Saturday, April 30, 2016

Away, my unbelieving fear!
Fear shall in me no more have place;
My Saviour doth not yet appear,
He hides the brightness of his face;
But shall I therefore let him go,
And basely to the tempter yield?
No, in the strength of Jesus, no,
I never will give up my shield.

Although the vine its fruit deny,
Although the olive yield no oil,
The withering fig-trees droop and die,
The fields elude the tiller’s toil,
The empty stall no herd afford,
And perish all the bleating race,
Yet will I triumph in the Lord,-
The God of my salvation praise.
               Charles Wesley   

Keep not thou silence, O God: hold not thy peace, and be not still, O God.  Psalms 83:1
     In Scripture there are three reasons why the Lord keeps silence when his people are in danger, and sits still when there is most need to give help and assistance.  One is, the Lord doth it to try their faith, as we see clearly, Matthew 8:24, where it is said that our Lord Christ was asleep:  “There arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep.  And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us:  we perish.”  We read more fully in Mark 4 and Luke 8, he left them, when the ship was covered with waves, and they were rowing for their lives, their Lord was asleep the while, and he said to them, “Why are ye so fearful? how is it that you have no faith?  And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still.  And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.”  Truly, the Lord will not suffer his people to be over-whelmed, that is certain, but he will suffer them to come very near, that the waves cover them, and fear and horror shall cover their souls, and all to try their faith......2.  I find another reason in Isaiah 59, and that is, the Lord doth keep silence in the midst of the troubles of his people, to try men’s uprightness, and discover who will stick to God, and his cause, and his people, out of uprightness of heart.  For if God should always appear for his cause, God and his cause should have many favourites and friends; but sometimes God leaves his cause, and leaves his people, and leaves his gospel, and his ordinances to the wide world, to see who will plead for it and stick to it......3.  There is a third reason: God, as it were, keeps silence in the midst of the greatest troubles, that he may, as it were, gather the wicked into one fagot, into one bundle, that they may be destroyed together.  There is a great deal of ado to “gather the saints” in this world; and truly there is some ado to gather the wicked.  So God withdraws himself from his people, yet he hath a hook within their hearts, he holds them up secretly by his Spirit, that they shall not leave him; yet the world shall not see but that God hath quite left them, and all their ordinances and his gospel and every thing; and there the wicked come together and insult, whereby God may come upon them at once, and destroy them, as we find ten nations in the Psalm.  And so in Genesis, God stirs up the nations against Abraham and his posterity, and there are ten nations that God promised to cut off before Abraham at once, the Perizzites and the Jebuzites, and the Canaanites, etc....  
                                                                                                                          Gualter [Walter] Cradock

Friday, April 29, 2016

    Spirit of God, descend upon my heart;
    Wean it from earth, through all its pulses move;
    Stoop to my weakness, mighty as Thou art,
    And make me love Thee as I ought to love.

    I ask no dream, no prophet ecstasies,
    No sudden rending of the veil of clay,
    No angel visitant, no opening skies;
    But take the dimness of my soul away.

    Hast Thou not bid us love Thee, God and King?
    All, all Thine own, soul, heart, and strength, and mind;
    I see Thy cross-there teach my heart to cling:
    Oh, let me seek Thee, and oh, let me find.

    Teach me to feel that Thou art always nigh;
    Teach me the struggles of the soul to bear,
    To check the rising doubt, the rebel sigh;
    Teach me the patience of unanswered prayer.

    Teach me to love Thee as Thine angels love,-
    One holy passion filling all my frame;
    The kindling of the Heaven-descended Dove,
    My heart an altar, and Thy love the flame.
                                                                   G. Croly

And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.  Deut 6:5

     "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might."  Here lies the secret of all true practical religion.  Without this all is valueless to God.....
.....Assuredly, He loved us in deed and in truth; and He cannot be satisfied with anything else, whether in our ways with Him or our ways one with another.  All must flow straight from the heart.  "And these words which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart" — at the very source of all the issues of life.  This is peculiarly precious.  Whatever is in the heart comes out through the lips, and in the life.  How important then, to have the heart full of the word of God, so full that we shall have no room for the vanities and follies of this present evil world.  Thus shall our conversation be always with grace, seasoned with salt.....
     In every part of the divine volume, we see how much importance God attaches to the attitude and state of the heart, with respect to Him or to His word, which is one and the same thing.  When the heart is true to Him, all is sure to come right; but, on the other hand, we shall find that, where the heart grows cold and careless as to God and His truth, there will, sooner or later, be open departure from the path of truth and righteousness.....
     How needful, then, now, always!  This "purpose of heart" is most precious to God.....The outward life may be very correct, and the creed may be very orthodox; but if the earnest purpose of heart be lacking — the affectionate cleaving of the whole moral being to God and His Christ, all is utterly worthless.                    
                                                                                                                                 C. H. Mackintosh

Thursday, April 28, 2016

You’re the Way for those we know;
Blessed Savior, give them You.
May Your Spirit to them go;
Blessed Savior, give them You.

You’re the Truth for those we love;
Caring Savior, give them You.
Grant them now the Spirit Dove;
Caring Savior, give them You.

You’re the Life for those who hate;
Loving Savior, give them You.
May Your Spirit theirs awake;
Loving Savior, give them You.

You’re the Light for unknown souls;   
Risen Savior, give them You.
May Your Spirit make them whole;
Risen Savior, give them You.

