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

Sunday, April 01, 2012

Gems from April 2012

"That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; and be renewed in the Spirit of your mind; and that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness." (Ephesians 4:22-24)

You can gauge the depth of a Christian's spiritual life by the things he puts first.
Tell me his priorities and you tell me the focus of his life and his relationship with the Lord.
"Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them" (Matthew 7:20).
The voice from the world says, "Don't tell me how spiritual you are;
Show me by the way you live.
Don't tell me how much you pray,
Show me the effect of prayer by the power of God being manifested in your daily walk.
Don't tell me how much you read the Bible,
Show me how you have applied it by a righteous life and holy living.
Don't tell me how much you love the Lord;
Show me how His love abounds in your life unto others.
Don't tell me you are a Christian;
Show me the evidence through your godly character and committed life to Christ.
(Selected)

N.J. Hiebert - 4742

March 30

"Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world."
(Matthew 28:20)

Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever;
He is still changing men and women from sinners into saints.
He is still giving life to those who are dead in trespasses and sins.
He is still bringing peace to troubled hearts.
He is still releasing men from the bondage of sin.
(Lectures on Acts - H.A. Ironside)

N.J. Hiebert - 4751

March 31

"Where there is no vision, the people perish . . ."
(Proverbs 29:18)

Man has to go through many experiences in order to receive the spiritual vision which is needed to see the divine plan.
Some experiences are hard.
But then nothing that is of great value is easily obtained.
If we let God do the work, He will show us His plan little by little.
One day we shall see it all.
When we feel as if there is nothing but darkness around us,
let us not forget that a film has to be developed in
a darkroom in order to bring out the beauty.
(This Day is the Lord's - Corrie Ten Boom)

N.J. Hiebert - 4752

April 1

"Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me?"
(Psalm 42:11)

David acted with much wisdom; for, since the devil, in seeking to discourage us, appeals to our feelings rather than to our reason, a little commonsense and practical logic will often times lift the gloom and dispel the mists.

The only real occasion for despondency in a Christian is sin; everything else may be brought to the Lord in prayer and supplication with thanksgiving. And if you have the priceless possession of an uncondemning heart, you may take it for certain that the attempt to dishearten you, is the enemy's endeavour to paralyze your energies and to thwart the purposes of God in your life.

A depressed Christian is a prisoner of war, under the power of the enemy, unable efficiently to serve his rightful King. Satan knows this all too well; for this is his very purpose in all the attacks of depression that come upon us. He knows that temptations from without no longer have the effect upon us that they once had, and that the worker in the vineyard will not likely be tempted away from his appointed task by the attractions or the opinions of the world. And so he concentrates on the attempt to get us discouraged, dejected, depressed. (Heaven's Cure for Earth's Care)

N.J. Hiebert - 4753

April 2

"Help, Lord, for the godly man ceaseth (is gone); for the faithful fail from among the children of men." (Psalm 12:1)

It is such an encouragement to know that all the work that God has accomplished through His servants in this world He has done through imperfect instruments. He has never had a perfect instrument. The Lord Jesus, of course, was perfect, but He was more than an instrument. He was God Himself manifest in the flesh. But all the merely human servants that God has ever had have blundered somewhere.

- Noah - failed terribly after the flood when he came under the power of wine.
- Abraham - denied his wife.
- Isaac - failed because of fleshly appetite.
- Jacob - what a record of blundering and failure was his!
- Moses - his spirit was provoked at the waters of Meribah, as a result of which he was not permitted to enter into the land of Canaan.
- David - what a blot there was on his record, though he bitterly repented of his sin!
- John - as the gentlest and most loving of the Lord's disciples, and yet John and James would have called down fire from heaven and burned up the city of the Samaritans because they refused the testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ.
- Peter - denied his Lord.
- Thomas - doubted.

