Tag Archives: charles spurgeon

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – God’s Chosen Servants

You are my servant, I have chosen you.

Isaiah 41:9

If we have received the grace of God in our hearts, its practical effect has been to make us God’s servants. We may be unfaithful servants, we certainly are unprofitable ones, but yet, blessed be His name, we are His servants, wearing His uniform, eating at His table, and obeying His commands. We were once the servants of sin, but He who made us free has now taken us into His family and taught us obedience to His will. We do not serve our Master perfectly, but we would if we could. As we hear God’s voice saying unto us, “You are My servant,” we can answer with David, “I am your servant. . . . You have loosed my bonds.”1

But the Lord calls us not only His servants, but His chosen ones—“I have chosen you.” We have not chosen Him first, but He has chosen us. If we are now God’s servants, it wasn’t always so; the change must be ascribed to sovereign grace. The eye of sovereignty singled us out, and the voice of unchanging grace declared, “I have loved you with an everlasting love.”2 Long before time began or space was created, God had written upon His heart the names of His elect people, had predestinated them to be conformed unto the image of His Son, and ordained them heirs of all the fullness of His love, His grace, and His glory.

What comfort is here! Having loved us for so long, will the Lord then reject us? He knew how stiff-necked we would be, He understood that our hearts were evil, and yet He made the choice. Our Savior is no fickle lover. He does not feel enchanted for a while with some gleams of beauty from His church’s eye and then afterwards reject her because of her unfaithfulness. No, He married her in old eternity; and He hates divorce! The eternal choice is a bond upon our gratitude and upon His faithfulness, which neither can disown.

1) Psalm 116:16
2) Jeremiah 31:3

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg. 

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – With Jesus at Our Side

Come, my beloved, let us go out into the fields … Let us … See whether the vines have budded.

Song of Songs 7:11-12

The bride was about to engage in hard work and desired her beloved’s company in it. She does not say, “I will go,” but “let us go.” In like fashion, it is a blessing to work when Jesus is at our side! It is the business of God’s people to be trimmers of God’s vines. Like our first parents, we are put into the garden of the Lord for usefulness; let us then go out into the fields.

When God’s people are thinking properly, they desire to enjoy communion with Christ. Some may imagine that they cannot serve Christ actively and still have fellowship with Him; they are mistaken. There is no doubt that we may easily neglect our inward life in outward exercises and be forced to say, “They made me keeper of the vineyards, but my own vineyard have I not kept!”1 There is no reason why this should be the case except for our own foolishness and neglect. It is certain that a professing Christian may do nothing and end up just as lifeless in spiritual things as those who are most busy.

Mary was not praised for sitting still, but for her sitting at Jesus’ feet. Even so, Christians are not to be praised for neglecting duties under the pretense of having secret fellowship with Jesus: It is not sitting, but sitting at Jesus’ feet that is commendable. Do not think that activity is in itself an evil: It is a great blessing and a means of grace to us. Paul called it a grace given to him to be allowed to preach; and every form of Christian service may become a personal blessing to those engaged in it. Those who have most fellowship with Christ are not recluses or hermits, who have time on their hands, but tireless workers who are toiling for Jesus and who, in their endeavor, have Him side by side with them, so that they are workers together with God.

Let us remember then, in anything we have to do for Jesus, we can do it and should do it in close communion with Him.

1) Song of Solomon 1:6

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg. 

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Tested and Battered

All the days of my service I would wait.

Job 14:14

Ashort stay on earth will make heaven more heavenly. Nothing makes rest so enjoyable as work; nothing renders security so pleasant as exposure to danger. The bitter cups of earth will give a relish to the new wine that sparkles in the golden bowls of heaven. Our battered armor and scarred countenances will render more glorious our victory above, when we are welcomed to the seats of those who have overcome the world.

We would not have full fellowship with Christ if we did not sojourn for a while below, for He was baptized with a baptism of suffering among men, and we must be baptized with the same if we would share His kingdom. Fellowship with Christ is so honorable that the sorest sorrow is a light price by which to procure it.

