Evening Devotional

“Ah Lord God, behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee.”

Jer 32:17

At the very time when the Chaldeans surrounded Jerusalem, and when the sword, famine and pestilence had desolated the land, Jeremiah was commanded by God to purchase a field, and have the deed of transfer legally sealed and witnessed. This was a strange purchase for a rational man to make. Prudence could not justify it, for it was buying with scarcely a probability that the person purchasing could ever enjoy the possession. But it was enough for Jeremiah that his God had bidden him, for well he knew that God will be justified of all his children. He reasoned thus: “Ah, Lord God! thou canst make this plot of ground of use to me; thou canst rid this land of these oppressors; thou canst make me yet sit under my vine and my fig-tree in the heritage which I have bought; for thou didst make the heavens and the earth, and there is nothing too hard for thee.” This gave a majesty to the early saints, that they dared to do at God's command things which carnal reason would condemn. Whether it be a Noah who is to build a ship on dry land, an Abraham who is to offer up his only son, or a Moses who is to despise the treasures of Egypt, or a Joshua who is to besiege Jericho seven days, using no weapons but the blasts of rams' horns, they all act upon God's command, contrary to the dictates of carnal reason; and the Lord gives them a rich reward as the result of their obedient faith. Would to God we had in the religion of these modern times a more potent infusion of this heroic faith in God. If we would venture more upon the naked promise of God, we should enter a world of wonders to which as yet we are strangers. Let Jeremiah's place of confidence be ours-nothing is too hard for the God that created the heavens and the earth.

~ Charles H. Spurgeon ~

 

The Word of God

But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

— Ps. 1:2

This verse does not simply declare (as I have said elsewhere) that those who fear God are blessed; it equates religion with the study of the law. It teaches that God is rightly worshiped only if his Word is obeyed. Therefore, men are not free to model a religion, each after his own idea. The standard for religion must be taken from God’s Word.

The law only is mentioned here: but we are not to suppose that the rest of Scripture is ignored, since all of it is really an interpretation of the law and so is included under that title. The prophet is commending the law with its supplement. Indeed, as I just said, the faithful are here urged to read The Psalms.

But the first thing required of the faithful is delight in the law of the Lord. These words show us that compulsory or slavish worship is not at all acceptable to God. Only those who come happily to the study of the law, who enjoy its teaching, who think nothing more worthwhile or pleasanter than to make progress in it, are qualified students of the law.

From this love of the law comes constant meditation on it, as the prophet immediately adds. Only those inspired by this love can devote themselves to its constant study.

~ John Calvin ~

 

Heaven’s Relief in the Coming Wrath

It is just to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to grant relief to you who are afflicted . . . when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.

— 2 Thessalonians 1:6–8

There will come a time when the patience of God is over. When God has seen his people suffer for the allotted time and the appointed number of martyrs is complete (Revelation 6:11), then vengeance will come from heaven.

Notice that God’s vengeance on our offenders is experienced by us as “relief.” In other words, the judgment on “those who afflict” us is a form of grace toward us.

Perhaps the most remarkable picture of judgment as grace is the picture of Babylon’s destruction in Revelation 18. At her destruction, a great voice from heaven cries, “Rejoice over her, O heaven, and you saints and apostles and prophets, for God has given judgment for you against her!” (Revelation 18:20). Then a great multitude is heard saying, “Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God, for his judgments are true and just; for he has judged the great prostitute who corrupted the earth with her immorality, and has avenged on her the blood of his servants” (Revelation 19:1–2).

When God’s patience has run its long-suffering course, and this age is over, and judgment comes on the enemies of God’s people, the saints will not disapprove of God’s justice.

This means that the final destruction of the unrepentant will not be experienced as a misery for God’s people.

The unwillingness of others to repent will not hold the affections of the saints hostage. Hell will not be able to blackmail heaven into misery. God’s judgment will be approved, and the saints will experience the vindication of truth as a great grace.

~ John Piper ~

 

Morning Devotional

“And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them.”

Joh 17:22

Behold the superlative liberality of the Lord Jesus, for he hath given us his all. Although a tithe of his possessions would have made a universe of angels rich beyond all thought, yet was he not content until he had given us all that he had. It would have been surprising grace if he had allowed us to eat the crumbs of his bounty beneath the table of his mercy; but he will do nothing by halves, he makes us sit with him and share the feast. Had he given us some small pension from his royal coffers, we should have had cause to love him eternally; but no, he will have his bride as rich as himself, and he will not have a glory or a grace in which she shall not share. He has not been content with less than making us joint-heirs with himself, so that we might have equal possessions. He has emptied all his estate into the coffers of the Church, and hath all things common with his redeemed. There is not one room in his house the key of which he will withhold from his people. He gives them full liberty to take all that he hath to be their own; he loves them to make free with his treasure, and appropriate as much as they can possibly carry. The boundless fulness of his all-sufficiency is as free to the believer as the air he breathes. Christ hath put the flagon of his love and grace to the believer's lip, and bidden him drink on for ever; for could he drain it, he is welcome to do so, and as he cannot exhaust it, he is bidden to drink abundantly, for it is all his own. What truer proof of fellowship can heaven or earth afford?

“When I stand before the throne

Dressed in beauty not my own;

When I see thee as thou art,

Love thee with unsinning heart;

Then, Lord, shall I fully know-

Not till then-how much I owe.”

~ Charles H. Spurgeon ~