Fragments Gathered Up

Table of Contents

1. 1 Corinthians 14
2. 1 Corinthians 14:16-17
3. 1 John 1
4. 1 John 2:6
5. 1 Timothy
6. 2 and 3 John
7. 2 Corinthians 12
8. 2 Corinthians 12:12
9. 2 Corinthians 3-6
10. 2 Corinthians 4:12
11. 2 Corinthians 5:14
12. 2 Corinthians 5:9
13. 2 Timothy 3:16-17
14. 24 Elders of Revelation 4
15. Abel's Sacrifice
16. Ability to Serve in the Church
17. Abraham and the World
18. Abraham the First Object of a Promise
19. Acts 7
20. Acts of Affection
21. Adam Created in Innocence
22. The Affliction of Christ
23. After Redemption
24. Age of the Messiah
25. Alienation in Nature and Standing
26. All the Saints Are Equally Free
27. All Will Give Account
28. Alms
29. The Altar and the Laver
30. Ananias and Jonah
31. And I Know Them
32. Antichrist
33. Atonement
34. The Authority of God's Word
35. Baptism
36. Baptism
37. Baptism
38. Baptism and the Lord's Supper
39. Bearing Twelve Fruits
40. Blessing
41. Blessing and Giving Thanks
42. Body a Living Sacrifice
43. Bought With a Price
44. Brazen Altar
45. Bringing in of a Better Hope
46. Cain and Abel; Utterances of the Cross; Dying Thou Shalt Die
47. Cast in and Cast Out
48. Certainty of What God Is
49. Changing Scripture to Suit Self
50. Chef or Head in the French New Testament
51. Children and Parents
52. Christ Alone
53. Christ Between Myself and Satan
54. Christ Dwelling in Us
55. Christ Has Judged Sin
56. Christ Not Law-Transgressing
57. Christ Our Object
58. Christ Revealed in the Fullness of His Person
59. Christ the Rule of Life
60. Christ the Test
61. Christ the Truth
62. The Christian and the Law
63. The Christian and the Law
64. Christian Attainment
65. Christian Forbearance
66. Christian Ministry
67. Christian Obedience
68. Christian Responsibility
69. Christianity
70. Christianity of the Busy Life
71. The Christian's Place in Ephesians and Colossians
72. Christ's Cry and God's Answer
73. Christ's Life and Death
74. Christ's Life Has Two Parts
75. Christ's Lordship
76. Christ's Love
77. The Church, Christ's Epistle
78. Church Obedience
79. The Church of God - Its Members and Unity: Review
80. Church Seen Only in Christ
81. Church's Part
82. Coming to the Father
83. Commandment
84. Communication From God
85. Communication From God
86. Comparison of Isa. 63 and 1 Cor. 2
87. Conscience
88. Conscience
89. Conscience Hardened
90. Creation
91. The Cross and the Crown
92. The Cross of Christ
93. The Cross
94. The Cross
95. A Daysman
96. Dead to Sin
97. Death for the Believer
98. Deborah
99. Dependent Being Elevated by Want
100. Deuteronomy 31:25 and Acts 20:17, 29
101. Devotion in Service
102. Didaktikos
103. Difference Between Blessing and Giving Thanks
104. Difference Between Love and Self
105. Differences in Philippians 3:9-10
106. A Different Gospel Which Is Not Another
107. Discernment of Spirits
108. Disproportion of Truth
109. Distinguishing Between Sins and Sorrows
110. Distrust of God
111. Divine Law
112. Dying for an Enemy
113. A Dying Paul
114. The Ear, Mind, and Soul
115. Ear to Hear
116. Early Testimonies (Fragment)
117. Eliezer and Laban
118. Esther
119. Evolution
120. The Exercise of Power
121. Exodus 6
122. Experimental Power of Romans 5-8
123. Extract: Christianity Characteristically Heavenly
124. Facts and Persons: Not a Myth
125. Faith
126. Faith and Failure
127. Faith and Righteousness of God
128. Faith of the Shunammite
129. Faith Shown in Love for God's Work
130. Fear and Love
131. Feeble Light and Strength of Will Go Together
132. Five Books of Psalms
133. The Flesh
134. The Flood
135. Follow Thou Me
136. The Force of Regeneration
137. Forgiveness and Positive Grace
138. Fragmentary Notes
139. Fragmentary Notes on 1 and 2 Timothy
140. French Revolution
141. Full of Faith, Grace, and Power
142. The Fulness of Him That Filleth All in All
143. Genesis 3
144. Gideon
145. Giving up the World and the World Giving Us up
146. God Becoming a Man
147. God Brought In
148. God in the Book of Job
149. God Incarnate
150. God Occupied With Us
151. God's Blessed Object for Faith
152. God's Bringing in a New Power
153. God's Enemies
154. God's Love and Christ's Love
155. God's Love in Trials
156. God's Nature: Holiness and Love
157. God's Promises
158. God's Sacrifice
159. God's Thoughts of the Blood of Christ, Not Ours
160. God's Ways Behind the Scenes
161. God's Word
162. The Gospel of the Glory of Christ
163. Government of God
164. Government of the World
165. Grace and Law
166. Grace in Ephesians
167. The Grand Blunder of Schleiermacher
168. The Great Question
169. Greek
170. Grieve Not the Holy Spirit of God
171. The Ground of Settled Peace
172. Guided by God's Eye
173. Harmonies of the Gospels
174. Having a Place in the Heart of the Lord
175. Having God As Our Father
176. Having Upon the Heart the Sufferings of the Church
177. He Is Love Itself
178. He That Hath Part in the First Resurrection
179. The Heart Occupied With the Lord
180. The Heavens Opened
181. Hebrews
182. Hebrews 1 and 2
183. Hebrews 10
184. Hebrews 3
185. Heretic
186. Hindrance to Obedience
187. History and Doctrine of the Bible
188. The Holy Ghost
189. The Holy Spirit
190. Hooker's Doctrine
191. Hooker's Doctrine
192. Hope an Inheritance
193. The Hope of Righteousness
194. The House and the Body
195. How We Should Act
196. Humbling
197. Idolatry
198. If and Not If
199. If They Only Knew
200. Improvement of Christendom or Calling of a Remnant?
201. In Christ and Christ in Me
202. In the Spirit
203. Inasmuch as Ye Did it Unto Me
204. Inspiration of Scripture
205. The Inspired History
206. Introduction of the Millennium
207. Is the Flesh Really Gone?
208. Isaiah
209. Isaiah 53:11
210. Israel of God - Gentile Believers
211. Jehovah
212. Jehovah Jealous and an Avenger
213. Jephthah
214. Jesus in the Days of His Flesh
215. Jesus Only
216. Job
217. Job 33 and 36
218. Joel 2
219. Joel 2:28-29
220. Joel 2:30
221. John 1:28
222. John 13
223. Joshua
224. Judgment Proving State
225. Judgment-Seat
226. Justification
227. Justification: Washed and Accepted
228. Latitudinarian Unity
229. Law and Man's Ruin
230. Law and Redemption
231. Law Not the Measure of God's Acting in Grace
232. Law Taken in Positive Action
233. Learning His Love in Sorrow
234. A Lesson From Saul
235. Let Brotherly Love Continue
236. Let Us Not Seek
237. Liberty, Joy, Blessing, and Clearness of the Truth
238. Life and Death
239. Lift up, Bear, Offer to
240. Light
241. Living on Grace
242. Living to Please Him
243. The Lord Condescending in Grace
244. Love and Purpose in God's Revelations
245. Love for God's Work
246. Love in 1 Corinthians 13
247. Love of Truth
248. Loving God's Children
249. Made Perfect in One
250. Man Departed Before God Drove Him Out
251. Man's Influence
252. Materialism
253. Matthew 11
254. Matthew 21-22
255. Matthew 5:17
256. Mediationship of Blessing
257. Millennium
258. Miracle
259. Miracles: Powers of the World to Come
260. Misuse of Order in 1 Corinthians 14:40
261. Mohammedanism
262. Morally Dead
263. Moses
264. "Must"
265. The Mystery Hidden in God
266. Names of God in the Psalms.
267. New Jerusalem
268. No Fear in Love
269. No Vail in Hebrews
270. Not Alive Under Sin or Law
271. Not Living to Myself
272. Not Self but Christ
273. Not Walking in Darkness
274. Nothing Good in Self
275. Numbers in Scripture
276. The Object of Faith
277. Occupation With Faults of Others a Bad Sign
278. Old Bottles
279. The Olive Tree
280. One Step at a Time With Christ
281. Our Sorrows and Christ
282. Our Strong Tower
283. Outside the Camp
284. Participles in 1 John
285. Patience: A Comment
286. Perfection
287. Perfectly in and Perfectly Out
288. Person Not Merely Doctrine
289. Peter's Conscience
290. Pictures From Abraham and Joseph
291. Pilgrims and Strangers
292. Power
293. The Power and Wisdom of God
294. Prayer and Worship in Unison With God's Purpose
295. Presence of God
296. Priesthood
297. Priesthood and Advocacy
298. Promise and Covenant With Abraham
299. Prophecy
300. Prophecy
301. Provision in the Wilderness
302. Provision of the Word
303. Psalm 102
304. Psalm 133
305. Psalm 40
306. Psalm 42
307. Psalm 68
308. Psalm 72
309. Psalm 77
310. The Psalms and Christ
311. Ransom for All
312. Read His Word
313. Receiving or Rejecting Him
314. Red Sea and Jordan
315. Redeemed and Called Out
316. Redemption
317. Rejecting the Word
318. Remembering Christ
319. Resurrection of Christ
320. Revelation 2-3
321. Revelation 3:8
322. Revelation 4-22
323. Revelation 8
324. Revelation 9
325. Revelation of God
326. Reward in the Kingdom
327. Righteous Government to Come
328. Righteousness Established in a Heavenly Way
329. Righteousness, Life, Salvation
330. The Righteousness of God
331. Romans
332. Romans 3:19
333. Romans 5:19
334. Romans 5:21
335. Romans 6
336. Romans 6:4-8
337. Romans and Ephesians Compared
338. Romans and Ephesians Compared
339. Room for Christ
340. Ruin and Glory
341. The Saint in Glory
342. Samuel
343. The Sanctuary of God
344. Scripture Inspired
345. Scripture Is the Expression of God's Mind
346. The Scriptures
347. The Second Tables of the Law
348. Security of Salvation
349. Seeing Christ Glorified
350. Seeing Christ Glorified (Duplicate)
351. Self-Exaltation Drawing Man to Antichrist
352. Self-Judgment
353. Self-Judgment
354. Self-Judgment by Grace
355. Self-Occupation Degrades a Saint
356. Separation of That Which Is of God
357. Service
358. Service for Christ and His Love to Me
359. Service of and Communion With Christ
360. Service of Christ
361. Sitting at His Feet
362. Son of God Reveals God Himself
363. The Spirit of Heaven and That of the World
364. The Spirit's Guiding in What We Say
365. Standards
366. Sufferings for Christ
367. Sufferings of Christ
368. Sure of Salvation
369. Take, Eat
370. The Testimony of the Church
371. That Christ Might Fill All Things
372. The Church: Power to Heal
373. The Closing Verses of Scripture
374. The Disciples
375. The Double Position of the Son of Man
376. The Double Power and Effect of Christ's Death
377. The French Revolution
378. The Historical Church
379. The Sealing of the Spirit
380. The Veil Not Rent Until Christ's Death
381. They Are Not of the World
382. They Are Not of the World
383. Thinking on Christ Only
384. This Last Scene
385. Three Things Necessary to Fellowship
386. Time for Action
387. Time of Labor, Not Rest
388. Time of the Gentiles
389. To Be Cast Down
390. To See God
391. Trusting God to Foil Satan
392. Truth and Error
393. Truth as to the Spirit
394. Two Classes in Psalms
395. Typical Meaning of the Tabernacle Metals
396. Understanding O. T. Scriptures
397. Union With Christ
398. Unity
399. Unity and Christ
400. Unity of Christians
401. The Unity of Christ's Body
402. The Veil Rent
403. Walking in the Light
404. Walking With God
405. Walking Worthily
406. We Beheld His Glory
407. We Know
408. What Christ Is
409. What God Is to Us
410. What Is the Church?
411. What Proves There Is a God
412. What the Grace of God Does
413. When a Pause Is Needed
414. The Whole Truth
415. Why Should We Think We Possess a Perfect Mind?
416. Will, and Conscience, God's Way
417. "Wilt Thou Be Made Whole?"
418. Without Christ We Have Nothing
419. Worldly Religions
420. The World's History in Scripture
421. Writings of Paul and of John
422. Zeal

1 Corinthians 14

1 Cor. 14 Power is subject to intelligence. So it is in God. His wisdom necessarily in action precedes His power and guides it. Just so the wisdom and moral guidance of the Spirit go before power and guide its use. It is for profit; and the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. This last is a very interesting point. As a divine work it could not be otherwise. For God must be first wise.

1 Corinthians 14:16-17

“Else when thou shalt ‘bless’ with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned say Amen at thy ‘giving of thanks,’ seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest? For thou verily ‘givest thanks’ well, but the other is not edified” (1 Cor. 14:16, 17).

1 John 1

1 John 1 “That which was from the beginning,” denotes that the life, though in its source eternal, was looked at as in man, a new and absolutely original thing. This is very important. As to its nature, the life, which is our life [as Christians], is an entirely new original thing as regards man; for it was with the Father from all eternity. But it began in itself in Jesus as shown down here. It is no modification of the first Adam.

1 John 2:6

“He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk even as he walked.” The italicized pronoun is in the original Greek a word of vivid force. The English reader naturally is unaware of any special emphasis. But it is there, and that in a marked degree. Several times indeed John uses it in this Epistle in reference to our Lord. And it has been beautifully observed by the late Archbishop Alexander that the thought of his Lord, and of the perfect life which he himself had portrayed in the Fourth Gospel, the scroll of which, may be, was beside him as he wrote, half hushes the apostle’s voice, and so instead of mentioning the revered name, which all who loved it would easily supply, he consequently merely says “that One” (ἐκεῖνος), that great, that adorable One. This comment is as just and well-warranted as it is exquisitely beautiful.
“He that says he abides in him.” Have we not here in brief the concentrated doctrine of John 15:1-7? And then the tense in which the apostle refers to the Savior’s walk sums it all up, as it were. It is the aorist (περιεπάτησε), and presents that spotless life as a perfect whole. Contrariwise, and most appropriately, in the admonition to the professor he enforces the necessity of ever walking as He walked. In short it is the present infinitive, περιπατεῖν.
What endless beauties, “lights and perfections” (may one not say?) are to be found by the reverent student of the holy word!
R. B.

1 Timothy

In 1 Timothy there is nothing of privileged relationship. The Father is not spoken of, nor children, nor the Bride, the Lamb’s wife. It is God in His own nature and being, a Savior, but God as such in nature. Hence also law and Judaism are left behind, useful in their place; but the truth is God with man by a Mediator between God and men. The other point is by the by—the public order of the Church in the world, guarding against false doctrines. The Church is the witness of truth in the world, the display of that truth having been in Christ.

2 and 3 John

The two briefer epistles (2 and 3) of John show truth as to Christ’s person to be the test of true love, and to be held fast when antichrists come in. Along with this, we see the free ministration of truth, which those who assume clerical authority oppose

2 Corinthians 12

Flesh is seen in three distinct positions: first, when the man is in the third heaven and there has no consciousness of it at all; secondly, in the activity of its own will at the end of the chapter when it is sin; and, thirdly, in conflict but disallowed. Here the man is not unconscious of it, but it is known and conscious weakness, but the soul having Christ’s power with it, and this relied on by faith. As respects the sphere it acts and works in, it is a weakness, but thus a testimony to another power which does its own work in this sphere—the power of Christ. The saint is obliged to feel it as weakness because of the tendency to self-confidence and forgetfulness of dependence; and that the Lord alone can do the Lord’s work whatever instruments he uses.

2 Corinthians 12:12

2 Cor. 7:12. Is it not instructive to read that, though “signs and wonders and mighty deeds” are undoubtedly “signs of an apostle,” yet a very different thing, a most passive virtue, takes precedence of them all? In the apostle “patience” was the supreme or at least first-named sign. The inference is obvious. Patience should, a fortiori, characterize those who are not apostles. R. B.

2 Corinthians 3-6

What a ministry Paul speaks of in 2 Cor. 3-6! Thoroughly of God, yet it passed through man’s heart to reach man’s heart, which indeed is of the essence of Christianity. Not surely that it is by man’s strength, but God’s made good in man’s weakness.

2 Corinthians 4:12

2 Cor. 4:12. Death wrought in Paul in such a sort that the flesh did not stir. He was so truly dead that Christ only lived in him. That left the life of Jesus on Paul’s part to act with regard to the Corinthians.

2 Corinthians 5:14

To apply 2 Cor. 5:14 to death to sin, instead of death by it, is more wrong than I thought, because panton is absolute. “He died for all,” and of pantes applies necessarily to the same all.

2 Corinthians 5:9

Paul labored to please Christ, whatever might be the class in which he would be found at the coming of the Lord, whether among those who have fallen asleep before, or among those who will be still remaining, living on earth, when he comes.

2 Timothy 3:16-17

“Every scripture is God-inspired, and profitable for teaching, for conviction, for correction, for instruction that is in righteousness; that the man of God may be complete, furnished thoroughly unto every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16, 17).

24 Elders of Revelation 4

If the 24 elders of Rev. 4 represent, as I doubt not, all that are Christ’s at His coming for His own, how comforting then to see ourselves safely garnered in heaven before any of the judgments (that follow in the book) are poured on the earth.

Abel's Sacrifice

Abel’s sacrifice was rather an offering to God than redemption. Therewith he could come and be received by faith, and so it is used in Hebrews. It was Abel’s offering, not God’s redemption.

Ability to Serve in the Church

After all, the more one gets on in the world, the less the ability to serve in the church. If the wheel is caught in a rut, the man who has on his working clothes is ready enough to put his shoulder to it, but the gentleman, with his nice clothing on, cannot stoop to that.

Abraham and the World

Abraham gives up the world in liberty, conquers it in power, and refuses it that he may have everything from God. He is blessed of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth.

Abraham the First Object of a Promise

There was no promise before Abraham to any person as an object and depositary of it. There was an object of faith in the judgment of the serpent as to the promised seed; but there was no person an object of promise.

Acts 7

Acts 7—I had not sufficiently observed the completeness of the whole view given at the close of the discourse. First, on the testimony of the prophets, the whole Jewish foundation is set aside as a dwellingplace of God, as being mere creation. Next, as to the moral position of the Jews, they had not kept the law; they have betrayed and murdered the Just One; and they were, as ever, resisting the Holy Ghost. Thus their whole condition was brought out. Then we have the contrast: a man full of the Holy Ghost, heaven opened, the man Jesus seen in glory, the cross, and likeness to Jesus, the spirit being received up.