Another reason for our lingering here is for the good of others. We would not wish to enter heaven till our work is done, and it may be that we still have a part to play shining as light in the dark wilderness of sin.

Our prolonged stay here is doubtless for God’s glory. A tested saint, like a well-cut diamond, glitters much in the King’s crown. Nothing reflects so much honor on a workman as a protracted and severe trial of his work and his triumphant endurance of the ordeal without giving in or giving up. We are God’s workmanship, and He will be glorified by our afflictions. It is for the honor of Jesus that we endure the trial of our faith with sacred joy. Let each man surrender his own longings to the glory of Jesus and declare: “If my lying in the dust would elevate my Lord by so much as an inch, let me still lie among the pots of earth. If to live on earth forever would make my Lord more glorious, it should be my heaven to be shut out of heaven.”

Our time is fixed and settled by eternal decree. Let us not be anxious about it, but wait with patience until the gates of pearl shall open.

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg. 

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Find Wisdom

Whoever gives thought to the word will discover good, and blessed is he who trusts in the Lord.

Proverbs 16:20

Wisdom is man’s true strength; and under its guidance he is best able to find and fulfill his reason for living. Wisely handling the matter of life gives to man the richest enjoyment and presents the noblest occupation for his powers; and in this way he finds good in the fullest sense.

Without wisdom, man is like a wild donkey running here and there, wasting strength that might have been profitably employed. Wisdom is the compass by which man is to steer across the trackless waste of life; without it he is a derelict vessel, the victim of winds and waves. A man must be prudent in such a world as this or he will find no good, but will be betrayed into unnumbered ills. The pilgrim will sorely wound his feet among the briers of the wood of life if he does not pick his steps with the utmost caution. He who is in a wilderness infested with thieves must handle matters wisely if he would journey safely.

If, trained by the Great Teacher, we will follow where He leads, we will find good even in the darkness, and celestial fruits to be tasted, and songs of paradise to be sung amid the groves of earth. But where shall this wisdom be found? Many have dreamed of it without possessing it. Where will we learn it? Let us listen to the voice of the Lord, for He has declared the secret. He has revealed to the sons of men where true wisdom lies, and we have it in the text, “blessed is he who trusts in the LORD.” The true way to handle a matter wisely is to trust in the Lord. This is the sure clue to the most intricate labyrinths of life; follow it and find eternal bliss. He who trusts in the Lord has a diploma for wisdom granted by inspiration: Happy is he now, and happier he shall be above.

Lord, in this sweet evening walk with me in the garden, and teach me the wisdom of faith.

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg. 

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Our Royal Nature

You have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable.

1 Peter 1:23

Peter earnestly exhorted the scattered saints to love each other “earnestly from a pure heart” (verse 22), and he did so not on the basis of the law or human nature or philosophy, but from that high and divine nature that God has implanted in His people. In the same way that a sensible tutor of princes might seek to foster in them a kingly spirit and dignified behavior, finding arguments in their position and pedigree, so, looking upon God’s people as heirs of glory, princes of royal blood, descendants of the King of kings, earth’s truest and oldest aristocracy, Peter said to them in essence, “See that you love one another because of your noble birth, being born of imperishable seed, because of your pedigree, being descended from God, the Creator of all things, and because of your immortal destiny, for you shall never pass away, though the glory of the flesh shall fade and even its existence shall cease.”

We would do well if, in the spirit of humility, we recognized the true dignity of our regenerated nature and lived up to it. What is a Christian? If you compare him with a king, he adds priestly sanctity to royal dignity. The king’s royalty often lies only in his crown, but with a Christian it is infused into his inmost nature. He is as much above his fellows through his new birth as a man is above the beast that perishes. Surely he shall conduct himself in all his dealings as one who is different from the crowd, chosen out of the world, distinguished by sovereign grace, part of God’s “peculiar people.”1

Such trophies of God’s grace cannot grovel in the dust like some, nor live in the fashion of the world’s citizens. Let the dignity of your nature and the brightness of your prospects, O believers in Christ, constrain you to hold fast to holiness and to avoid the very appearance of evil.