Over all of them "failure" could be written. And yet God used these men in spite of their failures, in spite of their lack of judgment, and He brought them to repentance because of their sin and He cleansed them from all unrighteousness, and gave opportunity after opportunity to magnify His grace. (Selected)

N.J. Hiebert - 4754

April 3

"Even so ye, forasmuch as ye are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek that ye may excel to the edifying of the church."
(1 Corinthians 14:12)

Just inside the main entrance to Carnegie College in Dunfermline, Scotland, is a statue of a youth.
It is called "Ambition Statue" and the inscription on it reads
"Let noble ambition be the thirst of youth."
Perhaps you are young and ambitious to be the best or to do the best?
Would you consider being ambitious for God?
Perhaps to do something that would make a difference to your assembly and its members?
Perhaps to be part of leading a soul to the Saviour?
Ambition for Him is the greatest ambition of all.
(Choice Gleaning - Brian Powlesland)

Take my life and let it be consecrated Lord to Thee,
Take my moments and my days, let them flow in ceaseless praise.
(Frances Havergal)

N.J. Hiebert - 4755

April 4

"As My Father hath sent me, even so send I you."
(John 20:21)

You must be in present dependence in preaching.
There is no power unless we are receiving while we speak.
What you need is a living connection with the heart of God,
and then what flows out of the heart of God into your heart will come
with power to the hearts of those you speak to.
To hold ourselves at the Lord's disposal
secures for us opened doors when He has work for us to do
.
We are left here to display Christ;
If we are not doing this we are no use to Him or to the world.
The qualification for service is a deeper acquaintance with the heart of Christ.
The more you honour God by keeping man in the background the more blessing you will have in the work.
The Holy Spirit is always ready to work when we exalt Christ, "He shall glorify me."
(Edward Dennett)

N.J. Hiebert - 4756

April 5

"Master . . . at Thy word I will let down the net."
(Luke 5:5)

What perseverance there is on the part of God!
We are called to go on in the same spirit.
It does cost a great deal to go on and on, in spit of everybody and everything;
For us to do so marks the presence of divine power in us,
For God's grace is unwearied.
When no circumstances lead you to have any hope,
Is your hope them in Him?
(Footprints for Pilgrims - JND)

N.J. Hiebert - 4757

April 6

"If thou losest courage in the day of trouble thy strength is small." (JND)
(Proverbs 24:10)

If we want to be among those who are always ready to go the second mile,
which often means being quick to see another's trouble,
then we must not lose courage in our own.
To lose courage is to be "slack".
"If thy strength becomes, as it were, pressed together and bowed down by the difficulty,
just when it ought to show itself, then it is limited. Thou art a weakling." (Delitzsch)
No weakling runs the second mile; if he does not properly run the first.
Luther said, "He is not strong who is not firm in need."
So let us "be strong in the Lord, and the power of His might" (Ephesians 6:10).
(Edges of His Ways - Amy Carmichael)

N.J. Hiebert - 4758

April 8

"He is not here, but is risen."
(Luke 24:6)

"If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart, that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation."
(Romans 10:9-10)

There are tens of thousands of people who observe Easter who know nothing of the risen Christ
as their own personal Saviour.
The Pharisees believed in the resurrection of the dead, yet they denied
the resurrection of the Son of God.
Your mind may believe . . . and yet perhaps you have never rested your soul on the fact that
Jesus died and rose again.
Remember, that is the fundamental Christian confession (Romans 10:9-10).

These verses (Romans 10:9,10) can best be illustrated by the fingers of one hand.
It commences with uncertainty - that little word "IF."
It ends with glorious certainty - "SAVED"
What a wonderful thing it is to be able to say, "Thank God, I am sure that my soul is saved."
Well now, in between there are three "SHALTS"

"IF" - there is the thumb.
"If thou shalt" - there is the first finger.
"If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus and shalt" there it the second finger.
"Believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt" there is the third finger.
"Be saved." the fourth finger.

You have the gospel at your very finger-tips! (Romans 10:9)
It is not enough to believe in resurrection;
It is not enough to believe in Christ's resurrection.
What we need to know is that we have trusted the risen Christ as our own personal Saviour.
(H.A. Ironside)

N.J. Hiebert - 4759

April 9

A Name or a Number

"I will praise Thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are Thy works."
(Psalm 139:14)

Consider this: the body - the face, the features, the colouring - contains marks that identify us as individuals. These marks arise from our DNA and make us recognizable to the naked eye. But they provide more than a point of recognition for the sake of others; they are God's imprint on each of us. These few features have seemingly infinite possibilities when rearranged in different shapes and sizes. And how often each of us vents and complains to God, either implicitly or explicitly, wanting a better personal design: "If only I had a stronger back to do what I need to do!" "If only I had a more powerful voice that would convey authority!"

