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Complete Works of Augustus Toplady

(57 posts)

Lord’s Day 26, 2008

Sunday··2008·06·29
I reioyced, when they sayd to me, We wil go into the house of the Lord. (Psalme 122:1) Petitionary Hymns Poem VII. In Sickness Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Jesus, since I with thee am one,Confirm my soul in thee,And still continue to tread downThe man of sin in me. Let not the subtle foe prevail In this my feeble hour, Frustrate all the hopes of hell Redeem from Satan’s pow’r. Arm me, O Lord, from head to foot, With righteousness divine; My soul in Jesus firmly root, And seal the Saviour mine. Proportion’d to my pains below, O let my joys increase, And mercy to my spirit flow In healing streams of peace. In life and death be thou my God, And I am more than safe: Chastis’d by thy paternal rod, Support me with thy staff. Lay on me, Saviour, what thou wilt, But give me strength to bear: Thy gracious hand this cross hath dealt, Which cannot be severe. As gold refin’d may I come out, In sorrow’s furnace try’d; Preserved from faithfulness and doubt, And fully purify’d. When, overwhelm’d with sore distress, Out of the pit I cry, On Jesus suffering in my place Help me to fix mine eye. When marr’d with tears, and blood, and sweat, The glorious sufferer lay, And in my stead sustain’d the heat And burden of the day. The pangs which my weak nature knows Are swallow’d up in thine: How numberless thy pondrous woes! How few, how light are mine! O might I learn of thee to bear Temptation, pain and loss! Give me a heart inur’d to prayer, And fitted to the cross. Make me, O Lord, thy patient son; Thy language mine shall be: “Father, thy gracious will be done, I take the cup from thee.” While thus my soul is fixt on him Once fasten’d to the wood, Safe shall I pass through Jordan’s stream, And reach the realms of God. And when my soul mounts up to keep With thee the marriage feast, I shall not die, but fall asleep On my Redeemer’s breast. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Psalme 95 (Geneva Bible) 1 Come, let vs reioyce vnto the Lord: let vs sing aloude vnto the rocke of our saluation. 2 Let vs come before his face with praise: let vs sing loude vnto him with Psalmes. 3 For the Lord is a great God, and a great King aboue all gods. 4 In whose hande are the deepe places of the earth, and the heightes of the mountaines are his: 5 To whome the Sea belongeth: for hee made it, and his handes formed the dry land. 6 Come, let vs worship and fall downe, and kneele before the Lord our maker. 7 For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheepe of his hande: to day, if ye will heare his voyce, 8 Harden not your heart, as in Meribah, and as in the day of Massah in the wildernesse. 9 Where your fathers tempted me, proued me, though they had seene my worke. 10 Fourtie yeeres haue I contended with this generation, and said, They are a people that erre in heart, for they haue not knowen my wayes. 11 Wherefore I sware in my wrath, saying, Surely they shall not enter into my rest. Grace be with you, and Peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Lord’s Day 32, 2008

Sunday··2008·08·10
I reioyced, when they sayd to me, We wil go into the house of the Lord. (Psalme 122:1) Petitionary Hymns Poem VIII. John xiv. 17. He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Savior, I thy word believe, My unbelief remove; Now thy quick’ning Spirit give, The unction from above; Shew me, Lord, how good thou art, My soul with all thy fulness fill: Send the witness in my heart The Holy Ghost reveal. Dead in sin ’till then I lie, Bereft of power to rise; Till thy Spirit inwardly Thy saving blood applies: Now the mighty gift impart, My sin erase, my pardon seal: Send the witness, in my heart The Holy Ghost reveal. Blessed Comforter, come down, And live and move in me; Make my every deed thy own, In all things led by thee: Bid my every lust depart, And with me O vouchsafe to dwell; Faithful witness, in my heart Thy perfect light reveal. Let me in thy love rejoice, Thy shrine, thy pure abode; Tell me, by thine inward voice, That I’m a child of God: Lord, I choose the better part, Jesus, I wait thy peace to feel; Send the witness in my heart The Holy Ghost reveal. Whom the world cannot receive, O manifest in me: Son of God, I cease to live, Unless I live in thee Now impute thy whole desert, Restore the joy from which I fell: Breathe the witness, in my heart The Holy Ghost reveal. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Psalme 137 (Geneva Bible) 1 By the riuers of Babel we sate, and there wee wept, when we remembred Zion. 2 Wee hanged our harpes vpon the willowes in the middes thereof. 3 Then they that ledde vs captiues, required of vs songs and mirth, when wee had hanged vp our harpes, saying, Sing vs one of the songs of Zion. 4 Howe shall we sing, said we, a song of the Lord in a strange land? 5 If I forget thee, O Ierusalem, let my right hand forget to play. 6 If I do not remember thee, let my tongue cleaue to the roofe of my mouth: yea, if I preferre not Ierusalem to my chiefe ioy. 7 Remember the children of Edom, O Lord, in the day of Ierusalem, which saide, Rase it, rase it to the foundation thereof. 8 O daughter of Babel, worthy to be destroyed, blessed shall he be that rewardeth thee, as thou hast serued vs. 9 Blessed shall he be that taketh and dasheth thy children against the stones. Grace be with you, and Peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Lord’s Day 38, 2008

Sunday··2008·09·21
I reioyced, when they sayd to me, We wil go into the house of the Lord. (Psalme 122:1) PETITIONARY HYMNS POEM IX. On War Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Great God, whom heav’n, and earth, and sea With all their countless hosts, obey, Upheld by whom the nations stand, And empires fall at thy command: Beneath thy long suspended ire Let papal Antichrist expire; Thy knowledge spread from sea to sea, ’Till every nation bows to thee.Then shew thyself the prince of peace, Make every hostile efforts cease: All with thy sacred love inspire, And burn their chariots in the fire.In sunder break each warlike spear; Let all the Saviour’s liv’ry wear; The universal Sabbath prove, The utmost rest of Christian love!The world shall then no discord know, But hand in hand to Canaan go, Jesus, the peaceful king, adore, And learn the art of war no more. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Psalme 150 (Geneva Bible) 1 Praise ye the Lord. Praise ye God in his Sanctuarie: prayse ye him in the firmament of his power. 2 Prayse ye him in his mightie Actes: prayse ye him according to his excellent greatnesse. 3 Prayse ye him in the sounde of the trumpet: prayse yee him vpon the viole and the harpe. 4 Prayse ye him with timbrell and flute: praise ye him with virginales and organs. 5 Prayse ye him with sounding cymbales: prayse ye him with high sounding cymbales. 6 Let euery thing that hath breath prayse the Lord. Prayse ye the Lord. Grace be with you, and Peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Lords Day 44, 2008

Sunday··2008·11·02
I reioyced, when they sayd to me, We wil go into the house of the Lord. (Psalme 122:1) PETITIONARY HYMNS POEM X. Desiring to be given up to God Augustus Toplady (17401778) O that my heart was right with thee, And lovd thee with a perfect love! O that my Lord would dwell in me, And never from his seat remove! Jesus, remove th impending load, And set my soul on fire for God! Thou seest I dwell in awful night Until thou in my heart appear; Kindle the flame, O Lord, and light Thine everlasting candle there: Thy presence puts the shadows by; If thou art gone, how dark am I! Ah! Lord, how should thy servant see, Unless thou give me seeing eyes? Well may I fall, if out of thee; If out of thee, how should I rise? I wander, Lord, without thy aid, And lose my way in midnights shade. Thy bright, unerring light afford, A light that gives the sinner hope; And from the house of bondage, Lord, O bring the weary captive up, Thine hand alone can set me free And reach my pardon out to me. O let my prayer acceptance find, And bring the mighty blessing down; With eye-salve, Lord, anoint the blind, And seal me thine adopted son: A fallen, helpless creature take, And heir of thy salvation make. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Psalme 42 (Geneva Bible) To him that excelleth. A Psalme to give instruction, committed to the sonnes of Korah. 1 As the harte brayeth for the riuers of water, so panteth my soule after thee, O God. 2 My soule thirsteth for God, euen for the liuing God: when shall I come and appeare before the presence of God? 3 My teares haue bin my meate day and night, while they dayly say vnto me, Where is thy God? 4 When I remembred these things, I powred out my very heart, because I had gone with the multitude, and ledde them into the House of God with the voyce of singing, and prayse, as a multitude that keepeth a feast. 5 Why art thou cast downe, my soule, and vnquiet within me? waite on God: for I will yet giue him thankes for the helpe of his presence. 6 My God, my soule is cast downe within me, because I remember thee, from the land of Iorden, and Hermonim, and from the mount Mizar. 7 One deepe calleth another deepe by the noyse of thy water spoutes: all thy waues and thy floods are gone ouer me. 8 The Lord will graunt his louing kindenesse in the day, and in the night shall I sing of him, euen a prayer vnto the God of my life. 9 I wil say vnto God, which is my rocke, Why hast thou forgotten mee? why goe I mourning, when the enemie oppresseth me? 10 My bones are cut asunder, while mine enemies reproch me, saying dayly vnto me, Where is thy God? 11 Why art thou cast downe, my soule? and why art thou disquieted within mee? waite on God: for I wil yet giue him thankes: he is my present helpe, and my God. Grace be with you, and Peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Lords Day 50, 2008

Sunday··2008·12·14
I reioyced, when they sayd to me, We wil go into the house of the Lord. (Psalme 122:1) PETITIONARY HYMNS POEM XI. Matt. viii. 25. Lord, save us, we perish. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Pilot of the soul, awake, Save us for thy mercies sake; Now rebuke the angry deep, Save, O save thy sinking ship! Stand at the helm, our vessel steer, Mighty on our side appear Saviour, teach us to descry Where the rocks and quicksands lie. The waves shall impotently roll, If thou rt the anchor of the soul: At thy word the wind shall cease, Storms be hushd to perfect peace. Be thou our haven of retreat, A rock to fix our wavring feet, Teach us to own thy sovereign sway, Whom the winds and seas obey. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Psalme 84 (Geneva Bible) To him that excelleth upon Gittith. A Psalme committed to the sonnes of Korah. 1 O Lord of hostes, howe amiable are thy Tabernacles! 2 My soule longeth, yea, and fainteth for the courtes of the Lord: for mine heart and my flesh reioyce in the liuing God. 3 Yea, the sparrowe hath found her an house, and the swallow a nest for her, where she may lay her yong: euen by thine altars, O Lord of hostes, my King and my God. 4 Blessed are they that dwell in thine house: they will euer praise thee. Selah. 5 Blessed is the man, whose strength is in thee, and in whose heart are thy wayes. 6 They going through the vale of Baca, make welles therein: the raine also couereth the pooles. 7 They goe from strength to strength, till euery one appeare before God in Zion. 8 O Lord God of hostes, heare my prayer: hearken, O God of Iaakob. Selah. 9 Beholde, O God, our shielde, and looke vpon the face of thine Anointed. 10 For a day in thy courtes is better then a thousand other where: I had rather be a doore keeper in the House of my God, then to dwell in the Tabernacles of wickednesse. 11 For the Lord God is the sunne and shielde vnto vs: the Lord will giue grace and glory, and no good thing will he withhold from them that walke vprightly. 12 O Lord of hostes, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee. Grace be with you, and Peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Lords Day 5, 2009

Sunday··2009·02·01
I reioyced, when they sayd to me, We wil go into the house of the Lord. (Psalme 122:1) PETITIONARY HYMNS POEM XII. O that my ways were made so direct, &c. Augustus Toplady (17401778) O that my ways were made so strait, And that the lamp of faith Would, as a star, direct my feet Within the narrow path! O that thy strength might enter now,    And in my heart abide, To make me as a faithful bow    That never starts aside! O that I all to Christ were given,    (From sin and earth set free) Who kindly laid aside his heaven,    And gave himself for me! Not more the panting hart desires    The cool, refreshing stream Than my dry, thirsty soul aspires    At being one with him. Set up thine image in my heart;    Thy temple let us be, Bid every idol now depart    That fain would rival thee. Still keep me In the heavenly path    Bestow the inward light; And lead me by the hand till faith    Is ripened into sight. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Psalme 119:3340 (Geneva Bible) He. 33 Teach mee, O Lord, the way of thy statutes, and I will keepe it vnto the ende. 34 Giue mee vnderstanding, and I will keepe thy Law: yea, I wil keepe it with my whole heart. 35 Direct mee in the path of thy commandements: for therein is my delite. 36 Incline mine heart vnto thy testimonies, and not to couetousnesse. 37 Turne away mine eies from regarding vanitie, and quicken me in thy way. 38 Stablish thy promise to thy seruaunt, because he feareth thee. 39 Take away my rebuke that I feare: for thy iudgements are good. 40 Beholde, I desire thy commandements: quicken me in thy righteousnesse, Grace be with you, and Peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Lords Day 11, 2009

Sunday··2009·03·15
I reioyced, when they sayd to me, We wil go into the house of the Lord. (Psalme 122:1) PETITIONARY HYMNS POEM XIII. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Father, to thee In Christ I fly, What tho my sins of crimson dye For thy resentment call? My crimes he did on Calvry bear, The blood that flowd for sinners there Shall cleanse me from them all. Spirit divine, thy powr bring in, O raise me from this depth of sin,    Take off my guilty load: Now let me live through Jesus death, And being justified by faith,    May I have peace with God! Foul as I am, deserving hell, Thou canst not from thy throne repel    A soul that leans on God: My sins at thy command shall be Cast as a stone into the sea    The sea of Jesus blood. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Psalme 119:8188 (Geneva Bible) Caph. 81 My soule fainteth for thy saluation: yet I waite for thy worde. 82 Mine eyes faile for thy promise, saying, when wilt thou comfort me? 83 For I am like a bottell in the smoke: yet doe I not forget thy statutes. 84 Howe many are the dayes of thy seruant? When wilt thou execute iudgement on them that persecute me? 85 The proude haue digged pittes for mee, which is not after thy Lawe. 86 All thy commandements are true: they persecute me falsely: helpe me. 87 They had almost consumed me vpon the earth: but I forsooke not thy precepts. 88 Quicken me according to thy louing kindnes: so shall I keepe the testimony of thy mouth. Grace be with you, and Peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Lords Day 17, 2009

Sunday··2009·04·26
I reioyced, when they sayd to me, We wil go into the house of the Lord. (Psalme 122:1) PETITIONARY HYMNS POEM XIV. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) SUPREME High Priest, the pilgrims light, My heart for thee prepare, Thine image stamp, and deeply write Thy superscription there. Ah! let my forehead bear thy seal,    My arm thy badge retain, My heart the inward witness feel    That I am born again! Thy peace, O Saviour, shed abroad,    That every want supplies: Then from its guilt my soul renewd,    Shall, ph?nix like, arise. Into thy humble mansion come.    Set up thy dwelling here: Possess my heart, and leave no room    For sin to harbour there. Ah! give me, Lord, the single eye,    Which aims at nought but thee: I fain would live, and yet not I    Let Jesus live in me. Like Noahs dove, no rest I find    But in thy ark of peace; Thy cross the balance of my mind,    Thy wounds my hiding-place. In vain the tempter spreads the snare,    If thou my keeper art: Get thee behind me, God is near,    My Saviour takes my part! On him my spirit I recline,    Who put my nature on; His light shall in my darkness shine,    And guide me to his throne. O that the penetrating sight,    And eagles eye were mine Undazzled at the boundless light    Id see his glory shine! Evn now , by faith, I see him live    To crown the conquering few; Nor let me linger here, but strive    To gain the prize in view. Add, Saviour, to the eagles eye,    The cloves aspiring wing, To bear me upwards to the sky,    Thy praises there to sing! —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Psalme 119:129136 (Geneva Bible) Pe. 129 Thy testimonies are wonderfull: therefore doeth my soule keepe them. 130 The entrance into thy wordes sheweth light, and giueth vnderstanding to the simple. 131 I opened my mouth and panted, because I loued thy commandements. 132 Looke vpon mee and bee mercifull vnto me, as thou vsest to doe vnto those that loue thy Name. 133 Direct my steppes in thy worde, and let none iniquitie haue dominion ouer me. 134 Deliuer mee from the oppression of men, and I will keepe thy precepts. 135 Shew the light of thy countenance vpon thy seruant, and teache me thy statutes. 136 Mine eyes gush out with riuers of water, because they keepe not thy Lawe. Grace be with you, and Peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Lord���s Day 23, 2009

Sunday··2009·06·07
I was glad when they said to me, ���Let us go to the house of the Lord.��� PETITIONARY HYMNS POEM XV. Self Dedication. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Jesus, my Saviour, fill my heart With nothing else but thee; Now thy saving pow���r exert, And more than conquer me: Each intruding rival kill, That Minders or obstructs thy reign: All thy glorious might reveal, And make me pure within. Through my soul in mercy shine,    Thine Holy Spirit give; Let him witness, Lord, with mine    That I in Jesus live; Set me free from Satan���s load,    The gift of Liberty dispense, In my heart O shed abroad    Thy quick���ning influence. Let the gifts bestow���d on me,    Live to thy praise alone; Lord, the talents lent by thee    Are thine and not my own: May I in thy service spend    All the graces thou has given, Taken up, when time shall end,    To live and reign in heaven. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Having finished the Psalms from the Geneva Bible, I am now going to begin the Gospel of John. I���ll be using the NASB, and including commentary from J. C. Ryle���s Expository Thoughts on the Gospels. The Gospel According to John 1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. The Gospel of John, which begins with these verses, is in many respects very unlike the other three Gospels. It contains many things which they omit. It omits many things which they contain. Good reason might easily be shown for this unlikeness. But it is enough to remember that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John wrote under the direct inspiration of God. In the general plan of their respective Gospels, and in the particular details,���in everything that they record, and in everything that they do not record,���they were all four equally and entirely guided by the Holy Spirit. About the matters which John was specially inspired to relate in his Gospel, one general remark will suffice. The things which are peculiar to his Gospel are among the most precious possessions of the Church of Christ. No one of the four Gospel-writers has given us such full statements about the divinity of Christ,���about justification by faith,���about the offices of Christ,���about the work of the Holy Ghost,���and about the privileges of believers, as we read in the pages of St. John. On none of these great subjects, undoubtedly, have Matthew, Mark, and Luke been silent. But in St. John���s Gospel, they stand out prominently on the surface, so that he who runs may read. The five verses now before us contain a statement of matchless sublimity concerning the divine nature of our Lord Jesus Christ. He it is, beyond all question, whom St. John means, when he speaks of ���the Word.��� No doubt there are heights and depths in that statement which are far beyond man���s understanding. And yet there are plain lessons in it, which every Christian would do well to treasure up in his mind. We learn, firstly, that our Lord Jesus Christ is eternal. St. John tells as that ���in the beginning was the Word.��� He did not begin to exist when the heavens and the earth were made. Much less did He begin to exist when the Gospel was brought into the world. He had glory with the Father ���before the world was.��� (John xvii. 5.) He was existing when matter was first created, and before time began. He was ���before all things.��� (Col. i. 17.) He was from all eternity. We learn, secondly, that our Lord Jesus Christ is a Person distinct from God the Father, and yet one with Him. St. John tells us that ���the Word was with God.��� The Father and the Word, though two persons, are joined by an ineffable union. Where God the Father was from all eternity, there also was the Word, even God the Son,���their glory equal, their majesty co-eternal, and yet their Godhead one This is a great mystery! Happy is he who can receive it as a little child, without attempting to explain it. We learn, thirdly, that the Lord Jesus Christ is very God. St. John tells us that ���the Word was God.��� He is not merely a created angel, or a being inferior to God the Father, and invested by Him with power to redeem sinners. He is nothing less than perfect God,���equal to the father as touching His Godhead,���God of the substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds. We learn, fourthly, that the Lord Jesus Christ is the Creator of all things. St. John tells us that ���by Him were all things made, and without Him was not any thing made that was made.��� So far from being a creature of God, as some heretics have falsely asserted, He is the Being who made the worlds and all that they contain. ���He commanded and they were created.��� (Psalm xl. 8.) We learn, lastly, that the Lord Jesus Christ is the source of all spiritual life and light. St. John tells us, that ���in Him was life, and the life was the light of men.��� He is the eternal fountain, from which alone the sons of men have ever derived life. Whatever spiritual life and light Adam and Eve possessed before the fall, was from Christ. Whatever deliverance from sin and spiritual death any child of Adam has ever enjoyed since the fall, whatever light of conscience or understanding any one has obtained, all has flowed from Christ. The vast majority of mankind in every age have refused to know Him, have forgotten the fall, and their own need of a Savior. The light has been constantly shining "in darkness." The most have "not comprehended the light." But if any men and women out of the countless millions of mankind have ever had spiritual life and light, they have owed all to Christ. Such is a brief summary of the leading lessons which these wonderful verses appear to contain. There is much in them, without controversy, which is above our reason but there is nothing contrary to it. There is much that we cannot explain, and must be content humbly to believe. Let us however never forget that there are plain practical consequences flowing from the passage, which we can never grasp to firmly, or know too well. Would we know, for one thing, the exceeding sinfulness of sin? Let us often read these first five verses of St. John���s Gospel. Let us mark what kind of Being the Redeemer of mankind must needs be, in order to provide eternal redemption for sinners. If no one less than the Eternal God, the Creator and Preserver of all things, could take away the sin of the world, sin must be a far more abominable thing in the sight of God than most men suppose. The right measure of sin���s sinfulness is the dignity of Him who came into the world to save sinners. If Christ is so great, then sin must indeed be sinful! Would we know, for another thing, the strength of a true Christian���s foundation for hope? Let us often read these first five verses of St. John���s Gospel. Let us mark that the Saviour in whom the believer is bid to trust is nothing less than the Eternal God, One able to save to the uttermost all that come to the Father by Him. He that was ���with God,��� and ���was God,��� is also ���Emmanuel, God with us.��� Let us thank God that our help is laid on One that is mighty. (Psalm lxxxix. 19.) In ourselves we are great sinners. But in Jesus Christ we have a great Saviour. He is a strong foundation-stone, able to bear the weight of a world���s sin. He that believeth on Him shall not be confounded. (1 Peter ii. 6.) ���J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012), 3:1���4 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 29, 2009

