Echoes of Grace: 1954-1955

Table of Contents

1. January
2. Against a Thorn
3. A Happy New Year
4. A Free Ticket
5. ”Today”
6. You Need the Blood
7. Deliver Him!
8. Reveal Thyself to Me!”
9. Seek and Find
10. February
11. The Broken Arm
12. Given up!
13. I Don’t Feel Right”
14. The Work and the Word
15. God Giveth the Increase
16. The Precious Love of Christ
17. March
18. Take Heed
19. Though Your Sins Be As Scarlet”
20. God Loves You
21. What Think Ye of Christ?
22. Happy in Christ
23. One Minute
24. The Man We Forget
25. Insensibility
26. Faith
27. April
28. God's Love
29. Christ in Japan
30. What Then?
31. Moment by Moment”
32. My Debt
33. Procrastination
34. Under a Curse
35. Nothing
36. May
37. God's Boundary
38. Arrested
39. God’s Remedy
40. Heavenly Goods”
41. The Lord Hearkened
42. ”Let Us Alone”
43. “Wrath to Come”
44. Man’s Responsibility
45. M. R.
46. True Happiness
47. June
48. He Saved a Poor Sinner Like Me
49. Back From the Brink of Hell
50. Suddenly”
51. Believe”… “Are”… “All”
52. Broken Cisterns
53. No Drink in Hell
54. A Sinner Saved
55. “Live While You Live
56. God Gives”
57. July
58. Once and Now
59. Quickly Passing
60. Solid Ground
61. Wrong Thoughts Set Right
62. Extract
63. Now - Hereafter - Never
64. What Kind of a Vessel Are You?
65. Three Travelers
66. The Way Through
67. Apples of Gold
68. Mighty to Save
69. Decision for Christ
70. August
71. A Vain Search
72. The Light
73. The Touch of Faith
74. God's Gospel Letter
75. Energy, Mercy, Rest
76. The Gospel Call in Song
77. The Remedy
78. Time - Eternity
79. Promises and Facts
80. September
81. Made Clean!
82. “That’s Me!”
83. What Am I Living for?
84. A Basket of Grapes
85. His Own
86. From Death to Life
87. Truth in the Inward Parts
88. Extract
89. God’s Heart vs. Man’s Heart
90. Satisfied
91. October
92. Saved
93. Wondrous Grace
94. A Savior
95. God’s Handwriting
96. Old Betty
97. Your Portion
98. The Look of Faith
99. November
100. Remembered No More
101. A Wooden Leg
102. ”Have You a Mother?”
103. Yourself or Himself
104. Two Blessings
105. After Forty Years
106. Faith
107. For My Neighbor
108. My History
109. Calmed by a Storm
110. The Road of a Conversion
111. God Is Love”
112. Extract
113. December
114. ”Anno Domini”
115. From Here to There”
116. Peace, Perfect Peace
117. Beneath the Surface
118. “God My Savior”
119. A Tent Door Blessing
120. Vanity of Vanities”

January

Against a Thorn

(2 Cor. 12:7-9)
(Found among the papers of our beloved brother, J. W. Penfield, after his departure to be "with Christ.")
"Once I heard a note of sweetness
As it deft the morning air,
Sounding in its blest completeness
Like a tender, pleading prayer.
Then I sought to find the singer
Whence the wondrous song was borne;—
And I found a bird sore wounded,
Pinioned by a cruel thorn.

"I have seen a soul in sadness
While its wings with pain were furled,
Giving hope, and cheer, and gladness
That should bless a 'weeping world.
And I knew that life of sweetness
Was of grief and sorrow born:—
And a stricken soul was singing
With its heart against a thorn.

"Ye are told of One who loved you,
Of a Savior crucified;
Ye are told of nails that pinioned,
Of a spear that pierced His side.
Ye are told of cruel scourgings,
Of a Savior bearing scorn;
And He died for your salvation,
With His brow against a thorn!

"Ye are not above the Master!
Will you breathe a sweet refrain?
And His grace will be sufficient
When your heart is pierced with pain.
Will you live to bless His loved ones,
Though your life be bruised and torn?—
Like the bird that sang so sweetly,
With its heart against a thorn!”

A Happy New Year

"A happy New Year to you!" This salutation greets us as we walk down the street on this first day of the New Year. Bright and happy it seems, for the sun, as if desirous of ushering in the New Year becomingly, is shining with even some pretense of warmth.
But our business this morning is not in the broad, sunny street. We turn into a narrow, dark court and reach the door of our destination—the last house in the court where, we have been told, a man is dying. We knock at the door, and it is partly opened by a tall, gaunt, famished-looking woman with a child in her arms. She peers cautiously out at us through the aperture. At last, apparently satisfied with our friendly intent, she opens the door and bids us enter.
We now learn that the husband has been ill with rheumatic fever for nearly four weeks. A child also is in bed upstairs with a fever, and the one she holds in her arms has but lately recovered. "You'll excuse me," says she, "for I am quite weak myself." And she sinks wearily into a chair.
Mounting the creaking stairs we enter the room above and see the husband. There, propped up in bed, sits the object of our visit—a man about forty-five years old. Though the frail form is cushioned with pillows, his brows shadowing feverish eyes are knit with pain. Beside him on the bed lies the child who is "down with the fever.”
"A happy New Year"? What a solemn irony the words would contain if we pronounced them here! Happiness? The poverty; the agony; the quick, short breath; the poor hands with joints knotted out of shape; the clammy sweat upon the sick man's brow! We are full of pity as we gaze upon his distorted hands. He stretches them out as mute witnesses of his suffering, and then thrusts them beneath the covers to keep them warm.
He has not slept much during his long illness, and is about worn out. In fact, last midnight he made sure he was dying, he says.
We sympathize with him in his suffering. Then, looking to the Lord for guidance, we ask him gently how it would have fared with his soul if he had indeed died at twelve o'clock last night.
The sick man turns a quick, searching glance upon us as if no one had ever before questioned him as to his soul's salvation. Then slowly, between the short breaths, comes the answer: "It would have been all right.”
“Then you have," we eagerly reply, "got hold of the Lord Jesus Himself as your Savior?”
"I have," says the sick man; "leastways, He's got hold of me.”
"Thank God for that! How long have you known it—or, rather, Him?”
"Since this morning, sir, shortly after midnight." "Then this is a happy New Year to you?”
"It is indeed, sir." And we praise the Lord together.
Somehow the court does not seem so bad after all as we leave it. Now ringing in our hearts, with a deeper meaning than ever before perhaps, are the words: "A happy New Year! A happy New Year!”
And, dear one, how is it with you? Can you look back to the time when you by grace, as a poor lost sinner, took shelter beneath the blood of Christ? Can you say, "Yes, thank God; it is all right with me"? If not, remember that one thing, and one alone, can meet the claims of a holy and sin-hating God—the precious blood of Jesus.
To Israel, on the day that they took shelter from the destroyer beneath the blood of the Passover Lamb, God declared: "This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you." Ex. 12:2. That was their happy new year's day.
Happy too are they who know that Christ, their Passover, is slain, and that they, cleansed and sheltered by His blood, can now keep the feast. What a portion is theirs!
"Happy art thou, O Israel: who is like unto thee, O people saved by the LORD!" Deut. 33:29.
Dear one, may such a HAPPY NEW YEAR be yours.

A Free Ticket

"I cannot understand why a man who has tried to lead a good, moral life should not stand a better chance of getting to heaven than a wicked one," said a lady while talking with others about the matter of salvation.
"Simply for this cause," answered one. "Suppose you and I wanted to go into a place of interest where the admission fee was one dollar. You had fifty cents and I had nothing. Which would stand the better chance of admission?”
"Neither," was the positive reply.
"Just so. Therefore the moral man stands no better chance than the out broken sinner. But now suppose a kind and rich person who saw our perplexity presented a ticket of admission to each of us at his own expense! What then?”
"Well, then, we could both go in alike; that is dear.”
"Exactly. And when the Savior saw our perplexity, He came, He died, and thus 'obtained eternal redemption for us.' (Heb. 9:12.) Now He offers you and me both a free ticket. Only take good care that your fifty cents does not make you so proud that you refuse the free ticket, and so fail to be admitted at last.”
Dear young reader, there is a solemn moment coming! Have you the ticket of admission?
"The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Rom. 6:23.
"He that believeth on the Son path everlasting life." John 3:36.
"To whom sware He that they should not enter into His rest, but to them that believed not? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief." Heb. 3:18,19.

”Today”

Man thinks and says, Tomorrow will do just as well as today to be saved. God says Today; but where does He say Tomorrow?
Today the arrow of death is abroad, and every hour we live it is calculated that one thousand immortal beings pass into eternity.
If death came to you where you are, as you are right now, and laying his icy finger upon your pulse stopped its beating, and laying his hand upon your heart stopped its throbbing, and breathing upon your now warm blood froze it in your veins, ARE YOU READY?
"Today" the second coining of the Lord Jesus Christ may take place. If it should, He would raise the bodies of all "the dead in Christ," and change the living bodies of all who have eternal life in Him, accomplishing all "in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye.”
Should the second coming of the Lord take place while you are reading this little paper, ARE YOU READY?
None of those—NO, NOT ONE—that have heard the gospel of salvation "TODAY" and have been guilty of rejecting it, will have the ghost of a chance of being saved after Christ has come and taken His own blood-redeemed ones with Him to glory. (2 Thess. 2:10-12.)
The Holy Ghost says, in Psa. 95:7,8, "TODAY if ye will hear His voice, harden not your heart"; and Jesus says, in Luke 19:5, "MAKE HASTE, and come down; for TODAY I must abide at thy house.”
"Today" life, light, and glory forever are offered in the gospel, for only believing in the Person and work of Christ as a lost and helpless sinner.
Tomorrow may be death, darkness, and damnation forever should you refuse. Which is it to be? God grant it may be the first, and not the last! May it be said of you, dear reader, as it was said by the Lord Jesus to Zacchaeus, "This day is salvation come to this house"; for, "behold, NOW is the accepted time; NOW is the day of salvation.”
Job 33:14.
"GOD SPEAKETH ONCE, YEA TWICE, YET MAN PERCEIVETH IT NOT.”

You Need the Blood

At the close of a meeting recently the evangelist was telling some of his audience goodbye. Among them he shook hands with a young woman just as she was going out the door. She had attended the meetings regularly but did not appear to have received blessing. Four words were all the evangelist uttered as, taking her hand, he looked her full in the face: "You need the blood.”
The girl was half inclined to be offended; but as she wended her homeward way, over and over again the words rang in her ear: "You need the blood.”
"Many are worse than I," she thought; "but that does not mend matters. I am afraid to die. Did not the preacher say that 'all have sinned and come short of the glory of God'? I'm sure I have sinned thousands of times so that I really do need the cleansing of the blood.”
Quick as lightning there flashed into her mind the words she had lately heard: "The blood of Jesus Christ His (God's) Son cleanseth us from all sin." 1 John 1:7. This was followed by the verse, "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life." John 3:36. There and then that young woman was led by the Spirit of God to cast herself upon the Savior for cleansing and peace. She owned her lost condition and accepted His blood as full payment for her sins. She believed God's holy Word and rejoiced in His gift of eternal life.
The father of this girl was a Romanist. He was ill, and had been confined to his bed for some time. When she reached home she went straight to his bedside and exclaimed, "Father, you need the blood!”
Amazed at such a salutation, he asked for an explanation. With lips made eloquent by the Spirit of God, she told him how Christ had saved her soul. Now she longed to have all dear to her share her joy and to know for themselves that "God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." She told her father that "as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name." John 1:12. The poor, weary man believed the glad tidings; and, realizing the truth of the Savior's words, "Him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out," (John 6:37) he proved that "at evening time it shall be light.”
The following day the son, also a Romanist, came to see his sick father. Clinging to the young man's hand, the father exclaimed in a trembling voice: "My boy, you need the blood!" Through God's great mercy these words were used to help the lad see his lost condition and to flee for refuge to the only Savior. Thus within a few hours of time father, sister, and brother were all rejoicing in Christ Jesus.
Oh, you who have not yet proved that "the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin," prove it now! YOU NEED THE BLOOD, and only as justified by His blood can you be saved from wrath.
"God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him." Rom. 5:8, 9.

Deliver Him!

For a long time I had known my natural state before God—that I was lost, condemned already, dead in trespasses and sins, without hope and without God in the world. I knew that I justly deserved God's judgment, and that I had not a rag to wear in the presence of a holy God, who will have nothing less than a robe of spotless righteousness. The question of eternity gave me much uneasiness whenever I thought of it, and that was very often.
One night I went with my brother to a meeting where he was to preach. I shall never forget how he spoke; it seemed as if every word was addressed to me. He said that however much he, or anyone, might love us, or desire our salvation, "none can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him." Psa. 49:7. "Powerless, dear friends," he continued, "am I myself to help you. If your salvation depended upon any fellow creature, you would perish." Again he quoted his text, and his face grew paler than usual. I felt that he was yearning over my soul. Then he lovingly set forth the truth as expressed by the latter part of the verse: "Deliver him from going down to the pit: I have found a ransom." Job 33:24.
Much as I felt the power of that address, I still remained in darkness. I lingered in the building, and several of the Lord's people came and spoke to me about my soul. I did feel the need of salvation; but how could I obtain it?
One old gentleman, seeing various ones in conversation with me, asked what was going on. Someone answered, "A soul seeking Christ.”
"Oh," said he, "the seeking sinner and the seeking Savior will not be long apart.”
"But," said I to him, "suppose I were to die tonight?" He looked very straight at me through his spectacles. "Seek, and ye shall find," (Luke 11:9) he said, and turned away without another word.
As we left the building, my brother walked ahead with a friend. I followed them with my puzzled thoughts as company. After the two men had entered the house, I stood outside, looking up into the clear, starlit sky. As though spoken to me by the Son of God by whom those stars were made and held in their places, His words came into my heart: "He that believeth on Me hath everlasting life." John 6:47.
"Yes," I exclaimed, "I do believe on Thee, Lord Jesus; but I have not everlasting life." Again the passage came to my mind. "But I am not converted," I argued in my unbelief. A third time the glorious statement was pressed upon me. Then, to put it from me as being too unlikely, I reasoned, "I don't feel any different from what I did this morning, or last week, so I cannot have everlasting life." The Holy Spirit once more brought home the words of Jesus: "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth My word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life." John 5:24.
Still in my miserable unbelief I continued to reason that it was impossible. At last I was brought to this: "God made me, and He knows better about me than even I know about myself. He says if I believe on the Lord Jesus I have everlasting life. I do indeed believe, therefore I must have it if He says so. Lord, I believe! Help Thou mine unbelief.”
I managed somehow to tell my story to my brother later that night, and he did rejoice with and over me. My joy the next day was increased; and as some of the beautiful passages in Rom. 8 came to me, I found myself striking the table with my fist, as though I were repeating them emphatically to an audience. "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus.”
Reader, I would urge you to accept now the same precious Savior, and to rejoice in His word: "He that believeth on Me hath everlasting life," because God, the Son, says it.

Reveal Thyself to Me!”

"Acquaint now thyself with Him, and be at peace; thereby good shall come unto thee.”
Precious promise! It is a great thing to be "at peace" in a world where there is no peace. "Surely every man walketh in a vain show: surely they are disquieted in vain." How vivid the picture these, words draw of what is going on around us day after day in a world which by wisdom knew not God, and where the restless, unsatisfied heart vainly seeks happiness outside of Him in whose presence alone it can be found! The cross is the one place where we can acquaint ourselves with Him, "and be at peace." Have you done so, dear reader?
"Oh, God! if there be a God, reveal Thyself to me!" was the cry out of the darkness in which questions and doubts had plunged a would-be infidel. He was on his way down to the country to visit his estates some years ago. He had written a book to try to convince a friend of his folly in believing in Christianity. Before sending it to press he sat down to read it again. Having read it, he asked himself: "Were I a believer in Christ, would such arguments upset my faith? No, they would not." Throwing himself on his knees, he cried thus to God: "Oh, God! if there be a God, reveal Thyself to me!”
God heard; God answered; and he rose from his knees a changed man. Instead of publishing his book, this man was converted to the faith he had once sought to destroy.
Not only so, but he went forth into the world to tell out to others the grace of that Savior-God who had met him, and blessed him with the knowledge of Himself in so signal a manner. "And this is life eternal, that they might know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent." John 17:3.
Continuing his journey, he reached his estates; and there he learned that a number of his tenants had been making his conversion a subject of special prayer.
Again I would ask any who may read these lines, Have you made acquaintance with God? Are you at peace? If still in darkness, may light be yet your portion! Jesus says, "I am the light of the world" (John 8:12). Perhaps some may ask, "How can I find Him-the Light?" He also says, "I am the door"; "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
"Why 'neath the load of your sins do ye toil? Christ giveth rest, giveth rest.”
That peace, that rest-they are beyond price; neither you nor I could ever buy them. The One who gives this peaceful rest bought it. No words can tell what it cost Him, for He "made peace by the blood of His cross." "He laid down His life for us" (1 John 3:16), is the language in which the Spirit of God tells out the depth of that love —a deep that has no sounding.
"Acquaint now thyself with Him, and be at peace," dear reader, "thereby good shall come unto thee" (Job 22:21).

Seek and Find

Man naturally shrinks from getting into dose quarters with God. Often a sinner, aroused to a sense of his lost condition by the activity of the Holy Spirit, begins to "seek" after God. But waiting to find within his own poor heart a ground for assurance that he may come to God, he remains at a distance from Him.
We are not entitled to come to God because we may have a sense within our hearts that we are willing to come, nor because we feel graciously inclined, nor because we may think that we have attained to sufficient goodness within ourselves. Our only ground, our only title, for coming to God is His invitation in His Word. And He invites us to Himself just as we are.
"Seek ye the LORD while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near: let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon." Isa. 55:6, 7.
"The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit." Psa. 34:18.
"Enter ye in at the strait
gate: for wide is the gate,
and broad is the way,
that leadeth to
destruction, and
many there be
that go in
thereat:
"Strait is the gate, and narrow
is the way, which leadeth
unto life, and few there
be that find it.”
Matt. 7:13,14

February

The Broken Arm

William was an open-hearted young man, with plenty of courage and determination. He had the advantage of having Christian parents, and an early instruction in the great truths of salvation. This good seed, early sown, sprang up after many days, and bore the welcome fruits of peace and joy in his heart.
The Lord's Day evening that William first said he was converted was during a time when many Christians were stirred to pray for the conversion of souls to God, and their prayers were abundantly answered. William told us that he knew he was now all right for heaven. However, some of us could not refrain from a little misgiving at William's confession, since distrust of self and his own strength seemed lacking.
For a few months William bore the jeers of his companions, and listened patiently to the advice of Christian friends. But after awhile his professions broke down, and like many young people, he turned his back upon Christianity and his face toward the world.
After a time William set his heart upon going to sea. His mother's tears and his father's entreaties availed nothing, for though he was an affectionate son, the love of adventure drew him irresistibly from home.
Seafaring life agreed well with his health—he grew to be a fine upstanding young man. And William was as confident of making his way up in the world as he had been of making his way up to heaven. But there was a power pulling the other way all this time. The prayers of his parents: "O God, bless our boy, save his soul—wash away all his sins in the blood of Thy Son—for Thine honor and glory"—was heard on high.
William had many solemn warnings at sea, but he heeded them not. "God speaketh once, yea, twice." At one time, during an awful storm a vessel was foundering, and William's ship lay close beside her—as close as a ship dare in a tremendous sea. They witnessed the vessel's distress yet could render no assistance lest they also should founder. Many a strange, inquiring look passed from sailor to sailor that night. Death was there on that neighboring ship, but William only blasphemed his parents' God as he stuck to his work. When the morning came, the vessel was gone, and the cry of her company was swallowed up in the deep. They had heard their last sermon, they had attended their last prayer meeting, their spirits were gone into eternity. But William thought it was "good luck" his ship had survived.
Being an active young fellow, if there was a sail to be reefed in when the gale blew strong, he was sure to be one of the first aloft. One day, as his ship was running into a storm, William had climbed aloft. As he stood high upon the ropes, the wind swung a spar against his head, half stunning him, and down he fell through the rigging.
Had God forgotten the cry of Williams' parents? Had He cast off the youth who had turned his back upon His love? Oh, no! Instead of his being plunged overboard, the ship lurched and William fell upon the deck. He was picked up insensible and carried to his berth. His life was saved, but his arm had been badly crushed and broken.
William was sent home an invalid, his arm in a sling, and he badly cast down. Would the arm have to come off, or could it be saved? The doctors tried splints, bandages and lotions, and month after month rolled on; but the arm grew stiff and withered. At last, to his severe disappointment, William had to give up all hopes of again following the seafaring life.
His brave buoyant spirit, however, led him to one plan after another for earning a livelihood. With the energy of youth and its fearlessness of danger, he tried one bright scheme, then another. But he was baffled on every hand; each plan was fruitless, each expectation disappointed.
Now the loving counsels of his parents began to bear fruit, and William began to see that God was speaking to him. His eyes were opened to the concerns of his soul. He could no longer resist, as once he had done, the solemn warnings God gave him. He realized his sinfulness, and his need of a Savior; and the burden of un-forgiven sins weighed heavily upon his soul.
"What must I do to be saved?"—the cry which thousands have uttered—came in real earnestness from William's heart. No boasting now—no self-assurance, just a broken and a contrite heart.
God heard his cry, and the prayers of his parents were answered. Their boy owned God's love in permitting his poor arm to be crippled, for by this,, he told us, God had found the way to his heart. The love of the Savior in dying for sinners now occupied his thoughts, and daily the light shone brighter and brighter within him.
"The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit." Psa. 34:18.

Given up!

