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

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Gems from May 2011

"Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling . . ."
(Jude 24)

God is able to keep us from falling. To doubt this would not only be to disbelieve His own word, but also to forget that He is God.

The Holy Spirit is our only power for a holy walk. Of ourselves we cannot take a single step in this path.

The utmost human efforts, the most resolute determination, are of no avail either to keep ourselves from evil or to follow after Christ.

If you leave out the truth of the coming of the Lord Jesus you miss a power for holiness that God has given to us. (Edward Dennett)

"And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as He is pure" (1 John 3:3).

N.J. Hiebert - 4418

"By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter; choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season."
(Hebrews 11:24,25)

Nature would say of Moses, Why not stay in Pharaoh's court, that the people may be converted, instead of leaving it?
Flesh cannot understand what faith leads to. (J.N. Darby)

N.J. Hiebert - 4419

May 1

"I will trust, and not be afraid." (Isaiah 12:2)

You must not attach too much importance to your joy . . . nor to your distress. . . . You can add nothing by joy or sorrow to the perfect work of Christ. . . . If someone has paid my debts, my sorrow at the folly that contracted them or my joy at their being discharged adds nothing whatever to the payment of the debt, though both be natural and just.

Abraham found in the mountain a place where he could intercede with God, while Lot was saying, "I cannot escape to the mountain, lest some evil take me and I die." Unbelief always looks at the place of faith as the most awful thing possible - all darkness. (Pilgrim Portions for the Day of Rest)

N.J. Hiebert - 4420

May 2

"It is written." (Matthew 4:4,7,10)

Christ overcame Satan by the Word. He simply said: "It is written;" and a second time, and a third time, "It is written;" and that was the arrow that shot right into him and drove him away. The devil does not care a bit about our feelings. He can make our feelings good or bad; he can take us up on the mountain, or down into the valley, and we can only vanquish him by the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word. (D.L. Moody)

N.J. Hiebert - 4421

May 3

"Thou preparest a table before me in the preparest a table before me in the presence of my enemies."
(Psalm 23:5)

A Table in the Presence of Mine Enemies

When we come to the Lord's Table to partake of the bread and drink the cup in remembrance of Him, it is a blessed picture: "Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies." ("For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup ye do show the Lord's death till He come" 1 Corinthians 11:26).

What did He have to go through to prepare this remembrance for us? Nothing short of His infinite condescending love made possible this solemn communion in which we remember His redeeming sacrifice on Calvary. Can any words express more fully than John 3:16 the love of God and the sacrifice of His Son on Calvary? "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life."

When we confess our sin and receive Christ as our Savior, He gives us a place at the His table. What had to take place for us to have this divine privilege? Paul says, "For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him" (2 Corinthians 5:21). Such fathomless love, which was subjected to the maximum of man's scorn, rejection, bitterness, hate, blasphemy, and finally the infamy of Calvary, He manifested for sinful mankind. We cannot conceive of such great love; it is beyond our understanding. He went through all of this, "preparing a table in the presence of mine enemies." And then He cried out with a loud voice, "It is finished." What is finished? Our salvation was made complete by the price He paid in full for our redemption with His body and blood on Calvary. Our "table" has been fully prepared and is set before us, filled with the bounties of His mercy and grace! We take our place in humble contrition. (Adapted)

N.J. Hiebert - 4422

May 4

"Fight the good fight of faith . . ." (1 Timothy 6:12)
"This is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith." (1 John 5:4)

Napoleon quickly observed where the strategic position for a battlefield lay. He would then thrust all his forces and resources into conquering and keeping that position, no matter what the sacrifice to his troops.

To claim spiritual conquests, soldiers in the army of God must be prepared and alert to do the same. Gordon B. Watt once said: "The point of obstructions must be found out, and prayer focused upon it. The mind must be convicted. The will must be stirred into right action. On the obstruction, whatever it may be, as it is revealed through waiting upon God, prayer must be concentrated."