1) Titus 2:14, KJV

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Go to Jesus

A very present help.

Psalm 46:1

Covenant blessings are not meant only to be observed but to be appropriated. Even our Lord Jesus is given to us for our present use. Believer, you do not make use of Christ as you ought to do. When you are in trouble, why do you not tell Him all your grief? Does He not have a sympathizing heart, and can He not comfort and relieve you? No, you are going to all your friends, except your best Friend, and telling your story everywhere, except into the heart of your Lord.

Are you burdened with this day’s sins? Here is a fountain filled with blood: Use it, saint, use it. Has a sense of guilt returned upon you? The pardoning grace of Jesus may be proved again and again. Come to Him at once for cleansing. Do you deplore your weakness? He is your strength: Why not lean upon Him? Do you feel naked? Come here, soul; put on the robe of Jesus’ righteousness. Do not stand looking at it, but wear it. Strip off your own righteousness, and your own fears too: Put on the fair white linen, for it was meant to be worn.

Do you feel yourself sick? Call upon the Beloved Physician, and He will give the medicine that will revive you. You are poor, but remember you have a kinsman, who is incredibly wealthy. What! Will you not go to Him and ask Him to give you from His abundance when He has promised that you will be joint heir with Him and has credited all that He is and all that He has to your account? There is nothing Christ dislikes more than for His people to make a show of coming to Him and yet not to use Him. He loves to be employed by us. The more burdens we put on His shoulders, the more precious He will be to us.

Let us be simple with Him, then,
Not backward, stiff, or cold,
As though our Bethlehem could be
What Sinai was of old.

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg. 

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Dying in Faith

These all died in faith.

Hebrews 11:13

Consider the epitaph of all those blessed saints who fell asleep before the coming of our Lord! The issue is not how they died—whether of old age or by violent means—but that whatever their diverse experiences, they are united in Him: “These all died in faith.” In faith they lived—it was their comfort, their guide, their motive, and their support; and in the same spiritual grace they died, ending their life-song in the sweet melody that had followed them through life. They did not die trusting in the flesh or their own attainments; they never wavered from their first way of acceptance with God but held to the way of faith to the end. Faith is as precious to die by as to live by.

Dying in faith has distinct reference to the past. They believed the promises that had gone before and were assured that their sins were blotted out through the mercy of God. Dying in faith has to do with the present. These saints were confident of their acceptance with God; they enjoyed the benefits of His love and rested in His faithfulness. Dying in faith looks into the future. They fell asleep, affirming that the Messiah would surely come and that when He in the last days appeared upon the earth, they would rise from their graves to behold Him. To them the pains of death were but the birth-pangs of a better state.

Take courage, my soul, as you read this epitaph. Your journey, through grace, is one of faith, not sight, and this has always been the pathway of the brightest and the best. Faith was the orbit in which these stars of the first magnitude shone in their day; and happy are you to be in their company. Look again tonight to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of your faith, and thank Him for giving you like precious faith with souls now in glory.

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg

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Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Christ’s Comprehensive Love

The Lord takes pleasure in his people.

Psalm 149:4

How comprehensive is the love of Jesus! There is no part of His people’s interests that He does not consider, and there is nothing that concerns their welfare that is not important to Him. He doesn’t merely think of you, believer, as an immortal being, but as a mortal being too. Do not deny it or doubt it: “Even the hairs of your head are all numbered.”1 “The steps of a man are established by the LORD, when he delights in his way.”2

It would be sad for us if this covering of love did not tackle all our concerns, for what mischief might be done to us in that part of our lives that did not come under our gracious Lord’s protection! Believer, rest assured that the heart of Jesus cares about your smallest concerns. The breadth of His tender love is such that you may turn to Him in every case; for in all your afflictions He is afflicted, and just like a father cares for his children, so He cares for you. The smallest interests of all His saints are all borne upon the heart of the Son of God.

