Elkaar opbouwen in het geloof (Engelse versie)

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J.C. Philpot
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Elkaar opbouwen in het geloof (Engelse versie)

Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 06 Jul 2007, 23:41

Hieronder een engelse versie van het topic "Elkaar opbouwen in het geloof".

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 06 Jul 2007, 23:42

July 7
"And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand." John 10:28

The Lord says, "I give unto them (that is, my sheep) eternal life;" not, "I will give them in the life to come; but I give it unto them now." We therefore read, "He that believes on the Son has everlasting life"--has it now, as a present, felt, and enjoyed possession. This life is given manifestly when Christ reveals himself to the soul; for eternal life is then received out of his fullness as an enjoyed possession. All, then, who have truly fled for refuge, to lay hold of the hope set before them, embrace in so doing eternal life. They live, as being manifestly in Christ, for he is "our life;" and as they embrace it in him they feel its sweet movements in their breast, in the joy it communicates, in the peace it imparts, in the prospects it opens, in the doubts it removes, in the fears it disperses.

Thus, in real religion, there is something, if I may so speak, tangible, something to be laid hold of; and this distinguishes a good hope through grace from every other hope which is delusive, enthusiastic, or visionary. Depend upon it, there is a reality in vital godliness, a possession for eternity, which, therefore, kills and deadens the living child of God to a perishing world, and the fading things of time and sense. Whenever we get a view of Christ, there is a view of eternal life in him; for he is the eternal Son of God, and when he makes himself known to the soul as such, he shows us that all our life is in him. The work that he accomplished is for eternity; he lives himself forever and ever; and those whom he has redeemed by his blood, justified by his righteousness, and sanctified by his grace, will live forever and ever in his glorious presence. It is the eternity of his love which stamps it with its main value and blessedness; for this life being eternal, secures not only perpetuity, but immutability, prevents it from any change in time as well as from any change in eternity, and secures it firm and stable to all the heirs of promise. As, then, they lay hold of eternal life in laying hold of him who is the life, and as the sweet movements of hope spring up in their breast, it opens before their eyes a vista of immortal joy.

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 07 Jul 2007, 22:27

July 8

"I will set him on high, because he has known my name." Psalm 91:14


A man must know the Lord's name before ever he can feel any real love to him. Now this is needful, this is what the Lord does for his people, he causes them to know his name. "They shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest" (Jer. 31:34). "They shall all;" they shall. The Lord has declared it. They shall know me. Now what is the name of the Lord? When God revealed himself unto Moses, did he not say, "I AM THAT I AM?" This was the way God taught Moses his name, and we may gather from it that whatever God is, that is his name. God is holy, God is just, God is merciful, God is a God of love. Now the sinner must know this. He must know that God is a pure and holy God, and at first when he is beginning to learn this lesson, he is completely astonished and appalled by it. It causes him to shrink away and hide himself from God. "How can I appear before God, who is of purer eyes than to behold iniquity?" he cries. And so you see it brings distress into his conscience.

It is the first work of the Spirit to "convince of sin," and a sense of God's holiness is that which brings us this conviction--our sin and God's purity. How can the sinner appear before and approach to God? And while he is under the terrors of the law, he is full of distress, and at times, perhaps, wishes he had never been born, and at other times he is tempted with hard thoughts of God, reaping where he had not sown, and gathering where he had not strawed. This is how God is seen in his perverted mind. The devil is at him, and tries all he can to harden his heart against the Almighty. But the terrors of the Almighty have taken hold of him, and he tries many ways to get these arrows extracted; but all his tugging and pulling only make the wound worse. And so he goes on until he is brought to see that God is a God of mercy--and this is revealed to him in and through the Lord Jesus. This is what clears up the mystery--when he sees Christ bleeding on the cross. Here he sees God is both a just God and a Savior. God is pure and holy, and exacts to the utmost farthing all the enormous debt he owes, and yet to the bleeding, broken heart, he, through Christ, can and does manifest his mercy.

