Proverbs & Short Pieces


 Approximately 800 short, pithy expressions of truth.

"He that is wise will hear, and will increase learning" (Prov. 1: 5)

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1

What is Faith? Close your eyes to everything visible, and open your ear to God. That is faith.

Bad doctrine leads to bad behaviour.

You can learn of a person by reading of that person in a book, but to learn from that person you must be in his company.

Humility is the secret of fellowship, and pride is the secret of division.

If we do not put into practice what we say we have believed, then we have not really believed it.

I think that when near the Lord you look at your mercies, when away from Him at your troubles. 

The best way to correct a failing in your brother is to be in yourself the living expression of the virtue he lacks

2

The Bible is always a new book to those well–acquainted with it.

Spiritual work can only be done by spiritual strength.

Every step in faith’s pathway will be contested by the Devil.

It is a poor gain to acquire considerable knowledge of God without its having at the same time a deep moral effect on the soul.

Lot walked “by sight”—he lifted up his own eyes (Gen. 13: 10). Abram walked “by faith” and lifted up his eyes only at the command of Jehovah (Gen. 13: 14). 

The great conductor, Reichel, was taking his choir and orchestra through their final rehearsal of Handel’s Messiah. In flawless fashion, the soprano soloist sang her part and all expected the conductor to congratulate her. Instead, he responded, “You don’t know your Redeemer lives, do you?” Embarrassed, she stammered, “I think I do”. “Then sing it so I know you have experienced the joy and power of it”.

Beloved, let us be decided, for its is impossible for us to grasp at things before and behind too. Were we “pressing forward towards the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus”, were we “reaching forth unto those things which are before”, we must be forgetting those behind. Were we looking up, gazing with the eye of faith on our portion above could we be groping in the dirt of this world for what we might find there? Could we be making a god of business, pleasure, riches or reputation? Faith is an anticipating grace. Faith is a substantial reliance on the verities of God, such as makes its possessor count all things else but dross and dung for Christ and the things above. Dear, reader, either give up professing to be guided by the Bible or act as if you believed it. There is such a thing as the obedience of faith, and if we don’t obey, our religion is all pretence and unreality.

3

All the revivals in Christianity have usually been accompanied, if not caused, by a considerable amount of open–air preaching.

The way to be very great is to be very little.

It is only by faith we see our home above that we are proper pilgrims here.

I am a pilgrim here because I am going home; I am a stranger here because I am not at home.

I am often troubled that many seek to know how to know God’s will without really having the heart to do it.

The Lord’s coming was constantly before the mind of the apostles and the early believers, and entered into and coloured all their thoughts, words and actions.

“Occupation with” leads to “likeness to”.

4

Humility is not demeaning ourselves and thinking poorly of ourselves. It is simply not thinking of ourselves at all.

The servant said in his heart— he did not preach it— “my Lord delayeth His coming”

The Christian is not ruined by living in the world, but by the world living in him.

“Search the Scriptures” said the Lord, using the Greek word which implies a strict, diligent, curious search such as men make when seeking gold.

If you do not pray for those whom you do know, you can hardly pray for those whom you do not know.

Reasoning about Christ without affection for Christ, is the road to error.

God loves every one of us as if there were but one of us.

The sealing of the Spirit is I know that I am God's property. The earnest of the Spirit is that I have got property.

5

Not only must something be done to evangelise the millions, but everything must be done “if by any means I may save some” is to be our motto.

May we live more as those who will meet one another in glory!

Life and harmony in the Church depend on subjection to the Head, and on mutual subjection to one another.

If we would lead into God’s truth, we must put our neck into Christ’s yoke.

When teaching ceases to be definite it ceases to be powerful.

A man’s serviceability does not consist of what he knows, but of what he is—he is not effective beyond that.

The believer is a vessel for the display of Christ in this world.

6

Liberality is measured by God in relation to what remains, and not in relation to what is given.

Spirituality and popularity are not compatible.

The communion of the soul is affected by the view we take of the Son of God.

It is not how much we know about the Lord that is important, but how much we know Him.
(2 Tim.1:12)

No service for God is insignificant to God.

If we substitute formality for reality we may hoodwink others but not God.

The darkest cloud brings the heaviest showers of blessings.

God is not looking merely for persons who hold the truth but exponents of it too.

7

God has put us in Christ, but we do not always put ourselves where God has placed us.

If we would prevail with men in public, we must prevail with God in private.

Sport for the sportsman, politics for the politician, money for the miser, Christ for the Christian.

Christ in the head is of no value without Christ in the heart.

The Pope’s calendar only makes saints of the dead, but Scripture requires sanctity in the living.

Faith is taking God at his word.

Love for Jesus sets one to work. I know no other way.

The time will soon come when we shall say of all that has not been Christ in our lives and ways, “that was all lost”.

Christians should be different, not odd. Oddness repels people, difference attracts.

8

God is most patient towards mere want of light; but He is intolerant of His saints trifling with the light He has given them

Application of Scripture must be consistent with its explanation.

We accept that the eye cannot do without the hand, (1 Cor. 12: 21), but neither can the eye do the work of the hand.

When the Spirit comes into the believer, He makes Christ dearer, Heaven nearer, and the Word of God clearer.

If Christ is worth having, He is worth sharing.

What is of faith cannot fail.

It is a poor thing to claim to have the Spirit, and be content to serve and live without the power.

One may be busy in works even where the power which once prompted them has largely declined.

9

Apply yourself wholly to the Scriptures, and apply the Scriptures wholly to yourself.

Now is the time to make an investment in eternity.

There is always a correspondence between the character and condition of the teachers and the taught.

Prayer must not be transformed into an oblique sermon. It is little short of blasphemy to make devotion an occasion for display.

We want not simply to know the truth, we want to be ardent about it, so that we make it evident that we really have it.

Christ died rather than allow sin to subsist before God.

The infirmities of our brethren are fair occasions for our patience and long–suffering: let us have grace for each opportunity.

All the trials and all the sufferings of all creatures—were they heaped together—must not be compared with Christ’s sufferings on the cross.

Christ never did anything for Himself.

10

The Holy Spirit enables us to fulfil earthly duties in a heavenly manner.

There is a difference between Christ’s sealing and ours. He was sealed because of what He was in Himself, we are sealed because of what we are in Him.

There is a great difference between being occupied with what you are saved from, and what you are saved to.

A careless reader of the Scriptures never made a close walker with God.

Many believers, though they live in NT times, walk in the OT spirit.

Being a model citizen did not give Lot’s testimony any power—it was as if he jested. Abraham was separate and had all the power of God at his disposal.

I believe the converting of a soul is something greater than the making of a world.

We either leave our mark on the world or the world leaves its mark on us.

11

We must not take our own impressions, however earnestly and piously derived, as necessarily in accordance with the will of God, without testing them by His revealed Word—in short, making our test in each case not subjective feeling, but objective revelation.

The Christian is promised no earthly portion except the cross that He bore.

Love likes to be a servant; selfishness likes to be served.

We are never to give up anything that is of God.

A well–worn Bible is the sign of a well–fed soul.

Our lack of walking in the Spirit often moves others to like negligence.

The deeper the trial the sweeter the song that results.

Faith acts upon God’s word whatever the difficulty.

Christ was the display, at all cost to Himself, of divine love to man.

12

Christ must not be merely prominent, He must be pre–eminent.

It is possible to be strict without being legal, wide hearted without being worldly.

We are the only picture of Christ that some people will ever see.

What is most precious in the sight of God is often least noticed by men.

The so–called innocent amusements of the world are only contrivances to forget God.

Contend for the faith without being contentious.

Grace came down to the bottom because love wanted me at the top.

Faith is that we have the light of God’s things; piety is that we bring God into our own things.

We can be dead right, but dead nonetheless.

The notion that ministry can be both effective and painless is a lie.

13

If we had more “Holy Spirit” prayer meetings, we would have more “Holy Spirit” preachings.

We see what God thinks of man at the cross, and we also see what man thinks of God.

It is the nature of sin to obtain great power by little beginnings.

Study the written Word to know Him who is the Living Word.

The way we view eternity affects the way we live in time.

Faith, like an anchor, holds to the unseen.

We may fail, but He abides faithful, (2 Tim. 2: 13).

Faith without works is dead. Not sickly, not weak, but dead!