And what a heart He has, which does not merely understand the nature of His people but also comprehends their diverse and innumerable concerns. Do you think, Christian, that you can measure the love of Christ? Consider what His love has brought you—justification, adoption, sanctification, eternal life! The riches of His goodness are unsearchable; you will never be able to convey them or even conceive them.

Oh, the breadth of the love of Christ! Shall such a love as this have only half our hearts? Shall it have a cold love in return? Shall Jesus’ marvelous loving-kindness and tender care be met with only faint response and delayed acknowledgment? My soul, tune your harp to a glad song of thanksgiving! Go to your rest rejoicing, for you are not a desolate wanderer but a beloved child, watched over, cared for, supplied, and defended by your Lord.

1) Matthew 10:30
2) Psalm 37:23

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – A Hard Forehead and Stubborn Heart

All the house of Israel have a hard forehead and a stubborn heart.

Ezekiel 3:7

Are there no exceptions? No, not one. Even God’s chosen are described in this way. If the best are so bad, then what must the worst be like? Come, my heart, consider to what extent you share in this universal accusation; as you think, prepare to be ashamed of those things of which you are guilty.

The first charge is impudence, or hardness of forehead, an absence of holy shame, an unholy boldness in evil. Before my conversion, I could sin and feel no regret, hear of my guilt and remain unhumbled, and even confess my iniquity without any accompanying humiliation. When a sinner goes to God’s house and pretends to pray to Him and praise Him, he displays a brazen-facedness of the worst kind! Sadly, since the day of my new birth I have doubted my Lord to His face, murmured unblushingly in His presence, worshiped Him in a slovenly manner, and sinned without bewailing myself on account of it. If my forehead were not like a diamond, harder than flint, I would display more holy fear and a far deeper contrition of spirit. Woe is me, for I am one of the impudent house of Israel.

The second charge is hard-heartedness, and I dare not attempt to plead innocent here. Once I had nothing but a heart of stone, and although through grace I now have a new and fleshy heart, much of my former stubbornness remains. I am not affected by the death of Jesus as I ought to be; neither am I moved as I should be by the lostness of my fellowmen, the wickedness of the times, the chastisement of my heavenly Father, and my own failures. O that my heart would melt at the recital of my Savior’s sufferings and death. Would to God I were rid of this dreadful burden within me, this hateful body of death.

Blessed be the name of the Lord, the disease is not incurable; the Savior’s precious blood is the universal remedy, and it will effectually soften me, even me, until my heart melts as wax before the fire.

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg. 

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Long Live the King!

The Lord is king forever and ever.

Psalm 10:16

Jesus Christ is not a tyrant claiming divine right, but He is really and truly the Lord’s anointed! “For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell.”1 God has given to Him all power and all authority.

As the Son of man, He is now head over all things in His church, and He reigns over heaven and earth and hell with the keys of life and death at His belt. Certain princes have been glad to call themselves kings by the popular will, and certainly our Lord Jesus Christ is such in His church. If it could be put to the vote whether He should be King in the church, every believing heart would crown Him. We ought to crown Him more gloriously than we do! We would regard no expense too great if we could glorify Christ. Suffering would be pleasure, and loss would be gain, if through that we could surround His brow with brighter crowns and make Him more glorious in the eyes of men and angels. Yes, He shall reign. Long live the King! All hail to You, King Jesus! Go on, you virgin souls who love your Lord. Bow at His feet; cover His path with the lilies of your love and the roses of your gratitude: “Bring forth the royal diadem, and crown Him Lord of all.”

Our Lord Jesus is King in Zion by right of conquest: He has taken the hearts of His people by storm and has defeated their enemies who held them in cruel bondage. In the Red Sea of His own blood, our Redeemer has drowned the Pharaoh of our sins: Shall He not be Lord and King? He has delivered us from sin’s dominion and from the heavy curse of the law: Shall not the Liberator be crowned? We are His portion, whom He has taken out of the hand of the enemy with His sword and with His bow: Who will snatch His conquest from His hand? All hail, King Jesus! We gladly own Your gentle sway! Rule in our hearts forever, You lovely Prince of Peace.

