The mountains of division

Morning

“And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost.”
Acts 2:4

Rich were the blessings of this day if all of us were filled with the Holy Ghost. The consequences of this sacred filling of the soul it would be impossible to overestimate. Life, comfort, light, purity, power, peace; and many other precious blessings are inseparable from the Spirit’s benign presence. As sacred oil, he anoints the head of the believer, sets him apart to the priesthood of saints, and gives him grace to execute his office aright. As the only truly purifying water he cleanses us from the power of sin and sanctifies us unto holiness, working in us to will and to do of the Lord’s good pleasure. As the light, he manifested to us at first our lost estate, and now he reveals the Lord Jesus to us and in us, and guides us in the way of righteousness. Enlightened by his pure celestial ray, we are no more darkness but light in the Lord. As fire, he both purges us from dross, and sets our consecrated nature on a blaze. He is the sacrificial flame by which we are enabled to offer our whole souls as a living sacrifice unto God. As heavenly dew, he removes our barrenness and fertilizes our lives. O that he would drop from above upon us at this early hour! Such morning dew would be a sweet commencement for the day. As the dove, with wings of peaceful love he broods over his Church and over the souls of believers, and as a Comforter he dispels the cares and doubts which mar the peace of his beloved. He descends upon the chosen as upon the Lord in Jordan, and bears witness to their sonship by working in them a filial spirit by which they cry Abba, Father. As the wind, he brings the breath of life to men; blowing where he listeth he performs the quickening operations by which the spiritual creation is animated and sustained. Would to God, that we might feel his presence this day and every day.

Evening

“My Beloved is mine, and I am his: he feedeth among the lilies. Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, turn, my Beloved, and be thou like a roe or a young hart upon the mountains of Bether.”
Song of Solomon 2:16-17

Surely if there be a happy verse in the Bible it is this–“My Beloved is mine, and I am his.” So peaceful, so full of assurance, so overrunning with happiness and contentment is it, that it might well have been written by the same hand which penned the twenty-third Psalm. Yet though the prospect is exceeding fair and lovely–earth cannot show its superior–it is not entirely a sunlit landscape. There is a cloud in the sky which casts a shadow over the scene. Listen, “Until the day break, and the shadows flee away.”

There is a word, too, about the “mountains of Bether,” or, “the mountains of division,” and to our love, anything like division is bitterness. Beloved, this may be your present state of mind; you do not doubt your salvation; you know that Christ is yours, but you are not feasting with him. You understand your vital interest in him, so that you have no shadow of a doubt of your being his, and of his being yours, but still his left hand is not under your head, nor doth his right hand embrace you. A shade of sadness is cast over your heart, perhaps by affliction, certainly by the temporary absence of your Lord, so even while exclaiming, “I am his,” you are forced to take to your knees, and to pray, “Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, turn, my Beloved.”

“Where is he?” asks the soul. And the answer comes, “He feedeth among the lilies.” If we would find Christ, we must get into communion with his people, we must come to the ordinances with his saints. Oh, for an evening glimpse of him! Oh, to sup with him tonight!

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Christ forgave you

Colossians 3:13

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ASK & JESUS WILL GIVE YOU DRINK

Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.

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Psalm 46:10

Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.

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GATE

Matthew 7:13-14

#3560 – The Strait Gate

Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

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Mt. 10:13

Mt. 10:13 And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you.

Storms

The whole earth will hear

God uses us

We are Christ’s ambassadors, and God is using us to speak to you.

1 Corinthians 5:20
 

Storms over Romania

WATERS OF LIFE

 

In the summer of 1990, following the overthrow of the communist regime in Romania, a number of Romanian church leaders invited me to return to the country for a preaching mission in four cities. I will long remember the first night in Timisoara. I was preaching the gospel in a stadium that had been built to promote and proclaim communism. When I gave the invitation following the message, I thought my translator, Peter, had misinterpreted what I had said and dismissed the crowd. It seemed as though everyone got up to leave. I then realized the people were not leaving, they were responding to the invitation to accept Christ!

