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

Monday, August 01, 2016

Gems from August 2016

July 31

"When Pharaoh drew nigh, the childen of Israel lifted up their eyes, and, behold, the Egyptians marched after them; and they were sore afraid: and the children of Israel cried out unto the LORD."  (Exodus 14:10)

Wouldn’t you be?  After all they were trapped.  All of them.  The Egyptians-looking for vengeance, were behind them-the entire army! And the Israelites had no forces to protect themselves
or oppose the enemy.
They had nowhere to go!

And yet the Lord had described the situation exactly to Moses beforehand (vv. 2-4) with the explanation that He intended to demonstrate His invincible power. So they, as we today, had nothing to do but to
 “Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord” (v. 13).  
(G.W. Seale)

As we travel through life’s shadowed valley, 
fresh springs of His love ever rise,
And we learn that our sorrow and losses 
are blessings just sent in disguise.
(—Anon)

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August 1


SO NEAR AND YET SO FAR

"Thou art not far from the kingdom of God" (Mark 12:34).

If people are not sure whether they are Christians or not,
then I take leave to suggest that they are not. 
The Christian, according to the New Testament, 
is someone who can say something like this: 
"I was--I am.” 

That is how the apostle described the Corinthians, was it not--He said, 
"And such were some of you!” 
They had been drunkards, adulterers, fornicators, etc. "But," he says, 
"you are not like that nowBut ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, 
but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, 
and by the Spirit of our God' (1 Corinthians 6:11). 

The apostle Peter used exactly the same terminology: 
"Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: 
which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy" (1 Peter 2:10).
 That is it!
(Martyn Lloyd-Jones - Walking with God) 

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August 2

RESCUE THE PERISHING

The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He hath sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives.”
(Isaiah 61:1)

Fanny J. Crosby, often called the “queen of gospel music,“ recalled how she wrote this challenging hymn:

I remember writing that hymn in the year 1869.  Like many of my hymns, it was written following a personal experience at the New York City Bowery Mission.  I usually tried to get to the mission at least one night a week to talk to “my boys.” I was addressing a large company of working men one hot summer evening, when the thought kept forcing itself on my mind that some mother's boy must be rescued that night or he might be eternally lost.  So I made a pressing plea that if there was a boy present who had wandered from his mother’s home and teaching, he should come to me at the end of the service. A young man of 18 came forward - “Did you mean me, Miss Crosby?  I promised my mother to meet her in heaven, but as I am now living, that will be impossible.”

We prayed for him and suddenly he arose with a new light in his eyes - “Now I am ready to meet my mother in heaven, for I have found God.”

Rescue the perishing, care for the dying, snatch them in pity from sin and the grave;
weep o’er the erring one, lift up the fallen, tell them of Jesus, the mighty to save. 

Down in the human heart, crushed by the tempter, feelings lie buried that grace can restore;
touched by a loving heart, wakened by kindness, cords that are broken will vibrate once more.

Rescue the perishing, duty demands it - strength for thy labour the Lord will provide;
back to the narrow way patiently win them, tell the poor wand’rer a Saviour has died.

Chorus: Rescue the perishing, care for the dying; Jesus is merciful, Jesus will save. 
(Fanny J. Crosby)

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August 3

“Whither shall I go from Thy Spirit? or whither shall I flee from Thy presence?  
If I ascend up into heaven, Thou art there: if I make my bed in hell (in the depths), behold Thou art there.If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost  parts of the sea; Even there shall Thy hand lead me, and Thy right hand shall hold me.  If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me.  Yea, the darkness hideth not from Thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to Thee.” 
(Psalm 139:7-12)

We cannot shake off the presence of God! When our doors are shut, and curtains drawn, and all is still, and darkest night fills our chamber, and we are left alone to the companionship of our thoughts--it might keep them pure and holy to say, as if we saw two shining eyes looking on us out of the darkness. Thou God, seest me!” (Genesis 16:13)

The world called that man mad, who imagined that he saw God's eye looking on him . . . out of every star of the sky, and every flower of the earth, and every leaf of the forest, from the ground which He trod upon, from the walls of his lonely chamber, and out of the gloomy depths of night! 
Mad! It was a blessed and holy imagination!

