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

Saturday, July 01, 2017

Gems from July 2017

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

A sacrifice acceptable, well pleasing to God” (Philippians 4:18). 

There are a number of sacrifices mentioned in the Scriptures besides those appointed through Moses: sacrifices which we can now offer: In Romans 12:1 our body is spoken of as a “living sacrifice,” and this sacrifice is also said to be ‘acceptable to God.’

In Hebrews 13:15 we are exhorted to offer “the sacrifice of praise to God continually,  that is the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His name.”

Then in the next verse we are told not to forget to offer the sacrifice of  “doing good and having fellowship, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased”. 

This is exactly the sacrifice the Philippians had offered, and it is described in almost the same words: “God is well pleased”  “Well pleasing to God”.

These three sacrifices are are ones that almost all can offer,
if they do not “forget.”

Even a Christian child can offer its body; and its praise, the fruit of its lips; and most children have as much money as the poor widow who offered the two mites, and found it more acceptable to God than all the great offerings of the rich.
(G. Christopher Willis)

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June 29

“O Lord God . . . I pray Thee, send me good speed this day.”
(Genesis 24:12)

"But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: 
for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth 
what things ye have need of, before ye ask Him."
(Matthew 6:7-8)

Our Lord told His disciples that there was no need for many words when they prayed.
A brief prayer goes straight to the heart of God.

Abraham’s servant teaches us a prayer we can pray at all times, 
however pressed for time we may be.

It covers everything.
O Lord God, send me good speed this day.”   
Give me success today, in my prayer life, in my 
work, in what I think and say and do, in what I am.

It is a telegram prayer. Let us use it at moments of sudden need.
We know it will be answered, for “our Father knows”
our needs long before we ask Him.
(Amy Carmichael)

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June 30

"If the iron be blunt, and he do not whet the edge, then must he 
put to more strength: but wisdom is profitable to direct.
The words of a wise man’s mouth are gracious.”
(Ecclesiastes 10:10, 12)

A word is such a potent thing; 
A careless word may break a heart;
A bitter word may burn and sting;
A word can rip a home apart — 
And yet a word can comfort bring;
So, Lord of words, please grant to me 
The speech that spreads tranquility.

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July 1

“Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.”
(Matthew 11:29)

All power and real effective service will be found to spring from entire submission.

Circumstances would not trouble if they did not find something in us contrary to God;
they would rustle by as the wind.

Until the will has been crushed in the presence of the majesty 
of God, there cannot be a right state before God.
(Pilgrim Portions for the Day of Rest - JND)

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July 2

“After that Jesus put His hands again upon his eyes,
and made him look up: and he was restored,
and saw every man clearly.”
(Mark 8:25)

Why wasn’t this blind man healed completely the first time Jesus laid his hands on him?
Perhaps it is to emphasize the progression of the Christian life.
Our knowledge of Him constantly progresses and grows.

Then there is the progression of following Him, learning
just how far His followers have to go: 

Whosoever will come after Me, let him deny himself,
take up His cross, and follow Me.”

So the illustration of the blind man’s progression represents each of us. 
Do we see any progression in our lives for Christ?
(Tom Steere)

We thank Thee for the smile and frown, and for the gain and loss;
We bless Thee for the future crown, and for the present cross.
(J. Crewdson)

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July 3

“The multitude of them that believed were 
of one heart and soul.”
(Acts 4:32)

The root of all discords in the church of God is the lack of the Spirit’s power;
where He works unhinderedly in any company of saints,
because ungrieved, there must be unity. . . .

The lack of enjoyed unity in any company is due to the absence 
of the power of the Holy Spirit.
(Edward Dennett)

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July 4

“For all the promises of God in Him are yea, and in Him Amen,
unto the glory of God by us.”
(2 Corinthians 1:20)

Prayer must be based upon promise, but,thank God, 
His promises are always broader 
`than our prayers.

No fear of building inverted pyramids here, 
for Jesus Christ is the foundation and this and all the other 
promises of God in Him are yea, and in Him amen, unto the glory of God by us.” 

So it shall be unto His glory to fulfill this one to us and to answer 
our prayer for a kept or established heart.

And its fulfillment shall work out His glory, 
not in spite of us, but by us.
(Frances Ridley Havergal)

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July 5

“Now unto  Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think.”
(Ephesians 3:20)

Now unto Him that is able to do above all we ask”; is that what is written? No; that is not enough.

Is it, “Able to do abundantly above all we ask?" That is not enough.

Is it, "Able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask?" Still that does not reach the limit.

Unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think.”  You need not fear to come to God about anything.

Are you troubled about present circumstances? Have you availed yourself of the abundant resources of God?

If things are right in your heart and you come to God and make connections there,  you can be sure of a wonderful answer.

"Unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us” — this divine energy which works through poor feeble creatures such as we are—  “unto Him be glory in the Church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. 

He is the One in whom God will find His pleasure throughout all eternity.
(H. A. Ironside)

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July 6

"For all the promises of God in Him are yea, and in Him Amen,
unto the glory of God by us.”
(2 Corinthians 1:20)

The destinies of man under God are alike in Him yea, and in Him amen.

There was dominion in Adam; Government in Noah; 
Fatherhood in Abraham; Judgment in David; and Royalty in Solomon.

In Christ all these glories will meet and shine together.  In Him, 
and under Him, will be ’the restitution of all things.’
Many crowns He will wear, and 
many names He will bear.
(The Son of God - J. G. Bellett)

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July 7

"Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God:
on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if
thou continue in His goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.” (Romans 11:22)

In any ordinary person, goodness and severity might be seen as conflicting, but in the character of the Lord Jesus they are compatible and consistent.

God’s severity with Israel opened up a means of blessing for Gentiles.
If that be so, the apostle argues, when the Jews are restored,
the blessing for Gentiles will be immeasurable!

We recall that our God is both righteous and good and whichever He manifests in our circumstances is for our ultimate blessing.
(Roy Hill)

Count your blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.
(Joshua Oatman)

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July 8

“Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise; That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long in the earth.
(Ephesians 6:1-3) 

“The principle of submission and obedience is the healing principle of humanity.”

Sin is disobedience and came into the world through disobedience.
Ever since, the essence of sin has been man doing his own will and refusing to be subject to God.

An insubject wife will make a miserable home; an insubject child will be an unhappy child; and a world not subject to God must be an unhappy and miserable world.

Not until the world is brought into subjection to God, under the reign of Christ, will its sorrow be healed.

Christianity teaches this subjection, and the Christian home should anticipate something of the blessedness of a subject world under the reign of Christ. 

The obedience of the child is, however, to be "in the Lord.” 
This supposes a home governed by the fear of the Lord, 
and therefore according to the Lord.

The quotation from the Old Testament (Exodus 20:12), which connects the promise of blessing with obedience to parents, shows how greatly God esteemed obedience under law.

Though in Christianity the blessing is of an heavenly order, yet in the governmental ways of God the principle remains true that honouring parents will bring blessing.
(Hamilton Smith)

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July 9

Testing and Teaching

“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)

Wouldst thou teach others?  There is need,
But ponder well the thought —
Thy 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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July 10

"O God, Thou hast taught me from my youth: and hitherto have I declared Thy wondrous works.  Now also when I am old and gray-headed, O God, forsake me not; until I have showed Thy strength unto this generation, and Thy power to every one that is to come.
(Psalms 71:17-18)

The Psalmist was so well educated by God in his youth that he continued to declare His wondrous works throughout his years.

Later when he realized that age was catching up with him and his strength fading, he determined still to show forth God’s power to everyone he came in contact with.

No matter what age we are, do we have such a determined goal in our life for God? 
(K. C. Ung)

Until the race is run, until the journey’s done,
Until the crown is won, teach me Thy way!
(B. M. Ramsey)

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July 11

“Jesus answered and said unto (Nicodemus), Verily, verily, I say unto thee,  Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto Him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?”
(John 3:3-4)

Surely not.  There would be no more gained by a second natural birth than by a first.

If a natural man could enter, ten thousand times, into his mother’s womb and be born again, he would be nought but a natural man after all; for “That which is born of the flesh is flesh.” 

Do what you will with flesh—with nature, and you cannot alter or improve it. Nothing could change flesh into spirit.

You may exalt it to the rank of a Pharisee, a ruler of the Jews, a master of Israel—and you can hardly make it higher—but it will be flesh, notwithstanding.

If this were more generally and clearly apprehended,  it would prove the saving of fruitless labour to hundreds. Flesh is of no value whatever.

In itself, it is but withered grass; and as to its most pious endeavours, its religious advantages and attainments, its works of righteousness, they have been pronounced by the pen of inspiration to be as filthy rags." (Isaiah 64:6)
(C. H. Mack1intosh)

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July 12

“Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth His will, him He heareth.”
(John 9:31)

Are you seeking happiness?  Is that your only goal?
We set our minds on something we think will make us happy—a husband, 
children, a particular job, or even a ministry—and refuse to open our eyes to God’s better way.