May today they’ll seek Your face!
May today You’ll grant them grace!
Since salvation comes from You,
Blessed Savior, give them You!
                        M. Robbins

O that one might plead for a man with God, as a man pleadeth for his neighbour.  Job 16:21

     God, does Your heart ever groan when we go shopping for shoes - for “soles” - when we should be praying for the salvation of “souls?”
     God, do You ever grow weary of hearing us speaking about non-essential things when we should be speaking to others about Your love and grace?   
     And when we spend more time planning for festive holiday occasions than the time we spend in prayer for the salvation of those we know, do You weep then, God?
     Unfortunately, it seems more rewarding to talk to our friends about current decorating and fashion trends than it does to pray to You about the salvation of our acquaintances.
     Oh, God!  How shameful it is that we can excitedly think about an eternity in Heaven with You and spend so little time in prayer for our loved ones, friends, and even enemies who know not Your love and have not experienced Your saving grace!
     And yet, oh God, despite our constant failures, despite our not  praying for others, please look upon us today with love and tenderness. 
     Take into account that we are still sinners saved by Your grace and that the burden of praying for the unsaved too often weighs us down in sorrow.
     Also remember that we still battle with the “seen” and the “unseen” and that we really do have trouble comprehending the whole idea of what it means to be a “saved individual headed towards Heaven” in comparison with being an “unsaved soul headed towards Hell.”
     But sometimes through Your Spirit, oh God, our spiritual eyes do seem to see the “unseen.”  When that happens, our spirit goes to a higher level and with a greater comprehension, we see You as the Great I AM through whom everything exists because of Your words.  Also at that point, we understand more clearly that all men - kings, princes, billionaires, artists, politicians, etc., are as mere butterflies amidst a thousand galaxies when compared with You.
     Truly, we are less than nothing if our sins have not been washed in the blood of the Lamb.
     So as we pray for others, God, hear past our simple words.
     And hear the tears streaming from our soul as we cry aloud to You:

     “You’re the Prize for those we know.  Please give
     them You!  Please give them You!”
                                                                                                                                           M. Robbins

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

....."Who of GOD is made unto us wisdom, righteousness;" CHRIST's whole personal righteousness is made over to, and accounted theirs.  Being enabled to lay hold on CHRIST by faith, GOD the Father blots out their transgressions, as with a thick cloud; their sins, and their iniquities he remembers no more; they are made the righteousness of GOD in CHRIST JESUS, "who is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth."  In one sense, GOD now sees no sin in them; the whole covenant of works is fulfilled in them; they are actually justified, acquitted, and looked upon as righteous in the sight of GOD; they are perfectly accepted in the beloved; they are complete in him; the flaming sword of GOD's wrath, which before moved every way, is now removed, and free access given to the tree of life; they are enabled to reach out the arm of faith, and pluck, and live for evermore.  Hence it is that the apostle, under a sense of this blessed privilege, breaks out into this triumphant language; "It is CHRIST that justifies, who is he that condemns?"  Does sin condemn? CHRIST's righteousness delivers believers from the guilt of it: CHRIST is their Saviour, and is become a propitiation for their sins: who therefore shall lay any thing to the charge of GOD's elect?  Does the law condemn?  By having CHRIST's righteousness imputed to them, they are dead to the law, as a covenant of works; CHRIST has fulfilled it for them, and in their stead.  Does death threaten them? they need not fear: the sting of death is sin, the strength of sin is the law; but GOD has given them the victory, by imputing to them the righteousness of the LORD JESUS.
....."a Saviour is born."  And well may angels rejoice at the conversion of poor sinners: for the LORD is their righteousness; they have peace with GOD, through faith in CHRIST's blood, and shall never enter into condemnation.  O believers! (for this discourse is intended in a special manner for you) lift up your heads; "Rejoice in the LORD always; again I say, rejoice."  CHRIST is made to you of GOD righteousness, what then should you fear? you are made the righteousness of GOD in him; you may be called, "The LORD our righteousness."  Of what then should you be afraid? what shall separate you henceforward, from the love of CHRIST? "shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?  No, I am persuaded, neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate you from the love of GOD, which is in CHRIST JESUS our LORD," who of GOD is made unto you righteousness.....
                                                                                                                               George Whitefield

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

 .....You have heard that this work of purchasing salvation was wholly finished during the time of Christ's humiliation.  When Christ rose from the dead, and was exalted from that abasement to which he submitted for our salvation, the purchase of eternal life was completely made, so that there was no need of any thing more to be done in order to it.  But now the servants were sent forth with a message, Matt. 22:4.  "Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage."  Therefore, are your sins many and great?  Here is enough done by Christ to procure their pardon.  There is no need of any righteousness of yours to obtain your pardon and justification; no, you may come freely, without money and without price.  Since therefore there is such a free and gracious invitation given you, come, come naked as you are; come as a poor condemned criminal; come and cast yourself down at Christ's feet, as one justly condemned, and utterly helpless.  Here is a complete salvation wrought out by Christ, and through him offered to you.  Come, therefore, accept of it, and be saved.
     For Christ to reject one that thus comes to him, would be to frustrate all those great things which God brought to pass from the fall of man to the incarnation of Christ.  It would also frustrate all that Christ did and suffered while on earth; yea, it would frustrate the incarnation itself.  All the great things done were for that end, that those might be saved who should come to Christ.  Therefore you may be sure Christ will not be backward in saving those who come to him, and trust in him: for he has no desire to frustrate himself in his own work.  Neither will God the Father refuse you; for he has no desire to frustrate himself in all that he did for so many hundreds and thousands of years, to prepare the way for the salvation of sinners by Christ. Come, therefore, hearken to the sweet and earnest calls of Christ to your soul.  Do as he invites and as he commands you, Matt. 11:28-30.  "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light!"
                                                                                                                                    Jonathan Edwards

Monday, April 25, 2016

Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you  
Matt 5:43-44

     Ours it is to persist in loving, even if men persist in enmity.  We are to render blessing for cursing, prayers for persecutions.  Even in the cases of cruel enemies, we are to "do good to them, and pray for them."  We are no longer enemies to any, but friends to all.  We do not merely cease to hate, and then abide in a cold neutrality; but we love where hatred seemed inevitable.  We bless where our old nature bids us curse, and we are active in doing good to those who deserve to receive evil from us.  Where this is practically carried out, men wonder, respect, and admire the followers of Jesus.  The theory may be ridiculed, but the practice is reverenced, and is counted so surprising, that men attribute it to some Godlike quality in Christians, and own that they are the children of the Father who is in heaven.  Indeed, he is a child of God, who can bless the unthankful and the evil; for in daily providence the Lord is doing this on a great scale, and none but his children will imitate him.  To do good for the sake of the good done, and not because of the character of the person benefitted, is a noble imitation of God.  If the Lord only sent the fertilizing shower upon the land of the saintly, drought would deprive whole leagues of land of all hope of a harvest.  We also must do good to the evil, or we shall have a narrow sphere, our hearts will grow contracted, and our sonship towards the good God will be rendered doubtful.
                                                                                                                                           C. H. Spurgeon

