• 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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We are not to be a Terminus Point for the Gospel

The Gospel for Real LifeJerry Bridges:

We are not to be a terminus point for the gospel, but rather a way station in its progress to the ends of the earth. God intends that everyone who has embraced the gospel become a part of the great enterprise of spreading the gospel. (The Gospel for Real Life, p. 186)

The Bosom of America is Open

George WashingtonGeorge Washington:

“The bosom of America is open to receive not only the Opulent and respectable Stranger, but the oppressed and persecuted of all Nations and Religions; whom we shall welcome to a participation of all our rights and privileges, if by decency and propriety of conduct they appear to merit the enjoyment.”

Communion with God

John OwenThe following excerpts are from one of John Owen’s finest devotional works. Here, Owen presents us with the truth that believers have, or may have, communion with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. According to Owen:

By nature, since the entrance of sin, no man hath any communion with God. He is light, we darkness; and what communion hath light with darkness? He is life; we are dead, — he is love, and we are enmity; and what agreement can there be between us? Men in such a condition have neither Christ, nor hope, nor God in the world, Eph. ii. 12; “being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them,” chap. iv. 18. Now, two cannot walk together, unless they be agreed, Amos iii. 3. Whilst there is this distance between God and man, there is no walking together for them in any fellowship or communion.

Our first interest in God was so lost by sin, as that there was left unto us (in ourselves) no possibility of a recovery. As we had deprived ourselves of all power for [returning], so God had not revealed any way of access unto himself; or that he could, under any consideration, be approached unto by sinners in peace. Not any work that God had made, not any attribute that he had revealed, could give the least light into such a dispensation. The manifestation of grace and pardoning mercy, which is the only door of entrance into any such communion, is not committed unto any but unto him alone in whom it is, by whom that grace and mercy was purchased, through whom it is dispensed, who reveals it from the bosom of the Father. Hence, this communion and fellowship with God is not in express terms mentioned in the Old Testament. The thing itself is found there; but the clear light of it, and the boldness of faith in it, is discovered in the gospel, and by the Spirit administered therein. By that Spirit, we have this liberty, 2 Cor. iii. 17, 18. Abraham was the friend of God, Isa. xli. 8; David, a man after his own heart; Enoch walked with him, Gen. v. 22; — all enjoying this communion and fellowship for the substance of it.

But the way into the holiest was not yet made manifest whilst the first tabernacle was standing, Heb. ix. 8. Though they had communion with God, yet they had not παῤῥησίαν, — a boldness and confidence in that communion. … But now in Christ we have boldness and access with confidence to God, Eph. iii. 12. This boldness and access with confidence, the saints of old were not acquainted with. By Jesus Christ alone, then … is this distance taken away. He hath consecrated for us a new and living way (the old being quite shut up), “through the vail, that is to say, his flesh,” Heb. x. 20; and “through him we have access by one Spirit unto the Father,” Eph. ii. 18. “Ye who sometimes were far off, are made nigh by the blood of Christ, for he is our peace,” etc., verses 13, 14. … Upon this new bottom and foundation, by this new and living way, are sinners admitted into communion with God, and have fellowship with him. And truly, for sinners to have fellowship with God, the infinitely holy God, is an astonishing dispensation. (Of Communion with God the Father, Son and Holy Ghost)

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