The rich are not always godly, but the godly are always rich.

Creation is an outstretched finger pointing to God.

Scripture says that the early Christians "turned the world upside down", (Acts: 17: 6 - AV). In our generation, the world is turning the Church upside down.

14

God is more interested in our worship than our work.

Everyone who finds himself in heaven will have to thank God for it, and everyone who finds himself in hell will have to thank himself.

The devil may be out of fashion but he is certainly not out of business.

Humility is the result of knowing Christ and knowing yourself.

God’s grace cannot be measured, nor adequately defined—it is too great.

Ignorance of the truth is one thing, indifference is another.

Since the Lord may come at any time, we must be ready all the time.

Before Martha’s service can be at its best she must first take Mary’s place.

The joy of the Lord is the only antidote for the pleasures of sin.

When the Spirit comes into the believer He makes Christ dearer, heaven nearer, and the Word of God clearer.

15

The Christian life is not a playground but a battleground.

Abraham took Lot out of Egypt, but he could not take Egypt out of Lot.

All roads in Scripture lead to the Lord Jesus.

God makes more of the dedication of the heart than any outward service that we can render.

Our giving up the world and the world giving us up are two very different things.

When an attempt is made to separate Christians into two classes we may be sure it is almost always evil.

The Lord Jesus always finds service for willing hands.

In small points of obedience are found the best test of the soul’s state.

If we say that we believe something, but fail to act on it, we never really believed it.

16

Our ambition in life should be to glorify Christ. Anything else is unbecoming for a Christian.

The application of a little love heals many a wound amongst brethren.

Many a Christian is eager to serve; few are willing to submit themselves to God’s training.

What is traditional may be easily mistaken for what is Scriptural.

Christ was perfect: it is not only that He did not sin, but that He could not sin.

It is one thing to speak of God as Father; quite another to know Him in that relation.

If God, the great God is for me, who can I fear?

The Bible is the Word of God and should be read as such. It is not just a book, but a channel of communication.

17

May we live as those who will meet one another in glory!

Your morality may keep you out of jail, but it takes God’s grace and the death of His Son to keep you out of Hell.

More evil is done to the cause of Christianity by its adherents than by its enemies.

The Bible will keep you from sin, or sin will keep you from the Bible.

I do not care for novel interpretations of Scripture. Cream lies on the surface.

The humblest piece of God’s creation is far more wonderful than anything that man has ever made.

It took one day to get Israel out of Egypt; it took 40 years to get Egypt out of Israel.

Occupation with self is distressing. Occupation with others is discouraging. Occupation with Christ is delightful.

18

Earthly friends may come and go, but Christ remains.

If you are what you have always been, you are not a Christian.

The way to arrive at the sense of the immensity of sin is by having a sense of the immensity of the grace that has met it.

It is one thing to hope that God is with me in what I do, quite another to know it.

A doctrine can never be founded upon a type. Instead it is the doctrine that explains the type.

What a man is in his prayer–closet is what he is.

God has put us in Christ, but we do not always put ourselves where God has put us.

The Holy Spirit makes good in me what Christ has done for me.

Following Christ may at times be expensive, but it will more than repay.

19

The same love that shone on His perfect path below shines now on our own imperfect courses.

The truest witness will be the greatest sufferer.

Our place in the world is decided by what His place there is.

We are poor students, but He is a great teacher.

All the sorrows that we are acquainted with in this vale of tears are the sorrows of an imperfect creature. The sorrows of the Perfect One we cannot fathom.

There is nothing we need press on each other in these days more than the need for prayer.

The heart is very prone to stop short of the blessing God proposes for it.

Heaven will be the best and safest place to hear of the results of our work.

20

Indifference towards evil is the greatest evil.

Man’s opinion is no substitute for the Word of God.

Sins may be forgiven; sin is never forgiven.

Extremes usually start with slight deviations.

Earth has no sorrow that heaven cannot feel.

Where the Gospel is marginalised, so is Christ.

Out of communion into law. And once in law, into sin—because we can’t keep it.

Every privilege has a responsibility; but every responsibility has a power to carry it out.

It will be found that, where a person systematically misapplies scripture, he destroys some fundamental principle of the Word of God.

It is obedience in a Christian that proves his love to Christ.

It is not equal knowledge that puts us in communion with one another, but the purpose of heart.

There is present loss and loss in the future when we are linked with the world.

21

The Bible may be old, but its truths are always new.

Your life may be the only testimony someone may ever see.

The Lord does not make light of our sorrow. We only know sorrow in an imperfect way, He knows it perfectly.

If you ally yourself with the world, it gives the impression that it isn’t going to be judged.

To act only because our path is clear of difficulty is not faith.

In everything God is just, be it judgement or justification.

The nearer you get to something, it is not you that becomes greater, but the object before you.

We think much of our standard of living, but God is more interested in our standard of giving.

If the heart begins to approve itself because of its intelligence, the sense of need lessens, and piety diminishes.

22

The Christian has given up that which he could not keep for that which he cannot lose.

Lip–service in the things of God is not enough. There must be heart-service.

If repentance does not mark the beginning, there is no depth in the conversion.

Human arrangements hinder divine power.

It is worth a world to have an intimate eternity with Christ.

The state of our souls may be discerned by the effect produced upon us by the name of the Lord Jesus.

Whoever is keeping on terms with the world, is not walking with God.

Wherever there is claim to great spirituality, there is great danger.

For sinners heaven is free; for saints it costs the earth.

23

Before you can properly fill in the detail, you must have the outline of sound words.

The way to kill sin in your life is to feed Scripture to your life.

The sinner hides from God; the saint hides in God.

Abraham outside of Sodom had more influence that Lot within.

Practice without doctrine leads to error; doctrine without practice is hypocrisy.

Behind every scene of our lives lies the hand of the God who loves us.

The Lord is the most important person to be in fellowship with.

Error often rides to its deadly work on the back of truth.

The value of a gift is not how much it benefits the recipient, but how much it costs the giver (see Luke 21: 1-4).

24

Whatever makes Christ more precious to us is of God.

There are no people so hard to teach as those that imagine that they are more advanced than they are.

Great men of God are never such in their own eyes.

Which is more worthy to occupy our thoughts - the littleness of our love, or the fullness of that love which passes knowledge?

It is easier to teach the lessons of Christianity than it is to learn them.

When knowledge enters the head it exalts me; when knowledge enters the heart it humbles me.

It is easier to keep the enemy out than it is to expel him after he has affected an entrance.

Sin cannot flourish where godliness is cultivated.

Scientists are concerned about where man came from; Christians are concerned where man is going to.

25

The way to measure growth is by what we think of Christ.

We are to be ready for the last moment by being ready at every moment.

Our talk must be in accord with our walk.

The way to be in the right state for the Lord’s Supper is to remember whose supper it is.

What you have time for reveals your priorities.

If there was one man who did not need to pray it was Christ-yet he prayed more than any other.

The point about worship is not what I get out of it, but what God gets out of it.

To experience God’s strength we must acknowledge our weakness.

26

In the last days the test of true love is the maintenance of the truth.

As only diamond can cut diamond, so only Scripture can interpret Scripture.

Whatever God is most set for, Satan is most set against.

We are never to seek to vindicate ourselves when it is a personal matter, but when the Lord’s name is dishonoured, then for His glory we may speak.

If we are not in the path of God’s will, we are not in the path of power.

The tendency is to lose dependence when we are enjoying the results of dependence.

Your are of no use to God until your will is broken.

How little we realise the magnitude of the fact that God is our Father. If a man had an emperor for his father he would not go to a peasant to ask for help.

Unconscious testimony is always the most powerful. I often think that at the judgement seat of Christ we shall find a word we have spoken casually, a little sentence dropped, has been more used than all our preaching and lectures.

The right things are not always popular and the popular things are not always right.

Light not acted upon becomes darkness, but light acted upon leads to more light.

27

He is a happy man who cannot please himself without pleasing God.

A dangerous state: great activity without great communion.

I must always look above my path to be able to walk in it.

If God sends the storm, He will also steer the vessel.

The secret of satisfaction with present circumstances is that He is possessed.

Our histories are like a piece of work––one side, the underside, all a tangle. But there is another side––the Lord is working out His own pattern.

Do what you can, where you are, with what you can.

His work for our conscience, His person for our heart.