Sunday, April 24, 2016

When a man's ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.  Prov 16:7

I must see that my ways please the Lord.  Even then I shall have enemies; and, perhaps, all the more certainly because I endeavour to do that which is right.  But what a promise this is!  The Lord will make the wrath of man to praise him, and abate it so that it shall not distress me.  He can constrain an enemy to desist from harming me, even though he has a mind to do so.  This he did with Laban, who pursued Jacob, but did not dare to touch him.  Or he can subdue the wrath of the enemy, and make him friendly, as he did with Esau, who met Jacob in a brotherly manner, though Jacob had dreaded that he would smite him and his family with the sword.  The Lord can also convert a furious adversary into a brother in Christ, and a fellow-worker, as he did with Saul of Tarsus.  Oh, that he would do this in every case where a persecuting spirit appears!  Happy is the man whose enemies are made to be to him what the lions were to Daniel in the den, quiet and companionable!  When I meet death, who is called the last enemy, I pray that I may be at peace.  Only let my great care be to please the Lord in all things.  Oh, for faith and holiness; for these are a pleasure unto the Most High!
                                                                                                                                       C. H. Spurgeon

Saturday, April 23, 2016

A rich man went to Christ one night;
He thought he surely had the right,
But Jesus knew the man’s own plight;
He was condemned through unbelief!

Wherever Christ did speak His Word,
Vast multitudes of hearts were stirred;
But Jesus knew that though they heard
They were condemned through unbelief!

Today, Christ sees your precious soul;
He sees your sins; He knows their toll;
And yet He knows you can be whole;
Salvation comes when you believe!

From condemnation step away;
Oh! heed the voice of Christ today;
On Him believe and yes, be saved,
For He’s the Truth, the Life, the Way!
                       M. Robbins

For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.  He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.  John 3:17-18

     Imagine for a moment when you left for work this morning, your house had a solid foundation, firm outside walls, a carefully tiled roof and flowers were blooming abundantly in your yard.
     Then in this hypothetical situation imagine coming home after work and finding nothing different except “CONDEMNED” signs posted all about your house and yard.
     Wouldn’t you naturally be confused, angry, and stunned?
     Wouldn’t you even question the fairness of such a verdict?
     And wouldn’t you do your best to reverse such a ruling?
     Now in John 3:17-18, Christ addresses the matter of condemnation, but the issue isn’t about houses or lands being condemned.  He speaks about a different kind of condemnation - the condemnation of the soul.
     And because “all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags,” the condemnation that Christ speaks of will forever be a justifiable verdict.
     Yet!  Yet, there is good news! 
     The verdict of “condemnation” upon an individual’s soul can be reversed because Christ came into the world not to condemn the world “but that the world through him might be saved.”
     Yes, God didn’t send us into the world to bring about our own salvation.....God sent Christ.
     As John 5:24 simply states: Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.                                                               
     Salvation?  Condemnation?  Death?  Life?  Eternity is at stake - “ is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”  Another time may never come.
     May it be Christ in whom you’ll choose to believe! 
                                                                                                                                             M. Robbins

Friday, April 22, 2016

Now from the altar of our hearts,
Let warmest thanks arise;
Assist us, Lord, to offer up
Our evening sacrifice.

This day our God was our sun and shield,
Our keeper and our guide;
His care was on our weakness shown,
His mercies multiplied.

Minutes and mercies multiplied,
Have made up all this day;
Minutes came quick, but mercies were
More swift and free than they.

New time, new favors, and new joys,
Do a new song require;
Till we shall praise thee as we would,
Accept our hearts’ desire.
                       John Mason

Now the light has gone away;
Saviour, listen while I pray,
Asking Thee to watch and keep,
And to send me quiet sleep.

Jesus, Saviour, wash away
All that has been wrong today;
Help me ev’ry day to be
Good and gentle, more like Thee.

Let my near and dear ones be
Always near and dear to Thee;
O bring me and all I love
To Thy happy home above.

Now my evening praise I give;
Thou didst die that I might live:
All my blessings come from Thee;
O how good Thou art to me!

Thou, my best and kindest  Friend,
Thou wilt love me to the end;
Let me love Thee more and more,
Always better than before.
        Frances Ridley Havergal

As for me, I will call upon God; and the LORD shall save me.  Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I
pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice.  Psalms 55:16-17

.....I have heard an anecdote of two gentlemen travelling together, somewhere in Switzerland.  Presently they came into the midst of the forests; and you know the gloomy tales the people tell about the inns there, how dangerous it is to lodge in them. 
     One of them, an Infidel, said to the other, who was a Christian, "I don't like stopping here at all; it is very
dangerous indeed."  
     "Well," said the other, "let us try." 
     So they went into a house; but it looked so suspicious that neither of them liked it; and they thought they would prefer being at home in England. 
     Presently the landlord said, "Gentlemen, I always read and pray with my family before going to bed; will you allow me to do so to-night?" 
     "Yes," they said, "with the greatest pleasure."  
     When they went up stairs, the Infidel said, "I am not at all afraid now."
     "Why?" said the Christian.
     "Because our host has prayed." 
     "Oh!" said the other, "then it seems, after all, you think something of religion; because a man prays, you can go to sleep in his house." 
     And it was marvellous how both of them did sleep.  Sweet dreams they had, for they felt that where the house had been roofed by prayer, and walled with devotion, there could not be found a man living that would commit an injury to them. 
                                                                                                                                    C. H. Spurgeon

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Praise, everlasting praise be paid
To Him who earth's foundations laid:
Praise to the God whose strong decrees
Sway the creation as he please.

Praise to the goodness of the Lord,
Who rules his people by his word;
And there, as strong as his decrees,
He sets his kindest promises.

Firm are the words his prophets give;
Sweet words, on which his children live;
Each of them is the voice of God,
Who spoke, and spread the skies abroad.

