Tag Archives: Alistair Begg

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –The Glory of God

The Lord our God has shown us his glory.

Deuteronomy 5:24

God’s great design in all His works is the manifestation of His own glory. Any aim less than this would be unworthy of Himself.

But how shall the glory of God be manifested to such fallen creatures as we are? Man’s eye is not single in its focus; he always has a side glance toward his own honor, has too high an estimate of his own powers, and so is not qualified to behold the glory of the Lord. It is clear, then, that self must stand out of the way, that there may be room for God to be exalted. And this is the reason why He often brings His people into straits and difficulties, that, being made conscious of their own folly and weakness, they may be fitted to behold the majesty of God when He comes to work their deliverance. He whose life is one even and smooth path will see but little of the glory of the Lord, for he has few occasions of self-emptying and hence but little fitness for being filled with the revelation of God. They who navigate little streams and shallow creeks know but little of the God of tempests; but they who are “doing business on the great waters”1 see “his wondrous works in the deep.”2 Among the huge waves of bereavement, poverty, temptation, and reproach, we learn the power of Jehovah, because we feel the littleness of man.

Thank God, then, if you have been led by a rough road: It is this that has given you your experience of God’s greatness and loving-kindness. Your troubles have enriched you with a wealth of knowledge to be gained by no other means: Your trials have been the crevice of the rock in which Jehovah has set you, as He did His servant Moses, that you might behold His glory as it passed by. Praise God that you have not been left to the darkness and ignorance that continued prosperity might have involved, but that in the great fight of affliction you have been qualified for the outshinings of His glory in His wonderful dealings with you.

1) Psalm 107:23
2) Psalm 107:24

C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –The Persons of the Trinity

Beloved in God the Father. . . . Sanctified in Christ Jesus. . . . In the sanctification of the Spirit.

Jude 1:1

Consider the union of the three Divine Persons in all their gracious acts. How unwisely do those believers talk who make preferences in the Persons of the Trinity, who think of Jesus as if He were the embodiment of everything lovely and gracious, while the Father they regard as severely just but destitute of kindness. Equally wrong are those who magnify the decree of the Father and the atonement of the Son so as to depreciate the work of the Spirit.

In works of grace none of the Persons of the Trinity act separately from the rest. They are as united in their works as in Their essence. In Their love toward the chosen They are one, and in the actions that flow from that great central source They are still undivided.

Notice this especially in the matter of sanctification. While it is right to speak of sanctification as the work of the Spirit, yet we must make sure that we do not view it as if the Father and the Son were not involved. It is correct to speak of sanctification as the work of the Father, of the Son, and of the Spirit. Still God says, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness,”1 and so we are “his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”2

See the value that God sets upon real holiness, since the three Persons in the Trinity are represented as co-working to produce a Church without “spot or wrinkle or any such thing.”3 And you, believer, as the follower of Christ, must also set a high value on holiness—upon purity of life and godliness of conversation. Value the blood of Christ as the foundation of your hope, and never speak disparagingly of the work of the Spirit. This day let us live in such a way as to manifest the work of the Triune God in us.

1) Genesis 1:26
2) Ephesians 2:10
3) Ephesians 5:27

C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –God’s Hand in Your Life

Forget not all his benefits.

Psalm 103:2

It is a delightful and profitable occupation to mark the hand of God in the lives of ancient saints and to observe His goodness in delivering them, His mercy in pardoning them, and His faithfulness in keeping His covenant with them. But would it not be even more interesting and profitable for us to observe the hand of God in our own lives? Should we not look upon our own history as being at least as full of God, as full of His goodness and of His truth, as much a proof of His faithfulness and veracity as the lives of any of the saints who have gone before?