Sunday··2009·07·19
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. PETITIONARY HYMNS POEM XVII. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) O may I never rest Till I find rest in thee; Till of my pardon here possessd I feel thy love to me! Unseal my darkend eyes, My fetterd feet unbind, The lame shall, when thou sayst Arise, Run swifter than the hind. O draw the alien near,    Bend the obdurate neck, O melt the flint into a tear,    And teach the dumb to speak: Turn not thy face away.    Thy look can make me clean; Me in thy wedding robe array,    And cover all my sin. Tell me, my God, for whom    Thy precious blood was shed; For sinners! Lord, as such I come,    For such the Saviour bled: Then raise a fallen wretch,    Display thy grace in me! I am not out of mercys reach,    Nor too far gone for thee. Thou quickly wilt forgive,    My Lord will not delay; Jesus, to thee the time I leave,    And wait the accepted day: I now rejoice in hope    That I shall be made clean: Thy grace shall surely lift me up    Above the reach of sin. Hast thou not died for me,    And calld me from below! O help me to lay hold on thee,    And neer to let ,thee go! Though on the billows tossd,    My Saviour Ill pursue: Awhile submit to bear his cross,    Then share his glory too. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). John 1:3542 Andrew and Peter follow Christ   35 Again the next day John was standing with two of his disciples, 36 and he looked at Jesus as He walked, and said, Behold, the Lamb of God! 37 The two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. 38 And Jesus turned and saw them following, and said to them, What do you seek?" They said to Him, "Rabbi (which translated means Teacher), where are You staying? 39 He said to them, Come, and you will see. So they came and saw where He was staying; and they stayed with Him that day, for it was about the tenth hour. 40 One of the two who heard John speak and followed Him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. 41 He found first his own brother Simon and said to him, We have found the Messiah (which translated means Christ). 42 He brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, You are Simon the son of John; you shall be called Cephas (which is translated Peter). These verses ought always to be interesting to every true Christian. They describe the first beginnings of the Christian Church. Vast as that church is now, there was a time when it consisted of only two weak members. The calling of those two members is described in the passage which is now before our eyes. We see, for one thing, in these verses, what good is done by continually testifying of Christ. The first time that John the Baptist cried, Behold the Lamb of God, no result appears to have followed. We are not told of any who heard, inquired, and believed. But when he repeated the same words the next day, we read that two of his disciples heard him speak and followed Jesus. They were received most graciously by Him whom they followed. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day. Truly it was a day in their lives most eventful, and most blessed! From that day they became fast and firm disciples of the new-found Messiah. They took up the cross. They continued with Him in His temptations. They followed Him wherever He went. One of them at least, if not both, became a chosen apostle, and a master builder in the Christian temple. And all was owing to John the Baptists testimony, Behold the lamb of God. That testimony was a little seed. But it bore mighty fruits. This simple story is a pattern of the way in which good has been done to souls in every age of the Christian Church. By such testimony as that before us, and by none else, men and women are converted and saved. It is by exalting Christ, not the church,Christ, not the sacraments,Christ, not the ministry,it is by this means that hearts are moved, and sinners are turned to God. To the world such testimony may seem weakness and foolishness. Yet, like the rams horns, before whose blast the walls of Jericho fell down, this testimony is mighty to the pulling down of strongholds. The story of the crucified Lamb of God has proved in every age, the power of God unto salvation. Those who have done most for Christs cause in every part of the world, have been men like John the Baptist. They have not cried, Behold me, or Behold the church, or Behold the ordinances, but Behold the Lamb. If souls are to be saved, men must be pointed directly to Christ. One thing, however, must never be forgotten. There must be patient continuance in preaching and teaching the truth, if we want good to be done. Christ must be set forth again and again, as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. The story of grace must be told repeatedly,line upon line, and precept upon precept. It is the constant dropping which wears away the stone. The promise shall never be broken, that Gods word shall not return unto him void. (Isaiah lv. 11.) But it is nowhere said that it shall do good the very first time that it is preached. It was not the first proclamation of John the Baptist, but the second, which made Andrew and his companion follow Jesus. We see, for another thing, what good a believer may do to others, by speaking to them about Christ. No sooner does Andrew become a disciple, than he tells his brother Simon what a discovery he has made. Like one who has unexpectedly heard good tidings, he hastens to impart it to the one nearest and dearest to him. He says to his brother, We have found the Messias, and he brings him to Jesus. Who can tell what might have happened if Andrew had been of a silent, reserved, and uncommunicative spirit, like many a Christian in the present day? Who can tell but his brother might have lived and died a fisherman on the Galilean lake? But happily for Simon, Andrew was not a man of this sort. He was one whose heart was so full that he must speak. And to Andrews out-spoken testimony, under God, the great apostle Peter owed the first beginning of light in his soul. The fact before us is most striking and instructive. Out of the three first members of the Christian Church, one at least was brought to Jesus, by the private, quiet word of a relative. He seems to have heard no public preaching. He saw no mighty miracle wrought. He was not convinced by any powerful reasoning. He only heard his brother telling him that he had found a Saviour himself, and at once the work began in his soul. The simple testimony of a warm-hearted brother was the first link in the chain by which Peter was drawn out of the world, and joined to Christ. The first blow in that mighty work by which Peter was made a pillar of the Church, was struck by Andrews words, We have found the Christ. Well would it be for the Church of Christ, if all believers were more like Andrew! Well would it be for souls if all men and women who have been converted themselves, would speak to their friends and relatives on spiritual subjects, and tell them what they have found! How much good might be done! How many might be led to Jesus, who now live and die in unbelief! The work of testifying the Gospel of the grace of God ought not to be left to ministers alone. All who have received mercy ought to find a tongue, and to declare what God has done for their souls. All who have been delivered from the power of the devil, ought to go home and tell their friends what great things God has done for them. (Mark v. 19.) Thousands, humanly speaking, would listen to a word from a friend, who will not listen to a sermon. Every believer ought to be a home-missionary, a missionary to his family, children, servants, neighbors, and friends. Surely, if we can find nothing to say to others about Jesus, we may well doubt whether we are savingly acquainted with Him ourselves. Let us take heed that we are among those who really follow Christ, and abide with Him. It is not enough to hear Him preached from the pulpit, and to read of Him as described in books. We must actually follow Him, pour out our hearts before Him, and hold personal communion with Him. Then, and not until then, we shall feel constrained to speak of Him to others. The man who only knows Christ by the hearing of the ear, will never do much for the spread of Christs cause in the earth. J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012), 3:6870. Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 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Lords Day 35, 2009

Sunday··2009·08·30
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. PETITIONARY HYMNS POEM XVIII. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) From Justices consuming flame, Saviour, I fly to thee; O look not on me as I am, But as I fain would be. Deserted in the way I lie,    No cure for me is found: Thou, good Samaritan, pass by,    And bind up every wound. O may I in the final day    At thy right-hand appear! Take thou my sins out of the way,    Who didst the burden bear. What though the fiery serpents bite    Hath poisoned evry vein Ill not despair, but keep in sight    The wounds of Jesus slain. My soul thou wilt from death retrieve,    For sorrow grant me joy, Thy power is mightier to save    Than Satans to destroy. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). John 3:2236 John the Baptist Witnesses Concerning Christ    22 After these things Jesus and His disciples came into the land of Judea, and there He was spending time with them and baptizing. 23 John also was baptizing in Aenon near Salim, because there was much water there; and people were coming and were being baptized 24 for John had not yet been thrown into prison. 25 Therefore there arose a discussion on the part of Johns disciples with a Jew about purification. 26 And they came to John and said to him, Rabbi, He who was with you beyond the Jordan, to whom you have testified, behold, He is baptizing and all are coming to Him. 27 John answered and said, A man can receive nothing unless it has been given him from heaven. 28 You yourselves are my witnesses that I said, I am not the Christ, but, I have been sent ahead of Him. 29 He who has the bride is the bridegroom; but the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him rejoices greatly because of the bridegrooms voice So this joy of mine has been made full. 30 He must increase, but I must decrease. 31 He who comes from above is above all, he who is of the earth is from the earth and speaks of the earth He who comes from heaven is above all. 32 What He has seen and heard, of that He testifies; and no one receives His testimony. 33 He who has received His testimony has set his seal to this, that God is true. 34 For He whom God has sent speaks the words of God; for He gives the Spirit without measure. 35 The Father loves the Son and has given all things into His hand. 36 He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him. On one account, this passage deserves the special attention of all devout readers of the Bible. It contains the last testimony of John the Baptist concerning our Lord Jesus Christ. That faithful man of God was the same at the end of his ministry that he was at the beginningthe same in his views of self,the same in his views of Christ. Happy is that church whose ministers are as steady, bold, and constant to one thing, as John the Baptist! We have, firstly, in these verses, a humbling example of the petty jealousies and party-spirit which may exist among professors of religion. We are told, that the disciples of John the Baptist were offended, because the ministry of Jesus began to attract more attention than that of their master. They came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold the same baptizeth, and all men come to him. The spirit exhibited in this complaint, is unhappily too common in the Churches of Christ. The succession of these complainers has never failed. There are never lacking religions professors who care far more for the increase of their own party, than for the increase of true Christianity; and who cannot rejoice in the spread of religion, if it spreads anywhere except within their own denomination. There is a generation which can see no good being done, except in the ranks of its own congregations; and which seems ready to shut men out of heaven, if they will not enter therein under their banner. The true Christian must watch and pray against the spirit here manifested by Johns disciples. It is very insidious, very contagious, and very injurious to the cause of religion. Nothing so defiles Christianity and gives the enemies of truth such occasion to blaspheme, as jealousy and party-spirit among Christians. Wherever there is real grace, we should be ready and willing to acknowledge it, even though it may be outside our own pale. We should strive to say with the apostle, If Christ be preached, I rejoice, yea! and will rejoice. (Phil. i. 18.) If good is done, we ought to be thankful, though it even may not be done in what we think the best way. If souls are saved, we ought to be glad, whatever be the means that God may think fit to employ. We have, secondly, in these verses, a splendid pattern of true and godly humility. We see in John the Baptist a very different spirit from that displayed by his disciples. He begins by laying down the great principle, that acceptance with man is a special gift of God; and that we must therefore not presume to find fault, when others have more acceptance than ourselves. A man can receive nothing except it be given him from heaven. He goes on to remind his followers of his repeated declaration, that one greater than himself was coming; I said, I am not the Christ. He tells those who his office compared to that of Christ, is that of the bridegrooms friend, compared to the bridegroom. And finally, he solemnly affirms, that Christ must and will become greater and greater, and that he himself must become less and less important, until, like a star eclipsed by the rising sun, he has completely disappeared. A frame of mind like this, is the highest degree of grace to which mortal man can attain. The greatest saint in the sight of God, is the man who is most thoroughly clothed with humility. (1 Peter v. 5.) Would we know the prime secret of being men of the stamp of Abraham, and Moses, and Job, and David, and Daniel, and St. Paul, and John the Baptist? They were all eminently humble men. Living at different ages, and enjoying very different degrees of light, in this matter at least they were all agreed. In themselves they saw nothing but sin and weakness. To God they gave all the praise of what they were. Let us walk in their steps. Let us covet earnestly the best gifts; but above all, let us covet humility. The way to true honour is to be humble. No man ever was so praised by Christ, as the very man who says here, I must decrease, the humble John the Baptist. We have, thirdly, in these verses, an instructive declaration of Christs honour and dignity. John the Baptist teaches his disciples once more, the true greatness of the Person whose growing popularity offended them. Once more, and perhaps for the last time, he proclaims Him as one worthy of all honour and praise. He uses one striking expression after another, to convey a correct idea of the majesty of Christ. He speaks of Him as the bridegroom of the Church,as him that comes from above,as him whom God has sent,as him to whom the Spirit is given without measure,as Him whom the Father loves, and into whose hands all things are given,to believe in whom is life everlasting, and to reject whom is eternal ruin. Each of these phrases is full of deep meaning, and would supply matter for a long sermon. All show the depth and height of Johns spiritual attainments. More honourable things are nowhere written concerning Jesus, than these verses recorded as spoken by John the Baptist. Let us endeavor in life and death, to hold the same views of the Lord Jesus, to which John here gives expression. We can never make too much of Christ. Our thoughts about the Church, the ministry, and the sacraments, may easily become too high and extravagant. We can never have too high thoughts about Christ, can never love Him too much, trust Him too implicitly, lay too much weight upon Him, and speak too highly in His praise. He is worthy of all the honour that we can give Him. He will be all in heaven. Let us see to it, that He is all in our hearts on earth. We have, lastly, in these verses, a broad assertion of the nearness and presentness of the salvation of true Christians. John the Baptist declares, He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life. He is not intended to look forward with a sick heart to a far distant privilege. He hath everlasting life as soon as he believes. Pardon, peace, and a complete title to Heaven, are an immediate possession. They become a believers own, from the very moment he puts faith in Christ. They will not be more completely his own, if he lives to the age of Methuselah. The truth before us, is one of the most glorious privileges of the Gospel. There are no works to be done, no conditions to be fulfilled, no price to be paid, no wearing years of probation to be passed, before a sinner can be accepted with God. Let him only believe on Christ, and he is at once forgiven. Salvation is close to the chief of sinners. Let him only repent and believe, and this day it is his own. By Christ all that believe are at once justified from all things. Let us leave the whole passage with one grave and heart-searching thought. If faith in Christ brings with it present and immediate privileges, to remain unbelieving is to be in a state of tremendous peril. If heaven is very near to the believer, hell must be very near to the unbeliever. The greater the mercy that the Lord Jesus offers, the greater will be the guilt of those who neglect and reject it. He that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012), 3:169173. Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. 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Lords Day 41, 2009

Sunday··2009·10·11
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. PETITIONARY HYMNS POEM XIX. After being surprised into Sin. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Ah! Give me, Lord, myself to see, Against myself to watch and pray, How weak am I, when left by thee, How frail, how apt to fall away! If but a moment thou withdraw, That moment sees me break thy law. Jesus, the sinners only trust,    Let me now feel thy grace infusd! Ah! raise a captive from the dust,    Nor break a reed already bruisd! Visit me, Lord, in peace again, Nor let me seek thy face in vain. O gracious Lord, now let me find    Peace and salvation in thy name; Be thou the eye-sight of the blind,    The staff and ancles of the lame; My lifter up wheneer I fall, My strength, my portion, and my all. Let thy meek mind descend on me,    Thy Holy Spirit from above: Assist me, Lord, to follow thee,    Drawn by th endearing cords of love Made perfect by thy cleansing blood, Completely savd and born of God. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). The Gospel According to John Christ Heals the Paralytic Man 5 After these things there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 2 Now there is in Jerusalem by the sheep gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew Bethesda, having five porticoes. 3 In these lay a multitude of those who were sick, blind, lame, and withered, [waiting for the moving of the waters; 4 for an angel of the Lord went down at certain seasons into the pool and stirred up the water; whoever then first, after the stirring up of the water, stepped in was made well from whatever disease with which he was afflicted.]* 5 A man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. 6 When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he had already been a long time in that condition, He said to him, Do you wish to get well? 7 The sick man answered Him, Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but while I am coming, another steps down before me. 8 Jesus said to him, Get up, pick up your pallet and walk. 9 Immediately the man became well, and picked up his pallet and began to walk. Christ Heals on the Sabbath    Now it was the Sabbath on that day. 10 So the Jews were saying to the man who was cured, It is the Sabbath, and it is not permissible for you to carry your pallet. 11 But he answered them, He who made me well was the one who said to me, Pick up your pallet and walk. 12 They asked him, Who is the man who said to you, Pick up your pallet and walk? 13 But the man who was healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had slipped away while there was a crowd in that place. 14 Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, Behold, you have become well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse happens to you. 15 The man went away, and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well. We have in this passage one of the few miracles of Christ, which St. John records. Like every other miracle in this Gospel, it is described with great minuteness and particularity. And like more than one other miracle it leads on to a discourse full of singularly deep instruction. We are taught, for one thing, in this passage, what misery sin has brought into the world. We read of a man who had been ill for no less than thirty-eight years! For eight-and-thirty weary summers and winters he had endured pain and infirmity. He had seen others healed at the waters of Bethesda, and going to their homes rejoicing. But for him there had been no healing. Friendless, helpless, and hopeless, he lay near the wonder-working waters, but derived no benefit from them. Year after year passed away, and left him still uncured. No relief or change for the better seemed likely to come, except from the grave. When we read of cases of sickness like this, we should remember how deeply we ought to hate sin! Sin was the original root, and cause, and fountain of every disease in the world. God did not create man to be full of aches, and pains, and infirmities. These things are the fruits of the Fall. There would have been no sickness, if there had been no sin. No greater proof can be shown of mans inbred unbelief, than his carelessness about sin. Fools, says the wise man, make a mock at sin. (Pro. xiv. 9.) Thousands delight in things which are explicitly evil, and run greedily after that which is downright poison. They love that which God abhors, and dislike that which God loves. They are like the madman, who loves his enemies and hates his friends. Their eyes are blinded. Surely if men would only look at hospitals and infirmaries, and think what havoc sin has made on this earth, they would never take pleasure in sin as they do. Well may we be told to pray for the coming of Gods kingdom! Well may we be told to long for the second advent of Jesus Christ! Then, and not until then, shall there be no more curse on the earth, no more suffering, no more sorrow, and no more sin. Tears shall be wiped from the faces of all who love Christs appearing, when their Master returns. Weakness and infirmity shall all pass away. Hope deferred shall no longer make hearts sick. There will be no chronic invalids and incurable cases, when Christ has renewed this earth. We are taught, for another thing, in this passage, how great is the mercy and compassion of Christ. He saw the poor sufferer lying in the crowd. Neglected, overlooked, and forgotten in the great multitude, he was observed by the all-seeing eye of Christ. He knew full well, by His Divine knowledge, how long he had been in that case, and pitied him. He spoke to him unexpectedly, with words of gracious sympathy. He healed him by miraculous power, at once and without tedious delay, and sent him home rejoicing. This is just one among many examples of our Lord Jesus Christs kindness and compassion. He is full of undeserved, unexpected, abounding love towards man. He delighteth in mercy. (Micah vii. 18.) He is far more ready to save than man is to be saved, far more willing to do good than man is to receive it. No one ever need be afraid of beginning the life of a true Christian, if he feels disposed to begin. Let him not hang back and delay, under the vain idea that Christ is not willing to receive him. Let him come boldly, and trust confidently. He who healed the cripple at Bethesda is still the same. We are taught, lastly, the lesson that recovery from sickness ought to impress upon us. That lesson is contained in the solemn words which our Saviour addressed to the man He had cured: Sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee. Every sickness and sorrow is the voice of God speaking to us. Each has its peculiar message. Happy are they who have an eye to see Gods hand, and an ear to hear His voice, in all that happens to them. Nothing in this world happens by chance. And as it is with sickness, so it is with recovery. Renewed health should send us back to our post in the world with a deeper hatred of sin, a more thorough watchfulness over our own ways, and a more constant purpose of mind to live for God. Far too often the excitement and novelty of returning health tempt us to forget the vows and intentions of the sick-room. There are spiritual dangers attending a recovery! Well would it be for us all after illness to grave these words on our hearts, Let me sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto me. Let us leave the passage with grateful hearts, and bless God that we have such a Gospel and such a Saviour as the Bible reveals.Are we ever sick and ill? Let us remember that Christ sees, and knows, and can heal as He thinks fit.Are we ever in trouble? Let us hear in our trouble the voice of God, and learn to hate sin more. J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012), 3:265268. Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs"); *See Bill Mounce, Where Did v 4 Go in John 5?

Lords Day 47, 2009

Sunday··2009·11·22
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XX. Christ the Light of his People. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) I Lift my heart and eyes to thee, Jesus, thou unextinguished light: My lantern, guide, and leader be, My cloud by day, my fire by night. Glory of Israel, shine within,    Unshadowd, uneclipsd appear; O let thy beams dispel my sin,    Direct me by a friendly star.    The world a maze and labrinth is, Be thou my thread and faithful clue;    Thy kingdom and thy righteousness The only objects I pursue.     Light of the Gentiles, thee I hail!    Essential light, thyself impart! Spirit of light, his face reveal;    And set thy signet on my heart. Thy office is to enlighten man,    And point him to the heavenly prize; The hidden things of God t explain,    And chase the darkness from our eyes.    Shew me I have the better part, The treasure hid with Christ in God;    Give me a perfect peace of heart, And pardon through my Saviours blood. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). John 6:1521Christ Walks on the Water Mt 14:2223; Mk6:4552 So Jesus, perceiving that they were intending to come and take Him by force to make Him king, withdrew again to the mountain by Himself alone.    16 Now when evening came, His disciples went down to the sea, 17 and after getting into a boat, they started to cross the sea to Capernaum. It had already become dark, and Jesus had not yet come to them. 18 The sea began to be stirred up because a strong wind was blowing. 19 Then, when they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus walking on the sea and drawing near to the boat; and they were frightened. 20 But He said to them, It is I; do not be afraid. 21 So they were willing to receive Him into the boat, and immediately the boat was at the land to which they were going. We should notice, in these verses, our Lord Jesus Christs humility. We are told that, after feeding the multitude, He perceived that they would come and take him by force to make him a king. At once He departed, and left them. He wanted no such honours as these. He had come, not to be ministered unto, but to minister and to give his life a ransom for many. (Matt. xx. 28.) We see the same spirit and frame of mind all through our Lords earthly ministry. From His cradle to His grave He was clothed with humility. (1 Pet. v. 5.) He was born of a poor woman, and spent the first thirty years of His life in a carpenters house at Nazareth. He was followed by poor companions,many of them no better than fishermen. He was poor in his manner of living: The foxes had holes, and the birds of the air their nests,but the Son of man had not where to lay his head (Matt. viii. 20.) When He went on the Sea of Galilee, it was in a borrowed boat. When He rode into Jerusalem, it was on a borrowed ass. When He was buried, it was in a borrowed tomb. Though he was rich, yet for our sakes he became poor. (2 Cor. viii. 9.) The example is one which ought to be far more remembered than it is. How common are pride, and ambition, and high-mindedness! How rare are humility and lowly-mindedness! How few ever refuse greatness when offered to them! How many are continually seeking great things for themselves, and forgetting the injunctionSeek them not! (Jer. xlv. 5.) Surely it was not for nothing that our Lord, after washing the disciples feet, said,I have given you an example that ye should do as I have done. (John xiii. 15.) There is little, it may be feared, of that feet-washing spirit among Christians. But whether men will hear or forbear, humility is the queen of the graces. Tell me, it has been said, how much humility a man has, and I will tell you how much religion he has. Humility is the first step toward heaven, and the true way to honour. He that humbleth himself shall be exalted. (Luke xviii. 14.) We should notice, secondly, in these verses, the trials through which Christs disciples had to pass. We are told that they were sent over the lake by themselves, while their Master tarried behind. And then we see them alone in a dark night, tossed about by a great wind on stormy waters, and, worst of all, Christ not with them. It was a strange transition. From witnessing a mighty miracle, and helping it instrumentally, amid an admiring crowd, to solitude, darkness, winds, waves, storm, anxiety, and danger, the change was very great! But Christ knew it, and Christ appointed it, and it was working for their good. Trial, we must distinctly understand, is part of the diet which all true Christians must expect. It is one of the means by which their grace is proved, and by which they find out what there is in themselves. Winter as well as summer,cold as well as heat,clouds as well as sunshine,are all necessary to bring the fruit of the Spirit to ripeness and maturity. We do not naturally like this. We would rather cross the lake with calm weather and favourable winds, with Christ always by our side, and the sun shining down on our faces. But it may not be. It is not in this way that Gods children are made partakers of His holiness. (Heb. xii. 10.) Abraham, and Jacob, and Moses, and David, and Job were all men of many trials. Let us be content to walk in their footsteps, and to drink of their cup. In our darkest hours we may seem to be left,but we are never really alone. Let us notice, in the last place, our Lord Jesus Christs power over the waves of the sea. He came to His disciples as they were rowing on the stormy lake, walking on the waters. He walked on them as easily as we walk on dry land. They bore Him as firmly as the pavement of the Temple, or the hills around Nazareth. That which is contrary to all natural reason was perfectly possible to Christ. The Lord Jesus, we must remember, is not only the Lord, but the Maker of all creation. All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made. (John i. 3.) It was just as easy for Him to walk on the sea as to form the sea at the beginning,just as easy to suspend the common laws of nature, as they are called, as to impose those laws at the first. Learned men talk solemn nonsense sometimes about the eternal fixity of the laws of nature, as if they were above God Himself, and could never be suspended. It is well to be reminded sometimes by such miracles as that before us, that these so-called laws of nature are neither immutable nor eternal. They had a beginning, and will one day have an end. Let all true Christians take comfort in the thought that their Saviour is Lord of waves and winds, of storms and tempests, and can come to them in the darkest hour, walking upon the sea. There are waves of trouble far heavier than any on the Lake of Galilee. There are days of darkness which test the faith of the holiest Christian. But let us never despair if Christ is our Friend. He can come to our aid in an hour when we do not think, and in ways that we did not expect. And when He comes, all will be calm. J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012), 3:334337. Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 1, 2010