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 09 Jul 2007, 07:11

July 9

"The gospel of the grace of God." Acts 20:24

What does the word "gospel" signify? Its literal meaning is either "God's word" or message, or rather, "good news," or "good tidings," which is more agreeable to the original. But if it be "good news," it must be good news of something and to somebody. There must be some good tidings brought, and there must be some person by whom, as good tidings, it is received. In order, then, that the gospel should be good news, glad tidings, there must be a message from God to man, God being the Speaker, and man the hearer; he the gracious Giver, and man the happy receiver. But if the gospel means good news from heaven to earth, it can only be worthy of the name as it proclaims grace, mercy, pardon, deliverance, and salvation, and all as free gifts of God's unmerited favor. Otherwise, it would not be a gospel adapted to our needs; it would not be good news, glad tidings to us poor sinners, to us law-breakers, to us guilty criminals, to us vile transgressors, to us arraigned at the bar of infinite justice, to us condemned to die by the unswerving demands of God's holiness. And as it must be a gospel adapted to us to receive, so must it be a gospel worthy of God to give.

This gospel then, pure, clear, and free, is good news or glad tidings, as proclaiming pardon through the blood of Jesus and justification by his righteousness. It reveals an obedience whereby the law was magnified and made honorable, and a atoning sacrifice for sin by which it was forever blotted out and put away; and thus it brings glory to God and salvation to the soul. It is a pure revelation of sovereign mercy, love and grace, whereby each Person in the divine Trinity is exalted and magnified. In it "mercy and truth meet together, righteousness and peace kiss each other." As revealed in it, "truth springs out of earth" in the hearts of contrite sinners, and "righteousness," eternally satisfied by Christ's obedience, "looks down from heaven."

If you love a pure, a clear, a free gospel, "the gospel of the grace of God," you love it not only because it is so fully suitable to your needs, so thoroughly adapted to your fallen state, but because you have felt its sweetness and power; because it not only speaks of pardon, but brings pardon; not only proclaims mercy, but brings mercy; not only points out a way of salvation, but brings salvation, with all its rich attendant blessings, into your heart. It thus becomes "the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believes."

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 10 Jul 2007, 06:29

July 10

"I am the vine, you are the branches--He that abides in me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit--for without me you can do nothing." John 15:5

Without a union with Christ, we have no spiritual existence; and we may boldly say that we no more have a spiritual being in the mind of God independent of Christ, than the branch of a tree has an independent existence out of the stem in which it grows. But you will observe, also, in this figure of the vine and the branches, how all the fruitfulness of the branch depends upon its union with the vine. Whatever life there is in the branch, it flows out of the stem; whatever strength there is in the branch, it comes from its union with the stem; whatever foliage, whatever fruit, all come still out of its union with the stem. And this is the case, whether the branch be great or small. From the stoutest limb of a tree to the smallest twig, all are in union with the stem and all derive life and nourishment from it.

So it is in grace--not only is our very being, as sons and daughters of the Lord Almighty, connected with our union with Christ, but our well-being. All our knowledge, therefore, of heavenly mysteries, all our faith, all our hope, and all our love--in a word, all our grace, whether much or little, whether that of the babe, the child, the young man, or the father--flows out of a personal, spiritual, and experimental union with the Lord Jesus; for we are nothing but what we are in him, and we have nothing but what we possess by virtue of our union with him.

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 11 Jul 2007, 06:54

July 11

"And our hope of you is steadfast, knowing, that as you are partakers of the sufferings, so shall you be also of the consolation." 2 Corinthians 1:7

The Lord has appointed the path of sorrow for the redeemed to walk in. Why? One purpose is to wean them from the world; another purpose is to show them the weakness of the creature; a third purpose is to make them feel the liberty and vitality of genuine godliness made manifest in their soul's experience. What am I, and what are you when we have no trials? Light, frothy, worldly-minded, carnal, frivolous. We may talk of the things of God, but they are at a distance; there are no solemn feelings, no melting sensations, no real brokenness, no genuine contrition, no weeping at the divine feet, no embracing of Christ in the arms of affection.

But when affliction, be it in providence or be it in grace, brings a man down; when it empties him of all his high thoughts, lays him low in his own eyes, brings trouble into his heart, I assure you he needs something more than mere external religion. He needs power; he needs to experience in his soul the operations of the blessed Spirit; he wants to have a precious Jesus manifesting himself to his soul in love and blood; he needs to see his lovely countenance beaming upon him in ravishing smiles; he needs to hear the sweet whispers of dying love speaking inward peace; he needs to have the blessed Lord come into his soul, manifesting himself to him as he does not manifest himself to the world.