"Oh, I'm so glad you've come! I'm in a queer state, that I am.”
"Why, my dear man, what's the matter?”
"Well, sir, the doctor has just been here, and he gives me no encouragement whatever. He examined me thoroughly again this morning; and although he did not say right out that I shall die, I am sure he thought so by the look of his face. The fact is, sir, I know I may die at any moment, and my soul is not prepared to meet God.
"I've talked about death many a time when I was well, and saw nothing very dreadful in it; but, oh dear! It's a dreadful thing to me now. It's awful to have it staring me straight in the face. I know my time is short, for the water from this dropsy is not far from my heart.
"Oh, how I wish I knew the Lord as my Savior, as you do! It's not long since I sat on that chair as well and as free from pain as you are now while I was well, I lived year after year, caring nothing about eternity; but now—whatever must I do about my soul?" And saying this, the poor man sank back on his pillow in an agony of mind.
"My friend, death is an awful thing to face without Christ. But here is good news for all who put their trust in the finished work of Christ on the cross of Calvary: He has taken the sting from death; He is victor over the grave. The message of Christ's 'good news' when received into the heart brings glad tidings unto the meek; binds up the broken-hearted, proclaims liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound. (Isa. 61:1.)
"Now you know that you are a guilty, lost sinner; but Jesus 'came to seek and to save that which was lost.' He now says to you: 'Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.' Matt. 11:28. Cast yourself upon Him, hear His Word, receive Him, and YOU SHALL BE SAVED! For He Himself says with all authority: 'Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth My word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life." John 5:24.
God's Word applied by the Holy Spirit did its own blessed work. A few days later when I visited him I noticed a welcome change.
"Well, my friend, you look happier today than before. Have you found peace?”
"Yes, thank God, I have!”
"And have you had all fear taken away from your mind?”
"Yes. He is my Savior now. I've given myself clean up to Him, to do with me as He will. If He pleases to spare me, I'll be a different man from what I've ever been before. If He pleases to take me, I'm not afraid to go, for I've given myself clean up, and I believe He has accepted me.”
Time and circumstances have since tested sorely the man's profession. But through all his trials he continues to find peace and joy in the One on whom he has cast himself for time and for eternity.
"Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you." 1 Peter 5:7.

I Don’t Feel Right”

"Yes, I do believe on Jesus, but I don't feel right.”
Such is the honest expression of many an anxious soul. To such let me say a few words.
A few years ago a friend and I went down into a coal-pit. As we descended we experienced peculiar feelings. After we had gone down a short distance I felt precisely as though we were going upwards; and I could have been sure that such was the fact if I had not positively known that we were going downwards.
We explored the mine and returned, the cage coming down to where we were to lift us from the darkness and smut of the pit into the light and freedom of the outer world. Then my feelings were exactly reversed. I felt as though we were dropping downwards, but I KNEW that the powerful engine was bearing us upward as fast as it could, and we soon stepped out on the ground in the open air.
Now this is somewhat similar to the experience of souls. When they are going downward at a rapid rate to the pit of everlasting despair, Satan does his best to give them happy, comfortable feelings; and when they are questioned as to their salvation, their reply is, "Oh, we certainly hope to be saved! We feel quite happy!" Sad delusion! No hope is to be relied upon which is not grounded upon the sure Word of God; no happy feelings are to be trusted which are not produced by faith in the Scriptures of Truth!
But when the conscience is aroused, and the poor sinner sees himself in all his guilt before God, what a change! No flippantly expressed hope will satisfy him now; he must KNOW that there is a Savior for him. How can he know? The Word of God replies, "This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners." As the cage descended to lift us from the bottom of the coal mine, so this blessed Savior descended into this dark world to save your soul, poor sinner. As we stepped into the cage, trusting it to carry us every inch of the way, so may you trust that precious Savior who died for you; the Word which tells of Him is "faithful," and "worthy" of your acceptance.
"I do accept it," you say, "and trust Jesus as my Savior. Yet I feel as though I must go to hell, for I am so vile a sinner." Ah, this is Satan's work again! When you were going to hell as fast as time could carry you, he sought to make you feel as if you were going to heaven. Now, when Jesus is bearing you to glory by His mighty power, Satan would make you feel as if you must drop down to hell.
What is the cure? Let go your feelings; consider them not; just hold fast to what you know. God's Word says, "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; THAT YE MAY KNOW that ye HAVE eternal life." Blest knowledge! Whatever your feelings may be, God would have you know that you have eternal life. The One who died for the poor sinner upon Calvary's cross is a perfect, eternal Savior. Trust Him unwaveringly every step of the way. Meet all Satan's temptations with the words God has put into your lips; not "I feel," but "I KNOW." Sooner or later, every timid soul that has trusted Jesus will have the joy of stepping into the bright glory of God, to sing forever the praise of a faithful Savior.

The Work and the Word

The work of Christ, finished once for all upon the cross, is the means of the sinner's salvation. The Word of God, which endureth forever, is the ground of his assurance of that salvation. The work of Christ makes safe; the Word of God makes sure.
Nothing can be added to the finished work to make it more complete. Neither prayers, nor works, nor tears are needed from the sinner. All has been done to God's eternal satisfaction. The proof of this is Christ raised from the dead. Had there been a single jot of the work unfinished, a single demand of God unfulfilled, the resurrection of Christ would have been impossible. His resurrection is the seal of a satisfied God upon the perfect atonement which Christ has wrought. What satisfies God should surely satisfy man. When it does, there is reconciliation, salvation, peace.
So long as the sinner wants to do something, to add some merit of his own to the perfect work of Christ, or to find some cause in himself for the acceptance of it, he remains afar off and in the dark. God is jealous for the honor of His Christ. He will allow nothing to be put up alongside of Him. It must be Christ alone for salvation, and the Word alone for assurance.
Not even the work of the Spirit within, nor the results of that working, are the ground of peace. The finished work of Christ, the complete and accepted atonement which He made, is the only ground for peace with God. The Word declares it, and faith receives the testimony of God. No feelings, no evidences, no experiences will God give to make His Word more sure. It is enough.
Are you satisfied with it, with the bare Word of God alone, to give the knowledge of your salvation? Accept Christ's work, dear soul, and believe God's Word. Christ alone saves; the Word alone assures.
"Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." Rom. 5:1.

God Giveth the Increase

The Lord's Day evening service was ended. Henry, the young country preacher, started homeward through the chilly autumn twilight. The road ran for some distance along a gloomy valley; and as the cold wind swept the damp air past him, a great depression fell on the young man's spirit.
Henry felt as never before what a feeble instrument he was for the Lord's service among the mountain people. He began to question within himself whether he ought ever to have put his hand to this work for which he judged himself so poorly fitted. In his despondency, he doubted if any had received or ever would receive the least blessing through his poor efforts to tell the story of the Lamb of God.
As he neared the little town where he lived, his intense melancholy seemed to deepen until his gloomy train of thought was suddenly interrupted. A young man walking briskly toward him asked: "Can you tell me if I am right for Wolf Creek Bridge?”
"No," answered Henry; "you must go about a hundred yards back. Then turn to your right and you will easily find it.”
He was passing on; but the stranger caught sight of his face as they came under a lamppost by the road and exclaimed: "Surely I have seen you before!”
"I have no recollection of you," Henry replied, smiling. "Well, tell me, did you not preach some six weeks back at Chapel Hill?”
"Yes, I did," Henry answered sadly, ready with renewed depression to wish he had not done so. "Were you there?”
"That I was," the young man responded warmly; "and many a time have I longed to meet you again, for the words you spoke that night led me to turn to the Lord. I have now found the Savior of whom you spoke, and I have life in Him.
"I see now why I have been allowed to lose time by getting off my road in this way. I hesitated yonder as to which turning I should take, and felt half provoked when you showed me I had taken the wrong one after all. Now I see that the Lord led me here that I might meet you. Oh, how good of Him to let me set eyes on you again!”
"Ah," said Henry, as he heartily grasped the hand extended to him, "you know but half the story of the Lord's loving-kindness in letting us meet here. I must tell you my side of it.”
As they walked on together, with a full heart the young evangelist told of the deep discouragement he had felt, and how in this unexpected meeting the Father had given him fresh proof of His approval of his labors.
They parted; and Henry, with a light step and a glad heart, pursued his solitary way. With thankfulness to God for the encouraging encounter, he could now press on, by the grace of God, to labors more abundant. He knew that they would not be in vain in the Lord who giveth the increase.

The Precious Love of Christ

As there is a scarlet thread running through every bit of rope made for the British navy, and it is seen wherever the rope is cut, so from Genesis to Revelation is to be found the great truth of atonement by blood. From the coats of skin wherewith the Lord clothed Adam and Eve after their fall, until it is said, in Rev. 7:14, they "have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb," and "they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony," the doctrine of atonement by blood has been proclaimed by God.
When Sir Isaac Newton was living, a gentleman said to him, "I do not see the atonement in the Scriptures.”
"Sir," said Newton, "sometimes, in my absent-mindedness, I try to light my candle with the extinguisher on. You take the extinguisher off, and you will see the atonement.”
Yes; when you are freed from the base influence of unbelief, then you see the atonement all through the Scriptures. It is like the scarlet thread in the rope,—it is seen everywhere. Take the "extinguisher" off and all is clear.
To refuse the doctrine of atonement by blood is to quarrel with God, for He says: "Without shedding of blood is no remission." Heb. 9:22. And again, "The life of the flesh is in the blood; and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul." Lev. 17:11.
God who knows sin's demerit and its just deserts has ordained a way by which it can be put away, and its judgment borne. Thus God's holy character and glory are satisfied, and the need of the sinner is met. To refuse this is to remain in the guilty condition of the sinner, exposed to sin's deserts—the just judgment of a holy God. To such, there is nothing "but a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries." Heb. 10:27.
For God says, "When I see the blood, I will pass over you." One thing alone sheltered the firstborn in the land of Egypt 3500 years ago, and one thing only will shelter the sinner today from the impending judgment of God. It is the blood of Christ! The blood of the paschal lamb then was but a type of "the precious blood of Christ," that redeems and shelters now. Read 1 Peter 1:18-20.
Reader, stop and ask yourself the important question: "Amos 1 sheltered and redeemed by the precious blood of the Lamb of God?" God says, "When I see the blood, I will pass over you." Does He see the blood of Christ sprinkled on you? He says nothing else can redeem but the "precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.”
A woman who was a known sinner in the village where she lived confidently affirmed, when dying, that she was going to heaven. "You going to heaven?" said someone. "Don't you know what a sinner you have been?”
"Yes," said the dying woman, "I know I have been a sinner, but Jesus shed His blood to save me. It is the blood, it is the blood, IT IS THE BLOOD!”
It is the blood that answers every question, satisfies God, and silences Satan.
"Though the restless foe accuses,
Sins recounting like a flood;
Every charge our God refuses:
Christ has answered with His blood.”
"God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
Romans 5:8.

March

Take Heed

what ye hear. Mark 4:24.
I am the LORD, and there is none else. I have not spoken in secret... Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. Isa. 45:18, 19, 22.
TAKE HEED
therefore how ye hear. Luke 8:18.
Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. Isa. 1:18.
TAKE HEED
lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. Heb. 3:12.
Vengeance belongeth unto Me, I will recompense, saith the LORD... It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Heb. 10:30, 31.

Though Your Sins Be As Scarlet”

One Sunday evening a young man was walking along a street on his way to a scene of pleasure, when he was met by a man who thrust a small bit of paper into his hand. The young man took it and read, by the light, of the nearest lamp, the words: "Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow." A sneer passed over his handsome face as he read, and throwing the paper from him he hastened on.
"'Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow,' doesn't apply to me, at any rate. I am an infidel and do not believe anything of the kind," thought he.
“‘Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.' Bother the thing, I can't get rid of it!... 'Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.' Sins? Conscience? Yes; but I acknowledge neither a future nor a God, and therefore, am not responsible. What do I care to have my sins made white, to use the figure, seeing that I own no duties beyond those necessary to natural existence?
"'Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.' I am an infidel," stamping his foot. "I don't believe in the Bible, the God of the Bible, the future, or anything beyond the still, dark grave; so here's for a short life and a merry one...
“‘Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.' Confound it! I wish I could get it out of my head...
“‘Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.' It is very forceful, very poetical. Certainly that Bible is a wonderful book. Granted, for the sake of argument that it is true, and that a God exists, I can easily understand how religious people who believe in a future either of joy or suffering cling to such sentences with a tenacity proportioned to their belief.
“‘Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.' Admirable writing! Terse, forceful language! I wonder who wrote it. God, I suppose. God? why, there is no God; I forgot myself. If I could only remember my principles, and how logical and well founded the arguments are which support them, I shall be all right...
"'Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.' That thing again! will nothing put a stop to this? Here is a meeting house. I may as well turn in and see what they have to say." He entered, and was shown to a seat near the door.
A solemn silence reigned. The preacher had just read the text from the pulpit, and paused a moment before repeating it. Then in a gentle voice he pronounced the words,—"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”
The anteroom of that meetinghouse was always open for a short time after the service for the reception of those whom the message of the Lord had touched. That evening, among the anxious inquirers, there was one who prayed with tears, "Jesus, though my sins be dyed deeper than the deepest scarlet, do Thou make them whiter than the purest snow." And before he left the meetinghouse that evening he knew his sins were forgiven and his iniquities pardoned, through the precious blood of Christ.
"Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered." Rom. 4:7.

God Loves You

At the close of a gospel address I spoke to a young man who, I thought, seemed to be impressed by the message. I soon found out that he had not heard a word, for he was deaf and dumb. However, I was not hindered by that difficulty. Knowing a little of the sign language, I just told him these words: "God loves you.”
He looked at me with a blank stare. Then, shaking his head, he replied in the same manner: "No, no, I don't believe it; I know He hates me." "How can you say that?" I asked.
"I went to a church, and the preacher gave an address which was interpreted to us. He told us that God would forever cast us into hell if we did not live perfect lives, and keep His holy commandments! Ever since I heard that, I have not opened a Bible, I was so afraid. Of course I never went to that church again.”
"What did you come here for? You could not hear anything”
"I don't know why I came.”
"Shall I tell you?" I asked.
"If you know, you may.”
"Well, dear fellow, you were drawn by an unseen Person, who desires that you may know that 'God loves you.'”
"I wish that I did know it.”
Taking up a Bible, I turned to John 3:16, that grand old verse which has brought peace to thousands: "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
The light seemed to shine in little by little; but still there was a kind of dread; and so, turning to many other scriptures which spoke of God's love, I at last pointed him to 1 John 4:17, 19: "Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as He is, so are we in this world.”
"We love Him, because He first loved us.”
Again and again he read them, and the change in his countenance was wonderful. Taking his notebook out, he wrote down all the passages I had pointed out. With an expression of gratitude he bade me goodbye as he gave the sign for the basis of a new-found joy.
"I see it all now; and although dumb, I can praise God in my heart for the gift of Jesus.”
Reader, are you deaf, spiritually deaf, or have your ears been unstopped to hear the voice of the Son of God? God loves you, and has shown that love in giving His Son to die for you. He delights not in the death of a sinner. If He did, there would have been no need for the Lord Jesus to die. God wants you to understand this and to make no mistake about it: God loves you. Now thank Him for it as you own yourself a lost sinner. His love will draw you to Himself and hold you fast for all eternity.

What Think Ye of Christ?

What think ye of Christ? Does the question offend you? Surely not. You live in a Christian country; and should one say you are no Christian, you would consider it an insult. Why yes, you willingly adopt the name of Christ; it is a badge of respectability. But do you know Him? Is He your Savior, your life, and your Lord?
But what think ye of Christ?
"The question surprises me; I hardly know how to answer you.”
Indeed! The child of God should be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh a reason concerning the hope that is in him. But can it be—(I suggest it)—that in you there is no hope? Are you without God, and without hope in the world? For you is the future a dread uncertainty, and death a leap in the dark? Can you go on eating, drinking, and making merry, with this great question still unsettled: "Where shall I spend eternity?”
BUT
What think ye of Christ?
"Oh, I never trouble myself about these things. It always makes me feel uncomfortable when people speak about Christ. I mean to enjoy life while I can.”
Stop, my friend, would you cease to enjoy life if you knew your sins were forgiven? Would it fill you with sorrow to call Jesus "my Savior," and God "my Father"? Would it blight your happiness to know that an eternity of pleasures at God's right hand awaited you? That a Father's welcome and a Father's kiss would greet you? Would you find no satisfaction in the thought that the sorrows of earth would soon be exchanged for the joys of heaven?
AND AGAIN:
What think ye of Christ?
"Well, if you must know, I have never honestly thought about the matter. I look on such subjects as childish and I don't care to give my attention to them.”
And is that the way you treat the gospel of God? Is that the value you set on God's offer of mercy? See the Lord of glory who sends you the message, "Behold, I stand at the door, and knock." Will you treat Him with such careless indifference?
FINALLY:
What think ye of Christ?
Do you say: "I know Him as my Savior. His death has saved my soul, and the love which brought Him to it has won my heart. However, I keep my own counsel, my salvation is a strictly personal matter, and I do not care to speak of it. I am naturally of a timid disposition, and do not like to be thought peculiar.”
Are you ashamed of Christ? He bore shame, ridicule, abuse, contempt for you. Will you not own Him before men as Savior and Lord?
For "unto you therefore which believe He is precious." 1 Peter 2:7.

Happy in Christ

We cannot walk with Christ in that vivacity of joy and power of the Holy Ghost which the early Christians had unless we know Christ as a living Person with His eyes ever fixed upon us.

One Minute

Only one little minute,
How soon 'tis passed away!
We do not seem to miss it
As it goes on its way;
But every little minute
On sixty wings has flown,
And soon the tiny minutes
To hours and days have grown.

Oh, let us then redeem them,
For though so small are they,
The minutes make the hours,
The hours make the day.
How soon the days fly past us,
And months and years go by!
Like sunny days of childhood,
Like birds on wing they fly.

They're gone. Now youth succeeds them;
Then manhood and old age.
How great the sum of minutes
Recorded on life's page!
When gone, none may recall them
Nor bring them back again;
Some lie long since forgotten,
While others like a stain

Leave on the page of mem'ry
A dark and loathsome spot
Which cannot be erased
Nor ever be forgot.
These moments spent so idly,
These hours we've let slip by,
All bear us quickly onward—
On to eternity!

'Tis there again we'll meet them
In heaven's record kept:
Some gone before to judgment
If they have been misspent.
If spent in sin they'll meet us
At heaven's great assize,
To witness to our folly—
The TIME we lightly prize.

The Man We Forget

Recently I was much impressed with an advertisement. It eulogized the work of life insurance men through whose efforts the Canadian people alone hold three and a half billion dollars of life insurance. The advertisement was signed:
"Yours for Life Insurance Service.”
At the top right hand corner were the words:
"THE LOVE THAT NEVER DIES”
and in the upper left hand corner that which impressed me most:
"THE MAN WE FORGET.”
Immediately the question arose in my mind: Who is the most forgotten man today? You will hardly believe me when I tell you it is the Man in the glory of God—the Man Christ Jesus! It is the solemn truth that in these so-called Christian lands, to thousands JESUS is the forgotten Man. Many honor Him with their lips, but their hearts are far from Him.
WHO is this Man we forget? None other than God's eternal Son, whose goings forth were from everlasting to everlasting.
WHAT has He done? HE—the highest of all—subsisting in the form of God—invested with all the uncreated splendor and glory of the Godhead—became a man, took the place of a servant, and was obedient unto death. And in that death on Calvary's cross He shed that blood which cleanseth us from all sin. Thus poor sinful man may be lifted from the depths of degradation to the heights of glory in association with Himself.
An immense sum is $3,500,000,000.00. But how paltry it is when compared with the riches of the glory He brought to God and the blessing He secured for every lost, penitent sinner who simply trusts in Him who accomplished that wonderful work on Calvary's cross!
The Lord Jesus Himself asks: "What shall it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?" Mark 8:36, 37. Weighty questions indeed! Have you considered them?
"To lose thy gold is loss to thee;
To lose thy health 'tis more.
To lose thy soul is such a loss
That no man can restore.”
Let us consider three words from the advertisement: LIFE INSURANCE SERVICE.
"LIFE”
This is the first thing that the gospel promises. Jesus says: "Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that heareth My word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life." Again, "He that believeth on the Son hath life.”
"INSURANCE”
This, too, we have in the gospel—insurance against loss and an insurance that pays such a rate of interest that no company can compete with it. In Matt. 19:29 we read: "Every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for My name's sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life." Think of it! 10,000%, and Eternal Life!
"SERVICE”
Surely it is of the highest order, for the One who died on Calvary's cross to save you now lives in glory at God's right hand to serve you. "He ever liveth to make intercession for us.”
"THE LOVE THAT NEVER DIES.”
Truly His love never changes, never dies. "Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever." We may forget Him, but He never, never forgets us. "Having loved His own which were in the world, He loved them unto the end.”
Dear one, are you still a stranger to this blessed Savior? Don't ignore Him any longer. Come to Him now! Secure for yourself these wonderful blessings, and enjoy His love that never dies.
Did you say, "What about the premium?”
Jesus Himself has paid it all! Now He says: "Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.”
"Take it now and happy be.”
"Him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out." John 6:37.

Insensibility

How many perish, utterly dead to a sense of sin, altogether indifferent to the love of God!
A patient greeted his physician with a smile: "Doctor, I shall get well now! I feel no pain." The physician mournfully shook his head; the fatal symptom had showed itself-mortification had set in.
I feel no pain! I do not feel my sins; I am dead to the mercy of God, insensible to the sufferings of Jesus for sinners. Ah, these are fatal symptoms of being dead in trespasses and sins!
"Incline your ear, and come unto Me: hear, and your soul shall live." Isa. 55:3.
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live." John 5:25.