28

The Bible is too deep for a scholar to master, yet simple enough for a child to read.

The purpose of evolution is not to explain nature, but to explain away God.

Those who fear God most, fear men least.

We are often guided by circumstances. The Lord Jesus was always guided by His Father’s will.

Politicians deal with the symptoms of society’s ills. God can deal with the root.

It is not good works or benevolence, but the link, however feeble, with Christ that excites the world’s hatred.

A soul who is in the secret of the divine mind must be content to be unappreciated and to walk alone.

Which would you rather have: a smooth path, or a path so rough that the Lord is compelled to show His face to you every step of the way?

It is good to be saved and to know it. It is best to be saved and to show it.

29

The nails could not keep Christ on the cross––but love could.

A man does not always receive the truth even when he is reduced to confess that he is in error.

Love is not to be measured by profession or emotion, but by obedience.

God is not only able to save, He is willing and waiting.

All that makes heaven a home to Christ will make it a home to me.

We cannot have power with men if we have not power with God. The greatest mistake any of us can make is to seek to have power before men without having been in the presence of God.

If you do not delight in His word, how can you say that you love God?

There are three distinct attitudes in which the soul may be found in reference to the dealings of God. When the will is broken, there is subjection; when the understanding is enlightened as to the Divine object, there is acquiescence, and when the affections are engaged with God Himself, there is positive rejoicing.

30

To render evil for good is devilish; to render good for good is human; but to render good for evil is divine!

In intellectual argument the Christian may be defeated. The argument of a changed life, however, is unassailable.

The moral change in the saints takes a lifetime, but the physical change when the Lord comes takes place in the twinkling of an eye.

It is not enough to hold the truth––the truth must hold us.

If your Bible is in good shape, it probably means that you are not.

Spiritually the road to Laodicea begins at Ephesus. There they had left their first love.

Shut out the world and you might hear God.

‘New light’ is often old error.

31

It is one thing to speak well of Christ, quite another to give up all for Him.

No one can love his neighbour as himself when he has more than he needs and his neighbour has less than he needs.

We are left here to display Christ. If we are not doing that then we are of no use to Him or to the world.

What we spend time on is proof of what we love.

Very often those who boast loudest are furthest from the truth they claim.

“The Son of God, who has loved me and given himself for me” (Gal. 2: 20)––this was the spur that drove the apostle on in untiring service for Christ.

Every servant knows the past of Christ, and many know of His future. What really matters, however, is knowing Him in the present.

God fans to get rid of the chaff (Matt. 3: 12); Satan sifts to get rid of the wheat (Luke 22: 31)

32

At Ephesus (Rev. 2: 4), Christ had not got His rightful place. In Laodicea He had no place at all (Rev. 3: 20).

God can deal with your past. He can provide for your future. But He needs your committal now.

Our desire to live piously can be measured by our persecution (2 Tim. 3: 12).

Little is much when God is in it.

We must handle the study of Christ as we would a priceless jewel––with care.

If the assembly’s prime object is Christ, then there will be something for both God and man. If it is not, then there will be a lack in both directions.

The Christian’s compass is the Word of God.

The Christian has an anchor that all the world’s storms cannot shift.

33

The man of God may live on earth, but he banks and trades in heaven.

We are strangers and pilgrims here (1 Peter 2: 11 AV). As strangers we eye the land where we are now; as pilgrims we eye the land to which we are going.

Low thoughts of Christ go with high thoughts of our state.

Worship is for God’s enjoyment––not mine.

The existence of the flesh does not stop communion, but allowance of it does.

Ability, however great, gift, however distinct, are not enough without personal communion.

If ministry is real, it brings God directly to the conscience through the Word, whereas that which is false stands between God and the conscience.

The Christian has a measureless income to live upon––the grace of God.

34

Satan’s patronage is to be more feared than his persecution.

The question for most of us is not how much we devote to Christ, but how much we reserve for ourselves.

Our obedience to God is a measure of our love for God.

Obeying the law was a duty; obeying Christ is a delight.

To be faithful we have not only to love what Christ loves, but to hate what He hates.

The Word of God should not only inform us––it should transform us.

While the Bible has a warning “Be not many teachers” (James 3: 1); there is no corresponding warning “Be not many learners”.

God does not think––man does; but God knows.

35

The higher you climb in this world the closer you are to the god of this world. Why? Because the god of this world is at the top of this world.

Man will settle for an orthodox faith; God demands a living faith.

My purpose here is to obey the Lord and to please God.

God is the only one who can at the same time both satisfy and stimulate.

The truest witness will be the greatest sufferer.

Our place in the world is decided by what His place there is.

I shall only learn the perfect sufficiency of God when I realise the utter insufficiency of self.

What is really profitable for the soul is what is for the glory of God.

36

It is not the quantity of what we do, but the measure in which we present Christ that is the value of our service.

It is on our knees that we defeat the forces of evil.

No one has a true estimate of the things in the world until he goes into the presence of God.

Discernment of what is false depends on knowledge of what is true.

If you stand for Christ, He will stand with you.

The love of Christ is like the blue sky on whose beauty you may gaze, but whose vastness you cannot measure.

For the unconverted, Christ is nothing. For the average Christian, Christ is something. For the committed Christian, Christ is everything.

The great cause of our neglect of the Scriptures is not want of time, but want of heart.

37

When the Holy Spirit communicates heavenly truth to the renewed heart, it always re–ascends in thanksgiving and praise.

It is easier to scribble truth on paper than it is to imprint it on the conscience.

No man can love his neighbour as himself when he has more than he needs and his neighbour has less than he needs.

It does not say the Father seeks worshippers––but such as His worshippers––that is those that worship in spirit and in truth.

Christianity and politics do not mix: they are occupied with different worlds.

If you want to walk with God then you will be out of step with the world.

There is no more humbling truth than this: the Son of God gave Himself for me.

I should be as dependent in prosperity as I am in poverty.

38

Satan has shown more zeal to ruin souls than most of us have had to save them.

It was not Christ’s life on earth that saves us but His death––and if His life could not save us, our life cannot.

Those who minister publicly should be consistent; for what they are may speak so loudly as to drown what they say.

Doctrine that isn’t practised is doctrine that isn’t believed.

Better than he who wipes a tear is he who prevents it from starting.

Adversity often shows our strength––prosperity, often, our weakness.

It often needs ‘more grace’ to be silent than to speak.

To be angry at nothing but sin is the way to “Be angry and sin not” (see Eph. 4: 26).

39

The more truth an error contains, the more dangerous it is.

Faith is to take God at His word.

The best way to correct a failing in your brother is to be in yourself the living expression of the virtue he lacks.

God makes more of the dedication of the heart than of any outward service we can render.

The drunkard and the thief are obviously on the broad road that leads to destruction. The Pharisee seems to be on the narrow way, yet in reality is only keeping to the clean side of the broad road.

There is always light for the pilgrim’s path––even though there may be many dark clouds in the sky.

Faith is like a cable, which though stretched and strained, does not break in the storm.

A very small stain upon the conscience makes a wide breach in our communion with God.

The fact that a Christian has an experience does not make it a Christian experience.

40

Faith sees the invisible, hears the inaudible, touches the intangible.

Some people give according to their means, others according to their meanness.

We must preach a full Gospel––Christ and nothing less, a plain Gospel––Christ and nothing more, and a pure Gospel––Christ and nothing else.

When God measures a man He puts the tape round his heart and not his head.

Our needs are great, but the Lord’s resources are inexhaustible.

You cannot follow Christ if you have never met Him.

Don’t expect to be liked if you are like Christ.

Prayer should be a delight not simply a duty.

A child of God should bear a family likeness.

41

The most powerful man on earth will be a praying man.

A church that lives on past glories will have no present power.

The antidote to spiritual pride is a view of divine grace.

There is no love without life, and no life without light.

If the death of Christ does not lead us to worship, then nothing will.

The Father’s house is a prepared place for a prepared people.

The most important ingredient in prayer is reality.

God’s timing is always perfect.

The problem with most of us is not understanding Scripture, but obeying it.

Count your blessings not your problems.

A woman may as well expect to have a child without pain as one can have repentance without sorrow.

42

You can never rise above the object you desire to reach. If your aim is simply to get on in the world, you will never rise above the world - never!

If you let God have your life, He will make more of it than ever you could have done.

