Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Seeing the Invisible God

“...what likeness will ye compare unto him?” The teacher asked the little boy, “What are you drawing?” To which the little fellow answered, “A picture of God.” “But no one knows what God looks like,” said the teacher. Smiling, the young artist replied, “They will when I get through!”

I’m afraid many of us, also, are guilty of this attempt. We conjure up in our minds a mental picture of God. To paint His image on the canvass of our minds is just as wrong as drawing it on paper or chiseling it in stone. To do so is to break the second commandment.

It is impossible to please God until you, by faith, simply believe “that he is.” God is eternally invisible. Yet, we, like Moses, can see the Invisible, by faith. You can see God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Jesus is the only Son Who is the true “spittin’ image” of His Father!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Affliction’s Advantage

“Before I was afflicted, I went astray: but now have I kept thy word…It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes…I know, O Lord…that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me.” David, in retrospect, could say affliction was good for him. And each of us, in hindsight, should be able to see affliction was to our advantage. Sometimes, we do not know what is good for us, but God always does. Affliction is one of those “all things” that works together for our good. Is it any wonder then that Paul rejoiced in them?

Plenty does not always mean richer; sometimes it leaves us poorer. In prosperity, Israel was prone to forget God. But, in affliction, she could say, “Yet have we not forgotten thee.” More times than one, sickness teaches us more than a sermon. Whatever the form or design, affliction benefits us. The Psalmist tells us the result is that we will keep God’s Word, as well as learn it. And, as an old saint said, “Who cares if the file is rough, if there’s less rust?”

Whoever brings affliction, it is God that sends it. (Thomas Watson, Puritan)

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Carried By My Father

In Isaiah chapter forty-six, God says of His elect that they were, “...borne by me from the belly, which are carried from the womb: And even to your old age, I am he; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry, and will deliver you.” What a promise! He will not only carry us in our infancy, but down to old age. As someone has rightly said, “From the womb to the tomb.”

Now we can understand David’s words in the twenty-second Psalm: “I was cast upon thee from the womb: thou art my God from my mother’s belly.” This was not only prophetically true of our Lord Jesus, but we read it was so with such men as David, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Paul, etc.

What a wonderful, secure place to be—wrapped in the Everlasting Arms, with our heads resting against the loving heart of our Heavenly Father.

O, the joy I found in carrying my own children in their infancy! And there was just as much pleasure in carrying my little frail mother of ninety-four in her closing days. If this be so with man, how much more with God?

Just to think of it—we’re safe in the arms of God!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

At the Bottom of the List

The last sin to be acknowledged or confessed in our lives is that of prayerlessness; even if we admit to it then. Samuel says to the Lord’s people, “God forbid that I should sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you.” If it’s a sin not to pray for others, how much more is it not to pray at all? And notice, to not pray is a “sin against the Lord."

If we were honest with ourselves we would say with Job, “If I had called, and he had answered me; yet would I not believe that he had harkened unto my voice.” It is during those long intervals when God has us wait that we loose our faith. And when this happens, we also lose face. Like the old suffering patriarch, we impulsively say, “…what profit should we have, if we pray unto him?”

Jesus said, “…men ought always to pray, and not to faint.” If you have fainted during a long night of silence form God, try praying. Its a good smelling salts.

"Set no time to the Lord the creator of time, for His time is always best." (Samuel Rutherford)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

In Lucifer’s Likeness

C.S. Lewis points out, “No one is proud because he is rich or clever, or good looking. He is proud because he is richer, or more clever, or better looking than someone else. It involves a comparison which always goes in the favor of the one who makes it.” How we love to exalt ourselves at another’s expense. This caused Lucifer’s downfall.

God hates pride, and we harbor it. How can we condone what God condemns? William Law wrote: “Pride must die in you or nothing of Heaven can live in you…Look not at pride only as an unbecoming temper, nor at humility only as a decent virtue…one is all hell and the other all Heaven.”

If a person is not embarrassed when you speak to them of their humility, they are proud.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Taking up the Apologist Cloak

Please allow me to attire myself in the garb of an “apologist” for just a little while. I use the word as the dictionary defines it: “A person who argues in defense or justification of something, such as a doctrine, policy, or institution.” I’d like to use the latter of these three meanings and plead the case for Fundamentalist Churches.