What brings a man here? A few dry notions floating to and fro in his brain, like a few drops of oil in a pail of water? That will never bring the life and power of vital godliness into a man's heart. It must be by being experimentally acquainted with trouble. When he is led into the path of tribulation, he then begins to long after, and, in God's own time and way, he begins to drink into, the sweetness of vital godliness, made manifest in his heart by the power of God.

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 12 Jul 2007, 07:51

July 12

"Then those who were in the ship came and worshiped him, saying, Truly, you are the Son of God." Matthew 14:33

What a beauty and blessedness there is in the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ, when viewed by the spiritual eye! Our reasoning minds, it is true, may be deeply stumbled at the doctrine of an incarnate God. My own mind, I know, has sometimes been driven almost to its wits' end by this great mystery of deity and humanity combined in the Person of Christ, for it so surpasses all human comprehension, and is so removed beyond the grasp of all our reasoning faculties. It is not, indeed, contrary to reason, for there is nothing in it impossible or self-contradictory; but it is beyond and above the reach of human thought and tangible apprehension. But when we are led to consider what would be the most certain and most fearful consequences unless the Lord Jesus Christ were what he declares he is, God as well as man, we are compelled, from the very necessity of the case, to cast ourselves with all the weight of our sins and sorrows upon an incarnate God, as the shipwrecked sailor gladly casts himself upon the rock in the ocean as the only refuge from the devouring sea.

When we feel what sinners we are, and have been, look down into the depths of the fall, and see in some feeble and faint measure what sin is in the sight of a holy and pure God, what can save us from despair unless we see the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ investing his work upon the cross and his obedience with a merit that shall suffice to justify our guilty souls, wash away our aggravated iniquities, blot out our fearful crimes, and make us fit to appear in the presence of a righteous God? Thus we are sometimes absolutely compelled to throw ourselves on the deity of Christ, as ready to perish, because in such a divine Savior, in such precious blood we see a refuge, and we see elsewhere no other.

We then feel that if the deity of Christ be taken away, the Church of God is lost. Where can you find pardon? where justification? where reconciliation to God? where atoning blood, if there is no Savior who merited as God, and suffered as man? We might as well leap into hell at once with all our sins upon our head, as a sailor might spring over the prow of a burning ship into the boiling waves, to meet death instead of waiting for it, unless we believe by a living faith in the deity of the Son of God.

But sometimes we are sweetly led into this glorious truth, not merely driven by sheer necessity, but blessedly drawn into this great mystery of godliness, when Christ is revealed to our souls by the power of God. Then, seeing light in God's light, we view the deity of Christ investing every thought, word, and act of his suffering humanity with unspeakable merit. Then we see how this glorious fact of deity and humanity in the Person of Immanuel satisfies every need, puts away every sin, heals every wound, wipes away every tear, and sweetly brings the soul to repose on the bosom of God. Sometimes, therefore, from necessity, driven by storms of guilt and waves of temptation, and sometimes sweetly drawn by the leadings and teachings of the Holy Spirit, we lay hold of the hope set before us in the essential deity and suffering humanity of the Son of God, knowing that there is a refuge in him from sin, death, hell, and despair.

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 13 Jul 2007, 07:10

July 14

"But you, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit." Jude 20

By the words "most holy faith," we may understand chiefly the grand truths of the everlasting gospel which are revealed unto and embraced by faith. And they are called "our most holy faith," because they are imbued with all the holiness of God; and not only so, but as they are received into believing hearts, communicate sanctification, because they have a liberating, sanctifying efficacy. The words "build up" assume that there is a foundation laid. Christ is that foundation which God has laid in Zion, a chief corner-stone, elect, precious; and where Christ is revealed to the soul by a divine power, a foundation is laid in the heart on which every subsequent truth is to be built up.