Acts of Affection

She who anointed the Lord’s feet in Simon’s house showed more real love and more intelligence in divine truth than they who brought their hundred pounds’ weight of sweet spices to His vacant tomb. The homage of their love was mistimed then, for He was not there, but risen; and no corruption was there to need the masking odors of rich perfume. “Storied urn and animated bust” will be of nothing worth to our beloved and revered who are put to sleep by Jesus, and await His coming to change the body of our humiliation into conformity with the body of His glory. But little acts of affection done for them to-day, while they are still with us, are really valuable, since they may perchance cheer their hearts in discouraging times with gentle reminders of loving sympathy and bright hope. EMETH.

Adam Created in Innocence

It is often said that Adam was created in righteousness and holiness. This is all erroneous. He was created in innocence. The new man is created in righteousness and true holiness—Christ, not Adam. (Eph. 4:24.)

The Affliction of Christ

The affliction of Christ was infinitely deep; but His perfect communion with His Father caused all the anguish, that in others broke out into complaints, to be in secret between Him and His Father. It is very rarely expressed in the Gospels: He is entirely for others in grace.

After Redemption

Now that redemption is accomplished, the cleansing power of Christ’s precious blood is made known which renders the believer fit for the light of God’s presence into which he is brought with a purged conscience. He is therefore responsible to walk according to the light in which God is.

Age of the Messiah

There is the age of the law, and the age to come, that is, the age of the Messiah. The Jews believed there would be much more grace in the last, and in a sense they were right. (At present, all is in suspense as to the ages: we are heavenly.) Those who blasphemed against the Spirit, even under the Messiah, should not be pardoned. They owned that Christ cast out demons; they owned the acts of power; thus they sinned with deliberate knowledge. If they had said that it was imposture, there might have been pardon for them.

Alienation in Nature and Standing

Besides our actual sins, there are two points of our state connected with the fall in Adam: our alienation from God in nature and will; and our alienation from God in condition, place, or standing. Both must be corrected. The former is by having Christ for our life, being born again; but this does not in itself take us out of law. The new nature feels the evil of the old, not only what we have done but what we are. It is not merely we cannot say we have not sinned, but we cannot say we have no sin. I know that in me, that is in my flesh, dwelleth no good thing. The law is a mere means of discovering this. The remedy is not in dealing with it at all; but my place is altered in Christ. Not only I have a new nature, but I have died, as in the old, with Him. I am not in the flesh at all; I am in Christ who has died and risen again. I have a new nature—this must be; but Christ having died and risen again and I being in Him, I have a new place too. This is what Rom. 7; 8 teach us. Baptism is not the sign of life-giving but of change of place. We arise out of death, but death is the main point here. The “for” of verse 2 is not inferential. Verse 1 is the result of what goes before and stands by itself; verse 2 begins an explanation of the law of the whole matter in life—the change in nature, as previously the change of place or condition—deliverance, not new life. We must not confound παλιγγενεσία and ἀναγεννάω. Παλιγγ is a change of state, as Matt. 19 and used for a recovery of wealth when fortune has been lost. Ἀναγεννάω means to be born again, as with βλέπω, καινίξω. It has the sense of “up” often; but “again” or “back,” the beginning of something new with the sense of the contrary of what it was before. Of ἀναλύω, ὰωακἁμπτω, ἀνακαλύπτω. The other sense is pretty much our use of “up.” See 1 Peter 1:3, 23; Titus 3:5.

All the Saints Are Equally Free

The Editor Agrees
The editor agrees with G. H. L. that the believing gentile can now claim in principle all the benefits of Christ’s redemption, though he may not have to be delivered from the law like the Jew, who was in bondage to it. All the saints are equally free. The death of Christ puts all on the same ground, both as to sin and as to grace

All Will Give Account

All will give account of themselves to God—the saints when caught up to be with the Lord, and the wicked at the end of the millennium. The saints will give account of themselves in glory. “We are made manifest to God,” not “shall be.” The Christian stands in the presence of the glory now. We want this light acting on the conscience; but we must have perfect confidence in God, for there can be no happy play of the affections if there is not.


Luke 12:32-34. Act the part of kings, as persons called to and having a higher inheritance; and give alms. And there is a reason—it is a separating principle: let your treasure be there, your heart will be there also; you will be formed for God. It is not, observe, the value of the gifts meritoriously, but the effect internally. Such is the suitable position of believers in the kingdom: hereunto are they called.

The Altar and the Laver

The altar comes before the laver in what is presented to man, nor can the laver be without the altar.

Ananias and Jonah

Ananias, in Acts 9, was something of a Jonah, unprepared for full grace. And so shall we be, if we do not come to God ourselves as “the chief of sinners,” taking up all sin as in our own persons.

And I Know Them

“AND I know them” says the Savior.... He knows them, all their thoughts and feelings, their words and ways, their dangers and difficulties, their past, present, and future. He knows themselves in short, perfectly, and in perfect love. How infinite the favor and the blessing! What a resource and joy!


It is no real difficulty, if the second beast be Antichrist, how his general influence in deceiving those who had the mark of the beast should stand with it. It would suit their idea of and pride in their Messiah, carnally deluded as the Jews are. He who is their king extends his influence over the Gentiles. This would do better than a little flock and their despised Savior.


In Rom. 5:11 and Heb. 2:17, the two words “atonement” and “reconciliation” should change places. We (believers) receive the reconciliation which is of “persons” as here (2 Cor. 5:20; Col. 1:21), or of “things” by and by (Col. 1:20).
Atonement or propitiation is for sin and sins, and made to God.

The Authority of God's Word

People often confound the effect produced on man, the effect which makes him own the truth and the authority of the Word, with a judgment passed by man upon this Word, as upon a matter submitted to him. Never could the Word be thus presented as subject to human judgment; it would be to deny its own nature; it would be to say that it is not God who speaks. Could God say that He is not God? If this cannot be, no more could He speak and admit that His Word has not its own authority.


Paul alone puts baptism, as far as I am aware, on the ground of death and resurrection with Christ. Thus it becomes the means of doctrinally bringing the Christian on to the point, where, on the new ground and in a new position, he is united to Christ as Head.
In Romans he only carries it out to the individual position; but in Colossians he uses it not as union of course, but as that which, by taking out of flesh into what is beyond it, is the inseparable introduction into holding the Head. It is only life, but life hid with Christ in God. But He introduces holding the Head as the necessary and inseparable consequence: only the Holy Ghost is not brought out in this epistle. The connection is in chap. 1:18—not the same but connected so immediately in Christ. Hence it glimmers, though not unfolded, as in chap. 1:24, 25; 2:19.


BAPTISM. The paper from Heckmondwike is merely a reproduction of the Campbellite heresy, which confounds water-baptism (important in its place) with the baptism of the spirit, and even with justification by faith. Of course the writer overlooks the difference between an institution which applies according to the Lord’s intention initiatorily with a moral point which is always binding. But the paper is too unintelligent and excitable in its extravagant vehemence to injure any but the writer or such as are already far astray. Not even the simplest will be misled, if they look to the Lord and bow to His word. Exaggeration defeats itself; especially when it makes a form vital, to the ruin of all who so err.


Baptism clearly signifies death; and it is not the baptizing but the coming out of the water which can be applied to resurrection [as in Col. 2:12]. The giving of life is in no way the sense of baptism even as a figure, but leaving the life of Adam by death (the death of Christ), and entrance through that gate into a wholly new place and position.

Baptism and the Lord's Supper

Baptism and the Lord’s Supper (1 Cor. 10) are for the wilderness. The first introduces into the wilderness; but it is Christ’s death, not mine only. I thereon reckon myself dead as a consequence, planted in baptism in the likeness of His death. But in Romans we have not resurrection with Him; and even where we have, as I think we must say in Col. 2, no ascension, no Canaan.
As the one brings into, the other sustains in, the wilderness. So we show forth Christ’s death till He come. I am on the earth, but in the consciousness of being a member of the one body, which implies union with Christ; but it is on earth I celebrate it, not in heaven. I look at the humiliation as over with Him, but remember Him in it. Our service in it is simply owning the preciousness of His death till He comes. Our state is in resurrection; but we are occupied and celebrate His having been once down here, and show forth His death. The question is, Where are we when we celebrate it? In the wilderness. J.N.D.

Bearing Twelve Fruits

Revelation 22:2
Although the precise force of the original be doubtful, i.e., whether we should interpret the words that literally signify “bearing twelve fruits,” as meaning merely fresh fruits, or, as we would Fain take it, if not too precarious a conclusion, twelve manner of fruits, as the Authorized Version gives it, in either case a wonderful richness of Divine blessing is promised for the millennial day. Undoubtedly there will be perennial freshness, but it would be only in keeping with what we know, each in our measure, of God’s lavish largess, may we say, to His children, if the words (ποιοῦνκαρποὺς δώδεκα) point to a full circle, as it were—a most opulent variety in the spiritual food that will be administered on the renovated earth. And, if so, or, rather, since it is so, how much greater will be the fullness of fruition in the heavenly scene Truly, as one has said, it will be, “Taste after taste, upheld with kindlier change.” But indeed the very fact of the almost bewildering variety of flower and fruit, with which the goodness of Providence has blest even this transitory scene of human life, points to at least as great bounty for the millennium, and, as we have said, how much more for the consummation of that which is heavenly. R.B.


God can bless in a direct manner with the light of His grace, when the soul is brought into its true place, to what it really is in His sight. Then, whatever its state may be, He can bless it in respect of that state, with increased light and grace. If I have got far from Him and careless in walk, when I have the consciousness how far I am, He can fully and directly bless. But the soul must be brought into the recognition of its state, or there would be no real blessing. I should not see God in unison with it. For its sensible did not answer to its real in God’s sight.

Blessing and Giving Thanks

1 Cor. 14:16 is a positive proof of what is indeed very clear in other passages—that “blessing” means giving thanks. The two words are used for the same act elsewhere. (comp. Matt. 14; 15, Luke 9, John 6) Here they are positively identified.

Body a Living Sacrifice

You will never find a Christian in a healthy state, who does not keep his body a living sacrifice for God.

Bought With a Price

I am going to be like Christ in glory; then I must be as like him now as ever I can be. Of course we shall all fail, but we are to have our hearts full of it
Remember this, that the place you are in is that of an epistle of Christ. We are set for this, that the life of Christ should be manifested in us. Christ has settled the question with God: He appears in the presence of God for us, and we are in the presence of the world for Him. “In that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.” If I know He is in me, lam to manifest the life of Christ in everything. If He has loved me with unutterable love which passes knowledge, I feel bound in heart to Him; my business is to glorify Him in everything I do. “Bought with a price” —that is settled: if bought, I am His. But, betrayed friends, I press upon you that earnestness of heart which cleaves to Him, especially in these last evil days, when we wait for the Son from heaven. Oh! if Christians were more thoroughly Christians, the world would understand what it was all about. There is a great deal of profession and talk; and the activity of the Spirit of God—thank God—there is; but do you think if a heathen came here to learn what Christianity meant, he would find it out?
The Lord give you to have such a sense of the love of Christ, that, as bought with a price, the only object of your souls may be to live by Christ and to live for Christ; and, for those who. do not know Him, that they may learn how He came down in love to seek us, and, because righteousness could not pass over sin, died to put it away.

Brazen Altar

The brazen altar is the measure of man’s responsibility; but saving has nothing to do with responsibility. God saves us for Himself, and brings us to Himself.

Bringing in of a Better Hope

To allege the impossibility that a holy, just, good, and perfect God can give any rule but one, is contrary to the plain facts and declarations of scripture. God did give another, which he has disannulled, because it made nothing perfect; and there is the bringing in of a better hope, by the which we draw nigh to God

Cain and Abel; Utterances of the Cross; Dying Thou Shalt Die

Abel’s sacrifice was not a sin-offering. Neither Cain nor Abel came before God with the conscience oppressed by a known transgression. It is the state of each of them that is in view, the state of man before God: the one owning himself driven justly out from His presence because of evil, yet drawing near to Him according to His grace; the other, the natural man insensible to sin. In God’s answer to Cain (Gen. 4:7), the subject is positive transgression; and this confirms the thought that in the passage an offering for sin is meant, and not sin itself simply.
The cross of Christ said, Man will not have God, even when He comes in grace. But it said also, God in infinite grace spared not His own Son, in order to reconcile man to Himself (2 Cor. 5:17-19).
WHAT a horrible thing, if Adam had been able to eat of the tree of life, and to fill the world with immortal sinners, having no more fear of death than of God! But He allowed it not.

Cast in and Cast Out

“They cast Him out.” Cast out? yes; but where to? into the bosom of Jesus. Oh! That is cast in! Never mind the Pharisees.

Certainty of What God Is

Revelation does not tell me that I have a conscience and aspirations; it gives me the answer to them, and that is what I want—not to be told I have got such: I do not want a book for that. To answer this need of my soul, I want a certainty of what God is. I know what He is by His revelation of Himself in Christ.

Changing Scripture to Suit Self

It is a deadly principle running through all rationalists that they make men’s present habit of thinking the measure of the fitness of God’s word; and thus gradually lead to the belief that it was the product of the age and country it was written in. If I change scripture for what suits the west and the nineteenth century, I shall soon change it for what suits myself; and we might as well not have it at all.

Chef or Head in the French New Testament

O. P. on “Chef” in the French N. T
A LETTER from O. P. gives ample corroboration from the old standard French Dictionary of the Academy that those who fancy some other sense, and not “head,” do not know what they write about. No other sense suits the matter in question. There are other dictionaries of later date and of great repute for research; but nothing to shake that sense. After all, as the Greek is the original, this only is divinely authoritative, and “head” is the, only possible sense, as required also by the correlation with body. But when men drift from truth once believed and confessed, they flounder into new follies as higher truths. So did the old Gnostics.

Children and Parents

If a man were to teach or incite the children of a family to do anything he knew was displeasing to the parent, how could he say he loved the children for the father’s sake?

Christ Alone

This position of Christ is very striking as showing the absolute intrinsic perfectness of His love and obedience. There is an end of man. All that was in man was hatred to God in goodness; so that he has no sustainment from man—only evil. He turns to God, and there He is forsaken. Broken, and more than broken, pressed up to death, from man He turns to God and finds forsaking. He was left alone, repelled by man and in a certain sense by God when He turned to Him—was alone, accomplished all in His own love and obedience, and perfected the work, so that revelation could say, “Therefore doth my Father love me.”

Christ Between Myself and Satan

If I have got Christ between myself and Satan, I am strong against the enemy. But if Satan gets in between Christ and myself, then it becomes a question of my own strength, and I find that I am weakness itself. If any one, were it a poor weak woman, is in a house attacked by thieves, but a house well shut up and protected, she is without fear; but if once the thieves enter, it is a question of her strength, which must go for nothing

Christ Dwelling in Us

Christ dwelling in us—that is light, life, fragrance, holiness. Many seek Christ within before finding Christ without, and so cannot attain to peace; many, after finding Christ without, do not seek diligently to have Christ within. To have both Christ without and Christ within is peace and purity.

Christ Has Judged Sin

Christ has judged sin in its very principle. In baptism a man acknowledges that all he is is subject to the judgment of God. It is not merely that he has now new motives, but God has given him a divine conviction of the utter ruin of all he is. And he knows another that the world does not know, as his life. He has one who is risen from the dead. Thus it is not with him a mere struggle against sin. Christ not only blots out the past, but he is given to me of God to live upon for the present. In trials and difficulties, God would keep Christ before me. Thus I am brought through, but it is not by bracing myself as if I could meet the emergency. There would not thus be the quiet faith and sense of nothingness, so wholesome to me and glorifying to him. His grace is sufficient for me. In Christ dead and risen is power against sin. Christ is not merely a friend to help me, nor a motive of love to act on me. In Him I have much more than this. I am entitled as a Christian now to treat myself as dead to sin before God. If I merely struggle against sin, I am treating myself as a living person; for who, save a living person, can struggle? If Christ is before me, the victory is mine.

Christ Not Law-Transgressing

It has been wrongly said that, if Christ’s whole life had not been law-fulfilling, it must have been law-transgressing. This is simply that He was incapable of going beyond that to which all as creatures are subject. If there is no alternative but law-keeping and law-transgressing, there could have been no act of sovereign goodness and love to sinners; for this is neither. He could not go beyond creature obligations! Such is the theology and reasoning opposed to us.

Christ Our Object

If our souls go on with God, sweet as is the assurance that we, washed in the blood of Christ, belong to God, yet the uppermost thought will in the long run be Himself. We shall come back to His person. We shall in our praises weave with it what He has done, suffered, and won for us; but the first of all thoughts in our souls is, the first of all thoughts in heaven is, not what we have gained, however true, but what He has been for us and what He is to us, yea what He is in Himself.

Christ Revealed in the Fullness of His Person

There is a contrast between Christ, object of promise and prophecy, and Christ revealed in the fullness of His person as beginning and foundation (having accomplished His work) of the new creation, its head, filling all things, having re-established the relationship between God and them, a relationship ruined by sin; and at the same time beginning, foundation, and head of the Church, which He reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, having united it, quickened in Himself, by the Holy Ghost to Himself as His body. These two things constitute the mystery in its whole extent.

Christ the Rule of Life

Law is a principle on which we cannot live to God, any more than we can be justified thereby. No doubt we cannot be justified by works of law; but there is much more than that. It condemns us positively if we are under it. It works wrath. It cannot give life; but that is not all. It is a ministration of death—is found to be under death—is the strength of sin.
What is the rule of life? Christ, I answer; Christ is our life, rule, pattern, example, and everything; the Spirit, our living quickener and power to follow Him; the Word of God, that in which we find Him revealed, and His mind unfolded in detail; but Christ and the Spirit, in contrast with law. (2 Cor. 3; Gal. 2:20; 5:16.)

Christ the Test

“Christ personally—the written word as the standard of truth—is the test for everything that can be said or written now, in the hands of all that fear the Lord, whether it be those that minister or those that are ministered to.”

Christ the Truth

Christ on earth was the truth, as he is always. Truth exists before the church of God. His word is truth, and faith in the truth gathers the church by the Holy Ghost. But the church maintains the truth; and when the church is gone, men will fall into a strong delusion. That which is not the pillar and support of the truth is not the church as God understands it.

The Christian and the Law

The man who puts a Christian under law destroys the authority of the law, or puts the Christian under the curse; for in many things we offend all. He fancies he establishes law, but destroys its authority. He only establishes the full, immutable authority of law, who declares that the Christian is under grace, and therefore cannot be cursed by its just and holy curse

The Christian and the Law

If law applies to the Christian, he is under the curse; for it brings a curse on every one who sins. Do I enfeeble its authority? I maintain it and establish it in the fullest way. I say, Have you to say to the law? Then you are under a curse: no escaping, no exemption. Its authority and claims were to be maintained; its righteous exactions made good. Have you failed? Yes, you have; you are under the curse. No, you say; but I am a Christian; the law is still binding upon me, but I am not under a curse. Has not the law pronounced a curse on one who fails? Yes. Yet you are under it; you have failed, and are not cursed after all! Its authority is not maintained, for you are under it: it has cursed y on and you are not cursed. If you had said, I was under it and failed, and Christ died and bore the curse; and now, as redeemed, I am on another footing, and not under law but under grace, its authority is maintained. But if you are put back under law, after Christ has died and risen again and you are in Christ, and you fail and are under no curse, its authority is destroyed; for it pronounces a curse, and you are not cursed at all.
The law is the absolutely perfect expression of what the creature ought to be, but because it is, it is not the transcript of the divine character.
What does deliver from sin and law? It is death, and then newness of life in resurrection. We are in Christ, not in Adam.
The man who refrained from killing, simply because it was forbidden in the law, is no Christian at all.

