Three Classes Among the Lost

Three groups
THERE IS ONLY ONE LADDER TO HEAVEN-CALVARY’S CROSS.
In our WITNESSING for Christ, we will find THREE types of people for whom we must be armed with Scripture.
1. NEGLECTORS. Hebrews 2:3-“How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?”
ALL one has to do to be ETERNALLY LOST is just to DO NOTHING about being saved. Keep on PUTTING OFF. John 3: 18-“He that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath NOT believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”
The devil’s cleverest trick-ENGROSS ONE’S ATTENTION IN ANYTHING BUT THE ONE ESSENTIAL THING. Hell is paved with good intentions. Then come sickness or accident-and death: TOO LATE!
2. REJECTORS. Many think they are GOOD ENOUGH and do not require anything from Christ. They smugly declare, “I’ll take my chances.” , I~/
SO thought many of the Jews. Paul said, “I bear them record that they have a ZEAL of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of GOD’S righteousness, and going about to establish THEIR OWN righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God” (Romans 10: 3 ) .
We MUST take the WAY of salvation GOD has decreed and provided. We cannot stand in OUR OWN righteousness at His bar. (Read Titus 3:5; Isaiah 64:6.)
3. DESPISERS. Romans 2:4-“Despiseth thou the riches of his goodness?”
These people consider themselves WISER than those who wrote by divine inspiration. 1 Corinthians 3: 19-20-
“The wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, he taketh the wise in their own craftiness. And
again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain.”
MANY such have come to face death in UTTER DESPAIR, BUT-quote John 1:12 and 16.


Look unto Me and Be Ye Saved

Isa 4522
Isaiah 45:22
THE DEVIL’S PARTICULAR DELIGHT IS TO HAVE PEOPLE LOOK AT THEIR OWN RIGHTEOUSNESS.
Three Important LOOKS of the New Testament
1. BACKWARD look to CALVARY. John 1:29-
“Behold the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world.”
Remember: CHRIST saves us by doing FOR us and IN our stead what we CANNOT do for ourselves. HE satisfies the demands of God’s broken law on our behalf; He paid ALL our debt. (Read John 3:36.)
2. UPWARD look to the THRONE. Hebrews 12:2-
“Looking unto [esus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Our RISEN Lord is our High Priest at the right hand of God. (Read Hebrews 7:25). HE gives constant VICTORY to those who “seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God” (Colossians 3:1).
The BELIEVER looks to Him day by day (1) for guidance, (2) for heart searching, (3) for power to live on the heavenly level.
3. FORWARD look to His coming again. Titus 2: 13-
“Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour [or, of our great God and
Saviour] Jesus Christ.”
This is our purifying hope. 1 John 3:3-“Every man that hath this hope in him, purifieth himself, even as he is pure.”
By ever looking FORWARD to His return (a) we try to live as we would like to be found living when He comes; (b) we seek to win others so as to hasten the completion of the mystical body of Christ, the elect number; and (c) we are assured that all our service may be intelligent and enduring.
SUMMARY: Have YOU yet taken that first LOOK of faith toward the LAMB? If NOT, you can expect nothing from the throne and are “without hope” in the world.