Each of them powerful as that sound
That bid the new-made world go round:
And stronger than the solid poles,
On which the wheel of nature rolls.

Whence then should doubts and fears arise?
Why trickling sorrows drown our eyes?
Slowly, alas! our mind receives
The comforts that our Maker gives.

O, for a strong, a lasting faith,
To credit what th' Almighty saith!
T’ embrace the message of his Son,
And call the joys of heaven our own.

Then, should the earth's old pillars shake;
And all the wheels of nature break;
Our steady souls would fear no more
Than solid rocks, when billows roar.

Our everlasting hopes arise
Above the ruinable skies,
Where the eternal Builder reigns,
And his own courts his power sustains.
                    Isaac Watts

“Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth.”  Psalms 124:8

As if the Psalmist had said, As long as I see heaven and earth I will never distrust.  I hope in that God which made all these things out of nothing; and therefore as long as I see those two great standing monuments of his power before me, heaven and earth, I will never be discouraged.  So the apostle: 1 Peter 4:19, “Commit the keeping of your souls to him in well-doing, as unto a faithful Creator.”  O Christian! remember when you trust God you trust an almighty Creator, who is able to help, let your case be never so desperate.  God could create when he had nothing to work upon, which made one wonder; and he could create when he had nothing to work with, which is another wonder.  What is become of the tools wherewith he made the world?  Where is the trowel wherewith he arched the heaven? and the spade wherewith he digged the sea?  What had God to work upon, or work withal when he made the world?  He made it out of nothing.  Now you  commit your souls to the same faithful Creator.                                                            
                                                                                                                                  Thomas Manton

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

How pleasant, how divinely fair,
O, Lord of Hosts, thy dwellings are!
With long desire my spirit faints
To meet the assemblies of thy saints.

My flesh would rest in thy abode;
My panting heart cries out for God;
My God! my King! why should I be
So far from all my joys and thee?

The sparrow chooses where to rest,
And for her young provides her nest:
But will my God to sparrows grant
That pleasure, which his children want?

Blest are the saints, who sit on high,
Around thy throne of majesty;
Thy brightest glories shine above,
And all their work is praise and love.

Blest are the souls, who find a place
Within the temple of thy grace;
There they behold thy gentler rays,
And seek thy face, and learn thy praise.

Blest are the men, whose hearts are set
To find the way to Zion's gate:
God is their strength, and through the road
They lean upon their helper, God.

Cheerful they walk, with growing strength,
Till all shall meet in heaven at length;
Till all before thy face appear,
And join in nobler worship there.
                       Isaac Watts

Yea, the sparrow hath found an house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O LORD of hosts, my King, and my God.  Psalms 84:3

The tender care of God, over the least of his creatures, is here most touchingly alluded to.  The Psalmist, while in exile, envies them their privileges.  He longs to be nestling, as it were, in the dwelling-place of God. The believer finds a perfect home and rest in God’s altars; or, rather, in the great truths which they represent. Still, his confidence in God is sweetened and strengthened by the knowledge of his minute, universal, providential care.  It becomes his admiring delight.  “God fails not,” as one has beautifully said, “to find a house for the most worthless, and a nest for the most restless of birds.”  What confidence this should give us!  How we should rest!  What repose the soul finds that casts itself on the watchful, tender care of him who provides so fully for the need of all his creatures!  We know what the expression of “nest” conveys, just as well as that of “a house.”  Is it not a place of security, a shelter from storm, a covert to hide oneself in, from every evil, a protection from all that can harm, “a place to rest in, to nestle in, to joy in”?  But there is one thing in these highly privileged birds which strikes us forcibly in our meditations--they knew not him from whom all this kindness flowed--they knew neither his heart nor his hand.  They enjoyed the rich provisions of his tender care; he thought of everything for their need, but there was no fellowship between them and the Great Giver.  From this, O my soul, thou mayest learn a useful lesson.  Never rest satisfied with merely frequenting such places, or with having certain privileges there; but rise, in spirit, and seek and find and enjoy direct communion with the living God, through Jesus Christ our Lord.  The heart of David turns to God himself.  “My heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God.”
                                                                                                                                  Things New and Old

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.  John 15:5

.....He has mercifully convinced me that I labour under a complication of disorders, summed up in the word sin; he has graciously revealed himself to me as the infallible Physician, and has enabled me to commit myself to him, as such, and to expect my cure from his hand alone.  Yet how often, instead of thank-fully accepting his prescriptions, have I foolishly and presumptuously ventured to prescribe to him, and to point out how I would have him deal with me?  How often have I thought something was necessary, which he saw best to deny, and that I could have done better without those dispensations which his wisdom appointed to work for my good?  He is God, and not man, or else he would have been weary of me, and left me to my own management long ago.  How inconsistent! to acknowledge that I am blind, to entreat him to lead me, and yet to want to choose my own way, in the same breath.  I have limited the Holy One of Israel, and not considered, that he magnifies his wisdom and grace in working by contraries, and bringing good out of seeming evil.  It has cost me something to bring myself to confess that he is wiser than I; but I trust, through his blessing, I have not suffered wholly in vain.  My sensible comforts have not been great; the proofs I have had of the evils of my sinful nature, my incapacity and aversion to good, have neither been few nor small; but by these unpromising means, I hope, he has made his grace and salvation precious to my soul, and in some measure, weaned me from leaning to my own understanding.
     Again, self-righteousness has had a considerable hand in dictating many of my desires for an increase of comfort and spiritual strength.  I have wanted some stock of my own.  I have been wearied of being so perpetually beholden to him, and necessitated to come to him always in the same strain, as a poor, miserable sinner.  I could have liked to have done something for myself in common, and to have depended upon him chiefly upon extraordinary occasions.  I have found, indeed, that I could do nothing without his assistance, nor any thing, even with it, but what I have reason to be ashamed of.  If this had only humbled me, and led me to rejoice in his all-sufficiency, it would have been well.  But it has often had a different effect, to make me sullen, angry, and discontented; as if it was not best and most desirable, that he should have all the glory of his own work, and I should have nothing to boast of, but that in the Lord I have righteousness and strength.  I am now learning to glory only in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me; to be content to be nothing, that he may be all in all.  But I find this a hard lesson; and when I seem to have made some proficiency, a slight turn in my spirit throws me back, and I have to begin all again.....
                                                                                                   From a Letter by John Newton
                                                                                                               on a Believer’s Frames

Monday, April 18, 2016

Strange and mysterious is my life,
What opposites I feel within!
A stable peace, a constant strife;
The rule of grace, the power of sin:
Too often I am captive led,
Yet daily triumph in my Head.

