Monday, January 19, 2015

Christian Humility

From Mark Dever, pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, D.C.:
Christian humility, is to simply accept whatever God has revealed in His Word. Humility is following God's Word wherever it goes, as far as it goes, not either going beyond it or stopping short of it...The humility we want in our churches is to read the Bible and believe it...It is not humble to be hesitant where God has been clear and plan."

Monday, January 12, 2015

Rest Assured

“They did eat of the fruit of the land of Canaan that year.”  Joshua 5:12

Israel’s weary wanderings were all over, and the promised rest was attained. No more moving tents, fiery serpents, fierce Amalekites, and howling wildernesses: they came to the land which flowed with milk and honey, and they ate the old corn of the land. Perhaps this year, beloved Christian reader, this may be thy case or mine. Joyful is the prospect, and if faith be in active exercise, it will yield unalloyed delight. To be with Jesus in the rest which remaineth for the people of God, is a cheering hope indeed, and to expect this glory so soon is a double bliss. Unbelief shudders at the Jordan which still rolls between us and the goodly land, but let us rest assured that we have already experienced more ills than death at its worst can cause us. Let us banish every fearful thought, and rejoice with exceeding great joy, in the prospect that this year we shall begin to be “forever with the Lord.”
A part of the host will this year tarry on earth, to do service for their Lord. If this should fall to our lot, there is no reason why the New Year’s text should not still be true. “We who have believed do enter into rest.” The Holy Spirit is the earnest of our inheritance; he gives us “glory begun below.” In heaven they are secure, and so are we preserved in Christ Jesus; there they triumph over their enemies, and we have victories too. Celestial spirits enjoy communion with their Lord, and this is not denied to us; they rest in his love, and we have perfect peace in him: they hymn his praise, and it is our privilege to bless him too. We will this year gather celestial fruits on earthly ground, where faith and hope have made the desert like the garden of the Lord. Man did eat angels’ food of old, and why not now? O for grace to feed on Jesus, and so to eat of the fruit of the land of Canaan this year!

Charles Spurgeon, Morning by Morning

Monday, January 5, 2015

The Best Test of Growth

How do we know that we're growing "in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ?"  One simple test involves our hunger for him.  Follow the link below to a brief article from Tim Challies that describes this kind of hunger.

The Best Test of Growth at Challies.com

Monday, December 29, 2014

Live Through Faith

We live through faith, and we die through faith.  Everything else is garbage.  Even works of righteousness, if not done through faith, are works of self-righteousness and therefore filthy rags.  Be very careful about going to church, reading your Bible, saying prayers, doing good deeds, and reading books like this through anything but faith in the living Lord.  Because the result of all that is belief in a phony Jesus and inoculation to the gospel.  You can end up knowing the jargon and playing pretend.  Be very careful.  Watch your life and your doctrine closely. (1 Tim. 4:16).  ~ Matt Chandler, The Explicit Gospel 

Monday, December 22, 2014

God With Us, and We With Him!

"Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel."
Isaiah 7:14

Let us today go down to Bethlehem, and in company with wondering shepherds and adoring Magi, let us see him who was born King of the Jews, for we by faith can claim an interest in him, and can sing, "Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given." Jesus is Jehovah incarnate, our Lord and our God, and yet our brother and friend; let us adore and admire. Let us notice at the very first glance his miraculous conception. It was a thing unheard of before, and unparalleled since, that a virgin should conceive and bear a Son. The first promise ran thus, "The seed of the woman," not the offspring of the man. Since venturous woman led the way in the sin which brought forth Paradise lost, she, and she alone, ushers in the Regainer of Paradise. Our Saviour, although truly man, was as to his human nature the Holy One of God. Let us reverently bow before the holy Child whose innocence restores to manhood its ancient glory; and let us pray that he may be formed in us, the hope of glory. Fail not to note his humble parentage. His mother has been described simply as "a virgin," not a princess, or prophetess, nor a matron of large estate. True the blood of kings ran in her veins; nor was her mind a weak and untaught one, for she could sing most sweetly a song of praise; but yet how humble her position, how poor the man to whom she stood affianced, and how miserable the accommodation afforded to the new-born King!

Immanuel, God with us in our nature, in our sorrow, in our lifework, in our punishment, in our grave, and now with us, or rather we with him, in resurrection, ascension, triumph, and Second Advent splendour.

~ Charles Spurgeon, Morning by Morning

Monday, December 15, 2014

Christmas Spirit, or Christian Snob?

In Knowing God, J.I. Packer puts the "Christmas spirit" in perspective for us: 
"The Christmas spirit does not shine out in the Christian snob.  For the Christmas spirit is the spirit of those who, like their Master, live their whole lives on the principle of making themselves poor - spending and being spent - to enrich their fellow-men, giving time, trouble, care and concern, to do good to others..."

Monday, December 8, 2014

Now, and Not Yet

The righteous standing of God's people has been accomplished through Christ's work, and the work of purification continues by the Spirit's work among us.

The Lord is daily at work in smoothing out wrinkles and cleansing spots.  From this it follows that the church's holiness is not yet complete.  The church is holy, then, in the sense that it is daily advancing and is not yet perfect.  Mark Dever, quoting John Calvin in The Church: The Gospel Made Visible