The grand thing to be clear of in our own experience is, whether Christ has been laid as a foundation in our souls or not, and if he has, we have been driven from every other as finding no rest or peace but in him. If ever he has been revealed to our souls by the mighty power of God, then we have seen and felt that in him there is a foundation on which we can stand, and that for eternity. As the Son of the Father in truth and love; having come to finish the work which the Father gave him to do; having put away sin by the sacrifice of himself, and brought in an everlasting righteousness in which we may stand justified, there is a foundation on which a poor, guilty soul may rest. When this foundation is brought near, and we, by the power of God's grace, are lifted up to rest upon it, we can say, "How firm a foundation, you saints of the Lord, Is laid for your faith in his excellent word."

"Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ" (1 Cor. 3:11).

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 14 Jul 2007, 10:49

July 13

"We have such an high priest, who has sat down on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens; a minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man." Hebrews 8:1, 2

Our blessed Lord was to be "a High Priest after the order of Melchizedec." It will be remembered that Melchizedec met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him (Gen. 14:19). In the same way our great High Priest blesses the seed of Abraham; for "they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham;" and as believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, they walk in his steps who "believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness."

But Melchizedec the type could only ask God to bless Abraham. He could not himself confer the blessing; but Jesus, the antitype, our great Melchizedec, whose priesthood is "after the power of an endless life," blesses his people, not by merely asking God to bless them, but by himself showering down blessings upon them, and by communicating to them out of his own fullness every grace which can sanctify as well as save.

Even before his incarnation, when he appeared in human form, as if anticipating in appearance that flesh and blood which he should afterwards assume in reality, he had power to bless. Thus we read that when Jacob wrestled with the angel, which angel was no created angel, but the Angel of the covenant, even the Son of God himself in human shape, he said, "I will not let you go except you bless me." And in answer to his wrestling cry we read that "he blessed him there." Jacob knew that no created angel could bless him. He therefore said, when he had got the blessing, "I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved." To this blessing Jacob afterwards referred when, in blessing Ephraim and Manasseh, he said, "The angel which redeemed me from all evil bless the lads." Thus, also, our gracious Lord, immediately before his ascension to heaven, as if in anticipation of the gifts and graces which he was to send down upon them when exalted to the right hand of the Father, "lifted up his hands and blessed his disciples;" and as if to show that he would still ever continue to bless them, "he was parted from them and carried up into heaven," even "while he blessed them," as if he were blessing them all the way up to heaven, even before he took possession of his mediatorial throne (Luke 24:50, 51).

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 14 Jul 2007, 21:18

July 15

"Keep yourselves in the love of God." Jude 21

When Christ is made known to our soul by the power of God, we have views of truth in him, of happiness in him, and of deliverance. "As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him." We receive him as the Son of the Father in truth and love; we receive him as suitable to our needs and woes; we receive him as putting away sin by the sacrifice of himself, and endearing himself to our heart in the sweet manifestation of his Person, goodness, and love. Now as long as Christ and the soul are together, there is no place for error, and no place for evil. He makes the soul tender, the heart upright, the spirit broken and contrite, truth precious, error hateful, and sin loathsome and detestable. And while he and the soul are engaged together, error cannot approach nor evil find an entrance, so as to get any standing-ground in the heart.

But error is very subtle; it addresses itself to our reasoning powers; and when we lose sight of Christ, then error very easily creeps in; or if not error, some special lust, or something ungodly, seems by degrees to obtain power and influence, and we gradually decline from the strength of faith, the confidence of hope, and the sweet affections of love, and drop, it may be, into a cold, carnal, careless, lifeless state, where we lie open to the invasion of error and the temptations of Satan as an angel of light or an angel of darkness.

But now Jude comes and says, "Keep yourselves in the love of God; and I will tell you, if you will listen to me, how you shall do it. You must build up yourselves on your most holy faith." God has laid a foundation for your faith in his holy word; he has laid Christ as a foundation in your own soul. That is a very strong foundation; it is of God's own laying. It is very solid; it will bear any weight laid upon it. And therefore you must build up yourselves upon that most holy faith if you would have a religion which stands; because if your religion, or any part of your religion, be built upon another foundation, it will not stand. But if you build up yourselves on your most holy faith, then everything you build upon it will stand, because it rests upon the foundation, and is in harmony with it.

