Ezekiel was given a prophetic vision of the millennial temple, from whence our Lord Jesus shall reign over all the earth. Then “the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.” But it will not detract from that future scene of blessing to remind ourselves that for us now, those waters picture God’s abounding grace toward His own. Our Lord told the Samaritan woman that “whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life,” and His gracious invitation to all is, “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters,” “and whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” And as we come to Him and go on with Him, we learn that “where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.” As we “grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,” we learn that His grace is all-sufficient, “a river that I could not pass over … waters to swim in.”
“Rivers of living water” flow From the Person of our Lord; “Waters to swim in,” depth untold, Come forth from the living Word.
“The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with His hand.” God is genuinely concerned about His redeemed children and wants to lead us “in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake,” and “if any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine.” So we are told to “be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.” He has promised that “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with Mine eye.” “Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” “Ye shall observe to do therefore as the Lord your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.” So “show me Thy ways, O Lord; teach me Thy paths. Lead me in Thy truth, and teach me: for Thou art the God of my salvation; on Thee do I wait all the day,” and He promises that when we “in all thy ways acknowledge Him … He shall direct thy paths.”
I would walk in the ways of the Lord, Trusting Him to lead and to guide, For His Word is a lamp to my feet, Trustworthy, whatever betide.
What God has purposed and promised, He will fulfill, in spite of all the liberals and atheists and unbelievers. “Surely the wrath of man shall praise Thee: the remainder of wrath shalt Thou restrain.” This is to say that God will fulfill His purposes in the world and with His own people in spite of all opposition. “We can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth,” and He “worketh all things after the counsel of His own will.” He “is wonderful in counsel, and excellent in working,” and “hath He said, and shall He not do it? Or hath He spoken, and shall He not make it good?” And all this is “according to the working of His mighty power, which He wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places … and hath put all things under His feet.” “The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand.” “I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like Me, declaring the end from the beginning … saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure,” “for I will hasten My word to perform it.”
God’s Word is very, very sure; What He promises, He’ll do; Satan and men may oppose Him; He’ll see His promises through.
“The law of the Spirit,” the principle by which the Spirit works in our lives as Christians, is that “of life in Christ Jesus.” Though we are told that “if we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit” and that we are to “walk in the Spirit, and [so] shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh,” the Holy Spirit does not thus enable us to live for God’s glory by calling our attention to Himself. Rather, He directs our hearts to Another, the Lord Jesus Christ, and keeps us “looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith.” The purpose of our being “strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man” is “that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.” Our Lord said that the Holy Spirit “shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you.” If we have “the righteousness of the law … fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit,” it is because the Spirit is actualizing in us “life in Christ Jesus,” pointing us to “Christ, who is our life.”
The Spirit points us to the Lord, By whose grace we’ve been made free; His life within gives us the power To live for eternity.
“God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord … but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God.” “The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the Lord shall be safe,” so “be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, He it is that doth go with thee; He will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.” In all confidence, the redeemed child of God can say, “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” And “though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me.” We may rest our hearts on His promise: “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” “I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.”
God has not put fear in our hearts; He taketh our fears away; He gives us His peace and quietness; He changes our night to day.
“No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared Him.” “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him; and without Him was not anything made that was made. In Him was life; and the life was the light of men. … And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us … full of grace and truth.” He is “the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me,” and “he that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.” “Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son. Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: [but] he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.” “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life; and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him,” “that all men should honor the Son, even as they honor the Father. He that honoreth not the Son honoreth not the Father which hath sent Him.” The Son of God said that “no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me.”
God’s only begotten Son Came into the world to save, Crucified for all our sins, And raised by God from the grave.
“Jehovah-jireh” means “Jehovah will provide,” or “the Lord will provide.” And not only did He provide Abraham with a ram for a burnt offering, He continually provides all His own with all that they need, spiritually and materially. “God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work.” “The Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly,” for “the eye of the Lord is upon them that fear Him, upon them that hope in His mercy; to deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine. Our soul waiteth for the Lord: He is our help and our shield.” “I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content,” for “my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” “O fear the Lord, ye His saints: for there is no want to them that fear Him. The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing.” “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.”
He provideth all that we need, As we journey from earth to heaven; Graciously and abundantly It from His hand is given.
Just as one may see his face reflected in water, so, as he looks into his own heart, he sees that which is also in the hearts of others. As far as any inherent righteousness is concerned, we “are all under sin; as it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: there is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God,” “for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” As for us who are saved by God’s grace, we all still have to confess that “I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good, I find not.” Do we excuse things in ourselves which we condemn in others? If things are sinful in others, they are sinful in us also. If things permitted by others seem hateful or questionable, they are hateful and questionable in us too. “Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man … for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.” And as we long in our own hearts for understanding and comfort and encouragement, let us remember that others have the same needs, “knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.”
Do we look upon others with scorn, Thinking we’re better than they? Forgetting we’re all as nothing, Needing God’s grace every day?
A good runner does not have his eye upon the other contestants in the race, but on the goal, and we who know the Lord as Savior, and are thus in the Christian race, should be constantly “looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. … I therefore so run, not as uncertainly … but I keep under my body and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway” for a reward. “None of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy.” “Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” “Draw me, we will run after Thee.”
I would run the race with patience, To honor my Savior-Friend, Looking off always to Jesus, A reward for Him to win.
“Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,” for “we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.” So “by Him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name,” for “it is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord, and to sing praises unto Thy name, O Most High: to show forth thy loving-kindness in the morning, and Thy faithfulness every night.” It behooves us who have been redeemed to praise His name, for “He hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord.” So “rejoice in the Lord, O ye righteous: for praise is comely for the upright,” and the Lord says that “whoso offereth praise glorifieth Me: and to him that ordereth his conversation aright will I show the salvation of God.” Let us then, by His enabling grace, “in everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” “I will sing unto the Lord as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.”
“Praise is comely for the upright,” From the heart that’s been made new, Praise for mercies freely given, Sent down on us as the dew.