I prize the privilege of prayer,
But oh! what backwardness to pray!
Though on the Lord I cast my care,
I feel its burden every day;
I seek His will in all I do,
Yet find my own is working too.

I call the promises my own,
And prize them more than mines of gold;
Yet though their sweetness I have known,
They leave me unimpressed and cold:
One hour upon the truth I feed,
The next, I know not what I read.

I love the holy day of rest,
When Jesus meets His gathered saints;
Sweet day, of all the week the best!
For its return my spirit pants:
Yet often through my unbelief,
It proves a day of guilt and grief.

While on my Savior I rely,
I know my foes shall loose their aim;
And therefore dare their power defy,
Assured of conquest through His name:
But soon my confidence is slain,
And all my fears return again.

Thus different powers within me strive,
And grace and sin by turns prevail;
I grieve, rejoice, decline, revive,
And victory hangs in doubtful scale:
But Jesus has His promise past,
That grace shall overcome at last.
                                                John Newton

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Weary pilgrim on life’s pathway,
Struggling on beneath thy load;
Hear these words of consolation,
“Cast thy burden on the Lord.”

Are thy tired feet unsteady?
Does thy lamp no light afford?
Is thy cross too great and heavy?
Cast thy burden on the Lord.

Are the ties of friendship sever’d?
Hush’d the voices fondly heard?
Breaks thy heart with weight of anguish?
Cast thy burden on the Lord.

Does thy heart with faintness falter?
Does thy mind forget his word?
Does thy strength succumb to weakness?
Cast thy burden on the Lord.

He will hold thee up from falling,
He will guide thy steps aright;
He will strengthen each endeavor;
He will keep thee by his might.


Cast thy burden on the Lord,
Cast thy burden on the Lord,
And he will strengthen thee, sustain and comfort thee;
Cast thy burden on the Lord.
            Wm. J. Kirkpatrick

.....for he careth for you. 1 Peter 5:7

It is a happy way of soothing sorrow when we can feel — "HE careth for me."  Christian! do not dishonor your religion by always wearing a brow of care; come, cast your burden upon your Lord.  You are staggering beneath a weight which your Father would not feel.  What seems to you a crushing burden, would be to Him but as the small dust of the balance.  Nothing is so sweet as to

    "Lie passive in God's hands,  And know no will
    but His."

O child of suffering, be thou patient; God has not passed thee over in His providence.  He who is the feeder of sparrows, will also furnish you with what you need.  Sit not down in despair; hope on, hope ever.  Take up the arms of faith against a sea of trouble, and your opposition shall yet end your distresses.  There is One who careth for you.  His eye is fixed on you, His heart beats with pity for your woe, and His hand omnipotent shall yet bring you the needed help.  The darkest cloud shall scatter itself in showers of mercy.  The blackest gloom shall give place to the morning.  He, if thou art one of His family, will bind up thy wounds, and heal thy broken heart.  Doubt not His grace because of thy tribulation, but believe that He loveth thee as much in seasons of trouble as in times of happiness.  What a serene and quiet life might you lead if you would leave providing to the God of Providence!  With a little oil in the cruse, and a handful of meal in the barrel, Elijah outlived the famine, and you will do the same.  If God cares for you, why need you care too?  Can you trust Him for your soul, and not for your body?  He has never refused to bear your burdens, He has never fainted under their weight.  Come, then, soul! have done with fretful care, and leave all thy concerns in the hand of a gracious God.                                                          
                                                                                                                C. H. Spurgeon 

Saturday, April 16, 2016

God of my life, to Thee I call,
Afflicted at Thy feet I fall;
When the great water-floods prevail,
Leave not my trembling heart to fail!

Friend of the friendless and the faint!
Where should I lodge my deep complaint?
Where but with Thee, whose open door
Invites the helpless and the poor?

Did ever mourner plead with Thee,
And Thou refuse that mourner's plea?
Does not the word still fixed remain
That none shall seek Thy face in vain?

That were a grief I could not bear,
Didst Thou not hear and answer prayer;
But a prayer-hearing, answering God,
Supports me under every load.

Fair is the lot that's cast for me,
I have an Advocate with Thee:
They whom the world caresses most,
Have no such privilege to boast.
Poor though I am, despised, forgot,
Yet God, my God, forgets me not;   
And he is safe, and must succeed,
For whom the Lord vouchsafes to plead.
                       William Cowper

Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O LORD.  Psalms 130:1

.....surely God’s children are often cast into very desperate cases, and plunged into deep miseries, to the end that they may send out of a contrite and feeling heart such prayers as may mount aloft and pierce the heavens.  When we are in prosperity our prayers come from our lips; and therefore the Lord is forced to cast us down, that our prayers may come from our hearts, and that our senses may be wakened from the security in which they are lying.  Albeit the throne of God be most high, yet he delighteth to hear the petition of hearts that are most low, that are most cast down by the sight of sin.  There is no affliction, neither any place so low (yea, if as low as the belly of the whale wherein Jonah lay) which can separate us from the love of the Lord, or stay our prayers from coming before him.  Those that are farthest cast down, are not farthest from God, but are nearest unto him.  God is near to a contrite heart, and it is the proper seat where his Spirit dwelleth:  Isaiah 46:2.  And thus God dealeth with us, as men do with such houses that they are minded to build sumptuously and on high; for then they dig deep grounds for the foundation.  Thus God purposing to make a fair show of Daniel, and the three children in Babel; of Joseph in Egypt; of David in Israel; he first threw them into the deep waters of afflictions.  Daniel is cast into the den of lions; the three children are thrown into the fiery furnace; Joseph is imprisoned; David exiled.  Yet all those he exalted and made glorious temples to himself.  Mark hereby the dulness of our nature, that is such, that God is forced to use sharp remedies to awaken us.  Jonah lay sleeping in the ship, when the tempest of God’s wrath was pursuing him:  God therefore threw him into the belly of the whale, and the bottom of the deep, that from those deep places he might cry to him.  When, therefore, we are troubled by heavy sickness, or poverty, or oppressed by the tyranny of men, let us make profit and use thereof, considering that God hath cast his best children into such dangers for their profit;and that it is better to be in deep dangers praying, than on high mountains of vanity playing.   
                                                                                                                                  Archibald Symson