Faithfulness in little things is a great thing.

Sins are like weeds––if they are not dealt with they just keep growing.

The Philadelphian thinks nothing of himself; the Laodicean thinks he is Philadelphian.

If what we do is not marked by holiness, then it has nothing to do with the Holy Spirit.

It is a bad time with the Christian when he has what is called a good time with people of the world.

Whether I walk faithfully, or whether I am a back-slider, the Lord always acts towards me in love.

43

For the Christian the Lord’s coming is more certain than death. I may or may not die, but the Lord will come.

Affection amongst saints springs from communion with God.

If the old creation was “very good” (Gen. 1: 31), what of the new?

Gift, if properly used, will always draw attention to its giver.

I cannot make Christ the centre of my efforts if He is not the centre of my thoughts.

There is no equality in an alliance between truth and error, since by this very alliance, truth ceases to be truth, and error does not thereby become truth.

When we are really weak God never leaves us, but when we are not aware of our infirmities we have to learn them by experience.

God cannot and will not turn a blind eye to sin.

44

The man of God may not preach what people want to hear, but he preaches what people need to hear.

Christ died alone but millions live to God on account of His death.

Love at the expense of truth is not love at all.

If we try to cover up sin it will eventually bring us down.

I cannot lose my salvation because it does not depend on me but the Lord.

The moment all seems hopeless is the moment that God delights to come into.

The best part of all Christian work is that part which only God sees. 

Lot would not give up God, but he would not give up much for God.

Fire is beneficial, but fire out of control is anything but beneficial. In the same way, the apostle fixes limits on love so that it may not run wild and embrace that which is error (Phil. 1: 9). May our love abound––but in accordance with knowledge and intelligence!

45

If I want the private approval of Christ I must expect the public disapproval of men.

Whatever humbles me helps me.

There is no excuse for sin. No one will plead palliating circumstances before the Judge of heaven and earth.

“Jesus wept” (John 11: 35). O how real was His manhood!

The more I talk about having the Lord’s approval then the more evident it is that I have not got it.

People speak of holding to the ‘Reformed faith’. In actual fact we are to contend for that which preceded it (Jude 3).

We cannot measure the delight God found in the Son––and for that reason we cannot measure the cost of what He gave (John 3: 16).

The moment a man is influenced by what he sees then he is not acting in faith. Faith is simply reckoning on the Word of God.

46

Our talk must be compatible with our walk.

It is a mistake to think that unity can be achieved by imposing uniformity.

The old nature in a saint is as bad as the old nature in a sinner.

There are popes in Protestantism just as much as in Catholicism.

The moment you deny that all Scripture is inspired, then all Scripture becomes uncertain.

The Lord was never too busy to meet souls in their needs.

The state of the prayer–meeting is the state of the church.

The more we love Christ the less we shall feel at home here.

47

We are to believe God’s Word without question, but no one else’s word.

Saul failed to utterly destroy the Amalekites, and it was an Amalekite that finally destroyed him.

The Bible is the most used and misused book of all time.

As a Christian matures spiritually he becomes more dependent.

Order according to man is disorder according to God.

You either have a living hope or a dead religion.

There is a joy that God gives that is independent of any circumstances we may pass through. 

In Lot we see how near a man can be to damnation and yet be saved; in his wife we see how near one may be to salvation and yet be lost.

The more I love Christ the more the world will hate me.

Money will buy a bed but not sleep, books but not brains, food but not appetite, finery but not beauty, medicine but not health, luxury but not culture, amusement but not happiness, a crucifix but not a Saviour, a temple of religion but not heaven (see 1 Tim. 6: 10).

48

Christ represents us above; we represent Him below.

Prayer is the slender nerve that moves the muscle of omnipotence.

Some of us are unbalanced: we have a long doctrinal leg and a short practical leg.

Abraham left all for God, left all with God, found all in God and yielded all to God.

You may travel the sea of life without Christ, but to what port are you heading?

Give up the Bible as a standard and morality is at the mercy of democracy.

Where Christ is accepted, I am accepted; where Christ is rejected, I am rejected.

Before I am ready to serve, I must be ready to obey.

Ability, however great, gift, however distinct, are not enough without personal communion.

49

When praying it is better to have a heart without words than words without a heart.

There is a great difference between being prepared to speak in the Assembly, and being determined to speak.

The existence of the flesh does not stop communion, but the allowance of it does.

Our toil here is brief, but its reward is eternal.

The worst sin is to reject the sin–purger.

Our old history ends with the cross, our new history begins with the resurrection.

While the Bible has a warning “be not many teachers” (James 3: 1), there is no corresponding warning “be not many learners”.

We may profess much and possess nothing.

50

Faith and God see alike.

Everyone of us is by nature worse than anything we have ever done.

Sin is one word, but what a volume of misery it describes.

God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supplies.

The way to strength is to realise our weakness.

God may turn from His wrath, but He never turns from His love.

What God condemns in the sinner He does not condone in the saint.

As you reverence God so you reverence His Word.

Christianity is conformative not reformative.

What Saul, Abner and Joab dedicated to the house of God was treasured (1 Chron. 26: 28). These men all failed later in their lives. The lesson here is that even if a brother goes wrong, his past service or ministry is still to be treasured.

We must go out to the lost if we expect such to come into blessing.

51

Partial obedience is disobedience (1 Sam. 15: 20–23).

Suffering seasons are generally sifting seasons.

The more we fear God the less we shall fear man.

There are Christians who know little but do much, and there are Christians who do little but know much.

There are two ways in which Christ shows His perfect love: first, by coming down to earth to bear my sins; second, by going up to heaven to give me His glory.

Many will admit that Scripture contains truth, but few will accept that all that it contains is truth.

There are many dead religions but only one living Christ.

Truth is truth whatever the vessel used to convey it.

52

The world cannot rise to the level of the Christian, but the Christian can sink to the level of the world.

Corruption within the camp is much more dangerous than opposition without (compare Josh. 6 and 7).

Christendom today is infatuated with power, and indifferent about piety.

God is “slow to anger”, “ready to forgive” and “mighty to save” (Neh. 9: 17; Ps. 86: 5; Is. 63: 1).

Christians ought to have only one ambition: to be like Christ.

A Christian is always in uniform, and always on duty––always representing Christ in a Christ–less world.

Our aim should always be to hold the truth in proportion, for truth out of proportion becomes error.

With Christ you cannot lose; with the Devil you cannot win.

Where we find power is on our knees before God.

53

To refrain from sin doesn’t make us holy, but holiness makes us refrain from sin.

We master the Scriptures only when the Scriptures master us.

Sincerity is no substitute for truth.

The godly life is a life that expresses God.

The best use of time is doing the will of God.

Sin will add to your trouble, subtract from your energy and multiply your difficulties.

Service must flow from occupation with the Master.

Conscience is a safe guide only when God’s Word is the guide of the conscience.

A Christian company can either evangelise or fossilise.

54

To know Christ the living Word, is to love the Bible, the written Word.

A care for the things of Christ is the very best evidence of a saved soul.

People who think much of their humility are often the proudest people of all.

Ministry without power is words without God.

To be loved by the Son of God! Can you conceive of anything more wonderful?

Popularity is not to be our aim, success is not to be our object, results are not to be our guide––we are called to be faithful in our testimony.

Only two things ever caused the Lord to marvel: the faith of a Gentile (Matt. 8: 10) and the unbelief of the Jews (Mark 6: 6).

There is a vast difference between going to Scripture to reinforce my opinions and going to Scripture prepared to be moulded by its teaching.

55

The bigot’s mind is like the pupil of the eye: the more light you pour in, the more it contracts.

The cross of Christ is the perfect expression of the love of God.

If you trust God you shouldn’t worry yourself.

Man has turned away from God. Solemn the hour that is coming when God will turn away from man.

If we say that we are going to heaven, then we must live as if leaving earth.

Some hymns are composed in the head, others flow from the heart.

Man’s answer to sin is to try and mend the first Adam. God’s answer is to bring forward the second Adam.

Science builds everything on the assumption that there is no God; Scripture builds everything on the assumption that there is.

56

Routine Christianity can be a short and dangerous road to ritualism.

The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church.

Judaism only produced one man who became a missionary––Jonah. In Christianity, every man should be a missionary.

The man who is not prepared to stand alone is not prepared to stand.

