Friday, 28 April 2017

An arm that can never be broken!

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(J. R. Miller, "A Life of Character")
"The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms!" Deuteronomy 33:27
The picture suggested, is that of a little child, lying in the strong arms of a father who is able to withstand all storms and dangers.
At the two extremes of life, childhood and old age--this promise comes with special assurance.
"He shall gather the lambs in His arms, and carry them in His bosom" (Isaiah 40:11), is a word for the children.
"Even to your old age and gray hairs I am He; I am He who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you!" (Isaiah 46:4), brings its blessed comfort to the aged.
The thought of God's embracing arms is very suggestive. What does an arm represent? What is the thought suggested by the arm of God enfolded around His child?
One suggestion, is protection. As a father puts his arm about his child when it is in danger--so God protects His children. Life is full of peril. There are temptations on every hand! Enemies lurk in every shadow--enemies strong and swift! Yet we are assured that nothing can separate us from the love of God. "Underneath are the everlasting arms!"
Another thought, is affection. The father's arm drawn around a child--is a token of love. The child is held in the father's bosom, near his heart. The shepherd carries the lambs in his bosom. John lay on Jesus' bosom. The mother holds the child in her bosom, because she loves it. This picture of God embracing His children in His arms--tells of His love for them--His love is tender, close, intimate.
Another thought suggested by an arm, is strength. The arm is a symbol of strength. His arm is omnipotence. "In the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength" (Isaiah 26:4). His is an arm that can never be broken! Out of this clasp--we can never be taken. "I give them eternal life, and they will never perish--ever! No one will snatch them out of My hand!" (John 10:28)
Another suggestion is endurance. The arms of God are "everlasting." Human arms grow weary even in love's embrace; they cannot forever press the child to the bosom. Soon they lie folded in death.
A husband stood by the coffin of his beloved wife after only one short year of wedded happiness. The clasp of that love was very sweet--but how brief a time it lasted, and how desolate was the life that had lost the precious companionship!
A little baby two weeks old--was left motherless. The mother clasped the child to her bosom and drew her feeble arms about it in one loving embrace; the little one will never more have a mother's arm around it.
So pathetic is human life with--its broken affections, its little moments of love, its embraces that are torn away in one hour. But these arms of God--are everlasting arms! They shall never unclasp!
There is another important suggestion in the word "underneath." Not only do the arms of God embrace His child--but they are underneath--always underneath! That means that we can never sink--for these arms will ever be beneath us!
Sometimes we say the waters of trouble are very deep--like great floods they roll over us. But still and forever, underneath the deepest floods--are these everlasting arms! We cannot sink below them--or out of their clasp!
And when death comes, and every earthly thing is gone from beneath us, and we sink away into what seems darkness--out of all human love, out of warmth and gladness and life--into the gloom and strange mystery of death--still it will only be--into the everlasting arms!
This view of God's divine care is full of inspiration and comfort. We are not saving ourselves. A strong One, the mighty God--holds us in His omnipotent clasp! We are not tossed like a leaf on life's wild sea--driven at the mercy of wind and wave. We are in divine keeping. Our security does not depend upon our own feeble, wavering faith--but upon the omnipotence, the love, and the faithfulness of the unchanging, the eternal God!
No power in the universe can snatch us out of His hands! Neither death nor life, nor things present, nor things to come--can separate us from His everlasting arms!
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Daily Promises


Blue Letter Bible
April 28, 2017
But he said, Yea rather, blessed [are] they that hear the word of God, and keep it. (Luke 11:28)
Praises everlasting for that most wondrous of gifts: a man who could hear the word of God and keep it! Sing thanks unto the Lord that by His Son's obedience to God's holy law, even unto death, the eternal blessings of the Lord might now fall upon His people. How fortunate are we become, those who serve the Lord in the faith of righteousness! Rejoice, O people, and sing evermore His mighty praise.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

The sufferings of this present time!

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(James Smith, "
No Comparison!" 1862)

"For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time--are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us!" Romans 8:18
Paul compares present sufferings--with future glory.

Believers are exposed to all kinds of suffering, and instead of obtaining an exemption from afflictions--they are assured that it is through much tribulation that they must enter into the kingdom of God.

Some endure inward suffering, with which no one is fully acquainted but God Himself. They have such darkness, gloom, distress, agitation, trouble, and sorrow--as would not be easy to describe.