May God help you to feel yourselves at all times in His presence!
(Thomas Guthrie 1803-1873)

“Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in His sight: but all things are naked and open unto the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.” 
(Hebrews 4:13)

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August 4

"Herod . . . proceeded further to take Peter also . . . and when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him.”
(Acts 12:3-4)

Herod judged that he had made a grand step when he took Peter, and he put four quaternions of soldiers beside him—sixteen soldiers—to guard one solitary man!  Peter had escaped from prison once before, and no one knew how he got out (Acts 5).
   
But Peter knew the Lord could take him out again, if He so willed.  It is a grand thing to know God, and an awful thing not to know Him.  Peter knew God, and slept peacefully, while Herod, recollecting what had taken place in days gone by, put these sixteen soldiers to guard him, four at a time, by watches.  

Of these two were chained to him, one stationed at the door of his dungeon, and one a little farther off, at the prison door outside.  Herod’s excessive precautions were evidently designed to make a second escape impossible to Peter.  But Herod was leaving God out of his reckoning. What availed all his bolts, bars, sentinels, and “two chains” upon his prisoner, if God stepped in?  - We shall see.

“Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him (v. 5).  To turn to Herod they knew was in vain, to turn to God was their only resource in this critical moment. God has ever been the help of His people.   The case seemed very hopeless.

The assembly besought God for Peter  “without ceasing” (v. 5).

"But there’s a power which man can wield, when mortal aid is vain; 
God’s eye, God’s arm, God’s love to reach, God’s list’ning ear to gain.
That power is prayer, which soars on high, through Jesus, to the throne,
And moves the hand, which moves the world, to bring deliv’rance down.

Many were gathered together praying . . . Peter knocked at the door of the gate
. . . when they had opened the door  and saw [Peter] they were astonished” (Acts 12:12-16).
(W.T.P Wolston)

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August 5

“The King hath brought me into His chambers; we will be glad and rejoice in Thee; we will remember Thy love more than wine; the upright love Thee.”
(Song of Solomon 1:4)

We have the result, the happy fruit, of the drawing and the running.
The prayer expressed conscious weakness, and dependence, combined with holy diligence.
They have run well and reached the goal; and now they are crowned with joy and gladness.

But, never forget, it is grace that draws, and grace that runs, and grace that crowns, 
and that all flows from the shoreless ocean of the Saviour’s love.

We will remember Thy love more than wine.”  

Now she uses the word “remember,” she knew His love before.
But she is enjoying it with increased interest.
Like air she is surrounded with it, 
she is in it.

The King hath brought me into His chamber.”  
(Song of Solomon - Andrew Miller)

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August 6

"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.”  (Ephesians 1:3)

The little word “all” tells us of the fulness of our blessings. Not a single blessing that Christ, as a man, enjoyed has been kept back.
We are blessed with “all” spiritual blessings.

However much the profession of Christianity may confer outward benefits upon men,
it ever remains true that Christian blessings are spiritual and not material, as with the nation of Israel.
Our blessings are none the less real because they have a spiritual character.
Sonship, acceptance, forgiveness—some of the blessings brought before us in this Scripture—
are  spiritual blessings beyond the reach of this world’s wealth,
but secured through Christ to the simplest believer in Him.

Further, the proper sphere of our blessings is not earth but heaven.
We are blessed “in heavenly places.”  
On earth we may have little; in heaven we are richly blessed.
Unlike earthly blessings they do not depend upon health, 
or riches, or position, or education, or nationality.
They are outside the whole range of things earthly, and will remain in all their fulness when the life in time is finished and our path on earth is closed.
(Ephesians - Hamilton Smith)

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August 7

“Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom 
my soul is well pleased (has found its delight - JND).”
(Matthew 12:18)

Every one found room in the inn save He, but any who wanted to find Him whom angels celebrate must go to the manger.  

 It is the written word Jesus ever uses, and Satan is powerless.
It is written” (Luke 4:4).

