Sunday, January 19, 2014

Pure Words

By Warren Wiersbe

Read Psalm 12:1-8 

When you feel deserted, alone in standing for what's right, read Psalm 12. The emphasis in this psalm is on words, on speaking. First, David speaks in prayer (vv. 1-3). Where are the godly? People today don't want to take a stand for the truth, but David stood for what is right.

Sometimes we feel the faithful have disappeared--those who believe in prayer, giving and commitment. Today's generation doesn't believe in commitment, especially with our words. We hear so much empty talk, lies and flattery. Flattery is manipulative, not communicative, like our advertising and some of our preaching.

Second, the wicked speak in pride (v. 4). Never underestimate the power of speech. Jesus told the truth; His enemies argued. He gave words of life; they rejected Him. He came in love; they crucified Him. One of the evidences that a person is giving the truth of God's Word is that he is rejected. People don't want to hear truth unless they belong to truth (John 10:4).

Third, God speaks in promise (vv. 5,7). His words are pure, not empty lying (v. 6). But the words of the wicked will burn in the furnace. God's Word is precious, because it cost Jesus' life. It is proved (v. 6) and permanent (v. 7). He keeps His promises. God knows where His people are, and He helps them. "I will arise"; "I will protect"; "I can be trusted" (vv. 5-7).

So much that is spoken in this world is untrue and empty talk. Be encouraged that God speaks in promise. His Word is pure and true. When you are surrounded by lies, rest on the promises of the Bible.

Humble yourselves therefore

By A.B. Simpson

The pressure of hard places makes us value life. Every time we come through such a trial, it is like a new beginning, and we learn better how much life is worth and make more of it for God and man. The pressure helps us to understand the trials of others and fits us to help and sympathize with them. 

There is a shallow, superficial nature that gets hold of a theory or a promise and talks very glibly about the distrust of those who shrink from every trial. But the man or woman who has suffered much never does this. Knowing what suffering really means, he or she is very tender and gentle. This is what Paul meant when he said, Death worketh in us, but life in you (2 Corinthians 4:12). Trials and hard places are needed to press us forward, even as the furnace fires in the hold of the mighty steamship give the force that moves the Piston, drives the engine and propels that great vessel in the face of winds and waves.

Desperate Days

By Mrs. Charles E. Cowman

"But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him." (Heb. 11:6).

The faith for desperate days.

The Bible is full of such days. Its record is made up of them, its songs are inspired by them, its prophecy is concerned with them, and its revelation has come through them.

The desperate days are the stepping-stones in the path of light. They seem to have been God's opportunity and man's school of wisdom.

There is a story of an Old Testament love feast in Psalm 107, and in every story of deliverance the point of desperation gave God His chance. The "wit's end" of desperation was the beginning of God's power. Recall the promise of seed as the stars of heaven, and as the sands of the sea, to a couple as good as dead. Read again the story of the Red Sea and its deliverance, and of Jordan with its ark standing mid-stream. Study once more the prayers of Asa, Jehoshaphat, and Hezekiah, when they were sore pressed and knew not what to do. Go over the history of Nehemiah, Daniel, Hosea, and Habakkuk. Stand with awe in the darkness of Gethsemane, and linger by the grave in Joseph's garden through those terrible days. Call the witnesses of the early Church, and ask the apostles the story of their desperate days.

Desperation is better than despair.

Faith did not make our desperate days. Its work is to sustain and solve them. The only alternative to a desperate faith is despair, and faith holds on and prevails.

There is no more heroic example of desperate faith than that of the three Hebrew children. The situation was desperate, but they answered bravely, "Our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning, fiery furnace; and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up." I like that, "but if not !"

I have only space to mention Gethsemane. Ponder deeply its "Nevertheless." "If it is possible...nevertheless!" Deep darkness had settled upon the soul of our Lord. Trust meant anguish unto blood and darkness to the descent of hell--Nevertheless! Nevertheless!!

Now get your hymn book and sing your favorite hymn of desperate faith. --Rev. S. Chadwick

"When obstacles and trials seem
Like prison walls to be,
I do the little I can do
And leave the rest to Thee.

"And when there seems no chance, no change,
From grief can set me free,
Hope finds its strength in helplessness,
And calmly waits for Thee."