Oh, the wonders of prayer!
- Abraham's servant prays . . . Rebekah appears.
- Jacob wrestles and prays and prevails with Christ . . .
- Esau's mind is wonderfully turned from the revengeful purpose he has harboured for twenty years.
- Moses cries to God . . . the sea divides.
- Moses prays . . . Amalek is discomfited.
- Joshua prays . . . Achan is discovered.
- Hannah prays . . . Samuel is born.
- David prays . . . Ahithophel hangs himself.
- Asa prays . . . a victory is gained.
- Jehoshophat cries to God . . . God turns away his foes .
- Isaiah prays . . . the dream is revealed.
- Daniel prays . . . the lions are muzzled.
- Daniel prays . . . the seventy weeks are revealed.
- Ezra prays at Ahava . . . God answers.
- Nehemiah starts a prayer . . . the King's heart is softened in a minute.
- Elijah prays . . . a drought of three years succeeds.
- Elijah prays . . . rain descends apace.
- Elijah prays . . . Jordan is divided.
- The church prays ardently . . . Peter is delivered by an angel.

The weapon of prayer against the forces of evil prevails.
- It brings power.
- It brings fire.
- It brings rain.
- It brings life.
- It bring God!

There is no power like that of prevailing prayer. Dare to be definite with God; dare to lay hold of the promises and to wait in faith until the answer comes. Victory is through Calvary! (Author Unknown)

N.J. Hiebert - 4423

May 5

"Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord. Jesus Christ."
(Acts 20:21)

Repentance involves the moral judgment of ourselves under the action of the Word of God by the power of the Holy Spirit. It is the discovery of our utter sinfulness, guilt, and ruin, our hopeless bankruptcy, our undone condition. It expresses itself in these glowing words of Isaiah, "Woe is me! for I am undone"; and in that touching utterance of Peter, "Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord" (Luke 5:8). Repentance is an abiding necessity for the sinner, and the deeper it is the better. It is the plowshare entering the soul and turning up the fallow ground. The plowshare is not the seed, but the deeper the furrow the stronger the root.

We delight in a deep work of repentance in the soul. We fear there is far too little of it in what is called revival work. Men are so anxious to simplify the gospel, and make salvation easy, that they fail to press upon the sinner's conscience the claims of truth and righteousness. No doubt, salvation is as free as the grace of God can make it. Moreover it is all of God from first to last. God is its source, Christ its channel, the Holy Spirit its power of application and enjoyment. All this is blessedly true; but we must never forget that man is a responsible being - a guilty sinner - imperatively called upon to repent and turn to God. (C.H. Mackintosh)

N.J. Hiebert - 4424

May 6

"My brethren, have not faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons." (James 2:1)

A system of literature has grown up around the notion that Christianity may be proven by the fact that "great men" believe in Christ!

A magazine article carries the caption that "Senator So-and-So Believes in Christ." The implication is that if the senator believes in Christ, then Christ must be all right.

When did Jesus Christ have to ride in on the coattail of a senator, or a governor, or some other well known man?

No, no! Jesus Christ stands alone, unique and supreme, self-validating, and the Holy Spirit declares Him to be God's eternal Son. ["That at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow... and that every tongue shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."] Let us pray that all presidents and all the kings and queens, the senators, and the lords and ladies of the world, along with the great athletes and great actors - will kneel at His feet and cry, "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty!"

Only the Holy Spirit can do this. For that reason, I don't bow down to great men. I bow down to the Great Man, and if you have learned to worship the Son of Man, you will not worship other men.

The Holy Spirit is God's imperative of life. If Christ is to be the Christ of God rather than the Christ of intellect, then we must enter in beyond the veil, until the illumination of the Holy Spirit fills our hearts and we are learning at the feet of Jesus - not at the feet of men! (A.W. Tozer - Renewed Day By Day)

N.J. Hiebert - 4425

May 7

"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God."
(Ephesians 2:8)

Those words declare plainly that the very faith by which we are saved is the gift of God. But some will say that if the gift is not given by God then they cannot believe, and so they should not be held responsible for the loss of their soul. That interpretation is very unsound. The Word says, "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God" (Romans 10:17). Faith is founded upon hearing, and if men give attention and hear the voice of God and desire to be delivered from their sins, then faith springs up in their souls, and they are enabled to lay hold of Christ and be saved. But where men deliberately spurn the Word of God and persist in their sinfulness, they are numbered among those of whom the apostle writes: "All men have not faith" (2 Thessalonians 3:2). They have not faith because they will not give heed to the message. (H.A. Ironside - Address on Thessalonians)

N.J. Hiebert - 4426

May 8

"Without Me ye can do nothing."
(John 15:5)