What amazing importance Jesus gives the scriptures. 
It was not as an act of divine authority He dismissed Satan, but 
the enemy is proved unable to grapple
with obedience to the word of God. 
Jesus does not reason with Satan.
A single text silences when used in the power of the Spirit.
The whole secret of strength in conflict is using the word of God in the right way.
(Footprints  for Pilgrims - J.N. Darby)

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August 8

“So Jonah was exceeding glad because of the gourd.”
(Jonah 4:6)

Not only was he “glad,” but he was “exceeding glad” because of the gourd, as he had been “exceedingly displeased” because of God’s mercy.

How we delight in those temporal mercies that add to our ease and comfort!
The luxuries of the present day are often to us what Jonah’s 
gourd was to him—the cause of exceeding gladness.

But God prepared a worm when the morning rose the next day, 
and it smote the gourd, that it withered.” (Jonah 4:7)

Whether a whale or a worm, the same word is used.  God prepared them both.

As we see those things which have added to our ease and pleasure, fade and die; 
we may do well to consider whether it is our own loving God who Himself has prepared the worm to make them pass away.

We may learn lessons in adversity, in scorching suns, in poverty and want, that we never could have learned in prosperity and ease and luxury.
(Lessons From Jonah The Prophet - G.Christopher Willis)

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August 9

“That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.” (Ephesians 3:17-19)

"A little child was playing by the shore of the broad blue sea,
And oft he looked away across the waves, so wonderingly:
It was a new entrancing sight to him, that watery waste,
The tossing billows breaking on the sands with foam-wreaths graced;
And often in his distant inland home, with childish glee,
The boy would say to young and older friends: ‘I’ve seen the sea!’  

And so he had; the child made no mistake, his words were true;
But yet, how much of ocean’s vast expanse had met his view?
Only the waves that rippled on the shore; while far away
The broad Atlantic in its depth and strength beyond him lay.
And thus we say we know the love of Christ; and so we do;
’Tis no exaggeration or mistake, but sweetly true.

But ah! how much of that unfathomed love do we yet know?
Only the ripples on the shores of time, that nearer flow.
The mighty ocean of redeeming love rolls deep and wide,
Filling eternity, and heaven and earth, with its vast tide.
We know it by a sweet experience now; yet shall explore 
Its breadth and length, its depth and height of grace, for evermore.”
(Heaven’s Cure for Earth’s Care

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August 10

“Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able
to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.”
(Ephesians 6:16)

Satan cannot touch the obedient believer.
As long as he is kept in dependence and obedience all Satan’s assaults are foiled.

It is easier to keep the enemy out than it is to expel him after he has effected an entrance.

There is not a single operation of the Spirit of God, nor a single form of His working, 
but Satan does not imitate. 

The Spirit and the word of God are sufficient to preserve us from the most dangerous 
simulations of the truth that Satan may present to our souls.

We may rest confidently, whatever the present seeming success of the evil one,
for “the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly.” 
(Romans 16:20)
(Edward Dennett)

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August 11

“And the king said unto Joab . . . bring the young man Absalom again. . . . So Joab arose and went to Geshur, and brought Absalom  to Jerusalem. And the king said, let him turn to his own house, and let him not see my face.  So Absalom returned to his own house, and saw not the king’s face. . . . and Absalom answered . . . let me see the king’s face . . . he came to the king and the king kissed Absalom.
(2 Samuel 14:21-33)  

David’s inordinate tenderness only paved the way for Absalom’s open rebellion.  Terrible warning!
Deal tenderly with evil, and it will assuredly rise to a head, and crush you in the end.
On the other hand, meet evil with a face of flint, and your victory is sure.
Sport not with the serpent, but at once crush it beneath your foot.

