Sunday, October 21, 2018

Meditating on God's Word

"His delight is in the law of the Lord, and on His law he meditates day and night." Psalm 1:2

Do not many of you read the Bible in a very hurried way--just a little bit, and off you go! Do you not soon forget what you have read, and lose what little effect it seemed to have?

How few of you are resolved to get at its soul, its juice, its life, its essence--and to drink in its meaning. Well, if you do not do that--then your reading is miserable reading, dead reading, unprofitable reading; it is not reading at all, the name would be misapplied. May the blessed Spirit give you repentance concerning this thing.

Meditation and careful thought, exercise us and strengthen the soul for the reception of the yet more lofty truths.

We must meditate, brethren. These grapes will yield no wine until we tread upon them.
These olives must be put under the wheel, and pressed again and again--that the oil may flow therefrom.

In a dish of nuts, you may know which nut has been eaten by a worm--because there is a little hole which the worm has punctured through the shell. It is just a little hole, and then inside there is the living worm eating up the kernel.

In the same way, it is a grand thing to bore through the shell of the letter of Scripture--and then to live inside feeding upon the kernel.

I would wish to be such a little worm as that, living within and upon the Word of God, having bored my way through the shell, and having reached the innermost mystery of the blessed gospel. The Word of God is always most precious to the man who most lives upon it.

Beloved, never be satisfied with a sound creed--but desire to have it engraved on the tablets of your heart.

The doctrines of grace are good, but the grace of the doctrines is better still. See that you have it, and be not content with the idea that you are well-instructed--until you so understand the doctrine that you have felt its spiritual power.

O living Christ, make this a living Word to me. Your Word is life, but not without the Holy Spirit. I may know this book of Yours from beginning to end, and repeat it all from Genesis to Revelation--and yet it may be a dead book, and I may be a dead soul.

Oh, cling to Scripture. Scripture is not Christ, but it is the silken clue which will lead you to Him. Follow its leadings faithfully.  Charles H. Spurgeon 1

1. Grace Gems 

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Blessed Perseverance


Perhaps the most comforting of the doctrines of grace, though they are all inextricably linked, is the promise that Christ preserves His people to the end, despite ourselves and our wanderings.     
The older I get the more I appreciate this exeedingly great and precious promise.     Having know many believers over the past 46 years since becoming a Christian, sadly, some of those who professed Christ have since completely fallen away from the faith and have  categorically denied everything they once professed.    Some of these people were even in the ministry and led others to Christ.   But on the other hand,  I’ve also had the joy of observing those whose faith has endured the test of time, even though they may have tripped  along the way in one way or the other.   Many of them have already made it across finish line with their faith intact and are now with the Lord.    
There are times  I when I also wander in the wilderness of worldly affections.  And  there are times when my zeal dims, my faith is weak, and like the Israelites  I am discontent and complain about my lot in life.    I know I cannot trust my stubborn sinful heart,  therefore I also understand  that there may be more occasions to come like this—especially considering what the ravages of old age and the process of dying  can do to us.  Despite the wonderful testimonies we read of saints on their deathbeds,  I know from first hand experience that not every saint who dies in the Lord goes out with praise on their lips and a smile on their face. 
But this one thing I know for sure,  my  Savior will never let me go.   I am no more able to keep myself to the end, than I was to save myself in the first place.    He alone will hold me fast.    
Lorraine Boettner writes well regarding God’s faithfulness in preserving us in our unfaithfulness and weakness. 
“As long as the believer remains in this world his state is one of warfare. He suffers temporary reverses and may for a time appear to have lost all faith; yet if he has been once truly saved, he cannot fall away completely from grace [emphasis mine]. If once he has experienced the inner change which comes through regeneration he will sooner or later return to the fold and be saved. When he comes to himself he confesses his sins and asks forgiveness, never doubting that he is saved. His lapse into sin may have injured him severely and may have brought destruction to others; but so far as he is personally concerned it is only temporary.
 “The Christian is like a man making his way up hill, who occasionally slips back, yet always has his face set toward the summit. The unregenerate man has his face turned downwards, and he is slipping all the way,” — A. H. Strong. 
“The believer, like a man on shipboard, may fall again and again on the deck, but he will never fall overboard.” — C. H. Spurgeon. 
Each one of the elect is like the prodigal son in this, that for a time he is deluded by the world and is led astray by his own carnal appetite. He tries to feed on the husks, but they do not satisfy. And sooner or later he is obliged to say, “I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight.” And he meets with the same reception, tokens of unchanging love; and a father’s welcome voice echoes through the soul, and melts the heart of the poor returning backslider, “This my son was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.” Let it be noticed that this is a thoroughly Calvinistic parable in that the prodigal was a son, and could not lose that relationship. Those who are not sons never have the desire to arise and go to the Father. 
…The Christian, too, falls many times, but is finally saved. It is unthinkable that God’s elect should fail of salvation. “There is no possibility of their escaping the omnipotent power of God, so that, like Jonah, who fled from the will of God, which was to carry the message to Nineveh, yet was pursued even into the belly of the fish by the power of God until he willingly obeyed God’s command, so they will eventually return to the Saviour, and after confession receive pardon for their sins and be saved.”1

