Bible Gems

May 29, 2009 at 06:36 o\clock

Gems worth pondering

May 28

"And the child Samuel ministered unto the Lord before Eli (Priest).  And the word of the Lord was precious in those days; there was no open vision.  And it came to pass at that time, when Eli was laid down in his place, and his eyes began to wax dim, that he could not see . . . and the Lord came, and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel.  Then Samuel answered, speak; for Thy servant heareth." (1 Samuel 3:1,2,10)

The Lord always sends refreshment in times of drought.  When there was no guidance He sent the prophet Samuel.  We must be careful as believers not to have our senses dulled by the prevailing compromise and complacency that we cannot hear God when He calls.  We cannot be sleeping but should always be awake and aware of His presence and listen to others for advice on how to prepare our hearts for His Word.  (B.R. - Meditations on 1 Samuel)

N.J. Hiebert # 3718

May 29

"Be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is the good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God." 
(Romans 12:2)  

If ever there was a day when it was important for every professed follower of Christ to stand fast and to be true to his profession, I believe it is the present day.  There is no answer to infidelity like the life of Christ displayed by the Christian.  Nothing puts the madness of the infidel and the folly of the superstitious more to shame and silence than the humble, quiet devoted walk of a thoroughgoing, heavenly minded, divinely taught Christian.  It may be in the unlearned and poor and despised; but, like the scent of the lowly violet, it gives its perfume abroad, and both God and man take notice of it.

In the experience of almost every believer, there is some turning point, where he either goes onward in devotedness to the Lord, or sinks down into a mere commonplace Christian.  Not one of us is too obscure to be tried as to whether we will seek God's honour or present things first.

God is very jealous of all man's substitutes and imitations of the power of the Holy Spirit.  In stripping ourselves of such things, we may seem to others to be throwing away our influence and our usefulness.  But what is usefulness?  What is "doing good"?  It is dong the will of God.  (Christian Truth - Vol. 19 -1966)

N.J. Hiebert # 3719

May 30

"Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out." 
(John 12:31)

Two things give character to all true service in the present day.  One is, the world has rejected Christ; and the other, God has rejected the world

These two facts, if practically acted upon, would materially alter the character of that which professes to be the service of God, as well as the labours of many who render true service of God in some respects, but whose chief efforts are now misdirected. "In every good work doing the will of God."  A work  may be good in itself, but if it is not according to the will of God for the present moment, then it loses its savour to Him, and is deprived of its true value. (H.N.)   

N.J. Hiebert # 3720

May 25, 2009 at 15:07 o\clock

Gems worth pondering

May 24

"Against Thee, Thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in Thy sight . . . Thou desirest truth in the inward parts . . . wash me and I shall be whiter than snow. . . . Hide Thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities." 
(Psalm 51:4,7,9)

This world hates the God of David, because it hates grace.  The world rather likes David's taking Uriah's wife (for that is the world's manner of life!).  But for Jehovah not to reckon this sin as damning guilt, and freely to forgive David - and that so fully as to give "her that had been the wife of Uriah" another son, and bestow His special love on him (Solomon) to the extent of giving him a personal name, Jedidiah "for Jehovah's sake" (2 Samuel 12:24,25) and placing this woman Bathsheba in the official genealogy of Christ (Matthew 1:6); and above all, for God to call David a man "after His own heart" - all this rouses the ire of a vile, self-righteous, neighbour-judging, blind, grace-ignorant, impenitent world - a world that has neither repented, nor means to repent, of the very sins into which David fell, and of which he repented most deeply.  (TCN - W.B.N.)

N.J. Hiebert # 3714

May 25

"I am the way the truth and the life, no man cometh unto the Father but by me."
(John 14:6)

The headline of the National Post read, "Trouble at the Border."  It then outlined a number of security gaps which permitted the unwanted to slip undetected into the country.  There may be trouble at earthly borders, but there are none at heaven's.  No one enters that holy place of purity and joy unless they have confessed to being a sinner and trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ.  Only then will they be assured of an entrance. (Arnot P. McIntee)

Only a step to Jesus!
Believe and thou shalt live,
Lovingly now He's waiting,
And ready to forgive
.
(D.W. Whittle)