I may see what appears very attractive down here; but, looking up there, I see Christ, and I feel that till He comes down, earth cannot be blessed. This world to me without Him is only a wilderness; there is no rest here. All blessing - even for the earth - is shut up in Christ; all happiness, all true joy, hid in the person of the Lord. You cannot get anything like real happiness without Him. Oh, how much happier a way of learning that out rest is not here, is that thought that nothing can make us happy till He comes, than to be vainly seeking rest while He is absent, filling our mouths with sand and gravel! (Gleanings From the Teaching of G.V. Wigram)

N.J. Hiebert - 4427

May 9

"Tell me, O Thou whom my soul loveth, where Thou makest Thy flock to rest at noon?"
(Song of Solomon 1:7)

We have lost the art of "resting at noon." Many are slowly succumbing to the strain of life because they have forgotten how to rest. The steady stream, the continuous uniformity of life, is what kills.

Rest is not a sedative for the sick, but a tonic for the strong. It spells emancipation, illumination, transformation. It saves us from becoming slaves even of good works.

One of our Cambridge naturalists told me once of an experiment he had made with a pigeon. The bird had been born in a cage and had never been free; one day his owner took the bird out on the porch of the house and flung it into the air. To the naturalist's surprise the bird's capacity for flight was perfect. Round and round it flew as if born in the air; but soon its flight grew excited, panting, and the circles grew smaller, until at last the bird dashed full against its master's breast and fell to the ground. What did it mean? It meant that, though the bird had inherited the instinct of flight it had not inherited the capacity to stop, and if it had not risked the shock of a sudden halt the little life would have been panted out in the air.

Isn't that a parable of many a modern life: completely endowed with the instinct of action, but without the capacity to stop? Round and round life goes in its weary circle until it is almost dying at full speed. Any shock, even some severe experience, is a mercy if it checks the whirl. Sometimes God stops such a a soul abruptly by some sharp blow of trouble, and the soul falls in despair at His feet, and then He bends over it and says: "Be still, my child; be still and know that I am God!" until by degrees the despair of trouble is changed into submission and obedience, and the poor, weary, fluttering life is made strong to fly again. (Springs in the Valley)

N.J. Hiebert - 4428

May 10

"But God raised Him from the dead."
(Acts 13:30)

By an act of God, our Saviour arose from the dead, and lives eternally. He is the only spiritual leader in human history who was once dead and now lives. Many bore witness of His resurrection. He will never die. Every human being - past, present, future - has an inescapable appointment with the living Christ. For many, that appointment is a happy prospect. For all others, it bodes an awful doom. Prepare now to meet the risen Saviour. (Doug Kazen)

He lives; He lives: Christ Jesus lives today.
He walks with me; He talks with me, along life's narrow way.
He lives; He lives; salvation to impart.
You ask me how I know He lives; He lives within my heart
(A. Ackley)

N.J. Hiebert - 4429

May 11

If any man hear My voice
(Revelation 3:20)

On September 11, 2001 after a hijacked plane slammed into the Pentagon, a cloud of thick black smoke trapped many people inside the building. Police officer Isaac Hoopi ran into the building and into the dark cloud, looking for survivors. As he made his way through the darkness he heard people calling for help. He began shouting back, over and over, “Head toward my voice! Head toward my voice!”

A group of six people, who had lost all sense of direction in a smoke-filled hallway, heard the officer’s shouts and began to move toward his voice. Hoopi’s voice led them out of the building to safety.

Jesus gave a very similar invitation.

"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me.” Revelation 3:20
(Selected - submitted by S.L.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4430

May 12

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

- God blesses you to bless others.

- A believer at war with another Christian cannot be at peace with the Father.

- Guard your thoughts as you would your wallet.

- Submission to good means taking our hands off what belongs to Him.

- God's purpose for today's events may not be seen till tomorrow.

- A warning heeded is a disaster avoided.

- Love was displayed when God became a man.

- If you always tell the truth you will never be trapped in a lie.
(Some Thoughts to Consider - R.K.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4431

May 13

". . . When thou shalt make His soul an offering for sin, . . . He shall see of the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied: . . ."
(Isaiah 53:10,11)

JESUS CHRIST, PERFECT GOD AND PERFECT MAN

- It is true that He emptied Himself.
- He laid aside the outward appearance of Deity.
- His Godhead was veiled. But it was there!
- Again and again His Godhead showed itself.
- As man, he slept in the boat.
- As God, He calmed the waves.
- As man, He wept.
- As God, He cried, "Lazarus, come forth!"
- As man, He was laid in the tomb
- As God, He arose!
(A.E. Hughes)

Oh, the love that drew salvation's plan,
Oh, the grace that brought it down to man,
Oh, the mighty gulf that God did span - AT CALVARY!
Mercy there was great, and grace was free,
Pardon there was multiplied to me,
There my burdened soul found liberty - AT CALVARY!
"Calvary stills all questions."