Christian Attainment

The Christian has no goal of attainment but Christ in glory. If faithful, he does that one thing—runs to win Christ, and by any means to attain to the first resurrection. This produces the effect, so far as it operates, of walking like Christ down here. The believer’s conversation (his living association) is in heaven; he looks for Christ to change his body and conform it to His glorious body. To the end therefore, we say with Paul, I count not myself to have attained; but we have no other measure of attainment. And he who best knows Christ knows best how far he is from having attained.

Christian Forbearance

Christian forbearance, we must remember, is never forbearance with evil, and faithful testimony against it is always blessed. Priestly discernment is needed; and the non-allowance of evil far from being inconsistent with love, is rather its genuine expression.

Christian Ministry

What can be more valuable in its place, and for God’s ends by it, than Christian ministry? It embraces rule as well as teaching, pastorship as well as preaching. There are those that can teach who have not the power of ruling; as, again, others who rule well, having great moral weight, who could not teach. Some again have the gift of preaching who themselves need teaching, and are not at all fit to lead on, clear, and establish the church of God. Nor does a gift for ministry in itself carry moral weight for rule. Thus scripture teaches, and so we see in the facts of every day.
Christian ministry was founded by the Lord who died for us; but the spring flowed when He went up to heaven. If He gave gifts to men, it was after He ascended on high (Ephesians 4:8-11).
W. K.

Christian Obedience

Where there is spiritually, the heart finds a command in the barest hint and the most remote example of the Word of God; where there is not, all the commands in both Testaments would be in vain to form Christian obedience. Where there is difficulty in the way, and our own will is at work, we often make objections, and cannot say we see things! Christ had the will of God before Him up to death.

Christian Responsibility

Christian responsibility is founded on this—that God has delivered our souls, and that he means to have us with himself in heaven. Our conduct never flows from a pure and right spring, where it does not flow from the certainty of the favor of God, that has made us His own forever. The mere thought of duty, however just, will not stand the day of trial.


Christianity, while recognizing the reign of law in its own sphere, rests specifically on that which is outside and above it—the resurrection. It was morally impossible that Christ could be left under the power of death; he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God knows that He could not be holden of it. When “morally” is said, this takes it out of the category of natural sequences, God being what He is, and Christ what He was.

Christianity of the Busy Life

The Christianity of the closet, and the Christianity of busy life, are not, as is often fancied, conflicting things. The man who has fellowship with Jesus in his solitude knows how to carry the savor of the fellowship even into the most common affairs. There is need of prayer in this matter. For though we be convinced that there is but one thing needful, we are easily led away, like Martha, to busy and trouble ourselves about “many things.” many things we must needs do and care about, while we are in the flesh; but the work to which Christ calls us is to do and care about these things in such a spirit as to make them part and parcel of our great work—the work of keeping close to Jesus, and of following him whithersoever he goeth. If only willing to leave all and follow Christ, he would make the cross not heavy to be borne but a delight, more pleasant than to the miser is his load of gold, or to the earthly monarch are his insignia of power. “My yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

The Christian's Place in Ephesians and Colossians

In Eph. 1:6 our place is full grace in Christ; in Col. 1:13 it is present actual deliverance from the power of darkness and translation into the kingdom of the Son of His love. In the former all is seen from the point of view of God’s eternal counsels before evil existed, the good which He proposed in Himself, though redemption was necessary when evil had come up, and the glory of God Himself, and the basis of our glory in that accomplishment of them, were made good in it. In the Epistle to the Colossians man in evil is the object of grace.

Christ's Cry and God's Answer

The cry of Christ is of wonderful power and character (2 Cor. 6:2). His cry was the perfect expression of His nature, of a divine apprehension of evil, death, and judgment. It was the expression in need of all that God was against sin, when this came before His soul, so that He had the consciousness of that need according to the perfection of His judgment of evil, His sense of need as man under it, and thus in the perfect claim of what He was in person and in glorifying God in His work.
Hence God’s answer must be according to all this, according to the perfection of the claim in the person of Christ. And hence salvation, our salvation is just this—the necessity of God’s answering Christ according to the claim Christ had, and the cry made to Him. He was raised from the dead by the glory of His Father. What a wonderful salvation! And how it places us in the intimacy of the Father’s acceptance of the Son! Hence in Psa. 22 when heard from the horns of the unicorns, His first thought is, “I will declare Thy name to My brethren;” and then He praises (in the joy of the answer and relationship with His Father into which He enters on the answer) “in the midst of the congregation,” His Father and our Father, His God and our God; and all the joy He has in coming with “Therefore doth my Father love me” added to His everlasting delight, into the renewed light of His Father’s countenance He puts us in, and we sing with Him in it.
Our salvation is in the perfectness of God’s necessary answer to Christ’s cry according to the claim of Christ, and what God must feel about it and as to it. J.N.D.

Christ's Life and Death

God hath sent His Son that we might live through Him; but He sent Him also as the propitiation for our sins by His death. For having life does not change our place; which is by His dying and entering as man risen into a new place according to His work. And baptism is the sign, not of quickening as Christendom says, but of our burial with Him unto death (Rom. 6) as well as of washing away our sins (Acts 22:16).

Christ's Life Has Two Parts

There were two parts of Christ’s life: man’s obedience to God’s will, nay, to the law, if you will, for he came under the law; but there was another, the manifestation of God Himself in grace and graciousness. This is not law: it is God in goodness, not man in responsibility

Christ's Lordship

We are brought into connection with the Lord Jesus not only in his character of grace, but of lordship. What is the first mark he has stamped on your heart? This—that Jesus must be known and honored; I belong to him; I must yield myself to him in everything. Are you doing your own will or his? If you have large thoughts of grace, magnificent thoughts of glory to come, but have not said, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” you are not on right ground. You have to come to this— “my own plans go for nothing, I now belong to another.” if you have large thoughts of grace, has it taught you to yield your own will to God’s? If you have large thoughts of your privileges, do you see your responsibility? If you are talking of glory, is it connected with obedience? You may have right thoughts, nicely packed together, as for a long voyage, but they are of no good to you, if there is not in you the spirit of obedience

Christ's Love

Christ loved, and, because He loved, gave Himself. In this we have proof of His Deity. God alone is self-sufficient, needing no motive other than His own nature. He does what He does because He is what He is. For a creature to love a sinner would be indifference to sin, ungodliness, the finding something in the creature to outweigh the obnoxiousness of the guilt. See Gen. 6 The fairness of the outward appearance hid the blackness of the guilt within. The judgment of God should have been to the sons of God, what the commandment was to man in Eden; but they, like Eve, look and desire what was forbidden to her by the word, to them by the moral character of the objects. The cross declares, not only that the Son of God loved me because He is love, but His oneness with God in His righteous judgment of all my guilt, and this by taking upon Himself all that the judgment was, in its divine reality.
Worthy O Lamb of God, art Thou,
That every knee to Thee should bow.

The Church, Christ's Epistle

It is the Christian, or the church, which gives Christ His character before the world. They are His epistle to the world. We may know how to distinguish and understand the representation; but the world, the infidel, judges of what Christianity is, by what Christians are.

Church Obedience

To apply the ruin of the assembly to sanction disobedience is a principle wholly unallowable. I cannot appoint elders: it is not a question of obedience, but authority, and I have not the authority. The assembly had it not when Paul was alive, nor can they assume it now. They had not power to deliver to Satan then, they have not now; but they were bound to obey the command to put out then, and they are so now. Wherever two or three are really gathered together unto the Lord’s name, He is in the midst; and there is the “within” and the “without.” It is a clearing of the conscience of the assembly: “ye have proved yourselves clear in this matter” (2 Cor. 7). Otherwise the assembly would be positive sanction (and by Christ’s presence) of the association of Christ and sin; and it would be far better there should be no assembly at all than that. 2 Tim. 2 gives us the general principle of every one who calls himself a Christian separating from iniquity, purging himself from false teachers, and walking with those who call upon the Lord’s name out of a pure heart. It is individual duty when evil has come in.
In bestowing power God is sovereign. When the word has spoken, I am bound to obey. To refuse obedience to it is to disobey—to assume on my own will authority not to act till God chooses to do that which rests on His own will. J.N.D.

The Church of God - Its Members and Unity: Review

Such is the title of a little tract just given for a brief notice to help souls. The writer follows the traditional view that the church means all believers from the beginning. When proof is required, he falls back on another tradition about Hades, and again on the promises given to Abraham, which occupy the most of his argument. But where is the direct, distinct, and full evidence of scripture? Even he admits that “the building of the Church began in Christ risen and glorified” (p. 4). How then could it consist of all saints, not merely from Abraham, but from Abel? The foundation laid efficaciously is Jesus Christ; dogmatically, it is that of the apostles and prophets who taught what we have now written in the new and final revelation of God. There was therefore no building together for God’s habitation in Spirit before Christ came, wrought the work of redemption, and ascended on high as head over all things. The church existed only in divine purpose when Abel, Enoch, and Noah bore witness, or when Abraham, Isaac and Jacob followed in due time. In Jehovah’s dealings with Israel was a state of things manifestly incompatible with the church; for by divine authority Jew and Gentile were severed peremptorily till the death of Christ. Compare the mission of the Twelve, while Jesus lived, in Matt. 10:5, 6. His death, resurrection, and ascension laid the ground for the Spirit to baptize the believers into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether bond or free (1 Cor. 12:13). There is not a word about the antediluvian saints, nor yet those from Abraham downwards, when scripture speaks of the new gathering into one in union by the Spirit with the glorified Head. Scripture never tells us of the departed spirits in this connection. It was a new work for God’s glory for men on earth associated with Christ in heavenly places by the Holy Spirit sent forth to dwell and form into unity, as could only be by His divine presence since Jesus was glorified.
Heb. 12:22-24 (here misunderstood and perverted) gives us a beautiful view of the various objects to which the Christian is come by faith, in contrast with Israel at Sinai. Each is distinguished from the preceding by the connecting particle “and,” which clears away the confusion of “general assembly, and church” &c. “Ye have come to mount Zion,” he says, the mountain of grace, not to Sinai of law; “and to a living God’s city, heavenly Jerusalem,” the general image of heavenly hope; “and to myriads of angels, a universal assemblage” (the natural denizens on high); “and to a church of first-borns, enrolled in heaven” (by sovereign grace); “and to God, judge of all”; “and to spirits of just [men] made perfect; and to Jesus, mediator of a new (or, fresh) covenant; and to blood of sprinkling speaking better than Abel.” The spirits of just men made perfect are beyond doubt the O.T. saints, expressly a company distinct from the “church of first-borns” as associated with Him who is in the highest sense the First-born. To say that the subject here “is unity not diversity” is to miss the mark and to assert a glaring error. “General assembly” or “universal assemblage” is a further description of “myriads of angels”; and “blood of sprinkling” is for a blessing on the earth (not to bring a curse like Abel’s blood); whilst “a fresh covenant” is to comfort the Israel of the future when restored: the virtue of the covenant will be as new as when their progenitors rejected the apostolic preaching of it.
Equally perverted is the plain truth of Heb. 11:39, 40, wherein it is taught that the O.T. saints, though they obtained witness through faith did not receive the promise at Christ’s coming, “God having foreseen some better thing for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us.” We are both to enter on our respective place in glory together when He comes again; but to say that they are to share a “better thing” with us is to deprive the passage of its only possible meaning. God foresaw it for us, of which they had no notion whatever, any more than the writer sees the truth now.
Further, the gathering of all things in Eph. 1:10 is the future restitution of all things in Christ, entirely distinct from that unity of believing Jews and Gentiles which the apostle subjoins. Of course the members of Christ’s body share saintship with the antediluvian faithful and all others; as they are spiritually Abraham’s seed, heirs according to promise. But they have their own special privilege as members of His body, which only began when He had the place of Head given Him in heaven after redemption.

Church Seen Only in Christ

In the book of Revelation, as in all prophecy, the Church is seen only in Christ: so the rapture in chap. 12, and the saints are seen in full distinctness in chap. 19. Only before the prophecy begins, their place in respect of the judgments is seen (in chap. 4, as kings on their thrones, though owning all glory to be the Creator’s, the Almighty; and in chap. 5 as priest).

Church's Part

The church’s part is to confess the truth when communicated, not to communicate it. God reveals to and by individuals, as apostles and prophets. Accordingly, the apostle says, not “where” but “of whom hast thou learned these things.”

Coming to the Father

By receiving Jesus, by believing in Him, and only so, we come to the Father. Christ is the way, and there is none other. Besides, He is the truth, the revelation of every one and of everything as they are. He is also the life, in which that truth is, by the Spirit’s power, known and enjoyed. In every way Christ is the only possible means of our entering into this blessedness. “I am the way, the truth, and the life.”


Some are afraid of the word, “commandments,” as if it would weaken love and the idea of a new creation; scripture is not. Obedience and keeping the commandments of one we love is the proof of that love and the delight of the new creature. Did I do all right, and not do it in obedience, I should do nothing right, because my true relationship and heart-reference to God would be left out.

Communication From God

If there be no inspiration, we have no communication from God—the greatest privilege one can have on earth—the only thing that puts us in a sure and divine way in relationship and intercourse with God.

Communication From God

The poorest believer knows what he means by inspiration. He could not define it—does not know what “define” means; but he knows he has communications from God in which his soul drinks of living water—a word of God sharper than any two-edged sword, discerning the thoughts and intents of the heart. They have an authority over him which he delights to obey—reproofs, if needed, his heart bows to—promises his faith leans on—a Savior revealed whom his soul loves; and all this because he receives it with a divine faith as inspired, as God’s word, as God’s having condescended (taken pains, shall I say?) to speak to him for every want here and the brightness of heavenly hopes hereafter.

Comparison of Isa. 63 and 1 Cor. 2

The difference between Isa. 63 and gospel knowledge as made by Paul in 1 Cor. 2 is striking, often quoted for just the contrary. These things, he says, have not entered into man’s heart; but God has revealed them unto us (Christians) by His Spirit: so at the end of the chapter, “but we have the mind of Christ.”


Conscience, under the influence of the word, takes knowledge of principles which are judged by it, even when all is not yet ripe for judgment, and as yet the judgment is not executed.


The question may arise, How far grounds of judgment, and so far of reason, enter into conscience; and I answer, Not at all: they go to lead to the estimate of the fact of the relationship, and whether it be violated; and I conclude that the thing is wrong. I then pronounce judgment, not on the thing, but on myself; or another conscience is at work. I call it wrong: but conscience always judges the thing. But there are thus three ideas connected in our mind with conscience, which we must look at if we would not have confusion in our minds: (1) the sense of responsibility to a Being above us, principally to God, not the duty of loving Him (this is law), but authority (this Adam had before the fall); (2) the sense of good and evil; (3) the self-judgment, or repulsion of heart as to others, produced by it when an act is contemplated it condemns. The second, I apprehend, is properly conscience.

Conscience Hardened

Ecclesiastical influence is always greatest at the moment when the conscience is hardened against the testimony of God; because unbelief, which trembles after all, shelters itself behind the presumed stability of that which God had set up and makes a wall of its apostate forms against the God whom they hide, attributing to these ordinances the stability of God Himself.


Creating is a matter of testimony. We cannot really conceive a form existing without a maker, but we cannot conceive “how”; for if we could, it would not be creating. Productive means would exist, corresponding to the capacity of my nature, which is not that of a creator. Ex nihilo nihil fit only expresses the extent of human capacity, both intrinsic and experimental. As the reign of law only applies to the order of what is, what is objectively thinkable cannot apply to creating; which as an idea is not thinkable, though necessary to formal being, which is thinkable or subject to reason. Creation, i.e., what is created, is thinkable; creating is not. The causa causata of schoolmen is law; causa causans is God.
The Bible Treasury vol 17 p 379
Present Truth Publishers CD Collection

The Cross and the Crown

The cross and the crown go together: and, more than this, the cross and communion go together. The cross touches my natural will, and therefore it breaks down and takes away that which hinders communion. It was when Peter rejected the thought of the cross that Jesus said, “get thee behind me, Satan; thou art an offense unto me.” it is with a rejected Savior we have to walk. The whole system of the world is a stumbling-block to turn the heart from God, dress, vain show, flattery, even the commonest things, which tend to elevate nature. All that puts us into the rich man’s place is a stumbling-block. Heaven is opened to a rejected Christ. Remember this. God’s heart is set upon carrying his saints along this road to glory. He would have us walk by faith and not by sight. Whatever tends in me to exalt the world that rejected Christ is a stumbling-block to others; in short, anything that weakens the perception of the excellency of Christ in the weakest saint.

The Cross of Christ

The more we study the cross, the more we shall see that every question of good and evil was brought to an issue, and the immutable basis laid for perfect blessing according to what God is in righteousness and grace and majesty too, yea for the new heavens and new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness: we come by the blessed testimony that it meets all our wants; but in contemplating it at peace, we see man in absolute sin, hating and rejecting God in grace and goodness; we see Satan’s full power, and all the world else in his power against Christ; we see Man in absolute goodness, loving the Father and obedient, glorifying God in the very place of sin, where it was needed, and at all cost; we see God as now here in perfect love to the sinner. Innocence was conditional blessing. This is completed in perfectness, and its value can never change. It is everlasting righteousness. Hence the blessing of the new heavens and new earth is immutable. There has been an innocent Eden. There is a sinful world. There shall be, besides the reign of righteousness, new heavens and a new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness. J.N.D.

The Cross

The cross. Whether we think of God’s glory or of Christ’s, or of the practical effect on our hearts, it is the cross that is efficacious as a sacrifice for sin. It glorifies God, infinitely honors Christ, and perfectly blesses man in love and righteousness. Jesus was God manifest in flesh, as to person supremely glorious in dignity and so enabled to do the work of redemption; but never as to work and service was He so glorious as on the cross.

The Cross

See how in the cross the whole question of good and evil was brought to an issue in every way. First it was the complete display of man’s enmity against God—the contemptuous rejection of God come in love (for this love He had hatred); and in every detail, disciples, priests, Pilate, all bring out the evil that is in man. Then, Satan’s power is fully manifested, and that over men in their passions, and in one sense in death, at least in the sorrows of Christ’s soul. Next, we see the perfect man as nowhere else: perfect love to the Father; perfect absolute obedience, and this in the very place of sin and the cup it had filled, and in human weakness, Satan’s power (though above both in looking to God), and the forsaking of God. And then God Himself in perfect righteousness against sin, and in sovereign perfect infinite love to the sinner—His majesty and truth both made good. Such is the cross. In the history of eternity it stands alone. Man in God’s glory is its blessed result. J. N. D.