N.J. Hiebert # 3715

May 26

"For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our
hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ
."
(2 Corinthians 4:6)

When a cloud comes between us and the sun, it robs us for the time of the enjoyment of his beams.  It does not prevent Him from shining, it merely hinders our enjoyment of Him.  Exactly so is it when we allow trials and sorrows, difficulties and perplexities, to hide from our souls the bright beams of our Father's countenance, which ever shine, with changeless lustre, in the face of Jesus Christ.  (Food for the Desert)

N.J. Hiebert # 3716

May 27

"Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith."
(Hebrews 12:2)

- How easily we stray whenever we get on the line of expediency.  The Lord must have the first place, or we shall soon drift on the rocks.

- Two lessons we need to learn - first to be brought to an end of ourselves and also to be brought to the end of man, and we then expect nothing from self, and nothing from man.

- If our hearts are set on one single thing on which the heart of God is not set, in so far we are out of communion.

(Edward Dennett - Footprints for Pilgrims)

N.J. Hiebert # 3717 

May 22, 2009 at 20:56 o\clock

Gems worth pondering

May 22

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

The story is told of a small boy trying very hard to lift a heavy object.  His father coming into the room and noting the son's struggle asked him, "Are you using all your strength?"  "Yes, of course I am," the boy impatiently exclaimed.  You are not" the father answered.  "You haven't asked me to help you."

If the burden is too heavy to bear, it is time to ask God our Father for help.  Our own puny supply of power is so often insufficient for the disappointments and difficulties we have to face.  Let us form the habit of asking for God's help.  God will allow no suffering, no trial above what we are able to  bear. 

For He says in 1 Corinthians 10:13,
"God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted (tried) above that ye are  able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it."  (Selected)

N.J. Hiebert # 3712 

May 23

"Why seek ye the living among the dead?  He is not here, but He is risen:  REMEMBER . . . And they remembered His words."
(Luke 24:5,6,8)

Joey was a severely disabled student with a terminal disease who attended a Christian school.  Spring had come and Easter was near.  The teacher spent time teaching her class about the resurrection of Jesus from among the dead.  Then she gave each of her students a large plastic egg.

"Now," she said to them, "I want you to take this home and bring it back tomorrow with something inside that shows new life.  Do you understand?"
"Yes, Miss Nelson!" the children responded enthusiastically - all except for Joey.  He just listened intently, his eyes never leaving her face.  Miss Nelson wondered if he had understood what she had said about the Lord Jesus' death and resurrection?  Perhaps she should call his parents that evening and explain the assignment to them, but in the busyness of her day she forgot about phoning Joey's parents.

The next morning, 19 excited children came to school, laughing and talking as they placed their eggs in the large wicker basket on Miss Nelson's desk.  Soon it was time to open the eggs and in the first egg, she found a flower.

"Oh yes, a flower is certainly a sign of new life," she said.  "When plants peek through the ground we know that spring is here."

The next egg contained a realistic plastic butterfly.  "We all know that a caterpillar changes and grows into a beautiful butterfly.  Yes, that is new life, too."

Next was a rock with green moss on it.  She explained that moss, too, showed life.
The fourth egg - Joey's egg - was empty.  Because she did not want to embarrass him, she quietly set the egg aside and reached for another.
Joey spoke up; "Miss Nelson, aren't you going to talk about my egg?"
She stammered, "Joey...your egg is empty".  But tears filled her eyes as she listened to Joey's explanation.

He said softly, "Yes, but Jesus' tomb was empty, too.  Jesus was killed and put in there.  Then His Father raised Him up to life!"
Three months later, Joey died.  On top of his casket were 19 empty plastic eggs.
"Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live."  (John 11:25)
(The Christian Shepherd - December 2008)

N.J. Hiebert # 3713

May 20, 2009 at 16:24 o\clock

Gems worth pondering

May 18

"Put that on mine account."  (Philemon 18)

Recently I was buying an item for $4.50 with a friend.  At the counter I could not find my wallet.  I said to the cashier, "I'm sorry, I forgot my money."  A total stranger  behind me immediately said, "I'll pay that for you."  When I told him about my friend in the store, he repeated very earnestly, "I will pay that for you." I thanked him and waited for my friend.  I thought of how we stood before God - sinners, with nothing to pay.  Yet there was One, the Lord Jesus, who paid the debt for us.  What grace!  (Ben Tuininga)