The Cross spells two stories: one in black - ugly black - the story of sin. Sin carpentered the Cross, and and wove the thorns, and drove the nails - our sin! And a story too, in red - bright - flowing red - the story of LOVE, HIS LOVE that yielded to the Cross and nails and shame for us! And only the passion of His love burning within will make us hate sin, as only HIS BLOOD can wash it out.
The hill of the Cross is the highest hill on earth in its significance. There hate's worst and love's best met.
AND LOVE WON
(S.D. Gordon)

N.J. Hiebert - 4432

May 14

"And Samuel said, hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold to obey is better than sacrifice and to hearken than the fat of rams."
(1 Samuel 15:22)

Saul's word was "Sacrifice." Samuel's word was "obedience." No doubt the bleating of the sheep and the lowing of the oxen were most exciting. They would be looked upon as substantial proofs that something was being done; while on the other hand, the path of obedience seemed narrow, silent, lonely and fruitless. But oh! those pungent words of Samuel! "To obey is better than sacrifice." What a triumphant answer to the most eloquent advocates of expediency! They are most conclusive - most commanding words. They teach us that it is better, if it must be so, to stand, like a marble statue, on the pathway of obedience, than to reach the most desirable ends by transgressing a plain precept of the Word of God. (C.H. Mackintosh)

N.J. Hiebert - 4433

May 15

"Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." (Psalm 119:105)

God's Word is represented as a lamp for the feet.

It is a "lamp"--not a blazing sun, nor even a lighthouse--but a plain, common lamp or lantern which one can carry about in the hand.

It is a lamp "for the feet," not throwing its beams afar, not illumining a hemisphere--but shining only on the one little bit of road on which the pilgrim's feet are walking.

The law of divine guidance is, "Step by step". One who carries a lantern on a country-road at night, sees only one step before him. If he takes that step, he carries his lantern forward, and thus makes another step plain. At length he reaches his destination in safety, without once stepping into darkness. The whole way has been made light for him, though only a single step of it at a time. This illustrates the usual method of God's guidance.

If this is the way God guides, it ought never to be hard for us to find our duty. It never lies far away, inaccessible to us--but is always near. It never lies out of our sight, in the darkness, for God never puts our duty where we cannot see it. The thing that we think may be our duty--but which is still lying in obscurity and uncertainty, is not our duty yet, whatever it may be a little farther on. The duty for the very moment is always clear--and that is as far as we need concern ourselves; for when we do the little that is clear, we will carry the light on, and it will shine on the next moment's step.

Jesus said, "He that followeth Me shall not walk in darkness" (John 8:12). Prompt, unquestioning, undoubting following of Christ--takes all the perplexity out of Christian life and gives unbroken peace. There never is a moment without its duty; and if we are living near to Christ and following Him closely, we shall never be left in ignorance of what He wants us to do. (Selected - B.L.)

"Order my steps in Thy Word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me" (Psalm 119:133).

N.J. Hiebert - 4434

May 16

"But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, and kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the Apostles' feet. But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Spirit, and to keep back part of the price of the land? While it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God."
(Acts 5:1-4)

- What drove Adam our of Eden? Eating a little fruit.
- What degraded the head of the restored earth? Drinking too much wine.
- What stripped Aaron of his garments of glory and beauty? Strange fire.

Thus, in every instance, it is not a question as to the magnitude of the thing done, but as to the gravity of the principle involved.

It is of the very deepest moment to see this, in all cases. What appears on the surface may, in our poor shallow judgment, seem very trivial: but the underlying principles may involve the very gravest consequences.
(Letters to a Friend by C.H. Mackintosh - 1874 & 1875)

N.J. Hiebert - 4435

May 17

"And looking upon Jesus as He walked, He saith , Behold the Lamb of God! And the two disciples heard Him speak, and they followed Jesus." (John 1:36,37)

Seeing

An earnest young Christian who had a deep longing to follow and grow in Christ went to visit an elderly Christian known by all in the community for his godly life and fervent lifelong love for his Saviour. The elderly saint was sitting with his dog on his porch enjoying a beautiful sunset. After greeting him, the young man asked his question, "Why is it that so many Christians are so zealous for the Lord right after they are saved but eventually seem to give up and slip back into living like the world - acting just like they did before they were saved? You have been a Christian for many years and you always seem so happy in the Lord. What makes you different?"