A Daysman

In what state did the Lord Jesus find men when He came? He found them “all under sin.” And what does Job say of himself as being in this condition? “If I wash myself with snow-water, and make my hands never so clean, yet thou shalt plunge me in the ditch, and mine own clothes shall abhor me. Neither is there any daysman betwixt us, that might lay his hand upon us both. Let him take his fear away, then would I speak; but it is not so with me.”
Now what do I find in Christ when He came? I find “a daysman” —the very thing that Job wanted. Was there fear in Christ? Was anyone afraid of Christ? If a sinner was ever so burdened, he could go to Christ and then to God. I find that though my sins hindered me from going to God, they could not hinder God from coming to me!

Dead to Sin

How easy to make a false step, and how hard to retrace! It is the old difficulty of repentance toward God and insuperable to nature, it is only overcome by the faith that takes Christ as all, and ourselves as nothing but sinful and lost, and now to reckon ourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus. For if Christ is in us the body is dead on account of sin, but the Spirit life on account of righteousness.

Death for the Believer

I have (says the apostle) “a desire to depart and be with Christ.” Death to the believer is not a parting but a meeting, if our center and supreme affections are with Christ. Death is not a sorrowful parting but a joyful meeting; for it does not become us to sorrow as those without hope. For why? They that sleep in Jesus go to Jesus, and God brings them with Him. If indeed he values earthly things more than Christ’s presence, then sorrow will accompany his death. But it is the proper distinction of Christianity to have neutralized the power of death. For the sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law; but the believer is dead to both in the death of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is a parting not in but with feebleness and helplessness, we know whither, that is, to Christ; so that whither we go we know, and the way we know. It has not yet been manifested (i.e. to sight) what we shall be; but we know that, if He is manifested, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.


Deborah “judged Israel in those days.” This was not quite such a successor to him who was “King in Jeshurun” as we might have counted on. But the honor had passed into the hand of a woman, for Israel was out of order. Trespass had come in with a disturbing force; and the remedy must be applied if at all by God’s own hand. And so it was. Therefore in her magnificent song she sings, “O my soul, thou hast trodden down strength,” a confession that the source of her strength and victory was all in God, and that in the energy of the Spirit, and that only, she had fought the battle of the Lord and conquered.

Dependent Being Elevated by Want

A dependent being or a revolted one, perhaps a revolted dependent one, is elevated by its wants, not by its powers. Its powers may develop it, but cannot elevate it. But if I have a want, which is not power, and there is that which meets my want outside myself, I become acquainted with it. I appreciate it, not by power, but by dependence on the quality by which my want is supplied. Hunger is not power; but it enjoys and appropriates food which gives power. Weakness is not power: but if my languid body leans on kindly and supporting strength, my felt weakness-makes me know what strength is. But I learn more by it. I learn the kindness, patience, goodness, readiness, help, and perseverance in helping, which sustain me. I have the experience of independent strength, adapted, suited to my weakness. I know its capacity to sustain what is beyond itself, which is not my power elevating itself in internal development-self-filling power. There is love.
Now this relationship of wants to that which supplies them in another is the link between my nature and all the qualities of the nature I lean on, and which supplies these wants. I know its qualities by the way it meets my not having them-my want of power. It is a moral link too. I know love by it, and all the unfolding of goodness: self-power never does. The exaltation of what is human in itself is the positive loss of what is divine; that is, infinite positive loss. There is immense moral depth in the apostle’s word: “When I am weak, then am I strong.” And the more I have of God, and the more absolutely it is so, the more I gain. All is appropriated, but self is destroyed. It is not that I cease to exist, or to enjoy. It is not a Buddhist or stoical pantheistic absorption into God. I am always the conscious I forever; yet an I which does not think of I, but of God in whom its delight is. It is a wonderful perfection-an absolute delight in what is perfect, but in what is perfect out of ourselves; so that self is morally annihilated, though it always is there personally to enjoy. This is partly now in the form of thirst, though there be enjoyment-hereafter, for those who have it, perfect enjoyment face to face.

Deuteronomy 31:25 and Acts 20:17, 29

Compare Deut. 31:25, and Acts 20:17, 29, &C. the Analogy Is Very Remarkable

Devotion in Service

“To me to live is Christ.” So said the blessed apostle; and are we not called to be followers of Him as he was of Christ? Can anything be more blessed? And do we not happily confess that He “loved me and gave Himself for me?” May it be ours to devote ourselves to Him in all our daily walk and service!


The word διδακτικός is not the gift of teaching, properly so called; it means suitable to communicate the truth he might have. It is a practical qualification as all the others, not a specific gift. What confirms in this is 2 Tim. 2:24, where it is among the qualities characterizing the manners to the Lord’s servant, as avoiding foolish questions, and dealing with souls for their instruction. (1 Tim. 3:2; Titus 1)

Difference Between Blessing and Giving Thanks

1 Cor. 14:16, 17. There is a difference between blessing and giving thanks. Blessing goes out toward, and is swallowed up with, the object of praise; while giving of thanks refers rather to the motives for gratitude in him who litters the thanks. Blessing is unlimited; while giving of thanks is measured by the feelings of the one who offers them. Nevertheless they are hath necessary and essential parts of worship.

Difference Between Love and Self

Self likes to be served and thinks itself great; love serves and is great.

Differences in Philippians 3:9-10

Phil. 3:9, 10 are different in this: verse 9 looks to having Christ in glory, to be found in Him before God, accepted and glorified; verse 10 is what was wanted of Christ for down here. This is what answers in the path to the place of verse 9 in the presence of God.

A Different Gospel Which Is Not Another

“He that knoweth God, heareth us,” says the apostle. “He that is not of God, heareth not us; thereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error” (1 John 4:6).
Is it apostolic teaching? For in this we are called to continue; and though an angel preach otherwise than what we have received through the apostles (1 Cor. 15; 2 Tim. 3:14), Paul does not hesitate, in the Holy Ghost, to say, “Let him be accursed.” For no lie is of the truth, but works evil always, however insidiously.
Are we wiser than God? Is not our duty to obey, unquestioningly, the plain word of God? “And this is love, that we walk after His commandments.”

Discernment of Spirits

It is not false doctrine abstractedly, neither is it a person, but evil spirits are at work, and this discernment of spirits is in question in 1 John 1-3.
Verses 3 and 4. How gracious of God to permit the evil then to be manifested, that we might have the light and truth needed to meet it in our day. Greater is He THAT is in us, than he that is in the world.

Disproportion of Truth

Disproportion of truth is the thing we suffer from. Competency to judge of truth is the portion of every child of God. (1 John)

Distinguishing Between Sins and Sorrows

Your comfort and enlargement of heart in walking with God, will depend not a little on your rightly distinguishing between your sins and your sorrows. To take all your natural, it may be sometimes your Christ-like, sorrows to the blood of atonement, as if they were altogether sinful, would have the effect, not of softening your heart, but of hardening it; of bringing not light, but darkness into your soul; not of augmenting, but of diminishing, your love to Jesus. O how Satan strives to make us believe that our Lord is an austere man! How he labors to give us false views and impressions of the character of our Lord! Believe nothing about Christ which the word of God does not warrant. You know well what Christ is, you have been in His company, you have tasted that He is gracious, your experience has taught you that He does sympathize with you in all your afflictions. Come then to Him with all your sorrows, and, oh! you will have good cause to say that He who wept at the grave of Lazarus is still the same, no less Godlike in His power to comfort, and no less man-like in the flowing forth of His compassions.

Distrust of God

Before Satan introduced lusts into man’s heart, He produced distrust of God: when this was brought in, man was easily a prey—all was really done. So with what infinite goodness and surpassing grace God attracts and warrants confidence for the chief of sinners in Christ.

Divine Law

The divine law asserts God’s authority, and declares man’s responsibility, but does not, save in type, go beyond the exercise of His judgment. The gospel reveals what God is and what He has done for the sinner in Christ. The law only required what man should be.

Dying for an Enemy

Man could die for a benefactor perhaps; but he is not capable, in true simple-hearted love, of unostentatiously dying for an enemy. God’s becoming a man to do it silences the heart, and creates, by the sovereign title of love, a new order of feeling.

A Dying Paul

A dying Paul.-2 Timothy illustrates the victory of faith and hope in Paul’s soul. He was in prison, forsaken by brethren, apprehensive of the ill condition and of the coming apostasy of the Church; but all was faith and hope in his soul, sure and bright; and in further proof of this victory, he is thoughtful of others. Hope has purified him. See like victory in dying Jacob and in dying David. (Gen. 47, &c.; 1 Chron. 28, &c.) See it also in the camp at the close of their journey. (Josh. 1-4) Faith overcame all accusing recollections; hope overcame all present attractions in Jacob and David.
The sense of the glory lies so instinctively on Paul’s heart that he speaks of it as “that day” indefinitely. (Chap. i. 12, 18; iv. 8.) Faith and hope get their perfect victories in the soul of Christ. (See Heb. 12:1, 2.) See Him as dying. (John 13, &c.; xix. 27.) The Church is always to be thus. (Rev. 22:17.)
The person of Christ is the object of faith; but he who believes has part in the righteousness of God, which is revealed as the portion of the believer.
The Bible Treasury is published by George Morrish, (late T. H. Gregg) 24, Warwick Lane, Paternoster Row; to whose care all letters for the Editor, Books for review, Acc., should be sent. Sold also by Bnoon, 34, Paternoster Row, London; R. TURLEY, Wolverhampton; FRYER, 2, Bridewell Street, Bristol; JABEZ TONLEY, Guernsey;.SCOTT A ALLAN, Glasgow; A. RAINES, Oxford Terrace, Southampton; and by order through any bookseller. Annual Subscription by post, Four Shillings.

The Ear, Mind, and Soul

The ear is the gateway, and the mind the avenue, but the soul is the dwelling-place of divine truth. J.G.B.

Ear to Hear

In Rev. 2; 3, simultaneously with bringing in the Lord’s coming, the “ear to hear” comes after distinguishing the overcomers. Such a remnant only is looked for.

Early Testimonies (Fragment)

IN Adam and Eve (under the judgment where man is still) was shown figuratively sovereign grace, which clothed them with a garment that testified to death, before they were driven out; then, in Abel the sacrifice by which the fallen can approach God; next, life eternal in Enoch taken up to heaven, after bearing witness of the Lord’s coming with myriads of His saints to execute judgment; lastly, in Noah the end of the age was announced, and the judgment gone through, before emerging for a new earth. Compare Heb. 11:1-7.

Eliezer and Laban

In Eliezer’s dealings with Rebekah, it is jewels first; with Laban, it is bringing into the house before the jewels. The Spirit alone acts in the power and confidence of grace. Laban was a legalist.


In the Book of Esther we see the Gentile wife set aside on account of her disobedience and her failure in displaying her beauty to the world, and she is succeeded by a Jewish wife who possesses the king’s affections; we see the audacious power of Haman, the Gentile oppressor of the Jews destroyed, and the Jewish Mordecai, protector of Esther, formerly despised and disgraced but raised to glory and honor in place of the Gentile.


The writer of papers on Gen. 1 has been told, that p. 210 teaches evolution. The notion is absolutely false. No evolutionist can consistently talk of “creatures.” No believer can deny that plants preceded fishes and birds, as these were followed by land animals low and high, last of all by man created separately and with special marks of distinction. Here is in the Adamic week “a succession rising to a higher organization from a lower.” A similar analogy marks God’s creative energy in the previous ages of geology; save that man and certain congeners were not then made. But all this uproots evolution. The objector understands neither the truth of creation nor the error of evolution.

The Exercise of Power

If the life of the soul does not answer to the gifts, the exercise of power becomes only the forerunner of failure. It is thus that we see Elijah fleeing before Jezebel, after having done such great things before all Israel.

Exodus 6

Exodus 6 is the beginning of God’s proper relationship with Israel. He gives Himself a covenant name What goes before is preparatory, as in ch. 3. a personal name (Eh’ yeh) not repeated here, where He gives the name (Jehovah) by which He was to be known by them. It is in no way said that Elohim had not that name, His nature and character. Yet He did not appear to the fathers by it, but as Shaddai. He was making Himself known to the children of Israel by His name Jehovah. J. N. D.

Experimental Power of Romans 5-8

The beginning of 2 Corinthians presents the experimental power of that which is doctrinally taught in Rom. 5:12—ch. 8, and is extremely instructive in this respect.

Extract: Christianity Characteristically Heavenly

Christianity is characteristically heavenly. He who is essentially its life and exemplar is Christ, as we know Him, risen and enthroned at the right hand of God; and the Holy Ghost is come down, since Christ was glorified, to be the power and guide of the Christian and the church here below. It was the business of the Christian individually and corporately to maintain this for their testimony both as truth and in practice. Not only have they not maintained it, but they have allowed themselves to become Judaized. What the apostle Paul fought against so energetically during his ministry has taken place, and there has been a most painful compound of heavenly truth with earthly rule, practice, and hope. The consequence is that conglomerate, which we commonly now call “Christendom,” consisting of Greek church and Roman, Oriental and Protestant bodies of every description, national or dissenting.
Where is the witness to the one body animated by the one Spirit? These various and opposed communities may have different measures of light, but in none do they exhibit an approach to an adequate testimony, either of the Spirit’s presence and power, or of the word of God, in subjection to the Lord Jesus. They really testify to the actual state of ruin which pervades the house of God, though doubtless to His infinite patience and grace.

Facts and Persons: Not a Myth

I look upon it as a divine mercy, and great goodness, that Christianity is a religion of persons and facts. It is more real, more simple, more divine, deeper yet more accessible. God became a man! I have not ideas in man’s mind about Him, but Himself. It is not what love is in my mind, but God Who is love. So even atonement: it is not a questionable reconciliation in abstract possibilities, but expiation wrought by love. Yet the principles, in relationship with God by these facts, are so deep and immense that they absorb, especially when He is not really known, the facts in which they are verified. J. N. D.
By J.N.D.


Faith brings to God and separates from the world.
Just Published, Price 6d.
BY J. N. D.

Faith and Failure

It is often after a great effort of faith, that failure comes in. See the case of Gideon.

Faith and Righteousness of God

The person of Christ is the object of faith; but he who believes has part in the righteousness of God, which is revealed as the portion of the believer.

Faith of the Shunammite

Compare the faith of the Shunammite in 2 Kings 4 with that of her of Zarephath in 1 Kings 17. The latter put her dead into her bosom, the former on the prophet’s bed. Death reminded one of her own sin; it reminded the other of God’s resources.

Faith Shown in Love for God's Work

In times of difficulty faith does not show itself in the magnificence of the result but in love for God’s work, however little it may be, and in the perseverance with which it is carried on through all this state of weakness.

Fear and Love

There is no fear when it is a question of God’s love. “Perfect love casteth out fear, for fear hath torment; he that feareth is not perfected in love.” And the love of God has been manifested “to us,” that it may also be perfected “in us,” as, further, it is perfected “on our behalf,” so that we have boldness in the day of judgment.

Feeble Light and Strength of Will Go Together

Where there is feeble light, there is generally great strength of will.

Five Books of Psalms

The first two books of Psalms are distinguishable from the last three in this: the first and second are more Christ personally among the Jews; the third, fourth, and fifth are more national and historical.

The Flesh

The flesh may be bold or fearful, and may be both in the same man. Moses killed the Egyptian; and later he says, “I am slow of speech and of a slow tongue.”

The Flood

In Enoch translated to heaven before the deluge, and in Noah preserved through it, we have typically the rapture to heaven of the church previous to the Apocalyptic judgments through which a people is preserved for the earth.

Follow Thou Me

Alas! how the heart can spring up, when set at ease, after all manner of dealings with it. Peter, so humbled, so wonderfully restored by exhaustless grace, must know what shall happen to John. What ease! He loved John surely; and it served as occasion to revelation. Still the Lord must say, “What is that to thee?” and turn back to the “Follow thou me.”

The Force of Regeneration

“REGENERATION” (παλιγγενεσία, Titus 3:5) does not mean “being born again” (ἀναγεννάω, or γ. ἄνωθεν). It is used, besides the passage about “the washing of regeneration,” only in the end of Matt. 19 for the millennial state. The “renewing of the Holy Ghost” is a distinct thing from the “regeneration,” which last signifies a change from one state to another.

Forgiveness and Positive Grace

While final judgment refers to, and is measured by, our responsibility, forgiveness cannot be separated from our entrance into the presence of God (though in experience there may be progress as to this), because it is by a work of Christ in which the veil was rent and God fully revealed. This the great day of atonement showed; for there the blood was brought in to God, and yet it was for sins, but sins as defiling God’s presence as well as their being all carried away. But at the brazen altar there was both the love that gave, and the value of the sacrifices; so that divine favor and complacency were brought in: “therefore doth my Father love me” (John 10). Hence sin-offerings and burnt-offerings were offered; but they both referred to acceptance, negatively and positively; not simply to the holiness of God as the blood on the day of atonement. We have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, but according to the riches of His grace.

Fragmentary Notes

Negatives are universal, and are therefore dangerous things. If I say a thing is not in scripture, I must know all scripture to say so.
Mary is the mother of Him who is God; not mother of God, as the Roman Catholics say.
It is most important to hold Christ’s eternal Sonship, for if I lose the eternal Son I lose the eternal Father also. He never could have been sent from heaven either; but He says, “I came forth from God, and am come into the world.”
It is remarkable that in chapter 1 of John’s Gospel, where you have nearly all the names of the Lord, you do not get His relative names, such as Head, Priest, &c.
In the parable of the talents in Matthew we have grace; in that of the pounds in Luke, responsibility.
It is only when the coming of the Lord is looked for that you will find bridal affections.
The consciousness of life could never be produced till after redemption.
When you have Gethsemane fully brought out, as in Luke, you find the Lord humanly above the sufferings at the cross.
The object is to get the good fish and throw the bad away—I must leave the tares; that is, I discriminate as to good and not as to bad in a positive way.
The large system outside is founded on the ground of the non-recognition of Paul’s ministry, a denial of the παρουσία—coming.
We are to be transformed into a glorified Christ, though we feed on a humbled Christ.
We have to do with a dead Christ at the Lord’s table; we have no such Christ existing. The Lutheran theory is a glorified Christ brought down there.
Being occupied with a glorified Christ makes one like a humbled Christ down here. Power is in the glorified Christ (Phil. 3), character in the humbled. (Phil. 2)
Nature will neither receive the death nor the glory.
We could not have miracles now on account of the sects, because a miracle would be virtually saying, Here is the Church.
Deacons were only chosen to manage the distribution of money, and by those who gave it. Elders were authoritative and appointed from above.
Christ is Savior of the body (that is, our body).
A broad path is not a broad heart, but a broad conscience.
Do we sufficiently understand, that though it was a poor woman speaking to Him, by His side, and talking to Him about her sins, that the person to whom she was talking was God?
No sin of the saint, properly speaking, is willfulness; it is the will of the flesh: the saint yields to it, no doubt. In another shape, all sin is willfulness. But real willfulness is determination to have one’s own way in spite of God, which amounts to denial of God.