Faith

Faith is not a blind assent to something that cannot be understood. Nor does it take a leap into uncertainty. Under a sense of danger, he who has faith flies to a place of safety; burdened by a sense of guilt, he looks to One who can pardon; having proved everything within himself untrue, he rests on the truth of One who cannot lie. When all his need is met, his longings satisfied, he finds he has forgiveness of sins, peace with God, and all that the Word of God makes good to the believer.
Faith builds upon two bases: that man is ruined by sin; and that God is as good as He is mighty. Man cannot save himself, but God is both able and willing to save him.
Faith therefore turns from works, feelings, and efforts of every kind, and confidently reposes on what God has said.
A little boy had climbed up to the top of a chimney stack. His position was dangerous; a bad fall seemed imminent. Realizing his danger, he cried out to a woman who happened to enter the yard. She placed herself beneath the chimney and called to the child to jump into her arms.
The little fellow heard her call, and was sure that the woman was fully able to support him; but the distance was so great! He held the more tightly to the chimney top—he feared to let go.
She understood his dilemma and cried to him: "Don't fear! Just slide down. I'll catch you.”
At last the boy did let go, and fell into the strong, kind arms beneath. He was safe! While being lowered to the ground, he heard his rescuer say: "Why could you not trust me?”
This same woman had been in soul-difficulty, darkness, and misery for several weeks. Now she thought: "Is it not thus that I have been treating the Lord? Has He not been pleading with me to drop into His mighty arms? And I, in fear, have been holding onto the stack of my doubts and unbelief. Now I too will just let go and take Him at His word. He says, 'Him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out.' Lord, I come!" For her the happy effect was peace—immediate and abiding peace—with God.
That is what faith does.
Now, reader, will you not follow her example? You will be in misery forever unless you "let go, and let God.”
"The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms." Deut. 33:27.
The blood of Jesus Christ
His (God's) Son cleanseth
us from all sin.”
1 John 1:7.
"Blessed are they whose
iniquities are forgiven,
and whose sins are
covered.”
Rom. 4:7.

April

God's Love

Could we with ink the ocean fill,
And were the skies of parchment made;
Were every blade of grass a quill,
And every man a scribe by trade:
To write the love of God above
Would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Though stretched from sky to sky.

When hoary time shall pass away
And earthly thrones and kingdoms fall,
When men who here refuse to pray
On rocks and hills shall loudly call:—
God's love, so sure, shall still endure:
How vast! How full!! How free!!!
His love He gave, lost man to save
For all eternity.

Christ in Japan

In Japan, "the land of the rising sun," the light of the glorious gospel of Christ was late in casting its beams into the darkened hearts of idol worshipers and priests. But now amid its thousands of Shinto and Buddhist temples there are many buildings devoted to the service of the one true God; and here and there may be found. a simple gospel room, with an invitation to come and hear the "yesu-no-michi." Even in Buddhist temples the gospel sound has been heard, and some of the priests have been brought to the Lord. There is an open mind among some; but even as in the early days, others are bitterly opposed to the spread of the gospel among the people.
Soon after Japan was opened to the gospel, a Buddhist priest named Yohoi was present at a great ecclesiastical function in Niigata. A discussion sprang up among the priests there assembled as to the most effectual methods of attacking and thus hindering the spread of this new "religion.”
Yohoi contended that in order to oppose it successfully, each priest must study its doctrines personally and become fully acquainted with them. To encourage others in practicing what he had advised, he went directly from the conference and purchased a New Testament for himself. For months he studied it diligently, first delighting in its beauty as literature; and then, becoming convinced of its divine origin and true character, he saw his own sinfulness and need of Christ as his Savior.
A few days later Yohoi handed in his resignation to the chief priest, saying that he could no longer serve under him. Returning to his northern temple, he gave up his charge and set off for Tokyo, a distance of 180 miles, which he traveled on foot. Arriving at the capital in deep distress of soul, he sought out a Scotch Christian missionary who gave him further knowledge of God's holiness, His justice, and His righteous judgment on sin. So intense was Yohoi's own conviction of sin, that this added knowledge only plunged him into deeper despair. Indeed he was sorely tempted by Satan, the great adversary of souls, to throw away the Book of God and return to idolatry.
But he continued to read the beautiful writings, and the entrance of that Word gave him light. Burdened with a sense of his guilt before God, he came across the words of the Lord Jesus in Matt. 11:28, "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." These wonderful words, full of grace and tenderness, filled his heart with a strange sense of peace. He read them over time after time, musing upon each word and committing them to memory. All through the silent hours of that night he lay awake: he thought of them; he pondered them; he believed them. The "eyes of his heart" were enlightened; he experienced the "rest" of which the verse speaks. Yohoi was saved, and he knew it.
He did not hide his light, but confessed Jesus as his Savior and his Lord. He often delighted to tell of these words which were used by the Spirit in leading him to Jesus and in giving rest to his soul. But his greatest joy was to tell of the Savior Himself by whose precious blood he was cleansed from sin.
Reader, you are no heathen. You have been born in a land of gospel light. You have heard of Jesus, the Savior who is able and willing to cleanse you from every stain. Will you not, like Yohoi, "rest" in Him, receive Him, and know the joys of sins forgiven?
"As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name." John 1:12.

What Then?

A young man came to the dean of a renowned university. With a face beaming with enthusiasm, he informed the old man that the long-cherished desire of his heart was at last fulfilled:—his parents had given their consent to his studying law. As this university was distinguished for its law school, he had decided to attend and to spare no labor or expense in getting through his studies as quickly and efficiently as possible. Thus he continued to talk for some time. When he paused, the old man, who had been listening to him with great patience and kindness, gently said: "Well, when you have finished your studies, what do you mean to do?”
"Then I shall take my degree," answered the young man.
"And then?" asked his venerable friend.
"And then," continued the youth, "I shall have a number of difficult and knotty cases to plead. I shall attract notice by my eloquence, and wit, and acuteness, and win a great reputation.”
"And then?" repeated the professor.
"And then," replied the youth, "there can be no question but what I shall be elected to some high office in the state, and I shall become rich.”
"And then?”
"And then," continued the would-be lawyer, "I shall live comfortably and honorably in wealth and respect, and look forward to a quiet and happy old age.”
"And then," repeated the old man.
"And then," said the youth, "and then-and then-and then I shall die!”
Here his venerable listener raised his voice, and again asked with solemnity and emphasis: "And then?”
At last the aspiring student had no answer. With bent head and downcast eyes he silently left the room. That final "And then" had pierced his heart like a sword—had darted like a flash of lightning into his soul.
He could not rid himself of the sharp barb. His conscience was pricked and his heart pierced by that searching "And then?”
The result was an entire change in his course. He saw for himself the vain structure on which he would have built his life. Abandoning the thought of studying law, he received the Lord Jesus as his Savior. This settled the question of where he would spend eternity after leaving this life. In the meantime he is faithfully telling others the good news of salvation, counting all his former plans and attainments as loss for Christ. Phil. 3:7.
"He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord." 1 Cor. 1:31.

Moment by Moment”

Mrs. Abbott, a widow, had been going through great trial. A house, the rental from which was her only income, had fallen into the hands of a wicked tenant. Whenever she went for the rent, he simply mocked at her, jeered and laughed; and no effort she made obtained the rent due nor succeeded in turning him out. As a last resort she put her case in the hands of a lawyer, and in due time she received a summons to appear in court.
The poor woman was in deep poverty and distressed in her soul for fear of a righteous God. But would He undertake for her, a lone, sinful woman? Her case would be called in a few weeks; and what if the judge ruled against her? Then indeed she would be ruined, forsaken by God and man.
While thus troubled in mind, she saw a newspaper headline: "Three Days with God." It was the notice of meetings being held in an East End Assembly Hall. "I will go and spend these days with God and put my case into His hands," she said to herself.
She put on her hat to start forth, and had her hand on the door, when—a knock! A neighbor, a young policeman, was standing there asking, "Mrs. Abbott? My wife is very ill, maybe dying. But I must be on my beat. Can you help us?”
It was a struggle for a moment; but then she said, "I will go to her.”
The young man took her to his house and into the room where his wife lay, indeed very ill. She had been previously cared for by an irresponsible person who had allowed an infection to develop, and now the poor sick girl seemed to be near death.
"No 'three days with God' for me," Mrs. Abbott thought as she went quietly and efficiently about the task of nursing. All that day and until the following morning she watched over her patient until, another neighbor coming in to relieve her, she went home to rest.
As she entered her house she remembered the newspaper notice, and the thought came: "Now is my opportunity." Forthwith she started for the Assembly Hall and reached it in time for the afternoon meeting.
The evangelist spoke on Love, the very nature of God, which is imparted to every true believer in Christ and is "shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us." Rom. 5:5. This same Holy Spirit prodded her wicked heart, convicting her of her sinful state. Did she not hate the man who had wronged her? She had wished him only evil, when the lowly Man of Galilee had said "Love your enemies"! (Matt. 5:44, 45.)
When at the end of the address the preacher had said, "If any one here has not in his heart the love of God, and feels his need, let him come before Him now while we wait on Him in silence," she had knelt down with shame in her heart. She humbly confessed her hatred and anger towards her tenant, and her unbelief towards God and the gift of His love, the Lord Jesus. And He who knows "the thoughts and intents of the heart" heard her cry and brought peace and love into her soul. Simply as a little child she received the blessed Savior of sinners as her own Surety of salvation, and His peace filled her heart. Now she felt that nothing else mattered, not even what became of the house, for the Scripture said: "Casting all your care upon Him, for He careth for you.”
As she rose from her knees the hymn was given out, "Moment by Moment." How it thrilled her! The second verse she appropriated to herself as her own personal assurance from her new-found Father: "Never a battle with wrong for the right, Never a contest that He does not fight; Lifting above us His banner so white, Moment by moment I'm kept in His sight.”
Mrs. Abbott again entered the sick room before midnight. The patient was in great pain, but looked up as her kind neighbor entered. "How rested you look!" she exclaimed. "You must have had a good sleep.”
"Oh, no, my dear; I have had no sleep. I have been to a meeting and have found the Lord. In Him I have such blessing that all my care is gone. And I have brought you such a wonderful hymn! I'll read it to you presently.”
She went quietly about the business of making the poor girl as comfortable as possible before she sat down to tell her about the meeting where she had met God. Now, her own heart filled with unspeakable joy and peace, she told the listening girl how He had shown her her sin and need of a Savior; how she had accepted the Lord Jesus, and how He had cleansed her heart and filled it with love for Himself and poor lost souls. And then she read the hymn:
"Dying with Jesus, His death reckoned mine;
Living with Jesus a new life divine;
Looking to Jesus till glory doth shine,
Moment by moment, O Lord, I am Thine.”
Then, reverently, she read "her own" second verse, following it with the rest of the hymn: "Never a trial that He is not there:
Never a burden that He doth not bear;
Never a sorrow that He doth not share,
Moment by moment I'm under His care.

"Never a weakness that He does not feel,
Never a sickness that He cannot heal;
Moment by moment, in woe or in weal,
Jesus, my Savior, abides with me still.

"Never a heartache and never a groan:
Never a teardrop and never a moan,
Never a danger, but there on the throne,
Moment by moment He thinks of His own.

"Moment by moment I'm kept in His love:
Moment by moment I've life from above;
Looking to Jesus till glory doth shine,
Moment by moment, O Lord, I am Thine.”
Tears were streaming down the sick woman's face. With trembling lips she whispered, "'Moment by moment, O Lord, I am Thine.' Oh, I am so miserable! I know I can't live long, and I am not ready to die. What shall I do?”
"Do, dearie? There's nothing for you to do but look to the Lamb of God who has done all for you. 'Behold the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world.' It was a sight of Him dying for me that took the load of sin off my soul. Now 'Jesus, my. Savior, abides with me still.'”
Helpless, weak and suffering, the dear girl committed herself into the care and keeping of the tender Shepherd of souls.
When the day came for Mrs. Abbott to appear in court against her tenant, she went in confidence that the Lord was with her. Scarcely a question was asked her before the judge rendered his decision: her house was returned to her and the arrears in rent was ordered paid immediately. With thankful heart she returned home, praising Him of whom she could say: "He brought me up also out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And He hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God." Psa. 40:2, 3.

My Debt

All that I was,—my sin, my guilt,
My death—was all my own;
All that I am I owe to Thee,
My gracious God, alone.

The evil of my former state
Was mine, and only mine.
The good in which I now rejoice
Is Thine, and only Thine.

The darkness of my former state,
The bondage—all was mine;
The light of life in which I walk,
The liberty—'tis Thine!

Procrastination

" 'I will tomorrow, that I will;
I will be sure to do it.'
Tomorrow comes, tomorrow goes,
And still thou are to do it.
Thus still repentance is deferred
From one day to another;
Sin's wages-death-one day must come,
Then JUDGMENT is the other.”

Under a Curse

He was an earnest young man, morally upright in his ways. Nevertheless a day came in his life when. the shadow of eternity crossed his path and made him utterly miserable. He saw how unfit he was to stand before a thrice holy God, and he was filled with deep concern.
In this condition he walked the streets of the city of Toronto night after night. He stopped now and then to listen to speakers at various open-air meetings. As he stood one night listening intently, the speaker quoted largely from the Old Testament scriptures, and urged upon his hearers the need of keeping the law. The young man listened eagerly, seeking something to satisfy his longing soul. When the meeting was over the preacher spoke to him and succeeded in persuading him to join their group. In that association he gave liberally of his means and did all he could to help "the cause." Most earnestly did he strive to live up to the requirements of the law in Sabbath-keeping and in the "shalt nots," but with poor success.
One day, sadly discouraged, he opened his Bible at these words: "Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them." Gal. 3:10. As he read and reread these words he was full of dismay. Appalling thought! "Instead of getting the longed-for blessing, I am under a curse.”
In despair he again walked the city streets and listened to preacher after preacher. At last one night in an open-air meeting he heard those glorious words: "It is finished." The preacher, in glowing words out of a heart filled with the love of Christ, spoke of that wonderful transaction which was accomplished on Calvary's cross. He said: "The gospel of God is not 'do' but 'done.'”
"Done is the work that saves,
Once and forever done;
Finished the righteousness
That saves the unrighteous one.”
With earnest, loving words he urged his hearers to rest only and wholly upon Christ and His shed blood—upon "Him who bare our sins in His own body on the tree.”
These words, brought home by the power of the Spirit of God, were like cold water to a thirsty soul. Eagerly the weary lad drank in the message. Before leaving that street corner he had entered into the meaning of those precious, precious words, "It is finished," and rejoiced at the thought that the One who had accomplished that mighty work of redemption was now crowned with glory at God's right hand. Now he saw that he was free from the curse, and had obtained the blessing of God which maketh rich. Light and joy filled his soul; and instead of bondage, he was brought to know the glorious liberty of the children of God.
Jesus says: "I am the door." (Mark the definite article. It is not "a" but "the" door, for there is only one.) "By Me if any man enter in he shall be saved and shall go in and out and find pasture.”
"To him that worketh not but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.”

Nothing

A clergyman was commanded to preach before Fredrick William of Prussia, and he was promised a text. All week the clergyman waited anxiously. No text came; but go he must!
Arriving at the Royal Chapel, he inquired if a message had been sent from the king for him. He was informed that he would find it in the pulpit. And there it was-a sheet of blank paper!
Holding out the wordless text, he said: "Sire, you have indeed given me the truest subject that a preacher ever had. You bid me make a sermon out of nothing. Out of nothing God made the world, and He hangeth it upon nothing. Out of you, O Sire, when you come to the knowledge that you are nothing, Jesus can make a saint of God. Out of me, who am nothing, the Holy Ghost can make a messenger to you from the King of kings.”
"Though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity [divine love], I am NOTHING." 1 Cor. 13:2.
There is a way which
seemeth right unto a man;
but the end thereof are the
ways of death.”
Prov. 14:12.
"Jesus saith,. I am the way,
the truth, and the life: no
man cometh unto the
Father, but by Me.”
John 14:6.

May

God's Boundary

There is a time, we know not when,
A point, we know not where,
That marks the destiny of men
To glory or despair.

There is a line by us unseen
That crosses every path,
The hidden boundary between
God's patience and His wrath.

How far may'st one go on in sin?
How long will God forbear?
Where does hope end, and where begin
The confines of despair?

An answer from the skies is sent:
"Ye that from God depart,
While it is called today, Repent!
And harden not your heart.”

Arrested

"God has got me tonight," said a tall, manly young fellow about nineteen years old. Tears of joy ran down his happy face.
What a beautiful sight it is when a heart is touched and won by the grace of God made known in Jesus, His beloved Son! And how strikingly these words expressed what had actually taken place that night in the young man's soul.
About a half hour before this, he had been inquiring his way to the barracks which were about a mile from town. The one of whom he asked direction had himself been led to the Savior of sinners a few years previously, and now spoke kindly to the inquirer. Finding a sympathetic listener, the young man told him something of his circumstances.
His mother was dead, and his father had lately taken to drink. A younger brother and sister had just been placed in a "home," and he himself had lost his jab through striking a fellow workman at his place of employment. And now—his clothes shabby, hunger pressing him, and with no recommendation for another job—he was contemplating what he called "his last chance"—enlisting.
"I could earn enough money then," he said, "to care for my brother and sister; and when I have served my enlistment I'll be prepared to take a good job and earn real money. Six years seems a long time; but it will soon pass, and then—”
His companion here interrupted him by referring to the uncertainties of life and of riches, too. He sought by God's grace to tell him of the "true riches" which are not for time only, but for ETERNITY.
The young man listened to the glad tidings with much astonishment. "Nobody has ever spoken to me like that, sir! Nobody ever told me that!”
He continued to listen intently, accepting as simply as a child the good news of salvation. With tears in his eyes, he finally remarked: "To think that I should have spoken to you sir, and asked you to direct me! God must have sent you to tell me of His love!”
By this time they had reached the barrack gates from which a wide road leads up to the administration buildings. Bidding' the young man "Good night," his Christian companion commenced to retrace his steps toward town. To his surprise he was soon overtaken by the same young man he had just left at the barrack gates.
"I could get no farther, sir, than halfway up the road. Something told me, when I got that far, not to go on; so I came back, and now here I am. What shall I do?”
This was said with much earnestness; and with it came a request that he might hear more of what had been told him on the way from town. His companion gladly complied with his wish, telling him more about that Savior-God who gave Jesus, His only Son, to bleed and die on Calvary's cross for sinful man, and whom God had raised from the dead.
Listening thus to the sweet story of the grace of God, the young man burst into tears, saying, "God has got me tonight, sir; God has got me tonight!”
So much for his blessing, dear reader; but what about your own? Have you yet been arrested by the blessed God who gave Jesus, His only Son, to die for sinners? Has His grace, made known in Jesus, ever touched your heart? If not, may it be so now.
"Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins." 1 John 4:10.

God’s Remedy

This story is told of the brother of the celebrated evangelist, George Whitefield. Being on one occasion in a despondent frame of mind, his face betrayed his distress to the kind, observing eye of the Countess of Huntingdon. She inquired of him the cause, to which he answered:
"Ali, madam! I am a lost man.”
Greatly to his amazement, she expressed herself as pleased with his reply. His puzzled expression brought forth the softly spoken explanation from her: "The Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
The miserable man understood the remark at once, believed it, and was happy.
Glorious mission! Blessed news! '"By Him (the now risen Jesus) ALL that believe are justified from ALL things" (Acts 13:39), for God hath "exalted with His right hand, to be a Prince and a Savior," that blessed One who "was delivered for our offenses, and was raised again for our justification" (Rom: 4:25).

Heavenly Goods”

A few years ago I was making a little evangelistic tour, preaching the gospel at various places. I was accompanied by two other servants of the Lord whose hearts were deeply interested in the salvation of the lost. Going from town to town we had frequent opportunities of conversation with our fellow passengers in the train, and of handing to them little gospel booklets.
We were leaving a town on the coast when there entered the train a middle-aged man who took his seat opposite to me. He was inclined to be sociable, and began to speak about the weather and the crops. On the rack over my head I had a good-sized flat leather case, such as commercial travelers often use for their samples. I had specially designed it for carrying hymn sheets and gospel booklets for use at our meetings. Seeing this case, he at once thought that I was a commercial traveler, and said, "What line are you in?”
"Heavenly goods," I replied.
"Get away with you," was his surprised reply. "You do not expect me to believe that!”
"Indeed I do," I rejoined. "It is heavenly goods, and heavenly goods only, that I am showing just now.”
"But what are they?" he asked.
"The proclamation to sinners of pardon and peace with God; telling of eternal life as His gift through faith in His blessed Son, and that whosoever will believe the gospel may now have the knowledge of salvation.”
My reply was evidently unsatisfactory to him. He said nothing, but looked very incredulous. At this point my two companions chimed in: "Oh, it is quite true what he says; that really is the line he is showing.”
By way of confirmation of their words, they produced some little handbills announcing the meetings we were to have a day or two afterward in Auburn. He had no more questions for me, so I thought I would put one or two to him.
"What about your own soul, my friend? Are you saved?”
"Ah, that is what no man can know.”
"I beg your pardon! It can be known. I know that I am saved, and you may know the same. You have heard the gospel many a time in your day, I suspect?”
This evidently awoke in his mind old memories, and with a softened tone he said: "Yes, when I was a boy and lived in this district. But that is long ago. You see, I have lived in the city most of my life. When I was a boy here I used to hear about those things, and think about them, too; but when I crossed the state and got into the busy city, I flung all thought of religion overboard. I just set myself to make money.”
"And you have made it?" I asked.
"Yes, I have done well in that line. I have come North now to see my old friends and the old places, and to enjoy myself.”
"And the money you have made has made you quite happy, I suppose. Are you all right for eternity?”
"Indeed, I am nothing of the kind. Money does not make a man happy, nor save his soul.”
"Quite true," I replied; "and I think if you are a wise man, you will now seek to get the riches that are abiding, everlasting, and satisfying. In other words, you had better secure the 'heavenly goods' that I am speaking of. Would you not be the better for their possession?”
"I believe I would," said he; "but how am I to get them?”
Then followed a plain conversation as to the gospel, up to the station at which he had to leave us. He seemed much interested as he listened. On leaving, he took a gospel booklet or two with thanks, and a notice of the meetings.
On the following Lord's Day, both afternoon and evening, I saw him among the listeners in the hall where I was preaching the gospel. I had no opportunity of further personal conversation, but his face was shining with the joy of one who has found the preciousness of Christ.
"Unto you therefore which believe He is precious." 1 Peter 2:7.
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved." Acts 16:31.
"To Him give all the prophets witness, that through His name whosoever believeth in Him shall receive remission of sins." Acts 10:43.
"He that heareth My word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life." John 5:24.