In fact, there are those who believe so strongly that only this one thing can bring 
happiness that they reject the Lord Jesus Himself.

Happiness is not found in marriage, or work, or ministry, or children, in themselves.
Happiness is found in being secure in Jesus, 
in obedience to Him, in doing His will.

Then we have fellowship with Him and we can speak to Him about everything that occupies our 
thoughts, and all these other things find their proper places in His plan for our lives.
(Corrie Ten Boom)

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July 13

"A man’s pride shall bring him low:
but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit.”
(Proverbs 29:23)

A man may be very zealous in prayer and painstaking in preaching, 
and all the while pride is the master whom he serves, though in God’s uniform.

It is hard starving this sin; there is nothing almost but it can live on;
nothing so base that a proud heart will not be lifted up with,
and nothing so sacred but it will profane. . . .

So far as pride prevails the man prays and preaches rather to be thought good by others,
rather to enthrone himself than Christ, in the opinion and hearts of his hearers.

Remember, Christian, when thou hast they best suit on, who made 
it, who paid for it: thy grace, thy comfort, is neither the work of my own 
hands, nor the price of thy own desert; be not for shame proud of another’s coat.
(The Christian in Complete Armour - William Gurnall 1617- 1679)

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July 14

“Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, 
and I will give you rest.”
(Matthew 11:28) 

Some years ago someone asked me which I thought was the most 
precious promise of all those that Christ left.

I took some time to look over the promises, but I gave it up.

I found that I could not answer the question.

Like a man with a large family of children, he cannot tell which he likes best, he loves them all.
But if not the best, this is one of the sweetest promises of all:

Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Take My yoke upon you, and learn of me, for I am meek and 
lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 
For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.
(D.L. Moody)

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July 15

“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”
(Philippians 4:13) 

It is very blessed to see littleness like that of an infant in saints like John and Paul,
to see them them upheld by Christ every step of the way.

To see Christ taking occasion of our littleness to show the exquisite 
graciousness that is connected with His Divine glory.

We think of His glory, and not of His grace in that glory;
everything characterizing the Lord is grace.

All hangs on Himself, whether to sustain faith or to lead forth praise.
(G. V. Wigram)

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July 16

“The Lord is . . . not willing that any should perish, 
but that all should come to repentance."
(2 Peter 3:9)

”That 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.”
(Romans 10:9)

Then why do any perish?
Simply because they won’t come; 
because they will not yield to the winning 
love and the drawing power which is now being 
put forth to save you, if, as you read this you want to be saved.

There is no sadder word in the Bible than
“Ye will not come to Me, that ye might have life.”

But if you are saying, ever so feebly and faintly,"I will,” 
God meets it with His strong and gracious “Thou shalt.” 

What will you do without Him, when He hath shut the door,
And you are left outside, because you would not come before?
When it is no use knocking, no use to stand and wait,
For the word of doom tolls thro’ your heart, that terrible 
Too late!” 
(Francis Ridley Havergal)

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July 17

“Whatsoever ye do, DO IT heartily. as to the Lord, and not unto men.” (Colossians 3:23)

“Well DONE, good and faithful servant . . .”
(Matthew 25:23)

“For the Son of Man is COME to seek and to save . . .”
(Luke 19:10)

Two Ways

One is God’s way, the other is man’s, 
One is by faith, the other is by fancy, 

One is of grace, the other is of merit, 
One is of faith, the other is of works, 

One is Christ, the other is "Religion."
The one rests on what God has said, the other rests on what man thinks.

The one rests on what Christ has done, the other rests on what man can do.
As to what man is to “do” there is no end to the variety.

These two words sum up and embody the two ways: “DONE” and “DO.”
(E.W. Bullinger (1837-1913

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July 18

“And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience
void of offence toward God, and toward men.”
(Acts 24:16)

"A bad habit is first a caller, and then a guest, and at last a master.”

"Trifles unnoticed by us may be links in the chain of sin.” 

There are no little sins.

“Sir,” said Samuel Johnson, “the chains of habit are generally too small to be felt
until they are too strong to be broken. 
Habits are at first cobwebs—at last cables.” 

Someone asked to define conscience, 
said, “It is a little three-cornered thing in here.  
When I do wrong it turns around and hurts very much.
If I keep on doing wrong, it will turn until it wears the edges all off,
and then it will not hurt any more.”
(Mountain Trailways for Youth)

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July 19

“ . . . we should serve in newness of spirit . . .”
(Romans 7:6)

Go to the man who is carving a stone for a building;
ask him where is that stone going, to what part of the building,
and how is he going to get it into place, and what does he do?