We do our Lord an injustice when we suppose that He performed all His mighty acts and showed Himself strong for those in the early time but does not perform wonders or lay bare His arm for the saints who are now upon the earth. Let us review our own lives. Surely in these we may discover some happy incidents, refreshing to ourselves and glorifying to our God. Have you had no deliverances? Have you passed through no rivers, supported by the divine presence? Have you walked through no fires unharmed? Have you had no manifestations? Have you had no choice favors? The God who gave Solomon the desire of his heart, has He never listened to you and answered your requests? That God of lavish bounty of whom David sang, “who satisfies you with good,”1 has He never filled you up to overflowing? Have you never been made to lie down in green pastures? Have you never been led by the still waters?

Surely the goodness of God has been the same to us as to the saints of old. Let us, then, weave His mercies into a song. Let us take the pure gold of thankfulness and the jewels of praise and make them into another crown for the head of Jesus. Let our souls produce music as sweet and as exhilarating as came from David’s harp while we praise the Lord whose mercy endures forever.

1) Psalm 103:5

C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –The Secret Strength of Faith

Tell me where your great strength lies.

Judges 16:6

Where does the secret strength of faith lie? It lies in the food it feeds on; for faith studies what the promise is-an emanation of divine grace, an overflowing of the great heart of God. And faith says, “My God could not have given this promise except from love and grace; therefore it is quite certain His Word will be fulfilled.” Then faith thinks, “Who gave this promise?” It considers not so much its greatness as, “Who is the author of it?” She remembers that it is God, who cannot lie-God omnipotent, God immutable-and therefore concludes that the promise must be fulfilled; and onward she proceeds in this firm conviction. She remembers why the promise was given—namely, for God’s glory—and she feels perfectly sure that God’s glory is safe, that He will never stain His own insignia, nor spoil the sparkle of His own crown; and therefore the promise must and will stand.

Then faith also considers the amazing work of Christ as being a clear proof of the Father’s intention to fulfill His word. “He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?”1 Moreover, faith looks back upon the past, for her battles have strengthened her, and her victories have given her courage. She remembers that God has never failed her, that He never once failed any of His children. She recalls times of great peril when deliverance came, hours of awful need when as her day her strength was found, and she cries, “No, I never will be led to think that He can change and leave His servant now. Thus far the Lord has helped me, and He will help me still.”

Thus faith views each promise in its connection with the promise-giver and, because she does so, can with assurance say, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life!”2

1) Romans 8:32
2) Psalm 23:6

C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Remember Your Pastor

Brothers, pray for us.

1 Thessalonians 5:25

This one morning in the year we reserved to remind each reader of the importance of praying for ministers, and we earnestly implore every Christian household to heed this request first uttered by Paul and now repeated by us.

Brothers, our work is solemnly momentous, involving good or ill to thousands; we deal with souls for God on eternal business, and our word is either a savor of life unto life or of death unto death. A very heavy responsibility rests upon us, and it will be no small mercy if at the last we be found clear of the blood of all men. As officers in Christ’s army, we are the special target of the hostility of men and devils; they watch for our faltering and work to trip us at the heels.

Our sacred calling involves us in temptations from which you are exempt; above all it too often draws us away from our personal enjoyment of truth into a ministerial and official consideration of it. We meet with many difficult cases, and our wits are at a quandary; we observe very sad backslidings, and our hearts are wounded; we see millions perishing, and our spirits sink. We wish to encourage you by our preaching; we desire to be a blessing to your children; we long to be useful both to saints and sinners.

Therefore, dear friends, intercede for us with our God. We are miserable men if we miss the help of your prayers, but happy are we if we live in your supplications. You do not look to us but to our Master for spiritual blessings, and yet how many times has He given those blessings through His ministers; ask then, again and again, that we may be the earthen vessels into which the Lord may put the treasure of the Gospel. We, the whole company of missionaries, ministers, and students, do in the name of Jesus beseech you: “Brothers, pray for us.”

C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Protecting His Own

Whoever listens to me will dwell secure
and will be at ease, without dread of disaster.

