This Body Fashioned Anew
Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body. (Philippians 3:21)
Often when we are racked with pain and unable to think or worship, we feel that this indeed is “the body of our humiliation,” and when we are tempted by the passions which rise from the flesh we do not think the word vile at all too vigorous a translation. Our bodies humble us; and that is about the best thing they do for us. Oh, that we were duly lowly, because our bodies ally us with animals and even link us with the dust!
But our Savior, the Lord Jesus, shall change all this. We shall be fashioned like His own body of glory. This will take place in all who believe in Jesus. By faith their souls have been transformed, and their bodies will undergo such a renewal as shall fit them for their regenerated spirits. How soon this grand transformation will happen we cannot tell; but the thought of it should help us to bear the trials of today and alt the woes of the flesh. In a little while we shall be as Jesus now is. No more aching brows, no more swollen limbs, no more dim eyes, no more fainting hearts. The old man shall be no more a bundle of infirmities, nor the sick man a mass of agony. “Like unto his glorious body.” What an expression! Even our flesh shall rest in hope of such a resurrection!
[from April 13 entry in Faith’s Check Book by Charles Spurgeon
Without Fear of Man
And all people of the earth shall see that thou art called by the name of the Lord; and they shall be afraid of thee. (Deuteronomy 28:10)
Then we can have no reason to be afraid of them. This would show a mean spirit and be a token of unbelief rather than of faith. God can make us so like Himself that men shall be forced to see that we rightly bear His name and truly belong to the holy Jehovah. Oh, that we may obtain this grace which the Lord waits to bestow!
Be assured that ungodly men have a fear of true saints. They hate them, but they also fear them. Haman trembled because of Mordecai, even when he sought the good man’s destruction. In fact, their hate often arises out of a dread which they are too proud to confess. Let us pursue the path of truth and uprightness without the slightest tremor. Fear is not for us but for those who do ill and fight against the Lord of hosts. If indeed the name of the eternal God is named upon us, we are secure; for, as of old, a Roman had but to say Romanus sum, I am a Roman, and he could claim the protection of all the legions of the vast empire; so every one who is a man of God has omnipotence as his guardian, and God will sooner empty heaven of angels than leave a saint without defense. Be braver than lions for the right, for God is with you.
[from Faith’s Checkbook by Charles H. Spurgeon]
A Sure Guide
“I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not” (Isaiah 42:16).
Think of the infinitely glorious Jehovah acting as a Guide to the blind! What boundless condescension does this imply! A blind man cannot find a way which he does not know. Even when he knows the road, it is hard for him to traverse it; but a road which he has not known is quite out of the question for his unguided feet. Now, we are by nature blind as to the way of salvation, and yet the LORD leads us into it and brings us to Himself, and then opens our eyes. As to the future, we are all of us blind and cannot see an hour before us; but the LORD Jesus will lead us even to our journey’s end. Blessed be His name!
We cannot guess in which way deliverance can possibly come to us, but the LORD knows, and He will lead us till we shall have escaped every danger. Happy are those who place their hand in that of the great Guide and leave their way and themselves entirely with Him. He will bring them all the way; and when He has brought them home to glory and has opened their eyes to see the way by which He has led them, what a song of gratitude will they sing unto their great Benefactor! LORD, lead Thy poor blind child this day, for I know not my way!
[Original Post at Crosswalk.com]
“Do not love the world or anything in the world.” -1 John 2:15
An excerpt from CJ Mahaney’s book titled Worldliness:
Charles Spurgeon, writing 150 years ago, nevertheless speaks poignantly to the problem in the church today: “I believe,” he asserted, “that one reason why the church of God at this present moment has so little influence over the world is because the world has so much influence over the church…Worldliness is growing over the church; she is mossed with it.”
[See full excerpt provided in the “Next” Webzine]
Giving Without a Whisper
“But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: that thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in, secret Himself shall regard thee openly” (Matthew 6:3-4).
No promise is made to those who give to the poor to be seen of men. They have their reward at once and cannot expect to be paid twice.
Let us hide away our charity — yes, hide it even from ourselves. Give so often and so much as a matter of course that you no more take note that you have helped the poor than that you have eaten your regular meals. Do your alms without even whispering to yourself, How generous I am! Do not thus attempt to reward yourself. Leave the matter with God, who never fails to see, to record, and to reward. Blessed is the man who is busy in secret with his kindness: he finds a special joy in his unknown benevolences. This is the bread, which eaten by stealth, is sweeter than the banquets of kings. How can I indulge myself today with this delightful luxury? Let me have a real feast of tenderness and Row of soul.
Here and hereafter the LORD Himself will personally see to the rewarding of the secret giver of alms. This will be in His own way and time; and He will choose the very best. How much this promise means it will need eternity to reveal.
[From Faith’s Checkbook by Spurgeon March 2 entry]
“…’My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” -2 Corinthians 12:9
“If you have shallow sorrows you will receive shallow graces. If you have deep afflictions you will obtain deeper proof of God’s faithfulness.” —Spurgeon, Beside Still Waters.
[via Josh Harris]
“I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.” -John 14:18
He Will Return
He left us, and yet we are not left orphans. He is our comfort, and He is gone; but we are not comfortless. Our comfort is that He will come to us, and this is consolation enough to sustain us through His prolonged absence. Jesus is already on His way: He says, “I come quickly”: He rides posthaste toward us. He says, “I will come”: and none can prevent His coming, or put it back for a quarter of an hour. He specially says, “I will come to you”; and so He will. His coming is specially to and for His own people. This is meant to be their present comfort while they mourn that the Bridegroom doth not yet appear.