These Bible assemblies have gotten a bad rap from the world. And what makes it worse, many of the respect seeking Evangelical churches and those associated with the Reformed movement, to name just two, have piled on. To be sure, the Fundamentalist are known for often “doing the right thing, in the wrong way.” But in the end, they are doing right! It is much better than doing “the wrong thing in the right way,” like so many of their pious critics are known for.

This belittled band of Believer’s give more to missions; have more young men surrender to go into the ministry; preach on clean living; win more souls; preach on hell, sin, death and judgment; start more churches; oppose apostasy; keep Christ’s coming constantly before their people; pass out tracts; preach on street corners; are unashamed to shout, raise their hands, and, yes, dance for Jesus; and last, but not least, they are the workingest people you’ll ever meet!

So remember the next time you hear one of these uninformed, dry branches criticize one of these stalwart saints, who are getting the job done, you’re listening to a person with no more substance than cotton candy. Hot Air!

It’s one thing to say, “We need more John the Baptists; it’s quite another to be one!”

Sad Saints

I agree with C.S. Lewis who says there are only two times a Christian is justified in being sad: when it has to do with his or her own sins, or when seeing other peoples’ sufferings. The Corinthians, I believe, would fit under the heading of the first and Nehemiah the second.

I wonder if Joseph’s question to the butler and baker couldn’t be applied to many of us, “Wherefore look ye so sadly today?” Or better yet, Jesus query to the two disciples on the Emmaus road, as they walked with the risen Saviour and were sad.

I find when I’m in such a sad condition, like Hannah of old; it is a good thing to have a talk with my High Priest. After her chat with hers we are told, “[She]…was no more sad.” And neither will we be!

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Saturday, August 21, 2010

The High and Mighty

“...the Lord thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth” (Deut.7:6). Special—not meaning better than, but, rather, different from. Unique from others of its own kind. Chosen to be a pattern, not a pet (1Tim.1:16). Christians sometimes flaunt themselves before the unregenerate of the world, giving the impression of superiority, forgetting they are what they are by the grace of God (1Cor.15:10).

We need to constantly remind ourselves when observing the non-Christian community around us, “But for the grace of God, there go I.” We are warned to “...be not high minded but fear.” “The Lord did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were...” better, holier, more intelligent, stronger, or greater than others. “But because the Lord loved you...” He loved us simply because He loved us (Deut.7:7-8).

May God help some of us to come down from our high and mighty perch, and “...walk humbly with [our] God” (Micah 7:8); and to “...condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits...” (Rom.12:16).

He who thinks he’s better than all sinners is the greatest sinner of all.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Esther’s Secret

When Esther’s time came to appear before the king we are told that, “…she required nothing.” The other women who came before him loaded themselves with precious ornaments of various kinds; such as necklaces, bracelets, earrings, anklets, and the like. But there was nothing artificial about this woman. What you saw was what you got. She was not out to impress the king with who she was not, but was willing for him to see her as she really was.

Such godly Christian women today come into their King’s presence singing, “Just as I am without one plea, but that thy blood was shed for me.” There is no attempt, like Jacob of old; to pass themselves off as someone they’re not. Nor do they try to merit anything before their Royal Sovereign. Their testimony to Him is simply, “Nothing in my hands I bring, simply to thy cross I cling.” In other words, they never take extras when appearing before the King of Kings.

It is interesting to note that, “The king loved Esther above all the women, and she obtained grace and favour in his sight…” It goes on to say. “He set the royal crown upon her head.” If Jacob was a prince with God, then Esther’s clan is princesses. The woman who sat next to the king, and was closest to him, was the one who dared to be herself before him.

"The king's daughter is all glorious within." (Psl.45:13, a)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

All That Glitters Isn’t Gold

The old-time Nazarene preacher, Uncle Buddy Robinson, after touring the sights of New York said, “I’ve seen it all, and there ain’t nothin’ I want.” This is how I feel about the brand of Christianity on display today. Both in the pulpit and pew there is giddiness whenever a politician, athlete, or actor professes to be a Christian. Once it was the walk, not the talk that characterized a person as belonging to Him. Nowadays it seems to have reversed.

