..."and a highway shall be there, and it shall be called the way of holiness; evil minded people shall not travel on it, but it shall be for those wayfarers who are traveling toward God. (Isaiah 35:8, adapted)

Saturday, June 27, 2009

C. T. Studd on a Red-Hot, Unconventional, Unfettered Holy Ghost Religion

Christ's call is ... to save the lost,
not the stiff-necked; He came not to call
scoffers but sinners to repentance;
not to build and furnish comfortable chapels,
churches, and cathedrals at home in which to
rock Christian professors to sleep by means
of clever essays, stereotyped prayers and
artistic musical performances, but to capture
men from the devil's clutches and snatch them
from the very jaws of Hell.

But this can be accomplished only by a red-hot,
unconventional, unfettered Holy Ghost religion,
where neither man nor traditions are worshipped
or preached, but only Christ and Him
... C. T. Studd (1860-1931), quoted in C. T. Studd--
Cricketer and Pioneer [1933],
Norman P. Grubb, p. 163

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

T.Austin Sparks on Pioneering

The whole history of the Church is
one long story of this tendency to
settle down on this earth and to become
conformed to this world, to find
acceptance and popularity here and to
eliminate the element of conflict and
of pilgrimage. That is the trend and
the tendency of everything.

Therefore outwardly, as well as inwardly,
pioneering is a costly thing.
--T. Austin Sparks

Friday, June 19, 2009

Prayer is for All Times

Reading is good, hearing is good, conversation
and meditation are good; but then, they are only
good at times and occasions, in a certain degree,
and must be used and governed with such caution as
we eat and drink and refresh ourselves, or they
will bring forth in us the fruits of intemperance.

But the spirit of prayer is for all times and
occasions; it is a lamp that is to be always burning,
a light to be ever shining: everything calls for it;
everything is to be done in it and governed by it,
because it is and means and wills nothing else but
the totality of the soul -- not doing this or
that, but wholly...given up to God to be where and
what and how He pleases.
- William Law

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Perfectly Joined

by Derek Gitsham

"Now I beseech you, brethren, by the
Name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you
all speak the same thing, and that there
be no divisions among you, but that you be
perfectly joined together in the same mind
and in the same judgment." --- 1 Corinthians 1:10

Upon first glance at this verse one would
question Paul. Could it be possible for any
group of believers to live and dwell together
without contentions and divisions? To Paul the
answer is definitely in the affirmative. It is
possible. However, there were divisions in existence
in the Corinthian church, and because of them,
erroneous teachings were beginning
to creep in.

Later in the first Epistle, Paul addresses the
issue and goes straight to the point in chapter 3:1-3.
He tells them they are not spiritual but carnal, even
babes in Christ. He says of them, in verse three, that
they were carnal, because there was envying, and strife,
and divisions, “Are you not carnal and walk as men?”

Paul talks of carnality in the Romans Epistle calling
it, “enmity against God.” In other words it was against
God. Divisiveness is a spiritual thing. Paul says we
have been given the ministry of reconciliation. Ministry
is a life not a pulpit function. Every one of us is
ministering something. It is either divisiveness or
reconciliation, depending on what God has been able to
do in our hearts. Carnality is a fleshy thing.

Again Paul says that if we ‘live after the flesh we shall
die: but if you through the Spirit do mortify (destroy by
neglect) the deeds of the body, you shall live’ (Romans 8:13).
We need to be conscious of things in ourselves that are
divisive, take them to the Lord and pray that we might be
perfectly joined to those we are not naturally one with.
Paul believed it, God expects us to work it out in ourselves.
Whatever is separating us from our brethren we must lay on
the altar, and see God change us in the process. The fault
is not in my brother, it is in me. Be perfectly joined

Not Overcome

"He said not Thou shalt not be tempested,
thou shalt not be travailed, thou shalt
not be distressed; but He said, Thou
shalt not be overcome."
Julian of Norwich (1342-1417)

Friday, June 05, 2009

Have I Not Seen The Lord?

by Derek Gitsham

"And last of all he was seen of me also,
as of one born out of due time." I Corinthians 15:8

The Apostle Paul was not numbered among the
first and original Apostles. Yet he made
the claim along with them that he had seen
the Lord. In a previous chapter (9:1), he
mentions again that he had seen the Lord,
in defense of his apostleship to the Corinthians.

The reason for this was that they were questioning
his authority over them, so he needed to clarify
his position among them, and to give proof of his
Apostleship. In another reference he says that
the signs of an apostle were “wrought among you
in all patience, in signs and wonders and mighty
deeds” (II Corinthians 12:12).

The interesting thing to note here is that Paul
had never seen Jesus in the flesh, yet compares
what had happened to him on the Damascus Road as
the same as seeing Jesus in the flesh after He was
risen from the dead. All the references in
I Corinthians 15 were to those who had seen Jesus
raised from the dead, but he also lists the names
and includes a number of five hundred who also had
seen Him. There were infallible proofs to Jesus
being raised. Right in the middle of all their
claims, Paul says, ‘He was seen of me.’

This was obviously a spiritual event, a light shining
from heaven, and Jesus speaking to Paul. The many
who had seen Jesus alive after His death became
eyewitnesses to His Resurrection. Though Paul
includes himself among those chosen ones, his
personal encounter with Jesus was a special
moment for him.

Jesus was now in the glory, at the right hand of
God, revealing Himself to Saul of Tarsus; an event
that would change him forever and save him. Paul
did not see just a resurrected Jesus, but an ascended
and glorified Jesus. Was not this an honour being
bestowed on him that was to greatly affect the whole
Christian world throughout the Church Age? To see Him
in His glorified state was indeed something Paul would
never forget. Surely the Holy Ghost comes to bear
witness to and glorify Jesus. May we seek to encounter
the Risen and Glorified Christ and may let Him be
glorified in us all today.