Proverbs 1:33

Divine love is clearly observable when it shines in the face of judgments. Fair is that single star that smiles through the gaps in the thunderclouds; bright is the oasis that blooms in the wilderness of sand; so fair and so bright is love in the midst of wrath. When the Israelites provoked the Most High by their continued idolatry, He punished them by withholding both dew and rain, so that their land was visited by a sore famine; but while He did this, He took care that His own chosen ones should be secure. If all other brooks are dry, yet shall there be one reserved for Elijah; and when that fails, God shall still preserve for him a place of sustenance. Not only so, the Lord also had a remnant according to the election of grace, who were hidden by fifties in a cave; and though the whole land was subject to famine, yet these fifties in the cave were fed, and fed from Ahab’s table too by His faithful, God-fearing steward, Obadiah.1

Let us from this draw the inference that come what may, God’s people are safe. Let convulsions shake the solid earth, let the skies themselves be torn apart, yet amid the wreck of worlds the believer shall be as secure as in the calmest hour of rest. If God cannot save His people under heaven, He will save them in heaven. If the world becomes too hot to hold them, then heaven shall be the place of their reception and their safety. Be confident then, when you hear of wars and rumors of wars. Let no agitation distress you; don’t be unsettled by fear of evil. Whatever happens on the earth, the believer is sheltered beneath the broad wings of Jehovah and shall be secure. Take your stand upon His promise; rest in His faithfulness, and boldly face the darkest future, for there is nothing in it harmful for you. Your sole concern should be to display to the world the blessedness of taking heed to the voice of wisdom.

1) 1 Kings 18:1-16

C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Christ the Builder

It is he who shall build the temple of the Lord and shall bear royal honor.

Zechariah 6:13

Christ Himself is the builder of His spiritual temple, and He has built it on the mountains of His unchangeable affection, His omnipotent grace, and His infallible truthfulness. But as it was in Solomon’s temple, so in this: The materials need to be prepared. There are the cedars of Lebanon, but they are not framed for the building; they are not cut down and shaped and made into those planks of cedar whose fragrant beauty will make glad the courts of the Lord’s house in paradise. There are also the rough stones still in the quarry, which must be hewn out and squared.

All this is Christ’s own work. Each individual believer is being prepared and polished and made ready for his place in the temple; but Christ’s own hand performs the preparation-work. Afflictions cannot sanctify, except when they are used by Him to fulfill His purpose. Our prayers and efforts cannot make us ready for heaven, apart from the hand of Jesus, who fashions our hearts correctly.

As in the building of Solomon’s temple, where “neither hammer nor axe nor any tool of iron was heard”1 because it all arrived perfectly ready for the exact spot it was to occupy, so is it with the temple that Jesus builds; the preparation is all done on earth. When we reach heaven, there will be no sanctifying us there, no squaring us with affliction, no maturing us with suffering.

No, we must be made ready here—and all that Christ will do He will do now; and when He has done it, we will be ferried by a loving hand across the stream of death and brought to the heavenly Jerusalem, to live as eternal pillars in the temple of our Lord.

Beneath His eye and care,
The edifice shall rise,
Majestic, strong, and fair,
And shine above the skies.

1) 1 Kings 6:7

C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – A Picture of Beauty

You are the most handsome of the sons of men.

Psalm 45:2

The entire person of Christ is like one diamond, and His life in every dimension leaves one lasting impression. He is altogether complete, not only in His various parts, but as a gracious all-glorious whole. His character is not a mass of bright colors mixed confusedly, nor a heap of precious stones laid carelessly on top of each other; He is a picture of beauty and a breastplate of glory. In Him, all the things of good repute are in their proper places and assist in adorning each other. Not one feature in His glorious person attracts attention at the expense of others; but He is perfectly and altogether lovely.