There was silence as the old saint thought. Then smiling, he spoke. "Young man, let me tell you a story. One day I was sitting here with my dog when a large rabbit ran across the yard right in front of us. My dog jumped up and took off after that rabbit, excitedly chasing after him all over those hills. His barking caused several other neighbourhood dogs to join him in the chase. It wasn't long, however, before those dogs seemed to lose interest in the chase. One by one they all left and before long only my dog was still eagerly chasing the rabbit.

"That story is the answer to your question."

The young Christian sat silent, confused. Then bursting out, he said, "I don't understand. How does dogs chasing a rabbit answer my question about faithfully following Christ?" In a gentle voice the old saint replied, "Perhaps you have trouble understanding what I meant because you didn't ask the right question." "Well, what is the right question?", he frowned. Smiling, the old man continued, "You should have asked, why didn't the other dogs continue chasing after the rabbit."

The young man silently considered the question. Unable to think of an answer he looked questioningly into the old brother's face.

"They never saw the rabbit", was the gentle answer. (The Christian Shepherd - November 2007)

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May 18

"My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me."
(John 10:27)

The quietness of communion is but little known, not to say enjoyed, in this busy active day. How truly the moment speaks loudly of unrest and unreality; and how little is known even among the saints of that deep, personal, unexpressed joy in Christ.

The satisfaction of the heart in the personal nearness of the Lord, the being in His company for the simple joy of it, is true communion; thus it is we have common mind with Him, which is the meaning of communion. When this is the case, we know the mind of our Lord and Master, and this it is which qualifies us for every service as Christ's confidential servants, rather than the amount of our service or the laboriousness of our work. (W.T.T. - Christian Truth - Vol. - 20 -- March 1967)

N.J. Hiebert - 4437

May 19

"He was despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief . . . He was despised, and we esteemed Him not."
(Isaiah 53:3)

A life of praise is not something that can be worked up. Rather, it is a remembrance and a response to Christ's sacrificial death on our behalf. As we reflect on who Christ is and what He has accomplished for us, what He provides in our daily lives as an advocate before God, and what He has promised for out future, our hearts are melted before Him. We bow at His feet in humble adoration and proclaim with all sincerity, "Hallelujah, what a Saviour!"

It is said that the word Hallelujah is basically the same in all languages. It seems as though God has given this word as a preparation for the great celebration of heaven, when His children from every tribe, language, people, and nation shall have been gathered home to sing their eternal "Hallelujah to the Lamb!"

Philip P. Bliss, along with Ira Sankey, was one of the truly important leaders and publishers of early gospel music. Before his tragic train accident death at the age of 38, he wrote hundreds of of gospel songs, many of which are still widely sung today. "Hallelujah, What a Saviour!" is one of the best and most enduring of the songs produced by Bliss. The first four stanzas present Christ's atoning work simply and clearly. The last stanza, "When He comes, our glorious King," is in an entirely different mood, joyful and triumphant in its anticipation of the praise that will continue throughout eternity - "Hallelujah, what a Saviour!"

"Man of sorrows!" what a name for the Son of God, who came ruined sinners to reclaim!
Hallelujah, what a Saviour!

Bearing shame and scoffing rude, in my place condemned He stood - sealed my pardon with His blood:
Hallelujah, what a Saviour!

Guilty, vile and helpless we, spotless Lamb of God was He; full atonement! can it be?
Hallelujah, what a Saviour!

Lifted up was He to die, "It is finished," was His cry; now in heav'n exalted high:
"Hallelujah, what a Saviour!