Fragmentary Notes on 1 and 2 Timothy

(1 Timothy)
The fact of flesh (i.e., of the flesh being in us) does not make a bad conscience. It requires flesh in action, so as to produce outwardly what is bad to do so.
“Holding faith and a good conscience” —in this we have the doctrine of the epistle.
I may see what is beautiful in creation, and delight in it; but the moment I rest in it, I make it an object, and then sink down into it.
“We know” is a technical expression for Christian knowledge. It is not merely knowing objectively, but rather such and such is made a subject of revelation, and we have got it and know it.
“Using the law lawfully” is convicting sinners by it. The legalist takes the ground that the law proves he cannot take. The law never goes beyond the brazen altar, that is, man’s responsibility as man.
The law condemns all that flesh produces, but not flesh itself.
The sabbath—rest—is an integral part of man’s relationship with God; God did rest in creation, but not now since man has fallen. The sabbath is annexed to everything (or order) that is set up (with responsible man as man); but in the New Testament, it is always set aside as is man, the child of Adam fallen.
Paul calls himself the chief of sinners; that is, he was a rejecter of the Lord after He was crucified and glorified; the Jew (properly speaking, is characterized as being) a rejecter before He was crucified. Stephen’s martyrdom was the closing scene of the dispensation for the Jew. The chief of sinners is an end of self, and we are in the same boat with Paul when we take that place.
The gospel of the glory (of Christ) is the highest point of grace as it reveals the glory to the person who is trying to destroy it: in preaching, however, you must go back to where the want is in the soul.
“Make shipwreck of faith” is running into heresy, backsliding, giving up a good conscience.
Not only man has fallen—there are fallen angels, and the heavens are defiled; all things had and are to be reconciled. Those that are reconciled do need a mediator for intercession. A mediator comes in with a broken relationship, an advocate with a retained one.
In Ephesians we are called on to be imitators of God; in Colossians, like Christ; in Philippians, to walk as a saint, as personified in Paul.
An unmarried man might be a ruler, but he could not be an elder. A ruler is a gift, an elder an office; gifts are for the body; office is local. We have an example in Timothy of a young man who ruled elders. A ruler is a person who gets an ascendency over others morally and keeps their wills from working by the power of the word in the Spirit.
Christianity takes up creation as God made it and sanctions it, and brings in another power, viz., spiritual power.
The snare of the devil which is a bad conscience, brings in the same condemnation; the person is charged with the same thing Satan is charged with, viz., pride. See Ezek. 28
The precious stones are on the king of Tire in creation (worldly glory); on Aaron in grace (the high priest); in the new Jerusalem, in glory.
The Holy Ghost dwells in the individual believer, and in the whole Church, only.
Justified in the Spirit” —that is, the power of the Spirit characterizes the justification. “Seen of angels;” it is only by Christ angels have seen God. “Believed on in the world,” that is, announced and received there by faith.
The Reformation reformed the existing body as it then was: we go back to the beginning.
The everlasting covenant has a different character from the new covenant. There are many covenants in scripture, but the old and new are distinct, and with Israel only.
Every prophetic word comes from relationship broken; for us now, as Christians and in Christ, everything is restored. (1 Tim. 4:5.) Hence the creature is sanctified by the word to me, prayer goes up from me in response.
There are two characters of forgiveness of sins—the one as in Romans, justification, in which man has no power, the other, the sins or failure of a justified person. The Church can forgive these. It is administrative forgiveness.
Dependence is kept up in scripture without ever questioning acceptance.
Salvation is by grace; reward is for labor.
God is the only one that has immortality in Himself. When we speak of mortality, it only applies to the body. “The soul that sinneth it shall die” means that each one shall die for his own sin; in other words, it is individual responsibility.
(2 Timothy.)
When the power of evil comes in, then it is just the time to expect courage. These are truths for the times. There are truths for eternity, which are more blessed. Through grace we now have Paul’s testimony, which bad been lost, brought out again.
In the early Church they used to pray for the saints, not to them. In the fourth century Christ was the only one they did not pray for.
“Purge from.” It is not exactly discipline here, but to separate myself from. There is the Lord’s certainty, and man’s responsibility, acting on which I then get ecclesiastical apprehension.
A thing may not be wrong for a person ecclesiastically, if he has no conscience about it; at the same time the Church cannot be ruled by an individual person’s conscience.
The word “receiving” (into communion) should not be admitted at all. Properly speaking, we are all in. One has now to ascertain whether people are real—who calls on the Lord out of a pure heart.
“The last days” are more definite and distinct than the “latter times” — “perilous,” because of the form of godliness.
It is said, You must believe in the Church because it is holy, and you must believe it is holy by faith!
We are always deficient in strength in service if we do not recognize that we have to do with Satanic power, as in Jannes and Jambres.
If I do not believe the word till it is sanctioned by some one else, I do not believe it at all; it is the sanction I believe.
No one speaks of the Church but Paul, nor of Christ’s coming for the Church but he.
When we meet together, we recognize the presence of Christ, not the habitation of God.
External testimony proves the folly of other men, but does nothing for faith. All arguments only remove the rubbish, they do not give faith. By removing rubbish from a plant, you do not make it grow, but you give it liberty to do so.
A gospel rejecter is under the responsibility of rejecting love. There is rather a want of will to come than a want of power: “Ye will not come unto me that ye might have life.”
We find that angels are the power of providence, Israel the power of government, and the apostles the power of grace in the Spirit.

French Revolution

At the French revolution man emancipated himself—to have what? Uncertainty in everything, and a ruin from which he found no resource. Conscience and the Bible, under God’s good hand, emancipated at the reformation—imperfectly, but really; man’s will, without the Bible, at the Revolution.

Full of Faith, Grace, and Power

We may, in a measure, be so accustomed to what we may call the ordinary ways of the Lord, as to be forgetful of His special interventions whether in blessing or in judgment. But if our expectations of His grace were but simple and livelier, would we not know more of sudden—not always immediate answers to our prayers? Oh, that, like Stephen, we might be “full of faith and of the Holy Ghost,” “of grace and power”!

The Fulness of Him That Filleth All in All

The fullness of Him that filleth all in all is not simply Godhead, but Christ in redemption. Eph. 4:10 leads one to this. It is redemption, He who went into the lower parts of the earth is now far above all heavens.

Genesis 3

Gen. 3 presents only the earthly or governmental consequences of sin. Whatever were the developments of relationship, or the experiences of saints which necessarily savored of the truth, the full separation from God which sin causes was only brought out when he himself was revealed and indeed could only then be. Such is what we find in Rom. 1:18.


Gideon was not of Judah, to whom such honors had by ancient right belonged, but of Manasseh; and his family the least in Manasseh. But such an one is called away from his threshing, to bear that sword which was soon to distinguish itself as “the sword of the Lord and of Gideon.” But what was this sword of such renown? Three hundred men with trumpets and pitchers! Strange weapons of war against the host of Midian. But Midian ran before them. A cake of barley bread tumbled in and overturned the tents of the enemy. For it was the Lord Himself who was in action, and the treasure of Israel’s strength might therefore well lie in an earthen vessel (2 Cor. 4:7).

Giving up the World and the World Giving Us up

Our business is to act on God’s word, looking to Him for grace and strength as regards ourselves and others.

God Becoming a Man

“It is the greatest of all comforts to know that God did thus come down and become a man—reveal Himself to us so near us. I know God in knowing Christ, find Him grace and love, and cannot in any other way know Himself.”

God Brought In

In Eph. 4-5 God is in every way brought in. The new man is after God, &c., and the Holy Spirit is the Holy Spirit of God.

God in the Book of Job

It is to be specially noted in the book of Job that in its introduction and close (Chap. 1:1-6 being the history of the book) we have Jehovah. In all the book itself, including the speech of Elihu, we have Elohim, Shaddai, &c. Here we have the ways of God as God in the whole world; in the introduction and close, the interpretation of divine government—we are behind the scenes in revealed dealings. There are springs or sources of action in the beginning and close, in the book facts on which man reasons and from which he draws conclusions. We are above in the former, below in the latter. Compare Psa. 139:15, and Job 3:21.

God Incarnate

When the Word was made flesh, the unjealous testimony of the angels on His birth is glory to God in the highest, on earth peace, good pleasure in men. Man would not have Him; and the special testimony of the assembly—the church—was formed. But His delight was in that race. For the time it was not peace, but division. But even after the millennium “the tabernacle of God is with men,” where we have both the special relationship and the general blessing.

God Occupied With Us

To know that God in His grace is occupied with us is a wonderful check on will.

God's Blessed Object for Faith

“Now is the judgment of this world; now shall the prince of this world be cast out. And I, if I be lifted up from the earth will draw all unto me.” Judgment; this world; its prince, not the Lord Jesus, but Satan; his ejection. Then Another before us—One come down from heaven—the humbled Son of man, to be lifted up upon the cross—God’s blessed Object for faith, who shall draw all, not Jews only, but Gentiles also—to Himself. By this same One, God in all His holy nature glorified, and revealed as the everlasting Blesser of mankind!

God's Bringing in a New Power

When God brings in a new power, those who have clothed themselves with the old are the last to acknowledge the fresh way in which He is working. The Samaritan was the only one of the ten lepers who got to the source of the power, the divine person of the Son of God, even though the others got the blessing individually

God's Enemies

It is very afflicting and very humbling when we are obliged to confess that God’s enemies are right as against His people. The only comfort is that God is in the right and that in the end He cannot fail to accomplish His gracious promises.

God's Love and Christ's Love

Scripture is far more accurate than we think in its language. It is never said that God loved the church, nor that Christ loved the world. Christ’s love of the church is connected with relationship; God’s love of the world with His character

God's Love in Trials

“I beg you, dear—, allow not one thought that would question the fullness of the love of God to you to enter your heart. These trials come, and they find out the human sorrow; and with this, be sure of it, God can and does deeply sympathize. They find out the human will, and this God must break down.”

God's Nature: Holiness and Love

There are two great principles in God’s nature—holiness and love. One is the necessity of that nature, imperative in all that approach Him; the other in its energy. God is holy: God is—not loving—but, love. We make Him a judge by sin, for He is holy and has authority; but He is love, and none, has made Him such. If there be love anywhere else, it is of God; for God is love. This is the blessed, active energy of His being. In the exercise of this, He gathers to Himself, for the eternal blessedness of those who are gathered. Its display is in Christ, and Christ Himself is its great power and center. His counsels as to this are the glory of his grace: His applying them to sinners, and the means He employs for it, are the riches of His grace.
He who is goodness and light can dispel evil and darkness, according to the perfectness of divine wisdom, by the display of Himself, in such sort that no one but must see they are opposite to what He does display, if the mind has them before it; yet he who enjoys the goodness and light has no need to turn to their opposites to know light is light and goodness good.

God's Promises

God’s promises are precepts to Himself, binding on Him, and, as His to us, showing us what He is in Himself.

God's Sacrifice

God was manifest in the flesh to fulfill a work of self-sacrifice for me. A man’s sacrificing himself for me would present the highest human claim on a grateful heart; but God’s doing it (that new, lovely, yet infinite fact, capable of filling the whole moral world) puts all that world in a new condition.

God's Thoughts of the Blood of Christ, Not Ours

We must think not on our thoughts, but on God’s thoughts of the blood of Christ. The Israelites were assured that He would see the Lamb’s blood.

God's Ways Behind the Scenes

God’s ways are behind the scenes: but He moves all the scenes which He is behind. We have to learn this, and let Him work, and not think much of man’s busy movements: they will accomplish God’s—the rest of them all perish and disappear. We have only in peace to do His will.

God's Word

A child of God who sins is entitled to believe that he is forgiven on confession to his father. If he doubts, it is not humility or holiness, but distrust of God in Christ. Probably he is looking for some sign or token; but God will never give this, for it would encourage a soul to undervalue his word
The word is the expression outwardly of what God feels inwardly; and therefore as he puts the highest honor on it, so should we.

The Gospel of the Glory of Christ

In the law we must remember that we have only the shadow of good things to come. The great principles of the heavenly scenes are depicted, but not the change by the rending of the veil through which we enter boldly into the holiest, Christ being in glory at the right hand of God, and that through an eternal redemption. Also, the Son not being come, the Father’s name and relationship does not apply. For us the veil is rent: a very great difference; and we are children with a Father. We are accepted in the Beloved. God must raise Christ and place Him at His right hand in consideration of that which He had done in glorifying God as to sin and our sins; and we are cleared from our sins according to the perfectness of God, between Whom and Christ alone this work was accomplished. He having entered into God’s presence as man in virtue of that work, since He has carried in His blood, we also, objects of His work, are through it accepted as He is. We see the glory unveiled in His face, and approach boldly; because the glory in His face is the proof of redemption and the perfect blotting out of our sins. For He Who bore these has them not on Him in the glory.

Government of God

I think that the children of God have too much forgotten the government of God—day by day. This supposes salvation. But God passes over nothing, just because we are His children

Government of the World

In Israel’s case man had been tried on the ground of obedience to God, and had not been able to possess the blessing that should have resulted from it. Then God abandoned this direct government of the world (while still the sovereign Lord above), and casting off the elect people with the nations round them and His own throne there, subjected the world to one head, proving under this new trial whether man will own the God who gave him power to make those happy who are subjected to him when he can do what he will in the world. This began with Nebuchadnezzar, the head of the image—the system of imperial power. We know that man failed here too. But the Lord Christ will re-unite the two things in His person. He will be the one man to whom the whole dominion is given, and Israel, as well as the various nations with their kings, shall be re-established, each in his own land and his own heritage, as before the time of Nebuchadnezzar, with the exception of Edom, Damascus, Hazor, and Babylon herself (that is to say, those nations which occupy Israel’s territory; and Babylon which had absorbed and taken the place of all the others, and which must disappear by the judgment of God, to give them their place again).

Grace and Law

The difference between grace and law is that grace depends on what God is for me; law, on what I am for God. In the presence of God no one is proud. It is away from Him (as to the consciousness of it) that pride works.

Grace in Ephesians

Just a few thoughts in connection I would like to put before you. Grace has a wonderful place in Ephesians. It has in all the word of God, but in some places is more conspicuous than others; so here. When we think where this Epistle came from, how we see that all things serve His might! The dear apostle, taken from active service, and kept in prison two years and subsequently, at Rome—but what a loss to us if it had not been? And God over-ruled it thus for His glory! Taken aside while God made known to Him His will; and so we get the precious Epistles to the Hebrews, Philippians, Colossians, Ephesians. We can take them up full of comfort and blessing.
We are told in ch. 2:5 “By grace ye are saved.” It is blessed to turn to the unmerited favour of God to us, but before ver. 7 of chap. 1 it might not appear as if there was any sin connected with us; then we get redemption. To be holy and without blame before Him in love was absolutely true of Christ as a man down here below, and we have the same nature. There is nothing said about faults or failures, but we are taken back to eternity and God’s eternal plans. Then in ver. 7 we find we are sinners, and need a Saviour. Great as God’s glory is as Creator, He has greater glory as Redeemer. And the great thing is not that we should be sure we are going to heaven, great as that is, but greater still is it that God has put His hand on us, poor hell-deserving sinners as we are, and picked us up to give eternal joy to the heart of His beloved Son. That is worth having existence for! “To Him be glory in the assembly throughout all ages!” You and I form part of that assembly by His grace. He is going to get glory through it throughout all ages, world without end.
We found redemption in the Lord Jesus Christ, by blood and by power. Here it is through His blood. It is true we are all bought, and we are all redeemed. The difference ought to be a big joy to us. All the world is purchased—the unconverted as well as the saved. “Denying the Lord that bought them” we read. By being purchased, we change masters; every believer is purchased, and every sinner too. In redemption I change my status. Every believer is redeemed. Our liberty is to do His will, to serve God and to serve our brethren. The riches of His grace are found in this—we have redemption. Is there anything higher ? Yes, chap. 2 takes us on to the future. In ver. 7—the “exceeding riches of His grace” He will show, not for us to see, but for others to see in us. That’s His purpose. Is there anything higher than that? Yes, blessed be His Name! something higher still. If it had been said, “Taken us into favour in Christ,” it would be wonderful, but it is not put so, but “in the beloved.” There was One here of Whom the Father could say at His baptism, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased”; then on the Mount of Transfiguration, “This is my beloved Son, hear ye Him.” If God says in Him is found all His delight, we believe it, don’t we? Nothing counts but Christ. That thought has been a great blessing to me. God wants to let us know what is the very glory of Christ. He has accepted us in the Beloved, in Him in Whom is all His delight. You can never reach a higher point than that.
We are not adopted “children.” Children is a question of birth. A new born babe in the family of God, we see it at once in John 1:12. “As many as received him to them gave he power to become children of God.” You cannot make a mistake in this. John in his Gospel and Epistles reserves the word Son for One only, and that is the One Who occupies the bosom of the Father. The only exception is in Rev. 21. “Which were. born not of blood,” —not natural descent, “nor of the will of the flesh” —no; of God by His own will; “nor of the will of man” —what can he do? “but of God,” in the sovereignty of His love. That is how we occupy the place of children (1 Peter 1:2, 3; 2:2); this is eternal, and can never be set aside.
But with regard to “sonship.” Angels are sons, but never children. Angels are witnesses that God can make a glorious creature and keep him from falling; and they are learning now in us God’s various wisdom—not seeing it in the wonder of creation, but in you and me. But in the millennium they will learn that however blessed a creature may be, unless kept he is bound to fall. Sonship tells of privilege, of position. “Because ye are sons God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.” That is a privilege the saints of old could not know.
But our brother wanted to put the truth so that we live more to His glory, and I apprehend that the better knowledge we have of His love will help us and draw out our hearts to Him. We want to see it more, to rejoice in the worthiness of that blessed One. That is what we want, to rejoice more in Him. And I thought of 1 Sam. 17. —a heart acknowledging the worthiness of another. It is David—the beloved, and it often helps us to remember its sweet meaning— “the beloved one.” When Jesus is called David it is as the Beloved. And we know Him who emptied Himself and became obedient unto death, wherefore God hath highly exalted Him (Phil. 2). Oh, that blessed scripture! How it tells God’s estimate of the only absolutely perfect One! Every created intelligence shall bow the knee to that blessed One.
“In whom we have obtained an inheritance.” What is the inheritance? Everything in heaven and earth. He is the appointed Heir of all things—the whole universe. You and I are heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ. It is too vast; we cannot take it in. It all belonged to Him before He became man, but He has got it now as Man that you and I may share it with Him. Oh, what do we not owe Him!
But I was thinking of that scene in the valley of Elah, and I think we would all agree that it is God bringing before us Calvary-the great victory there showed forth by what took place there. The great champion a type of Satan, and David of Christ. The challenge is given, and no one can take it up. Yet there was One, the despised One, who was not called when Samuel came to anoint him, but they could not sit down till the Beloved came. The despised, misunderstood one—and there was One more misunderstood than anyone. But David goes out with his sling and stone; and Gen. 3 tells of a Deliverer-but a suffering One. I don’t want to go into all the details, but David slung the stone and it struck Goliath in the forehead and he was prostrate. What a change in the feelings of the trembling host! There was no sword in David’s hand, but I read in Hebrews “that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death.” So as the power of death was the devil’s own sword, so it was the giant’s own sword in the hand of the Beloved that cut off the giant’s head, and they were made more than conquerors; they had the spoil—the result of the victory—and David the praise! Then afterward I see David before Saul with the head in his hand; so typically I see Christ in resurrection (Col. 2:15). Well, there was one singled out who had seen all this (1 Sam. 18:1) a heart won! There was more than one victory won that day the heart of the king’s son was won— “knit with the soul of David, and he loved him as his own soul.” I am sure that is a voice to us, not recorded for nothing God intends us to learn by that. Ah, we want to be better acquainted with the cross of our blessed Savior— “Gazing with adoring eye, On Thy dying agony.” We don’t want to limit it to the Lord’s day morning, but every day let us feed on Him, Christ our Passover.
It is not only simply stated, but there were the results of that love. Jonathan stripped himself. It is very lovely to see. It was not a perfect love—David’s love was greater, but we won’t speak of his failures. The Holy Spirit records these details here, and in the light of the cross we listen to the truth, “Ye are not your own, ye are bought with a price.” I appeal to each one, Is there anything we ought to keep back from Him? It is all right to sing “the dearest object of my love” etc. —but there is so much—time, talents, wealth, everything. I am His bondman now. May God give us grace to surrender all to Himself. He is worthy. Amen.
J. A. T.

