To Ponder:

“Let us be clear, then, that the basis for fellowship with other Christians is the fellowship we have with God through Christ. This is the emphasis in 1 John 1:3, ‘That which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.’ The supernatural quality of the relationship Christians have with each other is because of what we share in Christ.

Commenting on this passage, John MacArthur wrote, ‘Anybody in fellowship with Jesus Christ is also in fellowship with anybody else in fellowship with Jesus Christ. This is our common ground. It is not social, economic, intellectual, cosmetic, or anything else superficial. Our common ground is that which is pulsing through the life of every Christian- the heartbeat of God. Our common ground is that we possess a common eternal life and are children in the same family.’” “Spiritual Disciplines Within the Church” Donald Whitney

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To Ponder:

The Word of God is the Christian’s compass and chart, by which he is steered safely over the tempestuous ocean of life! (William Nicholson, 1862)

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To Ponder:

Short pithy quotes from Adrian Rogers

  • Our sins were the nails that nailed Him to that tree–and our hard hearts were the hammers that drove those nails!
  • Reputation is what others think about you. Character is what God knows about you.
  • If you live for this world–then you are in the junk business. It’s all just premature junk!
  • Anything you love more, fear more, serve more, or value more than God–is your idol!
  • To be almost saved–is to be totally lost!
  • The devil would just as soon send you to Hell from the pew–as from the gutter!
  • God is sovereign–so live confidently. God is holy–so live reverently.
  • Where God leads–He feeds. Where God directs–He protects. Where God guides–He provides.
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To Ponder:

What comes into our minds when we think about God, is the most important thing about us! The history of mankind will probably show that no people has ever risen above its religion, and man’s spiritual history will positively demonstrate that no religion has ever been greater than its idea of God. Worship is pure or base–as the worshiper entertains high or low thoughts of God. For this reason, the gravest question before the Church is always God Himself. And the most portentous fact about any man, is not what he at a given time may say or do–but what he in his deep heart conceives God to be like. Always the most revealing thing about the Church is her idea of God, just as her most significant message is what she says about Him or leaves unsaid–for her silence is often more eloquent than her speech. Without doubt, the mightiest thought the mind can entertain, is the thought of God. The weightiest word in any language, is its word for God. That our idea of God correspond as nearly as possible to the true being of God, is of immense importance to us. Compared with our actual thoughts about Him–our creedal statements are of little consequence. A right conception of God is basic not only to theology–but to practical Christian living as well. There is scarcely an error in doctrine or a failure in applying Christian ethics–which cannot be finally traced to imperfect and ignoble thoughts about God. It is my opinion that the current Christian conception of God is so decadent as to be utterly beneath the dignity of the Most High God, and actually to constitute something amounting to a moral calamity! (A.W. Tozer)

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To Ponder:

Trials are medicinal. They are designed by God to correct or to restrain or to cure–the maladies of our souls. Though He puts forth His hand, and seems to threaten our dearest comforts–yet when we remember that it is His hand, when we consider that it is His design, His love, His wisdom, and His power–we cannot refuse to trust Him! Every affliction in the life of the believer–is designed by God and sovereignly implemented by Him. “Before I was afflicted I went astray–but now I obey Your Word!” Psalm 119:67. “It was good for me to be afflicted–so that I might learn Your decrees.” Psalm 119:71. “I know, O LORD, that your laws are righteous, and in faithfulness You have afflicted me.” Psalm 119:75. Christ’s suffering was punitive–the Christian’s suffering is restorative. The cup which Christ drank, was filled with Divine wrath–the cup of suffering which God calls His children to drink, is only medicinal to promote their chief good. Like heavy weights on a grandfather clock–trials are necessary for the Christian life to operate properly. God will allow nothing to grieve us–but what He intends to employ as means for our greater advantage. (John Newton)

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To Ponder:

From the Letters of John Newton (edited)

My Dear Madam,

I perceive that your heavenly Father has again put you into the furnace, and I trust that He will divinely impress upon your heart, that there is a needs be for it–and that the outcome of your present trial shall surely end in good to your soul. His Word tells us that trials are absolutely necessary, and why they are so–as He would not afflict those whom He loves, but for their real profit. So He chooses those afflictions for us, and appoints them for us at such seasons, and attended with such circumstances–as He sees will be (all things considered) most for our spiritual advantage. The afflictions and trials of His people are always sent, either to cure–or to prevent something still worse.

He is a good master to serve–I have found Him to be so for thirty years. Cheer up, dear Madam, the Lord does all things well! Do not be afraid of storms–for you have an infallible Pilot who will guide you with His eye, uphold you with His arm, and is every minute bringing you nearer to the harbor of eternal rest and peace! Yet, I trust, we are still growing and getting forward. Neither frost or floods have been able to destroy us; and Oh, Madam, (may our hearts rejoice at the thought!) the harvest is approaching! When He sees that we are fully ripe–when all that He has designed to do for us, in us, and by us, is completed–then He will separate us from these clods of earth, and remove us into His dwelling place, where we shall be done with fears and trials forever!

We shall not then live this poor dying life–neither shall we have to complain of an evil heart of unbelief. We shall not complain of a cold and careless heart–because we shall be at the fountain-head of all our best wishes and desires! We shall be enjoying, through eternal ages, that ineffable bliss which is prepared for all who love God, and who have been called by divine grace, out of the service of sin, Satan, and the world–to love and serve Him who is the Rock of eternal ages. Yes, my dear Madam, we shall, with unspeakable delight–see Jesus as He is, and be completely like Him! Let us, then, not be weary in well doing; for, in due season, we shall reap, if we fail not.

I am, my dear Madam, Your obliged and affectionate Servant,

John Newton

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To Ponder:

The duty, the privilege, the safety, the unspeakable happiness! “Looking unto Jesus!” Hebrews 12:2. Look unto the Lord Jesus Christ! Look unto Him as He hung exposed, wounded, bleeding, dead, and forsaken upon the cross! Look unto Him again as He now reigns in glory, possessed of all power in Heaven and in earth, with thousands of thousands of saints and angels worshiping Him! And then compare your sins–with His blood, your needs–with His fullness, your unbelief–with His faithfulness, your weakness–with His strength, your inconstancy–with His everlasting love! If the Lord opens the eyes of your understanding, you would be astonished at the comparison! “Looking unto Jesus” is the duty, the privilege, the safety, the unspeakable happiness, of a believer–are all comprised in that one sentence! It is by looking to Jesus, that the believer is enlightened and strengthened, and grows in grace and sanctification. (John Newton)

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