The Lord Hearkened

Mal. 3:16
When Christians speak to one another of Christ,. He will always be one of the company. Does your heart long to know Him, to be conscious of His presence? Then accept Him as your Savior and speak often to others of His own about Him. Then it will be as it was for the two on the road to Emmaus: "Jesus Himself drew near and went with them.”

”Let Us Alone”

"Why can't they let us alone? They never come to the house without tormenting us about our souls; and I don't see the fun of it at all." So said a proud, unconverted young man to his mother. And possibly the reader of these lines has thought the same, if he has not said them.
Now, shall I tell you why we do not let you alone why we speak to you, and why we write to you? It is because we see you standing upon the slippery brink of everlasting hell, heedless of your danger! Every throb of your heart beats the death march to the grave; and you live as though you had a lease on life, and could die when you pleased. You live as though there were no God to meet, no sins to answer for, no hell to shun, and no heaven to reach. How can we let you alone? We would be cruel, heartless, inhuman if we did.
"Let us alone!" So said the poor, devil-possessed sinner to the Lord Jesus in the days of old (Mark 1:24). But Jesus did not let him alone, and the unclean spirit had to come out.
Just think of one in such terrible misery saying to the only One who could deliver him—and who came for that purpose —"Let us alone!" And yet men follow his example.
Dear one, if still unsaved, thank God that you have a body out of the grave and a soul out of hell; and do not say to Him any longer: "Let us alone,"—lest He answer your prayer. BUT
"The, Lord is... long-suffering... not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." 2 Peter 3:9.

“Wrath to Come”

This was the preacher's main point, and he pressed it with the earnestness of a man who believed that for all who die out of Christ the WRATH TO COME will be an awful reality.
One at least of his hearers was seriously impressed. She trembled at the thought that if she so passed out of life, wrath—the wrath of God—would be her portion for all eternity. If she endured it for hundreds, thousands, MILLIONS of years, it would still be "to come"! A finite creature could never exhaust the sentence meted out by Him who is infinite.
It was an awful thought! In her distress the poor girl cried to God for help; and He who knoweth the thoughts and intents of the heart heard her unspoken plea. It was as though she heard His own tender voice saying, "Come unto Me... and I will give you rest." With infinite love He showed her that there is no rest for the soul of one thus aroused until it is found at the feet of Him who, having Himself endured and exhausted the judgment, can speak peace to everyone who trusts in Jesus.
And there is no rest, no peace, for anyone whose eyes have been opened to see the wide chasm that yawns between a holy God and a sinful creature, until he learns-that the distance has been bridged by the cross of Christ. God Himself has provided the way of approach, and not only receives but welcomes with tenderest love every soul that avails itself of His supreme goodness.
"No wrath God's heart retaineth
To usward who believe;
No dread in ours remaineth
As we His love receive.
Returning sons He kisses,
And with His robe invests—
His perfect love dismisses
All terror from our breasts.”

Man’s Responsibility

God holds all who have heard the gospel responsible to believe it. He "commandeth all men everywhere to repent" (Acts 17:30), for the day is fast approaching when the "strong delusion" shall be sent to those who in this day of grace "believe not the truth" (2 Thess. 2:11, 12).
The blood of Christ will avail them nothing then. The door of mercy will be closed against such forever then (Matt. 25:10-12); and "the Lord Jesus (the Savior now) shall" then "be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire king vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ; who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His power." 2 Thess. 1:7-9.
"He that believeth not the Son SHALL NOT see life." Mark it well, Universalist! "Shall not see life; but the wrath of God ABIDETH ON him." Mark it well, Annihilationist! "Abideth on him" in the long eternal NOW (John 3:36)!
Reader, these are God's plain facts. Pervert not their meanings, but "Turn ye, turn ye, for why will ye die?”

M. R.

The Midland express had drawn up at the station and the engineer was standing on the platform for the few minutes that had to elapse before time for the departure of the train for the South. At the moment he stepped down from his cab, he was noticed by a Christian on the lookout for an opportunity to speak a word for the Lord. This zealous soul immediately accosted the engineer with a barrage of questions.
"And what do you think of the Lord Jesus Christ?" This was quickly followed by the second: "And what do you think of what He has done?" And finally: "And pray tell me, are your sins forgiven?”
The engineer, a man of ready wit, was not at all taken aback by the volley of questions hurled at him. With a smile, he pointed to the initials of the railway company on the side of his engine, and said: "That's my answer to all your questions!”
"How can that be? What do you mean by that?”
"I mean that M. R. supplies the answers to all you have asked.”
"Please explain yourself, for I don't understand you." "You asked, 'What do I think of the Lord Jesus?' M. R. tells me that He is My Redeemer.”
"Ah, I see! That's capital.”
"M. R. tells me what I think of what He has done, for He has accomplished a Matchless Redemption. You ask me if I am saved: M. R. tells me that I have been Mightily Redeemed! So you see I have ever before me that which reminds me of my Savior, of what He has done, and of how I share in it. Praise His name!”
Time now being up he returned to his cab, and with a loud, and as it seemed, a joyous whistle he drove off on his way to the South.
My Redeemer! Is He yours?
Mightily Redeemed! Are you?
Matchless Redemption! It is indeed!
"Redeemed... with the precious blood of Christ." 1 Peter 1:18, 19.

True Happiness

It was August, hot and sultry. A Christian missionary chose that afternoon—not through a sense of duty, but for the privilege of serving the Lord of glory—to visit a narrow, dingy street in the center of the town.
Holding a Bible and a bundle of tracts in her hand, she knocked at a door in the almost deserted street. Waiting expectantly for someone to answer, she was suddenly startled by a gruff voice behind her saying, "Give me a tract, lady. And I want a gospel one.”
Turning hastily, she found a rough—looking man, his clothes covered with sawdust, pushing a cart which he now rested on the curb behind him. Choosing carefully and with a silent prayer for God's guidance and blessing she handed to him a gospel story entitled, "Saved for Nothing.”
"Will that suit you?" In answer to her question, she was amazed at his burst of eloquence.
“‘Saved for nothing!' Yes, lady, that's it. But there are so many who think they can be saved for something. They are like Naaman who came to the man of God with horses and chariots, with pride in the power and beauty of his homeland, and boasting of the value of the rivers of Damascus as better than the God-appointed waters of Jordan for his cleansing. As his servants said to him: 'If the prophet had bid thee do some great thing, wouldest thou not have done it?' There was salvation waiting for him; yes, he could be saved for nothing.”
"But the salvation of poor, lost man has cost God everything," returned the missionary.
"Yes, lady. It cost God His own dear Son. I have not been well" (a statement his appearance fully confirmed), "and was lying down this morning reading Colossians. It says there: 'It pleased the Father that in Him should all fullness dwell,' and 'in Him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.' I just lay back and closed my eyes and said: 'Blessed Lord, and of Thy fullness have all we received.' Look at the crowds that go out after worldly pleasure. To them the blessed Savior of sinners is only `a root out of a dry ground'; but to me—oh, I love that verse in the Song of Solomon!—He is 'altogether lovely.' Altogether, lady—all about Him!”
As she looked into the calm, pale face lighted up with holy joy and felt the clasp of his rough, toil worn hand, the missionary thought: "I have met the happiest man in town—a man not only satisfied himself, but one whose cup overflows.”
And when they meet again in the glory of God, where suffering and toil are forever past, it will be to find that the joy that was filling his heart that August afternoon was but a foretaste of "pleasures for evermore.”
"In Thy presence is fullness of joy; at Thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore." Psa. 16:11.
"Marvel not that I said unto
thee, Ye must be born
again.”
John 3:7.

June

He Saved a Poor Sinner Like Me

I was once far away from the Savior,
And as vile as a sinner could be;
I wondered if Christ, the Redeemer,
Could save a poor sinner like me!
I wandered on in the darkness;
Not a ray of light could I see,
Till the thought filled my heart with sadness:
There's no hope for a sinner like me!

It was then in that lonely hour,
A voice whispered sweetly to me
Saying, "Christ, the Redeemer, has power
To save a poor sinner like thee."
I listened. And lo, 'twas the Savior
That was speaking so kindly to me.
Then I cried: "I'm the chiefest of sinners!
Wilt Thou save a poor sinner like me?”

Fully then I trusted in Jesus,
And oh, what a joy came to me!
My heart, it was filled with His praises,
For He saved a poor sinner like me.
No longer in darkness I'm walking;
Heaven's light is now shining for me!
And now unto others I'm telling
How He saved a poor sinner like me.

Back From the Brink of Hell

I was returning late one Lord's Day evening from a town where I had been preaching the gospel. After the train had left the station I pulled out a bundle of tracts from my pocket and handed one to each of the passengers in the coach.
An old gentleman sitting opposite to me gave me a rather peculiar glance as he accepted the booklet and began to turn over its pages, examining them with a critical eye. I felt interested in his cautious manner, and was surprised when his sober mien gave place to a look of pleasure. Then he leaned over and whispered in my ear: "Have you been away somewhere telling the story?”
"Yes, sir," I replied, delighted thus to have the ice broken. "And may I ask you, do you know my Savior Jesus?”
"Aye, that I do, many a year," said he.
"Well, sir, I am a young man, and I do love to hear of the Lord's goodness to those who have known Him in all the trials and vicissitudes of life. Would you mind telling me how He found you?”
"That I will. Do you see those fields and lanes?" he asked as he pointed out of the train window. "Well, years ago when I was a young man you might have found me lying drunk all night in the middle of a field or in a ditch, a hopeless drunken prodigal. Many a time I lay all night in the cold and wet, unable to make my way to what I called home. That's how the devil serves his children.
"But that could not last, strong as I was. Debauchery, exposure, and continual drunkenness at last wrecked what had once been a fine, husky body, and I was laid low by disease. My old companions, alarmed, sent for a doctor. He told us all plainly that I was so far gone that there was positively no hope. They sent for another doctor and he repeated the verdict. As a last hope they took me to a hospital. There I was refused admittance on the basis of incurability.
"Alarmed now for my soul, they sent for the religious people. They came to my room and prayed and pleaded; but I angrily pushed aside all their entreaties and told them to be gone. I had served the devil all my life, and I would serve him in death, too.
"But, sir, after all the doctors had gone, and after the praying people had gone too, there came to me the Great Physician and He began right away to mend my poor body in spite of the doctors and their opinions. In a few days I was feeling like a new man, but was still unfit to leave the house.
"Well, I sat there in my weakness and thought of God's goodness and mercy to me, a hell-deserving sinner. But He had thought it worthwhile to heal me up a bit and give me strength to live a little longer here. Then I thought, 'Well, He has a right to me altogether, and I think it worthwhile to trust Him.' This I did, and He took me as I was, there and then. I got rapidly better, and all these years He has kept me. I have seen many sorrows and gone through deep waters, but He has been my refuge and has upheld me by His grace." Here the old man's eyes filled with tears of gratitude as he leaned back in his seat exhausted. Gazing upon the quiet calm of his face, I felt that I was beholding a remarkable trophy of God's goodness and mercy.
Dear one on the brink of hell, this same Jesus is ready to take you up and do as much for you. Will you let Him? He is "rich unto all that call upon Him.”
Come, 'tis Jesus gently calling:
Ye with care and toil oppressed,
With your guilt, howe'er appalling,
Come, and I will give you rest.

Suddenly”

One day two clerks in my office announced that they were going to the funeral of a mutual friend. One observed that he had died very SUDDENLY.
"Yes," I replied, "and so did his daughter. I don't believe that he ever got over that shock.”
That had been a very sad tragedy. She was his only child, a young woman with a wide circle of admiring friends and a devoted fiancé." Apparently, she had everything to make life happy. But she had not the Savior.
One crisp autumn day she and the young man went for a bicycle ride to a nearby town. Returning to the city in the late afternoon, they took a back road to avoid traffic.
This country road was narrow, and just ahead of them was a wagon loaded with field workers. Her companion passed it safely; but, ringing her bell vigorously, she attempted to pass on the wrong side. The wagon driver had pulled over as far as he could to let the young man by; and now swerving to make room for her on the other side, a projection on the vehicle struck her. Instantly she overturned, falling beneath the wagon. Crushed by the heavy rear wheels, she died instantly. Unwarned, SUDDENLY she was ushered into eternity.
What a solemn word to you who go heedlessly on in this reckless world! Beware lest you too may SUDDENLY be destroyed" (Prov. 27:1).
"God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man perceiveth it not." Job 33:14.
Had God been speaking through the sudden death of his beloved daughter to this man who had also died SUDDENLY? No one could say that the poor man had received the Savior, although many witnessed that he had heard the gospel. BUT—"God speaketh once, yea twice.”
A few months after the death of his daughter he was further shocked by the news of the SUDDEN death of her dearest friend. Elsie too was a loved only child. Brilliant and talented, she devoted most of her time to the piano, but showed no interest in eternal things. On the last night of the year at a gay "watch party," she seemed to have thrown all her energies into the celebration. As midnight struck, her merry voice was heard above all the others as they sang "Ring out the old, ring in the new." But SUDDENLY the melodious sound ended in a scream of pain as she fell lifeless to the floor. A brain hemorrhage had cut short a promising young life, and SUDDENLY she entered the great beyond.
My friend, should death SUDDENLY summon you—ARE YOU READY? Are you SAVED? That is the vital question for time and for eternity. If not, I beg you to receive the Lord Jesus NOW. This is your golden opportunity to "prepare to meet thy God" (Amos 4:12). "Today if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts." If you leave Christ out of your life, the Word of God says an appalling thing: "Therefore shall his calamity come SUDDENLY; SUDDENLY shall he be broken without remedy" (Prow. 6:12-15).
And how will the Lord find You when He comes? "The coming of the Lord draweth nigh." He is at the door. All things speak of His august approach: the sinning, reckless world; the lukewarm, backsliding church; the bold-faced scoffers walking in their own lusts and saying, "Where is the promise of His coming?”
There is no time to lose. Beware, "lest coming SUDDENLY He find you sleeping." Mark 13:36. "Repent and believe the gospel." "He that believeth.. shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.”

Believe”… “Are”… “All”

All that believe (not all that work, or pray, but all that believe) on the Lord Jesus Christ raised from the dead are (not hope to be, nor ought to be, but are) justified from all things (not a few, nor the greatest part, but are justified from all things). Yes, forgiveness and justification are the portion of every believer.
And not only so, but Christ is their righteousness, and they stand ever and always before God in Christ. "As He is, so are we in this world." 1 John 4:17. Christ is made unto them wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption (1 Cor. 1:30).
Seeing then that God has such blessing for believing souls, how can you refuse His salvation? "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved." Acts 16:31. Accept Christ at once and seek in loving humility and dependence to live for Him who will soon call His own to be with Himself.

Broken Cisterns

"Don't bother me about conversion! I know all about it; but the truth is, I like the world, and I'm not going to turn religious yet. Take your way, and I'll take mine. Go to your meetings, sing your hymns, and pray; but don't trouble me anymore. I'll be all right some day." With these words Willie left the room where his sister had been pleading with him to accept the Savior.
He was an only son, a kind, affectionate boy, but not saved. His sister Annie was three years older, and had been converted to God for two years. Now she longed to see her brother on the Lord's side. She prayed and sought every opportunity to bring the gospel and his need of it before him. Once and again he had been awakened, but the fear of his companions' sneers had kept him from accepting the way of salvation. He was far from happy; indeed, at times he seemed thoroughly miserable, for whatever his lips might utter in the way of excuse or defense, he was fully aware that the path he was treading had its end in hell. He knew that his mother and sister had the best of it for time as well as eternity.
All that afternoon Willie had been preparing to go out with some friends to enjoy an evening's "entertainment." Just as he was putting on his coat to go, Annie had ventured to say: "How I long to know you are saved, Willie! I wish I could see you going out to spend the evening in the service of the Lord. I wonder when that will be?”
The reply he had made we have just quoted, and then Willie hurried off to join his companions. Annie heaved a sigh as she saw him go, and her oft-repeated heart-breathing went up to the throne that God, with whom all things are possible, would lay His hand on Willie and bring him to Himself.
The evening passed quickly, and Willie returned about ten o'clock. He spoke very little; but from what he did say, Annie gathered that the evening's entertainment had been disappointing. It had not come up to his expectations. Perhaps there was another reason, too: his conscience was ill at ease, and that often spoils a worldling's joy. He went to his room shortly after he came home, and Annie said nothing to him about conversion. But she sang to herself the familiar lines:
"I tried the broken cisterns, Lord,
But ah! the waters failed;
E'en as I stooped to drink they fled,
And mocked me as I wailed.”
Willie knew the meaning of the verse full well, and for whom it was intended. His conscience was awakened by the familiar words as he closed his door to be alone with God.
What passed there between the youth aroused to his lost condition and the seeking Shepherd, I cannot tell; but in about half an hour Annie heard a sound coming from Willie's room as of someone speaking aloud. Fearing he might be ill, she gently tapped at the door. Willie opened it, and before Annie had time to speak, he threw his arms around her and bursting into tears, he said: "We'll sing the chorus of your hymn together now, Annie." He led off with the words:
"Now none but Christ can satisfy,
None other name for me;
There's love, and life, and lasting joy,
Lord Jesus found in Thee.”
Annie joined, scarcely knowing what she sang. Her heart rejoiced that her prayers for her brother were answered. Together, mother, son, and daughter knelt and gave God their thanks, that now this dear one had accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as his Savior—was redeemed by His precious blood shed on Calvary's cross.
Reader, have you been converted? If not, why not? The world has nothing new to give. Its pleasures do not satisfy, and death will end them all. Then comes eternity—an eternity without God, without Christ, in hell. Can you, with open eyes, choose such a portion, or will you today choose Christ?
"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." John 3:36.

No Drink in Hell

Dear friend, unsaved, on your way to eternity, have you ever thought of this: "No drink in hell"?
I suppose the rich man spoken of in the gospels never thought of it; nevertheless, he has been thinking of it for the past hundreds of years. But he began thinking of it too late. So it will be by-and-by with you, if you continue in your present course. No doubt the rich man who fared sumptuously every day loved his wine and other drinks, and had them in abundance; but he finds none of those luxuries in hell. No; "in hell he lifted up his eyes, being in torments." It would seem as if he found himself there unexpectedly.
Oh, what a change, from a life of ease to one of torment! from a life of luxury to one of want—want so great that he begs for even the finger of another, dipped in water, to touch and cool his tongue, and to give the least possible relief; but his prayer is not answered.
Scripture says, "The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God." Are you, dear soul, one of those who forget God? Then hell with all its torments is before you. Someday, unexpectedly, you will most assuredly find yourself there if you continue to reject Christ, God's gift of love to lost sinners.
Oh, dear unsaved one, escape for your life to the only refuge—the Lord Jesus Christ—from the coming judgments. They will fall not on this world merely, but on your own guilty soul stained with ten thousand times ten thousand sins, and possessed of a nature that is enmity against God.
To crown all, you are rejecting Christ. God calls; you will not hear. You may have salvation now. Jesus says: "He that heareth My word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life." John 5:24. This word will never be heard in hell—in hell there is weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth—calling, like the rich man, for a drop of water to cool the parched tongue; but you will find, like the rich man, when too late, that there is no drink in hell.

A Sinner Saved

The kitchen in a farmhouse in a country village had been opened for the preaching of the gospel. The Christian farmer had been round the village inviting the neighbors in; and when the evening came, there was one woman there that they had little expected to see. She was well known to almost all as a notorious character, and more than one would be saying on that evening, "Whatever has brought her here?" While thinking of one motive or another, common to fallen human nature, perhaps no one would think that He who came to seek as well as to save the lost was going after another lost sheep (Luke 15:4), and had Himself drawn her into that kitchen to hear the words of life.
Again and again was Carrie found in her place at the preachings, and no one but He who was drawing her by the cords of love, knew what was going on in that sinful soul.
"O God, Thine everlasting grace
Our scanty thought surpasses far!
Great in almighty gentleness,
Thine arms of love wide open are.”
One evening Carrie did not come and her seat remained empty. One can easily understand, if any notice was taken of it, what would be said by some of the neighbors. "Perhaps, it was the mere novelty of the thing that had attracted her, and at length she has become weary of it"; or, "it may be that the words spoken had been too plainly set forth for the conscience of one who was serving Satan as his willing tool, and so she had got away from the light.”
However, time passed on, and one day the farmer received a message that Carrie was very ill and wished to see him. He went, and found her evidently dying. Having been told that Mr. Blank was there, she looked up and said, "I'm so glad you've come. I did want to see you. I'm going home.”
"Going where?" he said.
"To heaven," she replied.
Desiring to test her ground for such a statement, he asked her, "But how can such a sinner as you be in such a holy, happy place as heaven?”
She turned her eyes, already glazed by death, and answered: "I am a sinner; but there's that precious blood," and then passed away to be with the One who still receiveth sinners.
Simple but blessed testimony, containing repentance toward God and faith toward the Lord Jesus Christ. As one of old, this poor sinner confessed, "I have sinned." And the grace of God could assure her, as it had done to David, "The Lord hath put away thy sin.”
"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." 1 John 1:9.