Even those we regard as heroes of the faith have not escaped such thoughts.
In the Old Testament, God called Moses to lead the Israelites out of Egypt, but Moses kept coming up with all kinds of excuses for why he was a poor choice. To Moses' observation that he was "slow of speech and tongue," God said, "Who gave man his mouth?" in effect asking, "Who made your mouth, Moses" (see Exodus 4:10-11). Granted, God designed the question to remind Moses that since God had made his mouth, God could use it as He saw fit; but the point is well taken.

We are fearfully and wonderfully made. Every time we make something artificial to duplicate what we have or had naturally, we once more recognize the intricate nature of the design, even with its weaknesses. (The Great Weaver - Ravi Zacharias)

N.J. Hiebert - 4760

April 10

"The Lord is good unto them that wait for Him, to the soul that seeketh Him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord."
(Lamentations 3:25,26)

Wait for God!
We are too feverish, too hasty, too impatient.
It is a great mistake. Everything comes only to those who can wait.
"They that wait on the Lord shall inherit the earth" (Psalm 37:9).

You may have had what Joseph had when still a lad,
a vision of power and usefulness and blessedness.
But you cannot realize it in fact.
All your plans miscarry.
Every door seems shut.
The years are passing over you with the depressing sense that you have not wrought any deliverance in the earth.
Now turn your heart to God; accept His will;
tell Him that you leave to Him the realization of your dream.

"Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in Him; and He shall bring it to pass . . . rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him" (Psalm 37:5,7)
(Daily Meditations for Prayer)

N.J. Hiebert - 4761

April 11

"Give me a man" (1 Samuel 17:10).
"I sought for a man . . . but I found none" (Ezekiel 22:30).
"I have found a man." (Daniel 2:25).
"The Man Christ Jesus" (1 Timothy 2:5).

Israel's history could be summed up as the search for man;
A champion to fight their battles;
A spiritual stalwart to arrest their spiritual decline;
A full prophet of God's thoughts.

Our Lord Jesus Christ exceeded all these requirements.

He destroyed the devil (Hebrews 2:14).
He communicated divine principles (Hebrews 1:2).
He taught with the authority of Deity (Matthew 7:29).

God found His Man.
We share His delight in Him.
(Adapted)

N.J. Hiebert - 4762

April 12

Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved.”
(John 13:23)

"We make a most serious mistake, when, in any time of need or pressure, we turn only to man rather than the Lord for help or sympathy. We are sure to be disappointed. Our Father will allow us to prove the vanity and folly of all creature-confidences, human hopes, and earthly expectations. And on the other hand, He will prove to us, in the most touching and personal manner, the truth and blessedness of His own Word."

They shall not be ashamed that wait for Me” Isaiah 49:23.

No, never! He, blessed be His name, never fails a trusting heart. He cannot, nor would He, deny Himself. He delights to take occasion from our needs, our woes and weaknesses, to express and illustrate His tender care and loving-kindness, in a thousand ways.” (C.H.Mackintosh -S.L.)

And that He might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy,
which He had afore prepared unto glory
” (Romans 9:23).

One there is above all others - Oh how He loves!”

N.J. Hiebert - 4763

April 13

"He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world."
(Ephesians 1:4)

The people of God will never understand what manner of people they ought to be down here, unless they have laid hold of the Lord's thoughts about them.
Those three things, their origin, security, and destiny, must be brought to bear on every other truth presented.
His love in letting those thoughts flow out in our hearing, ought to be very greatly marked by us.
Having come out of heaven, and going back there, leaving us such a record of the
Father's love to those that were chosen in Him before thy had a beginning.
(G.V. Wigram)

N.J. Hiebert - 4764

April 14

"Blessed is that servant, whom his Lord when he cometh shall find so doing."
(Matthew 24:46)

A story is related, which has to do with the Second Coming of our blessed Lord and
the general dissemination of this precious truth.
At last it reached some people as they worked in the cotton fields. Said one of the of the old brethren,
"What's the use of us picking cotton if the Lord is coming back?"
Scores of others agreed.
The cotton pickers stopped their work and the cotton wasted in the fields.
Everybody was busy attending conferences and camp-meetings,
singing the praises of God, and looking for His return.
The following winter was one of great need and privation.
Their crops had been so woefully neglected.
Then one of their number, an evangelist, began preaching on this text:
"Blessed is that servant, whom his Lord when He cometh shall find so doing."
Before long the people were once again tilling their ground and picking cotton in the rows.