Oh, Jesus, Your power, Your grace, Your justice, Your tenderness, Your truth, Your majesty, and Your immutability combine to make a man, or rather a God-man, whom neither heaven nor earth has ever seen elsewhere. Your infancy, Your eternity, Your sufferings, Your triumphs, Your death, and Your immortality are all woven into one gorgeous tapestry, without seams or tears. You are music without discord; You are all things, and yet not diverse. As all the colors blend into one resplendent rainbow, so all the glories of heaven and earth meet in You and unite so perfectly that there is no one like You in all things; indeed, if all the virtues of the most excellent were bound in one bundle, they could not rival You, mirror of all perfection. You have been anointed with the holy oil, which Your God has reserved for You alone; and as for Your fragrance, it is the holy perfume that cannot be matched even with the chemist’s skill; each spice is fragrant, but the compound is divine.

Oh, sacred symmetry! oh, rare connection

Of many perfects, to make one perfection!

Oh, heavenly music, where all parts do meet

In one sweet strain, to make one perfect sweet!

C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –It Is Good

I am with you always.

Matthew 28:20

It is good that there is One who is always the same and who is always with us. It is good that there is one stable rock amidst the billows of the sea of life. Let us not set our soul’s affections upon rusting, moth-eaten, decaying treasures but set our hearts upon Him who remains faithful forever. Let us not build our house upon the moving quicksands of a deceitful world but base our hopes upon this rock that, amid descending rain and roaring floods, shall stand immovably secure.

My soul, I charge you, lay up your treasure in the only secure cabinet; store your jewels where you can never lose them. Put your all in Christ; set all your affections on His person, all your hope in His merit, all your trust in His efficacious blood, all your joy in His presence, and then you may laugh at loss and defy destruction. Remember that all the flowers in the world’s garden fade by turns, and the day comes when nothing will be left but the black, cold earth and death will soon put out your candle.

How sweet to have the sunlight when the candle is gone! The dark flood must soon roll between you and all you have; so join your heart to Him who will never leave you; trust Him who will go with you through the surging current of death’s stream and who will bring you safely to the celestial shore and have you sit with Him in heavenly places forever. In the sorrows of affliction, tell your secrets to the Friend who sticks closer than a brother. Trust all your concerns to Him who can never be taken from you, who will never leave you, and who will never let you leave Him, even “Jesus Christ [who] is the same yesterday and today and forever.”1 “I am with you always” is enough for my soul to live upon no matter who forsakes me.

1) Hebrews 13:8

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Raised from the Dead

But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead.

1 Corinthians 15:20

The whole system of Christianity rests upon the fact that “Christ has been raised from the dead;” for “If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain” (verse 14).

The divinity of Christ finds its surest proof in His resurrection, since He was “declared to be the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his resurrection from the dead.”1 It would not be unreasonable to doubt His Deity if He had not risen. Furthermore, Christ’s sovereignty depends upon His resurrection: “For to this end Christ died and lived again, that he might be Lord both of the dead and of the living.”2 Again, our justification, that choice blessing of the covenant, is linked with Christ’s triumphant victory over death and the grave, for He “was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.”3

More than this, our very regeneration is connected with His resurrection, for we are “born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”4 And most certainly our ultimate resurrection rests here, for “If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.”5 If Christ is not risen, then we will not rise; but if He is risen, then those who are asleep in Christ have not perished but in their flesh shall surely see God. In this way the silver thread of resurrection runs through all the believer’s blessings, from his regeneration onward to his eternal glory, and ties them all together. How important for believers is this glorious fact, and how they rejoice that beyond a doubt it is established, that “in fact Christ has been raised from the dead.”

The promise is fulfill’d,
Redemption’s work is done,
Justice with mercy’s reconciled,
For God has raised His Son.

1) Romans 1:4
2) Romans 14:9
3) Romans 4:25
4) 1 Peter 1:3
5) Romans 8:11

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Then and Now

Many followed him, and he healed them all.

