MARCH 22

 

If we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world—1 Cor. 11: 31, 32.

 

The ascertainment of gains and losses as Christians, and how and  when and where these came to us in the constant battle with the world, the flesh and the devil, will surely profit all who make such reckonings with an eye single to the pleasement of the Lord. Spiritual Israelites are to live a daily, an hourly life of nearness to the High Priest. The blood of the dear Redeemer is to be continually invoked for the cleansing of the slightest defilement of conscience, that thus the garment of our Lord's imputed righteousness may not become draggled, but that the slightest spot being removed, we may have it "without spot or wrinkle or any such thing".

 

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To judge one's self, means such an inspection, criticism and regulation of one's conduct as keeps him in the love of God. Such who so do are faithful Christians and do not need constantly to be driven on by the scourge of chastisement. Yet, if we are remiss in such activity, the Lord, in seeking to reform us, resorts to the rod of chastisement to prevent our becoming reprobates, and to secure our reformation.

 

Parallel passages: Job 13: 23; Psa. 4: 4; 19: 12; 26: 2; 77: 6; 119: 59; 139: 23, 24; Jer. 17: 9; Lam. 3: 40; Hag. 1: 7; Matt. 26: 22; 1Cor. 5: 7, 8; 11: 27-29; 2Cor. 13: 5; Gal. 6: 3; Psa. 32: 5; 94: 12; Heb. 12: 5-13; 1Pet. 2: 20; Rev. 2: 5, 16; 3: 2, 3, 19.

 

Questions: What have been this week's experiences in line with this text? How were they borne? In what did they result?

 

PERFECT THROUGH SUFFERING

 

GOD never would send you the darkness,

If He felt you could bear the light;

But you would not cling to His guiding hand,

If the way were always bright;

And you would not care to walk by faith,

Could you always walk by sight.

 

'Tis true He hath many an anguish,

For your sorrowful heart to bear,

And many a cruel thorn-crown,

For your poor, tired head to wear;

 He knows how few would reach heaven at all,

If pain did not guide them there.

 

So He sends you the blinding darkness,

And the furnace of seven-fold heat:

'Tis the only way, believe me,

To keep you close to His feet—

For 'tis always so easy to wander,

When our lives are glad and sweet.

 

Then nestle your hand in your Father's

And sing, if you can, as you go;

Your song may cheer some one behind you,

Whose courage is sinking low;

And, well, if your lips do quiver—

God will love you better so.

 

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