"Work for the night is coming, Work thro' the morning hours;
Work, while the due is sparkling, Work 'mid springing flowe'rs
Work when the day grows brighter, Work in the glowing sun;
Work, for the night is coming, When man's work is done."

"Work for the night is coming, Work thro' the sunny noon;
Fill brightest hours with labour, Rest comes sure and soon.
Give ev'ry flying minute Something to keep in store;
Work for the night is coming, When man works no more."
(Anna Coghill 1836-1907)

"OCCUPY TILL I COME!!"

"When He calls me, I will answer;
I'll be somewhere working when He comes!"
(Mountain Trailways for Youth)

N.J. Hiebert - 4765

April 15

"For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord . . . but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God; who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works but, according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began."
(2 Timothy 1:7-9)

Too often we are afraid to speak about the salvation offered by our Lord Jesus Christ!
It may be because we do not feel confident enough, thinking that we lack the
power or ability to answer all of the imaginable questions that might be raised.
But the power is not in our ability.
It is in His Spirit who dwells in us!
We may imagine that a lost soul could never be born again
by the help of a word about Christ Jesus from our lips,
but that is not humility.
It is doubt!
We should never doubt His power.
After all He was able to use a donkey (Numbers 22:28-31),
A rooster (Matthew 26:34),
A burning bush (Exodus 3:2).
And He surely can use you!
(R. Salcido)

N.J. Hiebert - 4766

April 16

"My soul, wait thou only upon God: for my expectation is from Him. He only is my rock and my salvation . . . trust in Him at all times."
(Psalm 62:5-8)

This is true devotedness.
The soul that really occupies this ground of true devotedness will ever be clothed with a spirit of worship.
Faith ever counts on God.
God reveals Himself to faith; and faith responds in praise and adoration.
Nothing could be simpler!
(C.H. Macintosh)

N.J. Hiebert - 4767

April 17

"Being justified by faith, we have peace with God, through our Lord Jesus Christ."
(Romans 5:1)

We have peace WITH God. But many who have it do not move on to experience the peace OF God "Which passeth all understanding." The peace OF God grows out of peace WITH God; it is ours and waiting for us to claim it. We have entrusted our souls, our future, the issues of eternity, with Him and believe we shall be saved. But we ought to leave with Him as well all life's cares and burdens and worries and know the calm of His daily presence. If He can keep the larger issues, surely He can carry the smaller!

In an age of noise and hubbub - feverish, restless, fretful, nerve-racking. The scarcest thing among us is peace. The world does not have it; and many of us believers allow care and fear and uncertainty to harass us quite as much as does the world. But no believer has any right to live so. Whoever was more battered by perverse circumstances than Jesus? Yet on His darkest day, He said to His followers,

"These things I have spoken unto you. . . . Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you."
(John 14:27)

If you first have made peace with God, go on to realize His peace. Leave your concerns in His hand and believe He will hold them; simply trust and obey; if the old bothers come back to plague you, do not entertain them and shut the door in their faces. So shall the old attitude of worry and fear drop away and you shall grow into the tranquil sense of His presence. It is His will for you for "God hath called us to peace." And it is His promise for "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee: because He trusteth in Thee." (Vance Havner - In Tuner With Heaven - August 2, 1931)

N.J. Hiebert - 4768

April 18

"To set at liberty them that are bruised."
(Luke 4:18)

Seeking the lost, and pointing to Jesus,
Souls that are weak and hearts that are sore;
Leading them forth in ways of salvation,
Showing the path to life evermore.
(William A. Ogden)

I recently heard a sad statement concerning our society,
"Hurt people, hurt people."
May God help us to recognize the great scope and sad cycle of this world's problems.
But not to simply know the problems, but to point to the solution and
Recruit ourselves to the service of helping hurt people -
Through Christ liberating them from the bruises buried beneath the surface of outer appearances.
May God help us to love one another as He has commanded,
By this will all men know that we are God's and God is love .
(R.M.B.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4769

April 19

"I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there ye may be also"
(John 14:3).