Sunday··2010·01·03
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXI. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Chaind to the world, to sin tyd down, In darkness still I lie; Lord, break my bonds, Lord give me wings, And teach me how to fly. Instruct my feeble hands to war,    In me thy strength reveal, To put my evry lust to death,    And fight thy battles well. Rend evry veil that shades thy face,    Put on thine helmet, Lord; My sin shall fall, my guilt expire,    Beneath thy conquring sword. Thou art the mighty God of hosts,    Whose counsels never fail; Be thou my glorious chief, and then    I cannot but prevail. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). John 6:6065Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this said, This is a difficult statement; who can listen to it? 61 But Jesus, conscious that His disciples grumbled at this, said to them, Does this cause you to stumble? 62 What then if you see the Son of Man ascending to where He was before? 63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life. 64 But there are some of you who do not believe. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him. 65 And He was saying, For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father. We learn from these verses that some of Christs sayings seem hard to flesh and blood. We are told that many who had followed our Lord for a season, were offended when He spoke of eating his flesh and drinking his blood. They murmured and said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it? Murmurs and complaints of this kind are very common. It must never surprise us to hear them. They have been, they are, they will be as long as the world stands. To some Christs sayings appear hard to understand. To others, as in the present case, they appear hard to believe, and harder still to obey. It is just one of the many ways in which the natural corruption of man shows itself. So long as the heart is naturally proud, worldly, unbelieving, and fond of self-indulgence, if not of sin, so long there will never be lacking people who will say of Christian doctrines and precepts, These are hard sayings; who can hear them? Humility is the frame of mind which we should labour and pray for, if we would not be offended by scriptural teaching. If we find any of Christs sayings hard to understand, we should humbly remember our present ignorance, and believe that we shall know more by and bye. If we find any of His sayings difficult to obey, we should humbly recollect that He will never require of us impossibilities, and that what He bids us do, He will give us grace to perform. We learn, secondly, from these verses, that we must beware of putting a carnal meaning on spiritual words. We read that our Lord said to the murmuring Jews who stumbled at the idea of eating His flesh and drinking His blood, It is the Spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life. It is useless to deny that this verse is full of difficulties. It contains expressions hard to be understood. It is far more easy to have a general impression of the meaning of the whole sentence, than to explain it word by word. Some things nevertheless we can see clearly and grasp firmly. Let us consider what they are. Our Lord says, It is the Spirit that quickeneth. By this He means that it is the Holy Ghost who is the special author of spiritual life in mans soul. By His agency it is first imparted, and afterwards sustained and kept up. If the Jews thought He meant that man could have spiritual life by bodily eating or drinking, they were greatly mistaken. Our Lord says, The flesh profiteth nothing. By this He means that neither His flesh nor any other flesh, literally eaten, can do good to the soul. Spiritual benefit is not to be had through the mouth, but through the heart. The soul is not a material thing, and cannot therefore be nourished by material food. Our Lord says, the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life. By this He signifies that His words and teachings, applied to the heart by the Holy Spirit, are the true means of producing spiritual influence and conveying spiritual life. By words thoughts are begotten and aroused. By words mind and conscience are stirred. And Christs words especially are spirit-stirring and life-giving. The principle contained in this verse, however faintly we may grasp its full meaning, deserves peculiar attention in these times. There is a tendency in many minds to attach an excessive importance to the outward and visible or doing part of religion. They seem to think that the sum and substance of Christianity consists in Baptism and the Supper of the Lord, in public ceremonies and forms, in appeals to the eye and ear and bodily excitement. Surely they forget that it is the Spirit that quickeneth, and that the flesh profiteth nothing. It is not so much by noisy public demonstrations, as by the still quiet work of the Holy Spirit on hearts that Gods cause prospers. It is Christs words entering into consciences, which are spirit and life. We learn, lastly, from these verses, that Christ has a perfect knowledge of the hearts of men. We read that He knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him. Sentences like this are found so frequently in the Gospels that we are apt to underrate their importance. Yet there are few truths which we shall find it so good for our souls to remember as that which is contained in the sentence before us. The Saviour with whom we have to do is one who knows all things! What light this throws on the marvelous patience of the Lord Jesus in the days of His earthly ministry! He knew the sorrow and humiliation before Him, and the manner of His death. He knew the unbelief and treachery of some who professed to be His familiar friends. But for the joy that was set before Him he endured it all. (Heb. xii. 2.) What light this throws on the folly of hypocrisy and false profession in religion! Let those who are guilty of it recollect that they cannot deceive Christ. He sees them, knows them, and will expose them at the last day, except they repent. Whatever we are as Christians, and however weak, let us be real, true, and sincere. Finally, what light this throws on the daily pilgrimage of all true Christians! Let them take comfort in the thought that their Master knows them. However much unknown and misunderstood by the world, their Master knows their hearts, and will comfort them at the last day. Happy is he who, in spite of many infirmities, can say with Peter: Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. (John xxi. 17.) J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. 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Lords Day 7, 2010

Sunday··2010·02·14
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXII. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) O when will thou my Saviour be, O when shall I be clean, The true, eternal sabbath see, A perfect rest from sin! Jesus, the sinners rest thou art, From guilt, and fear, and pain; While thou art absent from my heart, I look for rest in vain. The consolations of thy word,    My soul hath long upheld, The faithful promise of the Lord,    Shall surely be fulfilld; I look to my incarnate God,    Till he his work begin; And wait till his redeeming blood    Shall cleanse me from all sin. His great salvation I shall know,    And perfect liberty; Onward to sin he cannot go,    Whoeer abides in thee; Added to the Redeemers fold    I shall in him rejoice: I all his glory shall behold,    And hear my shepherds voice. O that I now the voice may hear,    That speaks my sins forgivn; His word is past, to give me here    The inward plebdge of heavn: His blood shall over all prevail,    And sanctify the unclean; The grace that saves from future hell,    Shall save from present sin. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). John 7:4052Israel Is Divided over Christ Some of the people therefore, when they heard these words, were saying, This certainly is the Prophet. 41 Others were saying, This is the Christ. Still others were saying, Surely the Christ is not going to come from Galilee, is He? 42 Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the descendants of David, and from Bethlehem, the village where David was? 43 So a division occurred in the crowd because of Him. 44 Some of them wanted to seize Him, but no one laid hands on Him. The Sanhedrin Is Confused over Christ     45 The officers then came to the chief priests and Pharisees, and they said to them, Why did you not bring Him? 46 The officers answered, Never has a man spoken the way this man speaks. 47 The Pharisees then answered them, You have not also been led astray, have you? 48 No one of the rulers or Pharisees has believed in Him, has he? 49 But this crowd which does not know the Law is accursed. 50 Nicodemus (he who came to Him before, being one of them) said to them, 51 Our Law does not judge a man unless it first hears from him and knows what he is doing, does it? 52 They answered him, You are not also from Galilee, are you? Search, and see that no prophet arises out of Galilee. These verses show us, for one thing, how useless is knowledge in religion, if it is not accompanied by grace in the heart. We are told that some of our Lords hearers knew clearly where Christ was to be born. They referred to Scripture, like men familiar with its contents. Hath not the Scripture said that Christ cometh of the seed of David, and out of the town of Bethlehem, where David was? And yet the eyes of their understanding were not enlightened. Their own Messiah stood before them, and they neither received, nor believed, nor obeyed Him. A certain degree of religious knowledge, beyond doubt, is of vast importance. Ignorance is certainly not the mother of true devotion, and helps nobody toward heaven. An unknown God can never be the object of a reasonable worship. Happy indeed would it be for Christians if they all knew the Scriptures as well as the Jews seem to have done, when our Lord was on earth! But while we value religious knowledge, we must take care that we do not overvalue it. We must not think it enough to know the facts and doctrines of our faith, unless our hearts and lives are thoroughly influenced by what we know. The very devils know the creed intellectually, and believe and tremble, but remain devils still. (James ii. 19.) It is quite possible to be familiar with the letter of Scripture, and to be able to quote texts appropriately, and reason about the theory of Christianity, and yet to remain dead in trespasses and sins. Like many of the generation to which our Lord preached, we may know the Bible well, and yet remain faithless and unconverted. Heart-knowledge, we must always remember, is the one thing needful. It is something which schools and universities cannot confer. It is the gift of God. To find out the plague of our own hearts and hate sin,to become familiar with the throne of grace and the fountain of Christs blood,to sit daily at the feet of Jesus, and humbly learn of Him,this is the highest degree of knowledge to which mortal man can attain. Let any one thank God who knows anything of these things. He may be ignorant of Greek, Latin, Hebrew, and mathematics, but he shall be saved. These verses show us, for another thing, how eminent must have been our Lords gifts, as a public Teacher of religion. We are told that even the officers of the chief priests, who were sent to take Him, were struck and amazed. They were, of course, not likely to be prejudiced in His favour. Yet even they reported,Never man spake like this Man. Of the manner of our Lords public speaking, we can of necessity form little idea. Action, and voice, and delivery are things that must be seen and heard to be appreciated. That our Lords manner was peculiarly solemn, arresting, and impressive, we need not doubt. It was probably something very unlike what the Jewish officers were accustomed to hear. There is much in what is said in another place: He taught them as One having authority, and not as the Scribes. (Matt. vii. 29.) Of the matter of our Lords public speaking, we may form some conception from the discourses which are recorded in the four Gospels. The leading features of these discourses are plain and unmistakable. The world has never seen anything like them, since the gift of speech was given to man. They often contain deep truths, which we have no line to fathom. But they often contain simple things, which even a child can understand. They are bold and outspoken in denouncing national and ecclesiastical sins, and yet they are wise and discreet in never giving needless offence. They are faithful and direct in their warnings, and yet loving and tender, in their invitations. For a combination of power and simplicity, of courage and prudence, of faithfulness and tenderness, we may well say, Never man spake like this Man! It would be well for the Church of Christ if ministers and teachers of religion would strive more to speak after their Lords pattern. Let them remember that elegant bombastic language, and a sensational, theatrical style of address, are utterly unlike their Master. Let them realize, that an eloquent simplicity is the highest attainment of public speaking. Of this their Master left them a glorious example. Surely they need never be ashamed of walking in His steps. These verses show us, lastly, how slowly and gradually the work of grace goes on in some hearts. We are told that Nicodemus stood up in the council of our Lords enemies, and mildly pleaded that He deserved fair dealing. Doth our law judge any man, he asked, before it hear him, and know what he doeth? This very Nicodemus, we must remember, is the man who, eighteen months before, had come to our Lord by night as an ignorant inquirer. He evidently knew little then, and dared not come to Christ in open day. But now, after eighteen months, he has got on so far that he dares to say something on our Lords side. It was but little that he said, no doubt, but it was better than nothing at all. And a day was yet to come, when he would go further still. He was to help Joseph of Arimathaea in doing honour to our Lords dead body, when even His chosen Apostles had forsaken Him and fled. The case of Nicodemus is full of useful instruction. It teaches us, that there are diversities in the operation of the Holy Ghost. All are undoubtedly led to the same Saviour, but all are not led precisely in the same way. It teaches us, that the work of the Spirit does not always go forward with the same speed in the hearts of men. In some cases it may go forward very slowly indeed, and yet may be real and true. We shall do well to remember these things, in forming our opinion of other Christians. We are often ready to condemn some as graceless, because their experience does not exactly tally with our own, or to set them down as not in the narrow way at all, because they cannot run as fast as ourselves. We must beware of hasty judgments. It is not always the fastest runner that wins the race. It is not always those who begin suddenly in religion, and profess themselves rejoicing Christians, who continue steadfast to the end. Slow work is sometimes the surest and most enduring. Nicodemus stood firm, when Judas Iscariot fell away and went to his own place. No doubt it would be a pleasant thing, if everybody who was converted came out boldly, took up the cross, and confessed Christ in the day of his conversion. But it is not always given to Gods children to do so. Have we any grace in our hearts at all? This, after all, is the grand question that concerns us. It may be small,but have we any? It may grow slowly, as in the case of Nicodemus,but does it grow at all? Better a little grace than none! Better move slowly than stand still in sin and the world! J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 13, 2010

Sunday··2010·03·28
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXIII. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Jesus, thy light impart And lead me in thy path; I have an unbelieving heart, But thou canst give me faith. The work in me fulfill,    Which mercy hath begun; I have a proud rebellious will,    But thou canst melt it down. Sin on my heart is wrote,    I am throughout impure; But my disease, oh Lord, is not    Too hard for thee to cure. The darkness of my mind,    Lies open to thy sight; Jesus, I am by nature blind,    But thou canst give me light. Send down thy Holy Ghost,    To cleanse and fill with peace; For O, my inward parts thou knowst    Are very wickedness. Thy love all power hath,    Its power in me exert; And give me living active faith,    That purifies the heart. Unrivald reign within,    My only sovereign be, O crucify the man of sin,    And form thyself in me. Thy bloods renewing might,    Can make the foulest clean; Can wash the Ethiopian white,       And change the leopards skin. That, Lord, can bring me nigh,    And wipe my sins away; Can lift my abject soul on high,    And call me into day. Fulfill thy gracious word,    And shew my guilt forgivn; Bid me embrace my dying Lord,    And mount with him to Heavn. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). The Gospel According to John Christ Heals the Blind Man 9 As He passed by, He saw a man blind from birth. 2 And His disciples asked Him, Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he would be born blind? 3 Jesus answered, It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him. 4 We must work the works of Him who sent Me as long as it is day; night is coming when no one can work. 5 While I am in the world, I am the Light of the world. 6 When He had said this, He spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and applied the clay to his eyes, 7 and said to him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam (which is translated, Sent) So he went away and washed, and came back seeing. 8 Therefore the neighbors, and those who previously saw him as a beggar, were saying, Is not this the one who used to sit and beg? 9 Others were saying, This is he, still others were saying, No, but he is like him. He kept saying, I am the one. 10 So they were saying to him, How then were your eyes opened? 11 He answered, The man who is called Jesus made clay, and anointed my eyes, and said to me, Go to Siloam and wash; so I went away and washed, and I received sight. 12 They said to him, Where is He? He said, I do not know. The chapter we now begin records one of the few great works of Christ which St. John has reported. It tell us how our Lord gave sight to a man who had been blind from his birth. Here, as elsewhere in this Gospel, we find the circumstances of the miracle narrated with peculiar fullness, minuteness, and particularity. Here too, as elsewhere, we find the narrative rich in spiritual lessons. We should observe, first, in this passage, how much sorrow sin has brought into the world. A sorrowful case is brought before us. We are told of a man who was blind from his birth. A more serious affliction can hardly be conceived. Of all the bodily crosses that can be laid on man, without taking away life, none perhaps is greater than the loss of sight. It cuts us off from some of the greatest enjoyments of life. It shuts us up within a narrow world of our own. It makes us painfully helpless and dependent on others. In fact, until men lose their eyesight, they never fully realize its value. Now blindness, like every other bodily infirmity, is one of the fruits of sin. If Adam had never fallen, we cannot doubt that people would never have been blind, or deaf, or mdumb. The many ills that flesh is heir to, the countless pains, and diseases, and physical defects to which we are all liable, came in when the curse came upon the earth. By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin. (Rom. v. 12.) Let us learn to hate sin with a godly hatred, as the root of more than half of our cares and sorrows. Let us fight against it, mortify it, crucify it, and abhor it both in ourselves and others. There cannot be a clearer proof that man is a fallen creature than the fact that he can love sin and take pleasure in it. We should observe, secondly, in this passage, what a solemn lesson Christ gives us about the use of opportunities. He says to the disciples who asked Him about the blind man, I must work while it is called to-day: the night cometh, when no man can work. That saying was eminently true when applied to our Lord Himself. He knew well that his own earthly ministry would only last three years altogether, and knowing this He diligently redeemed the time. He let slip no opportunity of doing works of mercy, and attending to His Fathers business. Morning, noon, and night He was always carrying on the work which the Father gave Him to do. It was His food and drink to do His Fathers will, and to finish His work. His whole life breathed one sentiment,I must work: the night cometh, when no man can work. The saying is one which should be remembered by all professing Christians. The life that we now live in the flesh is our day. Let us take care that we use it well, for the glory of God and the good of our souls. Let us work out our salvation with fear and trembling, while it is called to-day. There is no work nor labour in the grave, toward which we are all fast hastening. Let us pray, and read, and keep our Sabbaths holy, and hear Gods Word, and do good in our generation, like men who never forget that the night is at hand. Our time is very short. Our daylight will soon be gone. Opportunities once lost can never be retrieved. A second lease of life is granted to no man. Then let us resist procrastination as we would resist the devil. Whatever our hand findeth to do, let us do it with our might. The night cometh, when no man can work. We should observe, thirdly, in this passage, what different means Christ used in working miracles on different occasions. In healing the blind man He might, if He had thought fit, have merely touched Him with his finger, or given command with His tongue. But He did not rest content with doing so. We are told that He spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. In all these means of course there was no inherent healing virtue. But for wise reasons the Lord was pleased to use them. We need not doubt that in this, as in every other action of our Lord, there is an instructive lesson. It teaches us, we may well believe, that the Lord of heaven and earth will not be tied down to the use of any one means or instrumentality. In conferring blessings on man, He will work in His own way, and will allow no one to prescribe to Him. Above all, it should teach those who have received anything at Christs hands, to be careful how they measure other mens experience by their own. Have we been healed by Christ, and made to see and live? Let us thank God for it, and be humbled. But let us beware of saying that no other man has been healed, except he has been brought to spiritual life in precisely the same manner. The great question is,Are the eyes of our understanding opened? Do we see? Have we spiritual life?Enough for us if the cure is effected and health restored. If it is, we must leave it to the great Physician to choose the instrument, the means, and the manner,the clay, the touch, or the command. We should observe, lastly, in this passage, the almighty power that Christ holds in His hands. We see Him doing that which in itself was impossible. Without medicines He cures an incurable case. He actually gives eyesight to one who was born blind. Such a miracle as this is meant to teach an old truth, which we can never know too well. It shows us that Jesus the Saviour of sinners has all power in heaven and earth. Such mighty works could never have been done by one that was merely man. In the cure of this blind man we see nothing less than the finger of God. Such a miracle, above all, is meant to make us hopeful about our own souls and the souls of others. Why should we despair of salvation while we have such a Saviour? Where is the spiritual disease that He cannot take away? He can open the eyes of the most sinful and ignorant, and make them see things they never saw before. He can send light into the darkest heart, and cause blindness and prejudice to pass away. Surely, if we are not saved, the fault will be all our own. There lives at Gods right hand One who can heal us if we apply to Him. Let us take heed lest those solemn words are found true of us,Light has come into the world: but men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. Ye will not come to Me that ye might have life. (John iii. 19; 5:40) J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 21, 2010

Sunday··2010·05·23
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXIV. The Christians WishAugustus Toplady (1740–1778) Emptied of earth I fain would be, Of sin, myself, and all but Thee; Only reserved for Christ that died, Surrenderd to the crucified. Sequesterd from the noise and strife, The lust, the pomp, the pride of life; For heaven alone my heart prepare, And have my conversation there. O may I the Redeemer trace, Invested with his righteousness! This path, untird, I will pursue, Nor slack while Jesus is in view. Nothing, save Jesus, would I know; My friend and my companion Thou! Lord, seize my heart, assert Thy right, And put all other loves to flight. My idols tread beneath thy feet, And enterd once, maintain thy seat; Let Dagon fall before thy face, The ark remaining in its place. O lend me now a two edgd sword, To slay my sins before the Lord; With Abrahams knife, before thine eyes, Each favorite Isaac sacrifice. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). The Gospel According to JohnChrist Raises Lazarus11 Now a certain man was sick, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. 2 It was the Mary who anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped His feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick. 3 So the sisters sent word to Him, saying, Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick. 4 But when Jesus heard this, He said, This sickness is not to end in death, but for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified by it. 5 Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. 6 So when He heard that he was sick, He then stayed two days longer in the place where He was. The chapter we have now begun is one of the most remarkable in the New Testament. For grandeur and simplicity, for pathos and solemnity, nothing was ever written like it. It describes a miracle which is not recorded in the other Gospels,the raising of Lazarus from the dead. Nowhere shall we find such convincing proofs of our Lords Divine power. As God, He makes the grave itself yield up its tenants.Nowhere shall we find such striking illustrations of our Lords ability to sympathize with His people. As man, He can be touched with the feelings of our infirmities.Such a miracle well became the end of such a ministry. It was fit and right that the victory of Bethany should closely precede the crucifixion at Calvary. These verses teach us that true Christians may be sick and ill as well as others. We read that Lazarus of Bethany was one whom Jesus loved, and a brother of two well-known holy women. Yet Lazarus was sick, even unto death! The Lord Jesus, who had power over all diseases, could no doubt have prevented this illness, if He had thought fit. But He did not do so. He allowed Lazarus to be sick, and in pain, and weary, and to languish and suffer like any other man. The lesson is one which ought to be deeply graven in our memories. Living in a world full of disease and death, we are sure to need it some day. Sickness, in the very nature of things, can never be anything but trying to flesh and blood. Our bodies and souls are strangely linked together, and that which vexes and weakens the body can hardly fail to vex the mind and soul. But sickness, we must always remember, is no sign that God is displeased with us; no, more, it is generally sent for the good of our souls. It tends to draw our affections away from this world, and to direct them to things above. It sends us to our Bibles, and teaches us to pray better. It helps to prove our faith and patience, and shows us the real value of our hope in Christ. It reminds us betimes that we are not to live always, and tunes and trains our hearts for our great change. Then let us be patient and cheerful when we are laid aside by illness. Let us believe that the Lord Jesus loves us when we are sick no less than when we are well. These verses teach us, secondly, that Jesus Christ is the Christians best Friend in the time of need. We read that when Lazarus was sick, his sisters at once sent to Jesus, and laid the matter before Him. Beautiful, touching, and simple was the message they sent. They did not ask Him to come at once, or to work a miracle, and command the disease to depart. They only said, Lord, he whom Thou lovest is sick, and left the matter there, in the full belief that He would do what was best. Here was the true faith and humility of saints! Here was gracious submission of will! The servants of Christ, in every age and climate, will do well to follow this excellent example. No doubt when those whom we love are sick, we are to use diligently every reasonable means for their recovery. We must spare no pains to obtain the best medical advice. We must assist nature in every possible manner to fight a good fight against its enemy. But in all our doing, we must never forget that the best and ablest and wisest Helper is in heaven, at Gods right hand. Like afflicted Job our first action must be to fall on our knees and worship. Like Hezekiah, we must spread our matters before the Lord. Like the holy sisters at Bethany, we must send up a prayer to Christ. Let us not forget, in the hurry and excitement of our feelings, that none can help like Him, and that He is merciful, loving, and gracious. These verses teach us, thirdly, that Christ loves all who are true Christians. We read that Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. The characters of these three good people seem to have been somewhat different. Of Martha, we are told in a certain place, that she was anxious and troubled about many things, while Mary sat at Jesus feet, and heard His word. Of Lazarus we are told nothing distinctive at all. Yet all these were loved by the Lord Jesus. They all belonged to His family, and He loved them all. We must carefully bear this in mind in forming our estimate of Christians. We must never forget that there are varieties in character, and that the grace of God does not cast all believers into one and the same mold. Admitting fully that the foundations of Christian character are always the same, and that all Gods children repent, believe, are holy, prayerful, and Scripture-loving, we must make allowances for wide varieties in their temperaments and habits of mind. We must not undervalue others because they are not exactly like ourselves. The flowers in a garden may differ widely, and yet the gardener feels interest in all. The children of a family may be curiously unlike one another, and yet the parents care for all. It is just so with the Church of Christ. There are degrees of grace, and varieties of grace; but the least, the weakest, the feeblest disciples are all loved by the Lord Jesus. Then let no believers heart fail because of his infirmities; and, above all, let no believer dare to despise and undervalue a brother. These verses teach us, lastly, that Christ knows best at what time to do anything for His people. We read that when He had heard that Lazarus was sick, He abode two days still in the same place where He was. In fact, He purposely delayed His journey, and did not come to Bethany until Lazarus had been four days in the grave. No doubt He knew well what was going on; but He never moved until the time came which He saw was best. For the sake of the Church and the world, for the good of friends and enemies, He kept away. The children of God must constantly school their minds to learn the great lesson now before us. Nothing so helps us to bear patiently the trials of life as an abiding conviction of the perfect wisdom by which everything around us is managed. Let us try to believe not only that all that happens to us is well done, but that it is done in the best manner, by the right instrument, and at the right time. We are all naturally impatient in the day of trial. We are apt to say, like Moses, when beloved ones are sick, Heal her now, Lord, we beseech thee. (Num. xii. 13.) We forget that Christ is too wise a Physician to make any mistakes. It is the duty of faith to say, My times are in Thy hand. Do with me as Thou wilt, how Thou wilt, what Thou wilt, and when Thou wilt. Not my will, but Thine be done. The highest degree of faith is to be able to wait, sit still, and not complain. Let us turn from the passage with a settled determination to trust Christ entirely with all the concerns of this world, both public and private. Let us believe that He by whom all things were made at first is He who is managing all with perfect wisdom. The affairs of kingdoms, families, and private individuals are all alike overruled by Him. He chooses all the portions of His people. When we are sick, it is because He knows it to be for our good; when He delays coming to help us, it is for some wise reason. The hand that was nailed to the cross is too wise and loving to smite without a needs-be, or to keep us waiting for relief without a cause. J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 34, 2010

