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  • Samuel at Gilgal

    This year I will be sharing brief excerpts from the articles, sermons, and books I am currently reading. My posts will not follow a regular schedule but will be published as I find well-written thoughts that should be of interest to maturing Christian readers. Whenever possible, I encourage you to go to the source and read the complete work of the author.

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Assurance In Prayer

Do we not all seek assurance that our prayers will be answered? Yet, we wonder if it can truly be known. In acquiring such information, much depends upon the mode of God’s dealing with the soul. God’s secret work, as well as the matter of Biblical revelation, must be taken into account when seeking assurance in prayer. Dr. John Kennedy has written:

“The secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him.”Psalm 25:14

A mere outside Christian is an utter stranger to . . . the special application of the statements or promises of the Bible. He judges that communion with the Lord is a one-sided matter. He thinks that in dealing with the Hearer of prayer the speaking is all on his side. He is so enamored of his own utterances that he cares not whether God speaks or not. But it is far otherwise with those who truly fear the Lord. It is when they hear the Lord’s voice speaking words of truth and mercy that they can venture to utter words of faith and hope. “Take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth; for I have hoped in thy judgments.” “Cause me to hear thy loving-kindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust.” “Be not silent to me.” “The companions hearken unto thy voice; cause me to hear it.” There are times when, in the face of His silence, as surely as in the face of His frown, they who fear Him cannot advance nor speak to the Lord. And when they have presented their suit, they look up for an answer in peace. This, in the meantime, the Lord often gives them by a word in season spoken to their heart. It may, sometimes, please Him not to give any intimation of His acceptance of their prayer till the time for granting their request has come. . . .

They who fear the Lord are not blind, as others are, to the indications of His mind in the dealing of His providence. They are acquainted, as others are not, with the principles of His moral government. They have the sensitiveness of spiritual life under the workings of His great hand, while others lie unaffected in death. They watch and walk with God, while others live without Him in the world. They speak to Him about His doings, and He speaks to them, while others are dumb and deaf before Him. Shall they not, therefore, know the bearings of God’s providence as others cannot? May not one, who fears the Lord, who is much given unto prayer, whose heart is charged with care about the interests of the cause of Christ, who watches over the movements of providence with a feeling of intense interest, who looks on God’s works in the light of His word, and of His recorded antecedents, and who has acquired the blessed habit of speaking about His doings to the Lord Himself, seem to penetrate a future, all dark to others, as with a seer’s eye, while, with all truth and honesty, he may disclaim being either a prophet or the son of one? They are little acquainted with the ways of God, who imagine God has ceased to give His people assurance. . . . (“The Secret of the Lord”)

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