Matthew 12:15

What a variety of sickness must have been presented to the gaze of Jesus! Yet we do not read that He was disgusted but patiently waited on every case. What a combination of evils must have met at His feet! What sickening ulcers and putrefying sores! Yet He was ready for every new shape of the monster of evil and was victor over it in every form. Wherever the arrow landed, He quenched its fiery power. Fevers, lameness, sadness, or the cold of dropsy; the lethargy of madness, leprosy, and blindness—all knew the power of His word and fled at His command. In every aspect of the battle He was triumphant over evil and received the homage of delivered captives. He came, He saw, He conquered everywhere.

It is still the case today. Whatever my own condition may be, the beloved Physician can heal me; and whatever may be the state of others whom I may remember at this moment in prayer, I may have hope in Jesus that He will be able to heal them of their sins. My child, my friend, my dearest one—I can have hope for each, for all, when I remember the healing power of my Lord; and on my own account, however severe my struggle with sins and infirmities, I can still rejoice and be confident. He who on earth walked the hospitals still dispenses His grace and works wonders among the sons of men: Let me go to Him immediately and earnestly.

Let me praise Him this morning as I remember how He worked His spiritual cures, which brings Him the most renown. It was by taking upon Himself our sicknesses. “With his stripes we are healed.”1 The church on earth is full of souls healed by our beloved Physician; and the inhabitants of heaven confess that “he healed them all.”

Come, then, my soul, declare far and wide the virtue of His grace, and “it shall make a name for the LORD, an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”2

1) Isaiah 53:5
2) Isaiah 55:13

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Tempted by Idols?

Can man make for himself gods?
Such are not gods!

Jeremiah 16:20

One great besetting sin of ancient Israel was idolatry, and the church is vexed with a tendency to the same folly. The ancient gods of man’s invention have mostly disappeared, but the shrines of pride are not forsaken, and the golden calf still stands. Self makes an empty display, and the flesh sets up its altars wherever it can find space for them. Favorite children are often the cause of much sin in believers; the Lord is grieved when He sees us doting upon them beyond measure; they will live to be as great a curse to us as Absalom was to David, or they will be taken from us to leave our homes desolate. If Christians desire to grow thorns with which to stuff their sleepless pillows, let them dote on their children.

It is accurate to say that “such are not gods,” for the objects of our foolish love are very doubtful blessings, the solace that they yield us now is dangerous, and the help that they can give us in the hour of trouble is small indeed. Why, then, are we so bewitched with vanities? We pity the poor heathen who worships a god of stone, and yet we worship a god of gold. Where is the vast superiority between a god of flesh and one of wood? The principle, the sin, the folly is the same in either case; the only difference is that our crime is more aggravated because we have more light, and sin in the face of it. The heathen bows to a false deity, but the true God he has never known; we commit two evils, inasmuch as we forsake the living God and turn to idols. May the Lord purge us all from this grievous iniquity!

The dearest idol I have known,
Whate’er that idol be;
Help me to tear it from Thy throne,
And worship only Thee
.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Expect Trouble

In the world you will have tribulation.

John 16:33

Are you asking why this should be, believer? Look upward to your heavenly Father, and behold Him pure and holy. Do you know that you are one day to be like Him? Will you easily be conformed to His image? Will you not require much refining in the furnace of affliction to purify you? Will it be an easy thing to get rid of your corruptions and make you perfect even as your Father in heaven is perfect?

Next, Christian, turn your eye downward. Do you know what foes you have beneath your feet? You were once a servant of Satan, and no king will willingly lose his subjects. Do you think that Satan will leave you alone? No, he will always be at you, for he “prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”1 Expect trouble, then, Christian, when you look beneath you.

Then look around you. Where are you? You are in enemy country, a stranger and an alien. The world is not your friend. If it is, then you are not God’s friend, for whoever is the friend of the world is the enemy of God. Be certain that you will find enemies everywhere. When you sleep, remember that you are resting on the battlefield; when you travel, suspect an ambush in every hedge. As mosquitoes are said to bite strangers more than natives, so the trials of earth will be sharpest to you.