Sunday··2010·08·22
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.’ Petitionary Hymns Poem XXV. [Before Meat.] 1 Cor. x. 31. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Lord, we invite thee here, Vouchsafe to be our guest, Jesus, do thou appear The Master of the feast; Thy quick’ning presence let us prove, And banquet on thy hidden love. With manna from on high    Feed thine inheritance, And come and sanctify    Our outward sustenance: With it the inward food be giv’n, The bread of life, the wine of heav’n. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). The Gospel According to John 13 Now before the Feast of the Passover, Jesus knowing that His hour had come that He would depart out of this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end. 2 During supper, the devil having already put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, to betray Him, 3 Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come forth from God and was going back to God, 4 got up from supper, and laid aside His garments; and taking a towel, He girded Himself. 5 Then He poured water into the basin, and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded. The passage we have now read begins one of the most interesting portions of St. John’s Gospel. For five consecutive chapters we find the Evangelist recording matters which are not mentioned by Matthew, Mark, and Luke. We can never be thankful enough that the Holy Ghost has caused them to be written for our learning! In every age the contents of these chapters have been justly regarded as one of the most precious parts of the Bible. They have been the food and drink, the strength and comfort of all true-hearted Christians. Let us ever approach them with peculiar reverence. The place whereon we stand is holy ground. We learn, for one thing, from these verses, what patient and continuing love there is in Christ’s heart towards His people. It is written that “having loved His own which were in the world, He loved them unto the end.’ Knowing perfectly well that they were about to forsake Him shamefully in a very few hours, in full view of their approaching display of weakness and infirmity, our blessed Master did not cease to have loving thoughts of His disciples. He was not weary of them: He loved them to the last. The love of Christ to sinners is the very essence and marrow of the Gospel. That He should love us at all, and care for our souls, —that He should love us before we love Him, or even know anything about Him, —that He should love us so much as to come into the world to save us, take our nature on Him, bear our sins, and die for us on the cross, —all this is wonderful indeed! It is a kind of love to which there is nothing like it, among men. The narrow selfishness of human nature cannot fully comprehend it. It is one of those things which even the angels of God “desire to look into.’ It is a truth which Christian preachers and teachers should proclaim incessantly, and never be weary of proclaiming. But the love of Christ to saints is no less wonderful, in its way, than His love to sinners, though far less considered. That He should bear with all their countless infirmities from grace to glory,—that He should never be tired of their endless inconsistencies and petty provocations, —that He should go on forgiving and forgetting incessantly, and never be provoked to cast them off and give them up, —all this is marvellous indeed! No mother watching over the waywardness of her feeble babe, in the days of its infancy, has her patience so thoroughly tried, as the patience of Christ is tried by Christians. Yet His patience is infinite. His compassions are a well that is never exhausted. His love is “a love that passeth knowledge.’ Let no man be afraid of beginning with Christ, if he desires to be saved. The chief of sinners may come to Him with boldness, and trust Him for pardon with confidence. This loving Saviour is One who delights to “receive sinners.’ (Luke xv. 2.) Let no man be afraid of going on with Christ after he has once come to Him and believed. Let him not fancy that Christ will cast him off because of failures, and dismiss him into his former hopelessness on account of infirmities. Such thoughts are entirely unwarranted by anything in the Scriptures. Jesus will never reject any servant because of feeble service and weak performance. Those whom He receives He always keeps. Those whom He loves at first He loves at last. His promise shall never be broken, and it is for saints as well as sinners: “Him that cometh unto Me I will in no wise cast out.’ (John vi. 37.) We learn, for another thing, from these verses, what deep corruption may sometimes be found in the heart of a great professor of religion. It is written that “the devil put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray Christ.’ This Judas, we must always remember, was one of the twelve Apostles. He had been chosen by Christ Himself, at the same time with Peter, James, John, and their companions. For three years he had walked in Christ’s society, had seen His miracles, had heard His preaching, had experienced many proofs of His loving-kindness. He had even preached himself and wrought miracles in Christ’s name; and when our Lord sent out His disciples two and two, Judas Iscariot no doubt must have been one of some couple that was sent. Yet here we see this very man possessed by the devil, and rushing headlong to destruction. On all the coasts of England there is not such a beacon to warn sailors of danger as Judas Iscariot is to warn Christians. He shows us what length a man may go in religious profession, and yet turn out a rotten hypocrite at last, and prove never to have been converted. He shows us the uselessness of the highest privileges, unless we have a heart to value them and turn them to good account. Privileges alone without grace save nobody, and will only make hell deeper. He shows us the uselessness of mere head-knowledge. To know things with our brains, and be able to talk and preach and speak to others, is no proof that our own feet are in the way of peace. These are terrible lessons: but they are true. Let us never be surprised if we see hypocrisy and false profession among Christians in modern days. There is nothing new in it, nothing peculiar, nothing that did not happen even among Christ’s own immediate followers, and under Christ’s own eyes. Bad money is a strong proof that there is good coin somewhere. Hypocrisy is a strong indirect evidence that there is such a thing as true religion. Above all, let us pray daily that our own Christianity may at any rate be genuine, sincere, real and true. Our faith may be feeble, our hope dim, our knowledge small, our failures frequent, our faults many. But at all events let us be real and true. Let us be able to say with poor, weak, erring Peter, “Thou, Lord, who knowest all things, knowest that I love Thee.’ (John xxi. 17.) —J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 42, 2010

Sunday··2010·10·17
I reioyced, when they sayd to me, We wil go into the house of the Lord. (Psalme 122:1) Petitionary Hymns Poem XXVI. For the Morning. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) My soul, can’st thou no higher rise, To meet thy God, than this? Yet, Lord, accept my sacrifice, Defective as it is. Tune all my organs to thy praise, And psalmist’s muse impart; And with thy penetrating rays, O melt my frozen heart. Give me thyself, the only good, And ever with me stay; Whose faithful mercies are renew’ With each returning day. Ah! guide me with a Father’s eye, Nor from my soul depart; But let the day-star from on high Illuminate my heart. This day preserve me without sin, Protected in thy ways; And hear me while I usher in The welcome dawn with praise. Far as the east from west remove Each earthly vain desire; And raise me on the wings of love, ’Til I can mount no higher. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). John 14:18–20 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19 After a little while the world will no longer see Me, but you will see Me; because I live, you will live also. 20 In that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.” The short passage before us is singularly rich in “precious promises.” Twice our Lord Jesus Christ says, “I will.” Twice He says to believers, “Ye shall.” We learn from this passage, that Christ’s second coming is meant to be the special comfort of believers. He says to His disciples, “I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.” Now what is the “coming” here spoken of? It is only fair to say that this is a disputed point among Christians. Many refer it to our Lord’s coming to His disciples after His resurrection. Many refer it to His invisible coming into the hearts of His people by the grace of the Holy Ghost. Many refer it to His coming by the outpouring of the Holy Ghost on the day of Pentecost. It may well be doubted, however, whether any one of these three views conveys the full meaning of our Lord’s words, “I will come.” The true sense of the expression appears to be the second personal coming of Christ at the end of the world. It is a wide, broad, sweeping promise, intended for all believers, in every age, and not for the Apostles alone:—“I will not stay always in heaven: I will one day come back to you.” It is like the message which the angels brought to the disciples after the ascension:—“This same Jesus shall come in like manner as ye have seen Him go.” (Acts. i. 11.) It is like the last promise which winds up the Book of Revelation:—“Surely I come quickly.” (Rev. xxii. 20.) Just in the same way the parting consolation held out to believers, the night before the crucifixion, is a personal return:—“I will come.” Let us settle it in our minds that all believers are comparatively “orphans,” and children in their minority, until the second advent. Our best things are yet to come. Faith has yet to be exchanged for sight, and hope for certainty. Our peace and joy are at present very imperfect. They are as nothing to what we shall have when Christ returns. For the return let us look and long and pray. Let us place it in the forefront of all our doctrinal system, next to the atoning death and the interceding life of our Lord. The highest style of Christians are the men who look for and love the Lord’s appearing. (2 Tim. iv. 8.) We learn for another thing, that Christ’s life secures the life of His believing people. He says, “Because I live ye shall live also.” There is a mysterious and indissoluble union between Christ and every true Christian. The man that is once joined to Him by faith, is as closely united as a member of the body is united to the head. So long as Christ, his Head, lives, so long he will live. He cannot die unless Christ can be plucked from heaven, and Christ’s life destroyed. But this, since Christ is very God, is totally impossible! “Christ being raised from the dead, dies no more: death hath no more dominion over Him.” (Rom. vi. 9.) That which is divine, in the very nature of things, cannot die. Christ’s life secures the continuance of spiritual life to His people. They shall not fall away. They shall persevere unto the end. The divine nature of which they are partakers, shall not perish. The incorruptible seed within them shall not be destroyed by the devil and the world. Weak as they are in themselves, they are closely knit to an immortal Head, and not one member of His mystical body shall ever perish. Christ’s life secures the resurrection life of His people. Just as He rose again from the grave, because death could not hold Him one moment beyond the appointed time, so shall all His believing members rise again in the day when He calls them from the tomb. The victory that Jesus won when He rolled the stone away, and came forth from the tomb, was a victory not only for Himself, but for His people. If the Head rose, much more shall the members. Truths like these ought to be often pondered by true Christians. The careless world knows little of a believer’s privileges. It sees little but the outside of him. It does not understand the secret of his present strength, and of his strong hope of good things to come. And what is that secret? Invisible union with an invisible Saviour in heaven! Each child of God is invisibly linked to the throne of the Rock of Ages. When that throne can be shaken, and not till then, we may despair. But Christ lives, and we shall live also. We learn, finally, from this passage, that full and perfect knowledge of divine things will never be attained by believers until the second advent. Our Lord says, “At that day,” the day of my coming, “you shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in Me, and I in you.” The best of saints knows but little so long as he is in the body. The fall of our father Adam has corrupted our understandings, as well as our consciences, hearts, and wills. Even after conversion we see through a glass darkly, and on no point do we see so dimly as on the nature of our own union with Christ, and of the union of Christ and the Father. These are matters in which we must be content to believe humbly, and, like little children, to receive on trust the things which we cannot explain. But it is a blessed and cheering thought that when Christ comes again, the remains of ignorance shall be rolled away. Raised from the dead, freed from the darkness of this world, no longer tempted by the devil and tried by the flesh, believers shall see as they have been seen, and know as they have been known. We shall have light enough one day. What we know not now, we shall know hereafter. Let us rest our souls on this comfortable thought, when we see the mournful divisions which rend the Church of Christ. Let us remember that a large portion of them arise from ignorance. We know in part, and therefore misunderstand one another. A day comes when Lutherans shall no longer wrangle with Zwinglians, nor Calvinist with Arminian, nor Churchman with Dissenter. That day is the day of Christ’s second coming. Then and then only will the promise receive its complete fulfillment,—“At that day ye shall know.” —J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Baker Books, 2007) [Westminster (PB) | Amazon (HC)]. Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. 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Lords Day 13, 2011

Sunday··2011·03·27
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXIX. Hab. ii. 14. For the Earth shall be filled, &c. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Bring thy kingdom, Lord, make haste, Bring on the glorious day, From the greatest to the least, When all shall own thy sway: When the convert world with grief, Shall see the error of their ways, Lay aside their unbelief, And yield unto thy grace. In thy gospel-chariot, Lord,    Drive through earths utmost bound; spread the odour of thy word    Through all the nations round: Fill the darkend earth with Light,    Thine own victorious cause advance; Take the heathen as the right    Of thine inheritance. In our Day expose to view,    The standard of the lamb; Bid the Nations flock thereto,    Who never knew thy name: Let them quit the downward road,    Compelld thy saying to receive; Turnd from Satan unto God,    With one consent believe. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). John 19:3842 After these things Joseph of Arimathea, being a disciple of Jesus, but a secret one for fear of the Jews, asked Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus; and Pilate granted permission. So he came and took away His body. 39 Nicodemus, who had first come to Him by night, also came, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pounds weight. 40 So they took the body of Jesus and bound it in linen wrappings with the spices, as is the burial custom of the Jews. 41 Now in the place where He was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb in which no one had yet been laid. 42 Therefore because of the Jewish day of preparation, since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there. There is a peculiar interest attached to these five verses of Scripture. They introduce us to a stranger, of whom we never heard before. They bring in an old friend, whose name is known wherever the Bible is read. They describe the most important funeral that ever took place in this world. From each of these three points of interest we may learn a very profitable lesson. We learn, for one thing, from these verses, that there are some true Christians in the world of whom very little is known. The case of Joseph of Arimathæa teaches this very plainly. Here is a man named among the friends of Christ, whose very name we never find elsewhere in the New Testament, and whose history, both before and after this crisis, is completely withheld from the Church. He comes forward to do honor to Christ, when the Apostles had forsaken Him and fled. He cares for Him and delights to do Him service, even when dead,not because of any miracle which he saw Him do, but out of free and gratuitous love. He does not hesitate to confess himself one of Christs friends, at a time when Jews and Romans alike had condemned Him as a malefactor, and put Him to death. Surely the man who could do such things must have had strong faith! Can we wonder that, wherever the Gospel is preached, throughout the whole world, this pious action of Joseph is told of as a memorial of him? Let us hope and believe that there are many Christians in every age, who, like Joseph, are the Lords hidden servants, unknown to the Church and the world, but well known to God. Even in Elijahs time there were seven thousand in Israel who had never bowed the knee to Baal, although the desponding prophet knew nothing of it. Perhaps, at this very day, there are saints in the back streets of some of our great towns, or in the lanes of some of our country parishes, who make no noise in the world, and yet love Christ and are loved by Him. Ill-health, or poverty, or the daily cares of some laborious calling, render it impossible for them to come forward in public; and so they live and die comparatively unknown. Yet the last day may show an astonished world that some of these very people, like Joseph, honored Christ as much as any on earth, and that their names were written in heaven. After all, it is special circumstances that bring to the surface special Christians. It is not those who make the greatest show in the Church, who are always found the fastest friends of Christ. We learn, for another thing, from these verses, that there are some servants of Christ whose latter end is better than their beginning. The case of Nicodemus teaches that lesson very plainly. The only man who dared to help Joseph in his holy work of burying our Lord, was one who at first came to Jesus by night, and was nothing better than an ignorant inquirer after truth. At a later period in our Lords ministry we find this same Nicodemus coming forward with somewhat more boldness, and raising in the Council of the Pharisees the question, Does our law judge any man, before it hear him, and know what he doeth? (John vii. 51.) Finally, we see him in the passage before us, ministering to our Lords dead body, and not ashamed to take an active part in giving to the despised Nazarene an honorable burial. How great the contrast between the man who timidly crept into the Lords lodging to ask a question, and the man who brought a hundred pounds weight of myrrh and aloes to anoint His dead body! Yet it was the same Nicodemus. How great may be a mans growth in grace, and faith, and knowledge, and courage, in the short space of three years. We shall do well to store up these things in our minds, and to remember the case of Nicodemus, in forming our estimate of other peoples religion. We must not condemn others as graceless and godless, because they do not see the whole truth at once, and only reach decided Christianity by slow degrees. The Holy Ghost always leads believers to the same foundation truths, and into the same highway to heaven. In these there is invariable uniformity. But the Holy Ghost does not always lead believers through the same experience, or at the same rate of speed. In this there is much diversity in His operations. He that says conversion is a needless thing, and that an unconverted man may be saved, is undoubtedly under a strange delusion. But he that says that no one is converted except he becomes a full-blown and established Christian in a single day, is no less under a delusion. Let us not judge others rashly and hastily. Let us believe that a mans beginnings in religion may be very small, and yet his latter end may greatly increase. Has a man real grace? Has he within him the genuine work of the Spirit? This is the grand question. If he has, we may safely hope that his grace will grow, and we should deal with him gently, and bear with him charitably, though at present he may be a mere babe in spiritual attainments. The life in a helpless infant is as real and true a thing as the life in a full-grown man: the difference is only one of degree. Who hath despised the day of small things? (Zech. iv. 10.) The very Christian who begins his religion with a timid night-visit, and an ignorant inquiry, may stand forward alone one day, and confess Christ boldly in the full light of the sun. We learn, lastly, from these verses, that the burial of the dead is an act which God sanctions and approves. We need not doubt that this is part of the lesson which the passage before us was meant to convey to our minds. Of course, it supplies unanswerable evidence that our Lord really died, and afterwards really rose again; but it also teaches that, when the body of a Christian is dead, there is fitness and meetness in burying it with decent honor. It is not for nothing that the burials of Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and Joseph, and Moses are carefully recorded in holy writ. It is not for nothing that we are told that John the Baptist was laid in a tomb; and that devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him. (Acts viii. 2.) It is not for nothing that we are told so particularly about the burial of Christ. The true Christian need never be ashamed of regarding a funeral with peculiar reverence and solemnity. It is the body, which may be the instrument of committing the greatest sins, or of bringing the greatest glory to God. It is the body, which the eternal Son of God honored by dwelling in it for thirty and three years, and finally dying in our stead. It is the body, with which He rose again and ascended up into heaven. It is the body, in which He sits at the right hand of God, and represents us before the Father, as our Advocate and Priest. It is the body, which is now the temple of the Holy Ghost, while the believer lives. It is the body, which will rise again, when the last trumpet sounds, and, re-united to the soul, will live in heaven to all eternity. Surely, in the face of such facts as these, we never need suppose that reverence bestowed on the burial of the body is reverence thrown away. Let us leave the subject with one word of caution. Let us take care that we do not regard a sumptuous funeral as an atonement for a life wasted in carelessness and sin. We may bury a man in the most expensive style, and spend hundreds of pounds in mourning. We may place over his grave a costly marble stone, and inscribe on it a flattering epitaph. But all this will not save our souls or his. The turning point at the last day will not be how we are buried, but whether we were buried with Christ, and repented and believed. (Rom. vi. 4.) Better a thousand times to die the death of the righteous, have a lowly grave and a paupers funeral, than to die graceless, and lie under a marble tomb! J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 20, 2011