Friday, April 15, 2016

Behold, O God our shield, and look upon the face of thine anointed.  Psalms 84:9

For I shall never come to look upon thy face, if thou vouchsafe not first to look upon mine: if thou afford me not as well the benefit of thine eyes, to look upon me, as the favour of thine ears to hear me, I shall be left only to a bare expectation, but never come to the happiness of fruition; but when thou vouchsafest to look upon my face, that look of thine hath an influence of all true blessedness, and makes me find what a happiness it is to have the God of Jacob for my shield.
                                                                                                                                       Sir Richard Baker

Thursday, April 14, 2016

The tongue is the principal instrument in the cause of God; and it is the chief engine of the devil; give him this, and he asks no more-there is no mischief or misery he will not accomplish by it.  The use, the influence of it, therefore, is inexpressible; and words are never to be considered only as effects, but as causes, the operation of which can never be fully imagined.  Let us suppose a case, I fear, but too common.  You drop, in the thoughtlessness of conversation, or for the sake of argument or wit, some irreligious, sceptical expression-it lodges in the memory of a child, or a servant-it takes root in a soil favourable to such seed-it gradually springs up, and brings forth fruit, in the profanation of the Sabbath; the neglect of the means of grace; in the reading of improper books; in the choice of dangerous companions;-who can tell where it will end?  But there is a Being who knows where it began.  It will be acknowledged that some have it in their power, by reason of their office, talents, and influence, to do much more injury than others; but none are so insignificant as to be harmless. 
                                                                                                                                                    W. Jay 

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.  Psalms 27:3

“Though an host should encamp against me,” etc.  If I love my God, and I love him with a noble-spirited love, all my enemies will fight against me in vain; I shall never fear them, and the whole world cannot harm me.  Charity cannot be offended, because she takes offence at nothing.  Enemies, enviers, slanderers, persecutors, I defy you; if I love, I shall triumph over your attacks.  Ye can take away my goods; but if my love has a generous spirit, I shall be always rich enough, and ye cannot take away my love, which alone makes all my riches and treasures.  Ye may blacken my reputation; but as I hold you cheaply quit of all homage of praise and applause, I, with all my heart, give you a free leave to blame and to defame.  Happily for me, ye cannot blacken me before my God, and his esteem alone makes amends to me, and rewards me, for all your contempt.  Ye can persecute my body, but there I even will help you on by my penances; the sooner it shall perish, the sooner shall I be delivered from this domestic enemy, which is a burden to me.  What harm, then, can ye do me?  If I am resolved to suffer all and if I think I deserve all the outrages ye can do me, ye will only give more loftiness of spirit to my love, more brilliancy to my crown.         
                                                                                                                        Jean Baptiste Elias Avrillon  

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

I think it exceedingly wrong when I hear exhortations made to young people, "Quit your service as domestics, and come out into spiritual work.  Business men, leave your shops.  Workmen, give up your trades.  You cannot serve Christ in that calling, come away from it altogether."  I beg to say that nothing will be more pestilent than such advice as that.  There are men called by the grace of God to separate themselves from every earthly occupation, and they have special gifts for the work of the ministry; but ever to imagine that the bulk of Christian people cannot serve God in their daily calling, is to think altogether contrary to the mind of the Spirit of God.  If you are a servant, remain a servant.  If you are a waiter, go on with your waiting.  If you are a tradesman, go on with your trade.  Let every man abide in the calling wherein he is called, unless there be to him some special call from God to devote himself to the ministry.  Go on with your employment, dear Christian people, and do not imagine that you are to turn hermits, or monks, or nuns.  You would not glorify God if you did so act.  Soldiers of Christ are to fight the battle out where they are.  To quit the field, and shut yourselves up alone, would be to render it impossible that you should get the victory.  The work of God is as holy and acceptable in domestic service, or in trade, as any service that can be rendered in the pulpit, or even by the foreign missionary.  We thank God for the men specially called and set apart for his own work; but we know that they would do nothing unless the salt of our holy faith should permeate the daily life of other Christians.  You godly mothers, you are the glory of the Church of Christ.  You hard-working men and women, who endure patiently "as seeing him who is invisible," are the crown and glory of the Church of God.  You who do not shirk your daily labour, but stand manfully to it, obeying Christ in it, are proving what the Christian religion was meant to do.  We can, if we are truly priests unto God, make our everyday garments into vestments, our meals into sacraments, and our houses into temples for God's worship.  Our very beds will be within the veil, and our inmost thoughts will be as a sweet incense perpetually smoking up to the Most High.  Dream not that there is anything about any honest calling that
degrades a man, or hinders him in glorifying God; but sanctify it all, till the bells upon the horses shall ring out, "Holiness to the Lord," and the pots in your houses shall be as holy as the vessels of the sanctuary.
                                                                                                                                    C. H. Spurgeon

Monday, April 11, 2016

from a letter by Samuel Rutherford, Aberdeen, March 6, 1637

.....Let not the world be your portion; what have ye to do with dead clay?  Ye are..... but a lawfully begotten child; therefore set your heart on the inheritance.  Go up beforehand, and see your lodging.  Look through all your Father's rooms in heaven:  in your Father's house are many dwelling-places.  Men take a sight of lands ere they buy them.  I know that Christ hath made the bargain already; but be kind to the house ye are going to, and see it often.  Set your heart on things that are above, where Christ is at the right hand of God. 
                                                                                                                                     Samuel Rutherford  