Lastly, look within you, into your own heart, and observe what is there. Sin and self are still within. If you had no devil to tempt you, no enemies to fight you, and no world to ensnare you, you would still find in yourself enough evil to be a sore trial to you, for “the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick.”2 Expect trouble then, but do not despair on account of it, for God is with you to help and to strengthen you. He has said, “call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me.”3

1) 1 Peter 5:8
2) Jeremiah 17:9
3) Psalm 50:15

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Are You a Grumbler?

And all the people of Israel grumbled.

 Numbers 14:2

There are grumblers among Christians now, just as there were in the camp of Israel of old. There are those who, when punished, cry out against the affliction. They ask, “Why am I afflicted? What have I done to be chastened in this manner?”

A word with you, grumbler! Why should you grumble against the dealings of your heavenly Father? Can He treat you more severely than you deserve? Consider what a rebel you once were, but He has pardoned you! Surely, if He in His wisdom considers it necessary to chasten you, you should not complain. After all, are you punished as severely as your sins deserve? Consider the corruption that is in your heart, and then will you wonder that so much of the rod is necessary to root it out? Weigh yourself, and discern how much dross is mingled with your gold; and do you think the fire is too hot to purge away the amount of dross you have? Doesn’t your proud rebellious spirit prove that your heart is not thoroughly sanctified? Aren’t those grumbling words contrary to the holy, submissive nature of God’s children? Isn’t the correction necessary?

But if you will grumble against the chastening, pay attention, for it will go hard with grumblers. God always chastises His children twice if they do not respond properly the first time. But know this—“He does not willingly afflict or grieve the children of men.”1 All His corrections are sent in love, to purify you and to draw you nearer to Himself. Surely it must help you to bear the chastening with submission if you are able to recognize your Father’s hand. “For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.”2 “. . . nor grumble the way some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer.”3

1) Lamentations 3:33
2) Hebrews 12:6
3) 1 Corinthians 10:10

One-Year Bible Reading Plan

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –An Explanation of Trials

You are my refuge in the day of disaster.

 Jeremiah 17:17

The path of the Christian is not always bright with sunshine; he has his seasons of darkness and of storm. It is true that God’s Word says, “Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace”;1 and it is a great truth that faith is calculated to give a man happiness below as well as bliss above. But life confirms that if the experience of the righteous is “like the light of dawn, which shines brighter and brighter until full day,”2 sometimes that light is eclipsed. At certain periods clouds cover the believer’s sun, and he walks in darkness and sees no light.

There are many who have rejoiced in the presence of God for a season; they have basked in the sunshine in the early stages of their Christian life; they have walked along the “green pastures” by the side of the “still waters.” But suddenly they find that the glorious sky is clouded; instead of the promised land they have to endure the wilderness; in place of sweet waters, they find troubled streams, bitter to their taste, and they say, “Surely, if I were a child of God, this would not happen.” Do not say that if you are walking in darkness. The best of God’s saints must drink the bitter potion; the dearest of His children must bear the cross. No Christian has enjoyed perpetual prosperity; no believer can always keep his heart in constant tune.

Perhaps the Lord gave you in the beginning a smooth and unclouded path because you were weak and timid. He moderated the wind on account of your weakness, but now that you are stronger in the spiritual life, you must enter upon the riper and rougher experience of God’s full-grown children. We need winds and tempests to exercise our faith, to tear off the rotten branches of self-reliance, and to root us more firmly in Christ. The day of evil reveals to us the value of our glorious hope.

1) Proverbs 3:17
2) Proverbs 4:18

One-Year Bible Reading Plan

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Our Fault

God, our God, shall bless us.

 Psalm 67:6

It is strange how little use we make of the spiritual blessings that God gives us, but it is even stranger that we make such little use of God Himself. Though He is “our God,” we scarcely give ourselves to Him, and we ask so little of Him.

