The Basin of God’s Grace

The blood of Jesus, God’s Son, cleanses us from every sin. 1 JOHN 1:7

John tells us, “We are being cleansed from every sin by the blood of Jesus.” In other words, we are always being cleansed. The cleansing is not a promise for the future but a reality in the present. Let a speck of dust fall on the soul of a saint, and it is washed away. Let a spot of filth land on the heart of God’s child, and the filth is wiped away.…

Our Savior kneels down and gazes upon the darkest acts of our lives. But rather than recoil in horror, he reaches out in kindness and says, “I can clean that if you want.” And from the basin of his grace, he scoops a palm full of mercy and washes away our sin.

But that’s not all he does. Because he lives in us, you and I can do the same. Because he has forgiven us, we can forgive others.

Just Like Jesus

FREE TO ENTER HIS PRESENCE

Then Jesus cried in a loud voice and died. The curtain in the Temple was torn into two pieces, from the top to the bottom. MARK 15:37–38

It’s as if the hands of heaven had been gripping the veil, waiting for this moment. Keep in mind the size of the curtain—sixty feet tall and thirty feet wide. One instant it was whole; the next it was ripped in two from top to bottom. No delay. No hesitation.

What did the torn curtain mean? For the Jews it meant no more barrier between them and the Holy of Holies. No more priests to go between them and God. No more animal sacrifices to atone for their sins.

And for us? What did the torn curtain signify for us?

We are welcome to enter into God’s presence—any day, any time. God has removed the barrier that separates us from him. The barrier of sin? Down. He has removed the curtain.

from HE CHOSE THE NAILS

Divine Power–Divine Nature

“According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” (2 Peter 1:3-4)

Certain passages of Scripture simply take one’s breath away. Our text for today is just such a passage. To those He has called, God has promised “all things that pertain unto life and godliness.” He has provided all that we need to live godly and productive lives. It is “his divine power” (emphatic in the Greek text), imparted to us in the person of the indwelling Holy Spirit, which makes this possible.

In order to properly utilize our resources, we must continue to grow in “the |full| knowledge of him.” Only then can we attain any measure of His “glory and virtue.” He has empowered us to reflect His glorious character and virtuous acts as we know who He is and what He has done. In so doing, we are “partakers of the divine nature” (also emphatic in the Greek).

Initially, of course, at the point of salvation we are given the Holy Spirit, always present in the life of a believer. As we increase in the knowledge of Him and yield to the work of the Spirit, our nature is ever more conformed to the divine nature of Jesus Christ.

This appropriation of divine power to sample the divine nature comes to us through “exceeding great and precious promises” bestowed by His glory and virtue. Since God has promised, these promises are sure, and through them we have “escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” JDM

Do not be surprised at the ordeal that has come to test you…

“Beloved, do not be surprised at the ordeal that has come to test you… you are sharing what Christ suffered; so rejoice in it.” (1 Peter 4:12.)

MANY a waiting hour was needful to enrich the harp of David, and many a waiting hour in the wilderness will gather for us a psalm of “thanksgiving, and the voice of melody,” to cheer the hearts of fainting ones here below, and to make glad our Father’s house on high. What was the preparation of the son of Jesse for the songs like unto which none other have ever sounded on this earth?

The outrage of the wicked, which brought forth cries for God’s help. Then the faint hope in God’s goodness blossomed into a song of rejoicing for His mighty deliverances and manifold mercies. Every sorrow was another string to his harp; every deliverance another theme for praise.

One thrill of anguish spared, one blessing unmarked or unprized, one difficulty or danger evaded, how great would have been our loss in that thrilling Psalmody in which God’s people today find the expression of their grief or praise!

To wait for God, and to suffer His will, is to know Him in the fellowship of His sufferings, and to be conformed to the likeness of His Son. So now, if the vessel is to be enlarged for spiritual understanding, be not affrighted at the wider sphere of suffering that awaits you. The Divine capacity of sympathy will have a more extended sphere, for the breathing of the Holy Ghost in the new creation never made a stoic, but left the heart’s affection tender and true.—Anna Shipton.

“He tested me ere He entrusted me.” (1 Tim. 1:12.) (Way’s Trans.)

Satisfied and full

“And she did eat, and was sufficed, and left.” Ruth 2:14

Whenever we are privileged to eat of the bread which Jesus gives, we are, like Ruth, satisfied with the full and sweet repast. When Jesus is the host no guest goes empty from the table. Our head is satisfied with the precious truth which Christ reveals; our heart is content with Jesus, as the altogether lovely object of affection; our hope is satisfied, for whom have we in heaven but Jesus? and our desire is satiated, for what can we wish for more than “to know Christ and to be found in Him”?

Jesus fills our conscience till it is at perfect peace; our judgment with persuasion of the certainty of His teachings; our memory with recollections of what He has done, and our imagination with the prospects of what He is yet to do. As Ruth was “sufficed, and left,” so is it with us. We have had deep draughts; we have thought that we could take in all of Christ; but when we have done our best we have had to leave a vast remainder. We have sat at the table of the Lord’s love, and said, “Nothing but the infinite can ever satisfy me; I am such a great sinner that I must have infinite merit to wash my sin away;” but we have had our sin removed, and found that there was merit to spare; we have had our hunger relieved at the feast of sacred love, and found that there was a redundance of spiritual meat remaining.

There are certain sweet things in the Word of God which we have not enjoyed yet, and which we are obliged to leave for awhile; for we are like the disciples to whom Jesus said, “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.” Yes, there are graces to which we have not attained; places of fellowship nearer to Christ which we have not reached; and heights of communion which our feet have not climbed. At every banquet of love there are many baskets of fragments left. Let us magnify the liberality of our glorious Boaz.

Take good care of thy faith

“Strong in faith.” Romans 4:20

Christian, take good care of thy faith; for recollect faith is the only way whereby thou canst obtain blessings. If we want blessings from God, nothing can fetch them down but faith. Prayer cannot draw down answers, from God’s throne except it be the earnest prayer of the man who believes. Faith is the angelic messenger between the soul and the Lord Jesus in glory.

Let that angel be withdrawn, we can neither send up prayer, nor receive the answers.

Faith is the telegraphic wire which links earth and heaven—on which God’s messages of love fly so fast, that before we call He answers, and while we are yet speaking He hears us. But if that telegraphic wire of faith be snapped, how can we receive the promise? Am I in trouble?—I can obtain help for trouble by faith. Am I beaten about by the enemy?—my soul on her dear Refuge leans by faith. But take faith away—in vain I call to God. There is no road betwixt my soul and heaven.

In the deepest wintertime faith is a road on which the horses of prayer may travel—ay, and all the better for the biting frost; but blockade the road, and how can we communicate with the Great King? Faith links me with divinity. Faith clothes me with the power of God. Faith engages on my side the omnipotence of Jehovah.

Faith ensures every attribute of God in my defence. It helps me to defy the hosts of hell. It makes me march triumphant over the necks of my enemies. But without faith how can I receive anything of the Lord? Let not him that wavereth—who is like a wave of the Sea— expect that he will receive anything of God! O, then, Christian, watch well thy faith; for with it thou canst win all things, however poor thou art, but without it thou canst obtain nothing. “If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.”