The same One who began His ministry with blessed, blessed, blessed (Matt 5), ended it with woe, woe, woe (Matt 23).

On the day that the Law was given, about three thousand souls perished (Ex. 32: 28); on the first day that grace was preached, about three thousand souls were saved (Acts 2: 41).

When the brain runs ahead of the heart, there is a grave risk of derailment. The two must be coupled together.

Cold prayers always freeze before they reach heaven.

There are many forms of unbelief, but one faith––faith in the Son of God.

57

Some preachers are like bad photographs—underdeveloped and overexposed.

Eternity on its own is an horrific thought. Eternity with Christ is utter bliss.

Read your Bible and pray every day—there is no simpler or better advice.

If I am religious, I look to my merits; if I am converted, I look to His mercy.

God may allow our physical health to suffer in order for our spiritual health to prosper.

It is possible to hold the position, and let go the Person.

There was once a great spiritual movement filled with godly men and women grieved at the many divisions of Christendom. They spoke much of “the ruin of the Church”. Gradually the power of the movement ebbed away and it divided into many sections—its adherents thereby learning the truth of “the ruin” amongst themselves.

58

The trials of life should make us better Christians, not bitter Christians.

When fear knocks at your heart’s door, let faith open it.

Spiritual idleness is the nest in which spiritual mischief lays its eggs.

Love in deed is love indeed!

Riches have eternal value only when we use them to bless others.

The degree of a man’s devotion to Christ can be gauged by the degree of his rejection by the world.

We must either be strangers in this world, or strangers to the next.

As man’s world crumbles, we have a hope secure: salvation in an unchanging God.

Faithfulness is always in proportion to faith, and where faithfulness breaks down, it is because faith has been dim before that.

The person who asks for a command for everything is a person who does not really want a command, and because he does not think there is one, he asks “Where is it?” He who has a truly obedience heart does not ask for a command but finds it.

59

Lust sees the bait offered, but is often blind to the hook.

Once we are redeemed, God no longer looks on our sins, but on Him who put our sins away.

Christendom is marked by an abundance of controversial theology and a dearth of practical holiness.

Heaven shall not only be all that we hoped for, but infinitely better than all our hopes.

Those that are not born again, shall one day wish they had never been born.

The dead are not only found in churchyards, but in churches too.

Saul vanquished the Ammonites, but not the Philistines whom he was raised up to overcome (1 Sam 9: 16). If people do not discharge the duty given them by God, it matters little how much else they do.

We may belong to the best of churches, and never belong to Christ.

Any fool can break things up; it takes God–given skill to build things up.

60

When you feel you have no need to pray, then you have most need to pray.

The world is like an ocean and we are like boats on that ocean. Now if the boat is in the water all is well, but if the water is in the boat it will sink. Such is the Christian and the world.

The Lord Jesus commenced His public ministry with prayer (Luke 3: 21) and He ended it with prayer (Luke 23: 34).

Living to God inwardly is the only possible means of living to Him outwardly.

Christianity is occupation with Christ, not the mere avoidance of evil.

How many of my thoughts today have come from Christ and how many from elsewhere?

Outward worldliness is simply the end result of what has been long incubating in the heart. 

The moment that you think your service has become indispensable is the moment God may dispense with your service.

Some people tone down the Gospel message in consideration of ‘people’s feelings’. Better hurt feelings now, than a future lost eternity!

61

In His presence I am nothing, and He is everything.

You can walk according to the Word, or you can walk according to the world.

Christ in the midst at Calvary. Two thieves––one brought nigh, and one, oh so very, very far away!

The word Lord necessarily implies its counterpart––slave. Yet though we call him Lord, can we honestly say we act as His slaves?

Enoch walked with God. What an epitaph!

Over 500 years ago in London, a number of poor men were praying for liberty to read God’s Word. On the very spot where that prayer meeting was held stand the buildings of a bible society today. God answers prayer.

Those who have little interest in Scripture, have little interest in Christ (Luke 24: 27).

It is one thing to preach that Christ is coming soon, quite another to live as if it were so.

Lot lived as if he were part of this world but Abraham was only passing through. How about you?

62

We may divide people into two great classes with regard to their treatment of the Bible: those who put the Bible above everything, and those who put something above the Bible.

When God gave His Son, He gave everything––there was nothing more He could give.

Prayer should be our first response, not our last resort.

Two or three together in subjection to God’s Word is better than two or three thousand who are not.

If you sleep spiritually, the Devil will feel able to sleep too; if you become active, the Devil will have to be active too.

We can never find strength in looking at the condition of the Church–– we must look at Christ.

Take an interest in what goes on outside your immediate circle. It is of great interest to Christ, and if your heart is right, it will be of great interest to you.

Ignorance of the truth is one thing, indifference is another.

When you cannot give time to read the Bible, remember those who gave everything so that you might have a Bible to read.

63

Salvation is totally free (Is. 55: 1), but not without cost (Luke 14: 28).

A hypocrite has God on his lips, but the world in his heart.

You may speak of a Saviour, even the Saviour, but unless you can say my Saviour, all is worthless.

Men of the world can spend a lifetime making a name for themselves. Christians ought to spend their lifetimes glorifying the Name above every name.

People often speak of serving the Lord ‘full time’. Actually, God is never interested in part–time commitment.

The more we study the Word, the more we discover our ignorance of it, and the more humble we shall be.

Adversity should make us better, not bitter Christians.

In your walk, you can be either out of step with the world, or out of step with Him.

It is possible to be in a low state and still ‘hold the truth’. To be held by the truth is quite another thing altogether.

64

Nothing shows the things of this world in their proper value like a ray from the glory where Christ is.

An inconsistent Christian is an ineffective Christian.

What we need more than anything else is individual devotion to the Lord.

Some see a dead Jew at Calvary––the Christian sees the Saviour of the world.

God’s grace is like an exhaustless deposit placed at the bank, so that all who are poor and needy may obtain “the forgiveness of offences, according to the riches of his grace” (Eph. 1: 7).

The desires of the heart reveal the state of the heart.

Divine principles in the hands of unspiritual people are like swords in the hands of drunkards. 

You are either cultivating likeness to Christ or likeness to the world.

We need to pray more, read more and sing more.

All human statements must be inferior to Scripture, even when drawn from it.

Whoever fathomed the full meaning of the words ‘My Father’ (see Luke 2: 49) but Christ? And who but He sounded the depths of “My God” (Matt. 27: 46)? Yet now in grace, we have been enabled to enjoy something of the same blessed relationships (John 20: 17).

65

You can either be a glory–bound saint, or a hell–bound sinner.

You will learn nothing of value in man’s college, that cannot be learned in God’s assembly.

One man’s faithfulness is another man’s extremism. God’s view is what matters.

We may cease to have dealings with Him, but He loves us too much to cease dealing with us (Heb. 12: 7, 8).

Grace must not be dispensed at the cost of truth. Truth must not be maintained at the expense of grace.

God knows my darkest secret, yet loves me with the deepest love.

Death may or may not come; the Lord will come.

An increasing likeness to Christ is the true measure of where we are in our Christian pathway.

The attachment of the name of the Lord to something said or done does not necessarily make it Christian!

66

The Bible is a best–seller that has never been popular.

Every great revival can be traced back to a kneeling figure.

God’s servant does God’s work in God’s way for God’s glory.

He that loves little, prays little; he that loves much, prays much.

Books and sermons may be resisted, tears and entreaties despised, but a Christ–like life is not easily disregarded.

People complain because their days are few then act as though there could be no end to them.

We are born again by a supernatural birth, kept by a supernatural power, sustained on supernatural food, and taught by a supernatural teacher from a supernatural book.

My time here is utterly wasted unless I spend it on something that will outlast it.

A true servant of the Master will never be able to complain of having time on his hands. There is always work to be done––the lack is not in the work, but in the time to do it.

67

There will be no world peace without the Prince of Peace.

Man credits God with nothing, but blames Him for everything.

Giving up requires no faith; going on demands absolute dependence.

The encouragement of the saints is a service open to all––irrespective of gift or growth.

Man’s pleasures come to an end, God’s last forever (see Ps. 16: 11).

The Bible either has absolute authority, or no authority at all.

God’s love is immeasurable, but it is not unknowable.

There is one thing worse than seeking a place in this world: seeking a place above your brethren.