Some suffer much in body, from the stressed and disordered state of the nervous system, from chronic diseases, or deformities in the physical frame. They seldom move without suffering, and for years together have but little freedom from weakness and pain. They live a life of suffering, a kind of dying life--and think much of Heaven as of a place where there is no more pain.

Some suffer much financially. Scarcely anything seems to prosper with them--losses, crosses, and opposition meet them at every turn. And though they live honestly, and conduct their business honorably--they are thwarted, hindered, and filled with perplexity. No one can tell what they suffer from financial trials and difficulties.

Others suffer from reproach, misrepresentation, strife, and persecution in the world, or in the Church--or both! No one seems to understand them, or is prepared to sympathize with them; they are like "a sparrow alone upon the house-top." False friends and open enemies unite to trouble and distress them, so that they often sigh, and say, "O that I had wings like a dove, for then would I fly away and be at rest!"

Others in the domestic circle, or from some of the relationships of life--are called to suffer long and seriously.

But whether from trouble of mind, sickness of body, trials in business, family difficulties, or persecution for Christ's sake--all suffer, and most believers suffer much!

But compare their present sufferings--with their future glory:
Glory which will exclude all pain and suffering, all sin and sorrow!
Glory beyond the reach of all foes and the cause of all trouble!
Glory which includes happiness--perfect, perpetual, never-ending happiness!
Glory which includes honor--the highest, holiest, and most satisfying honor!
Glory, or splendor--which will fill the soul, clothe the body, and dignify the entire person forever!

Filled with light, peace, and joy; clothed with beauty, brightness, and magnificence--they will appear with Christ in glory--filling them with wonder and unutterable delight!

This glory will be possessed by us--as part of our marriage portion and inalienable inheritance. But we can form no adequate idea of that glory, for "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined--what God has prepared for those who love Him!" 1 Corinthians 2:9
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Morning Devotional April 27, 2017

Psalm 7:17
I will praise the Lord according to his righteousness: and will sing praise to the name of the Lord most high.”

O how we ought to be continually be praising our Lord!!! Whether in word or in song or in deed. He desreves our praise so much more than we know. In this life full of sin our greatest relief from the cares of this old world is to praise the Lord of our salvation!!!
In the midst of trials and persecutions we must praise Him. When all seems lost and we are at our lowest in this life, we must praise Him. When everything seems to be going our way. When the blessings overwhelm us and our cup runneth over. We must praise Him.
Through the good and the bad. Through tribulations and blessings. Praise Him!!!

Praise ye the Lord!!!
 
Stephen McCool Sr.

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

The Lord is My Shepherd

April 26
 
By James Ryle
“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” (Psalms_23:1)
Jesus is Lord and King, Conqueror, Savior, the Mighty God, Prince of Peace, the Christ, Emmanuel, Teacher, Prophet and Master. Of the many titles given to the Lord, Shepherd must undoubtedly be one of His favorite. It links Him in the most personal way to those He loves.
Say it out loud and let the truth settle deep in your heart: “The Lord is my Shepherd.”
Isaiah prophesied, “He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.” (Isaiah_40:11). Peter preached, “For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.” (1Peter_2:25).
David, himself a shepherd, penned the Twenty-third Psalm as a comprehensive tribute to the Lord. He encompasses in this short poem at least fifteen provisions that are made for us when we follow the Lord as our Shepherd.
“The Lord is my Shepherd…
I shall not want for Rest – for He maketh me to lie down in green pastures
I shall not want for Peace – for He leadeth me beside the still waters
I shall not want for Restoration – for He restoreth my soul
I shall not want for Guidance – for He leadeth me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
I shall not want for Courage – for though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil
I shall not want for Companionship – for Thou art with me
I shall not want for Comfort – for Thy rod and Thy staff comfort me
I shall not want for Sustenance – Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of my enemies
I shall not want for Blessing – Thou anointest my head with oil
I shall not want for Fulness – My cup runneth over
I shall not want for Abundant Life – goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life
I shall not want for Eternal Security – I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever
you can see, there is nothing left out. No wonder David said, “I shall not want!” The Lord gives us everything we need when we follow Him as our Shepherd.
“And now may the God of peace, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, equip you with all you need for doing his will. May he who became the great Shepherd of the sheep by an everlasting agreement between God and you, signed with his blood, produce in you through the power of Christ all that is pleasing to him. To him be glory forever and ever. Amen.” (Hebrews_13:20-21).