How We Grieve the Holy Spirit

grieving the Holy Spirit
IF WE WANT AN INCREASE OF SPIRITUAL BLESSING, THERE MUST BE A DECREASE OF SELF-WILL.
Ephesians 4: 30 Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.”
The New Testament tells of TWO classes of SINS against the Holy Spirit:
1. those committed by UNBELIEVERS.
2. those committed by SAVED PEOPLE.
1. Unbelievers: According to Matthew 12:31 one can blaspheme the Holy Spirit to a point where salvation would be impossible to him.
One may also resist the Holy Spirit (Acts 7:51) to a point where he would have no further desire to be saved. One may often insult the Holy Spirit (Hebrews 10: 29) .
2. CHRISTIANS can do TWO THINGS.
QUENCH” the Spirit, 1 Thessalonians ‘5: 19. This means that, by trying to smother the leading of the Spirit in their hearts (as one might try to quench afire) they get out of fellowship with God and come under His chastening.
GRIEVE the Spirit, Ephesians 4: 30 above. That is, by allowing evil in their hearts, they forfeit their fellowship
with God and become miserable.
In three ways BELIEVERS grieve the Spirit:
1. By DISREGARDING His presence in their hearts.
1 Corinthians 3: 16-HKnow ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” The Holy Spirit is the inner Guest of every born-again person. What kind of a house do we keep for Him?
2. By DISTRUSTING His Word about us. He is the Author of the Bible promises. He is GRIEVED when we refuse to take Him at His Word.
3. By DISREGARDING His commend. to us. Ephesians 5:18 BE FILLED.”
We are God’s property (1 Corinthians 6: 19-20). We grieve Him most when we will not let Him take control of His own property.
True consecration is allowing the Holy Spirit to fill the house which God has purchased as His own.


Fishers of Men

fishers of men
LITTLE SENTENCES SPOKEN SINCERELY FOR JESUS SAVE SOULS FOR ETERNITY.
Matthew 4: 19-“Jesus saith unto them, Follow me, and Iwill make you fishers of men.”
Here is (1) AN ESSENTIAL CONDITION-“follow me”- and (2) AN EXPECTED CONSUMMATION- “I will make you.”
This plainly implies that ALL who truly follow Jesus are under command to be HIS WITNESSES: they should have a TESTIMONY to others.
OBSERVE THESE TWO POINTS:
1. “Follow me.” This means first that one has come to Him for eternal life (John 3: 16) .
It also means that the saved one seeks to follow in His steps as a Christian-“for even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps” (1 Peter 2: 2’1 ). Are you following?
Before one can effectively approach others, he must be a consecrated believer himself-able to say, with the psalmist, Psalm 40:2-3 (read).
2. “I will make you fishers.” This is the expected consequence. He gives His true followers a sense of responsibility toward the unsaved about them.
2 Corinthians 5: 20-“Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.”
EVERY CHRISTIAN’S LIFE WORK is FISHING for others. Making a LIVING is a sideline. Seventy percent of all trade, we are told, comes through PERSONAL SALESMANSHIP.
Of forty specific cases recorded in the gospels, only six came to Jesus of themselves. In twenty cases, we are told, individuals were BROUGHT by someone. CATCH FISH, one by one: this is JESUS’ OWN PLAN. Along the way, every day, IT WILL PAY.


Bible Rules for Bible Study

 
Bible Study
“THE BIBLE IS THE WORD OF LIFE. I BEG YOU TO STUDY IT AND FIND THIS OUT FOR YOURSELF” Woodrow Wilson.
Believers in Berea-Acts 17: ll-“These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.”
Acrostic on SEARCH
SYSTEMATICALLY. 2 Timothy 2: 15-“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”
DON’T use the GRASSHOPPER method of hop, skip, and jump through the Bible. Have a PLAN of study and stick to it.
EARNESTLY. Psalm 119: 18-“Open thou mine eyes, rhat J may behold wondrous things out of thy law.”
Study prayerfully, seeking the GUIDANCE of the Iloly Spirit, who inspired the writers. John! 16:14 “I It shall take of the things of mine and shew them unto you.”
ANXIOUSLY. Psalm 119:27-“Make me to understand the way of thy precepts, so shall I talk of thy wondrous works.”
Study with the purpose of equipping yourself to meet the assaults of Satan and to be a help to others.
REGULARLY. Psalm 1: 2-3-“His delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.”
Just as we need PHYSICAL NOURISHMENT at regular periods, so, if we are to be fruitful for God, we must have regular seasons for MEDITATION.
CAREFULLY. 2 Timothy 3: 16-17-“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thooughly furnished unto all good works.”
Don’t read it just to cover ground, but for instruction.
HUMBLY. Psalm 51 : 17-“A broken and a contrite heart, God, thou wilt not despise.”
God doesn’t give his treasures to stubborn hearts. He loves to reveal His wonders to humble seekers.