A servant is not judged by how busy he is, but by his obedience to the Master.

68

Those who have studied a subject for years shouldn’t expect others to accept the fruit of their studies in seconds.

It is worth a world to have an intimate eternity with Christ.

The pathway of Christ can be compressed into three words: He Humbled himself (see Phil. 2: 8).

A real revival in our hearts is always the revival of the place of Christ in our hearts.

If you have opinions you may change them; if you have convictions they will hold you.

In proportion to how much the world creeps into our lives, so Christ is pushed out.

For everything that is of God, Satan has an imitation.

A man may be outwardly blameless but inwardly barren.

What God is determines what God does, and what God does proves what God is––love.

69

True repentance is never too late, but late repentance is seldom true.

If it is worthwhile to be a Christian, it is worthwhile to be in earnest about it.

The flesh can be cultivated and reformed, but it remains the flesh, and will never do for God.

The Christian has one ambition only––to be like Christ.

If in the civil sphere there is weakness where there should be strength, in the ecclesiastical sphere there is darkness where there should be light.

It is dangerous to acquire a corporate name: God will invariably test you by it. Boast in your unity, and you are but a step from breaking up. Take pride in your orthodoxy, and you are on the road to error.

“And Pharaoh called Joseph’s name Zaph-nath-paaneah” (Gen. 41: 45)––‘Saviour of the World’. How early is the largeness of God’s heart revealed!

He came down that I might go up, was made poor so that I might be rich, became dead so that I might live.

70

If Christ died for me, then I must live for Christ.

Some like to repeat what others have mined from the Scriptures, but never do any digging themselves.

The Gospel is not entertainment. If you get the world laughing with you, it will not be long before they are laughing at you.

In true Christianity, faith works, hope purifies and love acts, (see James 2: 18; 1 John 3: 3,16, 17).

Real testimony is not so much what we say, but what we are.

In prayer, I speak to God; in Scripture, God speaks to me. The two must go together.

Christ: your greatest lack, or your greatest possession.

It is very well to be liberal with what is my own; but if it is God’s truth then it is very presumptuous of me to be liberal with it!

71

God loved us - he could not like us. Yet He makes us what he likes - like Christ.

You cannot exaggerate, and no one has exaggerated, the grace of God.

Men can train others in theology, but only God can give gift.

Much of Christendom worships an “unknown God” (Acts 17: 23), so little is God really known.

Our service is in this world, but to be effective it must be in view of another, better world.

Read the “word of truth” (James 1: 18) written by the “Spirit of truth” (John 16: 13) with a prayerful desire to know “the truth” (John 14: 6).

The more you study Scripture, the more you become aware of your ignorance.

The worldling trusts in the limited resources of this world. Faith trusts in the limitless resources of God.

72

The grand business of the evangelist is to bring the soul and Christ together. The business of the teacher and the pastor is to keep them together.

Heaven is a prepared place for a prepared people.

When led of the Spirit, the child of God must be as ready to wait as to go, and as prepared to be silent as to speak.

Let the fact of what our Lord suffered for you grip you, and you will never be the same again.

No one ever lost out by excessive devotion to Christ.

If lips and life do not agree, your testimony will not amount to much.

Church history: a record of man’s failure and God’s grace.

Christ can be your substitute––but you cannot substitute anything for Christ.

John was a "burning and shining lamp" (John 5: 35). A true servant, he burnt himself out for Christ.

Excommunicating the wicked man was a big test of the obedience of the Corinthian saints. Welcoming him back was an even greater test.

73

Man always underestimates God.

At Calvary everything is laid bare––what man is, what sin is, and, wonderful fact, what God is.

To believe that God is––that He exists––is not the same as believing God––what He has said.

We should mine the Scriptures––get beneath the surface. Superficial knowledge produces superficial Christians.

It is a greater sin to practically deny the Holy Spirit His place in the Assembly whilst accepting the doctrine, than to resist it doctrinally alone.

Grace teaches as well as saves (Titus 2: 11, 12), and if we are not coloured by its lessons, it is not likely we have experienced its salvation.

Indifference to the Gospel is just as much a rejection of it as outright hostility.

God is quick to bless, but slow to judge.

74

Christians are like coals of fire––together they glow, apart they grow cold.

Lot got a place in the world, but paid for it with his family.

Backsliding always begins with the heart.

That Christ died is just history; that he died for me is salvation.

From the sinner God demands repentance; from the saint He demands reality.

At conversion, I get a change of heart, a change of master and a change of home.

As we grow spiritually, sins seem darker and God’s salvation brighter.

The ecumenical movement is unity without the Spirit.

A man is not judged by the darkness he cannot help but by the light he refuses.

75

A broad path means a broad conscience not a broad heart.

The flesh in a believer is exactly the same as the flesh in an unbeliever.

Science tells us that in the beginning there was nothing out of which came everything. The Bible tells us that God was in the beginning and made everything.

Many Christians were persecuted in the past. Some are still being persecuted in the present. None of us knows what the future holds for us before the Lord comes.

God never records the past, nor reveals the future, without desiring to affect us in the present.

Think nothing of yourself––but never forget how much God thought of you.

Satan is never so dangerous as when he comes to us with a Bible in his hand.

The eye must be on Christ. Not on Christianity, but on Christ.

Nothing on earth can justify the neglect of communion with heaven.

76

In spiritual things it is not what we know but what we actually possess that enriches our souls.

History can relate what has been. Speculation can guess what may be. God alone can reveal what shall be.

In the Church we are either a help or a hindrance––we cannot be neither.

Live today in the light of standing before God tomorrow.

The Dead Sea receives but never gives––hence its deadness. May it not be a picture of you or me!

Man wants proof of the existence of God. Everything around us is proof––if we have eyes to see it.

We have more than enough to occupy us in revelation without indulging in speculation.

In the Church some do everything, some do anything and some do nothing. Our place should really be to do his bidding––nothing less and nothing more.

The measure in which we love the brethren is the measure in which we love the Lord. That there has been such a breakdown in brotherly relations tells its own story.

77

Untold millions are perishing––untold about salvation.

Complacency is the enemy of the Church and the friend of Satan.

The thing we need above all else is to be prayed for. It is the greatest thing we can do for one another.

God is for us (see Rom. 8: 31). Would that we believed it more.

The enemy does not care what you believe, so long as you do not believe God.

You can only measure the departure from the truth by being acquainted with what things were like at the beginning.

Some are occupied with past glories; our eyes are to be on future glories.

You cannot be occupied with Him without being occupied with the needs of others.

In Christ there was the perfect setting forth of God to man, and also the perfect setting forth of man to God.

The Bible is no ordinary book: to properly understand it, you must know its author.

Law compels, but Grace attracts.

78

This world is a small thing when compared to the vastness of the universe, but it is not a small thing that God has done upon it.

Christianity is not so much what I say or what I do, but what I am––am I like Him?

The best thing becomes the worst thing if it is corrupted.

Draw nigh to God and He will draw nigh to you (see James 4: 8).

There is a world of difference between being zealous for the truth and hunting out error.

The more you give, the more you will receive.

I may not believe in God, but my unbelief does not alter His existence.

We hear a great deal about the power of the Spirit but see very little of the fruit of the Spirit.

79

My career, if I am true to my calling, is Christ, and everything else must be subjected to that.

Some people quote Scripture, others live it.

Friends, family and brethren fail us. God will never fail us.

Fellowship is most appreciated by those who have known what it is not to have it.

The Scriptures are an exhaustless mine of precious jewels.

When service becomes the be all and end all it ceases to be service in the true and worthwhile sense.

Gift in a meeting is no substitute for love.

What you display in your character is the greatest part of your testimony.

How much we fear God will be seen in how we handle the Scriptures.

Some conform themselves to the fashion of the world. others conform themselves to the traditions of the Church. You and I are to be conformed to Christ and His Word.

80

The Christian’s business in life is to magnify Christ––not his purse, or his tailor or himself.

There is a difference between speaking the truth from the head, and speaking it from the heart.

Some serve with a view to being recognised; others serve knowing they will be rejected.

When a man thinks he has become wise, he is, in reality, only ripening into a fool.

Dying people speak of being ‘ready to go’. As living people, we should be just as equally ‘ready to go’.

Some preach to entertain, others to educate, and many simply to moralize. A true Gospel preacher preaches to save.

