TEMPTATION

John OwenJohn Owen:

And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.’” Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him. (Matthew 4:9-11 ESV)

Our great Pattern hath showed us what our deportment ought to be in all suggestions and temptations. When the devil showed Him “all the kingdoms of the world and the glory of them,” to tempt Him withal, He did not stand and look upon them, viewing their glory, and pondering their empire…. but instantly, without stay, He cries, “Get thee hence, Satan.” Meet thy temptation in its entrance with thoughts of faith concerning Christ on the cross; this will make it sink before thee. Entertain no parley, no dispute with it, if thou wouldst not enter into it.

CHRISTIANS

John FlavelJohn Flavel:

I think it is not very difficult to discern by the duties and conversations of Christians, what frames their spirits are under. Take a Christian in a good frame, and how serious, heavenly, and profitable, will his conversations and duties be! What a lovely companion is he during the continuance of it!

 

 

RIGHTEOUSNESS

John BunyanJohn Bunyan:

“But one day, as I was passing in the field, and that too with some dashes [matters or sins] on my conscience, fearing lest yet all was not right, suddenly this sentence fell upon my soul, Thy righteousness is in heaven; and I thought withal, I saw, with the eyes of my soul, Jesus Christ at God’s right hand; there, I say, as my righteousness; so that wherever I was, or whatever I was doing, God could not say of me, He lacks my righteousness, for that [my righteousness] was just before him.  I also saw, moreover, that it was not my good frame of heart that made my righteousness better, nor yet was my bad frame that [which] made my righteousness worse; for my righteousness – Jesus Christ himself, the same yesterday, today, and forever.” (Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners, 35-36)

SANCTIFICATION

SanctificationStrive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. (Hebrews 12:14 ESV)

For this is the will of God, your sanctification: (1 Thessalonians 4:3 ESV)

Two words that are not used often in our modern culture are the words “sanctify” and “sanctification”. These words leave a bad taste in the mouths of many. They invoke images of people who act “holier than thou”. The world is quick to label Christians as “hypocrites”.

However, the subject of sanctification should be important to every Christian. For the Christian, sanctification begins with regeneration. Once we have been born again, there will be a definite moral change. We no longer desire to yield to the slavery of sin and we are no longer under the dominion of sin. We are sanctified in Christ, but “progressive sanctification” will continue throughout our lives. We must now yield to the leading of the Holy Spirit to become more like Christ.

Continuing growth in sanctification, however, is no guarantee of moral perfection in this lifetime. Paul writes to the Romans: “Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness.” (Romans 6:12-13 ESV) Continue reading

CHRISTIAN CONTENTMENT

Jeremiah Burroughs:

Christian contentment is that sweet, inward, quiet, gracious frame of spirit, which freely submits to and delights in God’s wise and fatherly disposal in every condition.

 

 

A LIFE OF PRAISE

Richard SibbesRichard Sibbes:

The whole life of a Christian should be nothing but praises and thanks to God; we should neither eat nor sleep, but eat to God and sleep to God and work to God and talk to God, do all to His glory and praise.

 

 

THE MAN WHO DOES NOT CARE TO PRAY

Charles SpurgeonCharles H. Spurgeon:
“No man has such need to pray as the man who does not care to pray. When you can pray and long to pray—why, then, you will pray! But when you cannot pray and do not wish to pray—why, then, you must pray, or evil will come of it! He is on the brink of ruin who forgets the Mercy Seat. When the heart is apathetic towards prayer, the whole man is sickening from a grievous disease. How can we be weary of prayer? It is essential to life! When a man grows weary of breathing, surely he is near to dying! When a man grows weary of praying, surely we ought to pray anxiously for him, for he is in an evil case.” (1891, Sermon #2189)
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