Plain, unflinching decision is, after all, the safest and happiest path.
It may be trying at first, but the end is peaceful.
(C.H. Mackintosh)

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August 12

As He IS

“We know that when He shall appear . . . we shall see Him as He is.”
(1 John 3:2)

We shall see Him as He is—let this hope in us undying,
Keep us pure as He is pure, all the wiles of sin defying,

Till before the rainbow throne beauteous beyond all telling,
We shall join unnumbered throngs in the new song, loudly swelling:

“Worthy is is the Lamb once slain Who hath given us salvation,
And redeemed us by His blood out out of every tribe and nation;

Who hath made us kings and priests over all our foes victorious,
Blessing, honour, praise and power, to the King of Saints all glorious.”

Then shall we be satisfied, ended all the soul’s endeavour;
We shall see Him as He is, and shall reign with Him forever.
(Annie Johnson Flint )

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August 13

“And the remnant that is escaped of the house of Judah shall yet again take root downward, and bear fruit upward.”
(2 Kings 19:30)

Judah had suffered greatly under the hand of invading armies and all the crops were destroyed.
If, going forward, there was to be fruit where would it come from?
It is a principle of horticulture that before fruits come roots
Fruit upward demands root downwards.

Planting needed to be undertaken immediately and roots would go downward,
thus, in course of time, producing fruit upward.
So too, spiritually, we must be rooted in faith and love,
in God and His word, before we can expect to bear fruit to His glory.
(Roy Hill)  

O multiply the sower’s seed! and fruit we every hour shall bear,
Throughout the world Thy Gospel spread, the everlasting truth declare.
(Augustus G. Spangenberg)

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August 14

“God loveth a cheerful giver.”
(2 Corinthians 9:7)

Suspicion is the death-blow to all loving intimacy, and God 
would not have it in the midst of His congregation.

There is not a single act of service which we render to 
our Lord that will not be set down in His book;
and not only the substance of the act,
but the style of it also, for 
God appreciates style as well as we do.

He loves a cheerful giver, and a cheerful worker,
because that is precisely what He is Himself.
(Food for the Desert)

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August 15

“I had fainted unless . . .!”
(Psalm 27:13)

"FAINT NOT"
(Galatians 6:9)

Hudson Taylor was so feeble in the closing months of his life that he wrote a dear friend:
"I am so weak I cannot write; 
I cannot read my Bible;
I cannot even pray.
I can only lie still in God’s arms like a little child, and trust.” 

This wondrous man of God with all his spiritual power came to 
a place of physical suffering and weakness where he could only lie still and trust.

And that is all God asks of you, His dear child, 
when you grow faint in the fierce fires of affliction. 
Do not try to be strong. 
Just be still and know that He is God, and will sustain you,
and bring you through.

“God keeps His choicest cordials for our deepest faintings.”

Stay firm and let thine heart take courage.” (Psalm 27:14)
(Streams in the Desert)

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August 16

"He shall choose our inheritance for us, the 
excellency of Jacob whom He loved.”
(Psalm 47:4)

Have you ever looked longingly at another life and wished that you had as much as it has to offer?
But He shall choose, and He does not call the inheritance of any Jacob “poor.”
He calls it the "excellency of Jacob”.

The marvel is not that we have so little to 
offer, but that we have anything at all.
There was no worthiness in Jacob.
"Whom He loved” is the 
only explanation.

But — and is not this comforting? — God needs each separate soul,
each personality with the inheritance of His choice, for the
perfecting of His purpose in the spiritual creation.
And when it is perfected He will be satisfied,
and we too shall be satisfied,
lost in wonder, love and praise” 
that we ever were allowed the smallest 
share in it.
(Amy Carmichael)

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August 17

“Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost.” 
“Rejoice with me; for I have found the piece which I had lost."
“Let us eat, and be merry; for this my son was dead and is alive 
again; he was lost, and is found.  And they began to be merry.”
(Luke 15: 6, 9, 23-24) 

Each of the parables in Luke 15 illustrates the power and beauty of style.  When the man finds his sheep, what does he do?  Does he complain of all the trouble, and commence to drive the sheep home before Him?  Ah! no; this would never do.  What then?  “He layeth it on his shoulders.”  How?  Complaining of the weight or the trouble?  Nay; but “rejoicing”.  

