The Good Shepherd Laid Down His life
“Jesus said unto them, If ye seek me, let these go their way.” John 18:8
Mark, my soul, the care which Jesus manifested even in his hour of trial, towards the sheep of his hand! The ruling passion is strong in death. He resigns himself to the enemy, but he interposes a word of power to set his disciples free. As to himself, like a sheep before her shearers he is dumb and opened not his mouth, but for his disciples’ sake he speaks with almighty energy. Herein is love, constant, self-forgetting, faithful love. But is there not far more here than is to be found upon the surface? Have we not the very soul and spirit of the atonement in these words? The Good Shepherd lays down his life for the sheep, and pleads that they must therefore go free. The Surety is bound, and justice demands that those for whom he stands a substitute should go their way. In the midst of Egypt’s bondage, that voice rings as a word of power, “Let these go their way.” Out of slavery of sin and Satan the redeemed must come. In every cell of the dungeons of Despair, the sound is echoed, “Let these go their way,” and forth come Despondency and Much-afraid. Satan hears the well-known voice, and lifts his foot from the neck of the fallen; and Death hears it, and the grave opens her gates to let the dead arise. Their way is one of progress, holiness, triumph, glory, and none shall dare to stay them in it. No lion shall be on their way, neither shall any ravenous beast go up thereon. “The hind of the morning” has drawn the cruel hunters upon himself, and now the most timid roes and hinds of the field may graze at perfect peace among the lilies of his loves. The thunder-cloud has burst over the Cross of Calvary, and the pilgrims of Zion shall never be smitten by the bolts of vengeance. Come, my heart, rejoice in the immunity which thy Redeemer has secured thee, and bless his name all the day, and every day.
The Reason for the Season
He was sold for silver-thirty
And then betrayed with a kiss
Jesus was just three and thirty.
You may say, ‘What is the point of this?’
The Lamb of God was crucified
That He would take away our sin,
He was maltreated, vilified
Because of my sin and your sin.
He died the death that we should die
To reconcile us to the Most High.
He removed the wall of partition
And closed the gap of separation.
Like a Lamb led to the slaughter
He went silently. Willingly
He did the will of the Father
And He did it well- excellently.
He satisfied God’s righteous demand
To make us the righteousness of God.
He suffered in the hands of a wicked band
All in fulfilment of the will and word of God.
But on the third day He arose
The cross could not stop Him
The grave could not hold Him
He rose so you and I may rise.
Now at the Father’s right hand
He intercedes for you and I.
So you and I can enter the Land
Let us press on and occupy.
He’s alive, He’s risen
He lives in those who believe
He has opened the door, the prison
For us to come alive and live.
That is the reason for the season.
Grow in Your Faith
“Ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:26
The fatherhood of God is common to all his children. Ah! Little-faith, you have often said, “Oh that I had the courage of Great-heart, that I could wield his sword and be as valiant as he! But, alas, I stumble at every straw, and a shadow makes me afraid.” List thee, Little-faith. Great-heart is God’s child, and you are God’s child too; and Great-heart is not one whit more God’s child than you are. Peter and Paul, the highly-favoured apostles, were of the family of the Most High; and so are you also; the weak Christian is as much a child of God as the strong one.
“This cov’nant stands secure,
Though earth’s old pillars bow;
The strong, the feeble, and the weak,
Are one in Jesus now.”
All the names are in the same family register. One may have more grace than another, but God our heavenly Father has the same tender heart towards all. One may do more mighty works, and may bring more glory to his Father, but he whose name is the least in the kingdom of heaven is as much the child of God as he who stands among the King’s mighty men. Let this cheer and comfort us, when we draw near to God and say, “Our Father.”
Yet, while we are comforted by knowing this, let us not rest contented with weak faith, but ask, like the Apostles, to have it increased. However feeble our faith may be, if it be real faith in Christ, we shall reach heaven at last, but we shall not honour our Master much on our pilgrimage, neither shall we abound in joy and peace. If then you would live to Christ’s glory, and be happy in his service, seek to be filled with the spirit of adoption more and more completely, till perfect love shall cast out fear.
His Blood Speaks Better Things
“His sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.” Luke 22:44
The mental pressure arising from our Lord’s struggle with temptation, so forced his frame to an unnatural excitement, that his pores sent forth great drops of blood which fell down to the ground. This proves how tremendous must have been the weight of sin when it was able to crush the Saviour so that he distilled great drops of blood! This demonstrates the mighty power of his love. It is a very pretty observation of old Isaac Ambrose that the gum which exudes from the tree without cutting is always the best. This precious camphire-tree yielded most sweet spices when it was wounded under the knotty whips, and when it was pierced by the nails on the cross; but see, it giveth forth its best spice when there is no whip, no nail, no wound. This sets forth the voluntariness of Christ’s sufferings, since without a lance the blood flowed freely. No need to put on the leech, or apply the knife; it flows spontaneously. No need for the rulers to cry, “Spring up, O well;” of itself it flows in crimson torrents. If men suffer great pain of mind apparently the blood rushes to the heart. The cheeks are pale; a fainting fit comes on; the blood has gone inward as if to nourish the inner man while passing through its trial. But see our Saviour in his agony; he is so utterly oblivious of self, that instead of his agony driving his blood to the heart to nourish himself, it drives it outward to bedew the earth. The agony of Christ, inasmuch as it pours him out upon the ground, pictures the fulness of the offering which he made for men.
Do we not perceive how intense must have been the wrestling through which he passed, and will we not hear its voice to us? “Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.” Behold the great Apostle and High Priest of our profession, and sweat even to blood rather than yield to the great tempter of your souls.
Don’t Give up.
Faith doesn’t give up!
