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My song is love unknown,
My Savior’s love to me;
Love to the loveless shown,
That they might lovely be.
O who am I, that for my sake
My Lord should take, frail flesh and die?
He came from His blest throne
Salvation to bestow;
But men made strange, and none
The longed for Christ would know:
But O! my Friend, my Friend indeed,
Who at my need His life did spend.
Sometimes they strew His way,
And His sweet praises sing;
Resounding all the day
Hosannas to their King:
Then “Crucify!” is all their breath,
And for His death they thirst and cry.
Why, what hath my Lord done?
What makes this rage and spite?
He made the lame to run,
He gave the blind their sight,
Sweet injuries! Yet they at these
Themselves displease, and ’gainst Him rise.
They rise and needs will have
My dear Lord made away;
A murderer they saved,
The Prince of life they slay,
Yet cheerful He to suffering goes,
That He His foes from thence might free.
In life, no house, no home
My Lord on earth might have;
In death no friendly tomb
But what a stranger gave.
What may I say? Heav’n was His home;
But mine the tomb wherein He lay.
Here might I stay and sing,
No story so divine;
Never was love, dear King!
Never was grief like Thine.
This is my Friend, in Whose sweet praise
I all my days could gladly spend.
The Law commands and makes us know
What duties to our God we owe;
But ’tis the Gospel must reveal
Where lies our strength to go His will.
The Law discovers guilt and sin,
And shows how vile our hearts have been;
Only the Gospel can express
Forgiving love and cleansing grace.
What curses doth the Law denounce
Against the man that fails but once!
But in the Gospel Christ appears
Pard’ning the guilt of num’rous years.
My soul, no more attempt to draw
Thy life and comfort from the Law;
Fly to the hope the Gospel gives;
The man that trusts the promise lives.
~Isaac Watts (HT: Ollie)
HT: Justin Taylor
For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you (1 Thess. 1:4).
…you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God (1 Thess 1:9b).
A fleshly mind may ask, “How can these things be?” How can Divine predestination accord with human agency and accountableness? But a truly humble Christian, finding both in his Bible, will believe both, though he may be unable to fully understand their consistency ; and he will find in one a motive to depend entirely on God, and in the other a caution against slothfulness and presumptuous neglect of duty. And thus a Christian minister, if he view the doctrine in its proper connexions, will find nothing in it to hinder the free use of warnings, invitations, and persuasions, either to the converted or the unconverted. Yet he will not ground his hopes of success on the pliability of the human mind, but on the promised grace of God, who (while he prophesies to the dry bones, as he is commanded) is known to inspire them with the breath of life.
~Andrew Fuller. Letters on Systematic Divinity. Letter II: Importance of a True System
Do not legalize the gospel as if part remained for you to do, or suffer, and Christ were but a half Mediator; as if you must bear part of your own sin, and make some satisfaction.
Let sin break your heart, but not your hope in the gospel.
~Thomas Wilcox, Honey out of the Rock.
What follows is a message about a recent convert from one of our missionaries on the field.
This message picks up from Abraham recently coming to Christ from his Muslim religion. At the news of his conversion his wife became irate and moved to divorce him. We had prayer for Abraham during this time and this is the latest message we received,
Abraham’s wife never changed and so she still forced Abraham to divorce her and pay thousands of dollars in fines. He arrived at court last week. His wife announced to the judge and all who were present that Abraham had apostatized and converted to Christianity. Abraham was shocked because his wife had told Abraham that she would not say anything during the court hearing. She has also contacted all of Abraham’s family, friends, and co-workers to tell them about his conversion. To Abraham’s amazement he still has the support of his relatives. Because of Abraham’s godly conduct and his kindness toward his wife even in the midst of this divorce his family is not turning against him.
I was talking with Abraham for a long time last night. He told me how for the first three days or so after the divorce he was so hurt. He said he was overwhelmed with sadness and was crying a lot.
But, now he has been filled with deep and even overflowing peace and joy. He said he’s never been so happy in all his life. He told me he was walking the other day and talking with the Lord. He said, “God, why are you so good to me? I’m nothing, I’m rubbish, yet you have given me so much peace and love and joy. I thank you so much! You are too good to me!” Abraham rarely stops smiling.
And praise God. The news of Abraham’s conversion to Jesus has gone out to all. So, he now has no fear. Everything is in the open, everyone knows he’s a follower of Jesus. And we’re praying that God will draw some to Abraham and find the forgiveness of sins found in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life. (Matt 19:29)
Beloved Christian, sin’s days are numbered in your life! The ax has already been laid to the root of your sin. Like a tree that has been cut off at ground level, its leaves may still appear green for a while, but the fact is that its life is over. It is only a matter of time until every leaf withers and falls to the ground!
Sin is a defeated foe. The war against sin has already been won. Like the pockets of resistance that sometimes continue to struggle on in ignorance after the treaty of surrender has already been signed, so sin continues to fight on in our lives with no hope of ultimate victory. Though the believer’s conflict with sin may at times be fierce, the final outcome of the battle is assured.
For the Christian, sin is but an early summer snow. Such snows fall occasionally even in the warmer climates, but they are only the death throes of a winter that is past. In a day or two they are melted and gone, and they have no power to stop the inexorable advance of summer. Christian, sin does not stand a chance in your life! You can fight against it with the confident knowledge that summer, not winter, is approaching! The remnants of sin that you still face are just the vestiges of what you once were; they are not an expression of who you are now, and they will soon pass away forever!
~Charles Leiter in Justification and Regeneration, pp. 88