These wide-gate professors are great ones for name dropping, their favorite word being “Lord.” But Jesus said, “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” Lordship, then, has to do with doing! We are explicitly told to keep His commandments. Not in order to be saved, but because of the fact we are saved. These “cosmetic Christians” believe their God commands nothing of them, thus He expects nothing from them. Sure is convenient, huh? No commands, no demands.

A grace that does not deny ungodliness, and worldly lusts, is a disgrace! Jude tells us, it is this sort that has turned the grace of God into lasciviousness. It seems to be the in thing today among the younger set of Christians to accept lying, fornication, thievery, and all the other sins of this filthy flesh as the norm. They believe its vogue, but God still says it is vile. Their one authority for this dogmatic ignorance is an embarrassing, yet emphatic, “I think.”

Years ago, the old Baptist preacher Vance Havner said, “The time is coming when the man picking your pocket, when caught by you will say, “It’s okay, I’m a Christian, too.” I believe that time is upon us!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A Ruined Reputation

“But made of himself no reputation.” I heard an old preacher years ago say, “Most of us spend a lifetime trying to get a reputation; while our Lord tried to get rid of one.” A reputation can be a good or a bad thing. If it keeps one from change, it falls under the latter of these.

Your reputation is to never come before God’s revelation. As we grow in the Lord, only pride will keep us from changing our past views, and rejecting a present, fuller, enlightenment. It seems we’d rather seem consistent before the brethren than Biblically correct before God.

A marvelously used missionary once told me, “The first pre-requisite of being used of God, is a ruined reputation.” Dr. Bob Jones Sr. used to say, “Reputation is what people think you to be, character is who God knows you to be.”

Light rejected brings greater darkness.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Yes! You Can Change

“All…were amazed, and said; Is not this he that destroyed…” What do you mean, you can’t change? Was there ever a man such as Saul, who was filled with more hatred and destruction of all that was good in life? This human serpent, who breathed out cruelty toward everything that was truly decent, would be considered, then and now, unchangeable by the masses.

Yet in just one day, yea, in a split second, he was forever changed for the good. This complete 180-degree turn-around was a direct result of the beginning of a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. There was a complete change in his attitude and actions; a new principle had entered his life. People and things didn’t change, but his outlook on them did. Drastically, I might add.

When Lordship is settled, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do”; you too, my friend, will experience the metamorphous life! Hurting will be turned into helping, loathing into loving; and all the bitter waters of life, become sweet. You need not be knocked off your high-horse and humbled in the dust as Paul. God doesn’t use a ballistic missile on fleas; a pea-shooter does for the likes of us.

Whoever you are, wherever you’re at, will you now, at this second, acknowledge and submit to his Sovereign right in your life? If so, arise and go in peace, and know a life that passes anything and everything you could ever imagine!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Missing What Life is All About

In one of his many books, a well known Dispensational Bible teacher says that the theme of the Bible is the Kingdom. How sad that so-called scholarship should be so shallow. The central theme of the Bible is Jesus Christ. Theologians refer to it as, “Christocentric.” Eliminate Christ from the two Testaments and the Bible disintegrates into fragments. If He is subtracted you are left with unexplained ceremonies, unachieved purposes, unappeased longings, and unfulfilled prophecies.

In a well meaning attempt today, I’m sure, many, in trying to bring about a moral change are majoring on the political, psychological, and philosophical aspects of life. But all such attempts apart from Christ are immoral. “What therefore God hath joined together, let no man put asunder.”

We are told, “…that in all things he might have the pre-eminence.” Anything or anyone who is put in His place throws our lives completely off kilter. Nothing in this life is of any value unless directly related to Him. He is to be the center-piece on the mantle of our hearts, all else is to be moved to the sides.

“The crown of all the saints’ victories must be set upon the head of Christ.” (Thomas Watson)

Sunday, August 15, 2010

God Wondered

“And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor.” God’s people had deteriorated to the level of the nations around them. They had corrupted their manners by lying, worshipping idols, indulging in sexual sins, sacrificing their children, and mocking that little weak remnant who were trying to live Godly. Seems contemporary, doesn’t it?

In the midst of all this, God searched for one person to intercede for His people, but found none. No man would do anything for the support of the bleeding cause of God’s elect. No doubt there were those who complained of the evil of the times, but they did not have the faith or courage to do anything about it.

