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The Patient Path

Published by InTouch Ministries for reading on August 9th.

1 Samuel 24:3-7 3 And he came to the sheepcotes by the way, where was a cave; and Saul went in to cover his feet. Now David and his men were abiding in the innermost parts of the cave. 4 And the men of David said unto him, Behold, the day of which Jehovah said unto thee, Behold, I will deliver thine enemy into thy hand, and thou shalt do to him as it shall seem good unto thee. Then David arose, and cut off the skirt of Saul's robe privily. 5 And it came to pass afterward, that David's heart smote him, because he had cut off Saul's skirt. 6 And he said unto his men, Jehovah forbid that I should do this thing unto my lord, Jehovah's anointed, to put forth my hand against him, seeing he is Jehovah's anointed. 7 So David checked his men with these words, and suffered them not to rise against Saul. And Saul rose up out of the cave, and went on his way. ; 26:8-11

Do you desire God’s best for your life? Unfortunately, many people miss out on blessings because they are unwilling to wait for His timing. Scripture encourages believers to be patient.

David was a good example of this virtue when he refused the use of violence to take the throne that he knew would eventually be his. King Saul—who had become envious of the shepherd’s ability, anointing, and popularity—planned to murder the young man. Twice during this time of pursuit, David had been within arm’s reach of Saul and easily able to kill his pursuer. But in both instances, he chose to wait for God’s timing. He was unwilling to take matters into his own hands, even though ending Saul’s life would have provided much relief.

Thankfully, David was patient. Notice the attributes that allowed him to wait for the Lord’s timing. First, he had strong faith and believed that God would gain victory in the right time and with the right method. Second, he had the correct values: Killing a king would violate his conscience. Third, discernment helped him realize that assassination would mean stepping out of God’s will. Fourth, strength played a role in the decision. How difficult it must have been to resist taking action that would result in freedom and possible royalty.

Patience is refined in trying times, when you’re frustrated with the waiting and tempted to act outside of God’s will. Always seek His wisdom, and follow the instruction you receive. Remember that “those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength” (Isa. 40:31).

Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 6-8 Chapter 6 1 Flee for safety, ye children of Benjamin, out of the midst of Jerusalem, and blow the trumpet in Tekoa, and raise up a signal on Beth-haccherem; for evil looketh forth from the north, and a great destruction. 2 The comely and delicate one, the daughter of Zion, will I cut off. 3 Shepherds with their flocks shall come unto her; they shall pitch their tents against her round about; they shall feed every one in his place. 4 Prepare ye war against her; arise, and let us go up at noon. Woe unto us! for the day declineth, for the shadows of the evening are stretched out. 5 Arise, and let us go up by night, and let us destroy her palaces. 6 For thus hath Jehovah of hosts said, Hew ye down trees, and cast up a mound against Jerusalem: this is the city to be visited; she is wholly oppression in the midst of her. 7 As a well casteth forth its waters, so she casteth forth her wickedness: violence and destruction is heard in her; before me continually is sickness and wounds. 8 Be thou instructed, O Jerusalem, lest my soul be alienated from thee; lest I make thee a desolation, a land not inhabited. 9 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, They shall thoroughly glean the remnant of Israel as a vine: turn again thy hand as a grape-gatherer into the baskets. 10 To whom shall I speak and testify, that they may hear? behold, their ear is uncircumcised, and they cannot hearken: behold, the word of Jehovah is become unto them a reproach; they have no delight in it. 11 Therefore I am full of the wrath of Jehovah; I am weary with holding in: pour it out upon the children in the street, and upon the assembly of young men together; for even the husband with the wife shall be taken, the aged with him that is full of days. 12 And their houses shall be turned unto others, their fields and their wives together; for I will stretch out my hand upon the inhabitants of the land, saith Jehovah. 13 For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. 14 They have healed also the hurt of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. 15 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall; at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith Jehovah. 16 Thus saith Jehovah, Stand ye in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way; and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls: but they said, We will not walk `therein'. 17 And I set watchmen over you, `saying', Hearken to the sound of the trumpet; but they said, We will not hearken. 18 Therefore hear, ye nations, and know, O congregation, what is among them. 19 Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto my words; and as for my law, they have rejected it. 20 To what purpose cometh there to me frankincense from Sheba, and the sweet cane from a far country? your burnt-offerings are not acceptable, nor your sacrifices pleasing unto me. 21 Therefore thus saith Jehovah, Behold, I will lay stumbling-blocks before this people; and the fathers and the sons together shall stumble against them; the neighbor and his friend shall perish. 22 Thus saith Jehovah, Behold, a people cometh from the north country; and a great nation shall be stirred up from the uttermost parts of the earth. 23 They lay hold on bow and spear; they are cruel, and have no mercy; their voice roareth like the sea, and they ride upon horses, every one set in array, as a man to the battle, against thee, O daughter of Zion. 24 We have heard the report thereof; our hands wax feeble: anguish hath taken hold of us, `and' pangs as of a woman in travail. 25 Go not forth into the field, nor walk by the way; for the sword of the enemy, `and' terror, are on every side. 26 O daughter of my people, gird thee with sackcloth, and wallow thyself in ashes: make thee mourning, as for an only son, most bitter lamentation; for the destroyer shall suddenly come upon us. 27 I have made thee a trier `and' a fortress among my people; that thou mayest know and try their way. 28 They are all grievous revolters, going about with slanders; they are brass and iron: they all of them deal corruptly. 29 The bellows blow fiercely; the lead is consumed of the fire: in vain do they go on refining; for the wicked are not plucked away. 30 Refuse silver shall men them, because Jehovah hath rejected them. Chapter 7 1 The word that came to Jeremiah from Jehovah, saying, 2 Stand in the gate of Jehovah's house, and proclaim there this word, and say, Hear the word of Jehovah, all ye of Judah, that enter in at these gates to worship Jehovah. 3 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place. 4 Trust ye not in lying words, saying, The temple of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah, are these. 5 For if ye thoroughly amend your ways and your doings; if ye thoroughly execute justice between a man and his neighbor; 6 if ye oppress not the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow, and shed not innocent blood in this place, neither walk after other gods to your own hurt: 7 then will I cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, from of old even for evermore. 8 Behold, ye trust in lying words, that cannot profit. 9 Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other gods that ye have not known, 10 and come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, We are delivered; that ye may do all these abominations? 11 Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, I, even I, have seen it, saith Jehovah. 12 But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I caused my name to dwell at the first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel. 13 And now, because ye have done all these works, saith Jehovah, and I spake unto you, rising up early and speaking, but ye heard not; and I called you, but ye answered not: 14 therefore will I do unto the house which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, as I did to Shiloh. 15 And I will cast you out of my sight, as I have cast out all your brethren, even the whole seed of Ephraim. 16 Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me; for I will not hear thee. 17 Seest thou not what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 18 The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead the dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink-offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger. 19 Do they provoke me to anger? saith Jehovah; `do they' not `provoke' themselves, to the confusion of their own faces? 20 Therefore thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Behold, mine anger and my wrath shall be poured out upon this place, upon man, and upon beast, and upon the trees of the field, and upon the fruit of the ground; and it shall burn, and shall not be quenched. 21 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel: Add your burnt-offerings unto your sacrifices, and eat ye flesh. 22 For I spake not unto your fathers, nor commanded them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt-offerings or sacrifices: 23 but this thing I commanded them, saying, Hearken unto my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people; and walk ye in all the way that I command you, that it may be well with you. 24 But they hearkened not, nor inclined their ear, but walked in `their own' counsels `and' in the stubbornness of their evil heart, and went backward, and not forward. 25 Since the day that your fathers came forth out of the land of Egypt unto this day, I have sent unto you all my servants the prophets, daily rising up early and sending them: 26 yet they hearkened not unto me, nor inclined their ear, but made their neck stiff: they did worse than their fathers. 27 And thou shalt speak all these words unto them; but they will not hearken to thee: thou shalt also call unto them; but they will not answer thee. 28 And thou shalt say unto them, This is the nation that hath not hearkened to the voice of Jehovah their God, nor received instruction: truth is perished, and is cut off from their mouth. 29 Cut off thy hair, `O Jerusalem', and cast it away, and take up a lamentation on the bare heights; for Jehovah hath rejected and forsaken the generation of his wrath. 30 For the children of Judah have done that which is evil in my sight, saith Jehovah: they have set their abominations in the house which is called by my name, to defile it. 31 And they have built the high places of Topheth, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire; which I commanded not, neither came it into my mind. 32 Therefore, behold, the days come, saith Jehovah, that it shall no more be called Topheth, nor The valley of the son of Hinnom, but The valley of Slaughter: for they shall bury in Topheth, till there be no place `to bury'. 33 And the dead bodies of this people shall be food for the birds of the heavens, and for the beasts of the earth; and none shall frighten them away. 34 Then will I cause to cease from the cities of Judah, and from the streets of Jerusalem, the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride; for the land shall become a waste. Chapter 8 1 At that time, saith Jehovah, they shall bring out the bones of the kings of Judah, and the bones of his princes, and the bones of the priests, and the bones of the prophets, and the bones of the inhabitants of Jerusalem, out of their graves; 2 and they shall spread them before the sun, and the moon, and all the host of heaven, which they have loved, and which they have served, and after which they have walked, and which they have sought, and which they have worshipped: they shall not be gathered, nor be buried, they shall be for dung upon the face of the earth. 3 And death shall be chosen rather than life by all the residue that remain of this evil family, that remain in all the places whither I have driven them, saith Jehovah of hosts. 4 Moreover thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith Jehovah: Shall men fall, and not rise up again? Shall one turn away, and not return? 5 Why then is this people of Jerusalem slidden back by a perpetual backsliding? they hold fast deceit, they refuse to return. 6 I hearkened and heard, but they spake not aright: no man repenteth him of his wickedness, saying, What have I done? every one turneth to his course, as a horse that rusheth headlong in the battle. 7 Yea, the stork in the heavens knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle-dove and the swallow and the crane observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the law of Jehovah. 8 How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of Jehovah is with us? But, behold, the false pen of the scribes hath wrought falsely. 9 The wise men are put to shame, they are dismayed and taken: lo, they have rejected the word of Jehovah; and what manner of wisdom is in them? 10 Therefore will I give their wives unto others, and their fields to them that shall possess them: for every one from the least even unto the greatest is given to covetousness; from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. 11 And they have healed the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. 12 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore shall they fall among them that fall; in the time of their visitation they shall be cast down, saith Jehovah. 13 I will utterly consume them, saith Jehovah: there shall be no grapes on the vine, nor figs on the fig-tree, and the leaf shall fade; and `the things that' I have given them shall pass away from them. 14 Why do we sit still? assemble yourselves, and let us enter into the fortified cities, and let us be silent there; for Jehovah our God hath put us to silence, and given us water of gall to drink, because we have sinned against Jehovah. 15 We looked for peace, but no good came; `and' for a time of healing, and, behold, dismay! 16 The snorting of his horses is heard from Dan: at the sound of the neighing of his strong ones the whole land trembleth; for they are come, and have devoured the land and all that is in it; the city and those that dwell therein. 17 For, behold, I will send serpents, adders, among you, which will not be charmed; and they shall bite you, saith Jehovah. 18 Oh that I could comfort myself against sorrow! my heart is faint within me. 19 Behold, the voice of the cry of the daughter of my people from a land that is very far off: is not Jehovah in Zion? is not her King in her? Why have they provoked me to anger with their graven images, and with foreign vanities? 20 The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. 21 For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt: I mourn; dismay hath taken hold on me. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead? is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?