“Live While You Live

"Live while you live," the epicure will say,
"And give to pleasure every fleeting day.”

"Live while you live," the sacred preacher cries,
"And give to God each moment as it flies.”

Lord, in my view let both united be:
I live to pleasure when I live to Thee.

God Gives”

One Lord's Day evening Emma Jenkins, a young girl seventeen years old, went to hear the gospel preached in the city of Boston. She had often heard a message from God in that same hall before; but never till that evening had she realized how easy it is to be saved—how one need only to trust in Jesus and believe what the Bible says. John 10:28 was the verse that brought Emma peace that night.
"I give unto them [My sheep] eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand.”
"Dear Emma," said a Christian friend to her, as they walked home together after the meeting, "God says, 'I give.' What will you answer? Can you—dare you—say, 'No, I won't take salvation!'? Will you not just answer in faith, and say, 'I will take it'?”
For a few moments the two friends walked on in silence in the still night under the thick trees leading from the gospel hall. Then Emma said, "I will take it, and I do believe salvation is mine through Christ Jesus.”
Oh, how simple! She believed, and is saved for time and eternity. She can rejoice in the knowledge that she is going to spend eternity with the dear Savior who has given her this great gift, and will praise Him forever as she cannot now.
Dear young friend, do you know Emma's Savior as your own? Can you say truthfully, "I have taken the Gift of God"? If not, will you receive Him? Then you will be saved forever and happy for all eternity.
"There is therefore now no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus." Rom. 8:1.
‘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.”
John 3:36.

July

Once and Now

We once were lost, but now are found,
Like sheep we went astray;
We were by sin and Satan bound,
And trod the downward way;
But Thou, O Lord, didst seek and find,
With joy didst bring us home;
And, by Thy love, our spirits bind,
That we no more might roam.

We once were blind, but now we see;
We dwelt in nature's night;
No beauty, Lord, could find in Thee,
Till we were blessed with sight;
But God, in wondrous love and grace,
Did on our darkness shine,
His glory showed us in Thy face,
And gave us light divine.

We once were dead, but now we live;
Our life, O Lord, art Thou,
Who for our sins Thyself didst give,
Beneath our judgment bow.
Eternal life is ours in Thee,
Thou, risen from the dead;
And we, from sin and judgment free,
Are one with Thee, the Head.

How much, O Lord, to Thee we owe,
In whom we thus are blest;
Whose precious blood for us did flow,
And Love divine expressed.
O Savior, Shepherd, Life, and Light,
To Thee we praises bring,
And soon shall, in Thy glory bright,
More worthy anthems sing.

Quickly Passing

A young man of Herculean strength, of which he boasted much, was on his way to the gymnasium. There he met with a terrible accident. As he was balancing himself upon the highest horizontal bar, he slipped and fell to a lower one. His spine was badly injured and paralysis almost at once set in, at first taking a rapid downward course, and then upward toward the head. Solemn was it to be told that the only words which came from the lips of the injured athlete were: "Where am I going? Where am I going?" Reiterating these words, this young man passed out of time into eternity. Gone!—Where?
A young bicyclist was ready to go home after his day's work at the track. He 'phoned his mother, "I will be home in fourteen minutes." The distance was about four miles. Little did he think this would be his last ride home. Speeding around a corner he crashed into a two-horse wagon coming from the opposite direction. In the collision the shaft of the wagon actually' pierced the body of the young man. In a moment he was brought face to face with eternity. Gone!—Where?
"Boast not thyself of tomorrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth." Prov. 27:1.
A Christian man went to his work in a bank one morning. He appeared to be in his usual good health. However, in the evening on returning horde he said to his wife: "I am feeling ill." He soon added, "I am feeling very ill indeed." Medical aid was quickly called. When the doctor came, his examination told him of the seriousness of his patient's case. Without delay he called a specialist for consultation. Nothing could be done to save that life. The Christian was told this. Was he, too, anxious about his own personal safety? No; but his anxiety was for a newly engaged servant to whom he began to tell the gospel of the Savior's finished work and of His glorious resurrection. Before death came, he had won this soul for Christ. His own destiny for the glory had been settled long before, and he had peace.
Reader, at the appointed time death finds us, wherever we are. Things are real then. Before that hour comes for you, we ask: "Where are you going?”
"Passing onward, quickly passing—
Yes, but whither, whither bound?
Is it to the many mansions
Where eternal rest is found?
Passing onward—
Yes, but whither, whither bound?”
"Bodily exercise profiteth [for a] little [time]: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come." 1 Tim. 4:8.

Solid Ground

The cross of Christ is the solid ground of the forgiveness of sins. Justice has owned it; the troubled conscience may rest in it; Satan must acknowledge it.
"Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed." Rom. 10:11.

Wrong Thoughts Set Right

John Newton, it is said, was very plain and practical in his addresses, preaching only Jesus Christ as the Savior of sinners.
A friend of his desired him to visit a woman in prison. He was informed of her wicked way of life, and therefore spoke strongly of the terrors of the Lord and the curses of the law. She listened a while and then laughed in his face.
Upon this he changed his note and spoke feelingly of the Savior of sinners—of what He had done and how He had suffered for guilty, lost souls. He had not talked long in this strain before he saw the tears in her eyes and flowing down her cheeks.
At length she interrupted him, crying, "Oh, sir, do you think there can be any hope of mercy for me?”
John Newton answered, "Yes, if you feel your need and are willing to seek Him in God's appointed way. I am sure salvation is as free for you as for me.”
"Ah, if I had known that," she answered, "I would not have been in this prison! I long ago settled it in my mind that I was utterly lost—that I had sinned beyond all possibility of forgiveness. That made me desperate.”
He visited her several times in the prison; and when she was sent away to serve her sentence he had good reason to believe that she was truly converted. Christ crucified is the wisdom and power of God.

Extract

God can let nothing pass; He can forgive all and cleanse from all, but let nothing pass.

Now - Hereafter - Never

Three words of great meaning, how lightly thought of and often used by man! Let us look for a moment for the use and import of them in the Bible—that precious Word of the blessed God to man.
"NOW." This is especially God's word, because "now is the accepted time; now is the day of salvation." "Now are we the sons of God." "This day (now) is this Scripture fulfilled in your ears." God always speaks of "now" to man—unveiling the future surely; but He speaks to man of his present state and of God's present resources and mind concerning him. What a wondrous and blessed word this "now" is as used by God, both for sinner and saint! Reader, have you learned its reality and import?
"HEREAFTER." This is man's word: "When I have a convenient season I will call for thee." So spoke the corrupt, money-loving, worldly-minded "noble Felix," in answer to God's "now." Man's word is "hereafter," because he seeks to -put off the moment, put off having to do with God, put off searching himself and his own heart, put off confessing his sins, and seeking in a contrite spirit to own "now" before God what he has done and what he is. Thus man meets Satan halfway, for Satan's word is "NEVER." He hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ should shine unto them. Never, so far as he can prevent it, never shall the grace of God, the love of God, the resources of God reach man in his sins. Only let man go on putting off till hereafter the thought of God and having to do with Him, and man's "hereafter" ends in Satan's "never.”
See the rich man and Lazarus. God's "now" for the rich man was turned into "hereafter" by the good things he enjoyed and set his heart on in this life, and passed into the "never" of Satan in the place of eternal torment.
Reader, let me ask you for the sake of your soul's eternal welfare, How do you stand before God as to His "now"? What would the rich man in the place of torment not have given for one moment, one second, of the "now" he had neglected and lost forever! Deluded by the things of time and sense, pleasure and lust, he left all to the "hereafter,” and awoke to find himself eternally in the grasp of Satan's "never.”
God too has a "hereafter" for man; but it is after this life. "Now is the accepted time; now is the day of salvation." "The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared." "The long-suffering of the Lord is salvation." But His "now" becomes "never" to those who refuse His love and grace, His offer of pardon, mercy, and peace. God's time is "now.”

What Kind of a Vessel Are You?

Leaky vessels hold no water. If in Christ, you will be full of water. A vessel with no bottom to it can be kept full of water if in a fountain.
Out of Christ we are broken vessels holding none. There is nothing in the vessel apart from Christ.

Three Travelers

On a railway journey recently, I had opportunity to speak for a few minutes with three different women. The first was a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ. She knew that her sins were forgiven; and she was not afraid to meet the Lord Jesus, for she knew and loved Him as her Savior.
At the station she got out and another woman got in. This one began to talk about the thunder and lightning that was going on at the time, and how much she feared it. This soon led to other subjects, and when I asked her if the Lord Jesus was her Savior, she looked down sadly and said, "Once He was!—perhaps He is still." Poor thing! she was most unhappy. Once she had known His love. Now she had gotten away into the coldness and darkness of the world, so far away that she thought the Lord had given her up. She promised to read a little book I gave her when she bade me good-by at her journey's end.
Here the third passenger got in—an old woman, weary and worn. She had gotten into the wrong section of a train, been carried past the station to which she wanted to go, and was now on her way back. She had made a mistake in her journey which cost her some hours' delay. Sadder still, she was making a far greater and more serious mistake, for if she pursued the way she was going, eternity itself could not rectify it. She would like to get to heaven at the end; and the end could not be very far off. She knew there was only one road that led there; and yet she had not made sure that she was on it. In fact, she would not even stop to think what road she was on; but she hoped to be all right, as she had always tried to be good.
My reader, make sure NOW that you are on the right road, traveling securely and surely to the Father's house. YOU CAN'T BE SAFE UNLESS YOU ARE SAVED.
"There is a way which seemeth right unto a man; but the end thereof are the ways of death." Prov. 14:12.

The Way Through

Joe was a neighbor to George Cutting. His life had indeed been a black one, and no amount of pleading or remonstrance on Mr. Cutting's part availed to change Joe's course. Drinking, swearing, and poaching were the things that most marked him until called upon at the age of sixty to face the end. First hardness, then real anxiety marked Joe's closing days; but joy and peace came at last, as Mr. Cutting found on an afternoon visit to his sick neighbor.
"I was truly surprised," said Mr. Cutting, "on going to his bedside to see Joe extend his hand and hear him say, `Ah, Georgie, my lad, I am not afeered to dee now!'”
"'Why is that, Joe?'”
"`Oh, because Jesus has made a way through death for me. Help me, Georgie, to thank Him for dying for poor old Joe! I shall soon see Him. It won't be long.'”
G. C.—K.
"His dear Son: in whom we have redemption." Col. 1:13, 14.

Apples of Gold

I stood by the bedside of a lady of great natural benevolence; but her good works, -which she vainly recounted, brought her no peace. She writhed in agony, and believed that it arose from her unworthiness in partaking of the sacrament.
It was a terrible sight as she tossed to and fro in physical and mental anguish, burdened by her sins and with none to point her to the Savior. I could only repeat: "The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.”
I was forbidden by her family and doctor to see her again. One text, only one—and no prospect of hearing if it had been received in faith. I had gone there encouraged by a word from her Christian physician: "Remember, God's resources are infinite in bringing souls to Himself.”
In spite of man's prohibition I went again to see the dying woman. A strange servant admitted me. The poor, weary one was in peace; and then I inquired from whence sprang her hope, she repeated: "'The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.' All night you seemed to stand by my side repeating it. I asked someone to read in the Bible; but there was no Bible here. The nurse repeated to me some of Wesley's hymns; but when she was silent I heard again, 'The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.'”
The thief on the cross had but one sentence of the Word of God—and those blessed words of consolation lighted him through the valley of the shadow of death. It was enough. Better are "five words" "fitly spoken" of the Word of life, than a multitude of "thine own words.”
"The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin." 1 John 1:7. "Thy word is truth.”

Mighty to Save

(Isa. 63:1)
Yes, a Savior-God is "mighty to save" weak and helpless sinners that have no might and no strength to save themselves. Jesus Christ the Lord is such a one. Will you not submit yourself to be saved by Him?
He is "mighty to save" us from our sins. "Thou shalt call His name JESUS! for He shall save His people from their sins." Matt. 1:21.
He is "mighty to save" us from that most terrible and to be dreaded of all foes—ourselves. "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me." Gal. 2:20.
He is also "mighty to save" us from that subtle and dangerous enemy, the world. "God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world." Gal. 6:14.
Yes, He is "mighty to save" right through into glory, "seeing He ever liveth to make intercession" for us. (Heb. 7:25.) Reader, believe it with all your heart, for He speaks "in righteousness, 'MIGHTY TO SAVE.'”

Decision for Christ

What does it mean?
The thought of many minds seems to be that deciding for Christ only means making a firm resolution to be on His side. No doubt there is this in it; but there is much more than this. There is an inwrought conviction that, as to myself, my case is utterly hopeless, and that He only is to be trusted as my Savior. I decide in the light of what God is in His holiness and what I am in my sinfulness, that as a Deliverer, Christ, and Christ done, is worthy of my confidence, and He is on my side.
I see that His welcoming "Come" is my only title to go to Him; His precious blood my only shelter from sin's just judgment; His holy name my only passport to glory, and His matchless merits my only fitness when I get there.
Have you been brought to such a decision, my reader? Then nothing can ever transpire, within you or around you, to alter that decision; no discovery of inward corruptions, no lamented fall in the hour of temptation, no subtle argument even of the arch deceiver himself can do it. Had you decided that you were personally worthy, your ways worthy of God, your feelings satisfactory to yourself, it would be different. But the fact is, that before anyone can really decide for Christ as a Savior he must decide against himself as a sinner.
The prodigal did (Luke 15). He said, "I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.”
The publican did (Luke 18). Hear his self-condemning cry, as smiting upon his breast he prays, "God be merciful to me a sinner.”
The dying thief did (Luke 23), when he uttered his confession, "We indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds." He decided against himself. But when he turned to the Lord and expressed the desire of his heart to be remembered by Him when He came into His kingdom, he had manifestly decided for Christ.
Even the Apostle Peter was no exception. "Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord," was his cry. Though he felt unfit to stay, he could not run away.
Every discovery of myself can only cause me to decide more absolutely against myself as to any claim to merit God's blessing; while every day's increase of acquaintance with Christ, every fresh apprehension of His worthiness, only the more confirms me in my decision for Christ.
Do not imagine that there is any merit on your part in deciding for Christ, for in so doing, I repeat, you only arrive at the conclusion that Christ is trustworthy and you are not.
Suppose that you lived on some distant island in the Atlantic, and that you desired to sail to Australia. Suppose further that only two vessels were available on the island, one a large ocean liner calling at the island weekly; the other a tiny shrimp boat of your own manufacture. Between these two vessels you would have to decide. Which of them can you really rely on to carry you safely to the desired destination? That would be the absorbing question. Both you could not choose, and you could not decide on the Australian liner without deciding against your own frail little boat. Nor would you sit down and look at your faith in these vessels to see which you could safely trust. Would you not indeed, when the big liner came in, walk down to the harbor and make every possible inquiry about her seaworthiness? And moreover you would have a good look at her yourself. This done, a mere glance at your own small vessel would be enough to send you home saying, "The ocean liner is the ship for me.”
Now let me ask you a question: "Would any later discovery of the unseaworthiness of your own boat be likely to change your decision as to the liner? No; on the contrary it would the more confirm you in it.
And so is it with decision for Christ. Self is set aside with distrust and condemnation; and while the blessed Savior is presented before our souls by the Holy Spirit as the object of our heart's truest confidence, we are led thankfully and joyfully to say, "Christ for me! CHRIST FOR ME!”
Reader, "what think ye of Christ?" Is He to you "altogether lovely"? Or do you say: "He has no form nor comeliness, that I should desire Him"? At this moment God knows your choice. I plead with you, let it not be SELF! Decide for Christ, and let others know it too.
G. C.
The Happy Path
I know no sweeter way to heaven than through free grace and hard trials together; and one of these cannot well lack the other.
The wages of sin is death;
but the gift of God is eternal
life through Jesus Christ
our Lord.”
Romans 6:23.

August

A Vain Search

Could Satan now his wily task begin
To scan earth's history for the blackest sin;
Explore its wide domain, search high and low,
Both in the present and the long ago—
That sin would ne'er be found too bad to be
Cleansed by the blood of Christ eternally.
1 John 1:7.

Could he yet further scan the lengthy roll
Of past and present for the blackest soul;
Recount its history and sinful ways,
Tell of its wanderings in evil days—
That soul would ne'er be found too bad to be
God's "WHOSOEVER" for eternity.
John 3:16.

The Light

A Christian friend had by some unaccountable means contracted blood poison in a finger. It was so painful and serious that he had put himself under medical treatment.
One day when his finger was nearly healed I accompanied him to the surgery. There we had to await his turn to see the doctor.
A blind man who was suffering from a swelling in his neck was also in this surgery. He and my friend had known each other for many years. A conversation of a sympathetic nature arose between them.
I was much interested in this conversation and my sympathies went out to the blind sufferer. He had lost his sight through a premature explosion at a blasting operation in a mine many years before. At the same time three fingers of his right hand had been blown off. Now he was suffering from an incurable malady and seemed near the end.
What was I to say to one advanced in years and yet perhaps without hope for eternity? Happily, there was One who knew exactly what he needed. This One had watched and was still watching over him in tenderest mercy. He was about to speak straight to his heart and soul, and then end his life of suffering and toil by taking him home to Himself.
A short conversation began between us as to his future. I drew his attention to the vanity of the pleasures of this life and to the grave uncertainty of it. No one was sure whether his riches would not soon vanish away, or his health fail. If he had made no provision for eternity, and death should overtake him, what then?
He replied that he had long wished to have assurance of eternal happiness, but had been unable to obtain the confirmation of faith on this important subject. I replied that probably he had never seen his hopeless condition as a sinner before God; but he freely confessed that his conscience had spoken plainly and frequently as to that matter, and had left him convicted as a sinner without peace.
"Well," I said, "suppose you were wrecked in the midst of an agitated sea, and that all hope of your salvation from a watery grave had departed as far as your ability to save yourself was concerned. Suppose that at such a time a lifebuoy were thrown within your reach. What would you do? Would you not cling to what would secure your safety and entirely depend upon the skill of those who had undertaken to save you?”
"Well," said he, "I never saw it in that light before. I shall not forget it, but will try to lay hold of it.”
Our interview ended, but my friend called to see him a few days later and had the joy of taking a peace-giving message to this thirsty soul. He spoke to him of the precious blood of Jesus, the blood which cleanses from all sin. He assured him that God had provided a Savior for sinners, and that all that had been done by Jesus on the cross was available for him in his present deep need. He told him that the moment he put his personal faith in Christ as his own sin-bearer, salvation would be his. It was at this point that the light dawned upon his soul and the blind sufferer received the Light of life.
Jesus said: "I am the light of the world: he that followeth Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life." John 8:12.
We both visited him on two other occasions and found him relying upon the Lord Jesus alone and firmly resting upon His work for eternal security and joy.
On Christ salvation rests secure;
The Rock of Ages must endure;
Nor can that faith be overthrown
Which "rests upon the "Living Stone.”

The Touch of Faith

"As many as touched were made perfectly whole." Matt. 14:36. As many as touched. Oh! let that word rest upon your mind. Your case is not hopeless. It may be bad enough; it is bad enough—but there is a value in the Savior's blood, a power in His grace to go to the very bottom of your necessity, whatever it may be.
"As many as touched were made perfectly whole." Whatever may be the soul-disease with which you are infected, remember that there is a perfect Savior—One who, if He heals at all, heals entirely. If in faith you touch even the hem of His garment, He makes you perfectly whole.
Jesus does not save by halves; He is a whole Savior! If He saves at all, He saves wholly. His is a perfect cure.
Oh, may the Lord draw your heart to Himself while reading this. Your life on earth may soon be over; the opportunity for touching Him may soon be gone! "Today if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts." Heb. 4:7.

God's Gospel Letter

One very dark Lord's Day night many years ago a servant of the Lord was trudging home after having preached the gospel. A few miles from his own house stood a wee cottage, almost too small for human habitation. On impulse he knocked at the door, and an aged woman opened it inquiring, "Are you the postman?”
Surprised, but ready with an answer, the preacher said: "I have a letter, and it contains good news for you." Briefly he delivered to her the glad tidings of salvation, explaining to her that the gospel of Christ is like a letter from God—a letter full of good news for all.
The old woman was not entirely a stranger to grace, but her heart was burdened with doubts and fears. As she listened to the certainties of God's Word, her sense of insecurity for eternity vanished, and she found peace.
Happy in the present assurance of salvation, she asked who the messenger was, and from whence he came. "Ah, Madam, what matters it? I was sent from God to you," was his reply as he bade her good-night.
"How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace." Isa. 52:7.
"Never a battle with wrong for the right,
Never a contest that He does not fight;
Lifting above us His banner so white,
Moment by moment I'm kept in His sight.”

Energy, Mercy, Rest

"It is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy." Rom. 9:16.
How we admire energy and endurance! It has large value in all of man's undertakings, whether it be the personal energy of an individual or an organization, or even the mechanical energy that carries the airman through space, or pulls us more ordinary mortals through the subways or along the highways to our suburban homes. Energy and speed are characteristics of today.
In the light of revealed truth it is sad to note the energy put forth willingly, yet how mistakenly, to secure eternal reward. Men still ask, "What must I do to be saved?" They are as ready as Naaman of old was to do some great thing. Rituals, alms, penances, sacrifices, self denials—all these will men do and give to satisfy their consciences; but in vain. "It is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy.”
Mercy, the free and full expression of infinite love, God gives to the helpless, penitent sinner. Efforts can merit nothing from a debtor with nothing to pay. An alien and a stranger from God, such coin has no currency value in His realm. Yet He loves the world of guilty mankind. He willeth not the death of the sinner. He sent His Son to seek and to save the lost. He calls them to Himself.
"Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which satisfieth not?" Your labors can never satisfy God. Nor do they please you. They will never save your soul. God alone can save you by His mercy, through His beloved Son. In Him alone is rest. Jesus calls: "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." Matt. 11:28.