The Grand Blunder of Schleiermacher

The grand blunder of Schleiermacher, and the source of the worst infidelity now, is that he has taken the Holy Ghost’s work in us—very likely in himself for intuition, or specially collective Christian consciousness. He made divine teaching, in which case it is real, to be a title of human judgment on what the Holy Ghost gave. This is, I suspect, the key to the whole system, itself probably the fruit of Kantian philosophy and its offsets. The whole hangs on the Church’s not believing in the positive operation of the Holy Ghost. For all that Scherer and Bunsen, &c., pretend on their best side is simply Schleiermacher. Thus the Bible is Christian consciousness there: we judge it by Christian consciousness now. Hence it is, as Schérer says, the mere history of partial apprehension of truth; and of course, as every philosopher trusts himself, we judge scripture. That is, there is no revelation; for revelation must have authority or is false
Be it that the Church was before the new testament and the latter written for believers; yet the question is not thereby touched, whether it was not written by the power and direct inspiration of the Holy Ghost to give certainty and a divine record of those things in which they had been instructed. If the consciousness of believers was there, it was not to reproduce this but something else. It was to confirm and correct theirs by a divine statement of it, and give a sure record of that divinely-taught truth. Thus its being given to believers is, as far as it goes, a proof that it was not merely the expression of religious consciousness as then developed.

The Great Question

The great question of the day is, whether God is love, or love is God.


The reading seems by no means certainly ἐν τῷ ναῷ though supported by the main body of uncials and cursives, Itala, Vulg. Syrr. &c.; but εἰς τὸν ναόν has the grave testimony of à, B, L, a few good cursives and versions, with some of the early Greek fathers. If this last be not a change to evade the difficulty, it would less than the former imply that Judas entered the house or sanctuary. He may have only thrown the money into it. But if he himself went in, does it teach us more than the desperation of the betrayer, now feeling the bitterest remorse as he thought of his condemned master, with the surest forebodings of divine wrath? In such a state one can understand Satan pushing a man blindly to dare aught else, conscious that the worst had been done irreparably. Possibly no doubt the priests may have connived at the entrance of the chief instrument of their wickedness where he ought not; but beyond controversy we see elsewhere (John 19:28), how punctilious in ceremonials were those that took Jesus. I incline to think therefore that the point is the recklessness of one impelled by Satan, now that his part was over, with a maddened conscience, rather than the fruit of Judas’ intimacy with the plotting priests.

Grieve Not the Holy Spirit of God

“Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God.” when we taste the sweetness of such communion, how careful should we be! A few minutes’, yea, but one minute’s, allowance of vanity, worldliness, &c., how it will incapacitate for such enjoyment!

The Ground of Settled Peace

The ground of settled peace, in the midst of a world of sin and sorrow, is to assure my soul that God is true when He says, that He so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life,

Guided by God's Eye

The pillar of cloud guided Israel; but we are not guided by providence. Yet, blessed be God for it, we surely are guided of Him; and we know there is not a single thing He allows to happen to us, but what shall prove to be one of the “all things” for our good, though there may be much sorrow and trial mixed up with it, which may be needed to break us down. We often are guided by providence in a great many ways; but then it is a proof we are not guided by the knowledge of His will. If I discern God’s will, I shall not be guided by providence, which is at best only being “held by bit and bridle.” It is better to be guided by God’s eye. It is a great mercy, however, if I have not the spiritual one, to be even thus held in. If I am going off by a certain train; and get too late, so that I cannot go, this is providence which tells me, I am not to go. Christ never found His guidance by providence; nor the Apostle Paul in general, except when he went to Rome. Then he went as a prisoner; which was very different from being warned by the Spirit of Jesus not to go into Bithynia. “Guide me with Thine eye,” is our privilege.

Harmonies of the Gospels

I object totally to all harmonies of the gospels, as such; because they are the confusion of accounts which are each written with a distinct divine object. The facts are put together by the Holy Ghost with an evident purpose, each gospel presenting both Christ and the ways of God in a different light. To throw them all together is to destroy this purpose, and obscure the intelligence of the gospels.

Having a Place in the Heart of the Lord

Little as I am, I have a place in the heart of the Lord; and His mind is, that I should walk in circumstances here as one who has a place in His heart.
G. V. W.

Having God As Our Father

A Christian is one who has God as his Father in heaven. The anxiety that dreads an evil thing on the morrow is nothing but unbelief.
When the morrow comes, the evil may not be there: if it comes, God will be there too. He may allow us to taste what it is to indulge our own wills: but if our souls are subject to Him, how often the dreaded evil never appears. When the heart bows to the will of God about some sorrow that we dread, how often the sorrow is taken away, and the Lord meets us with unexpected kindness and goodness.
He is able to make even the sorrow to be all blessing. Whatever be His will, it is good. “Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.”

Having Upon the Heart the Sufferings of the Church

If I have upon my heart the sufferings of the church, little or much, I suffer with Christ. It is a little “filling up of the sufferings of Christ.” oh may we lay it to heart and bear as much of the burden as ever we can, and go on with him through the ups and downs of the present time! His heart continues with us; may ours continue with him. When the disciples should have watched with him, they slept; and when they were awake, they ran away. He would give it to us to remain with him abidingly and he has given it us.

He Is Love Itself

He was the loneliest Man, but the most accessible Man, because He was love itself. He does not set Himself apart in the wilderness, but in heaven, and we are with Him there; every affection and moral feeling of my heart is linked up with Him who is on the throne of God.
J. N. D.

He That Hath Part in the First Resurrection

“Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.”

The Heart Occupied With the Lord

It is an easy thing to set sail and get fairly out into the ocean; but when many days have passed and no land is in sight, one is apt to weary. If the heart is not fully occupied with the Lord, something is taken on board to fill up the void

The Heavens Opened

When the heavens opened in Matt. 3, Christ was the object of God the Father; when they were seen opened in Acts 7, He in heaven was the object to the saint on earth, and so is it now.


The epistle to the Hebrews puts the saint (and strictly the Jewish remnant) in perfect present connection with heavenly things and places, but connects them with the whole course of previous revelations, and also with the coming dispensation.

Hebrews 1 and 2

Heb. 1; 2 Before presenting Christ in service founded on His person, chapter 1 not simply gives the natures to which the respective services belonged, but presents His personal glory and place—what He is, not what He does for others. In order to this last, it states His divine and human nature; but before this, as I said, His place. God now spoke (ἐν υἱῷ) in [the person of the] Son. He is at the beginning of all creature existence as Creator, at the head of it as Heir of all things. Then, as between God and man, He reveals God, the brightness of His glory and express image of His being. He continuously upholds all things; and this, in a divine way, gives man his place with God. By Himself He purged our sins and sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in the heavens—His own place, and His mediatorial place. It resembles Col. 1 in each part.
In chapter 2 we have Psa. 8 fulfilled as to the glorifying Christ, but not having all things put under His feet; but this the fruit of sufferings and death, so that as to title through righteousness God could bring sons to glory, and the power of Satan over them was destroyed. And while in the place of glorified Priest on high, where He has entitled us to enter, and where we as worshippers belong, He has passed through all the sorrows and temptations of the way so as to be perfectly suited in grace to our trials in the same path.

Hebrews 10

Heb. 10—Here we see sin and atonement as estimated by God’s thoughts and dealing. He before all, in His counsels (the volume of the book), dealt with sin in the way of His will. Christ offers Himself to come and do it. Sin is judged, thought of as God sees and thinks of it and in reference to himself. Such too is the measure of his love. And we are brought so to see it as regards ourselves. Hence the full peace and assurance we have. Atonement gets its value, and so does God’s love, and sin withal.

Hebrews 3

The exhortations in Heb. 3 are to preserve the Christian in a confidence which he has, and to persevere, not to tranquillize doubts and fears. The use of the epistle to sanction such doubts is of the enemy. But though the knowledge of grace alone can set free from fears, it is very important practically to maintain a good conscience


You will never find a heretic who is a sincere man. A heretic is a man who teaches an error as an affair of sect. If two parties are made in the church without quitting it, there is schism, as we see generally at Corinth. Heresy in scripture is a party without.

Hindrance to Obedience

What is it hinders Christians from obeying? At bottom, the world.

History and Doctrine of the Bible

The history of the Bible is the history of original sin: the doctrine of the Bible is the doctrine of God’s putting it away forever.

The Holy Ghost

The Holy Ghost suggests thoughts, supplies courage, and gives wisdom as to what is to be done; and this is power the Holy Ghost suggests thoughts, supplies courage, and gives wisdom as to what is to be done; and this is power.

The Holy Spirit

How sweet to know that the Holy Spirit who gives and directs the joy of our hearts in Christ, making us bid the Bridegroom “Come” (Rev. 22:17) takes equal part in our present griefs and travail of spirit! If we do not know what to ask for, we do know that all things work together for good, as the apostle proves triumphantly to the end of Rom. 8. Meanwhile the Holy Spirit identifies Himself in grace with our weakness and suffering, so as to give it a divine voice to God, who answers accordingly.

Hooker's Doctrine

When I weigh Hooker’s doctrine with the word of God, I am not at a loss to judge what are the views of law absolute, and others to which I am invited to look, in contrast with the plain declarations of scripture. Hooker uses them to vindicate those things in the English establishment, for which there is no warrant in scripture. But they equally warrant, though he did not intend it, Popery and modern Rationalism: one contending that scripture does not suffice; the other contending that the Christian conscience has its light independent of scripture, just as scripture does, applying it then to the judgment of statements in scripture, and of course, soon to the rejection of all that reason does not like. Hooker lays full ground for it by insisting that scripture does not prove itself (in which he wholly departs from the first reformers). As regards Popery, Hooker distinctly asserts, not that scripture suffices—that he denies in terms, but—that, as we have reason and scripture, these are sufficient, and tradition therefore is not needed. It is a pity that the national establishment should be founded on such principles. I recognize, not right reason, but conscience; I recognize all use of gifts of ministry, and parental care according to God; but the doctrine of Hooker is low and dangerous.

Hooker's Doctrine

Hooker takes up these forms of law, first, a rule imposed by authority, alone held to be such by some, which he extends to any rule by which actions are framed. I have no objection. The first only is properly law, and the difference is all-important; but the second is often in a secondary sense so-called, as the law of faith, the law of the spirit of life, so in natural things, the law of gravity; but scripture, speaking of law as such, uses it in the former sense. The fact of an imposed rule (as contrasted with the voluntary actions of nature, uniform, because it is such), is capital. But to return a moment to Hooker. He classes under the general idea of law, nature’s laws, what angels observe, the law of reason (he never speaks of conscience, which is by no means immaterial), Divine law known but by special revelation, human law, supposed conformed to one of the last two. The first two he calls law eternal. God may overrule, he alleges, the law imposed on the creature—nature’s law, according to the law which Himself hath proposed eternally to keep. still this eternal and immutable. I quote this to show that as to this highest law, however overruling power may operate, God is, though by His own act imposing it on Himself, immutably bound. Now this is surely unsound. God will not act contrary to His nature, for then he would not be Himself, which is impossible; but it is not an imposed law, or freedom, grace, miracle, sovereign goodness are all taken away from God. The reader must not think this metaphysical. I am speaking of what I have been referred to as setting me right. And we shall soon see it is at the root of the whole matter.

Hope an Inheritance

The hope in Peter, and indeed in Colossians, though not connected with so high a dispensational place, yet is itself as an inheritance a higher hope, not the inheritance of all things, which, though in a certain sense general since it may continue (Rev. 21:7, Heb. 2), yet is properly the kingdom inheritance of the Son of man, and at any rate of what is below us, but the eternal blessedness itself in the heavenly state with God.

The Hope of Righteousness

The hope of righteousness is not the hope of getting righteousness, but the hope of glory which belongs to righteousness. God says, You are My children; I have brought you to Myself, and you are going to hear about the glory of Christ, and are joint heirs with Him in it. When I think of the apostles to whom God revealed such things as these, I think how, with such power of God in them, they could go safely. But thus laden with Christ, they could go safely and steadily through the world; they were fully ballasted with Christ.
Have Christ in yourself. Christ everything to us enlarges the Christ in us, and then we can go steadily along. If I have a full Christ in myself, then I can look safely out. If I have Christ as the center of glory in my heart, I can look out and see the glory all around.
J. N. D.

The House and the Body

In Eph. 4:3-6, though the subject is enlarged and the character of the unities defined, yet there is clear reference to the end of Eph. 2—the house as well as the body. God is not, that I am aware, said to build the house. “Ye, coming as living stones, are built up.” so “ye are builded together.”

How We Should Act

When we give up the world, we despise it, but if we go on following Jesus, the world despises us, and then comes the trial. Paul, however, could say, “Even to this present hour we both hunger and thirst, and are naked, and have no certain dwelling-place.”


If we were perfectly humble, we should not need humbling; but we do, all of us, even Paul who had a thorn in the flesh to keep it down.


The divine attributes have been made the basis of idolatry. Men embodied the attributes and left God out. So scripture history was perverted, as the ark of Noah and his three sons; or earlier still, the serpent, woman, and tree; in nature, the sun, moon, and stars—in short, the creature, generally, served more than the Creator.

If and Not If

When the Christian is viewed as in Christ, there is no “if:” we are in Him. When he is viewed as a pilgrim here, he is on the road to actual glory and has to reach the goal: here “if” comes in, and danger, and the need of being kept. But then we have the fullest assurance that we shall be kept and shall never perish but be confirmed to the end, and the good work completed. Thus dependence on God is maintained to the end, and confidence in His faithfulness. J.N.D.

If They Only Knew

It has been said of some that they wrought, of others that they wrote or spoke better than they knew. Doubtless even Abraham only vaguely entered into the far-reaching, mysterious import of the words with which he calmed the anxiety of Isaac with regard to a sacrificial lamb. “God will provide Himself a lamb for a burnt offering” (Genesis 22:8).
How these words have echoed down the ages, and what a striking exemplification we have here of the admirable saying of Augustine that the Old Testament enfolds what the New unfolds! So do nicely adjusted mirrors with their opposing beams materially enhance each other’s radiance.
Next, we may note the remarkable way in which the Patriarch enters into God’s side of the question. “God will provide himself a lamb.” So Simeon, “Mine eyes have seen thy salvation.” Sometimes we think too exclusively of our salvation, though doubtless the sinner must begin with the sin-offering. But God’s portion, so to speak, must come first, as we learn in the opening of Leviticus. And in beautiful accord are these words of Abraham.
R. B.

Improvement of Christendom or Calling of a Remnant?

Is the maintenance and improvement of Christendom God’s way? or is He calling a remnant to purge themselves from the vessels to dishonor, as well as to personal purity?

In Christ and Christ in Me

The measure of my privilege is that I am in Christ; the measure of my responsibility is that Christ is in me.

In the Spirit

John “was in the spirit on the Lord’s day.” it is his place and privilege as a Christian that is spoken of, not the prophetic period. On the resurrection-day, on which Christians meet, the apostle, removed from their society, enjoyed the special elevating power of the Holy Spirit, though alone; and is thus and then used of God, allowed. To be banished for the purpose, for what could not ordinarily have been communicated to the church for its edification.

Inasmuch as Ye Did it Unto Me

“And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and all perception; that ye may judge of and approve the things that are more excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offense unto [the) day of Christ.” “Inasmuch as ye did it unto Me!” All will come out in that day, and the secrets of our hearts be manifested.

Inspiration of Scripture

“Some inspired communications have perished,” i.e., are not in existence; e.g., the word of the Lord by Jonah the prophet of Gath-Hepher concerning the restoring of the coasts of Israel, from the entering of Hamath unto the sea of the plain (2 Kings 14:25); the prophecy of Urijah the son of Shemaiah of Kirjath-Jearim, against Jerusalem and the land of Judah (Jer. 26:20); the prophecies of Micaiah the son of Imlah, against Ahab, which led to the king’s statement— “he never prophesied good unto me, but always evil.” (2 Chron. 18:7.) It is a mistake to suppose that every inspired communication of the spirit of God to man is contained in the Bible. All that was needful for us to know and have, we possess; but not all that others, at different times, had communicated to them by the prophets. Where are the visions of Iddo the seer, against jeroboam the son of Nebat, among which some of the acts of Solomon, not mentioned in chronicles (“the rest of the acts”), were recorded? C. E. S
[Is not “the perpetual miracle in order to preserve the scriptures” a mistake? A miracle absolutely accomplishes by divine power. It is fully admitted that God works providentially to the end in view; but this is a very different statement and leaves room for the responsibility of man in his care of and reverence for the scriptures, text or translation, exposition or study; and alas! man fails here as everywhere; but God does not, and suffices for every need of His children and work. It is not meant either that any book in the Hebrew Scriptures or in the Greek New Testament is not inspired, or that any book is now lost which ever formed a part of scripture, which consists not only of inspired communications, but of those given and designed to be the permanent standard of divine truth. Even as to this the larger part of Christendom has proved faithless, not by rejecting real scripture, but by accrediting as such the Apocryphal Greek books of the Old Testament.—En. B. T.]