God was looking for someone to stand in the gap as a prayer warrior in opposition to the wickedness of the day, but His search was futile (Ezek.22:30). “He wondered that there was no intercessor.” He could not find an Abraham, Moses, Elijah, Samuel, Esther, Daniel, Paul, or Epaphras.

John tells us, “As he is, so are we in the world.” Jesus' main ministry since returning to Heaven has been that of an intercessor!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Coming and Going

“The [devil] came to him…Then the devil leaveth him.” The devil, as in the life of our Lord, comes and goes in ours also. But he never comes to stay. After he ended his time of tempting we are told, “… he departed.” We also see this from examples such as Job in the Old Testament, and Peter in the New.

And what resulted in the above mentioned men’s lives, once the enemy of their souls left them? “Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit”; of Job we are told, “So the Lord blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning”; and what of Peter? We see him preaching his great Pentecostal sermon, with God’s blessings poured out in abundance.

O, dear child of God, let me encourage you to resist this “Evil One” just a little bit longer. I assure you, you will find, as Jesus did, that when all was ended, “Angels came and ministered unto him. C.S. Lewis reminds us, “In scripture the visitation of an angel…begins by saying, “Fear not.”

Friday, August 13, 2010

Temporal or Perpetual

“And he felt him, and said the voice is Jacob’s voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau.” Because Isaac went by feeling, rather than the spoken word, he was deceived. Feelings are always inferior to faith. They cannot be a part of a Christian’s regular diet. We must never gauge our spiritual life by this type of thermometer.

Feelings are like a roller-coaster; they have their extreme highs and their lowest lows. But faith is a straight, steady road. It may not have the excitement of the former, but it will get you to where you’re going quicker. Crisis feelings of any sort are essentially transitory. Feelings come and go. They never stay for long, “but the word of God abideth forever.” We may choose between the two—the temporal or the perpetual.

The woman with the issue of blood felt she was healed on the spot, but Jesus’ word gave her lasting assurance for the future.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Leaving a Legacy

“I have been young, and now am old...” This is the Psalm of the old man. It is manna to the soul of the one who reads it and heeds it. David has passed through life. He has had the opportunity to observe and experience. The years of excitement and fears of youth have long passed, along with the challenges and temptations of midlife. “I am now old.” I’m standing on shore and realize that in the near future I will be leaving behind loved ones, friends, and a new generation.

There is something sad when a man must say, “I have been young.” The mature strength of manhood is no more. All the wishful hopes and plans of that young life are gone forever, along with its fanciful fantasies. Yet there is a rewarding compensation in the latter years. The old man has been where the youths are; but they have never been where David is now. He has a wealth of wisdom to bequeath to them if they will only lend an ear and absorb what the old man has to say.

The greatest legacy a man can leave is one that helps the next generation on to God.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Variety: the Spice of Life

“For who maketh thee to differ from another?” God is for individualism; most all will agree to this. Yet, when we come to the feminine gender, we have a double standard. A man can be a rugged individualist, but a woman is to fit into the “cookie-cutter” category. In some Christian circles, women (and little girls) are expected to look, act, and think alike. This is proven by the statement, “Why can’t you be more like her?” Yet everyone knows a variety of flowers is more beautiful than just one kind alone. If the latter were true, you’d soon tire and lose your enjoyment of life.

This rigid regimentation of Christian women comes from emphasizing the importance of externals in her life over her inward qualities. For example, we tell our daughters and wives they are to be meek and quiet, referring to the outward. But the Bible says this has to do with her inward spirit (1Pet.3:4). It’s the “hidden man of the heart” that God is mainly interested in. Jesus was meek and lowly, but, “in heart” (Matt.11:29). Meekness is not a physical, but a spiritual trait (1Cor.4:21b). God promises to bless, not the poor, but the poor “in spirit” (Matt.5:3).

Fella’s, let’s give the girls elbow room to be themselves. After all, that’s what we want.

If the woman is weak, protect her; if equal, share with her; if superior, learn from her.

*Missing From the Menu

“...there came a lion...and took a lamb out of the flock...And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth.” David was guarding his father’s flock, and he had no intention of losing even one lamb to that lion. His father had given him those sheep, and they were in his care. He was responsible to keep each of them.