Sunday··2011·05·15
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXX. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Redeemer, whither should I flee, Or how escape the wrath to come? The weary sinner flies to thee For shelter from impending doom: Smile on me, gracious Lord, and shew Thyself the friend of sinners now. Beneath the shadow of thy cross,    The heavy-laden soul finds rest: Let me esteem the world as dross,    So I may be of Christ possessd! I borrow evry joy from thee, For thou art life and light to me. Close to my Saviours bloody tree,    My soul, untird, shall ever cleave; Both scourgd and crucified with thee,    With Christ resolved to die and live. My prayr, my grand ambition this, Living and dying to be his. O nail me to the sacred wood,    There hold me by the Spirits chain, There seal me with thy fastning blood,    Nor ever let me loose again: There may I bow my suppliant knee, And own no other Lord but thee! The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). John 21:1825 Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were younger, you used to gird yourself and walk wherever you wished; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands and someone else will gird you, and bring you where you do not wish to go. 19 Now this He said, signifying by what kind of death he would glorify God And when He had spoken this, He said to him, Follow Me! 20 Peter, turning around, saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following them; the one who also had leaned back on His bosom at the supper and said, Lord, who is the one who betrays You? 21 So Peter seeing him said to Jesus, Lord, and what about this man? 22 Jesus said to him, If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you? You follow Me! 23 Therefore this saying went out among the brethren that that disciple would not die; yet Jesus did not say to him that he would not die, but only, If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you? 24 This is the disciple who is testifying to these things and wrote these things, and we know that his testimony is true. 25 And there are also many other things which Jesus did, which if they were written in detail, I suppose that even the world itself would not contain the books that would be written.    These verses form the conclusion of St. Johns Gospel, and bring to an end the most precious book in the Bible. The man is much to be pitied who can read the passage without serious and solemn feelings. It is like listening to the parting words of a friend, whom we may possibly not see again. Let us reverently consider the lessons which this Scripture contains. We learn, for one thing, from these verses, that the future history of Christians, both in life and death, is foreknown by Christ. The Lord tells Simon Peter, When thou art old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and carry thee whither thou wouldest not. These words, without controversy, were a prediction of the manner of the Apostles death. They were fulfilled in after days, it is commonly supposed, when Peter was crucified as a martyr for Christs sake. The time, the place, the manner, the painfulness to flesh and blood of the disciples death, were all matters foreseen by the Master. The truth before us is eminently full of comfort to a true believer. To obtain foreknowledge of things to come would, in most cases, be a sorrowful possession. To know what was going to befall us, and yet not to be able to prevent it, would make us simply miserable. But it is an unspeakable consolation to remember, that our whole future is known and fore-arranged by Christ. There is no such thing as luck, chance, or accident, in the journey of our life. Everything from beginning to end is foreseen,arranged by One who is too wise to err, and too loving to do us harm. Let us store up this truth in our minds, and use it diligently in all the days of darkness through which we may yet have to pass. In such days we should lean back on the thought, Christ knows this, and knew it when He called me to be His disciple. It is foolish to repine and murmur over the troubles of those whom we love. We should rather fall back on the thought that all is well done. It is useless to fret and be rebellious, when we ourselves have bitter cups to drink. We should rather say, This also is from the Lord: He foresaw it, and would have prevented it, if it had not been for my good. Happy are those who can enter into the spirit of that old saint, who said, I have made a covenant with my Lord, that I will never take amiss anything that He does to me. We may have to walk sometimes through rough places, on our way to heaven. But surely it is a comforting, soothing reflection, Every step of my journey was foreknown by Christ. We learn, secondly, in these verses, that a believers death is intended to glorify God. The Holy Ghost tells us this truth in plain language. He graciously interprets the dark saying, which fell from our Lords lips about Peters end. He tells us that Jesus spake this, signifying by what death he should glorify God. The thing before us is probably not considered as much as it ought to be. We are so apt to regard life as the only season for honoring Christ, and action as the only mode of showing our religion, that we overlook death, except as a painful termination of usefulness. Yet surely this ought not so to be. We may die to the Lord; as well as live to the Lord; we may be patient sufferers as well as active workers. Like Samson, we may do more for God in our death, than we ever did in our lives. It is probable that the patient deaths of our martyred Reformers had more effect on the minds of Englishmen, than all the sermons they preached, and all the books they wrote. One thing, at all events, is certain,the blood of the English martyrs was the seed of the English Church. We may glorify God in death, by being ready for it whenever it comes. The Christian who is found like a sentinel at his post, like a servant with his loins girded and his lamp burning, with a heart packed up and ready to go, the man to whom sudden death, by the common consent of all who knew him, is sudden glory,this, this is a man whose end brings glory to God.We may glorify God in death, by patiently enduring its pains. The Christian whose spirit has complete victory over the flesh, who quietly feels the pins of his earthly tabernacle plucked up with great bodily agonies, and yet never murmurs or complains, but silently enjoys inward peace,this, this again, is a man whose end brings glory to God.We may glorify God in death, by testifying to others the comfort and support that we find in the grace of Christ. It is a great thing, when a mortal man can say with David, Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. (Psalm xxiii. 4.) The Christian who, like Standfast in Pilgrims Progress, can stand for a while in the river, and talk calmly to his companions, saying, My foot is fixed sure: my toilsome days are ended,this, this is a man whose end brings glory to God. Deaths like these leave a mark on the living, and are not soon forgotten. Let us pray, while we live in health, that we may glorify God in our end. Let us leave it to God to choose the where, and when, and how, and all the manner of our departing. Let us only ask that it may glorify God. He is a wise man who takes John Bunyans advice, and keeps his last hour continually in mind, and makes it his company-keeper. It was a weighty saying of John Wesley, when one found fault with the doctrines and practices of the Methodists,At any rate our people die well. We learn, thirdly, in these verses, that whatever we may think about the condition of other people, we should think first about our own. When Peter inquired curiously and anxiously about the future of the Apostle John, he received from our Lord an answer of deep meaning: If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? Follow thou Me. Hard to understand as some part of that sentence may be, it contains a practical lesson which cannot be mistaken. It commands every Christian to remember his own heart first, and to look at home. Of course our blessed Lord does not wish us to neglect the souls of others, or to take no interest in their condition. Such a state of mind would be nothing less than uncharitable selfishness, and would prove plainly that we had not the grace of God. The servant of Christ will have a wide, broad heart, like his Master, and will desire the present and eternal happiness of all around him. He will long and labor to lessen the sorrows, and to increase the joys, of every one within his reach, and, as he has opportunity, to do good to all men. But, in all his doing, the servant of Christ must never forget his own soul. Charity, and true religion, must both begin at home. It is vain to deny that our Lords solemn caution to His impetuous disciple is greatly needed in the present day. Such is the weakness of human nature, that even true Christians are continually liable to run into extremes. Some are so entirely absorbed in their own inward experience, and their own hearts conflict, that they forget the world outside. Others are so busy about doing good to the world, that they neglect to cultivate their own souls. Both are wrong, and both need to see a more excellent way; but none perhaps do so much harm to religion as those who are busy-bodies about others salvation, and at the same time neglecters of their own. From such a snare as this may the ringing words of our Lord deliver us! Whatever we do for others (and we never can do enough), let us not forget our own inner man. Unhappily, the Bride, in Canticles, is not the only person who has cause to complain: They made me keeper of the vineyards; but my own vineyard I have not kept. (Cant. i. 6.) We learn, lastly, from these verses, the number and greatness of Christs works during His earthly ministry. John concludes his Gospel with these remarkable words, There are many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose the world itself could not contain the books that should be written.Of course we must not torture these words, by pressing them to an excessively literal interpretation. To suppose that the Evangelist meant the world could not hold the material volumes which would be written, is evidently unreasonable and absurd. The only sensible interpretation must be a spiritual and figurative one. As much of Christs sayings and doings is recorded as the mind of man can take in. It would not be good for the world to have more. The human mind, like the body, can only digest a certain quantity. The world could not contain more, because it would not. As many miracles, as many parables, as many sermons, as many conversions, as many words of kindness, as many deeds of mercy, as many journeys, as many prayers, as many warnings, as many promises, are recorded, as the world can possibly require. If more had been recorded they would have been only thrown away. There is enough to make every unbeliever without excuse, enough to show every inquirer the way to heaven, enough to satisfy the heart of every honest believer, enough to condemn man if he does not repent and believe, enough to glorify God. The largest vessel can only contain a certain quantity of liquid. The mind of all mankind would not appreciate more about Christ, if more had been written. There is enough and to spare. This witness is true. Let us deny it if we can. And now let us close the Gospel of St. John with mingled feelings of deep humility and deep thankfulness. We may well be humble when we think how ignorant we are, and how little we comprehend of the treasures which this Gospel contains. But we may well be thankful, when we reflect how clear and plain is the instruction which it gives us about the way of salvation. The man who reads this Gospel profitably, is he who believes that Jesus is the Christ, and, believing, has life through His Name. Do we so believe? Let us never rest till we can give a satisfactory answer to that question! J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Banner of Truth, 2012). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. 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Lords Day 28, 2011

Sunday··2011·07·10
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXXII. Where two or three are gathered together in my name, &c. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Jesus, God of love attend, From thy glorious throne descend; Answer now some waiting heart, Now some hardend soul convert: To our advocate we fly, Let us feel Emanuel nigh: Manifest thy love abroad, Make us now the sons of God. Hover round us, King of kings, Rise with healing in thy wings; Melt our obstinacy down, Cause us to become thine own: Set, O set the captives free, Draw our backward souls to thee; Let us all from thee receive Light to see and life to live. Prostrate at thy mercy seat Let us our beloved meet; Give us in thyself a part, Deep engraven on thine heart: Let us hear thy pardning voice, Bid the broken bones rejoice; Condemnation do away, O make this the happy day! Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, Join to seek and save the lost: Raise some sinner to thy throne, Add a jewel to thy crown! Are we not, without thy light, Darkend with Egyptian night? Light of light, thy powr exert, Lighten each benighted heart! Prayer can mercys door unlock; Open, Lord, to us that knock! Us the heirs of glory seal, With thy benediction fill: Holy Spirit, make us his, Visit evry soul in peace; Give our vanquishd hearts to say, Love divine has won the day! Give the heavy laden rest, Christ make known in evry breast: Void of thee we quickly die, Turn our sackcloth into joy: Witness all our sins forgivn, Grant on earth a glimpse of heavn; Bring the joyful tidings down, Fit us for our future crown. Let us chaunt melodious hymns, Loud as those of cherubims; Join with heart and tongue to bless Christ our strength and righteousness: All our praise to him belongs, Theme of our sublimest songs; Object of our choicest love, Thee we laud with hosts above. Thee we hail with joint acclaim, Shout the glories of thy name; Ever may we feel thee thus, Dear Immanuel, God with us! Prince of peace, thy people see, All our thanks we aim at thee; Deign our tribute to receive, Praise is all we have to give. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). For there is no partiality with God. Romans 2:11 This cannot mean that God makes no difference between man and man. He does make a difference; and not one, but many. Our world is a world of differences; nor would it be the fair, orderly, and goodly world it is, were it not for these. Heights, depths, colors,mountain, valley, rock,sea, forest, stream,sun, moon, and stars,one star differing from another star in glory: these are some of the material or physical differences that make our world what it is. Then in man there is race, nation, color; gifts of body and mind; riches and poverty; fame and obscurity; ranks, degrees, circumstances, sorrows, joys, health, sickness: these in themselves constitute a vast variety, and then they subdivide themselves into minor varieties, which increase, ad infinitum, the differences between man. God has given to every man something of his own, in respect of mind, body, parentage, possessions, gifts, feelings, country, age, health, constitution, which belongs to no other. Thus in many respects He does make a difference between man and man. Nor can this mean that He treats men at random, without reason or plan; irrespective of character, or doings, or believings, as if His dealings were all chance dealings, blind and arbitrary. No. His treatment of His creatures is sovereign, for He is God; but they are not unreasonable; nay, they are most just, wise, and reasonable,infinitely so. Nor does it mean that He has no fixed plan, but takes every man as he comes, allowing each to do as he pleases, and accepting every one because of sincerity, or earnestness, or amiableness, irrespective of error or unbelief. These are the things which men have often assumed; on which they have acted; on which they presume that God acts. These are the things on which the unbelief of the present day lays great stress; resolving every difficulty as to truth, and righteousness, and judgment to come by the reiteration of the text, God is love. Whether such men really believe in a God at all may be questioned; at all events, the God in whom they believe is not the God of the Bible; the Jehovah of the Old Testament, and the Lord of the New; the God of the deluge, the God of Sinai, the God of the great white throne, the God of the second death; but a God who plays fast and loose with law, and morality, and truth, and holiness; whose pardons are the result of mere indifference to sin,if there be such things as pardon at all; whose coming assize of judgment will be a mere form or mockery, perhaps the proclamation of universal amnesty to men and devils, with the abolition of hell itself as the summing up of the whole. But let us consider what the apostle means by saying that God is no respecter of persons. It means two things. 1. That God has no respect to the outward appearance or circumstances of a man in dealing with him. God takes him for what he is, not for what he seems. The word translated, person, means mask or face covering; that which disguises a man, and makes him look different from what he is. God regardeth not the person or appearance of a man. To God the man is just what he is exactly, and neither more or less. False pretences or disguises are vain. The crown of the king is no thing to him; the gems of the wealthy add nothing to the mans acceptance; the power of the statesman does not overawe the Judge of all; the Briton is not favored because he is such, nor the Chinese disfavored because he is such. In regard to all these externalisms, or shows, or masks, there is no respect of persons with God. 2. That in regard to justice and grace, God does not follow mans estimates at all, either outward or inward. God has His own standard, His own estimate, His own way of procedure in treating the sinner, whether for condemnation or acceptance. The usual elements which decide mans judgment have no place in Gods. (1.) Gods estimate or rule in regard to justice, is that the doers of the law, the whole law, the unmodified law, shall live by it. So that if any man, whoever he be, Jew or Gentile, Briton or African, can come to God, and shew that he has kept the whole law, he shall be accepted without any abatement made in consideration of outward circumstances whether national or personal. (2.) Gods estimate or rule in regard to grace, is that any man, whoever he be, who will consent to be indebted to the Son of God and His work for acceptance, shall be accepted. This is the way in which grace shews itself to be no respecter of persons. He that has a personal claim, shall have that claim fairly considered and weighed; he that has none, but is willing to take instead the claim of another, even of Christ, shall be received according to that divine claim; whatever he may be, or may have been, in respect of sin, or demerit, or nation, or intellect, or circumstances. The apostles object is to declare these three things: 1. Gods purpose of dealing with the sons of men. He is not going to let them alone, nor to allow them to have their own way. 2. Gods plan of dealing with them. He does so as God, sovereign and righteous, yet gracious. He will be fair and reasonable in all His dealings. He will not respect mens persons, whether high or low. 3. His willingness to receive any. He has provided a method of reception; and He invites them. He is willing, infinitely willing, to receive any one of Adams sons and daughters, whoever or whatever he may be. Horatius Bonar, Light & Truth: Bible Thoughts & Themes Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. 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Lords Day 35, 2011

Sunday··2011·08·28
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXXIII. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Come from on high, my King and God, My confidence thou art; Display the virtue of thy blood, And circumcise my heart. From heavn, thy holy place, on me Descend in mercy down; Water of life, I thirst for thee, To know thee for my own. Rend, O rend the guilty veil, That keeps me from my God; Remove the bar, and let me feel That I am thine abode. O might this worthless heart of mine The Saviours temple be! Emptyd of evry love but thine, And shut to all but thee! The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). 19 . . . the revealing of the sons of God. Romans 8 The name, sons of God, is not exclusively applicable to the church. Angels are called sons (Job 38:7); so is Adam (Luke 3:38); so is Israel (Hosea 1:10). Yet the redeemed get that name in a deeper, fuller sense, by reason of their higher standing and their closer connection with the Son of God (1 John 3:1; Romans 8:17, 29; Revelation 21:7). There are thus outer and inner, higher and lower, circles of sonship; Christ the one center; and His redeemed occupying the innermost circle or region nearest to Himself, and nearest to the Father. The history of these sons,these heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ, the redeemed from among men,divides itself into the following parts or epochs: I. Their past eternity. They had a history ere they were born; not conscious to themselves, but truly in the eye and purpose of God. (Roman 8:29; Ephesians 1:3, 5; 2 Timothy 1:9; Revelation 17:8.) In these passages the history of each saint and of the church of God is traced to that eternity in which God only existed. Even then they were sons of God by anticipation; sons of God in the Fathers purpose, and in the everlasting covenant. How marvelous, how glorious their history! II. Their unregenerate life on earth. They were born no better than others; shapen in iniquity; children of wrath; able to claim kindred only with the first Adam, only with the flesh and with earth; not a vestige of the second Adam about them; no trace of heavenly sonship; no lineament of their Father in heaven; walking according to the course of this world; hateful and hating one another; their hearts enmity against God. III. Their adoption. In Gods purpose this adoption stood from eternity; but it was seen when they actually passed out of the family of the evil one into that of God. When they were begotten again they became sons, receiving the name, privileges, legal rights of Sons. Let us note the different statements of Scripture as to these things: (1.) They are begotten again. (1 Peter 1:3.) They are born of time Spirit (John 3:3), born from above. (2.) They believe. (Galatians 3:26.) They pass out of the region of unbelief into that of faith. In believing they become sons. (3.) They receive Christ. (John 1:12.) They accept the Fathers testimony to Him as the Son of God, and the Christ of God. (4.) They get the name of sons. (1 John 3:1) They are now called sons of God. This is their new name, given by God himself. (5.) They receive the spirit of adoption. (Galatians 4:5,6.) A new spirit fills them; the spirit of sonship; and, Abba, Father, is their cry. (6.) They are led by the Spirit. (Roman 8:14.) They are not their own guides; nor do they trust in human guidance; but are led by Him. (7.) They are chastened. (Hebrew 12:7.) Discipline is their lot; and chastisement is the badge of sonship. (8.) They are brought to glory. (Hebrew 2:10.) To this are they redeemed and called. Whom He justified, them He also glorified. (9.) They are made like Christ himself. (Romans 8:29; 1 John 3:2.) Conformity to the Son of God is their destiny and their privilege: We shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. IV. Their time of obscurity. For a season they are hidden; mens eyes are holden so that they do not recognize them; they are in disguise; the world does not believe that they are what they claim to be, or that their prospects are so very glorious. Their life is hid with Christ in God. It doth not yet appear what they shall be. They do not wear the raiment either of kings or of sons. They are strangers and pilgrims. This is the day of their obscurity and non-acknowledgment by men. As it was with their Lord, so with them. He was unknown and unrecognized; nay, despised and rejected. This is the discipline through which they are passing; this the manner in which they glorify the Father upon earth; this the trial of their faith, and this the touchstone of the worlds willingness to own their Lord. Are we content with obscurity? V. The manifestation. The obscurity does not last always; nay, not long. The day is coming when the disguise shall drop off, and their royal robes display themselves; when He who is their life shall appear, they shall appear with Him. Then shall they be like Him to whom they adhered in the day of sorrow and gloom. But let us see, (1.) What this manifestation is. (The word is the same as in 1 Corinthians 1:7; 2 Thessalonians 1:7; 1 Peter 1:7, 13; 4:13.) It is revelation, or outshining, or transfiguration. They are in this conformed to their Lord. They were like Him in their obscurity; they shall be like Him in their manifestation. It shall be transfiguration glory; resurrection glory; royal glory; bridal glory; priestly glory. What a contrast between the obscurity and the manifestation will be presented in that day of unveiling, when they shall shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. What a future is ours! how unlike our present! (2.) When shall the manifestation be? In the day of Christs appearing; not in the day of death. The soul of the saint is blessed when he dies; he is with Christ in Paradise; but still the glory is not full, and the body is still in the grave; the grave is part of our obscurity. But when time Lord descends from heaven, then the dead in Christ shall rise; then this corruptible shall put on incorruption, and death be swallowed up in victory. (3.) How long shall the manifestation be? Forever. A whole eternity of glory. Our obscurity was but a day; our glory is everlasting. We are to shine as the brightness of the firmament, and as the stars forever and ever. What a blaze of splendor will break forth from the glorified church, in the day of manifestation! What, in comparison with this, is the brightness of the sun or stars? Let us walk worthy of our prospects; content with present obscurity and shame; passing the time of our sojourning here in fear. Horatius Bonar, Light & Truth: Bible Thoughts & Themes Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 39, 2011

Sunday··2011·09·25
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXXIV. I know that in my flesh dwelleth no good thing. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Lord, is not all from thee? Is not all fulness thine? Whateer of good there is in me, O Lord, is none of mine. Each holy tendency Did not thy mercy give? And what, O Saviour, what have I That I did not receive? I cannot speak a word, Or think a thought thats good, But what proceedeth from the Lord And cometh forth from God. Jesus, I know full well, What my best actions are: Theyd sink my grievous soul to hell, If unrefind they were. Myself and all I do, O sprinkle with thy blood; Renew me, Saviour, ere I go, To stand before my God. I of myself have nought, That can his justice please; Not one right word, nor act, nor thought, But what I owe to grace. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). 33  Who will bring a charge against Gods elect? God is the one who justifies; Romans 8 One of the churchs names is elect of God; and each of its living members is one whose name is written in the book of life from the foundation of the world (Revelation 17:8). Of these chosen ones the history is thus summed up: Whom He did predestinate, them He also called; and whom He called, them He also justified; and whom He justified, them He also glorified (Romans 7:30). The state in which each one of these is born into the world is that of condemnation; the state into which each one is brought, in believing, is that of no condemnation (Romans 8:1). Forgiveness of sinspresent, conscious, complete forgivenessis that into which faith introduces us, and out of which unbelief alone can keep us. Justification from all thingscertain, immediate, and unchanging justificationis our portion here. It is respecting us, as men forgiven and justified, that the apostle asks, Who shall lay anything to the charge of Gods elect? On believing the gospel of forgiveness, they were placed beyond the reach and risk of any charge or impeachment whatsoever; they are brought by God into such a state as to render condemnation an impossibility; for the forgiveness is irreversible, and the righteousness in which they stand is divine. Not that they cease to be sinners. But they cease to be treated as guilty. Iniquities prevail; but there is continual forgiveness to cancel these, and a perfect righteousness to cover these, and the ever-flowing blood of the everlasting covenant to wash all guilt away as it comes up, and to prevent their peace with God from being broken. They do sin; but they have an Advocate with the Father; and who can demand the execution of the penalty in their case? Who shall condemn? Who can do it? Who dare do it? Who has the right to do it? Not angels. They are too glad to welcome back the sinner, and to take the side of those whose sight God has taken. Devils would, if they could. But they cannot. The prey is taken from the mighty, and placed beyond their grasp. The law might have done it; but it has been satisfied; nay, magnified. It has therefore no claim, and could gain no object by accusing us; for our acquittal is a righteous onean acquittal in which law itself rejoices. Mark, then, how complete and how satisfactory the challenge is; for the words of our text are not so much a question as a challengea challenge thrown down before the universe! I. It is a righteous challenge. It is not the challenge of one who, through might, had baffled right, and triumphed over law. It is that of one who sees all righteousness fulfilled, and all good confirmed, by that very sentence which acquits himself; who, unable to contribute aught toward his own acquittal, has recognized Gods righteous way of justifying the unrighteous, and in doing so, has found deliverance from condemnation. It is a challenge so righteous, that every righteous being responds to it; so righteous, that his own conscience, even when most fully awakened and enlightened by the Holy Spirit, rests satisfied and unalarmed; so righteous, that none can undertake to answer it, save those who are prepared to reject Gods way of saving the lost, and forgiving the condemned. II. It is a holy challenge. it is not that of one who was seeking to sin that grace may abound, but of one who saw that this is Gods way of delivering him from sin, and making him hate sin. Gods way of forgiveness brings out all the loathsomeness of sin, shews it to be the enemy both of God and of the sinner. Thus the man who says, Who shall hay anything to my charge? who is he that condemneth? is the man who is also saying, Now I have some hope of being holy; now I shall be delivered from sin; now sin has received its death-blow; and now love and a free pardon will do what terror and uncertainty, and an unsatisfied law, could never have done. Being delivered from the first and great matter of seeking a forgiveness, by having got that question for ever laid to rest, I am free to attend undistractedly to the one question, How shall I be holy, and by a holy life serve and glorify God? III. It is a joyful challenge. The question, and the way of putting it, shew the exulting gladness of the soul. It is the joy of a soul delivered from an infinite fear; from overwhelming foreboding of wrath; from the uncertainties of the future, and the dreaded vengeance of an angry God. What gladness is this! To be forgiven all sin, and clothed with an infinite righteousness! To be as thoroughly assured of the favor of God, as formerly of His displeasure! To see the dark cloud of wrath which had wrapped the soul round rise upwards, and pass away, leaving the wide azure clear and bright, with not a mist to intercept the light of reconciliation and love, pouring down from the heaven of heavens! What joy unspeakable and full of glory is this! IV. It is an unanswerable challenge. It is boldly put, and with no muffled voice. It is spoken aloud, that all may hear, and answer if they can. But no one can take it up. There is silence in heaven, and earth, and hell. It is Pauls challenge to the universe. Nay rather, it is the Holy Spirits challenge. Who shall answer Paul? Who shall answer the Holy Ghost? Who shall condemn us? Who shall lay anything to our charge? Who shall trouble our conscience or break our peace? We ask aloud; we repeat the challenge to the devil and all his legions. But no answer is given. We hear only the echo of our own voice. It is unanswerable even now; for from the first moment that we believed, we were entitled to take it up. It shall be no less unanswerable when we go down to the tomb; and we may make the caverns of the dead re-echo with it. It shall be unanswerable in the day of the Lord; so that, even when standing before the judgment seat, surrounded with angels, or surrounded with devils, we may lift up our voice and say, Who shall lay anything to my charge? Nor is there anything presumptuous in this challenge. It is one of simple faith. It is meant for every believing man; and there is something lacking in that faith which falters here. A believed gospel ought to lead him who believes it to adopt this bold and blessed attitude. For a believed gospel is meant to assure the believing soul of forgiveness and eternal life. It is a challenge which God himself will own. He does not reckon it too bold or too decided. He puts it into our lips, and He will acknowledge it. In our believing, we set our Amen to His testimony; and in His giving us this challenge, He is setting His Amen to our faith. Nay, not only will He own it, but He will take it up out of our lips, and Himself proclaim it through the universe, Who shall lay anything to the charge of my elect? Our right to take up this challenge is simply our having believed the gospel. It is not our graces or evidences that embolden us thus to speak. It is not as holy men, or old Christians, or deeply humbled souls, that we have a warrant to do so. Our warrant is simply our having believed the gospel. How much we lose from not seeing the sure and high standing into which a believed gospel brings us, long before we have time to consider our own selves, or number up our graces! It would indeed be presumption to rest an assurance like this, or a challenge like this, upon our own graces; but it is no presumption to rest this on the gospel of the grace of God. Horatius Bonar, Light & Truth: Bible Thoughts & Themes Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 46, 2011