How seldom do we seek counsel at the hands of the Lord! How often do we go about our business without seeking His guidance! In our troubles how we constantly struggle to bear our burdens ourselves instead of casting them upon the Lord, that He may sustain us! This is not because we may not, for the Lord seems to say, “I am yours, soul; come and make use of Me as you will. You may freely come to My store, and the more you come, the more welcome you will be.”

It is our own fault if we do not enjoy the riches of our God. Since you have such a friend, and He invites you, draw from Him daily. Never be wanting while you have a God to go to; never fear or faint while you have God to help you; go to your treasure and take whatever you need—there is all that you can ever want. Learn the divine skill of making God all things to you. He can supply you with everything; or better still, He can be everything to you.

Let me urge you, then, to make use of your God. Make use of Him in prayer. Go to Him often, because He is your God. Will you fail to use such a great privilege? Run to Him; tell Him all your needs. Use Him constantly by faith at all times. If some dark providence has cast a shadow on you, use God as a sun; if some strong enemy has attacked you, find in Jehovah a shield, for He is a sun and shield to His people. If you have lost your way in the mazes of life, use Him as a guide, for He will direct you. Whatever you are, and wherever you are, remember, God is just what you want and just where you want, and that He can do everything you want.

One-Year Bible Reading Plan

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Remember Me

Do this in remembrance of me.

 1 Corinthians 11:24

It appears that Christians may forget Christ! There would be no need for this loving exhortation if there were not a fearful possibility that our memories might prove treacherous. Nor is this an empty notion: It is, sadly too well confirmed in our experience, not as a possibility, but as a lamentable fact. It appears almost impossible that those who have been redeemed by the blood of the dying Lamb and loved with an everlasting love by the eternal Son of God could forget that gracious Savior; but if startling to the ear, sadly it is too apparent to the eye to allow us to deny the crime. Forget Him who never forgot us! Forget Him who poured His blood out for our sins! Forget Him who loved us even to death! Can it be possible? Yes, it is not only possible, but conscience confesses that it is too sadly a fault with all of us that we treat Him as a stranger, like an overnight guest. Instead of Him being a permanent resident in our memories, we treat Him as a visitor. The cross where one would expect that memory would linger and disinterest would be an unknown intruder is desecrated by the feet of forgetfulness.

Doesn’t your conscience say that this is true? Don’t you find yourselves forgetful of Jesus? Some other love steals away your heart, and you are unmindful of Him upon whom your affection ought to be set. Some earthly business engrosses your attention when you ought to be fixed steadily upon the cross. It is the incessant turmoil of the world, the constant attraction of earthly things, that takes the soul away from Christ. While memory works to preserve a poisonous weed, it allows the rose of Sharon to wither. Let us charge ourselves to tie a heavenly forget-me-not around our hearts for Jesus our Beloved, and whatever else we let slip, let us hold tight to Him.

One-Year Bible Reading Plan

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –How Are You Fighting Sin?

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.

 Romans 8:37

We go to Christ for forgiveness, and then too often look to the law for power to fight our sins. Paul issues this rebuke: “O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? . . . Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?”1 Take your sins to Christ’s cross, for the flesh can only be crucified there: We are crucified with Him. The only weapon to fight sin with is the spear that pierced the side of Jesus.

To give an illustration—if you want to overcome an angry temper, how do you go about it? It is very possible that you have never tried the right way of going to Jesus with it. How did I get salvation? I came to Jesus just as I was, and I trusted Him to save me. I must kill my angry temper in the same way. It is the only way in which I can ever kill it. I must go to the cross with it and say to Jesus, “Lord, I trust You to deliver me from it.” This is the only way to give it a deathblow.

