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THE WORLD

慕安德烈每日靈修 God's Best Secrets by Andrew Murray

 
Scripture: "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him." —1 JOHN ii. xv.
        John teaches us clearly what he means by the world. He says: "All that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life is not of the Father, but is of the world" (1 John ii. 16).
        The world is that disposition or power under which man has fallen through sin. And the god of this world, in order to deceive man, conceals himself under the form of what God has created. The world with its pleasures surrounds the Christian each day with temptations.
        This was the case with Eve in the Garden of Eden. We find in Genesis iii, the three characteristics which John mentions: 1. The lust of the flesh—"The woman saw the tree that it was good for food." 2. The lust of the eyes—"It was pleasant to the eyes." 3. The pride of life—"A tree to be desired to make one wise." And the world still comes to us offering desirable food and much to please the fleshly appetites. And much that the eye desires, riches and beauty and luxury. And the pride of life, when a man imagines he knows and understands everything, and prides himself on it.
        Is our life in the world not full of danger, with the allurements °f the flesh,—so much to occupy our eyes and our hearts, so much worldly wisdom and knowledge?
        So John tells us: "Love not the world, for then the love of the Father is not in you." And our Lord calls us, as He called His disciples of old, to leave all and follow Him.
        Christian, you live in a dangerous world. Cleave fast to the Lord Jesus. As He teaches you to shun the world and its attractions, your love will go out to Him in loyal-hearted service. But remember—There must be daily fellowship with Jesus. His love alone can expel the love of the world. Take time to be alone with your Lord.

He Acts on Honest Confession

信心的支票簿 Faith's check book

 
Scripture: "He looketh upon men, and if any say, I have sinned, and perverted that which was right, and it profited me not; He will deliver his soul from going into the pit, and his life shall see the light"(Job 33:27-28).
        This is a word of truth, gathered from the experience of a man of God, and it is tantamount to a promise. What the LORD has done, and is doing, He will continue to do while the world standeth. The LORD will receive into His bosom all who come to Him with a sincere confession of their sin; in fact, He is always on the lookout to discover any that are in trouble because of their faults.
        Can we not endorse the language here used? Have we not sinned, sinned personally so as to say, "I have sinned"? Sinned willfully, having perverted that which is right? Sinned so as to discover that there is no profit in it but an eternal loss? Let us, then, go to God with this honest acknowledgment. He asks no more. We can do no less.
        Let us plead His promise in the name of Jesus. He will deliver us from the pit of hell which yawns for us; He will grant us life and light. Why should we despair? Why should we even doubt? The LORD does not mock humble souls. He means what He says. The guilty can be forgiven. Those who deserve execution can receive free pardon. LORD, we confess, and we pray Thee to forgive!

Morning, January 25

司布真日間靈修 Morning by Morning

 
Scripture: “I will mention the lovingkindnesses of the Lord, and the praises of the Lord, according to all that the Lord hath bestowed on us.”(Isaiah 63:7)
        And canst thou not do this? Are there no mercies which thou hast experienced? What though thou art gloomy now, canst thou forget that blessed hour when Jesus met thee, and said, “Come unto me”? Canst thou not remember that rapturous moment when he snapped thy fetters, dashed thy chains to the earth, and said, “I came to break thy bonds and set thee free”? Or if the love of thine espousals be forgotten, there must surely be some precious milestone along the road of life not quite grown over with moss, on which thou canst read a happy memorial of his mercy towards thee? What, didst thou never have a sickness like that which thou art suffering now, and did he not restore thee? Wert thou never poor before, and did he not supply thy wants? Wast thou never in straits before, and did he not deliver thee? Arise, go to the river of thine experience, and pull up a few bulrushes, and plait them into an ark, wherein thine infant- faith may float safely on the stream. Forget not what thy God has done for thee; turn over the book of thy remembrance, and consider the days of old. Canst thou not remember the hill Mizar? Did the Lord never meet with thee at Hermon? Hast thou never climbed the Delectable Mountains? Hast thou never been helped in time of need? Nay, I know thou hast. Go back, then, a little way to the choice mercies of yesterday, and though all may be dark now, light up the lamps of the past, they shall glitter through the darkness, and thou shalt trust in the Lord till the day break and the shadows flee away. “Remember, O Lord, thy tender mercies and thy lovingkindnesses, for they have been ever of old.”