After several nights of rich harvests, we began meetings in the city of Medias. As I was preaching, a storm approached the stadium. The wind began to blow, and I could see a huge black cloud approaching. I knelt on the platform and prayed, “Lord God, there are people in this stadium who have never heard the gospel. They may never have another opportunity. I ask that You stay the storm and allow us to continue.”

Several American businessmen in our ministry team were sitting in the top rows of the stadium that evening. They later reported that as the storm approached, it literally divided and went around the stadium. In the path of the storm, houses were destroyed, trees were uprooted, and power lines were downed. But in the stadium, we continued the service, and hundreds of people gave their lives to Christ that night. To God be all the glory!
Steve Wingfield in Live the Adventure

Adapted from The Prayer Bible Jean E. Syswerda, general editor, Tyndale House Publishers (2003), p 1593.

Digging Deeper: Read To Fly Again, the follow-up to In the Presence of My Enemies, in which Gracia Burnham reflects on the lessons and spiritual truths she learned in the jungle and how they apply to anyone’s life.

 

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

Scripture requires searching

Morning

dove2animated

“The Lord hath done great things for us, whereof we are glad.”
Psalm 126:3

Some Christians are sadly prone to look on the dark side of everything, and to dwell more upon what they have gone through than upon what God has done for them. Ask for their impression of the Christian life, and they will describe their continual conflicts, their deep afflictions, their sad adversities, and the sinfulness of their hearts, yet with scarcely any allusion to the mercy and help which God has vouchsafed them. But a Christian whose soul is in a healthy state, will come forward joyously, and say, “I will speak, not about myself, but to the honour of my God. He hath brought me up out of an horrible pit, and out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings: and he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God. The Lord hath done great things for me, whereof I am glad.” Such an abstract of experience as this is the very best that any child of God can present. It is true that we endure trials, but it is just as true that we are delivered out of them. It is true that we have our corruptions, and mournfully do we know this, but it is quite as true that we have an all-sufficient Saviour, who overcomes these corruptions, and delivers us from their dominion. In looking back, it would be wrong to deny that we have been in the Slough of Despond, and have crept along the Valley of Humiliation, but it would be equally wicked to forget that we have been through them safely and profitably; we have not remained in them, thanks to our Almighty Helper and Leader, who has brought us “out into a wealthy place.” The deeper our troubles, the louder our thanks to God, who has led us through all, and preserved us until now. Our griefs cannot mar the melody of our praise, we reckon them to be the bass part of our life’s song, “He hath done great things for us, whereof we are glad.” (Emphasis added)

Evening

ames 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much

James 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

“Search the Scriptures.”
John 5:39

The Greek word here rendered search signifies a strict, close, diligent, curious search, such as men make when they are seeking gold, or hunters when they are in earnest after game. We must not rest content with having given a superficial reading to a chapter or two, but with the candle of the Spirit we must deliberately seek out the hidden meaning of the word. Holy Scripture requires searching–much of it can only be learned by careful study. There is milk for babes, but also meat for strong men. The rabbis wisely say that a mountain of matter hangs upon every word, yea, upon every title of Scripture. Tertullian exclaims, “I adore the fulness of the Scriptures.” No man who merely skims the book of God can profit thereby; we must dig and mine until we obtain the hid treasure. The door of the word only opens to the key of diligence. The Scriptures claim searching. They are the writings of God, bearing the divine stamp and imprimatur–who shall dare to treat them with levity? He who despises them despises the God who wrote them. God forbid that any of us should leave our Bibles to become swift witnesses against us in the great day of account. The word of God will repay searching. God does not bid us sift a mountain of chaff with here and there a grain of wheat in it, but the Bible is winnowed corn–we have but to open the granary door and find it. Scripture grows upon the student. It is full of surprises. Under the teaching of the Holy Spirit, to the searching eye it glows with splendour of revelation, like a vast temple paved with wrought gold, and roofed with rubies, emeralds, and all manner of gems. No merchandise is like the merchandise of Scripture truth. Lastly, the Scriptures reveal Jesus: “They are they which testify of me.” No more powerful motive can be urged upon Bible readers than this: he who finds Jesus finds life, heaven, all things. Happy he who, searching his Bible, discovers his Saviour. (Emphasis added)

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By Faith

Ephesians 3:17-19

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That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.

