There is nothing new under the sun." Therefore, all the Christian needs to protect him from modern systems of an evil character is a better acquaintance with the Word of God, where the truth is taught in its purity and the lies of the adversary are brought out into the light and fully exposed. (H.A. Ironside)

N.J. Hiebert - 4384

March 27

"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool."
(Isaiah 1:18)

It is not merely a question of thirst and poverty, but actually of scarlet sins - guilt of crimson dye. Even these need be no hindrance, seeing that God in His infinite grace has found a means whereby He can righteously cleanse the guilt and blot out the sins, and render the soul of the poor guilty sinner as white as snow, as the wool just pure from the washing.

Mark the grace that shines in the words, "Come now, and let us reason together." Only think of the high and mighty One that inhabits eternity - the Maker of heaven and earth - the Creator and sustainer of the universe - the One who has power to destroy both soul and body in hell - think of His condescending to reason with a poor guilty sinner, covered from head to foot with scarlet sins! What grace is here! What loving-kindness and tender mercy! Who can withstand it? Who can refuse to come? Who will harden his heart against such love as this?

God grant the reader may not do so! Oh! that he may come now and trust in the perfect, because divine, efficacy of that most precious blood - even the blood of God's own Son, which cleanses from all sin, and makes the soul clean enough to stand in the full blaze of the holiness of God. (Christian Truth - Vol. 23 - September 1970)

N.J. Hiebert - 4385

March 28

"Thou shalt eat bread at my table continually."
(2 Samuel 9:7)

"When the hour was come, He sat down and the twelve apostles with Him."
(Luke 22:14)

Mephibosheth, in spite of a deformity caused by a fall, was invited by the king to enjoy the abundance of his table. Today the honour bestowed upon us is greater than his. As the redeemed of the Lord, we are invited to join our Lord at His freshly spread table to break the bread and drink the wine. May we enjoy this feast and His presence today. It may be our last this side of the Glory. (Arnot P. McIntee)

N.J. Hiebert - 4386

March 29

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

- We can get life and happiness only in Christ.

Apart from Him, all is death and misery.

- There is nothing real, nothing solid, nothing satisfying , but in Christ

- Either Christ's atoning sacrifice is sufficient, or it is not; if it is sufficient, why those doubts and fears?
(Food for the Desert)

N.J. Hiebert - 4387

March 30

"The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want."
(Psalm 23:1)

- The greatness of the Shepherd - "the Lord";
- The certainty of His shepherdhood - "is";
- The personal nature of the shepherdhood - "My shepherd;"
- What shepherhood includes - food, protection, etc.
- He who calls the muster roll of the stars, and reigns over a million worlds,
Cares for me, and,
- Never once is oblivious of me, so small, so feeble, so unwise.
- His shepherd-care extends over all time
- Embraces every dispensation
- Supplies every want
- Anticipates every emergency
- Comprehends every believer from the beginning to the end of the world -
- And shall everlastingly secure the safety and the happiness of every member of the flock.
- In strength He is almighty;
- In wisdom omniscient;
- In love unequalled; and
- In resources unbounded.
(In Pastures Green - George Henderson)

N.J. Hiebert - 4388

March 31

"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 4:16)

Mr. Darby translates it: "Let us approach therefore with boldness to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace for seasonable help." What is the difference between the two translations? This: if you lift a man out of a deep hole into which he may have accidentally fallen, you would be giving him help in time of need; if you guard him from falling into the hole, you would be rendering him seasonable help.

A fence at the top of a precipice is better than a hospital at the bottom.

He ever lives to intercede and hence the grace of God is not only equal:

- for a second but for 60 seconds,
- not only for a minute but for 60 minutes,
- not only for an hour but for 24 hours,
- not only for a day but for 365 days,
- not only for a year but for a lifetime and eternity.

He is able to save to the uttermost (Hebrews 7:25), to keep us from falling (Jude 24), to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think (Ephesians 3:20).

Finally, the verse speaks of the end and purpose of it all. We have illimitable resources, always available - (Heavens Cure for Earth's Care)

N.J. Hiebert - 4389


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