Bible Top 1000

The Dilemma Of Obedience
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"And Samuel feared to shew Eli the vision."

1 Samuel 3:15

God never speaks to us in startling ways, but in ways that are easy to misunderstand, and we say, "I wonder if that's God's voice?" Isaiah said that the Lord spake to him "with a strong hand," that is, by the pressure of circumstances. Nothing touches our lives but it's God Himself speaking. Nothing touches our lives but it's God Himself speaking. And, no I didn't make a mistake by typing the same sentence again! Do we discern His hand or only mere occurrence? Let's get into the habit of saying, "Speak, Lord," and life will become a romance. Every time circumstances press, let's say, "Speak, Lord"; and, let's make time to listen. Chastening is more than a means of discipline, it's meant to get me to the place of saying, "Speak, Lord." Let's recall the time when God did speak to us. Have we forgotten what He said? Was it Luke 11:13, or was it 1 Thess. 5:23? As we listen, our ear gets acute, and, like Jesus, we shall hear God all the time. Shall I tell my "Eli" what God has shown to me? That's where the dilemma of obedience comes in. We disobey God by becoming amateur providences---I must shield "Eli," the best people we know. God didn't tell Samuel to tell Eli; he had to decide that for himself. God's call to us may hurt our "Eli;" but if we try to prevent the suffering in another life, it'll prove an obstruction between our soul and God. It's at our own peril that we prevent the cutting off of the right hand or the plucking out of the eye. Never ask the advice of another about anything God makes you decide before Him.
If you ask advice, you will nearly always side with Satan.
"Immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood."

Do We See Our Calling?

"Separated unto the Gospel."
(Romans 1:1)

Our calling isn't primarily to be holy men and women, but to be proclaimers of the Gospel of God. The one thing that's all important is that the Gospel of God should be realized as the abiding Reality. Reality isn't human goodness, nor holiness, nor heaven, nor hell; but Redemption; and the need to perceive this is the most vital need of the Christian worker to-day. As workers we have to get used to the revelation that Redemption is the only Reality. Personal holiness is an effect, not a cause, and if we place our faith in human goodness, in the effect of Redemption, we shall go under when the test comes. Paul didn't say he separated himself, but - "when it pleased God who separated me. . ." Paul hadn't a hypersensitive interest in his own character. As long as our eyes are upon our own personal whiteness we'll never get near the reality of Redemption. Workers break down because their desire is for their own "whiteness", and not for God. "Don't ask me to come into contact with the rugged reality of Redemption on behalf of the filth of human life as it is; what I want is: anything God can do for me to make me more desirable in my own eyes." To talk in that way is a sign that the reality of the Gospel of God has not begun to touch me; there's no reckless abandon to God. God can't "deliver me" while my interest is merely in my own character. Paul is unconscious of himself, he's recklessly abandoned, separated by God for one purpose---to proclaim the Gospel of God (cf. Rom. 9:3.)

"Let's Just Praise The Lord"!

"O that men would praise the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men."- Psalm 107:8

If we complained less, and praised more, we should be happier, and God would be more glorified. Let's daily praise God for "common mercies"---common as we frequently call them, and yet so priceless, that when deprived of them we're ready to "perish". Let's bless God for the eyes with which we behold the sun, for the health and strength to walk abroad, for the bread we eat, for the raiment we wear. Let's praise Him that we're not cast out among the hopeless, or confined amongst the guilty; let's thank Him for liberty, for friends, for family associations and comforts; let's praise Him, in fact, for everything which we receive from His bounteous hand, for we deserve little, and yet are most plenteously endowed. But the sweetest and the loudest note in our songs of praise should be of redeeming love. God's redeeming acts towards His chosen are forever the favorite themes of their praise. If we know what redemption means, let's not withhold our sonnets of thanksgiving! We've been redeemed from the power of our corruptions, uplifted from the depth of sin in which we were "naturally plunged". We've been led to the cross of Christ---our shackles of guilt have been broken off; we're no longer slaves, but children of the living God, and can antedate the period when we shall be presented before the throne without spot or wrinkle or any such thing. Even now by faith we "wave the palm-branch" and wrap ourselves about with the fair linen which is to be our everlasting array, and shall we not unceasingly give thanks to the Lord our Redeemer? How can we be silent ?
"...Awake, awake, ye heritors of glory, and lead your captivity captive..." Let's cry with David, "Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless His holy name."

Let the new month begin with new songs!