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Espanol translation

de manera que Cristo more por la fe en vuestros corazones; y que arraigados y cimentados en amor, seáis capaces de comprender con todos los santos cuál es la anchura, la longitud, la altura y la profundidad, y de conocer el amor de Cristo que sobrepasa el conocimiento, para que seáis llenos hasta la medida de toda la plenitud de Dios.

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John 3:17

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For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

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Morning

“Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee.”
Psalm 55:22

Care, even though exercised upon legitimate objects, if carried to excess, has in it the nature of sin. The precept to avoid anxious care is earnestly inculcated by our Saviour, again and again; it is reiterated by the apostles; and it is one which cannot be neglected without involving transgression: for the very essence of anxious care is the imagining that we are wiser than God, and the thrusting ourselves into his place to do for him that which he has undertaken to do for us. We attempt to think of that which we fancy he will forget; we labour to take upon ourselves our weary burden, as if he were unable or unwilling to take it for us. Now this disobedience to his plain precept, this unbelief in his Word, this presumption in intruding upon his province, is all sinful. Yet more than this, anxious care often leads to acts of sin. He who cannot calmly leave his affairs in God’s hand, but will carry his own burden, is very likely to be tempted to use wrong means to help himself. This sin leads to a forsaking of God as our counsellor, and resorting instead to human wisdom. This is going to the “broken cistern” instead of to the “fountain;” a sin which was laid against Israel of old. Anxiety makes us doubt God’s lovingkindness, and thus our love to him grows cold; we feel mistrust, and thus grieve the Spirit of God, so that our prayers become hindered, our consistent example marred, and our life one of self-seeking. Thus want of confidence in God leads us to wander far from him; but if through simple faith in his promise, we cast each burden as it comes upon him, and are “careful for nothing” because he undertakes to care for us, it will keep us close to him, and strengthen us against much temptation. “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee, because he trusteth in thee.”

Evening

“Continue in the faith.”
Acts 14:22

Perseverance is the badge of true saints. The Christian life is not a beginning only in the ways of God, but also a continuance in the same as long as life lasts. It is with a Christian as it was with the great Napoleon: he said, “Conquest has made me what I am, and conquest must maintain me.” So, under God, dear brother in the Lord, conquest has made you what you are, and conquest must sustain you. Your motto must be, “Excelsior.” He only is a true conqueror, and shall be crowned at the last, who continueth till war’s trumpet is blown no more. Perseverance is, therefore, the target of all our spiritual enemies. The world does not object to your being a Christian for a time, if she can but tempt you to cease your pilgrimage, and settle down to buy and sell with her in Vanity Fair. The flesh will seek to ensnare you, and to prevent your pressing on to glory. “It is weary work being a pilgrim; come, give it up. Am I always to be mortified? Am I never to be indulged? Give me at least a furlough from this constant warfare.” Satan will make many a fierce attack on your perseverance; it will be the mark for all his arrows. He will strive to hinder you in service: he will insinuate that you are doing no good; and that you want rest. He will endeavour to make you weary of suffering, he will whisper, “Curse God, and die.” Or he will attack your steadfastness: “What is the good of being so zealous? Be quiet like the rest; sleep as do others, and let your lamp go out as the other virgins do.” Or he will assail your doctrinal sentiments: “Why do you hold to these denominational creeds? Sensible men are getting more liberal; they are removing the old landmarks: fall in with the times.” Wear your shield, Christian, therefore, close upon your armour, and cry mightily unto God, that by his Spirit you may endure to the end.

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Zephaniah 3:17

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The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.

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WORD FOR THE DAY AND READ CLOSELY – DISCERN AND SEEK THE LORD TO REVEAL TO YOU THIS DAY HIS DESIRE FOR YOUR RHEMA WORD! GOD BLESS.

2 Timothy 4:5 – But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.

2 Timothy 1:7 – For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

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

1 Peter 4:7 – But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.

PSALM 91