Expressing Gratitude to God

Published by InTouch Ministries for reading on August 9th.

Psalms 100:1-5 Chapter 100 1 Make a joyful noise unto Jehovah, all ye lands. 2 Serve Jehovah with gladness: Come before his presence with singing. 3 Know ye that Jehovah, he is God: It is he that hath made us, and we are his; We are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. 4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, And into his courts with praise: Give thanks unto him, and bless his name. 5 For Jehovah is good; his lovingkindness `endureth' for ever, And his faithfulness unto all generations. Psalm 101 A Psalm of David.

If you’re a Christian, you probably know that thanking the Lord for His blessings is an important aspect of your relationship with Him. But have you ever considered the different ways this can be done? Gratitude isn’t limited to verbal expressions or prayers but can actually be demonstrated in a variety of ways.

In the Psalms, one of the most frequently mentioned methods of conveying thanks is by singing. Songs can often say what our heart feels but has trouble articulating. As the words from our favorite hymns or praise songs flow from our lips, we are reminded of who God is and the magnitude of His salvation and love for us. And singing isn’t reserved just for church. When we’re filled with gratitude, we may find ourselves humming or singing songs that magnify the Lord wherever we are.

Another way to express gratefulness is by serving God—whether through acts of kindness, teaching Sunday school or Bible study, organizing a ministry, reaching out to marginalized people, sharing the gospel with the lost, helping someone in need, or giving financially. Every one of these can be offered to God with an attitude of thanksgiving for all He’s done for us.

Ultimately, we show the Lord our gratitude through obedience. A holy life flows from a heart filled with thankfulness for God’s grace, mercy, love, and salvation. Instead of living for ourselves and our own pleasures, we’ll want to exalt Christ in all that we do, say, and think. And as we allow God’s Spirit to control us, He will faithfully enable us to live in a manner that is pleasing and honoring to the Lord.

Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 6-8 Chapter 6 1 Flee for safety, ye children of Benjamin, out of the midst of Jerusalem, and blow the trumpet in Tekoa, and raise up a signal on Beth-haccherem; for evil looketh forth from the north, and a great destruction. 2 The comely and delicate one, the daughter of Zion, will I cut off. 3 Shepherds with their flocks shall come unto her; they shall pitch their tents against her round about; they shall feed every one in his place. 4 Prepare ye war against her; arise, and let us go up at noon. Woe unto us! for the day declineth, for the shadows of the evening are stretched out. 5 Arise, and let us go up by night, and let us destroy her palaces. 6 For thus hath Jehovah of hosts said, Hew ye down trees, and cast up a mound against Jerusalem: this is the city to be visited; she is wholly oppression in the midst of her. 7 As a well casteth forth its waters, so she casteth forth her wickedness: violence and destruction is heard in her; before me continually is sickness and wounds. 8 Be thou instructed, O Jerusalem, lest my soul be alienated from thee; lest I make thee a desolation, a land not inhabited. 9 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, They shall thoroughly glean the remnant of Israel as a vine: turn again thy hand as a grape-gatherer into the baskets. 10 To whom shall I speak and testify, that they may hear? behold, their ear is uncircumcised, and they cannot hearken: behold, the word of Jehovah is become unto them a reproach; they have no delight in it. 11 Therefore I am full of the wrath of Jehovah; I am weary with holding in: pour it out upon the children in the street, and upon the assembly of young men together; for even the husband with the wife shall be taken, the aged with him that is full of days. 12 And their houses shall be turned unto others, their fields and their wives together; for I will stretch out my hand upon the inhabitants of the land, saith Jehovah. 13 For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. 14 They have healed also the hurt of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. 15 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall; at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith Jehovah. 16 Thus saith Jehovah, Stand ye in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way; and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls: but they said, We will not walk `therein'. 17 And I set watchmen over you, `saying', Hearken to the sound of the trumpet; but they said, We will not hearken. 18 Therefore hear, ye nations, and know, O congregation, what is among them. 19 Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto my words; and as for my law, they have rejected it. 20 To what purpose cometh there to me frankincense from Sheba, and the sweet cane from a far country? your burnt-offerings are not acceptable, nor your sacrifices pleasing unto me. 21 Therefore thus saith Jehovah, Behold, I will lay stumbling-blocks before this people; and the fathers and the sons together shall stumble against them; the neighbor and his friend shall perish. 22 Thus saith Jehovah, Behold, a people cometh from the north country; and a great nation shall be stirred up from the uttermost parts of the earth. 23 They lay hold on bow and spear; they are cruel, and have no mercy; their voice roareth like the sea, and they ride upon horses, every one set in array, as a man to the battle, against thee, O daughter of Zion. 24 We have heard the report thereof; our hands wax feeble: anguish hath taken hold of us, `and' pangs as of a woman in travail. 25 Go not forth into the field, nor walk by the way; for the sword of the enemy, `and' terror, are on every side. 26 O daughter of my people, gird thee with sackcloth, and wallow thyself in ashes: make thee mourning, as for an only son, most bitter lamentation; for the destroyer shall suddenly come upon us. 27 I have made thee a trier `and' a fortress among my people; that thou mayest know and try their way. 28 They are all grievous revolters, going about with slanders; they are brass and iron: they all of them deal corruptly. 29 The bellows blow fiercely; the lead is consumed of the fire: in vain do they go on refining; for the wicked are not plucked away. 30 Refuse silver shall men them, because Jehovah hath rejected them. Chapter 7 1 The word that came to Jeremiah from Jehovah, saying, 2 Stand in the gate of Jehovah's house, and proclaim there this word, and say, Hear the word of Jehovah, all ye of Judah, that enter in at these gates to worship Jehovah. 3 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place. 4 Trust ye not in lying words, saying, The temple of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah, are these. 5 For if ye thoroughly amend your ways and your doings; if ye thoroughly execute justice between a man and his neighbor; 6 if ye oppress not the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow, and shed not innocent blood in this place, neither walk after other gods to your own hurt: 7 then will I cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, from of old even for evermore. 8 Behold, ye trust in lying words, that cannot profit. 9 Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other gods that ye have not known, 10 and come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, We are delivered; that ye may do all these abominations? 11 Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, I, even I, have seen it, saith Jehovah. 12 But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I caused my name to dwell at the first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel. 13 And now, because ye have done all these works, saith Jehovah, and I spake unto you, rising up early and speaking, but ye heard not; and I called you, but ye answered not: 14 therefore will I do unto the house which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, as I did to Shiloh. 15 And I will cast you out of my sight, as I have cast out all your brethren, even the whole seed of Ephraim. 16 Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me; for I will not hear thee. 17 Seest thou not what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 18 The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead the dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink-offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger. 19 Do they provoke me to anger? saith Jehovah; `do they' not `provoke' themselves, to the confusion of their own faces? 20 Therefore thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Behold, mine anger and my wrath shall be poured out upon this place, upon man, and upon beast, and upon the trees of the field, and upon the fruit of the ground; and it shall burn, and shall not be quenched. 21 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel: Add your burnt-offerings unto your sacrifices, and eat ye flesh. 22 For I spake not unto your fathers, nor commanded them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt-offerings or sacrifices: 23 but this thing I commanded them, saying, Hearken unto my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people; and walk ye in all the way that I command you, that it may be well with you. 24 But they hearkened not, nor inclined their ear, but walked in `their own' counsels `and' in the stubbornness of their evil heart, and went backward, and not forward. 25 Since the day that your fathers came forth out of the land of Egypt unto this day, I have sent unto you all my servants the prophets, daily rising up early and sending them: 26 yet they hearkened not unto me, nor inclined their ear, but made their neck stiff: they did worse than their fathers. 27 And thou shalt speak all these words unto them; but they will not hearken to thee: thou shalt also call unto them; but they will not answer thee. 28 And thou shalt say unto them, This is the nation that hath not hearkened to the voice of Jehovah their God, nor received instruction: truth is perished, and is cut off from their mouth. 29 Cut off thy hair, `O Jerusalem', and cast it away, and take up a lamentation on the bare heights; for Jehovah hath rejected and forsaken the generation of his wrath. 30 For the children of Judah have done that which is evil in my sight, saith Jehovah: they have set their abominations in the house which is called by my name, to defile it. 31 And they have built the high places of Topheth, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire; which I commanded not, neither came it into my mind. 32 Therefore, behold, the days come, saith Jehovah, that it shall no more be called Topheth, nor The valley of the son of Hinnom, but The valley of Slaughter: for they shall bury in Topheth, till there be no place `to bury'. 33 And the dead bodies of this people shall be food for the birds of the heavens, and for the beasts of the earth; and none shall frighten them away. 34 Then will I cause to cease from the cities of Judah, and from the streets of Jerusalem, the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride; for the land shall become a waste. Chapter 8 1 At that time, saith Jehovah, they shall bring out the bones of the kings of Judah, and the bones of his princes, and the bones of the priests, and the bones of the prophets, and the bones of the inhabitants of Jerusalem, out of their graves; 2 and they shall spread them before the sun, and the moon, and all the host of heaven, which they have loved, and which they have served, and after which they have walked, and which they have sought, and which they have worshipped: they shall not be gathered, nor be buried, they shall be for dung upon the face of the earth. 3 And death shall be chosen rather than life by all the residue that remain of this evil family, that remain in all the places whither I have driven them, saith Jehovah of hosts. 4 Moreover thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith Jehovah: Shall men fall, and not rise up again? Shall one turn away, and not return? 5 Why then is this people of Jerusalem slidden back by a perpetual backsliding? they hold fast deceit, they refuse to return. 6 I hearkened and heard, but they spake not aright: no man repenteth him of his wickedness, saying, What have I done? every one turneth to his course, as a horse that rusheth headlong in the battle. 7 Yea, the stork in the heavens knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle-dove and the swallow and the crane observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the law of Jehovah. 8 How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of Jehovah is with us? But, behold, the false pen of the scribes hath wrought falsely. 9 The wise men are put to shame, they are dismayed and taken: lo, they have rejected the word of Jehovah; and what manner of wisdom is in them? 10 Therefore will I give their wives unto others, and their fields to them that shall possess them: for every one from the least even unto the greatest is given to covetousness; from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. 11 And they have healed the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. 12 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore shall they fall among them that fall; in the time of their visitation they shall be cast down, saith Jehovah. 13 I will utterly consume them, saith Jehovah: there shall be no grapes on the vine, nor figs on the fig-tree, and the leaf shall fade; and `the things that' I have given them shall pass away from them. 14 Why do we sit still? assemble yourselves, and let us enter into the fortified cities, and let us be silent there; for Jehovah our God hath put us to silence, and given us water of gall to drink, because we have sinned against Jehovah. 15 We looked for peace, but no good came; `and' for a time of healing, and, behold, dismay! 16 The snorting of his horses is heard from Dan: at the sound of the neighing of his strong ones the whole land trembleth; for they are come, and have devoured the land and all that is in it; the city and those that dwell therein. 17 For, behold, I will send serpents, adders, among you, which will not be charmed; and they shall bite you, saith Jehovah. 18 Oh that I could comfort myself against sorrow! my heart is faint within me. 19 Behold, the voice of the cry of the daughter of my people from a land that is very far off: is not Jehovah in Zion? is not her King in her? Why have they provoked me to anger with their graven images, and with foreign vanities? 20 The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. 21 For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt: I mourn; dismay hath taken hold on me. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead? is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?




The Believer’s Highest Honor

Published by InTouch Ministries for reading on August 10th.

John 12:24-26 24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a grain of wheat fall into the earth and die, it abideth by itself alone; but if it die, it beareth much fruit. 25 He that loveth his life loseth it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal. 26 If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will the Father honor.

I’ll never forget the best introduction I’ve ever received as an invited speaker. The presenter simply said, “It is my great pleasure to introduce to you my brother, Charles Stanley, servant of the Most High God.” I couldn’t move from my seat for a few moments; I was so struck by this opening that glorified the Lord and identified my proper position.

The Word of God describes believers as ambassadors ( 2 Corinthians 5:20 20 We are ambassadors therefore on behalf of Christ, as though God were entreating by us: we beseech `you' on behalf of Christ, be ye reconciled to God. ), soldiers (2 Tim. 2:3), and saints (Eph. 2:19). But the highest honor that we can receive is to be called servants of the Most High God. From the world’s perspective, those who die to self in order to follow the Lord may stand in last place—in reality, however, they are first in His kingdom. (See Matt. 20:16.)

Sadly, service to God is often equated solely with what goes on at church. The preacher serves. The choir serves. The worker in the soup kitchen serves. But the guy pushing papers and the woman cleaning up others’ messes tend to be seen as simply doing their jobs. From the Father’s vantage point, though, work well done brings as much glory to His name as a song lifted in praise. (See Col. 3:23-24.) So take heart—if you’re doing quality work and striving to make an impact on those around you, then you are serving God.