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 16 Jul 2007, 05:41

July 16

"Search me, O God, and know my heart--try me, and know my thoughts--and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting." Psalm 139:23, 24

The people of God cannot take their religion upon credit; they cannot be satisfied with the endorsement of this or that good man. They must have it wrought by God himself. They are often exercised as to whence their religion came. Do you not find it so, and that it costs you many exercises? If, for instance, you are cast down, you are exercised whether it springs from godly sorrow for sin. If you are comforted, you cannot take the comfort for granted; you must have it weighed up in the gospel balance. If you meet with providential deliverances, you cannot take them as so many certain evidences that all is right with your soul. So that every step you take you have to examine, and weigh it whether it be of God.

The dead professors, the hypocrites in Zion never have their religion tried and weighed up in this way. They know nothing of these inward exercises. They take things for granted; they nestle under some good man's wing, or get their religion endorsed by some minister, and are satisfied.

But the people of God must have testimonies from the Lord himself; and they will often be sharply exercised whether they have that work in their souls which will stand in the trying hour. And if in answer to their cries the Lord is pleased to shine into their souls, and raise up clear tokens that it is from heaven, it fills their hearts with gratitude, sinks the things of time and sense, and lifts up their affections to that blessed fountain whence these testimonies came down. Thus those very things which seem against them are for them, and they derive their sweetest consolations out of their heaviest afflictions. They would not change their trying path, with all its bitter things, for the smooth flowery path in which they see thousands walk, knowing that a religion without trials and temptations will only lead the soul down into a never-ending hell.

Thus at times they can feel good spring out of their exercises, and would rather be all their days a tempted, tried people, and bear those things which God inflicts, than walk in a path which seems right in the eyes of a man, and at the end find eternal destruction. They would rather have those chastisements which prove they are children and not bastards, than walk in a flesh-pleasing way of which the end is eternal damnation.

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 17 Jul 2007, 07:05

July 17

"Then what prayer or what supplication soever shall be made of any man, or of all your people Israel, when every one shall know his own sore and his own grief, and shall spread forth his hands in this house." 2 Chronicles 6:29

Solomon comes to experience; he puts his hand upon the right spot. It is knowing his "own sore" and his "own grief." You may know another man's; that will not profit you. You may read of experience in books, love to hear experimental ministers, and will hear no others; and yet not know your "own sore," your "own grief." Like a physician who may know the symptoms of every malady, and yet not have one malady of his own; so you may hear described every symptom of every disease, and yet be untouched by one.

But the man for whom Solomon's prayer is, he that knows and feels, painfully feels, his "own sore" and his "own grief," whose heart is indeed a grief to him, whose sins do indeed trouble him. How painful this sore often is! how it runs night and day! how full of ulcerous matter, and how it shrinks from the probe! Most of the Lord's family have a "sore," each some tender spot, something perhaps known to himself and to God alone, the cause of his greatest grief. It may be some secret slip he has made, some sin he has committed, some word he has spoken, or some evil thing he has done. He has been entangled, and entrapped, and cast down; and this is his grief and his sore which he feels, and that at times deeply before God. For such Solomon prays--he casts his net upon the right side of the ship; and says, "Then hear from heaven your dwelling-place, and forgive, and render unto every man according unto all his ways, whose heart you know; for you only know the hearts of the children of men." Yes; God alone knows the heart; he knows it completely, and sees to its very bottom.

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 18 Jul 2007, 06:41

July 18

"Likewise the Spirit also helps our infirmities; for we know not what we should pray for as we ought; but the Spirit himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered." Romans 8:26


"We know not what we should pray for as we ought." How often do we find and feel this to be our case. Darkness covers our mind; ignorance pervades our soul; unbelief vexes our spirit; guilt troubles our conscience; a crowd of evil imaginations, or foolish or worse than foolish wanderings distract our thoughts; Satan hurls in thick and fast his fiery darts; a dense cloud is spread over the mercy-seat; infidelity whispers its vile suggestions, until, amid all this rabble throng, such confusion and bondage prevail that words seem idle breath, and prayer to the God of heaven but empty mockery.