Are you covetous? Do you feel the world entangle you? You may struggle against this evil as long as you please, but if it is your besetting sin, you will never be delivered from it in any other way than by the blood of Jesus. Take it to Christ. Tell Him, “Lord, I have trusted You, and Your name is Jesus, for You save Your people from their sins. Lord, this is one of my sins; save me from it!”

Ordinances are nothing without Christ as a means of mortification. Your prayers, and your repentances, and your tears—the whole of them put together—are worth nothing apart from Him. Only Jesus can do helpless sinners good, and helpless saints too. You must be conquerors through Him who has loved you if you will be a conqueror at all. Our laurels must grow among His olives in Gethsemane.

1) Galatians 3:1-3

One-Year Bible Reading Plan

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Exalted with Him

God exalted him.

 Acts 5:31

Jesus, our Lord, who once was crucified, dead, and buried, now sits upon the throne of glory. The highest place that heaven affords is His by undisputed right. It is vital and helpful to remember that the exaltation of Christ in heaven is a representative exaltation. He is exalted at the Father’s right hand, and though as Jehovah He had eminent glories, in which finite creatures cannot share, yet as the Mediator, the honors that Jesus wears in heaven are the heritage of all the saints.

It is delightful to think of how close Christ’s union is with His people. We are actually one with Him; we are members of His body; and His exaltation is our exaltation. He will allow us to sit upon His throne, even as He has overcome and is seated with His Father on His throne. He has a crown, and He gives us crowns too. He has a throne, but He is not content with having a throne to Himself; on His right hand there must be His queen, dressed in fine gold. He cannot be glorified without His bride.

Look up, believer, to Jesus now. Let the eye of your faith see Him with many crowns upon His head; and remember that one day you will be like Him, when you will see Him as He is. You shall not be as great as He is, you will not be as divine; but you will, in some measure, share the same honors and enjoy the same happiness and the same dignity that He possesses. Be content to live unknown for a little while and to walk your weary way through the fields of poverty or up the hills of affliction; for soon enough you will reign with Christ, for He has “made [us] a kingdom and priests to our God,” and we shall reign forever and ever.1

What a wonderful thought for the children of God! We have Christ for our glorious representative in heaven’s courts right now, and soon He will come and receive us to Himself, to be with Him there, to see His glory and to share His joy.

1) Revelation 5:10

One-Year Bible Reading Plan

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –Not Far from Home

. . . That through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death.

 Hebrews 2:14

Child of God, death has lost its sting, because the devil’s power over it is destroyed. Stop fearing death! Ask God the Holy Spirit to grant you an intimate knowledge and a firm belief in your Redeemer’s death, so that you may be strengthened for that journey. Living near the cross of Calvary, you may learn to think of death with pleasure and welcome it when it comes with intense delight. It is blessed to die in the Lord: It is a covenant blessing to sleep in Jesus. Death is no longer banishment; it is a return from exile, a going home to the many mansions where the loved ones are already living. The distance between glorified spirits in heaven and militant saints on earth seems great; but it is not.

We are not far from home—a moment will bring us there. The sail is spread; the soul is launched upon the deep. How long will its voyage be? How many weary winds must beat upon the sail before it shall be berthed in the port of peace? How long shall that soul be buffeted on the waves before it comes to that sea that knows no storm? Listen to the answer: “away from the body and at home with the Lord.”1 The ship has just departed, but it is already at its destination. It simply spread its sail, and it was there. Like that ship of old upon the Lake of Galilee, a storm had tossed it, but Jesus said, “Peace, be still,” and immediately it came to land. Do not think that a long period intervenes between the instant of death and the eternity of glory. When the eyes close on earth, they open in heaven. The chariots of fire are not an instant on the road.

So child of God, what is there for you to fear in death, seeing that through the death of your Lord Jesus its curse and sting are destroyed? And now it is like a Jacob’s ladder with its base in a dark grave, but with its top reaching to everlasting glory.

1) 2 Corinthians 5:8

One-Year Bible Reading Plan

http://www.truthforlife.org