Sunday, April 10, 2016

In our western country in the autumn, when there has not been for months any rain, sometimes the prairie catches fire, and the flames just roll along twenty feet high over that western desert, at the rate of thirty or forty miles an hour, consuming man and beast.  When the frontiersmen see it coming, what do they do?  They know they cannot run as fast as the fire can run.  Not the fleetest horse can escape from that fire.  They take a match and light the grass around them and let the flames sweep, and then they get into the burnt district and stand safe.  They hear the flames roar, they see death coming towards them; but they do not fear, they do not tremble, because the fire has passed over the place where they are, and there is no danger.  There is one mountain peak that the wrath of God has swept over; that is Mount Calvary, and that fire spent its fury upon the bosom of the Son of God.  Take your stand by the cross, and you will be safe for time and eternity.
                                                                                                                            Dwight L. Moody

Saturday, April 9, 2016

     I remember, while in Mobile attending meetings, a little incident occurred which I will relate.  It was a beautiful evening, and just before the meeting some neighbors and myself were sitting on the front piazza enjoying the evening.  One of the neighbors put one of his children upon a ledge eight feet high, and put out his hands and told him to jump.  Without the slightest hesitation he sprang into his father's arms.  Another child was lifted up, and he, too, readily sprang into the arms of his father.  He picked up another boy, larger than the others, and held out his arms, but he wouldn't jump.  He cried and screamed to be taken down.  The man begged the boy to jump, but it was of no use; he couldn't be induced to jump.
     The incident made me curious, and I stepped up to him and asked, "How was it that those two little fellows jumped so readily into your arms and the other boy wouldn't?"
     "Why," said the man, "those two boys are my children and the other boy isn't, he don't know me."                                 
                                                                                                                              Dwight L. Moody

Friday, April 8, 2016

Lord help us to sit very loose by all these things here below.  May we live here like strangers and make the world not a house but an inn, in which we sup and lodge, expecting to be on our journey tomorrow.  
                                                                                                                                    C. H. Spurgeon

Thursday, April 7, 2016

You say you have the Bible in your houses; do I think you are such heathens as not to have a Bible?  But when did you read it last?  How do you know that your spectacles, which you have lost, have not been there for the last three years?
                                                                                                                               C. H. Spurgeon

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

       Would you choose for a friend a person of great dignity?  It is a thing taking with men to have those for their friends who are much above them; because they look upon themselves honoured by the friendship of such.  Thus, how taking would it be with an inferior maid to be the object of the dear love of some great and excellent prince.  But Christ is infinitely above you, and above all the princes of the earth; for he is the King of kings.—So honourable a person as this offers himself to you, in the nearest and dearest friendship.
     And would you choose to have a friend not only great but good?  In Christ infinite greatness and infinite goodness meet together, and receive lustre and glory one from another.  His greatness is rendered lovely by his goodness.  The greater any one is without goodness, so much the greater evil; but when infinite goodness is joined with greatness, it renders it a glorious and adorable greatness.  So, on the other hand, his infinite goodness receives lustre from his greatness.  He that is of great understanding and ability, and is withal of a good and excellent disposition, is deservedly more esteemed than a lower and lesser being, with the same kind inclination and good will.  Indeed goodness is excellent in whatever subject it be found; it is beauty and excellency itself, and renders all excellent that are possessed of it; and yet more excellent when joined with greatness.  The very same excellent qualities of gold render the body in which they are inherent more precious, and of greater value, when joined with greater than when with lesser dimensions.  And how glorious is the sight, to see him who is the great Creator and supreme Lord of heaven and earth, full of condescension, tender pity, and mercy, towards the mean and unworthy!  His almighty power, and infinite majesty, and self-sufficiency, render his exceeding love and grace the more surprising.  And how do his condescension and compassion endear his majesty, power, and dominion, and render those attributes pleasant, that would otherwise be only terrible!  Would you not desire that your friend, though great and honourable, should be of such condescension and grace, and so to have the way opened to free access to him, that his exaltation above you might not hinder your free enjoyment of his friendship?  And would you choose not only that the infinite greatness and majesty of your friend should be, as it were, mollified and sweetened with condescension and grace; but would you also desire to have your friend brought nearer to you?  Would you choose a friend far above you, and yet as it were upon a level with you too?  Though it be taking with men to have a near and dear friend of superior dignity, yet there is also an inclination in them to have their friend a sharer with them in circumstances.  Thus is Christ.  Though he be the great God, yet he has, as it were, brought himself down to be upon a level with you, so as to become man as you are, that he might not only be your Lord, but your brother, and that he might be the more fit to be a companion for such a worm of the dust.  This is one end of Christ's taking upon him man's nature, that his people might be under advantages for a more familiar converse with him, than the infinite distance of the divine nature would allow of.  And upon this account the church longed for Christ's incarnation.....One design of God in the gospel, is to bring us to make God the object of our undivided respect, that he may engross our regard every way, that whatever natural inclination there is in our souls, he may be the centre of it; that God may be all in all.  But there is an inclination in the creature, not only to the adoration of a Lord and Sovereign, but to complacence in some one as a friend, to love and delight in some one that may be conversed with as a companion.  And virtue and holiness do not destroy or weaken this inclination of our nature.  But so hath God contrived in the affair of our redemption, that a divine person may be the object even of this inclination of our nature.  And in order hereto, such an one is come down to us, and has taken our nature, and is become one of us, and calls himself our friend, brother, and companion.  Psalms cxxii. 8. "For my brethren and companions' sake, will I now say, Peace be within thee."
     By your choosing Christ for your friend and portion, you will obtain these two infinite benefits.
     1.  Christ will give himself to you, with all those various excellencies that meet in him, to your full and everlasting enjoyment.  He will ever after treat you as his dear friend; and you shall ere long be where he is, and shall behold His glory, and dwell with him, in most free and intimate communion and enjoyment.
     When his saints get to heaven, they shall not merely see Christ, and have to do with him as subjects and servants with a glorious and gracious Lord and Sovereign, but Christ will entertain them as friends and brethren.  This we may learn from the manner of Christ's conversing with his disciples here on earth:  Though he was their sovereign Lord, and did not refuse, but required, their supreme respect and adoration, yet he did not treat them as earthly sovereigns are wont to do their subjects.  He did not keep them at an awful distance; but all along conversed with them with the most friendly familiarity, as a father amongst a company of children, yea, as with brethren.....And doubtless he will not treat his disciples with less freedom and endearment in heaven.  He will not keep them at a greater distance for his being in a state of exaltation; but he will rather take them into a state of exaltation with him.....
     When Christ was going to heaven, he comforted his disciples with the thought, that after a while he would come again and take them to himself, that they might be with him.  And we are not to suppose, that when the disciples got to heaven, they found him keeping a greater distance than he used to do.  No, doubtless, he embraced them as friends, and welcomed them to his and their Father's house, and to his and their glory.  They who had been his friends in this world, who had been together with him here, and had together partaken of sorrows and troubles, are now welcomed by him to rest, and to partake of glory with him.....
.....if we choose Christ for our friend and portion, we shall hereafter be so received to him, that there shall be nothing to hinder the fullest enjoyment of him, to the satisfying the utmost cravings of our souls.....There shall never be any end of this happiness, or anything to interrupt our enjoyment of it, or in the least to molest us in it!
     2.  By your being united to Christ, you will have a more glorious union with, and enjoyment of God the Father, than otherwise could be.  For hereby the saints' relation to God becomes much nearer; they are the children of God in a higher manner than otherwise could be.  For, being members of God's own Son, they are in a sort partakers of his relation to the Father: they are not only sons of God by regeneration, but by a kind of communion in the sonship of the eternal Son.  This seems to be intended, Gal. iv. 4, 5, 6.  "God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that are under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.  And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father."  The church is the daughter of God, not only as he hath begotten her by his word and Spirit, but as she is the spouse of his eternal Son.....
                                                                                                                             Jonathan Edwards