Here we have the lovely style.  He showed that he was glad to get his sheep back again.  The sheep would have been safe on the shoulder, however it had been placed there; but who would part with the word “rejoicing?”  Who would bear to see the substance of the action stripped of its charming style?

So also in the case of the woman and her lost piece of silver.  “She lights a candle, sweeps the house, and seeks.”  How?  With dulness, weariness, and indifference? By no means; but “diligently,” like one whose whole heart was in her work.  It was quite manifest that she really wanted to find the lost piece of silver.  Her style proved this.

Lastly, mark the style of the father in receiving the poor returning prodigal.  “When he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him." He does not send out a servant to tell the erring one to turn aside into one of the out-offices, or betake himself to the kitchen, or even to confine himself to his own room.  No; he himself runs

He must prove that his whole heart is in the reception; and this he does, not merely by the substance of the act, but by his style of doing it.
(C.H. Macintosh)

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August 18

OUR WILLS KEPT FOR JESUS

“If ye ask any thing in My name, I will do it.
If ye love Me, keep My commandments.”
(John 14:14-15)

Keep my will, oh keep it Thine, for it is no longer mine.

Perhaps there is no point in which expectation has been so limited by experience as this. 
We believe God is able to do for us just so much as He has already done, and no more.
We take it for granted a line must be drawn somewhere, and so we choose to draw it where experience ends and faith would have to begin.

Even if we have trusted and proved Him as to keeping our members and our minds,
faith fails when we would go deeper and say, “Keep my will.”
And yet the only reason we have to give is that though we have asked Him to take our will we do not exactly find that it is altogether His but that self-will crops up again and again.

And whatever flaw there might be in this argument, we think the matter is quite settled by the fact that some whom we rightly esteem and who are far better than ourselves have the same experience and do not even seem to think it right to hope for anything better.  
That is conclusive.

And the result of this, as of every other faithless conclusion, is either discouragement  and depression or, still worse, acquiescence in an unyielded will as something that cannot be helped.

Turn from our thoughts to God’s thoughts.

Unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think.
(Ephesians 3:20) 
(Kept for the Master’s Use - Francis Ridley Havergal)

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August 19

“The devil taketh Him up into an exceeding high mountain."
(Matthew 4:8)

“He went up into a mountain, opened His mouth and taught."
(Matthew 5:1-2)

Would’st thou teach others? There is need, but ponder well the thought—
The Lord Himself, the living truth, first practised, then He taught.

Think not to climb where Jesus sat in moral elevation,
Till, like Him, you’ve triumphant left the mountain of temptation.

Dare one exhort, “For food, for drink, for raiment, have no care,”
Who ne’er himself a desert trod, fasting, yet trusting, there?

None may with power divine unfold the Heavenly Kingdom’s story,
Save those who’ve scorned the kingdoms of this world, and all their glory.
(Bells & Pomegranates - James M.S. Tait)

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August 20

“Speaking the truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things.”
(Ephesians 4:15) 

A young man was asked the question,
“What have you found to be the best translation of the New Testament?”
Without a moment’s hesitation he answered, “My mother’s.”
His friend said, “Your mother’s!
I didn’t know she was a scholar.
Did she translate the New Testament?”
"My mother was not a scholar, she could not read a word of Greek, but she translated the New Testament into her beautiful life, and that made more of an impression on me than anything else I have ever known.”

That is what you and I are called upon to do, 
to manifest the truth in our lives.

The love of God has been shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which was 
given unto us and now we are to be controlled by that Holy Spirit.
We are to manifest the love of God in all our dealings with others.

Even,
When truth compels us to contend,
What love with all our strife should blend.
(H.A. Ironside)

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August 21

“For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body,
and in your spirit, which are God’s.”
(1 Corinthians 6:20)

Religions are concerned with sins.
The Bible deals with sin.

Our Lord bore the sin of the world by identification,
taking it upon Himself as if it were  His own, not in sympathy.
And because God had to be true to His words, Jesus had to bear
the punishment for sin: death on the cross.
Ye are bought with a price."
(Corrie Ten Boom)

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August 22

“Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever:
for wisdom & might are His.”
(Daniel 2:20)

All error has a particle of truth in it, and that is why it is so dangerous.
Wisdom and might are His."