When we lose the joyful sense of His presence we mourn, but we may not sorrow as if there were no hope. Our LORD in a little wrath has hid Himself from us for a moment, but He will return in full favor. He leaves us in a sense, but only in a sense. When He withdraws, He leaves a pledge behind that He will return. O LORD, come quickly! There is no life in this earthly existence if Thou be gone. We sigh for the return of Thy sweet smile. When wilt Thou come unto us? We are sure Thou wilt appear; but be Thou like a roe, or a young hart. Make no tarrying, O our God!
-by Charles H. Spurgeon in Faith’s Checkbook (February 4 entry)
The Lord Jesus Christ was eternally rich, glorious, and exalted; but “though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor.” As the rich saint cannot be true in his communion with his poor brethren unless of his substance he ministers to their necessities, so (the same rule holding with the head as between the members), it is impossible that our Divine Lord could have had fellowship with us unless he had imparted to us of his own abounding wealth, and had become poor to make us rich. Had he remained upon his throne of glory, and had we continued in the ruins of the fall without receiving his salvation, communion would have been impossible on both sides. Our position by the fall, apart from the covenant of grace, made it as impossible for fallen man to communicate with God as it is for Belial to be in concord with Christ. In order, therefore, that communion might be compassed, it was necessary that the rich kinsman should bestow his estate upon his poor relatives, that the righteous Saviour should give to his sinning brethren of his own perfection, and that we, the poor and guilty, should receive of his fulness grace for grace; that thus in giving and receiving, the One might descend from the heights, and the other ascend from the depths, and so be able to embrace each other in true and hearty fellowship. Poverty must be enriched by him in whom are infinite treasures before it can venture to commune; and guilt must lose itself in imputed and imparted righteousness ere the soul can walk in fellowship with purity. Jesus must clothe his people in his own garments, or he cannot admit them into his palace of glory; and he must wash them in his own blood, or else they will be too defiled for the embrace of his fellowship.
O believer, herein is love! For your sake the Lord Jesus “became poor” that he might lift you up into communion with himself.
-from Charles H. Spurgeon’s “Morning and Evening” (December 24 Morning Entry)
I wanted to share with you all something I found the other day while I was studying my Sunday School lesson. After I had read the text several times, I decided to see if Mr. Spurgeon had anything to say about Jeremiah 3. Of course, he did! You can read his sermon on Jeremiah 3:14 here.
The interesting thing is that an illustration he used in this sermon is one that C.J. Mahaney quoted in his second message at New Attitude. It is an excellent reminder of what God has done for us! It goes hand in hand with not only the Sunday School lesson yesterday, but the two sermons as well! (a. You can’t have beauty in God’s sight to begin with if you have not experienced His love [1 Peter 3:1-6] and b. it fits with Exodus 34:6-7, too!)
Now, it is impossible for you to love God without the strong conclusive evidence that God loves you. I once knew a good woman who was the subject of many doubts, and when I got to the bottom of her doubt, it was this: she knew she loved Christ, but she was afraid He did not love her. “Oh!” I said, “that is a doubt that will never trouble me; never, by any possibility, because I am sure of this, that the heart is so naturally corrupt, that love to God could never get there without God first putting it there.” You may rest quite certain, that if you love God, it is a fruit, and not a root. It is the fruit of God’s love to you, and did not get there by the force of any goodness in you. You may conclude, with absolute certainty, that God loves you if you love God. There never was any difficulty on his part. It always was on your part, and now that the difficulty is gone from you there is no more difficulty left. O let our hearts rejoice and be filled with great delight, because the Savior has loved us and given himself for us. So let us realize the truth of the text, “I am your husband.”
Isn’t it wonderful to know that “He put it there!”
A Thought to Welcome the Month of May
I often read the “Good Morning” page on the Way of the Master website. They have morning and evening Spurgeon devotions featured on that page from another website. His devotionals are always thought-provoking.
Here is the one from this morning:
“His cheeks are as a bed of spices, as sweet flowers.”
Song of Solomon 5:13
Lo, the flowery month is come! March winds and April showers have done their work, and the earth is all bedecked with beauty. Come my soul, put on thine holiday attire and go forth to gather garlands of heavenly thoughts. Thou knowest whither to betake thyself, for to thee “the beds of spices” are well known, and thou hast so often smelt the perfume of “the sweet flowers,” that thou wilt go at once to thy well-beloved and find all loveliness, all joy in him. That cheek once so rudely smitten with a rod, oft bedewed with tears of sympathy and then defiled with spittle—that cheek as it smiles with mercy is as fragrant aromatic to my heart. Thou didst not hide thy face from shame and spitting, O Lord Jesus, and therefore I will find my dearest delight in praising thee. Those cheeks were furrowed by the plough of grief, and crimsoned with red lines of blood from thy thorn-crowned temples; such marks of love unbounded cannot but charm my soul far more than “pillars of perfume.” If I may not see the whole of his face I would behold his cheeks, for the least glimpse of him is exceedingly refreshing to my spiritual sense and yields a variety of delights. In Jesus I find not only fragrance, but a bed of spices; not one flower, but all manner of sweet flowers. He is to me my rose and my lily, my heart’s- ease and my cluster of camphire. When he is with me it is May all the year round, and my soul goes forth to wash her happy face in the morning-dew of his grace, and to solace herself with the singing of the birds of his promises. Precious Lord Jesus, let me in very deed know the blessedness which dwells in abiding, unbroken fellowship with thee. I am a poor worthless one, whose cheek thou hast deigned to kiss! O let me kiss thee in return with the kisses of my lips.
Compliments of CCEL.