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Consider what you are, what light you have had, and what means you have lived under: and yet how you have behaved yourself!  What have those many days and nights you have lived been filled up with?  How have those years that have rolled over your heads, one after another, been spent?
                                                                                                                                      Jonathan Edwards

Monday, April 4, 2016

Many of you, by the bad examples you have set, by corrupting the minds of others, by your sinful conversation, by leading them into, or strengthening them into sin, and by the mischief you have done in human society other ways that might be mentioned, have been guilty of those things that have tended to others' damnation.  You have heretofore appeared on the side of sin and Satan, and have strengthened their interest, and have been many ways accessary to others' sins, have hardened their hearts, and thereby have done what has tended to the ruin of their souls.  Without doubt there are those here present who have been in a great measure the means of others' damnation.  One man may really be a means of others' damnation as well as salvation.
                                                                                                                                   Jonathan Edwards

Sunday, April 3, 2016

We have a blessed subject to-day—"Praise."  I think this is the first praise meeting we have had.  We have been praying a great deal, and now let us praise God.  There is much more said in the Bible about praise than about prayer.  The Psalms are nothing but praise, and as David got nearer the end of his journey he seems to have thought of little else.  So it is with Christians - the nearer they get to heaven the more they praise God.  The saints praise him in heaven, and men should learn how to praise him here below.  Everything that God has created except the heart of man, praises him.  The sun, moon, and stars praise him, and oh, let us praise him!  "Praise the Lord, O my soul," says the Psalmist.
                                                                                                                                             D. L. Moody

Saturday, April 2, 2016

.....No life is so hedged about with difficulties as that of faith.  This was the life lived by Noah and his sons, whom we see absolutely depending upon the heavens for support.  The earth was covered with water.  There was no bottom on which to stand.  It was the word of promise that upheld them, as they drifted in this welter of waters.
     The difficulty besetting Noah is hinted at in the words, "God remembered."  Moses thus intimates that Noah had been tossed on the water so long that God seemed to have forgotten him entirely.  They who pass through such mental strain, when the rays of divine grace are gone and they sit in darkness or are forgotten by God, find by experience that it is far more difficult to live in the Word or by faith alone than to be a hermit or a monk.  Hence it is not a meaningless expression when the Holy Spirit says that "God remembered Noah."  He means that from the day that Noah entered the ark, no word was spoken, nothing was revealed to him; that he saw no ray of divine grace shining, but merely clung to the promise which he had accepted, while the waters and waves raged as if God had certainly forgotten him.
     The word "remembered" indicates that great sadness beset both man and beast during the entire time of the flood.  It must have been by dint of great patience and extraordinary courage that Noah and the others bore this lapse from God's memory, which is simply unbearable to the flesh without the spirit, even in slight trials.  True, God always remembers his own, even when he seems to have forgotten them; but Moses indicates that he remembered his people here in a visible way, by a sign, and by openly fulfilling what he had previously promised through the Word and the Spirit.  This story sets before us an example of faith, of endurance and patience.   
                                                                                                                                        Martin Luther     

Friday, April 1, 2016

..........All that the Lord Jesus is in himself; all that he has done; all that he does at the present; and all that he has promised to do for his people, deserves the warmest admiration.  This holy feeling is experienced in the breast of the man to whom the Lord can say, “He hath set his love upon me”..........I may go to the palace of the greatest monarch in the world, and be deeply struck with astonishment and admiration at the wonder beheld, but there will not be one thrill of complacency felt in my bosom at the view of the astonishing objects which crowd upon my vision.  Why?  Because I neither have, nor can have any interest in them; they are not mine, nor ever can be; therefore, I cannot take complacent delight in them.  But the love of the Christian is a delightful love, (as Mr. Baxter called it,) because there is in the Lord everything that is worthy of infinite and eternal admiration; and then there is the thought which produces a thrill of pleasure, whatever I admire I can, in some measure, possess.  The illuminated eye of God’s favourite sees everything in the Lord to supply his necessities; everything to satisfy his desires, all his own; which makes the soul delight itself in the Lord, and he rests in his love.  Therefore, the Lord says of the object of his lovingkindness, “He hath set his love upon me”--he hath renounced sin as the greatest abomination; he hath taken off the heart from all idolatrous attachment to the creature, and placed it fixedly supremely upon God.
                                                                                                                                      William Dawson