When He comes, our glorious King, all His ransomed home to bring; then anew this song we'll sing:
Hallelujah, what a Saviour!
(Amazing Grace - Kenneth W.Osbeck)

N.J. Hiebert - 4438

May 20

"He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things!"
(Romans 8:32)

When Christ hung on the Cross He not only made provision for the removal of the weight of our sin, but also for the indwelling presence of the Spirit in the heart; for joy unspeakable and full of glory; for peace that passeth all understanding; for strength to make us more than conquerors through Him that loved us; in short - He blessed us with all spiritual blessings in the Heavenly places in Himself. If you do not have these joys you are not getting out of Christianity that which God desired you to have. (Happy Though Poor - Donald Grey Barnhouse)

N.J. Hiebert - 4439

May 21

"I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord."
(Ephesians 4:1)

The great Apostle called himself "The prisoner of the Lord;"
He was not held by Roman chains nor kept in Caesar's ward;
Constrained by love alone, by cords of kindness bound,
The bond-slave of the living Christ, true liberty he found.

Oh happy those who see in poverty and pain,
In weakness and in toil, their Father's golden chain;
Who feel no prison walls though shut in narrow ways,
And though in darkness fettered fast can still rejoice and praise;
From sin's dread bondage bought, they own their Master's ward,
They bear the brand of Christ, blest prisoners of the Lord
!
(Annie Johnson Flint)

N.J. Hiebert - 4440

May 22

"Our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory."
(2 Corinthians 4:17)

God chooses my circumstances, my sicknesses, my sorrows, in view of what He is accomplishing. "We do know that all things work together for good to those who love God. . . . Because whom He has foreknown, He has also predestinated to be conformed to the image of His Son." (Romans 8:28,29). He thus chooses the the circumstances for us that will best accomplish His purpose of conforming us to the image of His Son. The consequence is that, if in the line of His purpose, I will never seek to change my circumstances. In fellowship with the heart of God I will gratefully leave that to Him.

How merciful it is in the ways of God that it is only gradually we approach our sorrows, and that we find when they come upon us that they are "lustred with His love"!

He alone who has made the blank in your life can fill it, and He will. When all the blanks of earth are filled with His presence we gain infinitely more than we have lost. (Edward Dennett)

N.J. Hiebert - 4441

May 23

"O Lord our Lord, how excellent is Thy name in all the earth!"
(Psalm 8:1)

What a pleasure to enjoy the names of our Lord!

- He is the Almighty God. Consider His creatorial power expressed in so many ways.
- He is Wisdom personified. See His beauty and design in nature, with all its variations of colour and usefulness.
- He is Love, as revealed in Christ Jesus the Lord, who pleased not Himself, but offered Himself as a sacrifice for us sinners.
- He is the God of righteousness and judgment as seen in His perfect Word.
- He is the Blessed God whose joy is reflected in His own who rejoice in Him, who give thanks and praise to His name. (Ben Tuininga)

O Lord, how wondrous and great is Thine exalted name!
The glories of Thy heavenly state, let men and babes proclaim.

N.J. Hiebert - 4442

May 24

"And when forty years were expired, there appeared to him in the wilderness . . . an angel of the Lord . . . saying, . . . now come, I will send thee into Egypt."
(Acts 7:30-34)

Often the Lord calls us aside from our work for a season, and bids us be still and learn ere we go forth again to minister. There is no time lost in such waiting hours.

Fleeing from his enemies, the ancient knight found that his horse needed to be re-shod. Prudence seemed to urge him on without delay, but higher wisdom taught him to halt a few minutes at the blacksmith's forge by the way, to have the shoe replaced; and although he heard the feet of his pursuers galloping hard behind, yet he waited those minutes until his charger was refitted for his flight. And then, leaping into his saddle just as they appeared a hundred yards away, he dashed away from them with the fleetness of the wind, and knew that his halting had hastened his escape.

So often God bids us tarry ere we go, and fully recover ourselves for the next stage of the journey and work. (Days of Heaven Upon Earth)

N.J. Hiebert - 4443

May 25

"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."
(Matthew 5:16)

How is it that our domestic life often falls so sadly short of being the expression and reflector of our heavenly relationship? Is it not because we have so little entered, in the power of an ungrieved Spirit, into a fuller and deeper realization of our heavenly relationships, either from want of sound and solid instruction in the truth, or from our own culpable (guilty) neglect of prayerful meditation upon that word which is truth?

Let me take a household article for an illustration.

The pendulum of a clock rests upon a pivot above, else it would not move below. Now the pivot, on which it is suspended, is within the clock, invisible; but there above is the starting-point for the visible movement of the pendulum below. If anything is wrong up there (from want of oil, or through rust, etc.) the pendulum stops, or moves irregularly, and with a moaning noise, below.