1) Colossians 1:19

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg. 

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Dangers of Our Day

Blessed is the one who stays awake.

Revelation 16:15

“Idie every day,”1 said the apostle. This was the life of the early Christians; they went everywhere with their lives in their hands. We are not at this time being called to pass through the same fearful persecutions: if we were, the Lord would give us grace to bear the test. But the tests of Christian life, at the present moment, though outwardly not so terrible, are still more likely to overcome us than even those of the fiery age.

We have to bear the sneer of the world—that is small; its flatteries, its soft words, its oily speeches, its fawning, its hypocrisy are far worse. Our danger is that we might grow rich and become proud; we might give ourselves up to the fashions of this present evil world and lose our faith. Or if wealth does not test us, worldly care is quite as mischievous. If we cannot be torn in pieces by the roaring lion, we may be hugged to death by the bear.

The devil cares very little which it is, as long as he destroys our love for Christ and our confidence in Him. I am afraid that the Christian church is far more likely to lose her integrity in these soft and easy days than in those rougher times. We must stay awake now, for we are crossing enchanted ground and are most likely to fall asleep to our own ruin, unless our faith in Jesus is a reality and our love for Jesus an ardent flame. Many in these days of easy-believism are likely to prove to be tares, and not wheat; hypocrites with attractive masks on their faces, but not the true-born children of the living God.

Christian, do not think that these are times in which you can dispense with watchfulness or with holy ardor; you need these things more than ever, and may God the eternal Spirit display His omnipotence in you, that you may be able to say, in all these softer things as well as in the rougher, “We are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”2

1) 1 Corinthians 15:31
2) Romans 8:37

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – The Sleepless Guardian

You will not fear the terror of the night.

Psalm 91:5

What is this “terror”? It may be the cry of fire or the noise of thieves or intrigued appearances or the shriek of sudden sickness or death. We live in the world of death and sorrow; we may anticipate facing ills and difficulties during the night as well as in the glare of the noonday sun. This should not alarm us, for whatever the terror may be, the promise is that the believer shall not be afraid. Why should he be?

Let us put this more closely—why should we? God our Father is here, and will be with us all through the lonely hours. He is an almighty Watcher, a sleepless Guardian, a faithful Friend. Nothing can happen without His direction, for even hell itself is under His control. Darkness is not dark to Him. He has promised to be a wall of fire around His people—and who can break through such a barrier?

Unbelievers may well be afraid, for they have an angry God above them, a guilty conscience within them, and a yawning hell beneath them. But we who rest in Jesus are saved from all these by His rich mercy. If we give way to foolish fear, we will dishonor our testimony and lead others to doubt the reality of godliness. We ought to be afraid of being afraid, in case we should grieve the Holy Spirit by foolish distrust. Down, then, you dismal forebodings and groundless apprehensions—God has not forgotten to be gracious, nor held back His tender mercies. It may be night in the soul, but there need be no terror, for the God of love does not change.

Children of light may walk in darkness, but they are not therefore cast away. No, they are now enabled to prove their adoption by trusting in their heavenly Father in a way that hypocrites cannot do.

Though the night be dark and dreary,
Darkness cannot hide from Thee;
You are He, who, never weary,
Watchest where Your people be.

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – God’s Right Hand

… Who is at the right hand of God.

Romans 8:34

He who was once despised and rejected by men now occupies the honorable position of a beloved and honored Son. The right hand of God is the place of majesty and favor. Our Lord Jesus is His people’s representative. When He died for them, they had rest; when He rose again for them, they had liberty; when He sat down at His Father’s right hand, they had favor and honor and dignity. The raising and elevation of Christ is the elevation, the acceptance, and the glorifying of all His people, for He is their head and representative. This sitting at the right hand of God, then, is to be viewed as the reception of the Representative and therefore the acceptance of our souls.

Believer, this is why you are free from condemnation. “Who is he that condemneth?” [KJV]. Who will condemn those men who are in Jesus at the right hand of God?