And so it was (and is) with the greater Son of David. In His High Priestly prayer to His Father, Jesus says concerning the sheep God had given him, “I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost.”

Therefore, because of this, our testimony can be that of the Apostle Paul: “I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
The devil will never know what lamb chops taste like!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

It’s Not the Way We Thought

In this play-acting age of Christianity, closeness to God is not what we see portrayed on the stages in most of the local Christian “theaters” attended each Sunday morning.
John Newton, the writer of Amazing Grace, who referred to himself before his conversion as “the old blaspheming African slave-trader,” had it right when he wrote the following:

I asked the Lord that I might grow
In faith and love and every grace,
Might more of his salvation know
And seek more earnestly His face.

‘Twas He Who taught me thus to pray,
And He, I trust, has answered prayer;
But it has been in such a way
As almost drove me to despair.

I thought in some favored hour
At once He’d answer my request
And by His love’s constraining power
Subdue my sins and give me rest.

Instead of that, He made me feel
The hidden evils of my heart,
And bade the angry powers of Hell
Assault my soul in every part.

Nay, more, with His own hand he seemed
Intent to aggravate my woe.
Crossed all the fair designs I schemed,
Blasted my gourds, and laid me low.
“Lord, why is this?” I trembling cried.
“Wilt thou pursue this worm to death?”
“This is the way,” the Lord replied,
“I answer prayer for grace and faith.”

“These inward trials I employ
From self and sin to set thee free
And cross they schemes of earthly joy,
That thou might’st find thy all in Me.”

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Bible Boasters

I held a meeting for a pastor once who boasted of the fact he had read the Bible through over seventy-five times; he later ran off with a woman in his church. I’m acquainted with a dear man, of a different sort from the above mentioned, a godly man, who has read the Book over one hundred times; he believes bell-bottom pants, wire-rimmed glasses, and cowboy boots are wrong to wear. Then there is another Bible consumer that I know of who has gone through the Holy Writ close to two hundred times; he has been married five times.

What am I saying? Simply that reading vast amounts of scripture does not necessarily make one morally clean, doctrinally sound, or able to subdue the flesh. Satan knows and quotes the Bible, and yet is not helped, but remains a devil. It is not how many times we have gone through the Bible, but how many times it has gone through us. Putting a notch on your Bible each time you read it does not make an individual a better Christian, but I do strongly suspect it will make one more accountable to God.

The question is not so much how many times we have read God’s Word, but rather, how many times has it read us? Certainly we are to know the “Letter,” but not in the absence of the “Spirit.” There is nothing magical in Bible reading, but something does happen when we obey it. Charles Spurgeon said it best when he wrote, “Some people like to read so many (Bible) chapters every day. I would not dissuade them from the practice, but I would rather lay my soul asoak in half a dozen verses all day than rinse my hand in several chapters. Oh, to be bathed in a text of scripture, and to let it be sucked up in your very soul, till it saturates your heart!”

Friday, August 6, 2010

Why?

Someone has said, “It is alright to ask God a question, but not to question Him.” I read somewhere that there are over four hundred questions in the book of Job. “Why” is one of the biggest, littlest words in the English language. From early age down to grey hairs it is one of the most frequently used expressions in one’s vocabulary. Whether a person possesses a large or limited vocabulary, all are familiar with this small three letter word, from the intellectual to the illiterate.

A baffled David asks God, “Why?” Hurting Jeremiah asked Him, “Why?" And even the Son of Man, while hanging on the cross, cries out to His Father, asking, “Why.” Just because an answer is long in coming doesn’t mean your question will not be answered. It is always good to remember Jesus’ words to Peter when we become impatient in waiting for an answer, “What I do thou knowest not now. but thou shalt know hereafter.” Or as the song, “We’ll Talk it Over” says, “I’ll ask the reason, He’ll tell me why, when we talk it over in the by and by.”

C.S. Lewis writes, “Heaven will solve our problems, but not, I think, by showing us subtle reconciliations between all our apparently contradictory notions. The notions will be knocked from under our feet. We shall see that there never was any problem.”