. . . the Holy Spirit takes pains first of all, to set before the soul the full truth of a settled relationship, resting upon our Blessed Saviour and His work, and as unchangeable and unmovable, as are Christ and His work. Then, as flowing from it, and in the closest connection with it, comes the responsibility (as to practicable walk), becoming such a relationship, and its natural result - if realized by the power of the Spirit. (J.A. von Poseck)

N.J. Hiebert - 4444

May 26

"Though the Lord be high, yet hath He respect unto the lowly: but the proud He knoweth afar off."  (Psalm 138:6)

As with repentant hearts we bow in submission to the will of God we obtain the grace needed to triumph over every foe. We need not even fear the great arch-enemy of God and men, the devil. We need not run in terror from his assaults or faint in fear when he seeks to overcome us. All we need to do is to stand firmly on the ground of redemption, resisting Satan in the power of faith. Notice how both James and Peter agree in this as they write under the guidance of the overruling Holy Spirit. Here James says, "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." Peter declares:

"Your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: whom resist steadfast in the faith."
(1 Peter 5:8,9).

By the use of the Word and in dependence on God in prayer we become impregnable against the assaults of the evil one. The old saying is true,

"Satan trembles when he sees,
The weakest saint upon his knees."
(Selected)

N.J. Hiebert - 4445

May 27

"I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me."
(Galatians 2:20)

Faith knows nothing sure but God and His Word.

Faith takes God's Word and locks it up in the very innermost chamber of the heart, and there it remains as hid treasure. The happy possessor of this treasure is rendered thoroughly independent of the world.

Faith knows nothing positive, nothing real, but the Word of the living God.
(Food for the Desert)

N.J. Hiebert - 4446

May 28

"He is before all things, and by Him all things consist."
(Colossians 1:17)

"For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow His steps."
(1 Peter 2:21)

If you and I have taken the place of owning Christ as Lord, we shall be sure to have a little bit of suffering.
If He is Lord over me, I must do everything to please Him, and, I shall be sure to displease friends.
I must give up this thing and not do the other, cost what it may, if He is Master.
(Gleanings of G.V. Wigram)

N.J. Hiebert - 4447

May 29

"Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all."
(1 Timothy 4:15)

The material for meditation is the Word of God; for that is the only book that is distinctly and exclusively authoritative. It has been said, "people prefer to drink at any other source than the original." There - is a lesson for us! Devotional and expository volumes are of great value - of very great value; but while they are admirable helps, they are miserable substitutes for the Bible itself. The Bible is the one Book wherein, for thousands of years, the spirit of man has found light and nourishment, and a response to whatever was deepest in his heart.

Meditation is the digestive faculty of the soul, which converts the Word into real and proper nourishment, and produces the most happy results. "Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart" (Jeremiah 15:16). Note the process and results: "finding", which corresponds to the New Testament word "search"; "eating", or "appropriating", which answers to "meditation"; "rejoicing", the inevitable consequence of searching, and reflecting on what is found. (In Pastures Green)

N.J. Hiebert - 4448

May 30

"And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ. . . ."
(2 Corinthians 5:18)

Paul encouraged the Athenians by reminding them that God was not far from any one of them, that it was He in whom they lived and moved and had their being. Yet men think of Him as farther away than the farthest star. The truth is that He is nearer to us than we are to ourselves!

But how can the conscious sinner bridge the mighty gulf that separates him from God in living experience? The answer is that he cannot, but the glory of the Christian message is that Christ did! Through the blood of His cross He made peace that he might reconcile all things unto Himself: "And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath He reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in His sight" (Colossians 1:21,22).

The new birth makes us partakers of the divine nature. There the work of undoing the dissimilarity between us and God begins. From there it progresses by the sanctifying operation of the Holy Spirit till God is satisfied.

That is the theology of it, but even the regenerated soul may sometimes suffer from the feeling that God is far from him. Put away the evil from you, believe, and the sense of nearness will be restored. God was never away in the first place! (A.W. Tozer)

N.J. Hiebert - 4449

May 31

"And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:7).

When you have a need, instead of worrying and fussing about it, present your need to our Father right away. Stop what you are doing; get on your knees and pour your heart out to the Father. Our loving God and Father is waiting and wants to hear all about it. He will not always say yes, but He will always give us His peace. If we will but trust Him and put our cares before His heart, He will put His peace into ours. (Submitted by a reader- S.L.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4450

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