A simple utterance, but how profound!
For if wisdom and might are God’s, they are nowhere else to be found,
and it is in vain to turn for them to any but God.

Philanthropy has man for its object, 
religion has God for its object.

Wherever there is a claim to great spirituality there is a danger.
(Footprints for Pilgrims - Edward Dennett)

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August 23

LOVE DIRECTING 

“And Joseph said unto them . . . this do, and live; for I fear God: If ye be true men, let one of your brethren be bound in the house of your prison: go ye, carry corn for the famine of your houses: but bring your youngest brother unto me; so shall your words be verified, and ye shall not die.  And they did so.”
(Genesis 42:18-20)

This was the secret of Joseph’s life.
Through all the vicissitudes of his path from youth to old age he was governed,
not by the dictates of nature, but by the holy fear of God.

Thus it is in the presence of his brethren
he can say, “I fear God” (Genesis 42:18). 
This is the the secret spring of all his actions.  
His thoughts, his words, his ways, were governed by the fear of God.

Nature leaves God out and thinks only of self-vindication, self-gratification, or self-exaltation. 
Faith thinks of God and what is pleasing and due to God.  
Joseph seeks to “serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear" (Hebrews 12:28). 

In the day of his temptation he was kept from the path of evil by the fear of God, for he could say,
How can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” (Genesis 39:9). 
In the day of his exaltation he is kept from taking vengeance on his brethren by the fear of God.
No sorrows in the day of his humiliation, no glories in the day of his exaltation are allowed 
to move his soul from the fear of God.  
He knew how to be abased, and he knew how to abound.

Be the circumstances sad or bright, he ever kept God between himself and his circumstances.
Thus walking in God’s fear he takes God’s way with his brethren, and God’s way was a way of love, and yet not the way of mere human love, which is often a feeble and failing thing, even as men say “love is blind.”

Divine love with its clear vision is not blind to the faults in the objects of love, but rather, in full recognition of all that is contrary to itself, it sets to work to remove every blemish,so that at length it can rest with satisfaction in its object.”
(Hamilton Smith)

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August 24

"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world.
If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in Him.”
(1 John 2:15)

During a lunar eclipse the earth lines up between the sun and moon,
thus covering the moon with earth’s dark shadow.
The moon is a type of the believer in Christ
who should reflect the glory 
of the Son of God.

When this sinful world comes between the believer and his Lord,
the glory of the Lord Jesus is not reflected 
from him as it should be.

Let us heed these words and not allow things of this world to 
shadow the glory of the Lord Jesus in our lives.
(Arnot McIntee)

Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in me,
All His wondrous compassion and purity,
By the Spirit divine, may Christ from my life shine.
’Til the beauty of Jesus, be seen in me.
  (Albert Osborn/Tom M. Jones)

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August 25

“I will lead on softly . . . as the children be able to endure.” (Genesis 33:14)


Lengthy Prayer

Pray often rather than very long.
It is difficult to remain long in prayer, and not slacken in our affections.
Especially observe this in social prayers; for when we pray in 
company, we must consider them that travel with us.
(Genesis 33:14)

(The Christian in Complete Armour)
William Gurnall 1617-1679

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August 26

“Set your affections on things above, not on things on the earth.”
(Colossians 3:2)

No experience in this life, however great or grievous,
is the standard of another.
We are prone to think that what we have experienced 
should be the experience of another.

It is true that we have many experiences in common (more that we realize);
but God deals uniquely with each individual, and 
our focus should not be on the experience,
but on Him Who orders all.
(Nuggets of Truth - J. Kaiser)

N.J. Hiebert - 6357

August 27

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

- Do I meet with some crosses? My comfort is, if they are heavy—I have not far to go!

- My cross is light—in comparison with the weight of glory.
- Has God taken away my comforts from me? It is well—the Comforter still abides with me.

- Thus contentment, as a honeycomb, drops sweetness into every condition.