The right hand is the place of power. Christ at the right hand of God has all the power in heaven and on earth. Who will fight against the people who have such power vested in their Captain? My soul, what can destroy you if Omnipotence is your helper? If the protection of the Almighty covers you, what sword can harm you?

Be sure of this: If Jesus is your all-prevailing King and has trampled your enemies beneath His feet, if sin, death, and hell are all defeated by Him, and you are represented in Him, there exists no possibility of your being destroyed.

Jesu’s tremendous name
Puts all our foes to flight:
Jesus, the meek, the angry Lamb,
A Lion is in fight.

By all hell’s host withstood;
We all hell’s host o’erthrow;
And conquering them, through Jesus’ blood
We still to conquer go.

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – The Lord’s Battle

Fight the Lord’s battles.

1 Samuel 18:17

The Christian is involved in a continual war, with Jesus Christ as the Captain of their salvation. He has said, “Behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”1 Listen to the battle cries! Now let the people of God stand firm in their ranks, and let no man’s heart fail him. We may feel in these days that we are losing the battle and unless the Lord Jesus shall lift His sword we do not know what may become of the church of God in our time; but let us be courageous and bold.

Seldom has there been a time like this as biblical Christianity trembles on the brink of capitulation to pluralism and empty religious routine. We are in great need of a bold voice and a strong hand to preach and publish the Gospel for which martyrs bled and confessors died. The Savior is, by His Spirit, still on earth; let this encourage us. He is always ever in the middle of the fight, and therefore the outcome of the battle is not in doubt. And as the conflict rages, what a deep satisfaction it is to know that the Lord Jesus, in His office as our great Intercessor, is prevalently pleading for His people!

Turn your anxious gaze from the battle below, where, enshrouded in smoke, the faithful fight in garments rolled in blood. And lift your eyes above where the Savior lives and pleads, for while He intercedes, the cause of God is safe. Let us fight as if it all depended upon us, but let us look up and know that it all depends upon Him.

On the basis of our Savior’s atoning sacrifice and in the strength of the Holy Spirit’s power, we charge you who love Jesus to fight bravely in this holy war, for truth and righteousness, for the kingdom and the crown. Onward! The battle is not yours but God’s, and you will yet hear Him say, “Well done, brave warrior, well done!”

1) Matthew 28:20

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – The Great Confirmer

The words of the Amen.

Revelation 3:14

The word Amen solemnly confirms what went before, and Jesus is the great Confirmer; immutable forever is “the Amen” in all His promisesSinner, I would comfort you with this reflection. Jesus Christ said, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”1 If you come to Him, He will say “Amen” in your soul; His promise shall be true to you. He said in the days of His flesh, “A bruised reed he will not break.”2 Poor, broken, bruised heart, if you come to Him, He will say “Amen” to you, and it will be true in your soul as in hundreds of cases in years gone by.

Christian, isn’t this very comforting to you also, that there is not a word that has come from the Savior’s lips that He has ever retracted? The words of Jesus will stand when heaven and earth pass away. If you get ahold of but half a promise, you will find it true. Watch out for those who ignore the promises and so miss much of the comfort of God’s Word.

Jesus is Yes and Amen in all His offices. He was a Priest to pardon and cleanse once; He is Amen as Priest still. He was a King to rule and reign for His people and to defend them with His mighty arm; He is an Amen King, the same still. He was a Prophet of old, to foretell good things to come; His words remain trustworthy and true—He is an Amen Prophet. He is Amen as to the merit of His blood; He is Amen as to His righteousness. That sacred robe will remain most fair and glorious when nature shall decay. He is Amen in every single title that He bears; your Husband, never seeking a divorce; your Friend, sticking closer than a brother; your Shepherd, with you in death’s dark vale; your Help and your Deliverer; your Refuge and your Strong Tower; the Vessel of your strength, your confidence, your joy, your all in all, and your Yes and Amen in everything.

1) Matthew 11:28
2) Matthew 12:20

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Lifted Up

Be their shepherd and carry them forever.