The Threefold Ministry

Peter at gate
Acts 3:1-12
IF WE CANNOT DO THE GOOD WE WOULD, WHAT’S THE REASON WE DO NOT DO THE GOOD WE CAN?
Peter and John, in the line of duty, came upon OPPORTUNITY (from ob portus, before a portal): a helpless man at the very gate of the temple. There are OPPORTUNITIES just outside our church door.
Let us see what they did.
1. Ministry of the EYES (Acts 3:4): “And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said: LOOK on us.”
What do we see as we go along our way? Some look with CURIOSITY (John 9: 2), some with CONTEMPT (Luke 10:31-32), some with COMPASSION (Luke 10:33) .
2. Ministry of the LIPS (Acts 3:6): “Then Peter said [the LIPS). Silver and gold have I none: but [what) I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.”
All our prayers for evangelization are bitter irony when our LIPS are sealed in testimony for the Lord. Psalm 35:28: “My tongue shall SPEAK of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long.”
Some say, “I LIVE my religion: I don’t talk it.” If we do not SPEAK for Christ, who gets the credit for our good living? SELF!
3. Ministry of the HAND (Acts 3:7): “And they took him by the right hand and LIFTED HIM UP: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.”
PRAY and PULL is the combination for helping people-RIGHT HAND OF FELLOWSHIP and POWER.
They learned this from JESUS (Mark 1: 31) : “He took her by the right hand and lifted her up.”
RESULT (Acts 3: 8): “And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking,
and leaping, and praising God.”


A Searching Prayer

searching prayer
SIN IS THE GREATEST OF ALL DETECTIVES: BE SURE IT WILL FIND YOU OUT.
Psalm 139:23-24
“Search ME, 0 God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts. And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139:23-24).
NOTE THREE THINGS in David’s attitude: (1) self-examination-“search me … try me”; (2) self-renunciation-He confesses the weakness of the self life, “wicked way in me”; (3) self-dedication-“lead me in the way everlasting.”
THREE THINGS ASKED:
1. “SEARCH me”: he believed that God, by His omnipresence, was aware of every evil tendency in him. He wanted God to make HIM conscious of any hindrance to divine blessing.
2. “TRY me” (lit., “test me as metals are proven in a furnace”) : having invited scrutiny, he now says, “Lord, do anything with me that will make for my purification.” Dare we pray thus (1 Peter 1 :7)?
3. “LEAD me”: he recognizes that it is not in man to lead himself aright. “The way everlasting” is not according to the natural mind. We must be LED in it.
THREE SEATS OF TROUBLE: (1) “know my HEART”-the workshop where we plan all our doings; ( 2) “know my THOUGHTS”-the half-finished product of sin: what we THINK when we are alone shows what we ARE at heart; (3) “see if there be any wicked W AY”- the course of life, finished product, formed habits, ete.
THREE IMPORTANT QUESTIONS:
1. Are we conscious of lack of power?
2. Do we want to be more used of God?
3. Are we ready to pray through to victory?
The course to take: Proverbs 28: 13-“Whoso covereth his sins shall not prosper: whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy”; 1 John 1 :9-“Jf we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from unrighteousness.”
Do we HONESTLY want to be more used of God?