The Gospel Call in Song

"In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto Me, and drink." John 7:37.
It was during some special gospel services that it pleased God in His abundant grace and mercy to save my poor lost soul. There was nothing in the preacher's discourse that had affected me. So far as I can remember, no scripture quoted had convicted me of my sinful state. I was still content to continue in my course.
At the close of the meeting an earnest invitation was given to any present who were as yet out of Christ to yield themselves at once. Then the congregation began singing softly:
"I hear Thy gentle voice
That calls me, Lord, to Thee,
For cleansing in Thy precious blood
That flowed on Calvary.
I am coming, Lord,
Coming now to Thee:
Wash me, cleanse me in Thy blood
That flowed on Calvary.”
These were the words that drew me with irresistible power to the precious Savior's side. Through grace given unto me, I there and then decided for Christ. "Just as I was, without one plea," I responded to the gospel call; and I said in my heart, "Lord! I am coming, coming now to Thee." He receiveth sinners; and oh, how I do thank Him that He received me. Still would I praise Him "with every fleeting breath" for all His wondrous love, and grace, and mercy to me. Many years have rolled away since that
"Happy day,
When Jesus washed my sins away.”
And ever since that memorable day, "the old, old story of Jesus and His love" has grown ever sweeter and "sweeter as the years go by." The blessed Book—a closed book to me till the moment "when Jesus came into my heart"—has been opened to me as a storehouse full of treasure to meet my every need.
May you also, my dear unsaved reader, by God's grace be led to say from your heart this very moment—
"I am coming, Lord!
Coming now to Thee.”
Let your decision for Him be immediate. Do not delay; delay is dangerous. He values decision. He graciously waits in this the day of His long-suffering grace and mercy to meet you, to save you from your sins and send you on your way rejoicing in the present, happy, conscious enjoyment of His matchless and ceaseless love. Then will you be privileged to go forth, keeping near Him in your heart's affection, glad to "Tell to others, all around,
Jesus saves! Jesus saves!”
Without delay may this be your happy portion, for His great name's sake.
"Come to Jesus, Come to Jesus Come to Jesus, Just now;
He will save you, He will save you, Just now.”

The Remedy

Passing through a town one day, I saw a man who looked desperately ill leaning against a counter in a shop. In fact, it seemed he must soon pass out of time into eternity. I could not but enter the shop, hoping the Lord would be pleased to give me a word from Himself which might prove a blessing to this man's soul.
Engaging him in friendly conversation, I remarked how poorly he looked. He admitted that he was in very bad shape. I told him that although his body might die, yet he had a never-dying soul which would live forever; but where?
He listened courteously, and eventually asked me if I would answer two questions. I said I would do my best. He asked: "Do you preach that all men are sinners by nature?”
My answer was God's Word: "All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God." Rom. 3:23.... "There is none righteous, no, not one." Rom. 3:10.
"But," the poor man said, "you also preach that God is almighty?”
"Yes," I said, "that is quite true also.”
He replied, "If God is almighty, why did He permit sin to come into the world?”
I told him that one should not question God's purposes or plans, but I would seek to answer his doubts in another way.
"Suppose," said I, "you were called up in the night and were told that your house was on fire; what would you do?”
He replied, "I would try to escape.”
"But would you not first try to find out where and how the fire started?”
"Not me," he said.
"My friend," I replied, "your never-dying soul is far more important than your body, yet you are waiting to seek God after you find out how sin came into the world. You see the results of sin in your poor body and in all creation. You accept the fact of sin. Why not accept its cure?”
I then showed him God's remedy for sin and exhorted him to flee to Christ, the only refuge for poor sinners.
Trusting the Lord to bless this feeble effort to win a soul from death, I gave him my card, hardly knowing at the time why I did so. A few days later his son invited me to come to see his father. He was greatly distressed about his sins. How thankful I was to find him in that condition! Now he was ready for God's remedy, His sure cure for sin.
I asked him: "Do you believe the Bible to be the Word of God?”
He said, "Yes.”
"Then," I said, "I have a message from God to you. `This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.' 1 Tim. 1:15. Do you believe that?”
He appeared to receive the message; and after referring to other scriptures, I left him. In a few days he passed away, trusting in Jesus.
"Oh sinner, seek His face, whose wrath thou canst not bear; Fly to the shelter of His cross, and find salvation there.”
"How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?" Heb. 2:3.

Time - Eternity

Time can be measured; Eternity cannot. Time comes to an end; Eternity is unending and eternal. Time is but a moment, and like a drop in the ocean compared with Eternity.
"Time is short," saith the Spirit of God; our life is "a vapor, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away"; "our days upon earth are a shadow"; and "all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: but the word of the Lord endureth forever.”
Beloved reader, think over these solemn facts. They are well worth giving heed to, for today you are in TIME; tomorrow you may be in ETERNITY. And does not the inquiry spontaneously rise in the mind, "Where shall I spend Eternity?”
If time is so short, your life a vapor, your days a shadow, and all flesh as grass, it is of the utmost importance that you should know where you are going. You are going on to a grand terminus—Eternity. But there are two parts in that Eternity—a deep impassable gulf divides the two, and no means of access from one to the other exists. Heaven is on one side, and hell on the other. "Where are you going?”
Two roads lead to this grand terminus. One is called the "broad road," with its "wide gate"; the other the "narrow way," with its "strait gate." Many go in at the wide gate, and multitudes throng the broad road; while, says the Son of God, speaking of the "strait gate," "few there be that find it.”
One road goes down, down, down to destruction; the ether, up to life and glory. Eternity is the terminus; it receives ALL.
Unsaved reader, "Where are you going?" I will answer, "Out of Time into Eternity!" I beg of you while you are yet in what is called TIME, prepare for ETERNITY.
Christ bids you, beloved reader, to turn to Him, assuring you that "him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out." John 6:37.
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved." Acts 16:31.
"Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation." 2 Cor. 6:2.

Promises and Facts

"Well, Mrs. Johnson, are matters settled with you as to the eternal future?”
"I'm trusting in the promises, sir.”
"Trusting in the promises! I'm trusting in something better than that.”
"Something better! I don't know anything better. What do you mean?”
"I'm trusting in accomplished facts. I'm trusting solely in the finished work of Christ. That is a fact. Trusting in the promises as to the soul's redemption is Old Testament ground. God has fulfilled His promises of old. In due time He sent His Son, who died, having borne the whole judgment of sin and glorified God. He is now the risen and ascended Savior in glory. These are all facts, and I am resting on them. The Word of God is clear. It is no longer a question of promises as to what Christ is going to do, for having obtained eternal redemption He is now in glory. This is a fact. And whoever believes on Him who wrought that mighty work on Calvary is pardoned, saved."
"I never heard it put that way before.”
"Possibly not, but that is the truth.”
Such has been the substance of many a conversation in villages all over the country; and there are many far and wide whose hope is similar.
Now, in the ordinary dealings among men facts are certainly regarded as better than promises.
Let us illustrate it: Suppose you were in debt and a friend promised to pay the account. You would thenceforth live in the hope of its being paid. The measure of your assurance about it would be according to the measure of your confidence in your friend. But if your friend had paid the amount, what then? Why, the moment you heard that, and believed it, you would be at perfect peace about it. The settlement made for you is a fact. It cannot be gainsaid. You can say unhesitatingly, "I know my debt is paid.”
It is an old saying that facts are stubborn things. It is a fact that God sent His Son, that He died, that He glorified Him as to sin, that He is risen and seated at the right hand of God, a present and eternal Savior for any and every poor sinner that believeth. And another blessed fact for all such is, that through His finished work every believer is eternally saved.
Now, what say you before we close? Will you trust in the great fact of Christ's death and blood shedding on Calvary for sinners? Or will you go on in unbelief, ever running the terrible risk of banishment from the light of God's glorious presence into the blackness of darkness forever? 'Which is it to be? DECIDE.
The Lord Jesus said: "It is finished.”
"God commendeth Ills love
toward us, in that while we
were yet sinners, Christ
died for us.”
Rom. 5:8

September

Made Clean!

Lord, beneath Thy searching eye,
See a helpless sinner lie,
From whose heart goes up the cry,
"Unclean, unclean!”

Leper-like disease within,
Hidden deeper than the skin,
All my nature full of sin—
"Utterly unclean!”

To Thy holy eye alone
This my case is fully shown,
All the depths of evil known,
"Proving me unclean.”

Priest of God upon the throne,
Who for sin didst once atone,
Having borne the wrath alone,
"Thou canst make me clean.”

“That’s Me!”

Some years ago a young army officer was quartered with his regiment in the West Indies. Yellow fever had broken out among them and several of the soldiers had died. Following closely on the death of the enlisted men came the death of a fellow officer, also a victim of fever.
Our young friend was in command of the escort which fired the last salute over the grave of his late comrade. He listened soberly while the chaplain read the burial service, and on the march back to camp he sought an opportunity for a conversation with him. This man was a real child of God and was deeply concerned about the souls of the men in the army. As he talked to the young officer he was looking earnestly to the Lord for a word to touch his conscience. At last it came, as the soldier blurted out the burden of his thoughts: "Just think! Only five days ago he was with us on the march. Now—WHERE?”
Quickly the answer came, "Where do you think your soul would have been, had you died instead of him?”
The officer hesitated, and then spoke slowly, "I think I would have been in hell.”
"That is a very solemn answer; God will remember it," replied the other, adding, "I trust that you will remember it too.”
Five years passed away. This same officer and his regiment were stationed in another quarter of the globe. He had passed through many vicissitudes, many dangers, through seasons of smallpox, ship fever, and cholera. They had sobered his mind and often recalled to him his own words: "I think I would have been in hell.”
About this time he was much in contact with an older officer, a friend of his father, who welcomed him to his quarters. One evening he said to the young man: "In the next room there is going to be a Bible reading tonight for young officers. If you care to come in, you are welcome. If not, here are some candles and plenty of books. You can amuse yourself here until we have finished.”
However, he preferred to go in and sit with the others. It was all very new to him, and he understood little that was said; yet he had to own, "These men have something, a happiness I have not." This impressed him deeply.
One evening he sat thinking over the past. He asked himself: "What is my life? It is eat, drink, die, and be lost!”
Beloved reader, what is your life? And what will your end be? So soon your journey here will be over. Then, for you—whither bound? Well, thank God, this officer did think it worth pondering over. He asked himself, "What is my life?" His conclusion was, "It is eat, drink, die, and be lost!”
Now on that evening he was thoroughly in earnest. But he was without a guide. He was sailing life's sea without a chart. He did not have a copy of the only Book that could give light in the darkness. He knew his deep need, but where would he find relief for his soul's distress? He would "turn over a new leaf"!
The morning following this memorable evening of earnest resolve he bought a Bible and began reading the book of Matthew. (Oh, that God would open his eyes!) He read with deep interest, seeking diligently a way of peace. He tried to mend his ways; to be more pleasing to God; to assure his final entry into heaven. He was sincerely exercised; but at every turn he was discouraged by his own failures. So soon each "new leaf" must record that, in spite of his strivings, he did "come short.”
"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God." Rom. 3:23.
When our friend had finished reading Matthew he turned to Galatians. In the third chapter he was startled by the tenth verse:—"For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.”
Reading that verse he exclaimed, "That's me! I am keeping myself under the curse by trusting to my doings.”
In despair he then prayed, "Lord, what shall I do? I am trying to do my best.”
Like David in Psa. 120, verse 1, he now found that he had come to Him who hears. "In my distress I cried unto the LORD, and He heard me.”
Taking his Bible again he read on to the 13th verse: "Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree.”
Again he exclaimed, "That's me! I am redeemed from the curse of the law—Christ being made a curse—HE TOOK MY PLACE." The scales fell from his eyes. God had answered his prayer, and had opened his eyes. Opened his eyes on what? On whom? On Christ on the cross! His eyes were turned from self to the Savior; from his own doings, his puny works, to the mighty work of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross. On the cross for him! Faith laid hold of the Savior, and joyfully he cried, "HE TOOK MY PLACE.”
Can you say with him, "He took my place"? Your sins are your only claim upon the Savior, for "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners." 1 Tim. 1:15. And the precious blood of Jesus is our only cleansing to fit us for the presence of God.
"Ye who sometime were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ." Eph. 2:13.
"He took the guilty culprit's place
And suffered in his stead:
For man (oh, miracle of grace!),
For man the Savior bled!”

What Am I Living for?

Fifty years after I have left this world I shall be able to give a very definite answer to the question, What have I lived for? But I have not left it yet, and though it should be fifty years before I am called upon to do so, I ought, even now, to be able to find solid satisfaction in the answer to the question, What am I living for?
If I am living for myself, for my own cherished purposes, my own selfish gratification, I am serving a master who is never satisfied, do for him what you will, and whose wages will be paid in the bitter, bitter fruit of heart-sickening disappointment.
If it is Christ I am living for; if it is His pleasure I am seeking; if it is the comfort and profit of those that love Him I am set on—then I shall be made conscious of His approval now, and hear the public expression of His approval in that day. —Geo. C.

A Basket of Grapes

Sometime ago I went to call on an old lady—bedridden and without Christ. She received me very pleasantly, and we had a long conversation.
Yes, she said, she knew she was a sinner—a lost sinner—and owned it. She desired most fervently to be saved. She knew that no works of her own could avail before God. She believed the Lord Jesus to be the only Savior of sinners. She had often cried to Him to save her, but no answer had come to her cries as yet.
After finding out that she was a truly seeking soul, ripe for salvation, I asked: "Now what is the hindrance? Why do you not know that you are saved? You tell me that you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, that He is able and willing to save you, and that you are most willing to let Him save you. Yet you are not sure of salvation. Do you think He has anything more to do for your salvation?”
"Oh, no! I'm sure His work is all finished. He said so on the cross.”
"Quite true; only I suppose you think there must be something wrought in you, before you can be sure you are saved?”
"Yes, that's just it," she replied.
"And what, pray, is lacking in you?”
"Well, sir, I don't think I'm thankful enough for all He has done for me. I think if I felt more thankful, I should know I was saved.”
"Oh, I see where you are," I replied. "Now tell me, suppose I were to send you a basket of grapes tomorrow morning. What is the first thing you would do?”
"Oh, of course I would thank you," replied the old lady most energetically.
"Well, suppose on the other hand you sent me a basket of grapes. What do you think is the first thing I would do?" I replied.
"You would thank me, wouldn't you?”
"Not first.”
"Why, what would you do?" she asked most eagerly.
"I would take them. Then I would send you a hearty message of thanks.”
"I see it! I see it!" exclaimed my old friend, as the tears of joy welled down over her wrinkled features. "I've just got to take salvation first, and then thank the Lord for what He has given me.”
"Exactly so. The gift of God is eternal life.' What He gives we have only simply to accept, and then thank Him for time and eternity.”
"Dear me, how simple it is!" she exclaimed, falling back on her pillows. "I always thought I must feel something within-something I never have felt. Now, thank God, I see it all clearly. It is so simple, I wonder I didn't see it before." Thus she entered into sweet peace, and rest in the Lord.
"For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Rom. 6:23.
What GOD is
Determines what GOD does;
What GOD does
Proves what GOD is—LOVE.

His Own

HIS OWN BY THE FATHER'S GIFT. "Thine they were," says the Son, "and Thou gavest them Me." The Father took us up in eternal counsels that He might give us to the Son. We shall be forever the expression to the Son of the Father's love to Him. How precious to think of it!
HIS OWN BY HIS CHOICE OF US. "I have chosen you out of the world." When Jesus was here He called to Him whom He would. It is just as really that He has chosen us. He wants us for Himself; He must have us: and when we receive Him, we are then His own.
HIS OWN BY REDEMPTION. "I am the Good Shepherd: the Good Shepherd giveth His life for the sheep." We cost Him His life. He never could have had the joy of having us if He had not laid down His life for us.
HIS OWN IN THE AFFECTION OF OUR HEARTS. "The two disciples heard Him speak, and they followed Jesus." He had not said a word to them yet; but the enraptured gaze of John the Baptist had rested upon Him, and the joy of his heart had burst forth in the involuntary expression: "Behold the Lamb of God." And in simple, spontaneous affection the two went after Him, His own in their affections. May God give us hearts like theirs!
HIS OWN TO BE LOVED BY HIM. "As the Father hath loved Me, so have I loved you." Could anything equal this? Does it not fill your heart with unspeakable affection and joy? If we had, like Paul, suffered the loss of all things here for His sake, would not His love be sufficient compensation?

From Death to Life

A Christian mother sat in her room toward evening. She had a large grown-up family and many cares, chief among them just now being the increasingly poor health of a dear son. She had that day been much moved at hearing of great blessing in a neighboring building through the preaching of a young man. "Oh, if my dear boy were only like him," she thought. "If he would even hear him, how happy I would be!" But she felt her own weakness. Ralph was almost too ill to go out at night. At his work during the day he was exposed to teaching the very reverse of what she craved for him. Still, "is anything too hard for the Lord?" Inwardly she resolved that, at all events, she would go to the preaching herself, for she felt that her own faith needed strengthening.
As she sat there that afternoon she listened and she prayed. She heard Ralph come home from the city, wearily climb the stairs, and go into his own room nearby. Then she heard him throw himself upon his bed and—could her ears be mistaken?—she heard a groan and her own name. In an instant she was beside him, and, with her arms about him, she heard, "Oh mother, I'm so ill, and so miserable!”
These were welcome words to her; even if his outward man was perishing, his soul was not, and she cared for it more than for his body now. Gently she told him what she had been thinking of, and asked him to escort her to the service. She did not say that it was for his soul that she yearned.
They went; they found the hall so full that they were obliged to stand. Then the mother lost sight of her son in the crowd, and again her faith failed. What if he had left in disgust? Should she follow him? No-she would listen for herself.
At the close of the meeting she found him awaiting her in the porch with a changed face, and by degrees she learned that a gentleman seeing his delicacy had made room for him, and that every word the preacher spoke had come home to him. Tears had stolen to his eyes; and as he furtively brushed them away, he became aware of a lady sitting beside him with an earnest face, who was evidently praying for him. It made a deep impression on him, for he was aware that she knew what was passing in his soul, and before leaving she turned and grasped his hand. He was rescued from death and from Satan that night, and brought to God and life.
There was joy in the hearts of mother and son as they walked home; joy too in the presence of the angels of God, for Father, Son, and Holy Ghost had sought and found the lost. The son which had been dead was alive. He could say, "The living, the living, he shall praise Thee, as I do this day.... The Lord was ready to save me." Isa. 38:19, 20.
Let each one who reads this ask himself: "Do I know the One who has the keys of death and hell, and who says, 'Fear not... I am alive for evermore'"? Rev. 1:17, 18. He died that we might live.

Truth in the Inward Parts

If you are to be happy it must be with God. In Christ I get all my sins brought out in the day of grace in the presence of divine perfect love. The perfectness of the love that is in Christ makes me glad to be in the light. It shows me all that I am. It gives truth in the inward parts. God says, "You are the vilest sinner. You are laboring and heavy laden. Now you may come to Me and rest in Me. It will be all right." Oh, it is a blessed thing to find truth in the inward parts, and to have confidence in a divine love that is above all evil.
Have you had all your sins entirely out before God? They are better known to Him than you can know them. Christ has confessed my sins in the presence of a God of judgment. There is divine competency to bear our sins. We are in the dust as to ourselves, but we look up to God in the consciousness and certainty that He loves us as He loves Jesus Himself. That is the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free. Have you that faith in the Lord Jesus Christ to know that God looks at you through Him, as white as snow? Does the light of God's holiness make you happy or uncomfortable?
"Unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and His Father; to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen." Rev. 1:5,6.

Extract

The law may torture the conscience, but grace humbles the soul.

God’s Heart vs. Man’s Heart

The gospel begins at the dose of God's experience of man's heart and calls us from that in order to give us joy and peace from the experience of what is in His heart.
Nothing gives such a sense of the horribleness of sin, nothing such a testimony to the judgment of God against sin, as seeing Christ under it; and yet nothing is such a testimony of the love of God to the poor sinner.
The cross was the perfect hatred of man and the perfect love of God, doing for him that hated Him that which put away the hatred and blotted out the sin that expressed it. There is nothing like the cross. It is the meeting of the perfect sin of man with the perfect love of God—sin risen up to its highest point of evil and gone, put away and lost in its own worst act. J. N. D.

Satisfied

Some years ago I occasionally visited an old man who occupied a single room in a country inn. He had at one time been in comfortable circumstances, but had lost nearly all his money, and had out-lived all his relations and friends.
Before he became too feeble he had been a regular churchgoer. He considered himself, and was considered by others, a very religious man. He read his Bible daily because he thought it was right to do so. In talking to him I found that he had not peace with God, although he tried to persuade himself that he had nothing to fear.
After a time he became bedridden, and was so deaf that it was hard to talk to him. The best one could do was to find various verses of Scripture, and show them to him in his own large Bible. Saying a word or two now and then, one could look to God to speak to him through His own blessed Book.
After a time it became evident that the Word of God was sweeping away his "refuge" of lies. He became more and more uneasy. One day a message came to me that he was very troubled, and would like a visit. On the way to his lodging I looked to the Lord for a message from Himself to the poor distressed heart. I needed His help especially because of his deafness. When I went into the old man's room he was sitting up in bed, turning the pages of his large Bible, and looking very unhappy.
"Oh," he said, "I am so glad you have come. I have been reading, and thinking, and praying; but I can't be satisfied with myself.”
I put my lips to his ear and said, "God does not ask you to be satisfied with yourself! He is satisfied with Christ, and He wants you to be too.”
He looked at me and said slowly, "Satisfied with Christ! I couldn't be dissatisfied with Him." He kept repeating, "I couldn't be dissatisfied with Him.”
The trouble was gone, and it never returned. He was content to be satisfied with Christ, instead of with his thoughts, his reading and his prayers.
Dear reader, are you trying to be satisfied with yourself, your prayers, your doings—perhaps your reading the Bible regularly—instead of resting simply in Christ? Will you not hear His Word when it tells you that Christ is all? Rest, then, in Him alone.
"Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee." Isa. 26:3.
The name of the LORD is a
strong tower: the righteous
runneth into it, and is safe.”
Proverbs 18:10

October

Saved

Past the withering cloud of judgment,
Hush'd the tempest's roar:
Sin and Satan's power can triumph
Nevermore.