In this scene of confusion and distraction, when all seems going to the wreck, how kind, how gracious is it in the blessed Spirit to come, as it were, to the rescue of the poor bewildered saint, and to teach him how to pray and what to pray for. He is therefore said "to help our infirmities," for these evils of which we have been speaking are not willful, deliberate sins, but wretched infirmities of the flesh. He helps, then, our infirmities by subduing the power and prevalence of unbelief; by commanding in the mind a solemn calm; by rebuking and chasing away Satan and his fiery darts; by awing the soul with a reverential sense of the power and presence of God; by presenting Jesus before our eyes as the Mediator at the right hand of the Father; by raising up and drawing forth faith upon his Person and work, blood and righteousness; and, above all, by himself interceding for us and in us "with groanings which cannot be uttered." When the soul is favored thus to pray, its petitions are a spiritual sacrifice, and its cries enter the ears of the Lord Almighty, for "He that searches the hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because he makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God" (Rom. 8:27; James 5:4; 1 Peter 2:5).

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 19 Jul 2007, 07:04

July 19

"Because they have no changes, therefore they fear not God." Psalm 55:19

True religion is certainly the most weighty, and yet the most mysterious matter that we ever have had or can have to do with in this world. And I will tell you this, that it will either comfort you, or it will distress you. It will either exercise your mind, trouble your soul, cast down your spirit, and make you truly miserable, or else be the source of your choicest comfort and your greatest happiness. From religion come our deepest sorrows and highest joys, the greatest uneasiness and the sweetest peace.

There is this peculiar feature about true religion, that in the greatest prosperity it may be the cause to us of the chief trouble, or in the greatest adversity be to us the cause of the purest joy. What are wealth or health, rank or titles, and every comfort the world can afford to a wounded spirit? What are poverty, sickness, persecution, contempt, a garret or a prison to a soul basking in the smiles of eternal love?

Religion will surely make itself felt wherever it exists, and will testify by its power to its presence. If, then, you are a partaker of true religion, be you who, where, or what you may, you cannot be at ease in Zion, for there will be ever something working up out of your own heart or arising from some other quarter to make you uneasy.

Job was once at ease, but he was not allowed to die in his soft nest. He therefore says, "I was at ease, but he has broken me asunder--he has also taken me by my neck, and shaken me to pieces, and set me up for his mark." And yet with all this unexpected and apparently cruel treatment, he could still say, "Behold, my witness is in heaven, and my record is on high." And though so exercised and distressed that he had to cry out, "I have been reduced to skin and bones and have escaped death by the skin of my teeth. Have mercy on me, my friends, have mercy, for the hand of God has struck me." Yet he could add, in all the confidence of faith, as desirous that his words might stand forever upon record--"Oh, that my words could be written. Oh, that they could be inscribed on a monument, carved with an iron chisel and filled with lead, engraved forever in the rock. But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, and that he will stand upon the earth at last. And after my body has decayed, yet in my body I will see God! I will see him for myself. Yes, I will see him with my own eyes. I am overwhelmed at the thought!" Job 19:23-27

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Berichtdoor J.C. Philpot » 20 Jul 2007, 09:01

July 20

"Deal bountifully with your servant, that I may live, and keep your word." Psalm 119:17

Can the Lord deal any way but bountifully with his servants? Why has he made you his servants? Why did he strike the chains of former servitude off your hands? Why did he bring you out of the service of sin, the world, Satan, and self? Why did he ever make himself precious to your heart, win your affections, and enable you to give yourselves wholly unto him? That he might cast you off? that he might mock your calamity? that he might trample you one day into hell? that he might leave you to yourself, that he might allow Satan to overcome you, permit your lusts to destroy you; or allow your sins to be tied one day, like a mill-stone, round your neck to sink you into hell?

Oh, can our heart ever indulge thoughts so derogatory to sovereign grace? Was it not because the Lord had bounty in his heart towards you, that he first turned your heart towards himself? Was it not because the Lord had purposes of love towards you, that he first led your feet into his paths? Was it not because God first loved you, that he gave his Son to die for you?

Now if he has taught you, led you, upheld you, kept you, all this time, is it to cast you off now--to let you sink at last? He cannot do so, will not do so. Those whom he loves, he loves to the end; the good work which he has begun, he will accomplish, and bring to final perfection; and therefore all the Lord's acts are acts of bounty.


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