PURITY OF HEART AND LIFE

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Matthew 5:8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

“Purity, even purity of heart, is the main thing to be aimed at. We need to be made clean within through the Spirit and the Word, and then we shall be clean without by consecration and obedience. There is a close connection between the affections and the understanding: if we love evil we cannot understand that which is good. If the heart is foul, the eye will be dim. How can those men see a holy God who love unholy things?

What a privilege it is to see God here! A glimpse of Him is heaven below! In Christ Jesus the pure in heart behold the Father. We see Him, His truth, His love, His purpose, His sovereignty, His covenant character, yea, we see Himself in Christ. But this is only apprehended as sin is kept out of the heart. Only those who aim at godliness can cry, “Mine eyes are ever towards the Lord.” The desire of Moses, “I beseech thee, show me thy glory,” can only be fulfilled in us as we purify ourselves from all iniquity. We shall “see him as he is,” and “every one that hath this hope in him purifieth himself.” The enjoyment of present fellowship and the hope of the beatific vision are urgent motives for purity of heart and life. Lord, make us pure in heart that we may see Thee!”

— Charles Spurgeon

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GOD OFTEN DELAYS ANSWERING PRAYER

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“Therefore will the Lord wait that he may be gracious unto you” (Isaiah 30:18).

“God often DELAYS IN ANSWERING PRAYER. We have several instances of this in sacred Scripture. Jacob did not get the blessing from the angel until near the dawn of day-he had to wrestle all night for it. The poor woman of Syrophenicia was answered not a word for a long while. Paul besought the Lord thrice that “the thorn in the flesh” might be taken from him, and he received no assurance that it should be taken away, but instead thereof a promise that God’s grace should be sufficient for him. If thou hast been knocking at the gate of mercy, and hast received no answer, shall I tell thee why the mighty Maker hath not opened the door and let thee in?

Our Father has reasons peculiar to himself for thus keeping us waiting. Sometimes it is to show his power and his sovereignty, that men may know that Jehovah has a right to give or to withhold. More frequently the delay is for our profit. Thou art perhaps kept waiting in order that thy desires may be more fervent. God knows that delay will quicken and increase desire, and that if he keeps thee waiting thou wilt see thy necessity more clearly, and wilt seek more earnestly; and that thou wilt prize the mercy all the more for its long tarrying. There may also be something wrong in thee which has need to be removed, before the joy of the Lord is given. Perhaps thy views of the Gospel plan are confused, or thou mayest be placing some little reliance on thyself, instead of trusting simply and entirely to the Lord Jesus. Or, God makes thee tarry awhile that he may the more fully display the riches of his grace to thee at last. Thy prayers are all filed in heaven, and if not immediately answered they are certainly not forgotten, but in a little while shall be fulfilled to thy delight and satisfaction. Let not despair make thee silent, but continue instant in earnest supplication.”

— Charles Spurgeon

CULTIVATE A GENTLE SPIRIT

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“I do believe that there is nothing that has such power over ungodly men as gentleness of spirit, quietness of behavior, patience of character, and the continual conquest over an
evil temper.

If you grow angry when people are angry with you, you will have lost your witness. But if you can be patient under persecution, if you can smile when they ridicule you, if you can yield your rights, if you can bear and continue to bear, you are greater than the man who has taken a city.

Let the meek and lowly Christ be your example, and seek to be a partaker of his Spirit. He prayed even for his murderers, “Father, forgive them,” and he ever sought to return good for evil.

I pray you to do the same, cultivate a gentle spirit.”

— Charles Spurgeon

SPIRITUAL WARFARE

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I came not to send peace on earth, but a sword.  Matthew 10:34

“The Christian will be sure to make enemies. It will be one of his objects to make none; but if to do the right, and to believe the I true, should cause him to lose every earthly friend, he will count it but a small loss, since his great Friend in heaven will be yet more friendly, and reveal Himself to him more graciously than ever. O ye who have taken up His cross, know ye not what your Master said? “I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother; and a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.” Christ is the great Peacemaker; but before peace, He brings war. Where the light cometh, the darkness must retire. Where truth is, the lie must flee; or, if it abideth, there must be a stern conflict, for the truth cannot and will not lower its standard, and the lie must be trodden under foot. If you follow Christ, you shall have all the dogs of the world yelping at your heels. If you would live so as to stand the test of the last tribunal, depend upon it the world will not speak well of you. He who has the friendship of the world is an enemy to God; but if you are true and faithful to the Most High, men will resent your unflinching fidelity, since it is a testimony against their iniquities. Fearless of all consequences, you must do the right. You will need the courage of a lion unhesitatingly to pursue a course which shall turn your best friend into your fiercest foe; but for the love of Jesus you must thus be courageous. For the truth’s sake to hazard reputation and affection, is such a deed that to do it constantly you will need a degree of moral principle which only the Spirit of God can work in you; yet turn not your back like a coward, but play the man. Follow right manfully in your Master’s steps, for He has traversed this rough way before you. Better a brief warfare and eternal rest, than false peace and everlasting torment.”