Soon enthroned in heavenly glory,
Savior, Lord, with Thee,
I shall share the golden triumphs
Won for me.

Savior, Shepherd, Lord of glory,
Teach me now Thy way:
Lead me in the path Thou troddest,
Till that day.

Till that day of cloudless morning
Dawns upon my soul:
And the gladsome songs of victory
Endless roll.

Keep me, Savior, in Thy footsteps,
Cleaving close to Thee:
Bearing shame and rude rejection
Patiently.

Let Thy love and sweet approval
Bear me up and on:
Pressing homeward to the goal, where
Thou art gone.

Wondrous Grace

In the old days before "chain stores" were known, there were many one-man businesses flourishing in the larger towns. A fairly prosperous head of such a business used to travel over town and country selling his goods, leaving his store and office in charge of a trusted clerk as manager.
This clerk kept the books, was responsible for cash transactions, looked after the stores, saw to deliveries and all inside matters generally. It was a position of trust which for a time he filled satisfactorily.
After several years the owner of the business noticed certain small irregularities which made him suspicious as to their causes. He decided to look into things more closely, to examine privately the accounts, and to have the stock taken. To his surprise the investigations proved that his fears were only too well justified, and that he was being systematically robbed. False entries in the cash book and discrepancies in the record of stock on hand came to light. He was grieved to find that the man he had trusted, and one whom he personally liked, had let him down so badly. The embezzlement and loss could not be overlooked.
It was with a heavy heart he called the clerk into his private office. He showed him the result of his investigations and asked him to account for his misdeeds.
The clerk, who thought he had carefully covered his tracks, was speechless when he saw the books and papers spread out and heard his employer's request for explanation. Quickly realizing the gravity of his situation, and knowing he was liable to a term of imprisonment and severe punishment, the man dropped to his knees in fright and begged for mercy.
"Oh, sir," he cried, "don't hand me over to the police! Don't send for the police! What shall I do?”
His master looked down at the poor white-faced man groveling at his feet. He said nothing; but paused for a moment reflecting how to act. He was a real Christian and was grieved to learn the perfidy of his trusted employee. He was even more sorry for the wretched man's wife and little family. What disgrace and sorrow would be theirs, the real sufferers, if the law were invoked! He decided to take a further risk for their sakes.
"No, I shall not send for the police," he quietly said. "Oh, sir, how can I thank you! I know I deserve to go to jail. I do thank you, sir!" He wept in his relief. To himself he said: "My poor wife, how could I face her? The children, too, if they knew. How could we live?”
Another long pause; then bidding him to get up, his employer looked fixedly at him. "I shall not dismiss you from my service," he said.
"What?" cried the astonished man, bursting into tears. "You are not getting rid of me, sir?”
"No, I shall keep you on in your old job.”
The astounded man could scarcely believe his ears. He stuttered, "You will keep me on, sir?”
"Yes. I shall cancel all these old books; I will stand the loss, and straighten things out. You can make a fresh start in your old post as bookkeeper.”
So absolutely taken aback was the now thoroughly repentant man that he stuttered out in his surprise, "But, sir, it can't be done. You don't know me, sir, how deceitful I am.”
"An entirely fresh start is what I want you to make," the Christian said kindly. "A fresh start with Christ.
"God in His great love did not spare His own dear Son, but gave Him up to die on Calvary that my sins against Him might be blotted out.
" The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.' 1 John 1:7.
"All praise to that crucified Savior, through faith in His precious blood, God has forgiven me, His enemy, and made me His child, a joint heir with His dear Son to the mansions in glory for all eternity.
“The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: and if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ.' Rom. 8:16,17.
“Now you, my trusted employee and friend, have sinned against me, despoiling me of my goods and money. How can I show you His mighty love to me, if I be not willing to follow His example?
" 'Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow His steps.' 1 Peter 2:21.
"In His name I forgive you your sin against me; but my heart's desire for you is that you might be saved. Far worse than your sin against me is your sin against God in refusing the sacrifice of His dear Son, Jesus, for you. He offers you pardon and peace now and eternal bliss in the world to come. Will you not take Him now?
“Tor the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ; who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.' “Titus 2:11-14.
The wondrous grace, the matchless mercy of a sin-hating God was thus made plain to the wretched man. Humbly and thankfully he received the Savior as his full payment for all sin. A soul was won for Christ, and the business man secured the faithful service of a grateful employee.

A Savior

How sweet is the name and title that Jesus bears—a Savior!
"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord." Luke 2:11.
How well that name suits us as lost sinners!
"Thou shalt call His name Jesus: for He shall save His people from their sins." Matt. 1:21.
It is of all importance that we should know and accept the truth that we are really lost sinners before God.
"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God." Rom. 3:23.
We cannot be patched up by any religious process that can fit us for the presence of God. Our case is desperate, and nothing less than a Savior will meet it. Our hoping to go to heaven, unless we are saved by belief in that Savior, is a delusion.
We came in contact some time ago with a young woman who talked very nicely about going to heaven. Having some doubts about her soul's condition, we asked her how long she had been saved. She replied: "I cannot say I am saved, but I have been brought up to it.”
We fear she represents a large class of misguided souls. We would say in all love and faithfulness that this being "brought up to it" is a delusion of the devil.
"The soul that sinneth, it shall die." Ezek. 18:20.
And God is no respecter of persons. (Rom. 2:11.)
Of course, one may be saved while young—thank God, many are! But whether young or old, be assured of this, dear reader: it is a personal, living Savior with whom you have to do, and He alone can fit you for God's presence.
Now, God in His love has provided this Savior. Jesus "appeared once to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself." He has "suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God.”
"Him (Jesus) hath God exalted with His right hand to be a Prince and a Savior.”
"He is able," the Scripture says, "to save to the uttermost all that come unto God by Him.”
We can assure the reader that He is not only able, but that He delights to save the needy, lost sinners. The Scripture further says: "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved," but the name of Jesus.
Weary sinner, listen to His tender loving words: "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
"Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." Rom. 10:13.

God’s Handwriting

God has chosen three times to record in His own handwriting that which He wished man specially to notice. Once the finger of the mighty God traced the letters in the solid stone; a second time on the plaster of a king's palace wall; a third time in the drifting sand. We hear of things written in heaven, but how solemn when God stoops to write on earth!
The Writing on Stone
In Deut. 9:10, God wrote the law on two tables of stone -"written with the finger of God." God is holy; man is sinful, and has no righteousness of his own that will enable him to stand in the presence of a righteous God. If Israel of old wished for God's favor, they must walk before Him in a way to obtain it. God therefore gave Israel the law, being a standard of what He required from man; so that Israel could now say-"It shall be our righteousness if we observe to do all these commandments before the LORD our God, as He hath commanded us." Deut. 6:25. Yes, "if." No one but the man Christ Jesus ever attained to that, or ever could.
God wrote the law in stone, a type of its unbending, enduring claims on man. For though it finds a man helpless to keep it, yet it abates not one jot of its claims. "Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them." Gal. 3:10.
The Writing on Plaster
In Dan. 5:5, 24-28, again God writes, this time the sentence of judgment on a guilty king. On the plaster of the palace wall, over by the candlestick, where the light enabled all to see it, a Hand was seen writing: "Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting." No need to record that on stone! On plaster, emblem of weakness and speedy decay, that awful sentence would stand as long as needed. "That night was Belshazzar slain.”
Babylon's mighty city has long been blotted off the face of the earth; the plaster wall, with God's handwriting on it, long ago decayed, its dust become the sport of desert winds. But your condemnation, my reader, if still unsaved, stands recorded on the pages of God's own Word, which shall endure forever. "This is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil." John 3:19.
The Writing on the Ground
In John 8:3-11 we behold God writing the third time. In the One stooping to write on the ground we see "God manifest in flesh." The Jews had brought to Him a woman guilty of adultery. Moses said "that such should be stoned, but what sayest Thou?" they ask. The Lord from Sinai had given that command. Can He now say contrary to His own command through Moses? He is silent; He stoops, and writes on the ground. Scoffers say it was to gain time to think. Away with such Satanic insinuations, as though man, a thing of dust, could put his Creator into a dilemma! His silence! What a proof, even under the law, that "God is slow to anger," that "judgment is ever His strange work"! At last He answers the Jews. "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.”
If stone flinging is to begin, all around must be stoned. Again He writes on the ground. Writes what? Scripture says not what He wrote, but records what He said.
Christ is seen as God delighting in mercy. Did He then wink at sin, and annul His own laws? Nay; He had come to take "the guilty culprit's place, and suffer in his stead." He had not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them. The Jews had made Him the judge in this case. I love to think that in that capacity, while He had written the law in stone, He wrote possibly the sentence of death on the ground where the next gust of wind could blow it away! It was a sentence no man was able to execute, and the Lord, alone qualified to do so, would not. He was going to die for such as she, and thus the law would be carried out. As a man who writes on the shore may see the waves wash it all away, so what the Lord wrote was never recorded—only the gracious words of forgiveness.
The waves of God's awful judgment soon rolled over Him, and wrung from Him the cry, "All Thy waves and Thy billows have gone over Me.”
My reader, are you convicted of sin, and do you find, like this woman, there is no escape? Have you been brought into God's presence about it as she was? Oh, listen to the words: "Neither do I condemn thee." Oh, what a God, to take such infinite pains to draw us to Himself! Oh, what a Savior, in such wondrous pity and grace to love us so much as to die for us, in order that His precious blood might cleanse away our sins and fit us for His own presence throughout eternal ages!
Accept this Savior now!

Old Betty

Betty was brought to the knowledge of the Lord in her old age; and from the time of her conversion she never thought she could do enough for Him who loved her, and had washed her from her sins in His own blood. She went about doing good. She was ready to speak of her Lord and Master to all she met. She would nurse the sick, visit the afflicted; she would give to those poorer than herself portions of what kind, Christian friends bestowed on her. In short, she was always abounding in the work of the Lord.
But in the midst of this happy course, she caught a violent cold and rheumatism set in. She was confined to her bed. There she lay coughing and in pain, day after day, week after week, till the Lord took her home.
On her sickbed Betty was as happy as she had been in her active duties. She was much in prayer, and repeated hymns and passages of Scripture about her blessed Lord to whom she was going.
One day Betty was visited by a Christian who had long known her. He was astonished to see his once active and useful old neighbor so happy as she lay quietly in bed, and he said, "I little expected, Betty, to see you so patient; it must be a very great trial to one of your active mind to lie here so long, doing nothing!”
"Not at all, sir, not at all," said Betty. "When I was well I used to hear the Lord Jesus say to me day by day, `Betty, go here for Me; Betty, go there; Betty, do this for Me; Betty, do that.' And I used to do it as well as I could. Now I hear Him say every day, `Betty, just lie still and cough for Me.'”
"To obey is better than sacrifice." 1 Sam. 15:22.
"I have learned in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content." Phil. 4:11.

Your Portion

Many years ago a gentleman was driving through a remote village. In front of one of the houses, straw had been laid down. He learned on inquiry that the wife of the gentleman who lived there was thought to be dying, and the straw was to insure greater quiet. She would leave behind her several children, the eldest only twelve years old.
The gentleman, Mr. Alden, was deeply touched at the thought of these little ones soon to be left motherless. He could not forbear alighting from his horse and going to the door to offer his sympathy.
A few days later he returned to inquire after the invalid. To his surprise he learned that, contrary to expectation, she was slowly recovering.
During her convalescence, he was one day permitted to see her for a few minutes. The peace and joy in her countenance so impressed him that he went away firmly persuaded that she had a source of happiness which he did not possess. "They looked unto Him, and were lightened," she had said to him; but these beautiful words of Scripture conveyed no meaning to him.
Later her husband, Mr. Hall, an earnest servant of the Lord, paid a visit to Mr. Alden. He happened to be out, but his wife, a Christian, invited Mr. Hall in. He learned while there, that she was very uneasy as to Mr. Alden's state of soul, and was praying for him.
"Have you ever spoken to him about his soul?" asked Mr. Hall.
"Oh, no; it would be impossible! He is so proud. No one would venture to approach him on such a subject.”
A few days later, Mr. Hall called again to see Mr. Alden. Mr. Hall took the opportunity of asking him the simple question, "Do you know what it is to have the forgiveness of your sins?" Not wishing to give account of himself, Mr. Alden quickly changed the subject.
Weeks passed, and again the two were together. This time they were walking in Mr. Alden's beautifully landscaped garden, and admiring some new improvements. Taking advantage of a pause, Mr. Hall said, "'What shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?' If the Lord Jesus were to come tonight, would you be ready to meet Him?”
Again Mr. Alden made no reply. His companion had to bid him good-by, feeling that God alone could work in his soul and cause the light of life to enter.
When Mr. Alden went into his house he said to his wife angrily: "What business has he to come talking to me about my soul? It is no affair of his. I'll do all right as I am.”
Nevertheless he was uneasy. The Word of God is quick and powerful, and at last it had reached his heart and conscience.
That night he could not sleep. His sins rose up before him and he was seized with despair at the thought of his lost condition. He dreamed that he was slipping down into hell; but at the moment when all hope seemed gone, the Lord drew near to deliver him. He saw a nail-pierced hand stretched forth to save him, and he knew that it was the Savior who had died for him. With joy he welcomed Him, and believed that his sins were forgiven. He awoke with the knowledge that Jesus had borne them on the cross. Now there was nothing left for him to do but to praise and bless the One who had shown him such grace. The night of anguish was succeeded by a morning of joy which would last through eternity.
Mr. Alden was in the habit of reading prayers every morning in the presence of his family and the servants. To their astonishment that morning they saw the dear man fall on his knees. Instead of opening the prayer book, they heard him in a voice trembling with emotion give thanks to God for saving him during the night, and forgiving his sins through the precious blood of Christ.
And now let me ask you, dear reader, what portion you have chosen, an earthly or a heavenly one? Are you satisfied to possess only the things of earth? This world is hastening on to destruction, and its fleeting pleasures can never satisfy you. But the Lord Jesus has given Himself for you, to redeem you from it. He offers you eternal love, everlasting joy, and a heavenly portion with Him in the glory. How can you refuse Him?
"Father, I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am; that they may behold My glory, which Thou hast given Me." John 17:24.

The Look of Faith

FAITH is the soul's upward—not its inward nor its outward—look. If you want to be miserable, look in. If you want to be distracted, look out. If you want to be happy, look up, and see Jesus only.
“The harvest Is past, the summer
is ended, and we
are not saved.”
Jer. 8:20.
"Believe on the Lord Jesus
Christ, and thou shalt
be saved.”
Acts 16:31

November

Remembered No More

I'll give you a piece of good news today:
My sins are remembered no more!
For Jesus has taken them all away,—
My sins are remembered no more!

As far as the east is away from the west,
My sins are remembered no more!
And now my soul is at perfect rest,
My sins are remembered no more!

My transgressions were many, my soul was black,
My sins are remembered no more!
For God has cast them behind His back;
My sins are remembered no more!

You may search the depths of the deep, deep sea,
My sins are remembered no more!
At the judgment throne or eternity,
My sins are remembered no more!

Let men remember and foes accuse:—
My sins are remembered no more!
If God forgets, they may say what they choose,
My sins are remembered no more!

They're forgiven, forgotten, and cleansed and gone,
My sins are remembered no more!
They're atoned for and covered by God's dear Son;
My sins are remembered no more!
"As far as the east is from the west, so far hath He removed our transgressions from us." Psa. 103:12.
"And their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more." Heb. 8:12.

A Wooden Leg

It was Saturday night. The trains had brought into the town a goodly number of country shoppers, and in consequence the main street was well filled.
Where the throng was most numerous an old man stood back on a side street and proclaimed God's glad tidings.
"What you need, my friends," he was saying, "is life—God's gift of eternal life. Yes, it is free; it is a gift without money and without price. For whosoever will!
"Whosoever! That is for you, for me, for everybody who will believe in the One whom God sent.
"'For God so loved the world,'"—and here the words were uttered as if they were a grand theme in the heart of the speaker—" 'that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.'
"None can work for it. No churchgoing, no almsgiving, no good works can buy it. You may go to church all your life, and go to hell at the finish. You may live a respectable life, always doing good works, and hell may be your portion at the end.
"There is no life in doing the best you can. It is something like my wooden leg," and the aged preacher stumped a few paces in emphasis of his statement.
"It has no life in it, but it is very useful; in fact, I could not get on without it. But I could chop it off, and it would make no material difference to my body. It is only strapped on, and has no life connection.
"Good deeds, religiousness, and the best you can do are nice enough in their way; but there is nothing in them to fit you for God's presence.
"God offers life connection with Himself through His beloved Son. Will you have it? None can merit it, but it is the gift of God to poor, needy sinners who will believe in God's provided Savior. Own to Him your lost condition! Trust in the Lord Jesus Christ and receive God's great gift of eternal life.”

”Have You a Mother?”

"Not me: not for nobody!" was the reply of a sailor who had been invited to a gospel preaching. He certainly did not look like a very promising subject. His face showed plainly his dissolute habits, and the don't-care way in which he folded his arms, together with his determined look, would have deterred many a one from addressing him again. The evangelist spoke kindly to him, and pleaded with him to hear the Savior's voice.
"None of your cant for me," said he with an oath.
The preacher noticed that the man's hair was turning gray, so he said: "My friend, you were young once; you are no longer so. Have you a mother?”
The rough sailor looked at him with a piercing glance. The muscles of his face worked; his bosom began to heave. Struggling in vain to hide his emotion, he turned his head aside; but the bitter tears ran down his cheeks and he sobbed out, "A mother! A mother! How came you to know about my mother? Yes, I had a mother once—a good mother, a praying mother. I broke her heart and sent her to the grave. What would she think if she could see me now?”
The joints of his harness were pierced. That question had touched a hidden spring. It broke up the hardened profligate. The Spirit of God entered the breach and wrought mightily. Another self-condemned, repentant sinner listened to God's blessed Word as the evangelist quoted Isa. 1:18:
"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”

Yourself or Himself

Many years ago a young girl in a country place glanced at an open Bible that lay on the table in the house of a friend. These words attracted her attention: "Who shall ascend into the hill of the Loan? or who shall stand in His holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive the blessing from the LORD." Psa. 24:3-5.
By these words God spoke to her soul; she was pierced, convicted. "Oh," she thought, "that shuts me out from blessing, for my heart is not pure. It has been full of vanity all my life, and nothing else.”
She turned sorrowfully away to mourn over her condition as a guilty sinner before a holy God. "I could not get away from that scripture," she said afterward, "and for seven weeks I was in the deepest anguish of soul." But God, who had thus made His voice heard in her soul, did not leave her to the misery of always looking into her own evil heart. He never does.
"God speaketh once, yea twice." Job 33:14.
In due time God spoke to her again; and this time He directed her eyes away from herself to Himself. The verse that brought peace to her heart is in Isa. 55:3. "Incline your ear, and come unto Me: hear, and your soul shall live." She did listen to His voice; she rested in His Word, and went on her way singing for gladness of heart. Her own vanity and sinfulness were no longer before her, but the love of the Savior who had borne them away, and whose love had drawn her to Himself.
"Wonderful love in the heart of my God,
Wonderful care, too, for me on the road;
Wonderful love in my Savior I see—
Accepting sin's judgment, He bare it for me.”
Dear one, is your heart in the enjoyment of this "wonderful love"? Or is "VANITY" still God's word for your course? I press upon you the fact that everything "under the sun" is vanity, and that by your devotion to the things of time you are shutting yourself out from His blessing.
There is hope for you—not in yourself, but in Himself. Oh, look off unto Him! Rest your soul in simple faith on His unfailing Word, and rejoice in His everlasting love.
"Hear, and your soul shall live." Isa. 55:3.

Two Blessings

Christ comes with a blessing in each hand: forgiveness in one, and holiness in the other; and never gives either to any who will not take both.