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Tortoise Christians

“Then Ahimaaz ran by the way of the plain, and outran Cushi” (Read 2 Sam. 18:19-33). Being “…first in his own cause,” does not qualify one before the Judge of all the earth. The king may say to such, “Turn aside and stand here”; while the Sovereign recognizes the one that the overachiever considered to be second best. Our Lord said, “[Many] that are first shall be last.” The same Authority went on to say it is possible that “…the last shall be first.”

John and Peter ran to the tomb with the former arriving first, and “…looking in.” But, though Peter was “runner-up,” he “…went in.” It may seem others are pulling out ahead of you and getting somewhere, only to find when they stand before the King, they got nowhere. Jacob got further with God limping than he ever did running. It’s “the lame,” that take the prey. And then shall come to pass, “The lame shall leap as an hart.”

The hare can outrun the tortoise all the time, but the tortoise can outlast the hare every time.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

It's No Big Deal

Deism teaches that God exists and created the world, but has no part in the functioning of it thereafter. I am not a deist. I hold to the belief that God is interested and active in world conditions and the daily affairs of men. But I think some saints have gone to seed with this truth.

Someone said, “You can get so sweet you’re sticky,” and I’d like to add, it is possible to act so spiritual it’s sickening. There’s people who think there is a spiritual significance in every little thing that happens in their lives. I doubt seriously there is any divine design attached to many of the things we do, and that happen to us.

For example, when Isaac was up in years, his eyes got dim (possibly cataracts). This was not because God was chastening him, or he was not taking care of his eyes, nor was it a test to teach him some deep spiritual truth; it was simply part of getting old.

A.W. Tozer likens our journey to Heaven as being on a cruise ship. There are certain restrictions and daily commonsense functions, but much of the activity and movements are up to one’s own discretion. For example, what you’ll wear, what time you get up, what kind of food you eat that day, etc.

Let’s stop trying to analyze every little thing that happens in our lives. Don’t read more into situations than is actually there. And remember, all those little non-consequential happenings, they’re not that big a deal.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Bible Biographies

At the conclusion of most biographies I have read, I find myself saying, “This is too high for me: I cannot attain unto it.” Rather than going away encouraged, on many occasions it has produced the opposite effect. Why is this? Well, I have noticed most peoples’ enemies do not write about them. It is their admirers, friends, and loved ones, who write their biographies. If an adversary does write, you realize at once there is bias to be found in the book. But this is just as true if the former writes about them. The one emphasizes the bad; the other, the good, in the individual’s life. And both are generally blown out of proportion.
But this is not true in Bible biographies. Here we see the Author is the first to bring out anything commendable, even in the lives of those He has no respect for. On the other hand, He does not put cosmetics over the blemishes of the ones He dearly loves. There is no “sugar-coating,” even for the elect’s sake. This is one proof of inspiration. Bad men wouldn’t have written such things about themselves. Good men couldn’t have written it, for embarrassment. It’s God’s writings.
How I thank God for recording for me the lives of these saints, and not hiding their sins, faults, and short-comings. And how appreciative each of us should be of these people whose lives are laid bare, so that the entire world can read about them. How would I like for my life to be displayed in its rawest form? I have been so blessed and helped by reading the paradoxical stories of the lives of these sinning and shining saints. Only God could work these evils for their good and His glory. “Now all these things happened unto them for our ensamples: and they are written for our admonition...” (1 Cor. 10:11)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Can you Keep a Secret?

“He charged them that they should tell no man…” I have found Spiritual secrets are the hardest to keep quiet about, especially personal victories behind closed doors with that old lion-like devil. The youthful David never mentioned killing a lion to anyone until it was absolutely necessary, and then only to one man: Saul.

People need not hear our report, but rather enjoy the results that come from such experiences in our lives. You’ll remember Samson did not tell his parents of killing a lion with his bare hands, but they shared the sweet pleasure in the benefits of his personal victory. It is noticeable that soon after, when he told the world his secret, things started downhill.

It is written, after Jesus’ mighty triumph over Satan in the Wilderness, the devil left Him for a season. Then it says, “And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit.” This conquest is recorded, but nowhere does Jesus recount it to others. The outcome from this event was “and He taught (fed them the honey of the Word) in their synagogues.”

Yield not to temptation, for yielding is sin;Each vict’ry will help you some other to win;Fight manfully onward, dark passions subdue;Look ever to Jesus, He’ll carry you through.