The Inspired History

Inspired history is true history, and gives the evil as well as the good. A mere panegyrical history would prove itself not inspired, like the legends of the saints or a human biography. As to prophecy, it is, I may say, constant invective against evil. That the patience of God went on rising up early and sending prophets, till there was no remedy, unbelief casts in God’s teeth. I adore Him for it, as for all His goodness.

Introduction of the Millennium

The instrument of introducing the millennium is not the diffusion of the truth, but the sword proceeding out of Christ’s mouth, sitting on a triumphal horse, wherewith He could smite the nations. It is treading the vintage of God’s wrath. It is an invitation to all fowls to feast on the sacrifice the Lord God Almighty will make of the great and their followers, and a time of judgments in the earth when the world’s inhabitants learn righteousness.

Is the Flesh Really Gone?

If they hold this, then indeed it is a mischievous error. I should not have to “reckon,” were I really dead; and the context makes it clear. “Reckon” (Rom. 6:11) is the estimate I form according to faith of my condition and standing, the estimate of my faith, not a statement as to the state I am in; and this is equally true as to “alive.” But the statement here is not that I have life, but that I so account of myself. But when he says, “Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body that ye should obey it,” it is a plain testimony that it is not gone, or it would be a very poor conclusion. Besides are other passages, as that “the flesh lusteth against the Spirit,” and that, “if we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves.” J. N.D.


Isaiah is convicted, cleansed, given a ready devoted serving heart, and finds a tenderly sympathizing heart—all in the divine presence. It is as to his nature that he is convicted—what he has in common with others: this is true conviction. In devotedness he yields himself without knowing what it may cost him. (Isa. 6)

Isaiah 53:11

It may be well to learn that Isa. 53:11 stands faultily in the A. V. The R. V. rightly gives “and (not ‘for’) He shall bear their iniquities.” The error here was due to “justify” in the preceding clause, which means really as in Dan. 12., “instruct in righteousness” —Christ’s service, and atoning death. Here the R. V. is still wrong.

Israel of God - Gentile Believers

“Israel of God” (Gal. 6:16) seems to be used here, not as a general phrase for every saint, but for the believing ones in Israel—those Jews who had repudiated their own works and found shelter only in Christ Jesus. Two parties are spoken of, and not one only. “As many as walk according to this rule,” are rather the Gentile believers; and the “Israel of God” are the Jewish saints, not the mere literal Israel, but “the Israel of God”; the Israelites indeed, whom grace made willing to receive the Savior. W. K.


Jehovah is always His name in Israel, and that of government, save in a few cases where Adonai (Lord is the proper appellative use of it) is employed. But it is to be noticed that Jehovah is used in Proverbs, because it is authoritatively instructive in known relationship; never in Ecclesiastes, where it is God in contrast with man having his own experience as such on earth. “God” abstractedly is only once used in Proverbs (xxxv. 2). We have “her God” in chapter 2:17.

Jehovah Jealous and an Avenger

This is ever true, and of immense importance. God never holds the guilty for innocent. It is contrary to His nature, and would not be the truth. He may put away the sin, and receive the sinner cleansed; but He cannot act as if it did not exist when it does, nor be indifferent to it while He remains Himself He may chastise for good, and show government (that is, deal with sin in this respect); or He may have it entirely put away and blotted out, according to the exigencies of His own nature and glory, which is salvation for us. And both are true. But He cannot leave sin anywhere as not existing or indifferent. His coming vengeance will be the world’s deliverance from the oppressive misery of the enemy’s yoke and of human lusts; that it may flourish under the peaceful eye of its Deliverer. J.N.D.


The son of a strange woman, Jephthah, had been disclaimed by his brethren in Israel, and cast out among the Gentiles. But this is the one whom the Lord chooses to be Israel’s savior in the day of their trespass and trouble. But where is Israel’s honor now? Where is the glory and worth of their own system, when he, whom his brethren despised and cast out as a base thing, is their only hope in their calamity? The honor was not theirs, nor was the strength of their own system their help and defense now. The Spirit of God in sovereign grace to Israel comes upon Jephthah. The battle was the Lord’s. Israel had destroyed himself; but in God was his help.

Jesus in the Days of His Flesh

There is no “loitering” in the path of the Blessed One through the world; no seeking, as we may seek, for ease. Life with Him is taken up with the untiring activities of love. He lives not for Himself. God and man have all His thoughts and His service. Does He seek for solitude? It is to be alone with His Father. Does He seek for society? It is to be about His Father’s business. By night or day He is always the same—on the Mount of Olives praying, in the temple teaching, in the midst of sorrow comforting, where sickness is healing: every act declares Him to be the One who lives for others. He has a joy in God man cannot understand, a care for man that only God could show. Never do we find Him acting for Himself. If hungry in the wilderness, He works no miracle to supply His own need; if others are hungering around Him, the compassion of His heart flows forth, and He feeds them by thousands.

Jesus Only

Exceedingly blessed is the grace that the Lord is come, the power of God within the sphere of human misery, which extreme as it may be does but make that power evident. If I look around as a man, I am lost. I cannot unriddle the history of the world: abominations in Christendom committed in the name of the Lord; Himself rejected by His people Israel, and crucified by those Gentiles to whom God had entrusted the government of the world, Mahometanism, heathenism. What kind of a God have you, says the reasoning heart, when it is such a world? But in the gospel I see the Lord came down into all the wretchedness, sickness, sin; and my heart is drawn away from pleasure and sorrow to Him. How beautiful to see heart after heart brought around this One, the only true center, soon to be the risen Head of the new creation, Himself the object drawing out feelings and affections of which He alone is worthy—Him who by His excellency gives excellency, and by His gracious thoughts toward us produces and draws out gracious thoughts in us. Next, our hearts are fixed just so far as we have an object, fixed according to God when we have Christ Himself before us. How can I love if I have nothing to love? A man is what he feels and likes and thinks. If my soul lives and feeds on that which is most excellent, Christ the bread of GOD, Christ becomes in a practical sense formed in the heart. In Him, the man Christ Jesus, God has had all His delight, and the display of it too. J. N. D.


In Job we have man put to the test—man renewed by grace, upright in his ways—to show whether he can stand before God in presence of the power of evil, whether he can be righteous in his own person before God; and, on the other hand, God’s dealings by which He searches the heart and gives it the consciousness of its true state before Him. It is God that sets the case of Job before Satan who disappears from the scene.

Job 33 and 36

Job 33 differs from chapter 36. The former speaks of God’s ways with man, the latter of His ways with the righteous. Hence it does not follow from the first that man is converted: only God deals with him. If he hears, it is well, he gets the blessing. It is God—God dealing with man who owns He is and so breaking his pride: then if he hears the word, he gets the blessing.
In the latter chapter God is dealing with the righteous. He withdraws not His eyes from them: it is not only that He deals with them. Hence He has a specific object. He shows them their own ways, opens their ear, commands them to return, if they obey, and so on. This is a different and specific action. With hypocrites it is another thing. The general government of God is to be considered in the first case. (See ver. 29, 30.)

Joel 2

We find in Joel 2 an instance of that which is usual in prophetic teaching—some event which should act on the conscience of the people, taken up by the Spirit of prophecy, no doubt to awaken their conscience at the very time of the event, but far more with the purpose of using it as a picture of some event in the last days of much greater moment. The judgment of God, already deserved by the people and suspended by His long suffering over their heads, awaits the hour in which this long suffering will have no more effect, will become thenceforward useless, and in which the counsels of His wisdom shall have arrived at their development. The Spirit of God warns the people of this judgment; but He describes for future days the instruments of God’s vengeance when He shall actually execute the judgment. Thus chapter 1 of Joel takes up the ravages of these insects, which, it seems, had caused a frightful scarcity, to act on the consciences of the people at the time of the prophecy; but from the beginning of chapter 2 the prophecy throws itself into the future, and introduces a people, who in their turn will ravage the land of Israel in the last days.

Joel 2:28-29

Joel 2:28, 29, is a short independent prophecy, and so are the verses from 30 to the end of the chapter. Verses 28, 29, promise the outpouring of the Holy Spirit consequent on the repentance of the nation, which also accompanied its temporal blessings. The repentance is the point of departure for both. So the partial fulfillment of Acts 2 was on those who repented, though the temporal blessings could not come on the nation. Thus, though there was that which was analogous in the destruction of Jerusalem already accomplished, signs and wonders will come before the great and notable day yet to come. The blood of the new covenant was shed, and all things ready; but the nation would not repent, and could not get the blessing. The remnant get the spiritual part of it with “all flesh;” the Jews will all when they say, “Blessed is he that cometh in the name of Jehovah.” The order in the last day will be repentance, deliverance by the day of Jehovah, temporal blessings, the Holy Ghost, before the day of Jehovah signs taking place. This last stands, therefore, necessarily apart, as the calling on the name of Jehovah of course precedes the deliverance.

Joel 2:30

Joel 2:30 is a new sentence connected with the end of verse 31. Thus the pouring out of the Spirit on all flesh, in its literal and last accomplishment would be after Jehovah had settled His people in the land: the signs will be before. Its accomplishment consequent upon the reception of the remnant would be on their partaking of the salvation as a sign of favor and blessing.

John 1:28

John 1:28. The ground of God’s first relationship with man was innocence; the next was sin, in respect of which He has developed what He is and glorified Himself in grace and divine righteousness. Hence this leads to what is heavenly, because it displays as He is there. In the new heavens and earth His relationship will not be as to innocence, nor, of course, sin, but righteousness. This is through Christ the Second Adam. It is secured in righteousness, which is past evil and all its power, but in those who have the divine quality of the knowledge of good and evil. This it is that is marked in the words, “Behold the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world.” Without that, God could not have been in relationship with it on the ground of righteousness.

John 13

John 13—scripture calls God light, and it calls Him love. He is not holiness, for that is relative; he is not righteousness, though he be holy and righteous. To be holy there must be a knowledge of good and evil; and so of righteousness. Evil cannot be in their God; but perfect purity, and that which manifests all, He is, and the perfect activity of goodness (that is, love); and so scripture speaks. And this makes the cross so glorious as the way: God meets sin there. O what a wondrous meeting in perfect love, yet in perfect righteousness and holiness; yea, exalting them by it. Hence he says, “now is the Son of man glorified [for it was glorious for a man to do it], and God is glorified in him. If God is glorified in him, God shall also glorify Him in Himself, and shall straightway glorify Him” —shall not wait for the outward display in the coming kingdom, but shall glorify Him in Himself, who was glorified is Him. This is man’s place in hope and spiritual nature and affections now—hence not of the world, as Christ (who came from heaven, and as a divine person was in heaven) was not of the world. This nature may display itself in a thousand exercises and relationships here, as it did in Christ—in us mixed with failures, alas! for which there is provision in him—but the proper association of our nature and standing as Christians is with him in heaven. Hence Jesus, knowing that the father had given all things into his hand, and that he came from God and went to God, in presence of all he was, and was going to, and in presence of treachery and failure, takes the place of a servant to wash his disciples’ feet that they might have a part with him. He could not stay with them in this polluted earth. Hence, too, when peter would have other than his feet washed—his need through defilement from daily walk, the Lord says, “he that is washed (i.e., really partaker of this divine nature, for they were, save Judas, clean through the word spoken) needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit.” what a picture of grace! What a witness of our portion as part with him! And while giving the assurance that the truth of the divine nature is there (for here he speaks of water, not of blood), how it gives us morally elevating confidence in intercourse with God, and yet allows not the smallest daily stain! Yet grace is learned in it. If this lovely and elevated picture of the Lord’s grace is closely examined, it will be seen that it comes after his earthly claims are witnessed and closed. As son of God, he raises Lazarus. As son of David, he rides into Jerusalem. When the Greeks come up, he says, “the hour is come that the son of man should be glorified,” but then adds that he must fall into the ground as a corn of wheat and die. In chapter 13 He shows how we have part with him when he could not with us. But note this well: if we are to be really elevated, it is taking us in spirit out of this world. He gave himself for our sins, to deliver us from this present world


Joshua is Christ as leading by the Spirit. So he is seen everywhere. Thus he seeks victory; he will attack and overcome. Even supposing Amalek sought to slay the weak ones, this does not alter its character, but only gave the occasion for the exercise of this energy. Compare Ex. 17

Judgment Proving State

Our judgments prove our own state as much and more than that of which we judge. They may be just, or unjust; they may be just and not charitable, or the true righteousness of God and zeal for Him in contrast with false charity.


The truth is that the judgment-seat is what most brings out our assurance before God; for as He is, so are we in this world; and it is when Christ shall appear, we shall be like him.


Up to the end of Rom. 4 justification goes no farther than remission. There are in this epistle four things which justify: God, grace, blood, and faith; but up to that the positive side of justification is still wanting.

Justification: Washed and Accepted

As to justification, there is a point I must remark. Two things unite in it: first, there is the blood which has washed us from our sins; and this is perhaps properly called justification. But in fact we may add to it our acceptance in the beloved. If any one doeth righteousness, he is righteous, as He (Christ) is righteous. For doing righteousness is what flows from the life of Christ in us; but inasmuch as we live of this life by the Holy Spirit, we are united to Christ, and we enjoy His righteousness before God, accepted in the Beloved. Of this, the resurrection is the pivot; for it is the proof of justification, and it introduces Christ in the power of this eternal life (in which we share) into the presence of God. It is around the person of Christ, viewed as risen, that all the truths found in the word turn. The union of the Church to Him is its complement. The resurrection leaves all that could condemn us behind it in the tomb and introduces the Lord into the new world of which He is the perfection, the Head and the glory. Now we are one with him.

Latitudinarian Unity

Latitudinarian unity it may be painful and trying to keep aloof from; it has an amiable form in general, is in a measure respectable in the religious world, tries nobody’s conscience, and allows of everybody’s will. It is the more difficult to be decided about, because it is often connected with a true desire of good, and is associated with amiable nature. And it seems rigid, and narrow, and sectarianism to decline so to walk. But the saint, when he has the light of God, must walk clearly in that. God will vindicate His ways in due time. Love to every saint is a clear duty; walking in their ways is not. And he that gathers not with Christ scatters.
J. N. D.

Law and Man's Ruin

The acquirement of a position by conduct is a fallen state, and the principle of law. If a being is created in a given state, he ought to live up to that state, to keep it. Now man has lost it and is out of relationship with God, he is ruined on the ground of responsibility already. The law, which proposes life to him by his doing, is the means of convincing him of sin. When Christ is presented, man is free to receive Him, and life is in Christ for him; but his actual state is proved by his seeing no beauty in Him to desire Him.

Law and Redemption

Man was not treated as a sinful people when put to the test of the law, but as being under trial; and redemption is here wholly and absolutely out of place. The question was, Could righteousness be by law as a means of title to life? It was shown it could not. God does not put man on his trial by redemption, but saves him (because he has failed in it) by faith, which is just the opposite of law.

Law Not the Measure of God's Acting in Grace

Law may be the perfect rule of man’s duty toward God and his neighbor: that, no doubt, Christ fulfilled. But it is not the measure of God’s actings in grace toward man, and that Christ displayed too; and yet did so in obedience to His father. But no law of loving God as the responsibility of the creature to God can measure Christ’s self-sacrifice for us, nor, consequently, the path in which we are called upon to follow Him.

Law Taken in Positive Action

The law taken in its positive action would be for a child of Adam, but in an unfallen state.

Learning His Love in Sorrow

If I trust to my own strength in the hour of temptation, I break down: but if I have learned, through grace, to cast myself on Christ, I find all in Him to help me, and to go through the temptation unscathed. I must learn the lesson. If I learn it with the Lord, I am spared the sifting; but if not, I must be sifted. If not in intercourse with the Lord, it must be with Satan. “Nevertheless,” saith the Lord, “I have prayed for thee that thy faith fail not.” It is blessed to believe that God loves us, notwithstanding all our failure. It is worth (not any sin but) any sorrow to learn this.

A Lesson From Saul

From Saul as to overcoming. He vanquished the Ammonites; but the Philistines whom he was raised up to overcome, he never slid. If people do not discharge the duty given them, it matters little how much else they do.

Let Brotherly Love Continue

The wear and tear of circumstances makes this often a matter of difficulty. The very closeness of relationship among the saints causes it to be so. There is only continuance in what is of God.

Let Us Not Seek

Let us not seek to weaken the force of a single scripture, if it press us ever so hard. The foundations of our faith are so sure that we may boldly, unhesitatingly deny the suggestions of the enemy: and God will show us, in due time, its meaning, if for His glory. The security of the soul depends much on this, whether it condemn oneself, or seem to destroy one’s doctrine, or show one to have fallen into a pitfall; still to hold to it as the truth. If the word of God be avoided, all that gives, and secures the soul in, the knowledge of God and Jesus Christ, which is life eternal, is gone forever; while, on the other hand, holding to this, however tried, God will reveal mercy to oneself, correct or purge one’s doctrine, or so fill up the measure of it as to clear one’s mind from the dread of that which Satan would use to distract or disturb the soul.

Liberty, Joy, Blessing, and Clearness of the Truth

No man can ever get into the liberty, joy, blessing, and clearness of the truth, unless he is acting on what he knows.

Life and Death

John 11—Jesus as the God of life enters the house of death. He had done so ever since sin had worked. (See Gen. 3; 6:18, Ex. 12, Josh. 2) Faith has thus always talked of life in the midst of death, as we see in the same chapters. Nature is not equal to this: witness the disciples Thomas, Martha, Mary, and her friends in this chapter. So the experience of all our hearts, and even of our religion.
Peter talked of life in Matt. 16, and Jesus said, Flesh and blood had not given him that power, which all in this chapter proves. The Rock-life (Matt. 16:18.) is the victorious, infallible life of the Son; and He speaks of it here. (Ver. 25, 26.) It is such life the Son communicates: death touches it not.

Lift up, Bear, Offer to

Αἴρω is to lift up or take away—never to bear on oneself. Ἀναφέρω is to bear, but as a sacrifice on the altar (or spiritually), for which ὐποφέρω is never used. Προσφέρω is to offer to, as in Heb. 9:14


IT was the saying of the famous Joshua Scaliger that “he who has lived to throw light on a single passage of scripture has not lived in vain.” Much more becoming and truly blessed is his place who has no pretension to throw light on scripture, but to remove the obstructions that the light divine in it may freely shine. For scripture as a whole is God’s testimony to Christ, the True Light. The same faith that appreciates Him denies that real light can be had through any saint or means on earth; and those who are made light in Him would be the last to claim it as of themselves. “In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not.”

Living on Grace

“God never gave you grace that you might live upon it, but grace that you might live upon Christ.”

Living to Please Him

We need intense grace not only to be ecclesiastically right and sound in doctrine, which is possible with worldliness; but we need also to remember that word— “whoso is minded to be the friend of the world, is constituted the enemy of God,” and we so forget the undying love of Him who died for us, and for us lives again. If all goes, there is one object worth living for, and one ambition worth having—to be pleasing to Him: this abides. Is not what Peter says a rest— “That God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion forever and ever”? And then the only one who ought to be glorified, so links up our blessing with His glory.
W. N. T.