The Books God Writes

writing books
DID YOU KNOW THAT GOD IS STILL WRITING BOOKS?
Psalm 19 shows that God makes Himself known to men through THREE BOOKS of His own writing: (1) vv. 1-6, the book of nature; (2) vv. 7-11, the book of the written Word; (3) vv. 12-14, the book of human life.
1. The BOOK OF NATURE-God’s PRIMER for all people. “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmanent sheweth his handiwork” (v. 1). THEME: the Glory, Handiwork, Knowledge of the Creator.
Romans 1: 12: “The invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead, so that men are without excuse.”
Language of the Book-“Day unto day it uttereth [gives out] speech [the silent voice of nature] and night unto night sheweth knowledge” (Psalm 19: 2). Scope of the Book-“Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world” (v. 3).
2. The BOOK OF THE WRITTEN WORD-God’s ACADEMY. ‘The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlight-
ening the eyes. More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb” (vv. 7-10). THEME: the Glory, Handiwork, Knowledge of the heavenly Father. Language of the Book-The voice of the Holy Spirit. Scope of the Book-“Whosoever” will believe (John 1:12). “By them [God’s testimonies] is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward” (Psalm 19:11).
3. The BOOK OF HUMAN LIFE-the GRADUATED PRODUCT. Every redeemed soul, an epistle of Christ which others read. ARE WE READABLE CHRISTIANS? “Cleanse thou me from secret faults. Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me. . . . Let the words of my mouth,” etc. (vv. 12-14). THEME: the Glory of God revealed in us. Scope of the Book-(Philippians 2: 15-16).
Are these three books in harmony?


God’s Plan of Salvation

the plan
An old lady said, “AH WANTS TO GIT RELIGION, BUT AH DREADS DE PROCESS.”
That is a false notion many have. God has put His plan of salvation by GRACE on a level where ALL can easily get it. The Spirit of God responds to SIMPLE FAITH.
l. JESUS BOUGHT IT. Matthew 20:28: “The Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a RANSOM for many.” 1 Peter 1: 18-19:
“Ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold … but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.”
THIS MEANS that Jesus died as our SUBSTITUTE and gave His precious life to settle the sinner’s debt to God. Had not the Lamb of God (John 1: 29) taken our place, HELL would have been the alternative for all those who come short of the glory of God. I
2. THE WORD TAUGHT IT. God found a way to reveal His universal PLAN through the written Word, translated and passed on from age to age. John 20: 31: “These are written that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.”
We have the privilege of pointing out to our fellow men this divine message of eternal life.
3. FAITH SOUGHT IT. Ephesians 2:8: “For by GRACE [unmerited favor} are ye saved through FAITH:
and that not of yourselves: it is the GIFT of God: not of works.” John 1: 12: “As many as received HIM, to them
gave the power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.”
Thus the GIFT of ETERNAL LIFE is made easily available to ALL. ACCEPT HIM in simple childlike faith and see what happens.
4. THE HOLY SPIRIT WROUGHT IT. Titus 3:5:”NOT by works of righteousness which WE have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration and the renewing of the Holy Spirit.”
“Except a man be born [FROM ABOVE (lit.)} he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3 )


The Why of Trouble for the Christian

trouble sign
CHRISTIAN IS A PERSON WHOM GOD HAS UNDER TREATMENT.
David: ” Psalm 119:67 Before I was afflicted I went astray, But now I keep Your word.
… It is good for me that I have been afflicted, That I may learn Your statutes.” (Psalm 119:67,71).
Even the CHRISTIAN, by natural tendency, is ready to wander at times out of God’s will. AFFLICTIONS become the guide to REFLECTION and the parent of REPENTANCE (Paul’s prayer-Philippians 3: 10).
Many when hemmed in by troubles begin to ask WHY.
God’s Word alone can give us the ANSWERS.
1. PROOF of our spiritual state. We have been putting up a good religious front; but actually, how deep has the heart entered into His fellowship? How much can our faith stand? (See 1 Peter 1:6-7.)
To Israel: “Thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to PROVE thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldst keep his’ commandments” (Deuteronomy 8:2).
Job, says “I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, But now my eye sees You.” (Job 42:5).
Sharp trials are to the soul like a soaking rain to a house. We discover where the leaks are in the roof and where to make repairs, Our RESOLUTION: Job 23: 10.
2. POLISHER of character. James 1:3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing..” (Also Hebrews 12: 7 -11)
Many Christian graces-patience, humility, resignation, meekness, etc.-can’t thrive without trials. Blows to the outward man produce eternal effects in the inner man.
Count each affliction God’s messenger sent to YOU and be not impatient for a quick deliverance. Wait God’s time.
Count on 2 Corinthians 4: 17-18 and Romans 8: 18,28.



 

Leave a Reply