Sunday··2011·11·13
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXXV. Refuge in the Righteousness of Christ. Augustus Toplady (17401778) From thy supreme tribunal, Lord, Where justice sits severe, I to thy mercy seat appeal, And beg forgiveness there. Tho I have sinnd before the throne, My advocate I see: Jesus, be thou my Judge, and let My sentence come from thee. Lo, weary to thy cross I fly, There let me shelter find: Lord, when thou callst thy ransomd home, leave me not behind! I joyfully embrace thy love To fallen man reveald; My hope of glory, dearest Lord, On thee alone I build. The law was satisfyd by him Who flesh for me was made: Its penalty he underwent, Its precepts he obeyd. Desert and all self-righteousness I utterly forego; My robe of everlasting bliss, My wedding garment thou! The spotless Saviour livd for me, And dyd upon the Mount: Th obedience of his life and death Is placd to my account. Canst thou forget that awful hour, That sad, tremendous scene, When thy dear blood on Calvary Flowd out at evry vein ? No, Saviour, no; thy wounds are fresh, Evn now they intercede; Still, in effect, for guilty man Incessantly they bleed. Thine ears of mercy still attend A contrite sinners cries, A broken heart, that groans for God, Thou never wilt despise. Love incomprehensible, That made thee bleed for me! The Judge of all hath sufferd death To set his prisoner free! The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). 13 Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15 It will be good to take this apostolic prayer to pieces, and mark each separate part and truth. I. The hope. It is of the things hoped for that the apostle is speaking. It is not to hope, or to a hope, but to the hope, that he is pointing. It is not that thing called hope, as springing up in our breasts, that he would have us dwell upon; it is the glory to be revealed, the hope which is laid up for us in heaven. This is the bright star on which he fixes our eye. The inheritance, the kingdom, the glory, the new heavens and earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness; these make up what the apostle announces as the churchs hope, her one resplendent hope, which is to be realized when her Lord appears. This is the hope that fills up her future, and sheds brightness on her present, even amid all her heaviness through manifold temptations. II. The God of the hope. Of that hope He is the beginning, the middle, and the end; the center and the circumference; its root, and stem, and branches; its seed, its blossom, and its fruit. There is not one of these things hoped for but is to be traced to Him as its sole fountain head. Hence its peculiar blessedness and glory; hence also the security which we have for its realization when the fullness of the time is come. That hope cannot fail us, because the God of the hope is faithful and true. He will most surely introduce us into its glory; or rather, He will make that glory rise on us like the glory of the rising sun. III. Fill you with all joy and peace. There is joy; joy unspeakable and full of glory; but it is not of earth. It comes down from heaven. There is peace; the peace which passeth all understanding; but its fountain is above. It is God who gives these; and He does so as the God of the hope. The author of the hope is the provider of the joy and the peace; so that we may be sure these will be like Himself, and like the hope. They will be like the hope, and the hope will be like them; they the earnest of the hope; and the hope their consummation and fullness. This God of the hope not only gives the joy and peace, but He fills us with them; nay, He fills us with all joy and peace, leaving out no part of the joy and the peace, and leaving no part of us unfilled! Blessed and glorious petition, the God of the hope fill you with all joy and peace! IV. In believing. This joy and peace, though heavenly in their origin and nature, were not miraculous. They did not gush up into the soul like water springing from the sand by some supernatural touch. They found their way into the soul by a very natural, very simple, but very effectual channel,the belief of Gods good hews about His only begotten Son. They were not the reward of believing; they were not purchased by believing nor did they come in after believing: they were obtained in believing. Faith did nothing but hand in its report to the soul. That report was both glad and true. As soon then as the report thus found its way in, all was changed. The joy and the peace which that report contained filled the soul. And as it was thus that the joy and peace came in, so it is thus that they continue in. They began in believing, and they are maintained in precisely the same way; so that if at any time they are interrupted, we must have recourse to the same report which gladdened us at first, and which is still as sufficient to gladden us again. The thing that gladden us was the thing which we believed. Not our way of believing it; not the quality nor the quantity of our faith; but simply the thing believed the glad tidings of great joy concerning Him who died, and was buried, and rose again. If the thing believed proves ineffectual to gladden, no considerations as to the satisfactory nature or composition of our own faith will prove sufficient. The attempt to believe in our own faith instead of believing in Christ must be abortive both in itself and in its results; and the incessant efforts of some to get up a faith worthy of being believed in, and capable of recommending them to God, are the dictate and the development of as hateful a self-righteousness as was ever exhibited by ancient Pharisee or modern Romanist. No. When the God of the hope fills us with all joy and peace, He does so by presenting us with objects full of joy and peace, so that, in believing, we are filled with the blessedness which they contain. V. That ye may abound in the hope. The hope not only fills, but overflows, as the word abound might be rendered. It comes in and lights up the soul with its heavenly brightness; but it does more. It is so glorious and so boundless that the soul cannot contain it. We fix our eye on it; and as we gaze it expands, and enlarges, and intensifies. It grows brighter, and more real, and more excellent as we continue to dwell upon it. Our faith becomes more and more the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. VI. Through the power of the Holy Ghost. He comes in and dwells in us; thus working in us from within, not from without. He comes in as the Spirit of power, and love, and of a sound mind. He comes in as the Spirit of truth, the Spirit of faith, the Spirit of joy and peace, the Spirit of Christ. He comes in as the seal by which we are sealed unto the day of redemption; Gods own seal which stamps us as Gods property. He comes in as the witness, witnessing with our spirits that we are the sons of God. He comes in as the earnest of the inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession. He comes in, not in feebleness, but in power; in almighty power, to work a work in us and for us, which but for Him must remain unaccomplished forever. Horatius Bonar, Light & Truth: Bible Thoughts & Themes Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 2, 2012

Sunday··2012·01·08
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXXVI. For Pardon of Sin. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Jesus, thy feet I will not leave, Till I the precious gift receive, The purchasd pearl possess: Impart it, gracious Lord, while I With supplications humblest cry, Invest the throne of grace. Baptize me with the Holy Ghost; Make this the day of Pentecost, Wherein my soul may prove Thy Spirits sweet renewing powr, And show me in this happy hour, The riches of thy love. Thou canst not always hide thy face, Thou wilt at last my soul embrace, Thou yet will make me clean: My God, is there not room for me? Ill wait with patience, Lord, on thee, Till thou shalt take me in. Remember, Lord, that Jesus bled, That Jesus bowd his dying head, And sweated bloody sweat: He bore thy wrath and curse for me In his own body on the tree, And more than paid my debt. Surely he hath my pardon bought, A perfect righteousness wrought out His people to redeem: O that his righteousness might be By grace imputed now to me: As were my sins to him. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). 11For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13each mans work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each mans work. 14If any mans work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward. 15If any mans work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. 1 Corinthians 3 The Foundation, The Building, And The Testing. It is of himself and of Apollos that Paul is specially speaking here; or more generally, of ministers of Christ; stewards of the mysteries of God (4:1); the planters, the waterers, the labourers, the tillers, the builders (3:7, 9). Yet the great truth here taught is for all, Christians. The special doctrine here is that there may be a right foundation and a wrong building. If the foundation be right, though the superstructure be faulty, all will not be lost; yet the loss will be great. The warning both to ministers and Christians is, to beware of building wrongly upon a right foundation. I. The foundation. This is Christ alone. Other foundation can no man lay. Foundation stones are vast and massive; like those we see at Jerusalem, let into the solid rock of Moriah, as we see from the recent excavations. God has laid the foundation Himself (Isaiah 28:16.) Both the foundation and the laying of it are His doing. It is finished; the stone has been laid; once for all. When Paul says, as a wise master builder (or architect) I have laid the foundation (verse 10), he means that he took the great foundation-stone laid in Zion with him wherever he went to preach the gospel, and laid it as the foundation for all the different churches,Corinth, Ephesus, Antioch, or Rome. His proclamation of Christ was his laying the foundation-stone; for this is the one stone; the one living stone, chosen of God, and precious, on which a church can be built or a soul rest. II. The building. Ye are Gods building, says the apostle, speaking of the Corinthian church. As he says in verse 6, Paul planted, and Apollos watered; so here he means to say, I laid the foundation, and others are building on it. But there are two ways of building; the one right, enduring, precious; the other wrong, perishable, worthless; the one gold, silver, precious stones; the other wood, hay, stubble. Both are on the true foundation; but the one is like Solomons temple on Mount Moriah; the other like the present mosque of Omar on the same site. Applied to ministers, it points either to their actual teaching, or to the effects of their teaching; if to their teaching, it refers to the truths or errors taught by them in connection with the one truth of Christ; if to the effects of their teaching, it refers to their rearing a church made up of true saints or of formal professors. During the dark ages there might be some godly men in the ministry; but, cleaving to their superstitions, they taught much error, and built up churches full of superstitious formalists; mere wood, hay, and stubble; mere professors, who had no Christianity about them save the name. At the Reformation we see Calvin, Luther, Knox, Cranmer laying anew the foundation stone throughout Europe, and building on it gold, silver, and precious stones. Subsequently we find the PortRoyalists in France, though retaining the one foundation, building wood, hay, and stubble. So is it with individual Christians. Let them take heed how they build. Let them not say, We have got the right foundation. That is not enough. Look to the whole of your creed, lest you be connecting falsehoods or fables with the cross of Christ. Look to your lives, lest your lives should be made up of most worthless materials. What a description is this of the life of some who perhaps, after all, are Christians! Wood, hay, stubble; nothing more. No gold, no silver, no precious stones; nothing that will come up to Gods estimate; nothing that will stand the fire. III. The testing. A day is coming when the building shall be tried. The foundation stone was tried, and it stood the proof; it is the tried stone (Isaiah 28:16, 2 Peter 2:6.) But the day of trial for the superstructures is yet to come; and the process of fire which is to try them is not yet begun. But it will come. The fire shall devour the stubble, and the flame consume the chaff (Isaiah 5:24.) The day is coming that shall burn as an oven (or furnace, Malachi 3:12.) He is coming whose eyes are as a flame of fire; who is a consuming fire. That is the testing day. Sometimes we read of the fan (Matthew 3:12), and sometimes of the fire; but both processes are for similar ends, sifting, searching, separating (whether by wind or flame) the real from the unreal, the true from the false. Till then both are together. Man is not allowed to try his hand at separation; Judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come; let both (tares add wheat) grow together until the harvest. The sifting time is coming. Nothing will then be taken for granted. All will be subjected to the fiery ordeal; every one shall be salted with fire (Mark 9:49.) This, then, is the question with regard to all we believe and all we do, Will it stand the fire? It may look well, it may be praised by men, it may have public opinion on its side; but will it stand the fire? O man, will your life stand the fire? Will your religion, your creed, your politics, your plans and works, stand the fire? Soon will all be made manifest. The day shall declare it, because it (or rather He) shall be revealed by fire. Do all in anticipation of the day of fiery sifting. IV. The result. If the work done stands the fire, and be proved to be gold and silver, then shall the doer not only be saved, but he shall receive a reward; he shall have an abundant entrance into the kingdom (2 Peter 1:11) If it wont stand the fire, but proves wood, and hay, and stubble, then the doer, if he be on the foundation, shall be saved; he shall not perish with his work, but he gets no reward; he is barely saved; saved so as by fire, like one escaping merely with life out of a burning house, like Lot out of Sodom. (1.) The importance of a right foundation. There is but one rock, one stone, laid in Zion; one cross, one Saviour. (2.) The difference between a right foundation and a right building. There maybe the former without the latter. A false life has sometimes been connected with a true creed. (3.) The difference between the salvation and the reward. There is such a thing as being barely saved, like the thief on the cross. There is such a thing as a starless crown,a low place in heaven,deliverance from hell, without the recompense and the glory. There is such a thing as a saved soul, but a wasted life. (4.) The importance of seeking the reward as well as the salvation. Some are all their lives occupied with the latter. They never get beyond it; and, not having got the great question settled between them and God, they are not in a condition to aim at the reward. Let us at once get the matter of personal forgiveness settled, and press toward the mark (or along the line or mark, (ጱь ɜĜ?, Philippians 3:14) for the prize of the high calling (the above or heavenly calling, ьƜ ? ጪƜɌ), laying up treasures in heaven, seeking to attain to the resurrection of the dead, with all its glories. (5.) Time ditty of judging ourselves now, that we may not be judged hereafter. Anticipate the day of the fire. Have all in readiness for it. Get quit of the wood, and hay, and stubble; all false doctrine; all unbelieving works or corrupt worship. Get the gold, and the silver, and the gems. (6.) The awfulness of being unsaved. If to lose the reward be so terrible, what must it be to lose the salvation itself; to be lost; not to be saved even so as by fire, but to perish in the fire? Horatius Bonar, Light & Truth: Bible Thoughts & Themes Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 9, 2012

Sunday··2012·02·26
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXXVIII. Phil. ii. 5. Let this mind he in you which was also in Christ Jesus. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Lord I feel a carnal mind That hangs about me still, Vainly tho I strive to bind My own rebellious will; Is not haughtiness of heart The gulf between my God and me? Meek Redeemer now impart Thine own humility. Fain would I my Lord pursue, Be all my Saviour taught, Do as Jesus bid me do, And think as Jesus thought: But tis thou must change my heart, The perfect gift must come from thee: Meek Redeemer now impart Thine own humility. Lord, I cannot, must not rest, Till I thy mind obtain, Chase presumption from my breast, And all thy mildness gain; Give me, Lord, thy gentle heart, Thy lowly mind my portion be: Meek Redeemer now impart Thine own humility. Let thy cross my will control: Conform me to my guide; In thine image mould my soul, And crucify my pride; Give me, Lord, a contrite heart, A heart that always looks to thee: Meek Redeemer, now impart Thine own humility. Tear away my evry boast, My stubborn mind abase; Saviour, fix my only trust In thy redeeming grace: Give me a submissive heart, From pride and self dependance free; Meek Redeemer, now impart Thine own humility. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). 4Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one. 5 For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords, 6 yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him. 1 Corinthians 8 The Many Gods And The One God. The meaning of this passage might be more fully expressed thus: As concerning the things sacrificed to idols, we know that an idol is a nothing in the world, and that there is no God but one; but even were there those beings that are called gods, either in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are gods many and lords many (gods and demigods as they are called), yet to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we for Him (for His service and glory, ?? and ? contrasted); and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by Him. It is like Joshuas as for me (Joshua 24:15). Here are (1) the worlds many gods; (2) the saints one God; (3) the saints one Christ. I. The worlds many gods. To make gods for himself has been mans great object all along. Every nation has had its gods, and every age. Assyria had its gods; Babylon, Egypt, Persia, Greece, Rome. Men multiplied gods without number. Everything or anything that could be a substitute for God, in any shape, animate or inanimate, men set up and worshipped. They were never tired of god-making. All of them vanity; things that profit nothing; vain helpers in the time of need. O world! what will become of thy many gods in the day when Jehovah arises to shake terribly the earth? And what profit will these gods afford the millions who have fled to them for refuge? Is there no god-making still, even in our day? Money, business, pleasure, lusts, luxuries! Are not these thy gods, O world? And are these better than the gods of Greece? Will they prove more helpful in the day of trouble than Baal, or Jupiter, or Buddha? Will they forgive, and save, and comfort? II. The saints one God. Yes; one only, the living and the true God. Jehovah is His name. With undistracted eye the Christian looks but to One, not many; with undivided heart he fixes on One, not many; His heart was made for only One, and that one sufficient to fill his whole heart, and soul, and being. How the thought of that one God,infinite, eternal, and unchangeable,makes all that are called gods to vanish utterly away. One infinite Jehovah, King eternal, immortal and invisible, He is our portion. Jehovah is my portion, saith my soul. We need no other; we need no more. This God is our God. Whom have we in heaven but Him, and whom on earth do we desire besides Him? One God, Jehovah, King of kings, and Lord of lords, Creator of heaven and earth, who filleth all in all, this is our God forever and ever: He will be our guide even unto death (Psalm 48:14). III. The saints one Christ. To us there is but one Lord Jesus Christ. As there are many beings who go under the name of God, so are there many who go under the name of Christ, yet there is but one Christ, not two, nor many. The tendency of the present day is to multiply Christs. A Christ as the impersonation or representative of humanity is quite in accordance with the spirit of the age. But every one wants to have his own Christ, just as each heathen wanted to have his own god; the Christ that suits his own fancy, or his own philosophy, or his own intellect, or his own circumstances. So that there are many Christs in the world even among those who profess to take the Bible as their instructor; still more among those who reject it; for even among those there is a groping after a Christ, and the cry goes up, Ecce Homo! Some want a Christ who is not God; others a Christ who is not a sacrifice; a Christ without a cross, and without blood; a Christ who will teach but not expiate sin; a Christ whose life and death are an example of self-surrender to the utmost, but not an atonement; a Christ who is not a judge, nor a law-giver, nor a priest, and only a prophet in the sense of teacher. Thus in the present day there are many Christs. It has been so all along; only the apostle John calls them not Christs but Antichristsmany Antichrists. To us there is but one Christ. He who was announced as the womans seed; He of whom Abels sacrifice spoke; He of whom Enoch prophesied as the avenger; He who was revealed to Abraham as his seed; He of whom Job spoke as the Redeemer; He of whom Moses spoke as the Prophet; of whose work the whole book of Leviticus is full; He of whom David sang, as the sufferer, yet the King; He of whom Isaiah and all the prophets sang; He who proclaimed Himself as come to seek the lost; to whom John the Baptist pointed as the Lamb of God; who hung on the cross, and died in anguish, yet rose again and ascended on high; He is the one Christ whom we recognize. If thus, then, there is but one Christ, then there is but (1.) One cross. Only one; the cross in which Paul gloried, and on which our Surety hung. To acknowledge that one cross is life; to reject it is death. (2.) One Priest. Jesus, our great High Priest, whose is the one unchangeable and everlasting Priesthood; Jesus, who suffered the just for the unjust, and now ever liveth to make intercession for us! (3.) One altar. The altar of the great burnt-offering is the one altar for us. If there be many Christs, there may be many altars; if one Christ, then but one altar. (4.) One sacrifice. Only one! No victim but the one Christ. No blood but that of the one Christ. All self appointed, self-made sacrifices are vain. They cannot take away sin. The one offering can. (5.) One way to the kingdom. There is but a single gate, and a single way; yet these suffice. We need no more. I am the way. No man cometh unto the Father but by me. Horatius Bonar, Light & Truth: Bible Thoughts & Themes Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. 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Lords Day 17, 2012

Sunday··2012·04·22
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Petitionary Hymns Poem XXXIX. For all the Mind of Christ. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Hail, faultless model, sinless guide, In whom no blame was seen! Able thou were, and none beside, To ransom guilty men. I want my happiness below In thee alone to find; Surely thou wilt on me bestow Thy pure, thy heavnly mind! Active for God I fain would be, And do my work assignd: Jesus, look down, implant in me, Thy zealous, fervent mind! While here, it was thy constant aim To benefit mankind: O give me, dear redeeming Lamb, Thy loving, gracious mind! Stiff is my neck, and proud my heart, Unbroken, unresignd: When wilt thou, blessed Lord, impart Thy patient, humble mind! My sins how slowly do I leave, To earthly things inclind! But wean me, Lord, and let me have Thy self defying mind! O might I walk with faithful heed, And look no more behind, Possessd of what I chiefly need, Thy serious steady mind! Still may my evry grace increase, Till I in heaven appear: On earth like thee in holiness, Like thee in glory there. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). 5For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ. 2 Corinthians 1 The Sufferings And The Consolation. The following paraphrase will help to bring out the meaning of this large passage concerning sorrow, and sympathy, and consolation. Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and the God of all comfort; who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are (and have been) comforted of God. For as Christs sufferings overflow to us (like a river swelling over till they reach us, so that we get these overflowings, Colossians 1:24), so our consolation also overflows through Christ. Whether, then, we are afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is accomplished in (or by) the patient endurance of the same sufferings as we ourselves suffer; or whether we are comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation. And our hope regarding you is steadfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so also shall ye be of the consolation. Here are several striking expressions worthy of being noted, such as, the God of all comfort; He comforteth us in all our tribulation; the comfort wherewith we are comforted of God, partakers (partners) of Christs sufferings; partakers (partners) of the consolation. On these, however, we do not dwell. Our cross is not the same as Christs, yet we have a cross. Our sufferings are not the same as Christs, yet we have sufferings. The cross is like Christs, and the sufferings are like His, but yet not the same in kind or object. Our cross is the shadow of His; our sufferings the overflowings of His. Yet there is a wide difference; for our trials have nothing to do with expiation. That was His work alone. He finished that on His cross when there by Himself He purged our sins, leaving no part of the sacrifice uncompleted. The sacrifice was finished on Calvary. There the blood was shed which reconciles, and purges, and saves. After that there remains only its acceptance by God, and its application to the sinner upon believing. But it is not of the likeness or unlikeness between our sufferings and those of Christ that we would speak, but simply of the meaning and use of trial. It needs to be interpreted to us, for often we misunderstand and pervert it. I. It shews God to be in earnest with us. He does not let us alone. He takes great pains with our spiritual education and training. He desires fruit and progress. Therefore He prunes His vines and chastens His sons. He is no careless Father. II. It assures us of His love. As many as I love I rebuke and chasten. This was said to Laodicea, the worst of the seven churches, of whom the Master has not one good word to speak, and of which we may affirm that, judging from appearances, it had became totally worldly. Yet to Laodicea God speaks of His love, and announces chastisement as a proof of His love to her! Truly many waters cannot quench love, nor can the floods drown it. III. It draws prayer to us. When one member suffers all the others suffer with it. As soon as it is said, such a brother or sister is in sorrow, all who hear of this begin to pray for the afflicted one. Thus sorrow becomes a magnet which attracts the prayers of the church. It is Gods prayer-bell, which whosoever heareth should immediately begin to plead for the sufferer. IV. It knits us in sympathy to the whole body. There is but one body, past, present, and to come, the church from the beginning. It has been an ailing body, a suffering church. Were we exempt from trial, we should be out of harmony with the body to which we belong. But when sorrow comes, we are made to feel communion with the whole body, and to know that we are part of a great community of sufferers of all ages. V. It teaches us sympathy with brethren. We cannot properly feel for others without having passed through sorrow. It is sorrow that creates or calls up the sympathetic feeling. Having tasted the cup, we know its bitterness, and feel for those who are called to drink it. Having known the cross, and the sharpness of its nails, we sympathize with them on whom we see it laid, and whose flesh we see pierced by the like nails that wounded ours. VI. It brings us into a mood more receptive of blessing. It makes our spirits tender; it softens our hearts; it makes our consciences alive; it empties us of adverse influences; it makes us willing to receive and to learn; it breaks our stubborn wills; it makes us say, Speak, Lord, for thy servant heareth. VII. It makes us prize the word. The Bible assumes a new aspect to us. All else darkens; but it brightens. It is like the sky at night when the stars appear, which were hidden by the day. How precious the word becomes! Each verse acquires new meaning; each promise sparkles with double light; each word of grace seems doubly gracious and suitable. VIII. It shuts out the world. It all at once draws a curtain round us, and the world becomes invisible. The fairest things of a fair world lose their fairness and become dim. We are alone with our sorrow, or rather alone with God. What is the world to a man whose soul is filled with a sorrow which the world cannot heal? IX. It bids us look up. Set your affection on things above. Look upwards now; the objects that drew your gaze downwards are vanishing away. Earth is fast becoming a blank; heaven is now all. You have nothing to expect here. All is vanity. Paradise and its dwellers are real and true. There is no sorrow there. X. It turns our hope to the Lords great coming. There is really nothing at any time worth caring for on this side the coming. But we often need sorrow to shew us this. Then when the trial comes we turn to that blessed hope, and find in it all we need for consolation, and strength, and glory. Comfort one another with these words. Horatius Bonar, Light & Truth: Bible Thoughts & Themes Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 24, 2012

