“His Name is Wonderful (Split Track)” by M-G-M Studio Musicians
Bible Couples: Aquila and Priscilla
When Aquila and Priscilla heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately. Acts 18:26
Aquila and Priscilla are mentioned six times in the Bible, and never one without the other. They were a Gospel team. Four of the six times, Priscilla is mentioned first, perhaps indicating the strength of her zeal and personality. The couple had a tent-making business, but their real occupation was evangelistic. They became lifelong friends with the apostle Paul and joined him in his soul-winning efforts. They assisted him in Corinth, joined him in Ephesus, and “risked their necks” for him amid persecution (Romans 16:4). When Apollos came through the area preaching the baptism of John, Priscilla and Aquila pulled him aside and explained to him the Gospel of Jesus Christ more accurately.
God’s best plan for a marriage always involves ministry. He doesn’t bring us together simply to satisfy our own needs. He wants husbands and wives to pray together, attend church together, serve together, win souls together, raise children together, and explain the Gospel to others as accurately as we can.
Marriage is ministry—two lives woven together to accomplish what neither could do alone. May God fill our land with couples like Aquila and Priscilla.
A Single Thought: When we join with others to complete a task, the load is lighter, and the joy is increased.
In that day you will ask Me nothing. —John 16:23
When is “that day”? It is when the ascended Lord makes you one with the Father. “In that day” you will be one with the Father just as Jesus is, and He said, “In that day you will ask Me nothing.” Until the resurrection life of Jesus is fully exhibited in you, you have questions about many things. Then after a while you find that all your questions are gone— you don’t seem to have any left to ask. You have come to the point of total reliance on the resurrection life of Jesus, which brings you into complete oneness with the purpose of God. Are you living that life now? If not, why aren’t you?
“In that day” there may be any number of things still hidden to your understanding, but they will not come between your heart and God. “In that day you will ask Me nothing”— you will not need to ask, because you will be certain that God will reveal things in accordance with His will. The faith and peace of John 14:1 has become the real attitude of your heart, and there are no more questions to be asked. If anything is a mystery to you and is coming between you and God, never look for the explanation in your mind, but look for it in your spirit, your true inner nature— that is where the problem is. Once your inner spiritual nature is willing to submit to the life of Jesus, your understanding will be perfectly clear, and you will come to the place where there is no distance between the Father and you, His child, because the Lord has made you one. “In that day you will ask Me nothing.”
The great word of Jesus to His disciples is Abandon. When God has brought us into the relationship of disciples, we have to venture on His word; trust entirely to Him and watch that when He brings us to the venture, we take it. Studies in the Sermon on the Mount
1 Corinthians 6:9-11
If you feel guilty about sins from your past, the Scriptures have a special assurance for you. Since the Corinthian believers were also struggling, Paul offered to them—and us—this counsel and hope: “Such [sinners] were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor. 6:11).
In the verses preceding these encouraging words, Paul lists some disgraceful lifestyles that continue to the modern day. Every week, pastors hear from people who ask whether the Lord can forgive them for a homosexual lifestyle, adultery, abusive behavior, or one of a host of other transgressions. The answer is yes. He can and will forgive the Christian’s every sin, in accordance with 1 John 1:9.
Until a believer understands how the Lord forgives and removes sin, he or she will carry the guilt. Promises to do better end in futility. Forgiveness is based only on the shed blood of Jesus Christ. He bore your sin on the cross and died in your place. When you acknowledge that He alone can make you righteous before God, then you are set free. You are given a new mindset—one guided by the Holy Spirit to focus upon the things of God instead of your sinful desires.
Do you wake up each morning to face another day of dragging your guilt around? You don’t have to. The Lord is waiting to take that load from you and cast it as far as the east is from the west (Ps. 103:12). All you must do is hand over your burden and receive His forgiveness.
“Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” (Luke 12:32)
The world tends to measure success by size, and this seems generally true in the Christian world as well. The most “successful” churches are considered to be those with the largest congregations, or the largest budgets, or the greatest number of converts baptized each year, or some other quantitative index. But this is not God’s criterion. At the judgment seat of Christ, “the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is” (1 Corinthians 3:13). Not how big it is, but of what sort it is! Quality, not quantity, is the criterion.
Christ’s encouraging words to the “little flock” were given toward the end of an extended warning against the desire to accumulate wealth. “Take heed, and beware of covetousness,” He had said (Luke 12:15), speaking to His small group of followers. He was their Shepherd and would provide the needs of His “little flock.”
Christ’s warnings against individual covetousness evidently apply also to group covetousness. A church, or any other Christian organization, needs continually to guard against the desire to be impressive in the eyes of the world. The cities of Christendom exhibit many ornate cathedrals and temples that are now mostly empty and spiritually dead.
The Lord Jesus promised an “open door” to the little church at Philadelphia, because it had “little strength” and had “kept [His] word” (Revelation 3:8), but threatened to “spue . . . out of [His] mouth” the tepid church at Laodicea, which was boasting that she was “rich, and increased with goods” (Revelation 3:16-17). Not every “little flock” has kept God’s Word, nor has every big flock become lukewarm, but Christ’s words serve as both warning and encouragement. The greater blessings of the coming kingdom have been promised to the faithful “little flock.” HMM
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. —James 1:17
Now for God to alter or change at all, to be different from Himself, one of three things has to take place:
1. God must go from better to worse, or
2. He must go from worse to better, or
3. He must change from one kind of being to another.
Now that’s so plain that anybody can follow it; there’s nothing profound about that. (Occasionally somebody will say I preach over their head. All I can say is, they must have their head awfully low!) Isn’t it reasonable to assume that if anything changes it has to change from better to worse, from worse to better or from one kind of thing to another?…
Therefore, if God is to change, then God either has to get better or worse or different. But God can’t go from better to worse, because God is a holy God. Because God is eternal holiness, He can never be any less holy than He is now. And of course, He never can be any more holy than He is now, because He is perfect just as He is. There will never be a change in God—no change is necessary!
There is a wonderful stability in this truth, Lord. Thank You for Your unchangeable perfection. Amen.
Verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity… Surely every man walketh in a vain shew. (Psalm 39:5-6)
Brethren, I am not ashamed of this world God created—I am only ashamed of man’s sin!
If you could take all of man’s sin out of this world, there would be nothing to be ashamed of and nothing to be afraid of.
Our apologies must be for humanity—and for our sins. I keep repeating that we have no business making excuses for God.
It is popular now to talk about Christ being a guest here. I dare to tell people that they should stop patronizing Jesus Christ!
He is not the guest here—He is the Host!
We have apologists who write books and give lectures—apologizing for the person of Christ, trying to “explain” to our generation that the Bible does not really mean “exactly” what it says. But God has revealed Himself in Jesus Christ and thus we know where we stand, believing that all things were made by Him and “without Him was not anything made that was made.”
It has been asserted that God cannot be known. Those who say this declare that they themselves know nothing but phenomena.
He who made the world was certainly an intelligent being, in fact the highest intelligence; for in myriads of ways his works display the presence of profound thought and knowledge.
Lord Bacon said, “I had rather believe all the fables of the Talmud and the Koran than that this universal frame is without a mind,” This being so, we do in that very fact know God in a measure; ay, and in such a measure that we are prepared to trust him. He that made all things is more truly an object of confidence than all things that he has made.