Psalm 28:9

God’s people need to be carried. They are very heavy by nature. They have no wings, or if they have, they are like the dove of old that lay among the pots; and they need divine grace to make them rise up on wings covered with silver and with feathers of yellow gold. By nature sparks fly upward, but the sinful souls of men fall downward.

O Lord, “carry them forever”! David himself said, “To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul,”1 and here he feels the necessity that other men’s souls should be lifted up as well as his own. When you ask for this blessing, do not forget to seek it for others also.

There are three ways in which God’s people require to be carried or lifted up. They require to be lifted up in character. Lift them up, Lord; do not allow Your people to be like the rest of the world! The world lies in the wicked one; lift them out of it! The world’s people are looking for silver and gold, seeking their own pleasures and the gratification of their lusts; but, Lord, carry Your people up beyond all this; keep them from being “muck-rakers,” as John Bunyan calls the man who was always scraping for gold! Set their hearts upon their risen Lord and the heavenly heritage!

Moreover, believers need to be carried in conflict. In the battle, if they seem to fall, Lord, be pleased to give them the victory. If the foot of the enemy is upon their necks for a moment, help them to grasp the sword of the Spirit and eventually to win the battle. Lord, lift up Your children’s spirits in the day of conflict; do not let them sit in the dust, mourning forever. Do not allow the adversary to disturb their peace and make them fret; but if they have been, like Hannah, persecuted, let them sing of the mercy of a delivering God.

We may also ask our Lord to carry them at the last! Lift them up by taking them home; carry their bodies from the tomb, and raise their souls to Your eternal kingdom in glory.

1) Psalm 25:1

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – It Is Well …

Isaiah 3:10

It is well with the righteous ALWAYS.

If it had said, “Tell the righteous that it is well with them in their prosperity,” we would be thankful for so great a blessing, for prosperity is an hour of peril. It is a gift from heaven to be safe from its snares. If it had read, “It is well with them when under persecution,” we would be thankful for such a comforting assurance, for persecution is hard to bear; but when no time is mentioned, all time is included.

God’s shalls must always be understood in their largest sense. From the beginning of the year to the end of the year, from the first gathering of evening shadows until a new day dawns, in all conditions and under all circumstances, it will be well with the righteous. It is so well with him that we could not imagine it to be better, for he is well fed—he feeds upon the flesh and blood of Jesus; he is well clothed—he wears the imputed righteousness of Christ; he is well housed—he dwells in God; he is well married—his soul is knit in bonds of marriage to Christ; he is well provided for—for the Lord is his Shepherd; he is well endowed—for heaven is his inheritance. It is well with the righteous—well upon divine authority; the mouth of God speaks the comforting assurance.

O beloved, if God declares that all is well, ten thousand devils may declare it to be ill, but we may laugh them all to scorn. Blessed be God for a faith that enables us to believe God when the creatures contradict Him. It is, says the Word, at all times well with you, righteous one; then, beloved, if you cannot see it, let God’s Word assure you; believe it on divine authority with more confidence than if your eyes and your feelings told it to you. Those God blesses are blessed indeed, and what His lip declares is truth most sure and steadfast.

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – He Was Made Sin

He shall lay his hand on the head of the burnt offering, and it shall be accepted for him to make atonement for him.

Leviticus 1:4

Our Lord’s being “made … sin”1 for us is pictured here by the very significant transfer of sin to the bullock, which was done by the elders of the people. The laying of the hand was not a mere touch of contact, for in some other places of Scripture the original word has the meaning of leaning heavily, as in the expression, “Your wrath lies heavy upon me” (Psalm 88:7).

Surely this is the very essence and nature of faith, which not only brings us into contact with the great Substitute, but also teaches us to lean upon Him with all the burden of our guilt. Jehovah made all the offenses of His covenant people rest upon the Substitute, and each one of the chosen is brought personally to confirm this solemn covenant act, when by grace he is enabled by faith to lay his hand upon the head of the Lamb that was slain before the foundation of the world.