Sunday··2012·06·10
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord! O Lord, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my pleas for mercy! If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? But with you there is forgiveness, that you may be feared. I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope; my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning. O Israel, hope in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with him is plentiful redemption. And he will redeem Israel from all his iniquities. Psalm 130 Petitionary Hymns Poem XLI. For Pardon. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Shouldst thou be strict to mark our faults, Who could acquitted be? Who, unrenewed, could stand the search, Or bear the scrutiny? Lord, at thy feet I meekly fall, Held in contritions chain: Thy gracious hand that cast me down, Shall raise me up again. O speak the word, thy servant hears, Pronounce me pardond now: Lord, I believe, increase my faith, And let me know thee too. Thou only, Saviour, hast the key, Unlock the prison door! Tho yet I cannot fly to thee, Ill send my heart before. The blood of sprinkling now apply, And that shall make me clean; Weigh not my worthless works, O Lord, But O forgive my sin! Take now away whateer obstructs Thine intercourse with me: And may I cheerfully leave all I have, to follow thee! The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 31, 2012

Sunday··2012·07·29
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation. Romans 5:611 Petitionary Hymns Poem XLII. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Jesus, thy powr I fain would feel, Thy love is all I want: O let thine ears consider well The voice of my complaint. Thou seest me yet a slave to sin, And destitute of God; O purify and make me clean By thine all-cleansing blood. Far off I stand, O bring me nigh, And bid me sit up highr: Immanuel, now in love pass by, And answer my desire. Jesus, undertake for me, Thy peace to me be givn: For while I stand away from thee, I stand away from heavn. I will not my offence conceal, I will not hide my sin, But all my crimes with weeping tell. And own how vile Ive been. Lord, will thy wrathful jealousy As fire for ever burn? And wilt thou not a succour be, And comfort those that mourn? Reject not Lord my humble prayrs, Nor yet my soul destroy: Thine only Son hath sown in tears That I might reap in joy. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 38, 2012

Sunday··2012·09·16
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. Ephesians 2:89 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn I. Praise for Conversion. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Not to myself I owe That I, O Lord, am thine, Free grace hath all the shades broke through, And caused the light to shine. Me thou hast willing made Thy offers to receive; Calld by the voice that wakes the dead, I come to thee and live.Why am I made to see, Who am by nature blind? Why am I taken home to thee, And others left behind? Because thy sovreign love Was bent the worst to save; Jesus, who reigns enthrond above, The free salvation gave. Tho once far off I stood, Nor knew myself thy foe, Brought nigh by the Redeemers blood, Myself and thee I know: No more a child of wrath Thy smiling face I see; And praise thee for the work of faith Which thou hast wrought in me.With me thy Spirit strove, Almighty to retrieve; Thou sawst me in a time of love, And said unto me, live. By thee made free indeed, I felt thy gracious words; Thy mantle over me was spread, And I became the Lords: Jesus, thy son, by grace, I to the end shall be; Made perfect through thy comeliness Which I receivd from thee. I drink the living stream To all believers givn, A fellow citizen with them, Who dwell in yonder heavn. With all thy chosen band I trust to see thee there, And, in thy righteousness, to stand Undaunted at thy bar. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 45, 2012

Sunday··2012·11·04
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge. There is no speech, nor are there words, whose voice is not heard. Their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them he has set a tent for the sun, which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber, and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy. Its rising is from the end of the heavens, and its circuit to the end of them, and there is nothing hidden from its heat. Psalm 19:16 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn II. The Heavens declare the Glory of God. Augustus Toplady (17401778) The skys a veil, the outward scene Proclaims the majesty within; Which boundless light, tho hid behind, Breaks out too great to be confind. The heavn thy glorious impress wears, Thy image glitters in the stars: The firmament, thine high abode, Seems too the spangled robe of God. Wheneer its beauty I admire, Its radiant globes direct me highr, In silent praise they point to thee, All light, all eye, all majesty! Glory to him who studs the sky, (Earths variegated canopy) With lamps to guide us on our way, Faint emblems of eternal day. Yes, Lord, each shining orb declares Thy name in dazzling characters; As precious gems they dart their rays, And seem to form a crown of praise. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 53, 2012

Sunday··2012·12·30
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works. Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me; otherwise believe because of the works themselves. Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father. Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it. If you love Me, you will keep My commandments. I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you. John 14:1017 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn IV. To the Trinity. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Glorious union, God unsought; Three in name and one in thought, All thy works thy goodness show, Center of perfection thou! Praise we, with uplifted eyes, Him that dwells above the skies: God who reigns on Sions hill, Made, redeemd, and keeps us still. Join th angelic hosts above Praise the Fathers matchless love, Who for us his Son hath givn, Sent him to regain our heavn. Glory to the Saviours grace, Help of Adams helpless race; Who, for our transgressions slain, Makes us one with God again. Next the Holy Ghost we bless; He makes known and seals our peace, Us he cleanses and makes whole, Quickens evry dying soul. Holy, blessed, glorious Three, One from all eternity, Make us vessels of thy grace, Ever running oer with praise. Thee we laud with grateful song, Severd from the guilty throng, Ransomd by the Son who dyd. By the Spirit sanctified. All the persons join to raise, Sinners to a state of grace; All unite their bliss t insure, In the glorious work concur. O that we his love might taste! Bless us and we shall be blest. Cleanse us, Lord, from sins abuse, Fit us for the masters use! In our hearts, thy temples dwell: With the hope of glory fill: Be on earth our guest divine, Then let heavn make us thine. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 7, 2013

Sunday··2013·02·17
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. for in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, for we also are His children. Acts 17:28 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn V. Another. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Father, Creator of mankind, Thee we attempt to sing; With thy Son and Spirit joind, Our everlasting king; Us thou dost in Christ receive, Clothd with Christ we come to thee: Him thou didst for sinners give Their substitute to be. All our sins, dear Lamb of God, Are for thy sake forgivn, Jesus, thy restoring blood Entitles men to heavn : Self-existent, Lord of all, Uncreate, with God the same, Bought by thee on thee we call, Exulting in thy name. Spirit of Jehovah write Thy nature on our heart, Us unto the Lord unite, As thou united art; Make us meet his face to see, Jesus righteousness apply: Holy Ghost, our leader be, And guide us to the sky. Three in One, before thy feet Our inmost souls we bend, Glorious mystery, too great For worms to comprehend: We can neer, on this side death, Bring the Deity to light; Reason here must yield to faith, Till faith is lost in sight. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 13, 2013

Sunday··2013·03·31
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. And coming to Him as to a living stone which has been rejected by men, but is choice and precious in the sight of God, you also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For this is contained in Scripture: Behold, I lay in Zion a choice stone, a precious corner stone, And he who believes in Him will not be disappointed. This precious value, then, is for you who believe; but for those who disbelieve, The stone which the builders rejected, This became the very corner stone, and, A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense; for they stumble because they are disobedient to the word, and to this doom they were also appointed. 1 Peter 2: 48 (cf. Psalm 118:22; Matthew 21:42; Mark 12:10; Luke 20:17; Acts 4:11) Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn VI. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Jesus, thou tried Foundation Stone, From whose prevailing Blood alone Thy Saints expect salvation, My robe thou art, I feel thy Grace, And triumph in thy righteousness Made mine by Imputation. Exulting in thy strength I go, My allotted work rejoice to do, For love divine constrains me: Supported inwardly by this, Through evry obstacle I press While thy great arm sustains me. By thy free grace till now upheld, My future hopes on thee I build, Nor are my hopes ill-grounded: Thy promises are on my side, And safe to glory, lo! I ride, By countless deaths surrounded. Before I from the body fly, He who forgave shall sanctify And perfectly renew me; Stronger than Satan Jesus is; Sin shall not always wound my peace, Nor finally subdue me. Who washd me from its deadly stain, Shall here cut short its guilty reign, And weaken its dominion; From height to height my faith shall rise, Until I gain my native skies On loves seraphic pinion. Unmovd, till then, on Christ I stand, And Satan from the Saviours hand In vain attempts to stir me: On Jesus I for Strength depend; My omnipotent, redeeming friend, Prepares my way before me. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lords Day 19, 2013

Sunday··2013·05·12
I was glad when they said to me, Let us go to the house of the Lord. After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches were in their hands; and they cry out with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb. And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures; and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, saying, Amen, blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be to our God forever and ever. Amen. Revelation 7:912 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn VII. Augustus Toplady (17401778) Praise the Lord, my joyful heart. With the elders bear thy part: Stand with them around the throne, Singing praises to the Son. Strive with them in rapture lost. Who shall laud the Saviour most: Join with angels to proclaim All the mercies of the Lamb. Praise his great humility, Long as life remains in thee; By thy prayrs and praises given, Make on earth a little heavn. Jesus, I the theme renew, Endless praises are thy due: Anthems equal to thy grace, Saints and angels cannot raise. I my worthless mite cast in, Here the song of heavn begin: I th eternal chorus join. Ecchoing the love divine. Ever may I worship thee, Praise my sole employment be; Sing the virtues of thy blood! Every moment thank my God. The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 25, 2013

Sunday··2013·06·23
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” From you comes my praise in the great congregation; my vows I will perform before those who fear him. —Psalm 22:25 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn VIII. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) My soul with blessing unconfin’d Thy tender care supplies; Thyself the fountain head from whence Those blessings first arise. Let me thy gracious gifts receive With gratitude and joy, And in thy just and ceaseless praise, Each thankful hour employ! —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987).

Lord’s Day 31, 2013

Sunday··2013·08·04
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him. —Romans 8:16–17 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn IX. Rom. viii. 16. The Spirit itself bears Witness with our Spirit that we are the Children of Grace. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Earnest of future bliss, Celestial Spirit, hail; Fountain of holiness, Whose comforts never fail, The cleansing gift on saints bestow’d, The witness of their peace with God. With our perverseness here, How often hast thou strove, And spar’d us year by year, With never-ceasing love! O set from sin our spirits free, And make us more like thee. What wondrous grace is this, For God to dwell with men; Through Jesus’ righteousness, His favour we regain. And feeble worms, by nature lost, Are temples of the Holy Ghost! Tho’ Belial’s sons would prove That thou no Witness art, Thanks to redeeming love, We feel thee in our heart; Continue, gracious Lord, to bear Thine inward testimony there! By Thee, on earth, we know Ourselves in Christ renew’d, Brought by thy grace into The family of God: Of his adopting love the seal, And faithful teacher of his will. Great Comforter, descend, In gentle breathings, down, Preserve us to the end, That no man take our crown: Our guardian still vouchsafe to be And ever keep us near to Thee. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 37, 2013

Sunday··2013·09·15
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone, A costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed. He who believes in it will not be disturbed. —Isaiah 28:16 (cf. Romans 9:33; 10:11; 1 Peter 2:6; Psalm 118:22; Isaiah 8:14–15; Matthew 21:42; Mark 12:10; Luke 20:17; Acts 4:11; Ephesians 2:20) Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn X. Thanksgiving for the divine faithfulness. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Immoveable our hope remains, Within the veil our anchor lies; Jesus, who wash’d us from our stains. Shall bear us safely to the skies. Strong in his strength, we boldly say. For us Immanuel shed his blood; Who then shall tear our shield away. Or part us from the love of God? Can tribulation or distress, Or persecution’s fiery sword? Can Satan rob us of our peace, Or prove too mighty for the Lord? Founded on Christ, secure we stand, Sealed with his Spirit’s inward seal; We soon shall gain the promis’d land. Triumphant o’er the pow’rs of hell. The winds may roar, the floods may beat; And rain impetuous descend; Yet will he not his own forget, But love and save them to the end. Jesus acquits, and who condemns? Cease, Satan, from thy fruitless strife: Thy malice cannot reach our names, To blot them from the book of life. This is eternal life to know, God and the Lamb for sinners giv’n, Nor will the Saviour let us go, His ransom’d citizens of heav’n. Us to redeem his life he paid, And will he not his purchase have? Who can behold Immanuel bleed, And doubt his willingness to save? Surely the son hath made us free, Who earth and heav’n and hell commands; Our cause of triumph this—that we Are graven on the Saviour’s hands. To Him who washed us in his blood. And lifts apostate man to heav’n, Who reconciles his sheep to God, Be everlasting glory giv’n. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 43, 2013

Sunday··2013·10·27
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” . . . Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant. The former priests, on the one hand, existed in greater numbers because they were prevented by death from continuing, but Jesus, on the other hand, because He continues forever, holds His priesthood permanently. Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them. —Hebrews 7:22–25 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn XII. Thanksgiving for general Mercies. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Gracious Creator, thy kind hand In all thy works I see; Resistless pow’r and mildest love Are blended, Lord, in thee. When thou art wrath and hid’st thy face, The whole creation mourns; Thou art the attractive pole to which Thy ransom’d people turns. O let my heart be wholly thine. Thy property alone! No longer let me think it mine. Or call myself my own! Without reserve I quit the claim, And give up all to thee, For thou, my all-sufficient Lord, Art more than all to me. Only do thou refine my dross, And cleanse me with thy blood, To make th’ imperfect sacrifice Acceptable to God. Nor shall I fear, if Jesus pleads, Unworthy as I am, Being excluded from the feast And supper of the Lamb. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 49, 2013

Sunday··2013·12·08 · 1 Comments
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” I will rejoice greatly in the Lord, My soul will exult in my God; For He has clothed me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness, As a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. —Isaiah 61:10 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn XIII. Thanksgiving for the Righteousness of Christ. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Fountain of never-ceasing grace, Thy saints’ exhaustless theme, Great object of immortal praise, Essentially supreme; We bless thee for the glorious fruits Thy incarnation gives; The righteousness which grace imputes, And faith alone receives. Whom heaven’s angelic host adores, Was slaughter’d for our sin; The guilt, O Lord, was wholly ours, The punishment was thine: Our God in flesh, to set us free, Was manifested here; And meekly bare our sins, that we His righteousness might wear. Imputatively guilty then Our substitute was made, That we the blessings might obtain For which his blood was shed: Himself he offer’d on the cross. Our sorrows to remove; And all he suffer’d was for us, And all he did was love. In him we have a righteousness, By God himself approv’d Our rock, our sure foundation this, Which never can be mov’d. Our ransom by his death he paid, For all his people giv’n, The law he perfectly obey’d, That they might enter heav’n. As all, when Adam sinn’d alone, In his transgression died, So by the righteousness of one, Are sinners justify’d, We to thy merit, gracious Lord, With humblest joy submit, Again to Paradise restor’d, In thee alone complete. Our souls his watchful love retrieves. Nor lets them go astray, His righteousness to us he gives, And takes our sins away: We claim salvation in his right, Adopted and forgiv’n, His merit is our robe of light, His death the gate of heav’n. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 51, 2013

Sunday··2013·12·22
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. —Philippians 2:6–8 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn XI. On the Birth of Christ. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Amplest grace in thee I find, Friend and Saviour of mankind, Richest merit to atone For our sins before the throne. Born to save thy church from hell, Once thou didst with sinners dwell; Was to earth a prophet giv’n, Now our Advocate in heaven. Well might wond’ring angels cry, “Glory be to God on high, Peace on earth, good will to men, Lost mankind is found again.” Join, my soul, their holy song, Emulate the brighter throng, Hail the everlasting word, Welcome thy descending Lord? Grace unequall’d! Love unknown! Jesus lays aside his crown, Clothes himself with flesh and blood, Takes the manhood into God. Harden’d rebels tho’ we are, Lo, he comes to sojourn here: See him lie where oxen feed, This his chamber, hay his bed! God (O hear it with surprise!) For a manger leaves the skies. By assuming flesh beneath, Render’d capable of death. From their Maker turn’d aside, As in Adam all have died, So whoe’er his grace receive, Shall in Christ be made alive. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 5, 2014

Sunday··2014·02·02
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Then Aaron shall lay both of his hands on the head of the live goat, and confess over it all the iniquities of the sons of Israel and all their transgressions in regard to all their sins; and he shall lay them on the head of the goat and send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a man who stands in readiness. The goat shall bear on itself all their iniquities to a solitary land; and he shall release the goat in the wilderness. —Leviticus 16:21–22 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn XIV. Thanksgiving for the Suffering of Christ. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) O thou who didst thy glory leave Apostate sinners to retrieve From nature’s deadly fall; He thou hast purchased with a price, Nor shall my crimes in judgment rise, For thou hast borne them all. Jesus was punished in my stead, Without the gate my Surety bled, To expiate my stain; On earth the Godhead deign’d to dwell, And made of infinite avail, The suff’rings of the man. And was he for his rebels giv’n? He was: th’ incarnate King of heav’n Did for his foes expire; Amaz’d, O earth, the tidings hear— He bore, that we might never bear, His Father’s righteous ire. Ye saints, the man of sorrows bless, The God for your unrighteousness Deputed to atone: Praise him till, with the heav’nly throng, Ye sing the never-ending song, And see him on his throne. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 11, 2014

Sunday··2014·03·16
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” I will give thanks to the Lord with all my heart; I will tell of all Your wonders. I will be glad and exult in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High. —Psalm 9:1–2 Hymns of Thanksgiving Hymn XV. The General Thanksgiving in the Liturgy paraphrased. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Eternal God, the thanks receive, Which thine unworthy servants give; Father of ev’ry mercy thou, Almighty and all gracious too! In humble yet exulting songs, Thy praises issue from our tongues, For that incessant boundless love, Which we and all thy creatures prove. Fashion’d by thy creating hand, And by thy providence sustain’d, We wish our gratitude to shew, For all thy temporal blessings due. But O! for this we chiefly raise The incense of admiring praise— Thy love unspeakably we own Which sent the willing Saviour down. For him, of all thy gifts the best, Th’ exceeding gift which crowns the rest, Chiefly for him thy name we laud, And thank thee for a bleeding God. Nor should we fail our Lord to praise, For all the assisting means of grace; Th’ appointed channels which convey Strength to support us on our way. To thee let all our thanks be giv’n, For our well-grounded hope of heav’n, Our glorious trust, that we shall reign And live with him who died for man. And O! so deep a sense impress Of thy supreme, unbounded grace, That anthems in full choir may rise, And shake the earth and rend the skies Make us in deed, as well as word, Shew forth the praises of the Lord, And thank him still for what he gives Both with our lips, and in our lives! O that, by sin no more subdu’d. We might devote ourselves to God, And only breathe to tell his praise, And in his service spend our daysl Hail, Father! Hail, eternal Son! Hail, sacred Spirit, Three in One! Blessing and thanks, and pow’r divine. Thrice, holy Lord, be ever thine! —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 18, 2014

Sunday··2014·05·04
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord from the heavens; Praise Him in the heights! Praise Him, all His angels; Praise Him, all His hosts! Praise Him, sun and moon; Praise Him, all stars of light! Praise Him, highest heavens, And the waters that are above the heavens! Let them praise the name of the Lord, For He commanded and they were created. He has also established them forever and ever; He has made a decree which will not pass away. Praise the Lord from the earth, Sea monsters and all deeps; Fire and hail, snow and clouds; Stormy wind, fulfilling His word; Mountains and all hills; Fruit trees and all cedars; Beasts and all cattle; Creeping things and winged fowl; Kings of the earth and all peoples; Princes and all judges of the earth; Both young men and virgins; Old men and children. Let them praise the name of the Lord, For His name alone is exalted; His glory is above earth and heaven. And He has lifted up a horn for His people, Praise for all His godly ones; Even for the sons of Israel, a people near to Him. Praise the Lord! —Psalm 148 Paraphrases on Select Parts of Holy Writ Para. I. Psalm CXLVIII. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Gen’ral praise to God be giv’n; Praise him in the height of heav’n: Him, ye glorious hosts, proclaim, Saints and angels, bless his name! Sun his lofty praise display, His who made thee king of day: Moon, adore the God of light, God, who made thee queen of night. Stars, your tribute too be giv’n, Spangles in the robe of heaven: God, your awful sovereign own, Bright forerunner of the morn. Praise, thou curtain of the sky, (Hiding heav’n from mortal eye) Him that spreads thy wat’ry clouds. Celebrate the God of gods. Highest heav’n, his dwelling flace, Lift thy voice, resound his praise. Hymn “the dweller ev’ry where,” Present more supremely there. Sun, and moon, and stars, and light, Heav’n and sky, and clouds unite: Verbal creatures of the Lord, Swift existing at his word. ’Stablish’d firm by his command, Lo, immoveable we stand; Him, th’ ineffable adore, Own his regulating pow’r. Womb and sepulchre of man, Join, O earth, the grateful train: Praise, ’till in the last great fire, Thou and all thy works expire. Ocean, with thy numerous brood, Swell to magnify thy God: Roll his praise from shore to shore, Lift his name and sound his pow’r. Praise him, fire, and hail, and snow, Praise him, all ye winds that blow: Cold and heat—let each extreme Join to render praise to him. Storms dispensing waste and death, Dreadful messengers of wrath; Spread his fear and praise abroad, Weapons of an angry God. Mountains, vales, and hills, and trees, Tell how good your Maker is; His exalted praise declare, Feather’d songsters of the air. Beasts of prey, where’er ye prowl, Join to make the concert full: Cattle, low Jehovah’s fame; Meanest insects do the same. Kings and people, rich and poor, Celebrate creating pow’r; Who are ransom’d by the Lamb, Join to praise the great I Am. Female, male, of every age, From the suckling to the sage, All conspire with one accord, Chaunt the glories of the Lord. Worthy praise can ne’er be giv’n, ’Till his saints arrive at heav’n, There, with all the glorious ones. Sing his praise and cast their crowns. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 24, 2014