He points you to the builder’s plans.
This is only one stone of many.

So, when men shall ask where and how is your 
little achievement going into God’s plan, point them to your Master,
who keeps the plans, and then go on doing your little service as faithfully 
as if the whole building were yours to build. 
(Phillips Brooks)

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July 20

“By this shall all men know that that ye are my disciples,
if ye have love one to another.”
(John 13:35)

The moment a Christian recognizes divine life in another,
in spite of difference of education, rank, and many 
other things, he will be drawn towards him.

It is characteristic; he cannot help it.
The moment a man discerns the Spirit of 
Christ in another, there is a necessary attraction to him.

At once they are united together in love.
(J. N. Darby

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July 21

“And God made a wind to pass over the earth, and the waters assuaged; The fountains also of the deep and the windows of heaven were stopped, and the rain from heaven was restrained; and  the waters returned from off the earth continually.”
(Genesis 8:1-3)

All this because God remembered Noah! The
forces of heaven and earth were enlisted, reversed, ordered
about, solely because God remembered Noah and had plans for him.

God has not forgotten you.
He will as readily order about the forces of 
the universe on your account as He did on Noah’s.

His plans for Noah were also plans for 
the whole world through Noah.
So they are for you.

He will use you for the good of the whole 
world if you will let Him.

We may forget; God does not!

God’s time is never wrong, never too fast nor too slow;
The planets move to its steady pace as the centuries come and go.

Stars rise and set by that time, the punctual comets come back
With never a second’s variance, from the round of their viewless track.

Men space their years by the sun, and reckon their months by the moon,
Which never arrive too late and never depart too soon.

Let us set our clocks by God’s, and order our lives by His ways,
And nothing can come and nothing can go too soon or too late in our day.
(Annie Johnson Flint)

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July 22


“Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.”
(John 7:24)

At the beginning of the last war a young man sat at a table in a London restaurant.
Two young enthusiasts seated at another table, watched him for a few 
minutes, whispering together; and then, approaching him, 
offered him a little box. 

He opened it, and in it lay—a white feather.
“How strange”, he remarked, “that I should receive two such gifts 
in one day: this morning I received the Victoria Cross at Buckingham Palace”. 

The simple incident illustrates a profound truth.
For we are called upon, if we judge at all, to judge righteously—
John 7:24; and that implies that we have accurate knowledge of the circumstances 
of the one whom we dare to judge.

To criticize without such knowledge may cause pain and sorrow to innocent hearts.
(In Green Pastures - George Henderson)

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July 23

“That 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.”
(Romans 10:9)

Only a step to Jesus! then why not take it now?
Come, and thy sin confessing, to Him, thy Saviour, bow.

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us
our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
(1 John 1:9)

Only a step, only a step, come, He waits for thee;
Come, and thy sin confessing, thou shalt receive a blessing;
Do not reject the mercy He freely offers thee.
(Treasures from Fanny Crosby)

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July 24

“And all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation.”
(2 Corinthians 5:18)

There is nothing in the new creation that is not of God—nor
can anything else ever enter into it.
All things are of God.” 

Our “life,” which "is hid with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3), 
is a tested life, not a life exposed to be tested—and
God has been glorified in that life.

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

God’s purposes are not in Adam, but are all in Christ.
(Hunt’s Sayings)

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July 25


“Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do,
do all to the glory of God.”
(1 Corinthians 10:31)

It was said of Frances R. Havergal, author of this text, that the beauty of a consecrated life 
was never more perfectly revealed than in her daily living.

"These little couplets that chimed in my heart one after another” were for Frances Havergal the result of an 
evening in 1874 passed in pursuing a deeper consecration of herself to God.  

Take my voice and let me sing always only for my King” 
was personally significant for Frances.
She was naturally very musical and had been trained as a 
concert soloist with an unusually pleasant voice.
Her musical talents could have brought her much worldly fame.  
However, she determined that her life’s mission 
was to sing and work only for Jesus.     

Take my life and let it be consecrated, Lord, to Thee;
take my hands and let them move at the impulse of Thy love,

Take my feet and let them be swift and beautiful for Thee;
take my voice and let me sing always, only, for my King.