He paid a debt He did not owe, I owed a debt I could not pay;
I needed someone to wash my sins away;
And now I sing a brand new song,
Amazing grace!  Christ Jesus paid the debt that I could never pay
.
(Choice Gleanings)

N.J. Hiebert # 3708

May 19

"Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." (Psalm 119:105)

There are four great passages in the New Testament which set forth Christian character in all its winsomeness and power:

- Matthew 5:3-12 with its nine beatitudes;
- 1 Corinthians 13, with its sixteen matchless qualities;
- Galatians 5:22,23, with its ninefold cluster of heavenly fruit;

- 2 Peter 1:5-8, with its description of fully developed Christian manhood.

- The words in Matthew 5 present a character schooled in humility, matured by suffering, instinct with gentleness, and purity, and love.  "Blessed are the poor in spirit ... they that mourn ... the meek ... they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness ... the merciful ... the pure in heart ... the peacemakers  ... they which are persecuted ... blessed are ye, when men shall revile you ... rejoice and be exceeding glad: for your reward is in heaven ..."  

-  1 Corinthians 13 is perhaps the noblest assemblage of beautiful thoughts extant in this our world.  "And now abideth faith, hope, and charity (love); but the greatest of these is love."

- The paragraph in Galatians 5 unfolds the secret whereby we may have days of heaven upon earth.  "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law."

- 2 Peter 1, assuming faith as the foundation rises majestically, step by step, until the structure is crowned with that love which is the fulfilling of the Law.  " . . . giving all diligence ...  add to your faith virtue ... knowledge ... temperance ... patience ... godliness ... brotherly kindness ... love ... neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ." 

  (Henry Durbanville - Winsome Christianity) 

N.J. Hiebert # 3709

May 20

"Chasten thy son (seeing) there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying."
(Proverbs 19:18)

The young twig is pliant, and may be bent aright or pruned to bear fruit.  Love is not indifferent but takes pains; and chastening is a greater sorrow to a father than to the son that needs it.  To allow evil, whatever the plea, is to set one's soul on causing "him to die."  We, Christians on earth, endure chastening, which, though painful for the moment, afterward yields peaceful fruits of righteousness to those exercised thereby.  (William Kelly - The Proverbs)

N.J. Hiebert # 3710

May 21

"Casting all your cares upon HIM; for HE careth for you."
(1 Peter 5:7)

The Saviour Can Solve Every Problem

The Saviour can lift every burden,  The heavy as well as the light;
His strength is made perfect in weakness,  In Him there is power and might.

The Saviour can bear every sorrow,  In Him there is comfort and rest;
No matter how great the affliction,  He only permits what is best.

The Saviour can strengthen the weary,  His grace is sufficient for all;
He knows every step of the pathway,  And listens to hear when we call.

The Saviour can break sin's dominion,  The victory He won long ago;
In Him there is freedom from bondage,  He's able to conquer the foe.

The Saviour can satisfy fully  The heart that the world cannot fill;
His presence will sanctify wholly  The soul that is yielded and still.

The Saviour can solve every problem,
The tangles of life can undo;
There is nothing too hard for Jesus,
There is nothing that He cannot do
.
(Oswald J. Smith)

N.J. Hiebert # 3711

May 16, 2009 at 15:01 o\clock

Gems worth pondering

May 15

"And say to Archippus, take heed to the ministry which thou hast received in the Lord, that thou fulfill it."
(Colossians 4:17)

Promptness and energy are as important in spiritual service as in anything else.  There is an incident related in connection with two leading generals of the Southern Confederacy of America that might well speak to every servant of Christ.  General Robert E. Lee once sent word to General Stonewall Jackson that he would be glad to talk with him at his convenience on some mater of no great urgency.  General Jackson instantly rode to Headquarters, through most inclement weather.  When General Lee expressed surprise at seeing him, Jackson exclaimed, "General Lee's slightest wish is a supreme command to me, and I always take pleasure in prompt obedience."  It is to be hoped that this same spirit laid hold of Archippus, and that he profited by the prodding of the aged apostle. 
(H.A. Ironside - Lectures on Colossians)

N.J. Hiebert # 3705

May 16

"Serving the Lord with all lowliness." 
(Acts 20:19)

We are but leaden pipes to let the water down from the cistern above - dry till it flows in above and dry if it ceases to flow in.  It is good to remember this at all times and to walk humbly in the truth of it. . . .  I found it useful (the remembrance of it) in praying before speaking.  Oft not a word seemed with me to give, and the spreading out before the Lord His estimate of the worthiness of His Son to be spoken about, and His will that He should be announced, has been followed by a full fresh flow of water of the word of life.