Service to the Lord is not about what we do, but rather how well we do all that the Lord has given us to accomplish ( 1 Peter 4:10 10 according as each hath received a gift, ministering it among yourselves, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God; ). A good servant shares both Jesus Christ’s attitude of humility and His motivation to reach people with the love of God.

Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 6-8 Chapter 6 1 Flee for safety, ye children of Benjamin, out of the midst of Jerusalem, and blow the trumpet in Tekoa, and raise up a signal on Beth-haccherem; for evil looketh forth from the north, and a great destruction. 2 The comely and delicate one, the daughter of Zion, will I cut off. 3 Shepherds with their flocks shall come unto her; they shall pitch their tents against her round about; they shall feed every one in his place. 4 Prepare ye war against her; arise, and let us go up at noon. Woe unto us! for the day declineth, for the shadows of the evening are stretched out. 5 Arise, and let us go up by night, and let us destroy her palaces. 6 For thus hath Jehovah of hosts said, Hew ye down trees, and cast up a mound against Jerusalem: this is the city to be visited; she is wholly oppression in the midst of her. 7 As a well casteth forth its waters, so she casteth forth her wickedness: violence and destruction is heard in her; before me continually is sickness and wounds. 8 Be thou instructed, O Jerusalem, lest my soul be alienated from thee; lest I make thee a desolation, a land not inhabited. 9 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, They shall thoroughly glean the remnant of Israel as a vine: turn again thy hand as a grape-gatherer into the baskets. 10 To whom shall I speak and testify, that they may hear? behold, their ear is uncircumcised, and they cannot hearken: behold, the word of Jehovah is become unto them a reproach; they have no delight in it. 11 Therefore I am full of the wrath of Jehovah; I am weary with holding in: pour it out upon the children in the street, and upon the assembly of young men together; for even the husband with the wife shall be taken, the aged with him that is full of days. 12 And their houses shall be turned unto others, their fields and their wives together; for I will stretch out my hand upon the inhabitants of the land, saith Jehovah. 13 For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. 14 They have healed also the hurt of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. 15 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall; at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith Jehovah. 16 Thus saith Jehovah, Stand ye in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way; and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls: but they said, We will not walk `therein'. 17 And I set watchmen over you, `saying', Hearken to the sound of the trumpet; but they said, We will not hearken. 18 Therefore hear, ye nations, and know, O congregation, what is among them. 19 Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto my words; and as for my law, they have rejected it. 20 To what purpose cometh there to me frankincense from Sheba, and the sweet cane from a far country? your burnt-offerings are not acceptable, nor your sacrifices pleasing unto me. 21 Therefore thus saith Jehovah, Behold, I will lay stumbling-blocks before this people; and the fathers and the sons together shall stumble against them; the neighbor and his friend shall perish. 22 Thus saith Jehovah, Behold, a people cometh from the north country; and a great nation shall be stirred up from the uttermost parts of the earth. 23 They lay hold on bow and spear; they are cruel, and have no mercy; their voice roareth like the sea, and they ride upon horses, every one set in array, as a man to the battle, against thee, O daughter of Zion. 24 We have heard the report thereof; our hands wax feeble: anguish hath taken hold of us, `and' pangs as of a woman in travail. 25 Go not forth into the field, nor walk by the way; for the sword of the enemy, `and' terror, are on every side. 26 O daughter of my people, gird thee with sackcloth, and wallow thyself in ashes: make thee mourning, as for an only son, most bitter lamentation; for the destroyer shall suddenly come upon us. 27 I have made thee a trier `and' a fortress among my people; that thou mayest know and try their way. 28 They are all grievous revolters, going about with slanders; they are brass and iron: they all of them deal corruptly. 29 The bellows blow fiercely; the lead is consumed of the fire: in vain do they go on refining; for the wicked are not plucked away. 30 Refuse silver shall men them, because Jehovah hath rejected them. Chapter 7 1 The word that came to Jeremiah from Jehovah, saying, 2 Stand in the gate of Jehovah's house, and proclaim there this word, and say, Hear the word of Jehovah, all ye of Judah, that enter in at these gates to worship Jehovah. 3 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place. 4 Trust ye not in lying words, saying, The temple of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah, are these. 5 For if ye thoroughly amend your ways and your doings; if ye thoroughly execute justice between a man and his neighbor; 6 if ye oppress not the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow, and shed not innocent blood in this place, neither walk after other gods to your own hurt: 7 then will I cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, from of old even for evermore. 8 Behold, ye trust in lying words, that cannot profit. 9 Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other gods that ye have not known, 10 and come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, We are delivered; that ye may do all these abominations? 11 Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, I, even I, have seen it, saith Jehovah. 12 But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I caused my name to dwell at the first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel. 13 And now, because ye have done all these works, saith Jehovah, and I spake unto you, rising up early and speaking, but ye heard not; and I called you, but ye answered not: 14 therefore will I do unto the house which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, as I did to Shiloh. 15 And I will cast you out of my sight, as I have cast out all your brethren, even the whole seed of Ephraim. 16 Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me; for I will not hear thee. 17 Seest thou not what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 18 The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead the dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink-offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger. 19 Do they provoke me to anger? saith Jehovah; `do they' not `provoke' themselves, to the confusion of their own faces? 20 Therefore thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Behold, mine anger and my wrath shall be poured out upon this place, upon man, and upon beast, and upon the trees of the field, and upon the fruit of the ground; and it shall burn, and shall not be quenched. 21 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel: Add your burnt-offerings unto your sacrifices, and eat ye flesh. 22 For I spake not unto your fathers, nor commanded them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt-offerings or sacrifices: 23 but this thing I commanded them, saying, Hearken unto my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people; and walk ye in all the way that I command you, that it may be well with you. 24 But they hearkened not, nor inclined their ear, but walked in `their own' counsels `and' in the stubbornness of their evil heart, and went backward, and not forward. 25 Since the day that your fathers came forth out of the land of Egypt unto this day, I have sent unto you all my servants the prophets, daily rising up early and sending them: 26 yet they hearkened not unto me, nor inclined their ear, but made their neck stiff: they did worse than their fathers. 27 And thou shalt speak all these words unto them; but they will not hearken to thee: thou shalt also call unto them; but they will not answer thee. 28 And thou shalt say unto them, This is the nation that hath not hearkened to the voice of Jehovah their God, nor received instruction: truth is perished, and is cut off from their mouth. 29 Cut off thy hair, `O Jerusalem', and cast it away, and take up a lamentation on the bare heights; for Jehovah hath rejected and forsaken the generation of his wrath. 30 For the children of Judah have done that which is evil in my sight, saith Jehovah: they have set their abominations in the house which is called by my name, to defile it. 31 And they have built the high places of Topheth, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire; which I commanded not, neither came it into my mind. 32 Therefore, behold, the days come, saith Jehovah, that it shall no more be called Topheth, nor The valley of the son of Hinnom, but The valley of Slaughter: for they shall bury in Topheth, till there be no place `to bury'. 33 And the dead bodies of this people shall be food for the birds of the heavens, and for the beasts of the earth; and none shall frighten them away. 34 Then will I cause to cease from the cities of Judah, and from the streets of Jerusalem, the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride; for the land shall become a waste. Chapter 8 1 At that time, saith Jehovah, they shall bring out the bones of the kings of Judah, and the bones of his princes, and the bones of the priests, and the bones of the prophets, and the bones of the inhabitants of Jerusalem, out of their graves; 2 and they shall spread them before the sun, and the moon, and all the host of heaven, which they have loved, and which they have served, and after which they have walked, and which they have sought, and which they have worshipped: they shall not be gathered, nor be buried, they shall be for dung upon the face of the earth. 3 And death shall be chosen rather than life by all the residue that remain of this evil family, that remain in all the places whither I have driven them, saith Jehovah of hosts. 4 Moreover thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith Jehovah: Shall men fall, and not rise up again? Shall one turn away, and not return? 5 Why then is this people of Jerusalem slidden back by a perpetual backsliding? they hold fast deceit, they refuse to return. 6 I hearkened and heard, but they spake not aright: no man repenteth him of his wickedness, saying, What have I done? every one turneth to his course, as a horse that rusheth headlong in the battle. 7 Yea, the stork in the heavens knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle-dove and the swallow and the crane observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the law of Jehovah. 8 How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of Jehovah is with us? But, behold, the false pen of the scribes hath wrought falsely. 9 The wise men are put to shame, they are dismayed and taken: lo, they have rejected the word of Jehovah; and what manner of wisdom is in them? 10 Therefore will I give their wives unto others, and their fields to them that shall possess them: for every one from the least even unto the greatest is given to covetousness; from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. 11 And they have healed the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. 12 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore shall they fall among them that fall; in the time of their visitation they shall be cast down, saith Jehovah. 13 I will utterly consume them, saith Jehovah: there shall be no grapes on the vine, nor figs on the fig-tree, and the leaf shall fade; and `the things that' I have given them shall pass away from them. 14 Why do we sit still? assemble yourselves, and let us enter into the fortified cities, and let us be silent there; for Jehovah our God hath put us to silence, and given us water of gall to drink, because we have sinned against Jehovah. 15 We looked for peace, but no good came; `and' for a time of healing, and, behold, dismay! 16 The snorting of his horses is heard from Dan: at the sound of the neighing of his strong ones the whole land trembleth; for they are come, and have devoured the land and all that is in it; the city and those that dwell therein. 17 For, behold, I will send serpents, adders, among you, which will not be charmed; and they shall bite you, saith Jehovah. 18 Oh that I could comfort myself against sorrow! my heart is faint within me. 19 Behold, the voice of the cry of the daughter of my people from a land that is very far off: is not Jehovah in Zion? is not her King in her? Why have they provoked me to anger with their graven images, and with foreign vanities? 20 The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. 21 For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt: I mourn; dismay hath taken hold on me. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead? is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?