— Charles Spurgeon

PRAYER

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“Prayer is the highest activity of the human soul, and therefore it is at the same time the ultimate test of a man’s true spiritual condition (there is nothing so much as prayer life that tells the truth about us as Christian people). Everything we do in the Christian life is easier than prayer.”   – Martyn Lloyd-Jones

“No man is greater than his prayer life. Poverty-stricken as the church is today in many things, she is most stricken here, in the place of prayer. We have many organizers, but few agonizers; many players and payers, few pray-ers; many singers, few clingers; lots of pastors, few wrestlers; many fears, few tears; much fashion, little passion; many interferers, few intercessors; many writers, but few fighters. Failing here, we fail everywhere.”  – Leonard Ravenhill

“It is in the closet, in the morning watch, that our spiritual life is both tested and strengthened. There is the battlefield where it is to be decided every day whether God is to have all, whether our life is to be absolute obedience. If we truly conquer there, getting rid of ourselves into the hands of our Almighty Lord, the victory during the day is sure. It is there, in the inner chamber, proof is to be given whether we really delight in God, and make it our aim to love Him with our whole heart.”  – Andrew Murray

“Prayer plumes the wings of God’s young eaglets so that they may learn to mount above the clouds. Prayer brings inner strength to God’s warriors and sends them forth to spiritual battle with their muscles firm and their armor in place.”  – Charles Spurgeon

FAMILY OR CHRIST?

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Luke 14:26-27 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.

Psalms 45:10-11 Hearken, O daughter, and consider, and incline thine ear; forget also thine own people, and thy father’s house; So shall the king greatly desire thy beauty: for he is thy Lord; and worship thou him.

 

HE CARES FOR ME!

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“Casting all your care upon Him — for He cares for you!” 1 Peter 5:7

It is a happy way of soothing sorrow, when we can feel — “HE cares for ME!” Christian! do not dishonor God, by always wearing a brow of worry! Come — cast your burden upon your God! You are staggering beneath a weight — which your Father would not feel. What seems like a crushing burden to you — would be but as small dust to Him. Nothing is so sweet as to,
“Lie passive in God’s hands,
And know no will, but His.”

O child of suffering — be patient! God has not overlooked you in His providence. He who is the feeder of sparrows — will also furnish you with what you need. Do not sit down in despair.

There is One who cares for you!

His all-seeing eye is fixed on you!

His all-loving heart beats with pity for your woe!

His omnipotent hand shall yet bring you the needed help!

The darkest cloud — shall scatter itself in showers of mercy.

The blackest gloom — shall give place to the morning light.

If you are one of His family — He will bind up your wounds, and heal your broken heart. Do not doubt His grace, because of your troubles — but believe that He loves you as much in seasons of distress — as in times of happiness. What a serene and quiet life might you lead — if you would leave providing — to the God of providence!

If God cares for you — why need you care also? Can you trust Him for your soul — and not for your body? He has never refused to bear your burdens — He has never fainted under their weight. Come, then, soul! Be done with fretful worry — and leave all your concerns in the hand of your gracious God!

— Charles Spurgeon

IS IT BIGOTRY TO PREACH THE TRUTH?

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I cannot endure false doctrine, however neatly it may be put before me. Would you have me eat poisoned meat because the dish is of the choicest ware? It makes me indignant when I hear another gospel put before the people with enticing words by man who would fair make merchandise of souls; and I marvel at those who have soft words for such deceivers. “That is your bigotry,” says one. Call it so if you like; but it is the BIGOTRY OF THE LOVING JOHN, who wrote, “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him Godspeed; for he that biddeth him Godspeed is partaker of his evil deeds.” I would to God we all had more of such decision, for the lack of it is depriving our religious life of its backbone and substituting for honest manliness a mass of tremulous jelly of mutual flattery. HE WHO DOES NOT HATE THE FALSE DOES NOT LOVE THE TRUE; and he to whom it is all the same, whether it be God’s word or man’s, is himself unrenewed at heart. Oh, if some of you were like your fathers, you would not have tolerated in this age the wagon loads of trash under which the gospel has been of late buried by ministers of your own choosing. The apostle spake by inspiration when he said, “If we or an angel from heaven preach to you any other gospel than that ye have received, let him be accursed.” According to modem effeminacy he ought to have said, “Let him be kindly spoken with in private, but pray make no stir. No doubt the good brother has his own original modes of thought and we must not question his liberty. Doubtless he believes the same as we do, only there is some little difference as to terms.” This is treason to Christ and treachery to truth and cruelty to souls. IF WE LOVE OUR LORD, WE SHALL KEEP HIS WORDS AND STAND FAST IN THE FAITH, coming out from among the false teachers. Nor is this inconsistent with charity; for the truest love to those who err is not to fraternize with them in their error, but to be faithful to Jesus Christ in all things.”

C H Spurgeon

JUDGE EVERY PREACHER

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“May I beg you carefully to judge every preacher, not by his gifts, not by his elocutionary powers, not by his status in society, not by the respectability of his congregation, not by the prettiness of his church, but this — DOES HE PREACH THE WORD OF TRUTH, THE GOSPEL OF YOUR SALVATION? If he does, your sitting under his ministry may prove to you the means of begetting faith in you. But if he does not, you cannot expect God’s blessings.”

— C H Spurgeon

Acts 17:11 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.

1 John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

1 Thessalonians 5:21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.