Believe me, you can only plead with God as you know Christ.  He alone is the channel by which God can bless. . . .  The power of intercession is a great thing to the servant of God.

It ennobles a Christian immensely to know and to feel that he is a channel through which the life of Christ is to flow out.

Happy the person who has an empty vessel and God ever ready to fill.  Unhappy they who have no empty vessel. . . . I doubt whether many know the sweetness of going into the presence of God as a channel or pipe to be filled in order to bring out what is wanted for others, saying, "I have got the ear and heart of Christ."

Which is most worthy to occupy our thoughts - the littleness of our love or the fulness of that love which passes knowledge?  (G.V. Wigram)

N.J. Hiebert # 3706 

May 17

"Whatsoever He saith unto you, DO IT."
(John 2:5)

WILLINGNESS - THE SECRET OF KNOWING

How are you to know what He says to you?   It is easy to know if we are really willing to know, and willing to obey when we do know!  He has spoken so plainly to us in His Word!  In that, He tells us exactly what to do.  It is most wonderful how He has said everything there for us, told us everything we ought to do.  When you read a chapter, listen and watch to see what He says to you in it. 

There is another way in which He tells us what to do.  He speaks to you through your conscience.  Now "whatsoever He saith unto you, do it!"  Whether easy or hard, do it because He tells you; do it for love of Him, and it will be much better and happier to obey the Lord than to please yourself.  "Whatsoever He saith unto you do it!" "DO IT!"  Do the exact thing He would have you do, not something a little bit different, or something which you think will be nearly the same, but do "it."

And do it at once.  It is so true, that the very first moment is the easiest for obedience.  Every minute that you put off doing the right thing makes it harder.  Do not let your Lord have to "speak twice" to you.  "Whatsoever He saith unto you, do it" cheerfully, exactly, instantly.  (Francis Ridley Havergal - Opened Treasures) 

N.J. Hiebert # 3707

May 13, 2009 at 17:35 o\clock

Gems worth pondering

May 12

SHEPHERD'S CARE

"He maketh me to lie down in green pastures." 
(Psalm 23:2)

No other class of livestock requires more careful handling, more detailed direction, than sheep.  For them to lie down:

1. They must be free of fear;

2. Because of the social behaviour within a flock, sheep will not lie down unless they are free from friction with others of their own kind;

3. If tormented by flies or parasites, sheep will not lie down;  There are many irritations - "being bugged" - frustrations that only can be alleviated by the Shepherd.

4. They must be free from hunger. (Selected)


N.J. Hiebert # 3702

May 13

"For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God."
(Romans 3:23)

The story is told of two men who were trying to escape from an erupting volcano.  As the fiery molten rock gushed out of its gaping crater, they fled in the only direction open to them.   All went well until they came to a stream of hot, smoking lava about 30 feet across. Sizing up their situation, they realized that their only hope was to get over that wide barrier.  One of the men was old and arthritic; the other was a healthy young track star who could broad jump 25 feet.  With a running start, they each tried to leap to safety.  The first man went only a few feet through the air before falling into the bubbling mass.  The younger, with his greater strength and skill, catapulted himself much further.  Though he almost made it, he still missed the mark.  It didn't matter that he outdistanced his companion, for he too perished in the burning lava.

Now I don't know whether or not this actually happened, but it does illustrate an important spiritual truth - man cannot save himself.  The Bible says, "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God."  No one can make it to Heaven on his own. Some may pride themselves in their good works, fine reputation, and charitable deeds, but everyone falls short.  To break the law in just one point is to be guilty of all (James 2:10).

No matter how good or how bad you are, you need Christ.  He lived a perfect life, and His death on the cross has bridged the gap between you and a holy God.  So place your trust in the Lord.  The Scripture says, "There is, therefore, now no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus" (Romans 8:1).        