Have Mercy on Me, O God

Published by John Piper for reading on August 10th.

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. ( Psalms 51:1 Chapter 51 1 Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: According to the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. )

Three times: “Have mercy,” “according to your steadfast love,” and “according to your abundant mercy.”

This is what God had promised in Exodus 34:6 6 And Jehovah passed by before him, and proclaimed, Jehovah, Jehovah, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abundant in lovingkindness and truth, –7:

“The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty.”

David knew that there were guilty who would not be forgiven. And there were guilty who by some mysterious work of redemption would not be counted as guilty, but would be forgiven. Psalms 51 Chapter 51 1 Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: According to the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. 2 Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, And cleanse me from my sin. 3 For I know my transgressions; And my sin is ever before me. 4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, And done that which is evil in thy sight; That thou mayest be justified when thou speakest, And be clear when thou judgest. 5 Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity; And in sin did my mother conceive me. 6 Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts; And in the hidden part thou wilt make me to know wisdom. 7 Purify me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. 8 Make me to hear joy and gladness, That the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. 9 Hide thy face from my sins, And blot out all mine iniquities. 10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; And renew a right spirit within me. 11 Cast me not away from thy presence; And take not thy holy Spirit from me. 12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; And uphold me with a willing spirit. 13 Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; And sinners shall be converted unto thee. 14 Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation; `And' my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness. 15 O Lord, open thou my lips; And my mouth shall show forth thy praise. 16 For thou delightest not in sacrifice; else would I give it: Thou hast no pleasure in burnt-offering. 17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: A broken and contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. 18 Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion: Build thou the walls of Jerusalem. 19 Then will thou delight in the sacrifices of righteousness, In burnt-offering and in whole burnt-offering: Then will they offer bullocks upon thine altar. Psalm 52 For the Chief Musician. Maschil of David; when Doeg the Edomite came and told Saul, and said unto him, David is come to the house of Abimelech. is his way of laying hold on that mystery of mercy.

We know more of the mystery of this redemption than David did. We know Christ. But we lay hold of the mercy in the same way he did.

The first thing he does is turn helpless to the mercy and love of God. Today that means turning helpless to Christ.



God’s Purpose in Difficult Times

Published by InTouch Ministries for reading on August 10th.

Romans 8:28-29 28 And we know that to them that love God all things work together for good, `even' to them that are called according to `his' purpose. 29 For whom he foreknew, he also foreordained `to be' conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren:

If we could design an ideal life, most of us would skip over times of hardship. But Scripture teaches us that God has a purpose in the storms of life.

Cleansing. When problems press in on us, ungodly attitudes and habits tend to surface in our lives. Impatient behavior, a quick temper, or reliance on something or someone other than the Lord may become apparent. In a crisis, the bad habits we previously ignored can show up in ways that are too obvious to overlook. The Holy Spirit will use tough times to smooth away our rough edges and produce the fruit of the Spirit in us. (See Gal. 5:22-23.)

Companionship. When life is good, we may spend less time with the Lord and start taking our relationship with Him for granted. We may even drift off His chosen path. Crises help us see our need for Him as well as our inability to help ourselves. Hard times bring us to our knees in prayer and drive us to seek opportunities for His companionship.

Our heavenly Father’s desire is for us to develop Christlike character and grow in intimacy with Him. He wants us to experience the richness of His love and wholeheartedly show Him devotion. He will use trials and difficulties to accomplish His good purposes for us.

Life brings trouble to us from many sources. But the common thread in all trials is the Lord’s desire and ability to use them for our good and His glory. Through these experiences, we can let go of ungodly traits and experience sweet communion as we walk in intimacy with Him.

Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 6-8 Chapter 6 1 Flee for safety, ye children of Benjamin, out of the midst of Jerusalem, and blow the trumpet in Tekoa, and raise up a signal on Beth-haccherem; for evil looketh forth from the north, and a great destruction. 2 The comely and delicate one, the daughter of Zion, will I cut off. 3 Shepherds with their flocks shall come unto her; they shall pitch their tents against her round about; they shall feed every one in his place. 4 Prepare ye war against her; arise, and let us go up at noon. Woe unto us! for the day declineth, for the shadows of the evening are stretched out. 5 Arise, and let us go up by night, and let us destroy her palaces. 6 For thus hath Jehovah of hosts said, Hew ye down trees, and cast up a mound against Jerusalem: this is the city to be visited; she is wholly oppression in the midst of her. 7 As a well casteth forth its waters, so she casteth forth her wickedness: violence and destruction is heard in her; before me continually is sickness and wounds. 8 Be thou instructed, O Jerusalem, lest my soul be alienated from thee; lest I make thee a desolation, a land not inhabited. 9 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, They shall thoroughly glean the remnant of Israel as a vine: turn again thy hand as a grape-gatherer into the baskets. 10 To whom shall I speak and testify, that they may hear? behold, their ear is uncircumcised, and they cannot hearken: behold, the word of Jehovah is become unto them a reproach; they have no delight in it. 11 Therefore I am full of the wrath of Jehovah; I am weary with holding in: pour it out upon the children in the street, and upon the assembly of young men together; for even the husband with the wife shall be taken, the aged with him that is full of days. 12 And their houses shall be turned unto others, their fields and their wives together; for I will stretch out my hand upon the inhabitants of the land, saith Jehovah. 13 For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. 14 They have healed also the hurt of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. 15 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall; at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith Jehovah. 16 Thus saith Jehovah, Stand ye in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way; and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls: but they said, We will not walk `therein'. 17 And I set watchmen over you, `saying', Hearken to the sound of the trumpet; but they said, We will not hearken. 18 Therefore hear, ye nations, and know, O congregation, what is among them. 19 Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto my words; and as for my law, they have rejected it. 20 To what purpose cometh there to me frankincense from Sheba, and the sweet cane from a far country? your burnt-offerings are not acceptable, nor your sacrifices pleasing unto me. 21 Therefore thus saith Jehovah, Behold, I will lay stumbling-blocks before this people; and the fathers and the sons together shall stumble against them; the neighbor and his friend shall perish. 22 Thus saith Jehovah, Behold, a people cometh from the north country; and a great nation shall be stirred up from the uttermost parts of the earth. 23 They lay hold on bow and spear; they are cruel, and have no mercy; their voice roareth like the sea, and they ride upon horses, every one set in array, as a man to the battle, against thee, O daughter of Zion. 24 We have heard the report thereof; our hands wax feeble: anguish hath taken hold of us, `and' pangs as of a woman in travail. 25 Go not forth into the field, nor walk by the way; for the sword of the enemy, `and' terror, are on every side. 26 O daughter of my people, gird thee with sackcloth, and wallow thyself in ashes: make thee mourning, as for an only son, most bitter lamentation; for the destroyer shall suddenly come upon us. 27 I have made thee a trier `and' a fortress among my people; that thou mayest know and try their way. 28 They are all grievous revolters, going about with slanders; they are brass and iron: they all of them deal corruptly. 29 The bellows blow fiercely; the lead is consumed of the fire: in vain do they go on refining; for the wicked are not plucked away. 30 Refuse silver shall men them, because Jehovah hath rejected them. Chapter 7 1 The word that came to Jeremiah from Jehovah, saying, 2 Stand in the gate of Jehovah's house, and proclaim there this word, and say, Hear the word of Jehovah, all ye of Judah, that enter in at these gates to worship Jehovah. 3 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place. 4 Trust ye not in lying words, saying, The temple of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah, are these. 5 For if ye thoroughly amend your ways and your doings; if ye thoroughly execute justice between a man and his neighbor; 6 if ye oppress not the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow, and shed not innocent blood in this place, neither walk after other gods to your own hurt: 7 then will I cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, from of old even for evermore. 8 Behold, ye trust in lying words, that cannot profit. 9 Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other gods that ye have not known, 10 and come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, We are delivered; that ye may do all these abominations? 11 Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, I, even I, have seen it, saith Jehovah. 12 But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I caused my name to dwell at the first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel. 13 And now, because ye have done all these works, saith Jehovah, and I spake unto you, rising up early and speaking, but ye heard not; and I called you, but ye answered not: 14 therefore will I do unto the house which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, as I did to Shiloh. 15 And I will cast you out of my sight, as I have cast out all your brethren, even the whole seed of Ephraim. 16 Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me; for I will not hear thee. 17 Seest thou not what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 18 The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead the dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink-offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger. 19 Do they provoke me to anger? saith Jehovah; `do they' not `provoke' themselves, to the confusion of their own faces? 20 Therefore thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Behold, mine anger and my wrath shall be poured out upon this place, upon man, and upon beast, and upon the trees of the field, and upon the fruit of the ground; and it shall burn, and shall not be quenched. 21 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel: Add your burnt-offerings unto your sacrifices, and eat ye flesh. 22 For I spake not unto your fathers, nor commanded them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt-offerings or sacrifices: 23 but this thing I commanded them, saying, Hearken unto my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people; and walk ye in all the way that I command you, that it may be well with you. 24 But they hearkened not, nor inclined their ear, but walked in `their own' counsels `and' in the stubbornness of their evil heart, and went backward, and not forward. 25 Since the day that your fathers came forth out of the land of Egypt unto this day, I have sent unto you all my servants the prophets, daily rising up early and sending them: 26 yet they hearkened not unto me, nor inclined their ear, but made their neck stiff: they did worse than their fathers. 27 And thou shalt speak all these words unto them; but they will not hearken to thee: thou shalt also call unto them; but they will not answer thee. 28 And thou shalt say unto them, This is the nation that hath not hearkened to the voice of Jehovah their God, nor received instruction: truth is perished, and is cut off from their mouth. 29 Cut off thy hair, `O Jerusalem', and cast it away, and take up a lamentation on the bare heights; for Jehovah hath rejected and forsaken the generation of his wrath. 30 For the children of Judah have done that which is evil in my sight, saith Jehovah: they have set their abominations in the house which is called by my name, to defile it. 31 And they have built the high places of Topheth, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire; which I commanded not, neither came it into my mind. 32 Therefore, behold, the days come, saith Jehovah, that it shall no more be called Topheth, nor The valley of the son of Hinnom, but The valley of Slaughter: for they shall bury in Topheth, till there be no place `to bury'. 33 And the dead bodies of this people shall be food for the birds of the heavens, and for the beasts of the earth; and none shall frighten them away. 34 Then will I cause to cease from the cities of Judah, and from the streets of Jerusalem, the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride; for the land shall become a waste. Chapter 8 1 At that time, saith Jehovah, they shall bring out the bones of the kings of Judah, and the bones of his princes, and the bones of the priests, and the bones of the prophets, and the bones of the inhabitants of Jerusalem, out of their graves; 2 and they shall spread them before the sun, and the moon, and all the host of heaven, which they have loved, and which they have served, and after which they have walked, and which they have sought, and which they have worshipped: they shall not be gathered, nor be buried, they shall be for dung upon the face of the earth. 3 And death shall be chosen rather than life by all the residue that remain of this evil family, that remain in all the places whither I have driven them, saith Jehovah of hosts. 4 Moreover thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith Jehovah: Shall men fall, and not rise up again? Shall one turn away, and not return? 5 Why then is this people of Jerusalem slidden back by a perpetual backsliding? they hold fast deceit, they refuse to return. 6 I hearkened and heard, but they spake not aright: no man repenteth him of his wickedness, saying, What have I done? every one turneth to his course, as a horse that rusheth headlong in the battle. 7 Yea, the stork in the heavens knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle-dove and the swallow and the crane observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the law of Jehovah. 8 How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of Jehovah is with us? But, behold, the false pen of the scribes hath wrought falsely. 9 The wise men are put to shame, they are dismayed and taken: lo, they have rejected the word of Jehovah; and what manner of wisdom is in them? 10 Therefore will I give their wives unto others, and their fields to them that shall possess them: for every one from the least even unto the greatest is given to covetousness; from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. 11 And they have healed the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. 12 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore shall they fall among them that fall; in the time of their visitation they shall be cast down, saith Jehovah. 13 I will utterly consume them, saith Jehovah: there shall be no grapes on the vine, nor figs on the fig-tree, and the leaf shall fade; and `the things that' I have given them shall pass away from them. 14 Why do we sit still? assemble yourselves, and let us enter into the fortified cities, and let us be silent there; for Jehovah our God hath put us to silence, and given us water of gall to drink, because we have sinned against Jehovah. 15 We looked for peace, but no good came; `and' for a time of healing, and, behold, dismay! 16 The snorting of his horses is heard from Dan: at the sound of the neighing of his strong ones the whole land trembleth; for they are come, and have devoured the land and all that is in it; the city and those that dwell therein. 17 For, behold, I will send serpents, adders, among you, which will not be charmed; and they shall bite you, saith Jehovah. 18 Oh that I could comfort myself against sorrow! my heart is faint within me. 19 Behold, the voice of the cry of the daughter of my people from a land that is very far off: is not Jehovah in Zion? is not her King in her? Why have they provoked me to anger with their graven images, and with foreign vanities? 20 The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. 21 For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt: I mourn; dismay hath taken hold on me. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead? is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?




Daily Bible - August 10

Published by Grace To You for reading on August 10th.