What catches the eye in a magazine are the pictures not the words. Christianity is no different––people notice the ‘pictures’ of our lives far more than our words.

I may be a good actor or orator. I may be well-meaning, and I may know my stuff. the key question I must answer, however, before standing up to preach the Glad Tidings is 'Am I sent from God'?

Some people weep in the gospel just as readily as they do in the cinema.

81

A crooked generation needs a straight and narrow way.

God’s principles may first be relaxed, and then ignored, before finally being despised.

As a Christian I must think like Christ, talk like Christ, and act like Christ.

What Satan cannot destroy he will discredit.

The evidence may be undeniable, but science will still deny God.

Some read the Bible out of habit; better to read it on account of hunger.

What I am at home is a far better measure of my faith than what I am in ‘church’.

Love covers a multitude of sins; human nature delights in exposure.

In Christ there is no condemnation, under the law there was nothing but condemnation.

He who was the apostle of the enmity of man, became the apostle of the grace of God.

82

First pure, then peaceable is God’s order; first peaceable, then pure is Satan’s order. 

To introduce musical instruments into the service of God because we cannot sing well is really only to make things more pleasant for ourselves, and not for the Lord who knows our hearts.

God saves us from Satan (Col. 1: 13) from the world (Gal. 1: 4) and from sin (Rom. 7: 24).

A true preacher speaks as of God, before God, and in Christ (see 2 Cor. 2: 17).

Truth without love is like sunshine without warmth: just as the one cannot melt snow, so the other cannot melt hearts.

If God says it, then that settles it, and I must believe it.

For the soul trusting in Christ for salvation, the chasm between himself and God has not been bridged––it has been removed.

True Christianity is a living relationship with Christ––it is not simply a pious manner of life, however close it might seem to the NT pattern.

83

God is far more ready to hear than we are to ask.

To see His face is the deepest longing of His people. To be hid from His face (see Rev. 6: 16) will be the one desire of those left behind for judgment.

Men can only see our public side; God sees our private side––what we are really like.

If we expect great things of the brethren, then we shall often be disappointed. If we expect great things of the Lord we shall never be disappointed.

There are three mighty kings in Daniel 6. But neither the King of Persia, nor the King of Beasts could touch Daniel while he was in the care of the King of Kings,

It is in times of pressure that we find out how much we really know God.

Travel on the broad, downward road is easy. Travel on an upward, narrow path is difficult.

The moment of triumph is the moment of greatest danger. Thus while division over fundamental doctrine was averted in the early part of Acts 15, Satan succeeded in dividing God’s servants from one another in the latter part of the chapter––and for much less serious reasons.

We are left here to represent Christ. Our lives will either glorify Him or bring Him into disrepute, shed light or cast shadow.

84

In 1 Cor. 15: 9, Paul describes himself as “the least of the apostles”, in Eph. 3: 8 he is “less than the least of all saints”, and finally, in 1 Tim. 1: 15 he is the chief of sinners.

In God’s race, you should arrive at the end fitter than when you began.

Familiarity can interfere with our sense of wonder at all that God has done. Take time to reflect on ‘Amazing grace’.

Anyone can act out passages of Scripture––but we are to act them out in the power of God.

When Athanasius wrote his faithful statement of truth, he was told ‘The whole world is against you’. He answered ‘Then I am against the world!’ Are we ready for that?

Abraham had a stand–alone faith. Lot’s faith was somewhat second–hand and he went wrong the moment he stood alone.

This world’s books are soon read. The Bible is the only book you can never finish.

As we get older, sin should appear more awful, grace should be more wonderful, and our thanks more wholehearted.

Some churches are obsessed with making rules, others believe in a kind of ‘pious’ anarchy. God’s Assembly has its own house–law (see 1 Tim. 3: 15). We are not to add or take away from it.

There is only one fellowship in Scripture––the fellowship of God’s Son (see 1 Cor. 1: 9). That being so, I cannot see we have any licence in the Word for speaking of any other fellowship. It is to His fellowship that we are called, and everything else is vain. Let us shrink from even giving the slightest impression of having in our minds anything less than the divine thought.

85

It is one thing to be a disciple of God’s greatest servant (see John 1: 35–37), quite another to be a disciple of Christ.

‘I haven’t got time’ is a feeble excuse with regards to the Lord’s things. We must make time.

I have never met a soul in the good of the things of Christ who did not enjoy singing.

We do not know “what a day may bring forth” (Prov. 27: 1), but we do “know that all things work together for good to those who love God” (Rom. 8: 28).

In natural things, growth leads to independence. With the Christian, growth leads him to become ever more dependent on God.

Each individual ant is a tireless worker for the good of the whole colony. Similarly, self–interest ought to be foreign to a member of Christ’s body.

If the Bible has its true place in our lives, then so will Christ. If Christ has His true place in our lives, then so will the Bible.

The Lord must not only be important in our lives - He must be the centre-piece.

86

There is no reward from God to those who seek it from men.

Creation speaks of a designer, but Calvary speaks of a Saviour.

My ministry may be small, but in God’s eyes, never insignificant.

Our greatest lack is not enthusiasm for the Gospel, or understanding of the Scriptures, but personal acquaintance with Christ.

‘Is He coming?’ is a question followed by another: ‘Am I ready?’

Building up requires patience and skill. Breaking up requires neither.

Natural sunshine is invigorating. See if you can bring a little bit of spiritual sunshine into someone else’s life.

If God passes us through hardship, it is often because our hearts need softening.

With each passing year, the spiritual darkness around us only deepens. How cheering then to know that the day is at hand!

87

The Lord Jesus was born of a virgin––his mother had never known a man. He rode into Jerusalem on an ass upon which no man had ever sat before. Finally, He was laid to rest in a new tomb where no man had ever been laid (see Luke 1: 34; Mark 11: 2; Luke 23: 53)

Satan’s ministers of unrighteousness are often easily discerned but what about his ministers of righteousness? (see 2 Cor. 11: 15)

Man’s judgment of his ‘progress’ differs radically from God’s––civilisation is merely the refinement of sin.

If you neglect feeding upon the Bible––the Word of God––then you will inevitably lack spiritual power. Energy comes from food.

God never judges persons until their consciences have first judged them. The Lord did not drive the first man out of paradise until the man fled from His presence. Adam fled to hide himself from God, and God only sentenced him afterwards to what his own conscience had already sentenced him.

Christ should not be a small part of our lives, but nor a large part either. He is to be our life (see Phil. 1: 21).

This world is like a sandbank—shifting, unstable and dangerous. Put your trust in God’s rock—Christ.

88

There might be thousands of lambs but it was still the Passover. Similarly, there might be thousands of loaves, but it is still the Lord’s Supper.

The object of pressure is to bring me into company with the Lord.

We judge acts, God alone judges motives.

God can use my body but not my will.

If punishment of sin is not necessary and the benevolence of God alone could have met my case, then plainly Christ need not have died at all. 

“God is love” (1 John 4: 16) does not mean ‘God is indifferent to evil’.

Unity is not so much on the basis of one body as of one head.

Holding fast requires spiritual energy, giving up requires no energy at all.

89

If you do not pray, then you are like a man who had a friend but never spoke to him. If you do not read your Bible, then you are like a man who wouldn’t let his friend speak to him.

Abiding in a company may come naturally; abiding in Christ does not.

We can fool ourselves that our home is in heaven, but if our lives speak otherwise, then the world is not fooled. 

As men see things, the ministry of John the Baptist ended in abject failure. The all–important judgment of Christ, however, was that he bore “witness to the truth” (John 5: 33). 

The Lord Jesus drank a cup of sorrow alone so that we might share a cup of joy with Him.

Both looking back and looking ahead can have an effect on our living now. Both, too, can affect us for good or bad.

A personal relationship with the Saviour is a pressing need for the saint as well as the sinner.

As the day draws to its end, and the shadows of evil close around us, let us not forget that another, better day is coming.

In a desperate hour for his country, Winston Churchill offered nothing but blood, toil, tears and sweat. The language is also remarkably apt in describing the Christian’s passage through a dark and hostile world.

90

If we hold fast the head, we shall hold each other.

The Bible is a rock from which all the hammers of criticism have never chipped a single fragment.

If the Bible is trustworthy, then we must take seriously its claim to be more than trustworthy.