Evening, January 25

司布真夜間靈修 Evening by Evening

 
Scripture: “Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.”(Romans 3:31)
        When the believer is adopted into the Lords family, his relationship to old Adam and the law ceases at once; but then he is under a new rule, and a new covenant. Believer, you are Gods child; it is your first duty to obey your heavenly Father. A servile spirit you have nothing to do with: you are not a slave, but a child; and now, inasmuch as you are a beloved child, you are bound to obey your Fathers faintest wish, the least intimation of his will. Does he bid you fulfil a sacred ordinance? It is at your peril that you neglect it, for you will be disobeying your Father. Does he command you to seek the image of Jesus? Is it not your joy to do so? Does Jesus tell you, “Be ye perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect”? Then not because the law commands, but because your Saviour enjoins, you will labour to be perfect in holiness. Does he bid his saints love one another? Do it, not because the law says, “Love thy neighbour,” but because Jesus says, “If ye love me, keep my commandments;” and this is the commandment that he has given unto you, “that ye love one another.” Are you told to distribute to the poor? Do it, not because charity is a burden which you dare not shirk, but because Jesus teaches, “Give to him that asketh of thee.” Does the Word say, “Love God with all your heart”? Look at the commandment and reply, “Ah! commandment, Christ hath fulfilled thee already—I have no need, therefore, to fulfil thee for my salvation, but I rejoice to yield obedience to thee because God is my Father now and he has a claim upon me, which I would not dispute.” May the Holy Ghost make your heart obedient to the constraining power of Christs love, that your prayer may be, “Make me to go in the path of thy commandments; for therein do I delight.” Grace is the mother and nurse of holiness, and not the apologist of sin.

Thy Rod and Thy Staff

荒漠甘泉 Streams in the Desert

 
Scripture: "Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me" (Ps. 23:4).
        At my fathers house in the country there is a little closet in the chimney corner where are kept the canes and walking-sticks of several generations of our family. In my visits to the old house, when my father and I are going out for a walk, we often go to the cane closet, and pick out our sticks to suit the fancy of the occasion. In this I have frequently been reminded that the Word of God is a staff.
        During the war, when the season of discouragement and impending danger was upon us, the verse, "He shall not be afraid of evil tidings; his heart is fixed, trusting in the Lord," was a staff to walk with many dark days.
        When death took away our child and left us almost heartbroken, I found another staff in the promise that "weeping may endure for the night, but joy cometh in the morning."
        When in impaired health, I was exiled for a year, not knowing whether I should be permitted to return to my home and work again, I took with me this staff which never failed, "He knoweth the thoughts that he thinketh toward me, thoughts of peace and not of evil."
        In times of special danger or doubt, when human judgment has seemed to be set at naught, I have found it easy to go forward with this staff, "In quietness and confidence shall be your strength." And in emergencies, when there has seemed to be no adequate time for deliberation or for action, I have never found that this staff has failed me, "He that believeth shall not make haste." --Benjamin Vaughan Abbott, in The Outlook
        "I had never known," said Martin Luthers wife, "what such and such things meant, in such and such psalms, such complaints and workings of spirit; I had never understood the practice of Christian duties, had not God brought me under some affliction." It is very true that Gods rod is as the schoolmasters pointer to the child, pointing out the letter, that he may the better take notice of it; thus He pointeth out to us many good lessons which we should never otherwise have learned. --Selected
        "God always sends His staff with His rod."
        "Thy shoes shall be iron and brass; and as thy days, so shall thy strength be" (Deut.33:25).
        Each of us may be sure that if God sends us on stony paths He will provide us with strong shoes, and He will not send us out on any journey for which He does not equip us well. --Maclaren

Foreign languages

Restoring My Soul (VOL1) Day 18

 
References: Gen 11:4-9 Acts 2:44 Eph 3:15 1 Cor 14:10-11 Further Study: Isa 33:19 Acts 2:37-47
A foreign language is simply a language we do not understand. Until the time of Babel, mankind spoke in a common tongue. However, to guard this unity, they said to one another, ‘Let us make a name for ourselves; lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth’. In his letter to the Ephesians, Paul spoke of bowing his knee to the Father ‘from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name’. The motivation of the people building the tower of Babel, stood in direct opposition to this mode of bowing and submitting to the Father’s will. Instead of bowing, they sought to ascend. And instead of searching for their name hidden in the Father, they sought to make a name for themselves. As a result, the Lord scattered them ‘abroad over the whole earth’. This scattering was caused by God confusing their languages, so they couldn’t ‘understand one another’s speech’. In an instant, the people became foreigners to one another. This is the meaning of being sent away. Writing to the Corinthians, Paul developed this theme. ‘If then I do not know the meaning of the language, I shall be to the one who speaks, a foreigner, and the one who speaks will be a foreigner to me.’ When Christ preached peace from the cross, He reversed the judgement of Babel and the penalty of foreign tongues. However, only in the body of Christ is this phenomenon reversed, where we can live together in fellowship with ‘all things in common’.