Keep looking up
Press on. Do not stop.
Your boon is coming.
Your boom is coming
Your breakthrough is coming
See with the eyes of faith
See beyond the seen
See the glory coming
See your sea parting
For you to walk on dry ground.
You’re walking through
This valley of the shadow of death.
You will not die but live to
Declare God’s glory.
God is in you.
He is with you
And He is for you.
There are more with you
than are against you.
You are more than a conqueror.
You are an overcomer.
You are a winner.
Don’t Give up!
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the LORD
14 Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. 2Cor2:14
33 These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”
You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.1John4:4
4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world — our faith.1John5:4
But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.8 We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed -2Cor4:7-928 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?
37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come,39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.Ro8:28,31,32,37-39
Grace Always Available
“Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.” 2 Timothy 2:1
Christ has grace without measure in himself, but he hath not retained it for himself. As the reservoir empties itself into the pipes, so hath Christ emptied out his grace for his people. “Of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace.” He seems only to have in order to dispense to us. He stands like the fountain, always flowing, but only running in order to supply the empty pitchers and the thirsty lips which draw nigh unto it. Like a tree, he bears sweet fruit, not to hang on boughs, but to be gathered by those who need. Grace, whether its work be to pardon, to cleanse, to preserve, to strengthen, to enlighten, to quicken, or to restore, is ever to be had from him freely and without price; nor is there one form of the work of grace which he has not bestowed upon his people. As the blood of the body, though flowing from the heart, belongs equally to every member, so the influences of grace are the inheritance of every saint united to the Lamb; and herein there is a sweet communion between Christ and his Church, inasmuch as they both receive the same grace. Christ is the head upon which the oil is first poured; but the same oil runs to the very skirts of the garments, so that the meanest saint has an unction of the same costly moisture as that which fell upon the head. This is true communion when the sap of grace flows from the stem to the branch, and when it is perceived that the stem itself is sustained by the very nourishment which feeds the branch. As we day by day receive grace from Jesus, and more constantly recognize it as coming from him, we shall behold him in communion with us, and enjoy the felicity of communion with him. Let us make daily use of our riches, and ever repair to him as to our own Lord in covenant, taking from him the supply of all we need with as much boldness as men take money from their own purse.
“For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come.” (Hebrews 13:14 NLT, second edition)
When you hear talk about Heaven, does it ever occur to you that God designed Heaven for you? This is such an amazing thing! God designed the earth for us so it could sustain life and we could live here. But then he also designed Heaven for us, and he wants us to live there with him forever.
The Bible says in Matthew 25:34, “Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world” (NLT, second edition). From the very beginning, God knew that there would be more to life than just this life on Earth.
There’s more to life than just here and now. You’re going to spend 80 or so years on this planet, but you can spend eternity — trillions and trillions and trillions of years — living in Heaven with God.
Ephesians 1:10 says, “This was his purpose: that when the time is ripe he will gather us all together from wherever we are — in heaven or on earth — to be with him in Christ forever” (TLB).
You were made to last forever. The question is, where will you last forever: Heaven or Hell?
You get to choose which door you go through at the end of your life. Hebrews 13:14 says, “For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come” (NLT, second edition). Once you become a part of God’s family, there’s a whole lot more to life than just here and now.
If you were to drop dead later today, are you absolutely certain you would go to Heaven? If you’re not, you can make sure right now. Why put it off? You need to settle this issue, and you need to put your trust in God’s plan for your salvation. You need to accept his free gift of eternal life.
Pray this prayer today if you are ready to invite Jesus Christ into your life as your Lord and Savior:
“Dear God, you are God, and I’m not. I admit it. I’m humbling myself, and I’m letting go of my pride. I know that I could never be good enough. I know that I’ve sinned and I need a Savior to get into Heaven. Thank you, God, that you loved the world so much that you gave your Son, Jesus, so that I could spend eternity with you by believing in you and making you Lord of my life.
“Jesus, I believe that you died for me. I want to change. I want to repent. Today, I commit myself completely to you. I commit to follow you, trust you, serve you, know you, and love you. I’m going to depend on your promise that whoever believes in you will not perish but have everlasting life. I trust you for my salvation. Thank you for dying for me, and thank you for loving me. I pray this in your name, Jesus. Amen.
I Won the Lottery
I won the lottery
It came like a wind-
Wind of the Spirit.
It took me from behind
Made my feet like the hind’s
Placed me in my purpose
And this, regardless of the foes.
I won the lottery-
More than millions
More than billions
Even more than zillions-
Made God’s champion.
I won the lottery
To last for infinity
Bestowed abundant life-
Zoe- God-kind of life;
Given reason for being
More than eyes have seen
More than ears have heard
More than mouth can tell
Delivered from the power of hell;
Delivered from condemnation
Saved from damnation.
You too can win this lottery
And your blindness will be history
Your darkness will be history.
But the choice is yours.
Decisions determine destiny.
Choices carry consequences.
Today if you hear His voice,
Do not harden your heart.
This is the acceptable time.
This is the Day of Salvation.
44 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.
45 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls,46 who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.
9 But as it is written:
” Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
23 Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.24 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.25 For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost? Luke 9
3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”John3:3
I am God
1 The heavens declare the glory of God;
And the firmament shows His handiwork.
2 Day unto day utters speech,
And night unto night reveals knowledge.
3 There is no speech nor language
Where their voice is not heard.
4 Their line has gone out through all the earth,
And their words to the end of the world.
In them He has set a tabernacle for the sun,
5 Which is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber,
And rejoices like a strong man to run its race.
6 Its rising is from one end of heaven,
And its circuit to the other end;
And there is nothing hidden from its heat.