Believer, do you remember that wonderful day when you first realized pardon through Jesus the sin-bearer? Can you make a glad confession and join with the writer in saying, “My soul recalls the day of deliverance with delight. Burdened with guilt and full of fears, I saw my Savior as my Substitute, and I laid my hand upon Him—timidly at first, but courage grew and confidence was confirmed until I leaned my soul entirely upon Him. And now it is my unceasing joy to know that my sins are no longer imputed to me but are laid on Him. Like the debts of the wounded traveler, Jesus, like the good Samaritan, has said of all my future sinfulness, ‘Set that to My account.’”

Blessed discovery! Eternal solace of a grateful heart!

My numerous sins transferr’d to Him,
Shall never more be found,
Lost in His blood’s atoning stream,
Where every crime is drown’d!

1) 2 Corinthians 5:21

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – The King’s Garden

… The king’s garden …

Nehemiah 3:15

Mention of the king’s garden by Nehemiah brings to mind the paradise that the King of kings prepared for Adam. Sin has utterly ruined that delightful dwelling and has driven out the children of men to till the ground, which yields thorns and thistles to them. My soul, remember the Fall, for it was your fall. Weep much because the Lord of love was so shamefully ill treated by the head of the human race, of which you are a member, as undeserving as any. Behold how dragons and demons dwell on this fair earth, which was once a garden of delights.

Look now at another King’s garden, which the King waters with His bloody sweat—Gethsemane, whose bitter herbs are far sweeter to renewed souls than the luscious fruits of Eden. In Gethsemane the mischief of the serpent in the first garden was undone: There the curse was lifted from earth and borne by the woman’s promised seed. My soul, learn to ponder Christ’s agony and passion; visit the garden of the olive-press, and view your great Redeemer rescuing you from your lost condition. This is the garden of gardens; indeed, here the soul may see the guilt of sin and the power of love, two sights that surpass all others.

Is there no other King’s garden? Yes, my heart, or should be. How do the flowers flourish? Do any choice fruits appear? Does the King walk there and rest in the arbor of my spirit? Let me ensure that the plants are trimmed and watered, and the mischievous foxes hunted out. Come, Lord, and let the heavenly wind blow at Your coming, that the spices of Your garden may cast their fragrance everywhere. I must not forget the King’s garden of the church. O Lord, send prosperity to it. Rebuild her walls, nourish her plants, ripen her fruits, and from the huge wilderness reclaim the wasteland and make of it a King’s garden.

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg. 

http://www.truthforlife.org

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Bring Your Sorrows and Sins

Consider my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sins.

Psalm 25:18

It is good for us when prayers about our sorrows are linked with pleas concerning our sins—when, being under God’s hand, we do not focus exclusively on our pain, but remember our sins against God. It is also good to take both sorrow and sin to the same place. It was to God that David carried his sorrow: It was to God that David confessed his sin.

Notice, then, we must take our sorrows to God. Even your little sorrows you may cast upon God, for He counts the hairs of your head; and your great sorrows you may commit to Him, for He holds the ocean in the hollow of His hand. Go to Him, whatever your present trouble may be, and you will find Him able and willing to relieve you. But we must take our sins to God too. We must carry them to the cross, that the blood may fall upon them, to purge away their guilt and to destroy their defiling power.

The special lesson of the text is this: we are to go to the Lord with sorrows and with sins in the right spirit. Note that all David asks concerning his sorrow is, “Consider my affliction and my trouble”; but the next petition is vastly more explicit, definite, decided, plain—“Forgive all my sins.”

Many sufferers would have reversed it: “Remove my affliction and my pain, and consider my sins.” But David does not; he cries, “Lord, when it comes to my affliction and my pain, I will not dictate to Your wisdom. Lord, look at them—I will leave them to You. I would like to have my pain removed, but do as You will. But as for my sins, Lord, I know what needs to happen—I must have them forgiven; I cannot endure to live under their curse for a moment.”

A Christian counts sorrow lighter in the scale than sin; he can bear to have troubles continue, but he cannot bear the burden of his transgressions.

Devotional material is taken from Morning and Evening, written by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

http://www.truthforlife.org