Reading for Today:

  • Job 11:1 Chapter 11 1 Then answered Zophar the Naamathite, and said, –12:25
  • Psalms 94:1-11 Chapter 94 1 O Jehovah, thou God to whom vengeance belongeth, Thou God to whom vengeance belongeth, shine forth. 2 Lift up thyself, thou judge of the earth: Render to the proud `their' desert. 3 Jehovah, how long shall the wicked, How long shall the wicked triumph? 4 They prate, they speak arrogantly: All the workers of iniquity boast themselves. 5 They break in pieces thy people, O Jehovah, And afflict thy heritage. 6 They slay the widow and the sojourner, And murder the fatherless. 7 And they say, Jehovah will not see, Neither will the God of Jacob consider. 8 Consider, ye brutish among the people; And ye fools, when will ye be wise? 9 He that planted the ear, shall he not hear? He that formed the eye, shall he not see? 10 He that chastiseth the nations, shall not he correct, `Even' he that teacheth man knowledge? 11 Jehovah knoweth the thoughts of man, That they are vanity.
  • Proverbs 22:24-25 24 Make no friendship with a man that is given to anger; And with a wrathful man thou shalt not go: 25 Lest thou learn this ways, And get a snare to thy soul.
  • Romans 10:1-21 Chapter 10 1 Brethren, my heart's desire and my supplication to God is for them, that they may be saved. 2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. 3 For being ignorant of God's righteousness, and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. 4 For Christ is the end of the law unto righteousness to every one that believeth. 5 For Moses writeth that the man that doeth the righteousness which is of the law shall live thereby. 6 But the righteousness which is of faith saith thus, Say not in thy heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down:) 7 or, Who shall descend into the abyss? (That is, to bring Christ up from the dead.) 8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach: 9 because if thou shalt confess with thy mouth Jesus `as' Lord, and shalt believe in thy heart that God raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved: 10 for with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be put to shame. 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek: for the same `Lord' is Lord of all, and is rich unto all that call upon him: 13 for, Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. 14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? 15 and how shall they preach, except they be sent? even as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that bring glad tidings of good things! 16 But they did not all hearken to the glad tidings. For Isaiah saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? 17 So belief `cometh' of hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. 18 But I say, Did they not hear? Yea, verily, Their sound went out into all the earth, And their words unto the ends of the world. 19 But I say, Did Israel not know? First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy with that which is no nation, With a nation void of understanding will I anger you. 20 And Isaiah is very bold, and saith, I was found of them that sought me not; I became manifest unto them that asked not of me. 21 But as to Israel he saith, All the day long did I spread out my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people.

Notes:

Job 12:2–4 you are the people, and wisdom will die with you! Job responded with cutting sarcasm directed at his know-it-all friends (v. 2) and then reminded them that he understood the principles of which they had spoken (v. 3), but they were irrelevant to his situation. On top of that, he despaired at the pain of becoming a derision to his friends, though he was innocent (v. 4).

Psalm 94:1 to whom vengeance belongs. Vengeance from God is not in the sense of uncontrolled vindictiveness, but in the sense of just retribution by the eternal Judge for trespasses against His law. shine forth. Make an appearance. He may even be asking for a theophany (Pss. 50:2; 80:1).

Romans 10:4 4 For Christ is the end of the law unto righteousness to every one that believeth. Christ is the end of the law. Although the Greek word translated “end” can mean either “fulfillment” or “termination,” this is not a reference to Christ’s having perfectly fulfilled the law through His teaching (Matt. 5:17, 18) or through His sinless life (2 Cor. 5:21). Instead, as the second half of the verse shows, Paul means that belief in Christ as Lord and Savior ends the sinner’s futile quest for righteousness through his imperfect attempts to save himself by efforts to obey the law (3:20–22; Is. 64:6; Col. 2:13, 14).

Romans 10:9 9 because if thou shalt confess with thy mouth Jesus `as' Lord, and shalt believe in thy heart that God raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved: confess…the Lord Jesus. Not a simple acknowledgment that He is God and the Lord of the universe, since even demons acknowledge that to be true ( James 2:19 19 Thou believest that God is one; thou doest well: the demons also believe, and shudder. ). This is the deep personal conviction, without reservation, that Jesus is that person’s own master or sovereign. This phrase includes repenting from sin, trusting in Jesus for salvation, and submitting to Him as Lord. This is the volitional element of faith. God has raised Him from the dead. Christ’s resurrection was the supreme validation of His ministry ( John 2:18 18 The Jews therefore answered and said unto him, What sign showest thou unto us, seeing that thou doest these things? –21). Belief in it is necessary for salvation because it proved that Christ is who He claimed to be and that the Father had accepted His sacrifice in the place of sinners (4:24; Acts 13:32 32 And we bring you good tidings of the promise made unto the fathers, , 33; 1 Pet. 1:3, 4).Without the resurrection, there is no salvation (1 Cor. 15:14–17).

DAY 10: How was Zophar’s argument right and wrong regarding Job’s situation?

In Job 11:1 Chapter 11 1 Then answered Zophar the Naamathite, and said, –20, Zophar the Naamathite stepped in to interrogate Job. He chose to pound Job with the same law of retaliation. Job must repent, he said, not understanding the reality. He was indignant at Job’s protests of innocence. And he moved the allegations against Job to a new level. Not only was Job guilty and unrepentant, he was also an empty talker (vv. 2,3). In fact, Job’s long-winded defense of his innocence and God’s apparent injustice was sin worthy of rebuke, in Zophar’s mind.

In v. 4, Zophar claimed that Job had said, “I am clean in your eyes.” Job never claimed sinlessness; in fact, he acknowledged that he had sinned (7:21; 13:26). But he still maintained his innocence of any great transgression or attitude of unrepentance, affirming his sincerity and integrity as a man of faith and obedience to God. This claim infuriated Zophar (v. 5).

Zophar was correct that Job would have been much wiser if he had only known the unknowable secrets of God (v. 6). In this case, the scene in heaven between God and Satan would have clarified everything. But Job couldn’t know the secret wisdom of God (vv. 7–9). Zophar should have applied his point to himself. If God’s wisdom was so deep, high, long, and broad, how was it that he could understand it and have all the answers? Like his friends, Zophar thought he understood God and reverted to the same law of retaliation, the sowing and reaping principle, to again indict Job. He implied that Job was wicked (vv. 10, 11) and thought he was wise, though actually he was out of control as if he were a “wild donkey man” (v. 12).

Zophar set out 4 steps of Job’s repentance in vv. 13, 14: 1) devote your heart to God; 2) stretch your hands to Him in prayer for forgiveness; 3) put your sin far away; and 4) don’t allow any sin in your tent. If Job did these things, he would be blessed (vv. 15–19). If Job didn’t repent, he would die (v. 20). Zophar was right that the life of faith in God is based on penitence and obedience. He was right that God blesses His people with hope, security, and peace. But, like his friends, he was wrong in not understanding that God allows unpredictable and seemingly unfair suffering for reasons not known to us. He was wrong in presuming that the answer for Job was repentance.

From The MacArthur Daily Bible Copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Thomas Nelson Bibles, a division of Thomas Nelson, Inc, Nashville, TN 37214, www.thomasnelson.com.

Additional Resources        

August 10 - Reverential Fear

Published by Grace To You for reading on August 10th.

“But when the crowds saw this, they were awestruck, and glorified God, who had given such authority to men” ( Matthew 9:8 8 But when the multitudes saw it, they were afraid, and glorified God, who had given such authority unto men. ).

The word rendered “awestruck,” although often translated “fear,” most commonly refers to reverential awe in the New Testament. It is how someone feels who is in the presence of another, infinitely superior person.

“Awestruck” describes the reaction to numerous significant events we read about in the gospels and Acts: the shepherds hearing of Jesus’ birth ( Luke 2:9 9 And an angel of the Lord stood by them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. ), the apostles when their Lord walked on water (Matt. 14:26), the guards at the tomb when the angels rolled away the stone (Matt. 28:2–4), the people in the early church right after Pentecost ( Acts 2:43 43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. ), and the reaction to the deaths of Ananias and Sapphira ( Acts 5:5 5 And Ananias hearing these words fell down and gave up the ghost: and great fear came upon all that heard it. , 11).

Reverential awe of God is an essential part of the genuine Christian life (see 2 Cor. 7:1, 10–11; Phil. 2:12; 1 Peter 3:2 2 beholding your chaste behavior `coupled' with fear. ). This attitude must undergird all important aspects of worship, ministry, love, respect, and even biblical church discipline (see 2 Cor. 5:11; Eph. 5:21; 1 Tim. 5:20).

The awe-filled response by most of the people in the crowd as they witnessed what Jesus did for the paralytic was certainly the right one, especially since it resulted in their giving glory to God. Such an attitude should never be far from us as we strive to faithfully worship and serve the Lord (cf. Acts 9:31 31 So the church throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria had peace, being edified; and, walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, was multiplied. ).

Ask Yourself

How magnificent of a revelation does it take for you to be “awestruck” at God’s splendor and glory? What simple, basic, everyday things are ready examples of His greatness, though disguised as something ordinary and insignificant?