After Forty Years

"Yes, in a few months it will be forty years ago that I was brought to know the Lord; and I have told my children that if I were to die the only legacy I have to leave them is forty years of prayer. I have been praying for them that long.”
So said a dear old saint to a friend the other day. I thought how beautiful, how grand, how sublime! Think of it—forty long years of a mother's prayers, forty years of pleading with God for her children! How faithful, how diligent! Surely such prayers will be answered.
"Yes," she said, "several are already in the good old way, and I trust the Lord to bring in the others in His own time." Favored children to have such a mother who, though poor in this world's goods, is rich in faith, and rich in communion with God.
Oh, mother, are you thus pleading with God for your children? I see you shake your head and say, "I have never done that"; and, it may be, you never have really prayed for yourself yet. You have never felt your need or seen your condition, if unsaved.
What a dreadful thing, for a mother or a father of a family to be unsaved, and bringing up their children in all the follies and vanities of this wicked world—a whole family going on in the broad road that leadeth to destruction! If this should meet the eye of such, let me entreat you to consider your ways; for "there is a way that seemeth right in the sight of man; but the end thereof are the ways of death." What an end, I say, to all the toils and difficulties, the anxieties and testings of having a family! Death, eternal death!
Oh, how can you, how dare you, bring up your children without Christ? Mothers, fathers, I beseech you, flee from this broad, easy path. It leads to destruction. Look to the Lord Jesus Christ for your own salvation. He alone is able and wiping to save you from eternal death, and to give you eternal life through faith in Him.
Have you heard how earnestly Rahab, the harlot of Jericho, persuaded her father, mother, sisters, and brothers to come into her house as the only place of safety from the destruction that was about to come on the city? They all went in, and were all saved at the taking of the place! I see her earnestness, and I hear her cry: "Father, mother, sisters, brothers, come in, come in!”
Look, believe, and live. You answer me, "Where? What? How?" I say, "Look away unto Jesus. Believe on Him who was nailed to the cross—the One who died in your, the sinner's stead; life eternal will then be yours as a present possession; and in eternity glory with Him forever and ever.”
May the Lord then, my unsaved reader, give you to see your position and condition as before Him—a lost, guilty sinner. May He lead you to trust in and accept the Savior as yours; for it is written in John 3:36, "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.”

Faith

Faith is a divine plant that only grows out of the soil of a broken will.

For My Neighbor

"Folks, come again tomorrow night. Bring your rakes and leave your pitchforks at home." This was frequently the "benediction" of a farmer-evangelist whom we knew. Each of us needs to take to heart this homely admonition.
Some years ago a Christian doctor, who was on a visit to a patient, gave an elderly, well-to-do farmer a little gospel tract. He sought to press upon the old man the great importance of his getting right with God at once, in view of the endless eternity which he was fast approaching.
The old man received it and the doctor's remarks in a kindly and apparently interested manner. But the next day when he called to see his patient, he was met by the old farmer and was surprised by his excitement. With the air of a man who was conscious of having made a real discovery, the farmer said, "The very thing for my neighbor! That little book, sir, you gave me yesterday was the very thing for my neighbor; it must have been written on purpose for him.”
The poor man evidently thought his neighbor really needed salvation! He appeared not to have the faintest idea that he was equally in need of it. And truly this is the state of thousands of people in this day. Perhaps, my reader, you yourself are of the class who think they see great spiritual need in others. Being blinded by the god of this world, they are self-satisfied and have no sense of personal soul-need.
A preacher may say,."My sermon was the very thing for my congregation." His wife replies, "Yes, my dear, and for the one who preached it also." The listeners may say: "What a pity it is that our parson does not act up to what he preaches!" Wives may see a great need in their husbands and husbands in their wives, parents in their children and children in their parents. Masters and mistresses see great shortcomings in their servants, and servants are no less quick to see the failures of those who employ them. Nearly all see and deplore the sins of their neighbors. But few—oh, how few see their own guilty and lost condition!
Dear reader, face this all-important matter. Apply the infallible Word of God to your own heart. See yourself as God sees you, for unless you are born again you are still guilty before God—a lost sinner. The Word of God declares: "The soul that sinneth, it shall die." Ezek. 18:20.
"The wages of sin is death." Rom. 6:23.

My History

Is it Yours?
Chapter 1.
I was born in sin and shapen in iniquity. Psa. 51.5.
I desired not the knowledge of God's ways. Job 21:14.
But lived in the pleasures of sin. Heb. 11:25.
And had no fear of God before my eyes. Rom. 3:18.
Chapter 2.
I awakened from my sleep. Jonah 1:6.
Saw that I was guilty before God. Rom. 3:19.
Dreaded the wages of sin—Death. Rom. 6:23.
And that which was after death—the Judgment. Heb. 9:27.
Chapter 3.
I learned that all my righteousnesses were
but filthy rags in God's sight. Isa. 64:6.
Saw that I was without strength and
unable to save myself. Rom. 5:6.
Read that salvation was not of works. Eph. 2:8, 9.
But was pointed to the Savior which God had provided, and saw that He had suffered
for my sins on the cross. 1 Peter 3:18.
And that God was now offering me a complete
pardon through Him. Acts 13:38, 39.
Chapter 4.
I believed on the Lord Jesus Christ
and was saved. Acts 16:31.
Was justified and forgiven the very
moment I believed. Acts 13:38, 39.
Am therefore at peace with God
through our Lord Jesus Christ. Rom. 5:1.
I also have joy in God through Him. Rom. 5:11.
Chapter 5.
I am now waiting for God's Son
from heaven. 1 Thess. 1:10.
And know that I shall be
forever with the Lord. 1 Thess. 4:17.
In the Father's house. John 14:2.
To sing unto Him that loved me and
washed me from my sins in His own blood. Rev. 1:5.

Calmed by a Storm

God hath His way in the storm (Nah. 1:3). The forces in nature—wild, lawless, and ungovernable—fulfill His designs and are obedient to His will. He uses them either for judgment or for mercy.
How blessed it is, when life's storms assail, to hear the voice of the Man of Galilee-the voice of Him whose "Peace, be still" calmed the tempestuous sea (Mark 4:39), and, in answering His "Come unto Me," find in Him the promised rest. Matt. 11:28.
John Martin was one such soul. He had for several weeks been under deep conviction of sin, and had no peace day or night for fear of the righteous judgment of God.
One Lord's Day he was sitting as usual in the chapel listening anxiously to the faithful warnings as proclaimed from the pulpit. So engrossed was he that an approaching storm was unnoticed until it broke in fury over the village.
The roar of thunder made the little building shake. Flash after flash of lightning followed each other in quick succession. Legal terrors and his present thoughts of God filled him with dismay. What would become of him should he be smitten? Where would he spend eternity? Such was the state of his mind in the midst of the storm, that he was filled with guilty fear, terror, and despair.
While the storm was at its height, the chapel was in semi-darkness and the preacher's voice was drowned in the noisy crash of thunder. In a brief lull a sweet voice was heard singing a comforting old hymn, and soon the congregation joined in:
Ye trembling souls, dismiss your fears;
Be mercy all your theme;
Mercy which like a river flows
In one perpetual stream.

Fear not the powers of earth and hell;
God will these powers restrain;
His mighty arm their rage repel,
And make their efforts vain.

Fear not that He will e'er forsake,
Or leave His work undone;
He's faithful to His promises,
He's faithful to His Son.

Fear not the terrors of the grave,
Or death's tremendous sting;
He will from endless wrath preserve,
To endless glory bring.
In the singing of the last verse, God spoke peace to the soul of John Martin and gave, him assurance of salvation. He looked to the Savior and trusted in His blood for cleansing from all sin. (1 John 1:7.)
Thus to him God's way of mercy was in the storm. The storm led to the singing of the hymn, and the hymn led to the sinner's Savior.
God moves in a mysterious way,
His wonders to perform;
He plants His footsteps in the sea,
And rides upon the storm.

The Road of a Conversion

The horror of great darkness is the gateway into the most blessed unfolding of God's love.

God Is Love”

1 John 4:8
On a weathercock not far away someone has set in large letters, so that they can be read at quite a distance, the three words: "GOD IS LOVE.”
"A strange place," you say, "for such a message!" Yet they speak to ALL—yes, to all. To the infidel, the skeptic, the indifferent, the mere professor, the true believer, the sinner in his sins, the sinner whose sins have been washed away by the precious blood of Christ, these blessed words tell the same story— that "GOD IS LOVE.”
Whichever way the weathercock turns, those words remain the same. And for us, poor weathercocks that we often are, turned about by circumstances of every kind, the truth of His unchanging love remains, for "GOD IS LOVE.”
Inscribed upon the cross we see,
In shining letters, "GOD IS LOVE!"
The Lamb who died upon the tree
Has brought us mercy from above.

The Cross! It took our guilt away,
It holds the fainting spirit up;
It cheers with hope the gloomy day,
And sweetens every bitter cup.

Extract

In the cross of Christ is seen the fullest exhibition of divine love answered by the fullest exhibition of human hatred.
Not by works of righteousness
which we have done,
but according to His
mercy He saved
us.”
Titus 3:5

December

”Anno Domini”

"The year of our Lord,"—A.D. 1954. What a privilege to every one who now reads this page to have lived in what is called "the year of our Lord"! Ever since A.D. 1, the "grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father, and Jesus Christ our Lord" have been freely offered to all who receive the Savior.
But I question you, my reader: To what degree has 1954 been to you "the year of our Lord"? Have you in the year now nearly gone acknowledged Jesus Christ as Lord? Has He been given first place in your heart and life?
"If thou shalt confess with thy mouth Jesus as Lord (J.N.D. Trans.), and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." Rom. 10:9.
Present possession of eternal salvation is a wonderful blessing—truly "the gift of God." Has this been your portion in 1954? If not, it can be. In the little while remaining of this "year of our Lord" you can enter into the joy of knowing Him "whom to know is life eternal.”
To receive into your own heart the blessed Savior of sinners and to confess Him as Lord takes but, a moment. No novitiate of days, nor months, nor years is required. Yet once you have received Him, your own response of love will gladly yield to Him every moment of the time that He in His wisdom may give you.
A.D. 1954 is nearly gone. What have you done with it? Or—most important—what have you done with "Jesus, the Son of the living God"? Even the world, lost and on its rapid way to destruction, acknowledges His title to the fleeting years of time: Anno Domini, "the year of our Lord.”
Oh, my reader, let not these closing hours of 1954 leave you with "no hope, and without God in the world." TIME is fast slipping away, and ETERNITY is just ahead. Your only hope of everlasting joy is JESUS, the LORD.
"Today if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts." Heb. 3:7, 8.

From Here to There”

Years ago we pitched our gospel tent on the edge of a little village. Many came to hear the good news of God's salvation and some, through His mercy, received blessing.
Among others was an old man, Tom Norton. He had been a Marine, but was now retired on his pension and purposed to spend his last days in his native village. God was pleased to reach him at one of the earliest meetings. The sharp, barbed arrow of conviction entered his soul. Years of sin rose up before him with all their eternal consequences. He faced his past without God, and his heart was sorely troubled.
We visited him at his cottage several times and presented the blessed gospel to him. Still he had no peace. Often at the close of our interviews he would say: "But God is just, sir—God is just." He had yet to learn that, though God is just, He is also "the justifier of every one that believeth in Jesus.”
Weeks rolled by. Others were brought into blessing, but Tom Norton's trouble deepened. The last Lord's Day for the meetings came, and on Monday morning the tent was coming down. It was a solemn time, this last message. The subject was: "When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and He shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are." Luke 13:25. Tom Norton sat just inside the tent door with a look which seemed to say: "If I do not get salvation tonight, whenever shall I get it?”
At the close of the meeting we invited any who would to stay for prayer. To our surprise Tom Norton was the first to leave. He went home to have the after-meeting with God.
Walking through the village on Monday morning, I met him. As he drew near, his face told the story of this, after-meeting. Holding up his hand, with a look of peace and joy on his face, he said: "It is all right with me now.”
"Tell me," I said, "how it happened.”
Tom answered: "Last night I went home to my house to have it out with God. I fell before Him on the floor, and the sweat poured off me as I cried to Him, 'O God, have mercy on a poor old sinner like me!' While I wept because of the load of my sins, the blessed God let me see His dear Son Jesus on the cross, and there bearing all for a poor old sinner like me! Then I saw Him in the glory:—no sin upon Him there! Now it is all clear from there," pointing upward, "to here," smiting his breast. All clear from there to here. Tom Norton had peace.
How is it with you, dear one? Have you acknowledged the claims of God? Do you know the One who has met those claims? Look to Jesus on the cross, bearing the penalty for you; and then by faith behold Him in the glory of God. There "He liveth to make intercession" for you. Will you not say with Tom Norton: "All clear from there to here!”

Peace, Perfect Peace

Peace, perfect peace, in this dark world of sin?
The blood of Jesus whispers "peace" within.
Peace, perfect peace, by thronging duties pressed?
To do the will of Jesus: this is rest.
Peace, perfect peace, with loved ones far away?
In Jesus' keeping we are safe, and they.
Peace, perfect peace, with sorrows surging round?
On Jesus' bosom naught but calm is found.
"Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation." Heb. 9:28.

Beneath the Surface

In my unconverted days I was considered to be the life and soul of the company I kept. I could sing and dance and tell a good joke. When I was inducted into the armed services I became known as a good all-round entertainer.
Sharing a room with me in the camp was a young corporal, a Christian. That chap was a puzzle to me. He always looked bright and happy, was never ruffled, never downcast. He never joined us in our wild parties nor went in for worldly amusements. In his spare moments he often sat on the side of his cot, poring over the pages of his open Bible, undistracted by the yells and taunts of his Christ-rejecting comrades. Of these, to my shame, I was the leader.
But later on there came a change. One morning while the boys were cleaning up their kits, I was going on with my usual silly pranks and trying to amuse them with a popular song. Suddenly I spied my corporal friend walking leisurely about the room with his Bible under his arm, and I was uncomfortably aware that he had been watching me. Presently, when the room was somewhat quieter, he came over to where I was.
The earnest look he gave me I shall never forget. He said to me: "You seem to be a happy-go-lucky sort of a chap, and never seem to know a care. You seem to be all right on the surface." Pausing, he put his large hand on my shoulder, and as our eyes met he continued, "But how is it below the surface? Is it all right there? Is your soul all right?”
Without a moment's hesitation I replied, "No, it is all wrong.”
"I thought it was," he said, "and, thank God, you know it is.”
He opened the pages of his beloved Book and pointed me to the Savior of whom it testified—his Savior. The pretentious mask I had been wearing was torn away, and I was left exposed and naked in all my sins— a truly wretched man. When I saw myself as I was in God's sight, I could truly say, like Job: "I abhor myself." But when I beheld by faith the infinite grace and beauty of the Savior who died for me, my heart went out to Him in loving wonder and praise.
"I came to Jesus as I was,
Weary and worn and sad;
I found in Him a resting place,
And He has made me glad.”

“God My Savior”

Three short simple words, but full of power; words that teach us what God is, what we are, and what God would have us to be; words that humble man's pride, for they own that he cannot save himself; words that strengthen man's hope, for they speak of One able to save; words that reveal the faith of her who uttered them, and encourage us to believe and to rejoice in the Savior in whom Mary rejoiced!
These words could not have been uttered by a proud Pharisee, for such a one knows not that he needs a Savior. Still less could they have been the words of a careless Sadducee, for to him there is no spiritual world to hope for, nor to fear. They are the words of a lowly heart, uttered in a lowly, but a most blessed place, even at the footstool of mercy. There the sinner who feels his sin to be both a crime and a stain cries, "God be merciful to me a sinner!" At the same time he looks to Jesus on the cross, and cries, "My soul hath rejoiced in God my Savior!" The more the believing soul looks at that Savior the more does it rejoice.
When Mary uttered these words she rejoiced in a day which she saw by faith. He whom she looked for—the long-promised One—was now at hand. She had a special subject of joy; personal to herself, but if she had not believed in the Savior soon to be revealed, she would not have so rejoiced.
It was not only the honor to which she had been called; not only the thought that all generations should call her blessed, that so filled and elevated her mind; it was rather that thought which the whole assembly of Christ's redeemed ones shares with her, the wonderful thought, "God my Savior!" (Luke 1:47.)
"God" Himself; not man, performing the work.
"My Savior"; not others only, but me, even me, partaking in the benefits of that work.
"Savior"; this word means so much! It tells of such hopeless, helpless need; such utter depths of human misery; a whole world that cannot save itself. Savior! This is the name by which "Jesus" speaks to the hearts that need Him.
"God my Savior" reveals the mind of God in Christ toward man, the love of God, the plan and purpose of God, the glory of God.
"A Savior, which is Christ the Lord!"
Say, is He this to thee!
And doth thy heart acknowledge
Him, Thine all in all to be?

"A Savior." Hast thou seen thy sin
On Him, the sinless laid?
Trusted thy soul, thyself, to Him,
Who all the ransom paid?

"Christ," the Anointed, chosen One,
Hast thou in heart embraced?
And wouldst thou all things else forego,
His grace, His love to taste?

"The Lord." Oh, doth thine heart approve
The wondrous, blessed word?
Be every wish, and every power
Surrendered to thy Lord!

A Tent Door Blessing

For some time we had watched the young policeman on our "beat." He was so kind, so unfailing in his care and thoughtfulness of others, and so evidently happy that we desired to know the source of his steadfastness and joy. When at last we found courage to ask, he told us this simple story: "About six years ago, when I was twenty-five years old, I got married. Coming home unexpectedly a few evenings later I found my wife on her knees praying. I was so horrified and frightened that I slipped out again and thought to myself, 'Well, what shall I do? Oh, to think that I should have been such a fool as to marry a religious woman!' I did not know she was unconverted at that time.
"Hating all religion, and yet being afraid to say anything to her, I actually thought seriously of running away. However, while these thoughts ran through my mind other thoughts came in, and I began to think what an awful sinner I must be. I had never thought of praying and hitherto my life had been completely godless. Now I realized my sinfulness, and my conviction of sin grew deeper and deeper. I never mentioned this to my wife, but I got utterly miserable. I felt I was under condemnation and could not escape.
"I did not know where to turn for relief until at last I thought of one of my 'buddies' whom we all knew to be a 'good' man. Several times each night I met him on my beat and often tried to tell him my trouble; but courage failed me.
"At last one night, driven to desperation, I said to him: `Oh, Joe, what am I to do? I feel I'm such a sinner.'
"Immediately Joe was filled with delight, and grasping me by both hands he said: 'Why, Tom, I'd rather hear this than that they had made me Chief. I thought there was something up these last few days. I noticed you had given up your jokes and tricks with the other men at the station.'
"Then Joe told me of Jesus and His precious blood that cleanseth from all sin. Listening to him I got a measure of peace, but my soul was not really at rest. I was not fully assured of salvation. This feeling grew and grew until at last I considered myself as bad as before if not worse.
"During this time I was so intensely in earnest that I used to pray all the time on my beat. Indeed, I have knelt down at night on the pavement in pouring rain crying to God to do anything to me—let me break my arm, or my leg, or smash me anyhow—but to let me know for certain that I was saved.
"About this time a gospel tent was put up by some preachers near my beat. One night when I was passing, two of them saw me and asked if I would keep an eye on their tent. I agreed to do so, and often heard them preaching; but being on duty, I did not go in.
"One Sunday night I was especially miserable and as I neared the tent I thought I'd just go near the back entrance for a moment. As I came up I heard the preacher repeat the scripture: 'Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth My word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.' John 5:24.
"That was enough for me: now I knew I was saved. Immediately my whole soul was filled with light. Joy and peace came in believing, and have been my portion ever since.
"When I got home that night I told my wife that I was converted-I knew I was saved! Instead of rejoicing with me, she became very angry. Then it was that I learned that my wife was not saved. But the Lord was gracious, and it wasn't long before He saved her, too. Seeing me so happy and sure, she got anxious herself and could not rest until she had the same blessing.”
Weary soul out of Christ, have you heard His Word? 'Tis He Himself who calls: "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
"Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls." Matt. 11:28, 29.

Vanity of Vanities”

"Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity." Eccl. 1:2.
The incident of Cardinal Mazarin's farewell to his collection of art treasures is told in the memoirs of Louis Henri Comte de Brienne, who says: "I was walking some days later in the new apartments of his palace. I recognized the approach of the Cardinal (Mazarin) by the sound of his slippered feet which he dragged one after the other as a man enfeebled by a mortal malady. I concealed myself behind the tapestry and heard him say, 'Il faut quitter tout cela' (I must leave all that). He stopped at every step, for he was very feeble, and casting his eye on each object that attracted him, he sighed forth as from the bottom of his heart: 'I must leave all. What pains I have taken to acquire these things! Can I leave them without regret? I shall never see them again where I am about to go.'”
"Vanity of vanities; all is vanity.”
Lord Chesterfield, famous man of letters and leader of worldly fashion, a short time before his death wrote a letter in which he says: "When I reflect on all that I have seen, what I have heard, and what I have done, I can hardly persuade myself that all that frivolous hurry and bustle and pleasure of the world had any reality. I look on all that is past as one of the romantic dreams such as opium commonly gives, and I desire by no means to repeat the nauseous dose.”
"Vanity of vanities; all is vanity.”
Lord Byron, the brilliant poet, said: "I woke up one morning to find myself famous." Yet he too, in the last poem that came from his pen, joins in the strain of a misspent life:
"My days are in the yellow leaf,
The flowers, the fruits of love are gone;
The worm, the canker, and the grief
Are mine alone.
The fire that on my bosom preys
Is lone as some volcanic isle;
No torch is lighted at its blaze—
A funeral pile.”
"Vanity of vanities; all is vanity.”
Politician, philosopher, poet, and thousands more join in the "Preacher's" cry. Through Adam we all became heirs to a guilty conscience and a dissatisfied heart. Sad fruits of departure from God. But God proposes in the gospel to meet both: in the work of Christ for the conscience, and the love of Christ for the heart.
Hear from His own lips His words to a poor weary Samaritan woman at Sychar's well: "Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again; but 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." John 4:13, 14.
Again: "In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto Me, and drink. He that believeth on Me, as the Scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water." John 7:37, 38.
Eternal realities from God Himself! All that is under the sun is VANITY and must pass away. Only that which is in His keeping will endure throughout the endless ages.
Have you put your trust in the Man in the glory? He died for you; and above the sun He now lives for you. We beg you to commit the keeping of your precious soul to Him, as unto a faithful Creator and everlasting Savior. True happiness lies only in the knowledge of God. He alone can satisfy your longing heart; only the Savior's blood applied to your guilty conscience can cleanse and set you free. Then how blessed to know that nothing "can separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord"!
Herein is love, not that we
loved God, but that He
loved us, and sent His
Son to be the propitiation
for our sins.”
1 John 4:10.