Take my lips and let them be filled with messages for Thee;
take my silver and my gold—not a mite would I withhold,

Take my love—my God, I pour at Thy feet its treasure store;
take myself—and I will be ever, only, all for Thee. 
(From Amazing Grace - Kenneth W. Osbeck)

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July 26

“Whom have I in heaven but Thee?
And there is none upon earth that I desire but Thee.”
(Psalm 73:25)

Thoughts of heaven make us think of being with our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
He will be the centre of our focus for all eternity.

But why should that attitude and adoration be put off to a coming day?
As we live here and now, is the Lord Jesus truly all that we desire?
Or are we caught up with earthly desires and pleasures?

May He be our all in all now, as He will be then.
(L. Tempest)

And when I think, that God, His Son not sparing; 
Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;
That on the Cross, my burden gladly bearing,
He bled and died to take away my sin.
(Carl Boberg)

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July 27

“And the Lord spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, and gave 
them a charge unto the children of Israel.”
(Exodus 6:13)

Time and again God had told Moses of the mission He expected him 
to accomplish, but repeatedly Moses presented excuses, 
in particular, focusing on his
own inadequacies. 

In the end God commanded him to just “go”!

In life the Lord gives us frequent confirmations that He is with us in our future plans, but we excuse ourselves because of our own limitations.

Stop looking within and “go”— know of a surety He 
is with you and will always support you.
(Brian Russell)

Arise ye warriors of the cross, the Master’s word obeying;
Gird on the sword, count all things loss, go forth without delaying.
(S. Trevor Francis)

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July 28

Oil And Wine

“Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there?”
(Jeremiah 8:22)

There is a balm for every pain, a medicine for all sorrow;
The eye turned backward to the Cross and forward to the morrow—

The morrow of the glory and the psalm, when He shall come;
The morrow of the harping and the palm, the welcome home.

Meantime in His beloved hands our ways, and on His heart the wandering heart’s at rest;  And comfort for the weary one who lays his head upon His breast. 
(A. J. Pollock)

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July 29

“Looking unto Jesus the author and the finisher of our faith;
who for the the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, 
despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
(Hebrews 12:2)

Calvary is never the end of the road for the blind man (Mark 8:23) whom the Lord leads by the hand out of the town, and to whom He gives vision.

Who for the joy  that was set before Him endured the Cross
is a great word for fainting souls.

As I read the New testament over and over,  I am more and more impressed by the way suffering was taken for granted as something appointed; but always there is the thought of joy not far off.

In our Lord’s private talks with his disciples, there is continually and clearly that “Must” of suffering, and the joy to follow.

We often act as if the place that is called Calvary had been taken out of 
the landscape of life, or were an accident there.

It is not so; but just out of sight is the joy that is set before us, and there is the power which can enable us to treat the invisible as visible, the promised as present.
(Edges of His Ways - Amy Carmichael)

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July 30

“Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy Word is truth.”
(John 17:17)

While we may decry legalism, we tend to prefer it to open idolatry because it appears more respectable.  But, in actuality, there is not much difference between the two.

Idolatry is essentially having an object other that Christ and God’s glory.
Legalism is having a standard other than Christ and God’s glory.

Ultimately, that standard becomes an idol, and legalism adds the reek of hypocrisy.

Legalism is little more than a sanctimonious form of idolatry.
(Nuggets— Food for Thought - John Kaiser)

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July 31


"Call upon Me in the day of trouble:
I will deliver thee and thou shalt glorify Me.”
(Psalm 50:15)

It has been said that man is born to trouble as the sparks fly upward. (Job 5:7)
So that we may be quite sure a text such as this 
appeals to a great many.

It presents to us four points, each of which is worthy of consideration.

They are—first, “The day of trouble.”
Secondly, what we are to do in it: “Call upon Me.”
Next, what God will do in answer to our call: “I will deliver thee.”
Lastly, the end God has in view: “Thou shalt glorify Me.”
(Angels in White - Russell Elliott)

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“He that hath My commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth Me: and he that loveth Me shall be loved of My Father, and I will love him, and will manifest Myself to him.”
(John 14:21)

Neither you nor I were ever caught by Satan and tripped up, we never made a mistake in our history, that it was not the direct results of neglect of some part of the Word of God.

The Lord answered and defeated Satan in the wilderness as the result of having lived by the Word of God. When we have been beaten by Satan, it was because we had not obeyed the Word of the Lord, to go by.

I believe there is in the Word, divine guidance for your soul and mine, for every step of our history from first to last. 

There are principles to be found in it that would guide us at all times, if we were only subject to it.
(W. T. P. Wolston)

N.J. Hiebert - 6796


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