“It is better to trust in Jehovah than to put confidence in man” (Ps. 118: 8).

Getting a prediction right did not make a man a prophet in biblical terms. The test was far more stringent––he was never to get it wrong (see Deut. 18: 22).

If the earth got out of right relation with the Sun, disaster would be the inevitable result. So it is with Christ and the Assembly.

Men have their heroes – Christians are to be “imitators of God” (Eph. 5: 1).

Every believer is a priest and has direct access by the Spirit to God in prayer and praise. Show me a religious system that is not designed to thwart that access.

When Abraham and Isaac went to worship (see Gen. 22: 5) what was their focus? Death - the death of one that was loved!

91

“This man receives sinners” (Luke 15: 2).You can sneer at it, laugh at it, or thank God for it.

You may depend upon it that Scripture puts things far better than we can. It is much better to accept things as Scripture puts them than as we think they should be.

A doctrine cannot be proved by the number of its adherents, or by the length of time during which it has been received.

Strange fire (see Lev. 10: 1), in the present day, is whatever is not of the Holy Spirit.

The Father: “No one can come to me except the Father who has sent me draw him” (John 6: 44). The Son: “No one comes to the Father unless by me” (John 14: 6). The Holy Spirit: “no one can say, Lord Jesus, unless [in the power of the] Holy Spirit” (1 Cor. 12: 3).

Only those who worship within the veil, can live outside the camp.

If, like Lot, you have a tent without an altar, you will soon give up the tent.

There was no inventing in Eden for there was no need.

It takes a funeral to bring the Lord's people together these days - sadly, the showing forth of His death will not do it.

92

What God scatters, the devil unites; what God unites, the devil scatters.

We do not know what the future holds, but we know the One who holds the future.

Musical instruments, “lifeless things giving a sound” (1 Cor. 14: 7) originated with the line of Cain. Not until God’s people were redeemed (see Ex. 15) do we read of singing.

“A morning without clouds” (2 Sam. 23: 4)––when the glory of Christ can shine unhindered.

Attendance at the prayer meeting is a measure of our dependence.

Trials can bring the best out of us or the worst, what is of the Spirit, or what is of the flesh.

Critics come and go, but the Bible remains.

‘Just a forgiven sinner’ is man’s thought, not God’s. Man thinks only of mercy, God thinks also of grace (comp. Luke 15: 22–23).

The Bible presents Adam, the first man, as historic (see Gen. 5: 3; Luke 3: 38). Christians should not fall into the trap of using the expression "prehistoric man".

93

Worship is now entertainment, evangelism merely a branch of marketing, and conversion a question of meeting God on my own terms. What will be the end of these things?

“I will not leave thee”—wonderful promise—“I will not be afraid”—wonderful faith (Heb. 13: 5, 6).

Be wary of any Christian who reacts negatively to the Word of God—particularly those in positions of leadership.

God desires my blessing—that is a thought that bears much meditation.

If the Lord Himself ceases to be the object of ministry then some form of compromise will inevitably follow.

The understanding of Scripture depends as much on what is in the heart as on what is in the head, if not more so.

Some cause trouble and others avoid it. The way of faith is to face trouble and pursue peace.

The best ‘theological college’ is among the saints—reading the Bible together, praying together and worshipping together.

94

“For you”––there is His love; “in remembrance of me”––here is our response to it (1 Cor. 11: 24).

If you divorce the Gospel from the Church you will get evangelicalism rather than Scriptural Christianity.

One stone cannot make a building, nor do stones choose their own place in the building (see 1 Pet. 2: 5).

In Christianity there is a unity, not of a nation, and not only of family, but of the members of one body.

It is said that we are to accept lower standards today because circumstances are different to those our fathers experienced. Follow the logic through and we have a recipe for ever lower standards as each generation passes!

People speak about believing in God, but the Gospel really goes deeper than that. It is do you believe God ––believe what He has said?

God dwells not only in a “high and holy [place]” but also “with him that is of a contrite and humble spirit” (Is. 57: 15). We neglect this side of our Christian character to our loss.

95

What cannot be proved from Scripture cannot be necessary for our salvation.

The more we count our blessings, the more we realise that they are uncountable.

Sometimes we think that God isn't doing much in our day. We need to look behind the scenes.

Not only could we not pay the price of sin, we could not even measure the cost.

Increasingly, things are done, not because they are in the Bible, but because other Christians are doing them. The test is no longer ‘Is it Scriptural?’, but ‘Is it fashionable?’

Sight may have a reward but only in this world. Faith has a certain and glorious reward in the next.

‘What can I do?’ is not the same question as ‘What wilt thou have me to do?’

Relax and you will always give up. Holding fast requires constant, unremitting effort.

We live in strange times. To be in step with the Lord may involve being out of step with his people, being in step with His Word being out of step with their words.

96

Truth cannot live without warfare in a world away from God.
 
There is nothing more uplifting than to meet a soul who loves Christ.
 
Gift and spirituality are quite separate and distinct.
 
Not only could we not pay the price of sin, we could not even measure the cost.
 
That He offered Himself (see Heb. 9: 14) is wonderful beyond words. That such a One could do such a thing!
 
Following the herd is not the same as following the Shepherd.
 
The Word of God is like an arch of bricks. Knock out one brick and you never know which one will go next.
 
A house doesn’t fall apart overnight. It only does so because of years of neglect. So it is with things ecclesiastical.

97

The world is ripe for judgment. Is the Church ripe for rapture?

If you believe the Gospel is good news, how can you keep it to yourself?

How much there is to give God thanks for: what He has done for us, what He has done in us and what He has promised to us.

Tell me what you know of Christ and I will tell you where you are as to your Christian experience.

The Lord’s day is the LORD’S  day, whether you are on holiday or at home.

If churches cannot get people in, then “Go into all the world” (Mark 16: 15) might be the answer.

God loved the world (see John 3: 16), the Father loves the Son (see John 3: 35) and Christ loved the assembly (see Eph. 5: 25).

In the thirty years of His private life Christ set forth what a man was to God; in the three years of public ministry He set forth what God was to man.

We once heard a Christian remark of another, with gravity and a tinge of sadness, ‘Well, if we could buy that brother at the price we put upon him, and sell him again at the price he puts upon himself, we would make a huge profit!’

98

‘Someone advised me to’ will not sound good at the judgment seat of Christ! We need more personal communion with God.

It is one thing to be full of what you can do for Christ; it is better to be full of Christ.

Men preach tolerance until they are faced with biblical truth—at which point they become markedly intolerant.

We ought not to read Scripture as a formal task or duty but out of hunger.

A shared ecclesiastical history is an inadequate basis on which to form links of fellowship.

To be an ambassador for Christ you need to have been sent from the court of the King. Speaking for Christ is not the same as speaking on His behalf.

The same apostle who was used so that “all that inhabited Asia heard the word of the Lord” (Acts 19: 10), lived to pen the sad lament that “all who [are] in Asia ... have turned away from me” (2 Tim. 1: 15).

The flesh may set up to be energetic in service, to be profound in humility, to be intelligent in the things of God or to be devoted to Christ, but it will always break down.

99

Prayer flows from two things: a realisation that I can do nothing of myself, and an acknowledgement of One who can do everything. 

Some religions are feared. Christianity is hated.

God will not fail you. In fact, better than that, He cannot fail you.

Opposition to the truth is always bad, but when found in a Christian it is deplorable. 

Here was a man who was so very like us, and yet, how so very different—“the second man, out of heaven” (1 Cor. 15: 47).

Decline is characterised by letting things in and letting things go.

“Then they that feared Jehovah spoke often one to another” (Mal. 3: 16)—a necessity in a day of public breakdown and scattering.

If there was more brotherly love and less ecclesiastical posturing, then who knows what could be accomplished? 

100

Grace finds us wretched beggars but leaves us grateful debtors.

The Lord never took a journey, but to do the Father’s will.

The Gospel is not man seeking God, but God seeking man.

Is it just doctrine or is it waiting for the Son? 

The Christian road is rugged but that seems as nothing when we remember that it is the road home.

The best thermometer of your spiritual temperature is the intensity of your prayer.

Does the rapture fill your heart with rapture? 

Man is never ashamed of a religion that he himself can accomplish.

Moses is famed for the exodus he led; the Lord Jesus will shortly lead an even greater exodus from this world.

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