"For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord." (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)

Christ will return personally (Acts 1:11).
The anticipation of Christ's coming places a responsibility upon believers both individually and corporately even now to live lives of purity (1 John 3:3). To be involved in getting the gospel to every nation before His return (Matthew 24:14; Mark 13:10).
(Adapted - Kenneth W. Osbeck)

It may be at morn, when the day is awaking, when sunlight thru darkness and shadow is breaking, That Jesus will come in the fullness of glory to receive from the world His own.

It may be at mid-day, it may be at twilight, it may be perchance, that the blackness of midnight will burst into light in the blaze of His glory when Jesus receives His own.

O joy! O delight! should we go without dying, no sickness, no sadness, no dread and no crying, caught up through the clouds with our Lord into glory, when Jesus receives His own.

Chorus: O Lord Jesus, how long, how long ere we shout the glad song - Christ returneth! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Amen.
(H.L. Turner)

N.J. Hiebert - 4770

April 20

"Search the scriptures."
(John 5:39)

The word "search" is a strong one. It implies a thorough examination, such as that of the civil engineer who maps out a newly discovered coast line.

An old man lay dying. He called his sons to his bedside and said: "I leave you, my sons, all the wealth I possess. There is a great mass of riches buried underneath in my vineyard, but you must discover it for yourselves."

After their father's death the sons dug and raked the soil with all their might, taking care not to injure the roots of the vines. Not a particle of gold did they find, and they were sorely disappointed. But the work they had done caused the vines to produce as they had never produced before.

Next year there was an enormous crop of grapes which brought them a great sum of money. Then they understood the meaning of the trick their wise father had played on them.

The wealth he had left was in the soil, but their labour was needed to turn it into riches. (The Wonderful Word)

N.J. Hiebert - 4771

April 21

"Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom."
(Luke 12:32)

They were rather to get rid of what they had as men, and to provide things such as the Father gives to to the heirs of the kingdom. They were to act the part of kings called to and having a higher inheritance.
The heart follows the treasure.
Let them provide a treasure in the Heavens and their heart will be there also. The great saint is not the value of what they give meritoriously, but the effect internally suitable to their position and their calling. God is not ashamed to be called their God.
(The Man of Sorrows - JND)

N.J. Hiebert - 4772

April 22

"If any man . . . open the door, I will come in."
(Revelation 3:20)

When Christ Waits

What a wonderful thing is this That man may choose as he will To open the door and let Christ in, Or make Him wait at the sill!

The sovereign Lord of the universe, Courteous, stands and knocks; He will not batter the shut door down, Nor break the bolts and locks.

For man has the power of choice, He can lift the latch if he will; There is no nob on the outer side, And the Lord Christ waits at the sill.

He patiently knocks and patiently waits For man to open the door; Beware the day when His patience ends, And the pierced Hand knocks no more!
(Annie Johnson Flint)

N.J. Hiebert - 4773

April 23

"Whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after Me, cannot be my disciple."
(Luke 14:27)
"If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, 
and take up his cross daily, and follow me."  (Luke 9:23)

We learn there are two things to be noted here. The first is that the cross is to be taken up voluntarily:
"If any man will."

The taking up of the cross is something entirely different from submission to inevitable suffering. It means the willing acceptance of burdens that need not be borne apart from loyalty to Christ. And the second is, that this must be done daily: Not occasional and exceptional heroism, but for a life which in its commonest hours is sacrificial.

Does the road wind uphill all the way? Yes, to the very end: Does the day's journey take the whole long day? From morn till night, my friend. (In Pastures Green)

N.J. Hiebert - 4774

April 24

"Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God."
(2 Corinthians 1:4)

She was a great sufferer too, and daily wrestled with her pitiful disease. But, like the sturdier of the poplar trees by my gate, she had gathered into herself the force of all the cruel winds that had beaten so savagely upon her. And the result was that her own character had become so strong and so upright and so beautiful . . . that every man and maiden who needed counsel or succour made a beaten path to her open door.

God does not comfort us to make us COMFORTABLE, but to make us COMFORTERS.
(Traveling Toward Sunrise)

N.J. Hiebert - 4775

April 25

"Let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. . . . God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able."
(1 Corinthians 10:12,13)

What we have to do, whether to Christians, to backsliders, or to sinners, is to maintain the attitude of God towards each of these classes. He never gives up one of His own, nor diminishes His love, though He does change His manner.