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Feeding on His word

Restoring My Soul (VOL2) Day 18

 
References Further Study 1 John 1:3 John 6:54 John 6:41-68 Psa 27:2 Phil 3:21
Jesus said, ‘He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life’. He is transferring the zoe life He has received from the Father to us. We feed on Him in the adoptive context of the body of Christ by receiving His word. It is His word that calls us forward into fellowship and, therefore, into a genuine participation in His zoe life. The apostle John proclaimed the Word of Life, ‘so that you may have fellowship with us’. His flesh and blood are zoe life which become our life by receiving His word in the fellowship of the body of Christ. Participation and fellowship are part of our worship in Spirit. It is not transubstantiation. Transubstantiation would only pull the flesh of Christ down to sustain us in our mortality. Like the Israelites eating the manna in the wilderness, it would give us nothing in relation to a resurrection to eternal life. To physically eat Christ’s flesh and blood would fulfil the Messianic words of David in Psalm 27. ‘When the wicked came against me, to eat up my flesh, my enemies and foes, they stumbled and fell.’ They stumbled over Christ the stumbling stone because they refused to be built on Him. They refused to come into fellowship with Him through the adoption by receiving His word. Accordingly, they could not be born from above and receive zoe life. The terror of a resurrection body without the substance of Christ’s zoe life is frightening in the extreme. This is nothing more than a resurrection to eternal corruption and death. We must feed on His word to receive the substance of zoe life. Let us say again, the physical body of Jesus is the substance of every believer’s resurrection body, fashioned like His glorious body.

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Caught in a trespass

Restoring My Soul (VOL3) Day 18

 
References Further Study Gal 6:1 1Pe 4:8 Gal 6 1Jn 1:9 Rev 3:12 1Jn 2:20 Lev 7:21 Jas 5:19-20
According to Moses, if anyone partook of the peace offering while they were unclean, they were to be cut off from the nation. They were in need of a trespass or a guilt offering. Paul was referring to this when he said, ‘If anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness’. James spoke similarly, ‘My brethren if any among you strays from the truth and one turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins’. The trespass offering is perhaps the most vivid expression of the love of God in Christ. We must participate in this offering by recovering and restoring those who have strayed from the truth. The apostle Peter said, ‘Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another because love covers a multitude of sins’. John was sure when he proclaimed, ‘If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness’. Having laid hold of a trespass offering and restored, we are in need of oil. If we are to be pillars in the temple of God and ‘not go out from it anymore’ then we will need to raise heave offerings. It was for this reason that Jacob anointed the pillar at Bethel with oil. John has encouraged us that we have an anointing from the Holy One. This is the oil of the peace offering. And this is likewise the oil that was poured over the head of Aaron. He was presented before the Lord as a wave offering and dedicated to his service.

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Caught in a trespass

Restoring My Soul (VOL4) Day 18

 
References Further Study Zec 4:2 Jer 1 Jer 1:11 Zec 6:13
From a number of directions, the symbol of the almond becomes clear. Zechariah was asked the same question as Jeremiah, ‘What do you see?’ And immediately, he was shown a lampstand – the branching of the almond. In Aaron’s case, God intended to perform His word and raise up an entire serving administration, growing out of Aaron’s tribe, Levi. In this symbolic event, the focus on the rod of God shifted from the kingship of Moses to the priesthood of Aaron. Thus, the priority of priesthood was established, as explained in the prophecy concerning Christ; ‘He shall be a priest on His throne’. By the rod of Aaron, the ‘rod of an almond’, God signified that a serving, offering priesthood was to proceed from the wilderness phase. An offering economy would be established, albeit not until the nation reached the promised land. The picture becomes clear. The Son branched out of His place and included us in Himself; in the vine. Even more than this, He has accomplished His word and brought forth the fruit of light in the rod of the almond. And more so again, He has supplied the pure oil of pressed olives so that the full testimony of the seven Spirits of God would be seen upon a lampstand. Overall then, the fruit of new creation life is the light of the testimony of Christ. The symbol of the vine explains our relationship in new creation to the one blood of the covenant. The symbol of the almond builds on this by showing the three-fold development of testimony. Then the symbol of the olive adds the aspect that the pure oil of pressed olives feeding the lamps, is the oil of the Spirit of Christ.

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