From Daily Readings from the Life of Christ, Vol. 1, John MacArthur. Copyright © 2008. Used by permission of Moody Publishers, Chicago, IL 60610, www.moodypublishers.com.

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Being a Wise Manager

Published by Grace To You for reading on August 10th.

“‘Do not lay up for yourselves treasures upon earth’” ( Matthew 6:19 19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon the earth, where moth and rust consume, and where thieves break through and steal: ).

Wealth comes from God, and we are to manage it wisely for Him.

John Wesley was a godly man who devoted his life to serving the Lord. What is not as well known perhaps is that he was rich, gaining most of his wealth from his published hymns and other works. At one point in his life he gave away 40,000 pounds sterling—a fortune in those days. When he died, his estate was worth only twenty-eight pounds, for he had given nearly everything to the Lord’s work.

It is not wrong for Wesley, or any other believer, to own possessions or be wealthy. Both the Old and New Testaments recognize the right to material possessions, including money, land, animals, houses, clothing, and every other thing that is honestly acquired. Deuteronomy 8:18 18 But thou shalt remember Jehovah thy God, for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth; that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as at this day. says, “It is [God] who is giving you power to make wealth.” God gives us the abilities and resources to obtain wealth. Job, known mostly for his suffering, was a wealthy man. Theologian Gleason Archer wrote, “Job was reputed to be the richest man of his time in all the region. . . . He was the largest stockholder on Wall Street, so to speak. Thus it could be said that this godly man had proved to be a good businessman, a fine citizen, and a father of a large family. As such he enjoyed the highest standing of any man in his community.” In 1 Corinthians 4:7 7 For who maketh thee to differ? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? but if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory as if thou hadst not received it? the apostle Paul asks, “What do you have that you did not receive?” The implication is that we receive everything, including our material possessions, from God.

You are right to provide for your family, make reasonable plans for the future, make sound investments, have money to carry on a business, give to the poor, and support the Lord’s work. But you are wrong if you are dishonest, greedy, covetous, stingy, and miserly about possessions. To honestly earn, save, and give is wise; to hoard and spend only on yourself is unwise and sinful.

Suggestions for Prayer

Thank the Lord for providing for your temporal needs.

For Further Study

Read 1 Timothy 6:17 17 Charge them that are rich in this present world, that they be not highminded, nor have their hope set on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; .

  • What are the rich instructed not to do?
  • What does God richly supply you with? Why?

From Strength for Today by John MacArthur Copyright © 1997. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.com.

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Benevolence Without Love

Published by Grace To You for reading on August 10th.

"If I give all my possessions to feed the poor . . . but do not have love, it profits me nothing" (1 Cor. 13:3).

Love is characterized by self-sacrifice, but not all self-sacrifice is an act of love.

If you've ever donated to your church or another charitable organization out of obligation, peer pressure, legalism, guilt, a desire for recognition, or simply a tax deduction, you know what it means to give without love. In our society it's easy to fall prey to that kind of giving because the needs are so great and fund raisers appeal to every conceivable motive. In addition, many cults and false religions encourage the giving up of possessions and other sacrificial gestures as a supposed means of earning God's favor. But God is more interested in why you give than what you give.

Paul's hypothetical illustration in 1 Corinthians 13:3 3 And if I bestow all my goods to feed `the poor', and if I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profiteth me nothing. is of someone who sacrificed everything he had to feed the poor. The Greek word translated "to feed" means "to dole out in small quantities." Apparently this guy didn't simply write out a check for a food distribution program; he was personally involved in a long-term, systematic program that would eventually consume every resource he had.

Paul doesn't mention motives—only that this person lacked love. Consequently, the benefits of his benevolence were limited to the physical realm. Any spiritual benefits were forfeited.

Jesus, making a similar point, said, "Beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven" (Matt. 6:1). If your motive for giving is to gain the approval of men, their accolades will be your only reward. If you're motivated by love for God, He will reward you abundantly (vv. 2-4).

When you give to the Lord, what is your motive? Do you want others to think more highly of you? Do you feel obligated? Those are subtle influences, so be sure to guard your motives carefully. Remember, the only acceptable motive is love.

Suggestions for Prayer

Ask the Holy Spirit to keep you sensitive to the needs of others, enabling you always to give out of genuine love.

For Further Study

Read Luke 18:9-14 9 And he spake also this parable unto certain who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and set all others at nought: 10 Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. 11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as the rest of men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. 12 I fast twice in the week; I give tithes of all that I get. 13 But the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote his breast, saying, God, be thou merciful to me a sinner. 14 I say unto you, This man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be humbled; but he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. .

  • How did the Pharisee's prayer differ from the tax-gatherer's?
  • How did God respond to each prayer?

From Drawing Near by John MacArthur Copyright © 1993. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.com.

Additional Resources        

Morning Devotional by C.H. Spurgeon for August 10th

Published by C.H. Spurgeon for reading on August 10th.

Colossians 3:4 4 When Christ, `who is' our life, shall be manifested, then shall ye also with him be manifested in glory.

PAUL'S marvellously rich expression indicates, that Christ is the source of our life. "You hath He quickened who were dead in trespasses and sins." That same voice which brought Lazarus out of the tomb raised us to newness of life. He is now the substance of our spiritual life. It is by His life that we live; He is in us, the hope of glory, the spring of our actions, the central thought which moves every other thought. Christ is the sustenance of our life. What can the Christian feed upon but Jesus' flesh and blood? "This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die." O wayworn pilgrims in this wilderness of sin, you never get a morsel to satisfy the hunger of your spirits, except ye find it in Him! Christ is the solace of our life. All our true joys come from Him; and in times of trouble, His presence is our consolation. There is nothing worth living for but Him; and His lovingkindness is better than life! Christ is the object of our life. As speeds the ship towards the port, so hastes the believer towards the haven of his Saviour's bosom. As flies the arrow to its goal, so flies the Christian towards the perfecting of his fellowship with Christ Jesus. As the soldier fights for his captain, and is crowned in his captain's victory, so the believer contends for Christ, and gets his triumph out of the triumphs of his Master. "For him to live is Christ." Christ is the exemplar of our life. Where there is the same life within, there will, there must be, to a great extent, the same developments without; and if we live in near fellowship with the Lord Jesus we shall grow like Him. We shall set Him before us as our Divine copy, and we shall seek to tread in His footsteps, until He shall become the crown of our life in glory. Oh! how safe, how honoured, how happy is the Christian, since Christ is our life!

Evening Devotional by C.H. Spurgeon for August 10th

Published by C.H. Spurgeon for reading on August 10th.

Matthew 9:6 6 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath authority on earth to forgive sins (then saith he to the sick of the palsy), Arise, and take up thy bed, and go up unto thy house.

BEHOLD one of the great Physician's mightiest arts: He has power to forgive sin! While here He lived below, before the ransom had been paid, before the blood had been literally sprinkled on the mercy-seat, He had power to forgive sin. Hath He not power to do it now that He hath died? What power must dwell in Him who to the utmost farthing has faithfully discharged the debts of His people! He has boundless power now that He has finished transgression and made an end of sin. If ye doubt it, see Him rising from the dead! behold Him in ascending splendour raised to the right hand of God! Hear Him pleading before the eternal Father, pointing to His wounds, urging the merit of His sacred passion! What power to forgive is here! "He hath ascended on high, and received gifts for men." "He is exalted on high to give repentance and remission of sins." The most crimson sins are removed by the crimson of His blood. At this moment, dear reader, whatever thy sinfulness, Christ has power to pardon, power to pardon thee, and millions such as thou art. A word will speak it. He has nothing more to do to win thy pardon; all the atoning work is done. He can, in answer to thy tears, forgive thy sins today, and make thee know it. He can breathe into thy soul at this very moment a peace with God which passeth all understanding, which shall spring from perfect remission of thy manifold iniquities. Dost thou believe that? I trust thou believest it. Mayst thou experience now the power of Jesus to forgive sin! Waste no time in applying to the Physician of souls, but hasten to Him with words like these:—

"Jesus! Master! hear my cry; Save me, heal me with a word; Fainting at Thy feet I lie, Thou my whisper'd plaint hast heard."

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