As some one has said, we do not cease to love, but we do not caress a naughty child. The perfection of the Christian life is absolute trust in God. All roads lead to this, and the one who reaches it in any measure will never be confounded.
(Edward Dennett)

N.J. Hiebert - 4776

April 26

"We have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand."
(Romans 5:2)

It is not attainments, It is not watchfulness, it is not services or duties which give . . . the soul entrance into that wealthy place of divine favour. "By faith we have access into this grace wherein we stand." If we find our souls under pressure of the spirit of fear or bondage or uncertainty we may be sure that they have let go the gentle hand of faith. . . .

This ought not to be so. We are to know that we have ever to do with love!

"Father" - a name that may give abiding calmness and strength and liberty to the soul. The tempter would lead us to judge of God by the dark shadings of many a passage of our history here. But the Spirit of God would have us acquaint ourselves with Him in the beauteous light of the gospels, the glory that shines now in the face of Jesus Christ.
(J.G. Bellett)

N.J. Hiebert - 4777

April 27

Love is Preeminent

"Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity (love), I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.

And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.

And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing."
(1 Corinthians 13:1-3)

It is greater than anything we can say. (verse 1)
It is greater than anything we can posses. (verse 2)
It is greater than anything we can bestow. (verse 3)

It is contrasted with eloquence, illumination, insight, knowledge, faith, benevolence, and martyrdom. That sevenfold contrast brings out the solemn lesson that endowment is no substitute for character; that it is not brilliance but goodness that counts in the estimation of heaven.
(A Trinity of Christian Graces)

N.J. Hiebert - 4778

April 28

"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: . . . But made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men."
(Philippians 2:5,7)

"Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin."
(1 Peter 4:1)

Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus: Here the thought is selflessness. Arm yourselves also with the same mind: Here the thought is willingness for suffering. Do you seem unable to do much?

Are you tempted to feel you are of no use at all? The only thing that can hinder a life from telling for Him is the mind that puts self in the center, And the mind that refuses suffering. May we desire from the Lord Jesus Christ the mind that was in Him.
(Whispers of His Power - Amy Carmichael)

N.J. Hiebert - 4779

April 29

Firm Anchors for Fear

"Then fearing lest we should have fallen upon rocks, they cast four anchors out of the stern, and wished for day."
(Acts 27:29)

A short time before, those on board the ship had given up all hope of being saved. Now they fear lest the boat be driven onto the rocks and their lives lost! This is progress! So it is that a restrored believer will surely have a very tender conscience - a Godly fear of the rocks which might cause another spiritual disaster.

In an effort to keep from the rocks, the sailors cast out four anchors. As a soul once again finds the Christian joy lost through disobedience, God's Word will become the only safe anchor for every circumstance of life. Four in Scripture symbolizes what is universal. So too there will be a fresh sense that the Bible is universally applicable to every area and every detail of our lives.

It was still night, but evidently the storm was abating and they realized that with the coming of daylight they would finally be able to see. How eagerly they must have looked for that day! We are called children of the day (1 Thessalonians 5:5) and we ought never to feel comfortable walking in the moral night of this world.

We read in Psalm 30:5, " . . . weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning". The Lord would have us walk in the light of day, as He is in the light and that He wants us to always to be looking and longing for the daylight of His promised return. "Even so, come, Lord Jesus" (Revelation 22:20). (The Journey of life - D.N.)

N.J. Hiebert - 4780

April 30

Contentment is the Fruit of an Education

"I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content."
(Philippians 4:11)

From the first three words of our verse - "I have learned" we gather that this delightful condition of soul came to Paul, not by revelation but by experience. Nor was it acquired in a moment; for the words imply a long process of training. From the context, too, it is clear that Paul's teacher was Christ, and that the various experiences of life were the text-books from which he gained the priceless instruction. From all this we gather that this lesson can be learned effectively only by those who know the Saviour personally.

Thou hast made us for Thyself, O Lord, and we are restless and unhappy and dissatisfied till we rest in Thee. The true education is that of the heart. The enduring riches are not those of the purse, but of the mind;

Spiritual, not material. In prison Paul was free, In weakness strong, In chains exultant, In exile triumphant, In the drear winter of old age his spirit was quickened with immortal spring.
(George Henderson)

N.J. Hiebert - 4781

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