by J.C. Ryle
The plain truth is that a right knowledge of sin lies at the root of all saving Christianity.
If a man does not realize the dangerous nature of his soul’s disease, you cannot wonder if he is content with false or imperfect remedies.
I say furthermore, that “a sin,” to speak more particularly, consists of doing, saying, thinking, or imagining, anything that is not in perfect conformity with the mind and law of God.
by James Houston
This generation is possibly the first one in which action has been emphasized and valued more than contemplation. Today we think contemplation wastes time, produces nothing, and bumps awkwardly into our schedules. A devotional life is a questionable priority for most successful people today. But are we "successful" Christians if we are so busy organizing and propagating the Christian faith that we really do not know God personally and intimately?"
by K.P. Yohannan
Each and every day, our walk with the Lord and our commitment to him must be fresh and new.
It is of utmost importance that the people who are called to fulfill God’s plan and purpose remain close to him and do not blindly rely on the past.
How is it possible for us to regain or maintain this fresh walk with the Lord…? I believe the answer starts with a conscious decision to daily “humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord (James 4:10) and begin or continue to “seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God (Col. 3:1). And this is possible only if we are willing to repent or forsake all that causes our heart to wander away from the Lord…
by John Stott
Jesus of Nazareth is the heaven-sent Savior we sinners need. We need to be forgiven and restored to fellowship with the all-holy God, from whom our sins have separated us. We need to be set free from our selfishness and given strength to live up to our ideals. We need to learn to love one another, friend and foe alike. This is the meaning of “salvation.” This is what Christ came to win for us by his death and resurrection.
Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what he is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on: you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently he starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make sense. What on earth is he up to? The explanation is that he is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were going to be made into a decent little cottage: but he is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it himself.
from Oswald Chambers
The answer to the question “How can a man be born when he is old?” is – When he is old enough to die – die right out of his “rag rights,” to his virtues, to his religion, to everything, and to receive into himself the life which never was there before. The new life manifests itself in conscious repentance and unconscious holiness.
Is my knowledge of Jesus born of internal spiritual perception, or is it only what I have learned by listening to others?
by John Calvin
Nearly all the wisdom we possess, that is to say, true and sound wisdom, consists of two parts: the knowledge of God and of ourselves. …In the first place, no one can look upon himself without immediately turning his thoughts to the contemplation of God, in whom he “lives and moves.”
Each of us must, then, be so stung by the consciousness of his own unhappiness as to attain at least some knowledge of God. Thus, from the feeling of our own ignorance, vanity, poverty, infirmity, and – what is more – depravity and corruption, we recognize that the true light of wisdom, sound virtue, full abundance of every good, and purity of righteousness, rest in the Lord alone.
To this extent we are prompted by our own ills to contemplate the good things of God; and we cannot seriously aspire to him before we begin to become displeased with ourselves.
Accordingly, the knowledge of ourselves not only arouses us to seek God, but also as it were, leads us by the hand to find him.
Year of Grace 1654
From about half past ten at night to about half an hour after midnight,
“God of Abraham, God of Isaac, God of Jacob” (Exodus 3:6), not of philosophers and scholars.
Certitude, heartfelt joy, peace.
God of Jesus Christ.
God of Jesus Christ.
“My God and Your God” (John 20:17).
“Your God shall be my God” (Ruth 1:16).
The world forgotten, everything except God.
He can only be found by the ways that have been taught in the Gospels.
Greatness of the human soul.
“O righteous Father, the world has not known You, but I have known You” (John 17:25).
Joy, Joy, Joy, tears of joy.
I have separated myself from him.
“They have forsaken me, the spring of living water” (Jeremiah 2:13)
“My God, will you leave me?” (cf. Matthew 2746).
Let me not be cut off from him forever!
“Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent” (John 17:3).
I am separated from him; for I have shunned him, denied him, crucified him.
May I never be separated from him.
He can only be kept by the ways taught in the gospel.
Complete and sweet renunciation.
Total submission to Jesus Christ and to my director.
Everlasting joy in return for one day’s striving upon earth.
“I will not neglect your word” (Psalm 119:16) Amen.
by Blaise Pascal – Discovered on a piece of parchment on which Pascal recorded the decisive experience of 1654 when he was converted. This testimony was found sewn into his clothing after his death. It appears that he carried it with him at all times. (Os Guinness)
by Oswald Chambers
We have the idea that God rewards us for our faith, it may be so in the initial stages; but we do not earn anything by faith, faith brings us into right relationship with God and gives God his opportunity.
God wants you to understand that it is a life of faith, not a life of sentimental enjoyment of his blessings.
Your earlier life of faith was narrow and intense, settled around a little sun-spot of experience that as much of sense as of faith in it, full of light and sweetness; then God withdrew his conscious blessings in order to teach you to walk by faith. You are worth far more to him now than you were in your days of conscious delight and thrilling testimony.
…Faith in the Bible is faith in God against everything that contradicts him – I will remain true to God’s character whatever he may do. “Though he slay me, yet will I trust him” (Job 13:15) - this is the most sublime utterance of faith in the whole of the Bible.
by Thomas a Kempis
Every man naturally wants to know, but what is the good of knowledge without the fear of God? …He who knows himself well becomes cheap in his own eyes, and takes no pleasure in the praises of men.
And foolish indeed is he who gives his attention to other things than those which make for his salvation.
The greater and better your knowledge, so much the more severely will you be judged, unless you have lived a more holy life.
This is the highest knowledge and the most useful lesson – to have true understanding and small opinion of oneself. To hold no high opinion of oneself, and always to judge well and highly of others, is great wisdom and high perfection.
The Fellowship of The Burning Heart
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