(R.W.D)

'Tis simply to receive Him,  The holy One and just;
'Tis only to believe Him -  It is not "try" but "trust
."
(Anon)

We are saved by God's mercy, not by our merit - by Christ's dying, not by our doing!

N.J. Hiebert # 3703
________________________________________________________________

Our Daily Bread, RBC Ministries, Copyright (1979), Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted permission.

May 14

"He that keepeth the commandment keepeth his own soul; but he that despiseth His ways shall die."  (Proverbs 19:16)

Man was made in God's image, after His likeness.  He had dominion given him over fish and fowl, cattle and reptile, and over all the earth too.  Yet was he put under commandment.  And "he that keepeth the commandment keepeth his soul; as he that despiseth,"  or is reckless of, "his ways shall die."  So Adam proved, and no less Adam's race.  Even when no open sin was, man must bow to God.  To seek independency of God is his ruin.  To look up in gratitude and obey Him is not only the first of human duties, but vital to man whose breath is in his nostrils, and his life but a vapour.  When sin entered and death through sin, how very evident and urgent it was that he should be dependent on that God who forthwith held out a Deliverer from the power of evil before banishing him from the paradise he had lost by his disobedience!  (William Kelly)

N.J. Hiebert # 3704

May 10, 2009 at 18:48 o\clock

Gems worth pondering

May 9

"Jesus Christ the SAME yesterday, and today, and for ever."
(Hebrews 13:8)

"ABLE to succour them that are tempted."  (Hebrews 2:18)
"ABLE  also to save them to the uttermost."  (Hebrews 7:25)
"ABLE to make all grace abound toward you."  (2 Corinthians 9:8)
"ABLE to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think." (Ephesians 3:20)
"ABLE to keep you from falling, and present you faultless." (Jude 24)
(Till HE Come - Oct. - Nov. 1972)

N.J Hiebert # 3699

May 10

"Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand Amalek prevailed. But Moses' hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun." (Exodus 17:10-12)

It is edifying to mark the contrast between Moses on the hill and Christ on the throne.  The hands of our great Intercessor can never hang down.  His intercession never fluctuates .  "He ever liveth to make intercession for them" (Hebrews 7:25).  His intercession is never ceasing and all prevailing.  Having taken His place on high, in the power of divine righteousness, He acts for us, according to what He is, and according to the infinite perfection of what He has done.  His hands can never hang down, nor can He need any one to hold them up.  (Extract - Christian Truth - Vol. 21 - August 1968) 


N.J. Hiebert # 3700

May 11

THE PREVALENCE OF SORROW

"Man is born to sorrow, as the sparks fly upward."
(Job 5:7)

"All history narrates it (Job 5:7); all poetry sings of it; all biography confesses it; all experience teems with it; there is not one beating heart among us all that does not know it.  And mark that while righteousness brings blessedness and peace, it does not bring exemption from life's bitter trials."

So said a great preacher of the Victorian era; and the testimony of the Bible and the experience of the saints right down the centuries bear witness to the truth of his words.  Philosophers may deride Genesis 3, but they cannot account for the facts of life without its aid.  For that little section of the Book of God not only explains how sin came into the world, but also throws light on the sorrow which ever accompanies it (Genesis 3:16,17).

In a world which has been completely disarranged by sin, the experience of sorrow in one form or another is inevitable; that nevertheless God, Whose prerogative it is to bring good out of evil, uses it for the enrichment of the character and the deepening of the spiritual life of His people; that indeed it is an indispensable prerequisite in all who would attain to skill in comfort's art, and who would strengthen those that mourn.  In other words, sorrow is common, purposeful, beneficent.  (George Henderson - Heaven's Cure for Earth's Care)

N.J. Hiebert # 3701

May 7, 2009 at 17:25 o\clock

Gems worth pondering

May 6

"The love of God manifested toward us." (1 John 4:9)
"Perfected in us."  (1 John 4:12)
"Perfected with us." (JND Trans.) (1 John 4:17)

We are called upon to love one another because love is of God, and the character and nature of one born of God is to love.  God's love was manifested in the gift of His Son when we had no love for Him; and now, in the midst of a heartless world, we are exhorted to love one another.  This has often been spoken of; may we show it in true self-denial and devotedness."  (From - Christian Friend - 1894))

N.J. Hiebert # 3696

May 7

"Casting all your care upon Him, for He careth for you."  (1 Peter 5:7)
....................................................................................................................

