“Let the words of my mouth…be acceptable in Thy sight, O Lord” (Psalm 19:14).
How important it is to speak words that are good and true and pure. Timothy was told, “Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity” (1 Timothy 4:12).
These days it seems that so many (even those who say they are Christians) use terrible language. No swear words or off-color words should escape your lips, and we are never to use the name of the Lord in an irreverent way. God does not look lightly on using His name in a disrespectful or impertinent way. He warned His people in the Old Testament: “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh His name in vain” (Exodus 20:7).
Your language should show that you are a believer. That means we should talk as Christ talked—in love, compassion, and grace. Of Him we read, “And all bare Him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth” (Luke 2:22).
“How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver” (Proverbs 16:16).
This verse seems to contradict the idea that gold and silver are much more important and have higher value than anything else, which is the general consensus in the world. If you look on the precious metal commodity list you’ll find gold at the top and silver not far behind. By contrast you’ll never find wisdom being traded on the stock market. That’s because it’s not something you can buy with money. You can only get it from one place and not everyone has access to the source. “Christ; in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:2-3).
Wouldn’t you like some shares in wisdom? They’re free—and they reap dividends. “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him” (James 1:5). Daniel and his three friends had a good share in this stock, for we read: “As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom” (Daniel 1:17).
One of the most dreaded sentences a patient can hear is, “You have cancer.” These words bring a chill to the heart, and although great progress has been made in treating this disease, recovery can be long and painful, and many people, young and old, do not survive.
An enthusiastic young believer in Christ, by the name of Dan, lost his battle with cancer. But his life showed that even though the physical body may be destroyed by the disease, the spirit can remain triumphant. “For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day” (2 Corinthians 4:16). At his request the following was handed out at his memorial service.
Cancer is so limited…
It cannot cripple love, or shatter hope.
It cannot corrode faith, or eat away peace.
It cannot destroy confidence, or kill friendship.
It cannot shut out memories, or silence courage.
It cannot invade the soul, or reduce eternal life.
It cannot quench the Spirit.
It cannot lessen the power of resurrection.
What a wonderful testimony to the power of Christ!
When we are young we don’t think much about death and what lies beyond. At least I didn’t! I knew I was saved, and that if I died I would go to heaven, but beyond that I really have to admit, I didn’t give it a whole lot of thought.
However, here is an interesting statement from the lips of a dying youth that might be worth considering, even for readers who consider themselves “young people.”
“Think of me tomorrow as being the happiest person you ever heard of.”
It brings to mind the words of David, who so many centuries ago said, “In Thy presence is fulness of joy; at Thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore…As for me, I will behold Thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied, when I awake, with Thy likeness” (Psalm 16:11; 17:15).
I don’t suppose many of us count on dying this week, but if we do, how wonderful to know that we will be happy and satisfied beyond what we could ever imagine.
Yesterday’s question had to do with “the second death” (Revelation 20:14). What awful reality it will be for Christ rejecters and gospel neglecters when they are bound “hand and foot…and cast…into outer darkness” (Matthew 22:13).
It is important to understand that hell was never prepared for man, but is spoken of as “everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matthew 25:41). However, as we said yesterday, God is holy and cannot have sin in His presence. Scripture affirms, “Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity” (Habakkuk 1:13). Yet we find that God is not only holy, but “God is love” (1 John 4:8). His desire is for the blessing of sinners, not their eternal exile in the lake of fire. Through His Son, He has provided a way of blessing so that instead of going to hell, we can be with Him in the Father’s house. “God our Saviour, who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time” (1 Timothy 2:4-6).
Q. Why is the casting into hell of the unsaved referred to as “the second death” (Revelation 20:14)?
A. Death is spoken of in three ways in the Bible, and in each case it denotes the separation between two things.
Firstly, we are spiritually dead: “Your iniquities have separated between you and your God” (Isaiah 59:2).
Secondly, there is physical death: “The body without the spirit is dead” (James 2:26).
Finally, The “second death” will be eternal separation from a God of love in the Lake of Fire. What an awful condition it will be to be shut out forever with no hope or remedy! God is holy and cannot have sin in His presence. He will have no choice but to banish to hell those who refuse to have their sins washed in the blood of Christ
We want to make it clear that being cast into hell is in no way annihilation or ceasing to exist. Those who reject God’s salvation will continue in that dreadful place, of which it says, “hell fire: where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched” (Mark 9:47-48).
Today we live in a world where we are taught to question everything. But with the “Word of the Lord,” it is not so. We accept it and enjoy it by faith. “He that hath received His testimony hath set to his seal that God is true” (John 3:33). The sinner believes for salvation, the saint believes for the path of faith. God’s Word never changes! It is impossible for Him to lie! Amidst all the untruth that is propagated in a society where things are shaky, unsound and changing, it is a comfort and a joy to realize that we have the truth. Listen to the words of the Lord Jesus as He affirms, “Thy Word is truth” (John 17:17). We can rest with full assurance and utmost confidence on His Word. If He said it, we can believe it!
Read the Word prayerfully every day—digest it, meditate on it, walk in obedience to it, rest on it and let it be your guide, comfort, encouragement, food and refreshment. And remember again the words of the Lord Jesus as He told His disciples, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32).
I went to Hampton Court palace in England today. This luxurious edifice is best known and remembered as the home of Henry VIII and his six wives. As I listened to the audio tour and went from room to room and through the courtyard, I was intrigued by the history, the stories and the opulence of palace life at that time in Britain’s history. However, I came away realizing the emptiness of it all, the inability for it to satisfy the soul and make a person happy. In the Bible we read, “For He satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness” (Psalm 107:9). Yes, the Lord is the only one who can give lasting satisfaction, real happiness and true peace of mind.
Many of those who have lived behind palace walls, including Henry VIII, never enjoyed real peace of mind. They were always concerned about conspiracies that might threaten their power and sovereignty or even their life. The histories of the famous and great of this world are fascinating and glamorous, but many of them ended in great tragedy and, no doubt, many without Christ. How much better to have Him as our full supply for this life and the assurance of glory and the Father’s house for eternity.