- Discontent is a leaven which sours every comfort; it puts vinegar into every mercy; 
it doubles every cross.  But the contented spirit sucks sweetness from every flower of 
Providence. Contentment is full of consolation.

- Contentment is . . . 
a remedy against all our troubles, 
an alleviation to all our burdens, 
the cure of to every worry. 

- As medicine works disease out of the body—so contentment works trouble out of the heart.
Holy contentment keeps the heart from fainting.  Contentment is the golden shield, which
beats back all discouragements. 

A Christian finds contentment distilled out of the breasts of the promises.  He is poor in purse—but
rich in promise.  There is one promise which brings much sweet contentment into the soul:
They that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing.” (Psalm 34:10)

If the thing we desire is good for us—we shall have it.  If it is not good—then the not having
is good for us.  The resting satisfied with the promise, gives contentment.
(Thomas Watson - 1620 -1686)

N.J. Hiebert - 6358 

August 28

“Wilt thou not tell?”
Ezekiel 24:19

WE MAY NOT BE ABLE to do any great thing; but if each of us will do something,
however small it may be, a good deal will be accomplished for God.

For many years I have made it a rule not to let any day pass 
without speaking to someone about eternal things.
I commenced it away back years ago, 
and if I live the life allotted to man,
there will be more than eighteen 
thousand persons who will 
have been spoken to 
personally by me.

How often when we as Christians meet with people, 
we might turn the conversation into a channel
that will lead them up to Christ.
(D.L. Moody)

N.J. Hiebert - 6359

August 29

“The Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me.”
(Galatians 2:20)

Out of the realized “for me” grows the practical “for Thee.”
If the former is a living root, the later will be its living fruit. “For Thee!”
This makes the difference between forced or formal, and therefore unreasonable service,
and the reasonable service, which is the beginning of the perfect service where they see His face.
This makes the difference between slave work and free work.

For Thee, my Redeemer; for Thee who has spoken to my heart; 
for Thee, who has done for me—what?
Let us each pause, and fill up that blank with the great things the Lord hath done for us.
For Thee, who art to me—what?
Fill that up, too, before Him!
For Thee, my Saviour Jesus, my Lord and my God!

Help us lovingly to labour, looking for Thy present smile,
Looking for Thy promised blessing, thro’ the brightening “little while.”
Words for Thee in weakness spoken, Thou wilt here accept and own,
And confess them in Thy glory, when we see Thee on Thy throne.
(Opened Treasures - Francis Ridley Havergal)

N.J. Hiebert - 6360 

August 30

“Then I saw, and considered it well: I looked upon it, and received instruction.”
(Proverbs 24:32)

“Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.”
(Colossians 3:2)

The way up is taking the low place

"During the great Reformation in Europe, Luther and Zwingli found themselves at odds in their concern for the movements they were leading.
Early one morning, Zwingli walked out on the mountains 
of Switzerland and a soul-stirring sight confronted him.

He saw two goats making their way over a narrow path on the 
mountain. One was ascending the trail, the other descending.
He also noticed that they must pass at a point where the 
trail was so narrow that there was room for only one
goat.  He watched to see what would happen.

The animals rounded a turn in the path which brought then in full view of each other.
They backed up, as though ready for a lunge, and then the most amazing thing happened.
The goat on the trail below lay down in the path, while the goat above him walked over his back.
The first animal then arose and continued his journey up the trail.

To Zwingli this meant that the way down is the way up.  Christ humbled 
Himself so that men could walk over Him into the Kingdom of light,
knowing that afterward He would be exalted.”
(With thanks - D. Hopkins)

N.J. Hiebert - 6361

August 31

“To know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye 
might be filled with all the fulness of God.”
(Ephesians 3:19)

God, in giving me eternal life, has also given me a nature and capacity to enjoy Him for ever.
I am brought into an association with God, a relationship to God, 
and an enjoyment of God, which the angels know not, 
although holy in their nature, and exalted.
We are thus brought near 
that we might -
know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge, 
that ye may be filled to all the fulness of God.
(J.N. Darby)

N.J. Hiebert - 6362

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