Not Following the Joneses (by Fenny West)

Not Following the Joneses

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Not Following the Joneses
but following the Lord;
Not following the world,
but following the Word.
Not following your feelings
but following the Spirit’s leading.

Not following the facts
but following faith in God,
Following the truth.
Not following the seen

which is transient and temporal,
but following that which is unseen

and supersedes the seen and is eternal.

Not following fashion and the fad

but following vision and purpose

regardless of those who oppose or resist

or try to restrain, contain or disdain

or ridicule strangle or muzzle.

Not following fear,

but following faith in God,

hope and love-the greatest.

Not following culture or traditions of men

but following the inward witness

and revelation knowledge and rhema from God.

Not following the winds of doctrine

that can so easily beset and deceive

or uncertain riches

but following godliness, righteousness

and contentment which are true riches and is great gain.

Not following the short cut,

line of least resistance, or my comfort zone,

but following the well-tried path

and most rewarding and wisest path at all costs-

paying the price to obtain the prize.

Not following folly and anger rage or bitterness

but following self-control, patience, love and loving-kindness.

Not following strife or quarrels

But peace with passion and action.

Not following the counsel of the ungodly,

nor standing in the way of sinners,

nor sitting in the seat of God-mockers,

but delighting in the law of Lord and meditating on it day and night.

That is why I am like a tree planted by the rivers of waters

and I bring forth my fruit in due season.

My leaves shall not wither and whatever I shall prosper.

Oil For the Light ( C.H. Spurgeon)

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Exodus 25:6

Oil for the light.

My soul, how much thou needest this, for thy lamp will not long continue to burn without it. Thy snuff will smoke and become an offence if light be gone, and gone it will be if oil be absent. Thou hast no oil well springing up in thy human nature, and therefore thou must go to them that sell and buy for thyself, or like the foolish virgins, thou wilt have to cry, “My lamp is gone out.” Even the consecrated lamps could not give light without oil; though they shone in the tabernacle they needed to be fed, though no rough winds blew upon them they required to be trimmed, and thy need is equally as great.

Under the most happy circumstances thou canst not give light for another hour unless fresh oil of grace be given thee. It was not every oil that might be used in the Lord’s service; neither the petroleum which exudes so plentifully from the earth, nor the produce of fishes, nor that extracted from nuts would be accepted; one oil only was selected, and that the best olive oil. Pretended grace from natural goodness, fancied grace from priestly hands, or imaginary grace from outward ceremonies will never serve the true saint of God; he knows that the Lord would not be pleased with rivers of such oil. He goes to the olive-press of Gethsemane, and draws his supplies from Him who was crushed therein. The oil of gospel grace is pure and free from lees and dregs, and hence the light which is fed thereon is clear and bright.

Our churches are the Saviour’s golden candelabra, and if they are to be lights in this dark world, they must have much holy oil. Let us pray for ourselves, our ministers, and our churches, that they may never lack oil for the light. Truth, holiness, joy, knowledge, love, these are all beams of the sacred light, but we cannot give them forth unless in private we receive oil from God the Holy Ghost.

In the World but Not of the World

 

Genesis 1:4

And God divided the light from the darkness.

A believer has two principles at work within him. In his natural estate he was subject to one principle only, which was darkness; now light has entered, and the two principles disagree. Mark the apostle Paul’s words in the seventh chapter of Romans: “I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: but I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin, which is in my members.” How is this state of things occasioned? “The Lord divided the light from the darkness.” Darkness, by itself, is quiet and undisturbed, but when the Lord sends in light, there is a conflict, for the one is in opposition to the other: a conflict which will never cease till the believer is altogether light in the Lord. If there be a division within the individual Christian, there is certain to be a division without. So soon as the Lord gives to any man light, he proceeds to separate himself from the darkness around; he secedes from a merely worldly religion of outward ceremonial, for nothing short of the gospel of Christ will now satisfy him, and he withdraws himself from worldly society and frivolous amusements, and seeks the company of the saints, for “We know we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren.” The light gathers to itself, and the darkness to itself. What God has divided, let us never try to unite, but as Christ went without the camp, bearing His reproach, so let us come out from the ungodly, and be a peculiar people. He was holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners; and, as He was, so we are to be nonconformists to the world, dissenting from all sin, and distinguished from the rest of mankind by our likeness to our Master.

Reigning in His Righteousness ( by C.H. Spurgeon)

Reigning in His Righteousness

Jeremiah 23:6 The Lord our Righteousness.

It will always give a Christian the greatest calm, quiet, ease, and peace, to think of the perfect righteousness of Christ. How often are the saints of God downcast and sad! I do not think they ought to be. I do not think they would if they could always see their perfection in Christ. There are some who are always talking about corruption, and the depravity of the heart, and the innate evil of the soul. This is quite true, but why not go a little further, and remember that we are “perfect in Christ Jesus.” It is no wonder that those who are dwelling upon their own corruption should wear such downcast looks; but surely if we call to mind that “Christ is made unto us righteousness,” we shall be of good cheer. What though distresses afflict me, though Satan assault me, though there may be many things to be experienced before I get to heaven, those are done for me in the covenant of divine grace; there is nothing wanting in my Lord, Christ hath done it all. On the cross He said, “It is finished!” and if it be finished, then am I complete in Him, and can rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory, “Not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.” You will not find on this side heaven a holier people than those who receive into their hearts the doctrine of Christ’s righteousness. When the believer says, “I live on Christ alone; I rest on Him solely for salvation; and I believe that, however unworthy, I am still saved in Jesus;” then there rises up as a motive of gratitude this thought- “Shall I not live to Christ? Shall I not love Him and serve Him, seeing that I am saved by His merits?” “The love of Christ constraineth us,” “that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves but unto Him which died for them.” If saved by imputed righteousness, we shall greatly value imparted righteousness.