When I fear my faith will fail
Christ will hold me fast
When the tempter would prevail
He will hold me fast
I could never keep my hold
Through life’s fearful path
For my love is often cold
He must hold me fast

He will hold me fast
He will hold me fast
For my Savior loves me so
He will hold me fast – 2



For further study: 
Grace to You Articles:  Peseverance of the Saints 
Mongergism: Perserverance of the Saints - Assorted papers
Ligonier Ministries:   Articles on Peseverance of the Saints
The Perseverance of a Saint - Brian Borgman (sermon) 

2. “He Will Hold Me Fast”;  ORIGINAL WORDS VV 1-2 BY ADA HABERSHONNEW WORDS AND MUSIC BY MATT MERKER©2013 GETTY MUSIC PUBLISHING (BMI) / MATT MERKER MUSIC (BMI) (ADMIN BY MUSICSERVICES.ORG)

Sunday, October 14, 2018

See the Destined Day Arise

See the Destined Day Arise
Original words: Venantius Fortunatus (c.530-600)  
Translator: Richard Mant (1837)
Alt. words, chorus, and music: Matthew Merker- Sovereign Grace Praise

VERSE 1 
See the destined day arise! 
See a willing sacrifice! 
Jesus, to redeem our loss, 
Hangs upon the shameful cross; 
Jesus, who but You could bear 
Wrath so great and justice fair, 
Every pang and bitter throe, 
Finishing Your life of woe? 

CHORUS 
Hallelujah! Hallelujah! 
Lamb of God for sinners slain! 
Hallelujah! Hallelujah! 
Jesus Christ, we praise Your name! 


VERSE 2 
Who but Christ had dared to drain, 
Steeped in gall, the cup of pain, 
And with tender body bear 
Thorns and nails and piercing spear? 
Slain for us, the water flowed, 
Mingled from Your side with blood; 
Sign to all attesting eyes 
Of the finished sacrifice. 

VERSE 3 
Holy Jesus, grant us grace 
In that sacrifice to place 
All our trust for life renewed, 
Pardoned sin, and promised good. 
Grant us grace to sing Your praise 
‘Round Your throne through endless days, 
Ever with the sons of light, 
“Blessing, honor, glory, might!” 

Sunday, October 7, 2018

What Wondrous Love is This?


What Wondrous Love Is This?

Author:  Anonymous
"What Wondrous Love is This" is a  Christians folk hymn, sometimes described as a  "white spiritual" , from the American South.  Its text was first published in 1811, during the Second Great Awaking,  and its melody derived from a popular English ballad. Today it is a widely known hymn included in hymnals of many Christian denominations.” –Wikipedia

What wondrous love is this, O my soul, O my soul!
What wondrous love is this, O my soul!
What wondrous love is this, that caused the Lord of bliss
To bear the dreadful curse for my soul, for my soul
To bear the dreadful curse for my soul!

When I was sinking down, sinking down, sinking down
When I was sinking down, sinking down
When I was sinking down, beneath God's righteous frown
Christ laid aside His crown for my soul for my soul
Christ laid aside His crown for my soul

To God and to the Lamb I will sing, I will sing
To God and to the Lamb I will sing
To God and to the Lamb, Who is the great I AM
While millions join the theme, I will sing, I will sing
While millions join the theme, I will sing

And when from death I'm free, I'll sing on, I'll sing on
And when from death I'm free, I'll sing on
And when from death I'm free… I'll sing His love for me
And through eternity I'll sing on, I'll sing on
And through eternity I'll sing on

Sunday, September 30, 2018

And Can It Be?


And Can It Be?
Charles Wesley - published 1738 

VERSE 1
And can it be that I should gain
An int’rest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain—
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
An int’rest in the Savior’s blood?

REFRAIN
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

VERSE 2
‘Tis myst’ry all: th’ Immortal dies:
Who can explore His strange design?
In vain the firstborn seraph tries
To sound the depths of love divine.
’Tis mercy all! Let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more.

VERSE 3
He left His Father’s throne above—
So free, so infinite His grace—
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam’s helpless race:
’Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For, O my God, it found out me!

VERSE 4
Long my imprisoned spirit lay,
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quick’ning ray—
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.

VERSE 5
No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in Him, is mine;
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness divine,
Bold I approach th’ eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Behold Our God

Behold Our God  
This presentation is beautiful!
Sovereign Grace Music: Music and Words by Jonathan Baird, Meghan Baird, Ryan Baird, and Stephen Altrogge © 2011 

VERSE 1
Who has held the oceans in His hands?
Who has numbered every grain of sand?
Kings and nations tremble at His voice
All creation rises to rejoice
CHORUS
Behold our God seated on His throne
Come, let us adore Him
Behold our King! Nothing can compare
Come, let us adore Him!
VERSE 2
Who has given counsel to the Lord?
Who can question any of His words?
Who can teach the One Who knows all things?
Who can fathom all His wondrous deeds?
VERSE 3
Who has felt the nails upon His hands
Bearing all the guilt of sinful man?
God eternal humbled to the grave
Jesus, Savior risen now to reign!
Men: You will reign forever
Women: Let Your glory fill the earth

Sunday, September 16, 2018