Sunday··2014·06·15
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross,despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. —Hebrews 12:2 Paraphrases on Select Parts of Holy Writ Para. I. Names of Christ, expressive of his Offices, taken from various parts of Scripture. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Low at thy feet, O Christ, we fall, Enabled to confess, And call thee by the Holy Ghost, The Lord our Righteousness. God over all Immanuel reigns, With his great Father one: The brightness of his glory thou, And partner of his throne. Author and Finisher of faith, In all that know thy name, A lion to thy stubborn foes, But to thy friends a lamb. Sceptre of Israel, Prince of peace, Immortal King of kings: The Sun of Righteousness, that shines With healing in his wings. The gift of God to fallen man, The Lord of quick and dead: A well of life to fainting souls. And their sustaining bread. Foundation of thy people’s joy, Their pardon and their rest: On earth our sacrifice for sin, In heav’n our great High Priest. The Lord of life who suffer’d death That we might heav’n regain; The source of blessing, who on earth. Was made a curse for man. Was poor that Adam’s needy sons Treasure in thee might find; Repairer of the dreadful breach, Restorer of mankind. Through thy desert a fallen race To God may gain access; With thy fine linen deck our souls. Thy perfect righteousness. With that celestial robe endued, We ev’ry foe defy; On earth it shall our armour be, Our glory in the sky. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 36, 2014

Sunday··2014·09·07
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble! May the name of the God of Jacob set you securely on high! May He send you help from the sanctuary And support you from Zion! May He remember all your meal offerings And find your burnt offering acceptable! Selah. May He grant you your heart’s desire And fulfill all your counsel! We will sing for joy over your victory, And in the name of our God we will set up our banners. May the Lord fulfill all your petitions. Now I know that the Lord saves His anointed; He will answer him from His holy heaven With the saving strength of His right hand. Some boast in chariots and some in horses, But we will boast in the name of the Lord, our God. They have bowed down and fallen, But we have risen and stood upright. Save, O Lord; May the King answer us in the day we call. —Psalm 20 Paraphrases on Select Parts of Holy Writ Para. IV. The xxth Psalm. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Belov’d of God, may Jesus hear The ardent breathings of thy pray’r, And cancel thy transgressions; Be with thee in affliction’s day, Redeem thee from thy fears, and say Amen to thy petitions! Thy ev’ry need he will supply; His saints shall surely find him nigh, The God whom they rely on; He will not turn away his face, But save thee from his holy place, And send thee help from Sion. Thy feeblest pray’r shall reach his throne, Thy ev’ry pang is noted down, And thou shall be forgiv’n; He loves thee, troubled as thou art; And all the pantings of thy heart Are treasured up in heav’n. God is our triumph in distress; His children’s privilege it is To smile at tribulation: Jesus, to thee we lift our voice, By grace enabled to rejoice, In hope of thy salvation. Ready to hear, O Lord, thou art, Mighty to take thy people’s part, And help them in affliction: Creation kneels to thy command, The saving strength of thy right hand, Shall be our sure protection. In chariots some repose their trust, Of horses others make their boast, But we in God are stronger: Who on the arm of flesh rely, Trembling before our face shall fly When we shall more than conquer. Still may the palm to us be giv’n, Thy saints, O mighty King of heav’n. Continue to deliver: Support us with thy strength’ning grace, ’Till we, in yon celestial place, Sit down with thee for ever. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 2, 2016

Sunday··2016·01·10
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Hear this word, you cows of Bashan who are on the mountain of Samaria, Who oppress the poor, who crush the needy, Who say to your husbands, “Bring now, that we may drink!” The Lord God has sworn by His holiness, “Behold, the days are coming upon you When they will take you away with meat hooks, And the last of you with fish hooks. “You will go out through breaches in the walls, Each one straight before her, And you will be cast to Harmon,” declares the Lord. “Enter Bethel and transgress; In Gilgal multiply transgression! Bring your sacrifices every morning, Your tithes every three days. “Offer a thank offering also from that which is leavened, And proclaim freewill offerings, make them known. For so you love to do, you sons of Israel,” Declares the Lord God. “But I gave you also cleanness of teeth in all your cities And lack of bread in all your places, Yet you have not returned to Me,” declares the Lord. “Furthermore, I withheld the rain from you While there were still three months until harvest. Then I would send rain on one city And on another city I would not send rain; One part would be rained on, While the part not rained on would dry up. “So two or three cities would stagger to another city to drink water, But would not be satisfied; Yet you have not returned to Me,” declares the Lord. “I smote you with scorching wind and mildew; And the caterpillar was devouring Your many gardens and vineyards, fig trees and olive trees; Yet you have not returned to Me,” declares the Lord. “I sent a plague among you after the manner of Egypt; I slew your young men by the sword along with your captured horses, And I made the stench of your camp rise up in your nostrils; Yet you have not returned to Me,” declares the Lord. “I overthrew you, as God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah, And you were like a firebrand snatched from a blaze; Yet you have not returned to Me,” declares the Lord. “Therefore thus I will do to you, O Israel; Because I will do this to you, Prepare to meet your God, O Israel.” For behold, He who forms mountains and creates the wind And declares to man what are His thoughts, He who makes dawn into darkness And treads on the high places of the earth, The Lord God of hosts is His name. —Amos 4 Paraphrases on Select Parts of Holy Writ Para. VIII. The ivth Chapter of Amos. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Ye Kine of Bashan, who devour The needy, and oppress the poor, Who drown in wine your ev’ry sense, And drink the spoil of violence, God by his holiness hath sworn (The awful God whose law ye scorn) Your foes, whom more than him ye dread. Your destined borders shall invade. The Lord hath ratify’d your doom, Yourselves and yours he will consume. Aliens his instrument shall be To scourge your vile idolatry. Your stately buildings then shall fall; His vengeance shall destroy them all. Your palaces shall be a prey, And stalls for oxen in that day. Shall guilty hands and wanton eyes Be lifted up in sacrifice? Cease to transgress, and then my ear Shall meet the incense of your pray’r. In vain my judgments are abroad, Tokens of an offended God; Nor wrath nor mercies can prevail, Nor love of heav’n, nor fear of hell. I gave you in your greatest need, Cleanness of teeth through want of bread; Each face was pale, and weak each knee, Yet have ye not returned to me. Have I not marr’d the rip’ning grain With scorching heat and want of rain? And frustrated your rising hopes, By wither’d trees and blasted crops? Your water fail’d, your wells were dry. Your thirst ye could not satisfy; Your fainting cities yet sinned on, And drew my fiercer judgments down. Your figs and olive trees I smote, Your vineyards I consumed with drought; Mildew and palmer-worms bereft The earth of what the drought had left. Contagious sickness next I sent: (Infatuate Egypt’s punishment) My fury next in blood I pour’d, And gave your children to the sword. Horses (the ruin who can tell?) Promiscuous with their riders fell: Caus’d by their stench, the infectious air Increas’d the havoc of the war. Obdurate, still, ye felt mine ire Reveal’d from heav’n in flames of re; The blazing ruin swept away Men, towns and cities in a day: Hear then the message of the Lord, The awful thunder of his word: Since all my judgments strive in vain. To kindle fear in stubborn man, Myself in judgment shall appear, And call thee, Israel, to my bar: As harden’d Pharaoh, blind and proud, Prepare to meet thy hostile God. Prepare to meet your dreadful foe, Omniscient and Almighty too; Whose terrors heaven and earth proclaim, The God of glory is his name. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. 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Lord’s Day 8, 2016

Sunday··2016·02·21
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Shin. Princes persecute me without cause, But my heart stands in awe of Your words. I rejoice at Your word, As one who finds great spoil. I hate and despise falsehood, But I love Your law. Seven times a day I praise You, Because of Your righteous ordinances. Those who love Your law have great peace, And nothing causes them to stumble. I hope for Your salvation, O Lord, And do Your commandments. My soul keeps Your testimonies, And I love them exceedingly. I keep Your precepts and Your testimonies, For all my ways are before You. Tav. Let my cry come before You, O Lord; Give me understanding according to Your word. —Psalm 119:161–169 Paraphrases on Select Parts of Holy Writ Para. IX. Psalm cxix. Verses 161–164, &c. to the 169th. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Princes have persecuted me, But, Lord, my trust is still in thee; Me from my hope they sought to move But could not stir me from thy love. I fly for refuge to my Lord, For comfort to his healing word: From Saul my safe retreat he is, And all the troublers of my peace. Each passing hour displays his care; He saves me from the latent snare: His love with wonder I survey, And praise him seven times a day. Jesus, my mind from earth withdraw Great peace have they that love thy law: No precept there which thou hast giv’n Is hard to them who strive for heav’n. I too have look’d thy health to see, And taste the peace that comes from thee: Each inward lust have strove to kill, And walk in all thy perfect will. My soul hath lov’d thy ways and thee, Thy word is life and health to me Exceedingly thy word I prize, The fund where heavenly treasure lies. Thy testimonies are my food, The saving oracles of God: Studious of them on earth I’ll be, And then fly up to reign with thee. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 15, 2016

Sunday··2016·04·03
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” For behold, the Lord God of hosts is going to remove from Jerusalem and Judah Both supply and support, the whole supply of bread And the whole supply of water; The mighty man and the warrior, The judge and the prophet, The diviner and the elder, The captain of fifty and the honorable man, The counselor and the expert artisan, And the skillful enchanter. And I will make mere lads their princes, And capricious children will rule over them, And the people will be oppressed, Each one by another, and each one by his neighbor; The youth will storm against the elder And the inferior against the honorable. When a man lays hold of his brother in his father’s house, saying, “You have a cloak, you shall be our ruler, And these ruins will be under your charge,” He will protest on that day, saying, “I will not be your healer, For in my house there is neither bread nor cloak; You should not appoint me ruler of the people.” For Jerusalem has stumbled and Judah has fallen, Because their speech and their actions are against the Lord, To rebel against His glorious presence. The expression of their faces bears witness against them, And they display their sin like Sodom; They do not even conceal it. Woe to them! For they have brought evil on themselves. Say to the righteous that it will go well with them, For they will eat the fruit of their actions. Woe to the wicked! It will go badly with him, For what he deserves will be done to him. O My people! Their oppressors are children, And women rule over them. O My people! Those who guide you lead you astray And confuse the direction of your paths. The Lord arises to contend, And stands to judge the people. The Lord enters into judgment with the elders and princes of His people, “It is you who have devoured the vineyard; The plunder of the poor is in your houses. “What do you mean by crushing My people And grinding the face of the poor?” Declares the Lord God of hosts. —Isaiah 3:1–15 Paraphrases on Select Parts of Holy Writ Para. X. Salvation recovered for man by Jesus Christ. Isaiah iii. 1–3, 9–11, 15. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Zion, awake, put on thy strength, Resume thy beautiful array: The promis’d Saviour comes at length, To chase thy guilt and grief away: Thee for his purchase God shall own, And save thee by his dying Son. Jerusalem, be holy now, Satan no more shall dwell in thee; Wash’d from thy sin, and white as snow, Prepare thy God-made-man to see; Prepare Immanuel to behold And hear his peaceful message told. Shake off the dust, arise with speed, Too long hast thou a captive been; Redemption’s near, lift up thine head, And cast away the chains of sin; Forth from thy prison come, and shake The yoke of bondage from thy neck. Tho’ ye have sold yourselves for nought. And forfeited your claim to heaven, Accept the Saviour’s love unbought; Your treason now is all forgiv’n My blood the fallen race restores, And saves without desert of yours. Ye desert places, sing for joy; Lost man, your hymns of wonder raise; Let holy shouts invade the sky, And ev’ry altar flame with praise; For I, Almighty to redeem, Have comforted Jerusalem. My arm’s made bare for your defence, To save my Church from Satan’s power. Depart, depart, come out from thence, Defile yourselves with sin no more: Be pure, ye priests, who preach my word, And bear the vessels of the Lord. Look out and see Immanuel come, Myriads to sprinkle with his blood; He many nations shall bring home, And save them from the wrath of God: And earth’s remotest bounds shall see The great salvation wrought by me. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 5, 2017

Sunday··2017·01·29
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Those who trust in the Lord Are as Mount Zion, which cannot be moved but abides forever. As the mountains surround Jerusalem, So the Lord surrounds His people From this time forth and forever. For the scepter of wickedness shall not rest upon the land of the righteous, So that the righteous will not put forth their hands to do wrong. Do good, O Lord, to those who are good And to those who are upright in their hearts. But as for those who turn aside to their crooked ways, The Lord will lead them away with the doers of iniquity. Peace be upon Israel. —Psalm 125 Paraphrases on Select Parts of Holy Writ Para. XII. The cxxvth Psalm.Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Who, Lord, confide in thee, And in thy faith endure, Shall as Mount Sion be, Immoveable and sure: As Christ their rock, unshook, unmov’d; Of God eternally belov’d. The rising mountains stand Around Jerusalem; So God’s almighty hand, Guards us who trust in him: We never will of safety doubt, While he shall compass us about. Ye souls who stand in God, Whom Jesus’ blood hath bought, The guilty sinner’s rod Shall never be your lot: Ye shall not fall, upheld by grace, Nor put your hands to wickedness. The upright men in heart Jehovah will defend; Will not from them depart, But love them to the end: He will do well, O saints, to you, The Lord will never let you go. But such as will forsake The happy path of peace, Deceivers, that turn back To their own wickedness, The double wrath of God shall feel, And sink unpardon’d into hell. While they who hear his call, And plead a Saviour’s blood, Shall reign in joy with all The ransom’d ones of God Peace upon Israel shall come, To endless glory gather’d home. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 10, 2017

Sunday··2017·03·05
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. —Matthew 6:9–13 Paraphrases on Select Parts of Holy Writ Para. XIII. Matthew vi. 9–13. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Our holy Father, all thy will We fain would perfectly fulfil; But each has left thy law undone, Unworthy to be call’d thy Son. Who art in heaven, enthron’d on high Diffusing glory through the sky; Reigning above, on earth rever’d, By saints belov’d, by sinners fear’d. or ever hallow’d be thy name, The Triune God, the bright I Am; At which seraphic choirs and all The hosts of heaven adoring fall. Thy kingdom come; e’en now we wait Thy glory to participate: Rule in our hearts, unrivall’d reign, Nor e’er withdraw thyself again. Thy will, thy law, thy precept giv’n, Be done on earth, as ’tis in heaven: Faithful as Angels, fain would we With cover’d faces wait on thee. Great God, on whom the ravens cry For sustenance, our wants supply: Give us this day, and evermore, Our daily bread from hour to hour. Forgive whate’er we do amiss, Our wilful sins and trespasses, As we forgive (reward us thus) All them that trespass against us. And lead us not by bounty’s tide, Into temptation, lust or pride: But what by mercy we obtain. Let pow’r omnipotent restrain. And O! deliver us thine own From evil and the evil one, Who fain his darts in us would sheath, And bind us with the chains of death. Thou, Lord, can’st vanquish his design. Thine is the kingdom, only thine; The pow’r, th’ eternal majesty, And glory, appertain to thee! —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 16, 2017

Sunday··2017·04·16
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; My soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, In a dry and weary land where there is no water. Thus I have seen You in the sanctuary, To see Your power and Your glory. Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips will praise You. So I will bless You as long as I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name. My soul is satisfied as with marrow and fatness, And my mouth offers praises with joyful lips. When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches, For You have been my help, And in the shadow of Your wings I sing for joy. My soul clings to You; Your right hand upholds me. But those who seek my life to destroy it, Will go into the depths of the earth. They will be delivered over to the power of the sword; They will be a prey for foxes. But the king will rejoice in God; Everyone who swears by Him will glory, For the mouths of those who speak lies will be stopped. —Psalm 63 Paraphrases on Select Parts of Holy Writ Para. XIV. Psalm lxiii. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) O God, my God thou art, My Father too by grace; I dare not from my hope depart. Or cease to seek thy face: My thirsty spirit pants Thy plenitude to prove, And comprehend with all thy saints, The fulness of thy love. In this dry, barren land, Where water is not found, I fain would fly to thy right hand, Where living streams abound: Thee, thee, I long to know, Athirst for God I am, And come to thee as needy now As when at first I came. Thy glory and thy pow’r I long again to see, To have again, as heretofore, Sweet fellowship with thee; Again to feel thy peace, Again thy name to praise: Better than life thy favour is, To all that know thy grace. With persevering hope, Thy mercy I’ll proclaim, My hands in steady faith lift up, And magnify thy name. Thy praises I’ll reveal, ’Till I from earth remove, My mouth with joyful lips shall tell The wonders of thy love. Surely I reason have On thee, my God, to trust; My life thou liftest from the grave, My spirit from the dust: Thy grace and boundless might My theme by day shall be, My glory in the silent night, To meditate on thee. My succour thou hast been When ev’ry helper failed, Or I, ere now, had fell by sin, And Satan had prevail’d My soul, redeem’d from death. To thee her off’ring brings, And hides her helpless head beneath The covert of thy wings. Thou keep’st my steady feet In thy appointed road; By all the pow’rs of hell beset, I follow after God: In Jesus I am safe, My castle of resort; His hand is both my shield and staff. My shelter and support. The men who seek to tread Thy faithful people down, And persecute, in them, their Head, And crucify their Son, Thou, Lord, will surely foil In thy avenging day, And give their bodies for a spoil To ev’ry beast of prey. But me, and all who love Thy worship and thy ways, Thou far from danger wilt remove, And hide us in thy place: Who speak the words of truth, Thou, Lord, on them shall smile. But thou wilt stop the liar’s mouth, And slay the sons of guile. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Nothing in my hand I bring

Monday··2017·04·24
God alone is the standard of goodness. No honest person, understanding that fact, can claim to be good. No matter how good we try to be, next to God’s holy standard, “all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment” (Isaiah 64:6). The good news of the gospel is that God provides us with a perfect righteousness, which can be ours, through faith in Christ. For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law. —Romans 3:28 Nor is it necessary, in order to thy being released from guilt, and entitled to this high and complete felicity, that thou shouldst, before thou wilt venture to apply to Jesus, bring any good works of thine own to recommend thee to his acceptance. It is indeed true, that, if thy faith be sincere, it will certainly produce them; but I have the authority of the word of God to tell thee that if thou this day sincerely believest in the name of the Son of God, thou shalt this day be taken under his care, and be numbered among those of his sheep to whom he hath graciously declared that “he will give eternal life, and that they shall never perish, John x. 28.” Thou hast no need therefore to say, “Who shall go up into heaven, or who shall descend into the deep for me? For the word is nigh thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart, Rom. x. 6, 7, 8.” With this joyful message I leave thee; with this faithful saying, indeed “worthy of all acceptation; 1 Tim. i. 15.” with this Gospel, O sinner, which is my life; and which, if thou dost not reject, will be thine too. —Philip Doddridge, The Rise and Progress of Religion in the Soul (Robert Porter, 1810), 76. Not the labours of my hands, Can fulfil thy law’s demands: Could my zeal no respite know. Could my tears for ever flow; All for sin could not atone, Thou must save and thou alone. Nothing in my hand I bring, Simply to thy cross I cling; Naked come to thee for dress, Helpless, look to thee for grace: Foul I to the fountain fly, Wash me, Saviour, or I die. —Augustus Toplady

Lord’s Day 22, 2017

Sunday··2017·05·28
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Behold, I long for Your precepts; Revive me through Your righteousness. May Your lovingkindnesses also come to me, O Lord, Your salvation according to Your word; So I will have an answer for him who reproaches me, For I trust in Your word. And do not take the word of truth utterly out of my mouth, For I wait for Your ordinances. So I will keep Your law continually, Forever and ever. And I will walk at liberty, For I seek Your precepts. I will also speak of Your testimonies before kings And shall not be ashamed. I shall delight in Your commandments, Which I love. And I shall lift up my hands to Your commandments, Which I love; And I will meditate on Your statutes. Remember the word to Your servant, In which You have made me hope. —Psalm 119:40–49 Paraphrases on Select Parts of Holy Writ Para. XV. Psalm cxix. From the 40th Verse to the 49th. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Let thy loving mercy, Lord, Come also unto me; Now according to thy word, My present Saviour be: Unbelievers then no more Shall against my hope blaspheme; Forc’d to own, “The mighty pow’r Of God hath rescu’d him.” In thy word my trust I place, And humbly urge my claim, ’Till I of thy saving grace, A living witness am: Give me, Lord, thyself to know, Then in me thy word fulfil, To walk in all things here below, According to thy will. Seeking now in steadfast faith, I wait a word from thee; Bring my feet into the path Of perfect liberty; Then, when I the path have found, Un-asham’d thy truth I’ll shew: Kings shall hear the joyful sound, And seek salvation too. My delight is in thy word Which I have lov’d of old, Dearer is thy promise. Lord, To me than mines of gold: Up to thee my hands I lift, ’Till I of thy grace receive; Give the never changing gift, Thy full redemption give. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 29, 2017

Sunday··2017·07·16
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” For every high priest is appointed to offer both gifts and sacrifices; so it is necessary that this high priest also have something to offer. Now if He were on earth, He would not be a priest at all, since there are those who offer the gifts according to the Law; who serve a copy and shadow of the heavenly things, just as Moses was warned by God when he was about to erect the tabernacle; for, “See,” He says, “that you make all things according to the pattern which was shown you on the mountain.” But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, by as much as He is also the mediator of a better covenant, which has been enacted on better promises. —Hebrews 8:3–6 (cf. Colossians 2:16–17; Hebrews 10) I. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Look back, my soul, and take a view Of Christ expiring on the tree: Behold thy Saviour breathe his last To buy eternal life for thee! Thy Jesus faints,—’Tis finished, cries, Reclines his sacred head, and dies. Shadows and types are done away, The temple’s veil is rent in twain: Vanish, ye emblematic rights, The real victim now is slain; Is slain for sinners to atone, The priest and sacrifice in one. Methinks I see the purpled earth, Startle to feel its Maker’s blood; The sun retires, and from their graves, Saints rise to hail their dying Lord: Each sympathising rock appears More tender than his murderers. And did the Saviour thus exchange His throne of glory for a cross? Left he for this th’ ethereal court To die a painful death for us? For us he bled at ev’ry vein, And, slain by man, for man was slain. Obdurate heart, shall mountains heave. And nature mourn her best belov’d, Shall the rocks tremble at his voice, And I alone abide unmov’d! Shall I not weep his death to see, Who wept in tears of blood for me? O, Prince of martyrs, touch my heart. There at thy mighty standard rest; Burn purifying incense there, Fit it for so divine a guest: There let thy pow’rful cross reside, ’Till every lust is crucified. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady: An Appendix, Not Properly Reducible, etc. (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

Lord’s Day 37, 2017

Sunday··2017·09·10
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding, Who set its measurements? Since you know. Or who stretched the line on it? On what were its bases sunk? Or who laid its cornerstone, When the morning stars sang together And all the sons of God shouted for joy? —Job 38:4–7 II. To a friend who asked what God is. Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) Is there a man whose daring hand Can number ev’ry grain of sand? Can count the drops that fill the sea, Or tell how many stars there be? Who, then, shall strive to comprehend Infinity that knows no end? Who shall set bounds to boundless pow’r, Restrain omnipotence, or low’r Eternity to one poor hour? Believe me, friend, thou canst no more The vast designs of God explore Than thy short arm can touch the skies, Or fathom ocean’s deep abyss. Who shall disclose his Maker’s plan, Or dare his secret will to scan? Shall feeble, guilty, finite man? None but perfection, such as his, Can know th’ Almighty as he is; His glory never can be brought Adapted to a mortal’s thought. Consider what thou art, and fear This unseen witness always near. Dive not into his deep decree, The object’s too elate for thee; Thou must not ask, nor wish to see. Cast each presumptuous doubt away; Remember thou ’rt, at best, but clay, Whose only province is t’ obey. —The Complete Works of Augustus Toplady: An Appendix, Not Properly Reducible, etc. (Sprinkle Publications, 1987). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these. Tweets about "sermon from:thethirstytheo" !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+"://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");

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