The psalmist wrote,
- "Be still, and know that I am God" (Psalm 46:10).
Paul exhorted the Philippians to,
- "Be careful (anxious) for nothing"  (Philippians 4:6). 
And Peter instructed his readers,
- "Casting all your cares on Him" (1 Peter 5:7).

How can someone stop worrying and be "still"?  Only through prayer and trust in the loving God (Philippians 4:6-7).  Those who cast their cares on Him can set aside the noise and confusion, ambitions and strivings, and enter into the peace of God (v.7).

This doesn't mean that those who are "still" before the Lord will escape life's dangers and dilemmas, but it does mean they will have the ability to live with tranquility in the midst of them.  Though trouble may remain, the confusion, apprehension, and despair begin to fade away.  Such people show poise under pressure; they're unshaken by life's alarms; they radiate peace wherever they go.

If you've never acquainted yourself with the depths of God's love and His call for you to live in that love, your life will be filled with anxiety and cares.  You'll often be fretful and restless - always looking for that illusive "something more."

When you learn to turn your confidence toward God and cast your cares on Him, you can be calm in the midst of life's demands.  (Selected)

N.J. Hiebert # 3697

May 8

"I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto Thy testimonies." (Psalm 119:59)

- Drop what weighs you down by giving it to God.
- Through prayer, the public business of the nation can become the private business of the Christian.
- Remembering Christ's death for us should cause us to live for Him.
- To survive the storms of life, be anchored to the Rock of Ages.
- Trials can be God's way of triumph.
- Through prayer, we we have instant access to to our Father.
(Some Thoughts to Consider - R.K.)

N.J. Hiebert # 3698

May 4, 2009 at 01:29 o\clock

Gems worth pondering

May 4

"For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich." 
(2 Corinthians 8:9)

How rich was He?  Such a question plunges us into thoughts of His glory that amaze and astonish.  His riches include all His glory in deity. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." (John 1:1) Can we poor finite creatures comprehend that?  No.  Go back before Genesis 1, go back before the world was, back as far as the mind can go; and when you get there, He "was" there, and He "was God."  "All things were created by Him and for Him." (Colossians 1:16) There is no single exception; all was created by Him and for Him.

Go through the Word of God and you will find many verses which tell of His riches.  He speaks through Isaiah the prophet, "I clothe the heavens with blackness, and I make sackcloth their covering."  (Isaiah 50:3)  Yes, He "was rich"; not as man saw Him in His pathway on earth.  Here He was with the poor and, according to men's standards, He was poor.  We never read of the Lord having had a piece of money.  He came into the world in the stable of an inn.  He was laid in one man's manger, and when He was to leave the world, He was placed in another man's tomb.  Surely when Scripture speaks of His having been rich, it refers to all that He had before He became a man.  (Paul Wilson.)

N.J. Hiebert # 3694

May 5

Satisfaction

I.  "I shall be satisfied." (Psalm 17:15)

I SHALL be satisfied,
But not while here below,
Where every earthly cup of bliss
Is wisely mixed with woe.
When this frail form shall be
For ever laid aside,
And in His likeness I awake,
I shall be satisfied

II. "He . . . shall be satisfied."  (Isaiah 53:11)

He shall be satisfied
When all He died to win,
By loving-kindness gently drawn,
Are safely gathered in.
When in the glory bright
He views His glorious bride,
Sees of the travail of His soul,
He shall be satisfied

These lines were found in the Bible of a young believer after she had departed to be with Christ.  Ed.

(Christian Friend, Vol. 16, 1889, p. 196 -
Submitted, with thanks, from a reader.)

N.J. Hiebert # 3695

May 2, 2009 at 06:33 o\clock

Gems worth pondering

April 30

"Ye are not under law, but under grace."  (Romans 6:14)

When Moses was in Egypt, to punish Pharaoh God turned the waters into blood.  When Christ was on earth He turned the water into wine.  That is the difference between law and grace.  The law says, "Kill him"; grace says, "Forgive him."  Law says, "Condemn him"; grace says, "Love him."  When the law came out of Horeb three thousand men were destroyed (Exodus 32:28).  At Pentecost, under grace, three thousand men found life (Acts 2:41).  What a difference!  When Moses came to the burning bush, he was commanded to take the shoes from off his feet.  When the prodigal came home after sinning he was given a pair of shoes to put on his feet.  How thankful to be under grace rather than under the law.   (D.L. Moody)

N.J. Hiebert # 3690

May 1

"Be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility; for God resisteth
the proud, and giveth grace to the humble
." 
(1 Peter 5:5)

Two ladies who lived in Shanghai were talking one day about the famous missionary Hudson Taylor.  They wondered if he was ever tempted to be proud because of his many achievements.  Finally they put the question to Mrs. Taylor.

Not knowing the answer, she went to her husband and asked him.  Surprised, he inquired , "Proud about what?"
His wife replied, "Why, about all the things you've done."

Taylor gave this startling answer:  "I never knew I had done anything!"  He was not expressing a false humility, but merely recognizing that everything he had was a gift from God, and that whatever he had accomplished could be credited to Christ who worked in him and through him.

Let's allow the Holy Spirit to examine our hearts and motives so that we will not think too highly of our selves.  Pride accomplishes nothing of lasting value.  (Extract)

N.J. Hiebert # 3691

May 2

"But as one was felling a beam, the axe-head fell into the water; and he cried, and said, Alas, master! for it was borrowed. And the man of God said, Where fell it?  And he showed him the place.  And he cut down a stick, and cast it in thither; and the iron did swim.  Therefore said he, take it up to thee.  And he put out his hand, and took it."  (2 Kings 6:5-7)

When Elisha restored the lost axe to his disciple, he entirely discarded the old handle, which had become loosened from the iron, and cast into the water another stick which he had cut down, and to which the iron rose.  There is a lesson here for us.

The work had been suddenly brought to a stand-still and the cry of distress, "Alas, master!" brought Elisha to the spot.  It may be good for us to be halted at times so that we may receive back from the Master the old axe-head with a new handle, and learn to use it aright.  It will still be the old axe, and the old truth, but we have been handling it wrongly and so ultimately have lost it.

Our aimless; preaching and our drowsy discussion of worn-out controversies may be the wrong handle and be unsuited to the old axe in these days when our earnest work demands suitable instruments.  People will not listen to us simply because we are respected preachers!  However, we should not be afraid to have our faith tested as to its vitality and suitability to the needs of men - do we not believe in its divine origin and have we not experienced its power?  The cause of Christ will ultimately prosper only if hollow, unthinking assent be replaced by a genuine, earnest inquiry into its truth and then by conviction.  (A. Edersheim)

N.J. Hiebert # 3692

May 3

"It is written."  (Matthew 4:4)

The Bible is a God-given oracle, carrying His authority, perfectly adapted to every need, every circumstance, and every period of the Church's history.  "Do ye not therefore err?"  He says to the unbelieving Sadducees.  And why did they err?  because they knew "not the Scriptures, neither the power of God."  Herein was the fault - they knew not the Scriptures.  Man, when left to the petty reasonings of his own mind, gets into all kinds of folly; he falls into superstition on the one hand, or infidelity on the other. 

But both these extremes agree in shutting out God's Word.  It has been Satan's object in all ages to cut out the Word of God; or, if he cannot do so, to render it null and void.  Sometimes he accomplishes this by insinuating doubts, raising the question, "Is it even so that God has said?"  - in our own day this takes the form of "modernism."  Sometimes he displaces the Scripture by tradition and the teachings and doctrines of men.

Our Lord Himself answered all such suggestions.  He met Satan in person by the all-sufficiency word, "It is written."  He met the Sadducees, whom we may call the "modernists" of that day, as He also met the Pharisees and scribes - those tradition mongers of old - by the simple word, "God said,"  "Did ye never read in the Scriptures?"  "What is this then that is written?"  He used the written Word to silence every objection and to refute every form of error; and surely if He thus accredited the Scripture, this is enough for all who have reverence for Him.  (F.G.B.)

N.J. Hiebert # 3693