The Lord Condescending in Grace

As a person the Son emptied Himself; He could not have done so save as God. A creature who leaves his first estate sins therein. The sovereign Lord condescends in grace; in Him it is love.

Love and Purpose in God's Revelations

There must be love and purpose in God’s revelations and in revelations to man, that love and that purpose must refer to man, while it reveals God; and this the first of Genesis does admirably. It seems to me, as, indeed, I do not doubt it is, perfect in this respect. And the question between us and the rationalist is, not whether the scripture gives scientific knowledge (most surely it does not), but whether its contents are God’s thoughts or man’s thoughts of the subjects it treats of. It does give us man’s thoughts when man stands responsible (and that, of course, it must do to have a full moral picture); but God’s view and thoughts of all this scene, with the perfection of man in Christ, but a second man. In the case before us, in this most simple account, we have all the needed phenomena, on which man speculated, ascribed to the right source, and put in their place, and all man’s thoughts met. Elsewhere we have man’s thoughts, schemes of emanations, personifications, and theories. One little chapter answers them all divinely.

Love for God's Work

In times of difficulty faith does not show itself in the magnificence of the result, but in love for God’s work, however little it may be, and in the perseverance with which it is carried on through all the difficulties belonging to this state of weakness.

Love in 1 Corinthians 13

1 Cor. 13—Here love is spoken of only in its working in or toward man, though its spring be the divine nature, love itself in us, which has its supreme joy in God Himself. But here it is as in precept for its manifestation in man’s ways. But note that Paul did not speak of “past” or “perfect” here; that is only of knowledge. He does not say of love that which is perfect is not come. Of course, it does not fail nor pass away.

Love of Truth

The rationalist system is doubt and inquiry. Love of truth, they call it; but it is never the truth loved and known. The Lord keep us from pretended love of the truth, which destroys the truth we love; which has nothing to keep, and hence has nothing to lose, and can be always seeking.

Loving God's Children

If I love a family of children for the parent’s sake, I shall love all the children. If, on the contrary, I love some of them, and hate or despise or take no account of the rest, it is evident that my love for those I do love is owing to some congeniality or other personal cause, not from love to the parents. How is it with you and God’s children?

Made Perfect in One

As now Christ is in the Father, and we in Him, and He in us; so in the day of His appearing shall it be Christ in us and the Father in Him that we may be made perfect in one.

Man Departed Before God Drove Him Out

In the garden of Eden man, conscious of sin and unable to bear the presence of God, withdrew from Him before God drove him out.

Man's Influence

We are weak in proportion to our importance before men; when we are nothing, we can do all things, as far as human opinion is concerned. We exercise, at the same time, an unfavorable influence over others in the same degree as that in which they influence us—in the same degree as we yield to the influence which the desire of maintaining our reputation among them exercises over our hearts


The connection between matter and mind now is notorious. To say “it must be” is merely the irrationalism of saying that my present state is the necessary and universal form of being. You may, with Mr. Owen and Prof. Huxley, have examined every cerebrum and cerebellum from a Lemur to a Pithecus, and you have not touched the question; you have seen it on the side of matter, and of matter only; and you are incapable, in ideas or reasoning, of going farther, because that is the form of your existence now, and even so only one and tine lowest side of it.

Matthew 11

In Matt. 11 we have this character of grace that Christ invites to Himself, not only when sin was there and the law broken, but when the warning testimony had been given and, as far as man’s heart went, rejected. They must now come and find goodness in Him, as there was none in them.

Matthew 21-22

Observe here, that from Matt. 21:26 to the end we have the responsibility of the nation looked at as in possession of their original privileges, according to which they ought to have borne fruit. Not having done so, another is put in their place. This is not the cause of the judgment which shall be executed on Jerusalem, and which will accomplish the destruction of the city. The death of Jesus, the last of those who had been sent to look for fruit, brings judgment on His murderers. The destruction of Jerusalem is the consequence of the rejection of the testimony to the kingdom sent to call them in grace. In the first case the judgment was upon the husbandmen-the scribes, and chief priests, and leaders of the people. The judgment executed on account of the rejection of the testimony to the kingdom goes much farther. Some despise the message, others ill-treat the messengers; and, grace being thus rejected, the city is burned up, and its inhabitants cut off.

Matthew 5:17

I do not believe the law or the law’s authority is destroyed. Those who have sinned under it will be judged by it. It will be written in the heart of Judah and Israel hereafter under the new covenant, the substance of which we have in spirit though not in the letter. It will never pass till all be fulfilled. But Christ is the end of it—the τέλος, the completion and end of it—for righteousness to every one that believes. It is a false deduction that Christ came to call on Christians to be under it. The law is not abrogated; but we are not under it

Mediationship of Blessing

The mediationship of blessing does not cease when that of intercession does. Aaron in the holy place is the type of one; Melchisedec coming forth to bless Abraham is of the other.


If the spread of Bibles and missionary exertions is to produce per se the millennium, what is the meaning of unclean spirits like frogs gathering all the kings of the earth &c. to battle, to be destroyed? and that then Satan was to be bound and the thousand years commence?


When the iron was made to swim (2 Kings 6), or Peter given to walk on the water (Matt. 14), this was not “a suspension of the laws of nature,” but God’s withdrawal of the particular person or thing for the time being from the operation of the specific law. Everywhere else the law was, not suspended but, in full force.

Miracles: Powers of the World to Come

Miracles are called, in Heb. 6., “powers of the world to come,” because they were samples and signs of that energy of the Son of Man which will be so wonderfully displayed in “that day.”

Misuse of Order in 1 Corinthians 14:40

One may well be astonished at men quoting 1 Cor. 14:40 for any order which is not that of the chapter, nor of scripture at all. They avail themselves of the authority of God’s word for their own order whatever it be, while trampling under foot the only order which divine revelation sanctions, or which was intended to be established for God’s assembly.


Mohammedanism has borrowed much from revelation; but it met the lusts of men as on God’s part (who, as He is there represented, will and does satisfy them); Christianity does so not even in thought.

Morally Dead

2 Cor. 1:9; 4:10. The apostle held himself as morally dead. Hence, when death presented itself, he was more than conqueror. It could only bring him to Christ.


Note the difference of Moses in his intercourse with God at the bush, and what he was in Egypt—how entirely, when God is working by him, all questioning is gone. He is possessed and moves on in unhesitating energy every step, not so much thinking about the power as animated by it—having a just sense of what God was. The power was acting in him. God willed that his own state should be exercised, brought into question—brought out into his own consciousness. In Moses the power of circumcision predominates over a present God as to his heart; but God working by Moses, every trace of this disappears. Not that Moses was changed in this way morally—not necessarily so. But God had taken him up into his hand and was now using him.
The long sojourn in the desert was not the presence of God, which revealed and brought out all in his own sight between God and Moses, though it may be needed too. Nor was it his work in Egypt, for it had wholly disappeared before.
At any given time God may have us to pass on in peace, or in regular duty which requires absolutely His power and presence, without placing us in either of these cases. It is important to remember that the absence of the power of circumstances over us, and our power over them, is not necessarily our state if God is using us, though He may empty the vessel so to use it, as is indeed His way.


Remark the amazing power of the words in John 3:13, 14, thus brought together—the Son of man in heaven, and the Son of man must be lifted up—whether we consider His person, or the grace that is in that “must,” as sheaving how he had thoroughly taken up our cause and identified Himself with us.

The Mystery Hidden in God

How earnestly the apostle Paul desired that the saints, yea, all saints should be in the intelligence of his stewardship of the mystery which had been hidden in God from the beginning of the world. For to him it was given, as he says, to fill out the word of God. Without the revelation of this mystery, the whole counsel of God could not be known. It is now revealed. And he desired the saints’ full assurance of understanding to the acknowledgment of it.

Names of God in the Psalms.

Jah seems to be the existing One objectively. There is One and only One Who is. Eh’yeh is His own assertion of it—conscious existence in will. Jehovah is He Who does so exist but in relation with others and revealed in time. He alway is, but “was and is to come” is brought in. There is existence, yet not only an eternal now but a past and what is to come. He is in relationship and in connection with time, and so a Securer of promises. And we read of His mercy enduring “forever.” Adonai, related to none of these, carries the thought of lordship and rule.

New Jerusalem

The new Jerusalem is divine in its origin and also heavenly. It might be of God and earthly. It might be heavenly and angelic. It was neither, but divine in origin and heavenly in nature and character. It was clothed with divine glory, as founded on Christ’s work.

No Fear in Love

“If I am sure that a person loves me, I do not fear him. If I am only desiring to be the object of his affection, I may fear that I am not so, and may even fear himself. Nevertheless, this fear would always tend to destroy my love for him and my desire to be loved by him. There is incompatibility between the two affections—there is no fear in love.”
Courtesy of Most likely this text has not been proofread. Any suggestions for spelling or punctuation corrections would be warmly received. Please email them to:

No Vail in Hebrews

There is no vail in Hebrews, therefore the holiest and the holy are not distinguished; the holy things could not be guilty, but they could be defiled.

Not Alive Under Sin or Law

We, Christians, are not looked at as alive under sin but as dead—hence not as alive under law but as dead. Let it be remembered that no deliverance from law is deliverance from obedience or commandments. I add “commandments;” for it is not sufficient to be right: Christ’s authority must be obeyed.

Not Living to Myself

Christ comes and, in grace, dies for my sins; and, if I am quickened, I am quickened with Him, and they are all left behind and forgotten; but I am quickened, not to live to myself at all. Now you will find that will cut to the root of many and many a thing. You say, What is the harm of it? I say, Is it living to Christ? What do I find in Christ’s life? Why, that He never did a single thing for Himself. “He died that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again”; carry that into everything, and, if you can say about anything, It is for myself, then it is not for Christ. Where Christ is all, as He is in all, then He is the object. The claim that He makes is not a legal claim that comes upon me, but that He died for me.
J. N. D.

Not Self but Christ

IT is very difficult to get rid of self-esteem in respect of others. But it must be rooted out. “More than these” the Lord recalls, but Peter now no longer pretends to. We must be brought down to a level with others, if we exalt self at their expense. But the effect is to make Christ everything, being ashamed of self. Peter says simply, “Thou knowest that I love Thee.” At present I think anyone could (though I would not be behind) love Christ better than I do; but that I love Him, and as to object none but Him—that He knows Still how poor what is there!

Not Walking in Darkness

It is not a question of making others walk in your light, but you must not walk in their darkness. This is the great point, not occupying ourselves with others, prescribing what they must do, but feeling my own sin, as well as the common sin, yet by grace resolved at all costs to be where I can honor and obey the Lord. Is not this a true plain imperative duty, an undeniable principle of scripture, that commends itself to your conscience? It may be that you do not act accordingly; but you cannot deny that it is a right thing, and what you ought to do.

Nothing Good in Self

It is true that there are many amiable traits in human nature, but not when God is in question. Christ drew out all the wickedness of man. Peter learned that there was nothing good in himself when he had done his best, and no failure in Christ’s love when he had done his worst.

Numbers in Scripture

Numbers In Scripture.—Seven is completeness in an inward way—constituted completeness in a thing in itself, not in relationship to others, not compounded but constitutive completeness. Seven cannot be divided—it is the highest uncomposed number that cannot. Twelve is the most divisible of all, and means administrative completeness in man. So twelve tribes of Israel, and twelve apostles; as on the other hand, seven spirits of God, seven churches, seven seals and trumpets and vials.

The Object of Faith

Christ, not my forgiveness, is the object of faith, though my forgiveness follows as a consequence revealed by God.

Occupation With Faults of Others a Bad Sign

It is a poor sign of repentance when a person is occupied with the faults of others. Rather does this betray the working of a hardened heart—of one who is not before God about his own faults. When conscience is exercised, God deals with self in His sight.

Old Bottles

Ishmael as an old bottle burst in the day of Abraham’s feast: so did the elder brother in Luke 15 The Galatians were in danger of becoming the old bottles again. Ananias, in Acts 9:13, savored of this.

The Olive Tree

The olive tree (Rom. 11) extends from Abraham’s time on to the millennium.

One Step at a Time With Christ

Let us not suffer the dread of what may be to hinder our present blessing. We can only, take one step at a time: let us take it with Christ.

Our Sorrows and Christ

Never a sorrow, a shame, or a difficulty, but we may connect all with Christ by the grace of God—through the cross, of course.

Our Strong Tower

Gen. 3-1 John.
Eve surrendered God to the serpent. Assurance of truth and love in God is our strong tower. (Prov. 18:10.) The lie has darkened our mind as to God: the truth restores us to God morally; the blood judicially. The Son brings the truth that God is Light and Love. He is therefore called “the Word,” “the Light of men.” He puts us back in the strong tower. (1 John 4:6.)

Outside the Camp

Because a Christian has got heaven, he goes outside everything of the world. The Jew was outside the veil, but inside the camp; the Christian is inside the veil, and ought to be outside the camp. The “camp” is the world doing its best to honor God: that is just where a Christian ought not to be.
I desire in Scripture not to explain, but to receive; and in communicating, to say what is there, not to add thoughts. This may seem a slight distinction, but the effect of the difference will soon be seen in the formation of systems, instead of actual profiting upon divine instruction.

Participles in 1 John

Note the tenses of the participles in 1 John 9, and 5:18 is Ἰεγεννημένος is the state, γεννηθεὶς is the fact, the consequence of which is that he keeps himself.

Patience: A Comment

Many since Chrysostom have assumed that “patience” is here laid down as the pre-eminent sign of an apostle. This is not said; but the truth is yet weightier. Irony and seriousness withal pervade these closing chapters of this touching Epistle. In the face of “the overmuch apostles,” surely none of the twelve, but pseudo-apostles (11:13), those pretenders who imposed on too many of the Corinthians, we read, “The signs indeed of the apostle were wrought out among you in all endurance by signs and wonders and powers.” Faith and love kept him from mentioning himself; so that the rebuke fell unsparingly on those who sought to exalt themselves by undermining him. “Patience,” instead of being “the supreme or at least first-named sign,” is the deep substratum of grace which lay under them all. It is characteristic of God (“the God of patience”); it shone above all in Christ; it distinguished the apostle beyond all others. But how strange “the inference” that “patience should, a fortiori, characterize those who are not apostles”! Are not premise and inference equally at fault? There is no need of straining what is so strictly personal; for we as Christians are “strengthened with all power according to the might of his glory unto all endurance (or, patience) and long-suffering with joy.”


Perfection—When it is said, “Be ye perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect,” (Matt. 5:48.), Jesus Himself explains this passage by what precedes. This perfection consists in acting according to love and not according to the law of retaliation which says, “An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.” It is the acting towards men according to the principle of God acting towards us according to the grace of our heavenly Father. There is no question here as to the root of sin in our nature.
This word perfection is used in connection with the three great revelations of God. He made Himself known to Abraham as the Almighty, to the Jews as the Eternal, and to Christians as Father. God said to Abraham, “I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect:” thus signifying that he ought to walk before God, trusting continually in His power as Almighty. Abraham did not do this—he failed in this respect, for he spoke falsehood (Gen. 20:2), just because he was not trusting in the almighty power of God. The question is not as to sin in Abraham’s fallen nature, but of acting in full confidence in God’s omnipotence. In fact, Abraham had still sin, and he fell.
It was said to the Israelites, “Thou shalt be perfect with Jehovah thy God” (Deut. 18:13). The matter in hand here was their not imitating the abominations of the Canaanites in their idolatries; but there was no question of the state of purification from all sin, of the heart of one Israelite or another. The contrary is so true that in the same book (Deut. 29:4) Moses says to them, “Yet the Lord hath not given you an heart to perceive, and eyes to see, and ears to hear unto this day.”
Thirdly, it is said (Matt. 5:48), “Be ye perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” We at once observe a difference in the expressions. It is not said, Be perfect “before me,” or “with thy God,” as was said to Abraham and to the Israelites, because the name of Father reveals to us the fullness of grace. According to this sweet name they were already children, accepted is Christ as Christ is accepted of the Father. They were already made accepted in the Beloved; righteous before God as Christ is righteous; loved as Jesus is loved. Now it is not said, Present to God a character of perfection, such that you should be accepted of Him through this means, and that you should be well-pleasing to Him; but you are the children of your heavenly Father—therefore display His character to the world. “For he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.” He acts according to His grace, and not according to the law: you saved sinners, you are and ought to be witnesses of it. The publicans love those who love them, but your heavenly Father loves His enemies. Act according to this rule, and be perfect even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect. It is not said, Be perfect before Him, or with Him, as if you were without sin, but like Him, act in love towards your enemies.
There is no question here as to whether sin is or is not in the flesh, but of the principle which ought to direct the conduct of God’s children, in contrast with the principle of the law or of natural justice. But if to be perfect as my heavenly Father is to be applied to the absence of the sin of my nature, if it means that I resemble Him perfectly in this respect, seeing that perfection, according to those who hold that doctrine, still leaves things which expose us to eternal damnation, the same thing would be true of the divine perfection—an idea which, of course, would be the grossest impiety and absurdity.

Perfectly in and Perfectly Out

The saints are perfectly in and perfectly out, whether in John’s Gospel (9) or in the Epistle to the Hebrews. (10, 13.)

Person Not Merely Doctrine

It is a person whom we know, and not merely a doctrine. By this precious means which God used truths with respect to Jesus are far more connected with the Old Testament history.

Peter's Conscience

I do not think Peter’s conscience was reached before the third time of asking. He felt (not passed over) the gap in his heart as forgiven and in favor; but God must have the conscience fully reached to have confidence and communion.

Pictures From Abraham and Joseph

If Abraham gives us the bright and blessed picture of communion with God, in Joseph we find goodness and unsullied integrity of heart toward God in the midst of the power of evil. It is lovely, and in this a beautiful foreshadowing of the Lord in his life, the beloved of His Father. Note, too, that faithfulness is the way of divine, spiritual understanding.

Pilgrims and Strangers

We are pilgrims and strangers here: this is our place by redemption itself. The Abrahams and Davids were pilgrims and strangers because they were only looking for redemption by power not yet come, by getting nothing of what was promised, or else by persecution under the government of God on the earth; so that after all under that order of things it was a puzzle to both, though the final inheritance of the land, the heir, and the judgment of the wicked met the puzzle in their minds.


Power, the power of Christ practically, depends not upon revelations, knowledge of the glory, &c., but upon our feeling our own nothingness (2 Cor. 12) Affection in unjudged flesh will not do—and we must look to that. Sentiment is worth nothing: you may have plenty of it with sincerity, but it will not carry a man through. That can only be in the power of the Holy Ghost.

The Power and Wisdom of God

Under the first Adam we have either the corrupt woman or violent man; but Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God.

Prayer and Worship in Unison With God's Purpose

Prayer and worship should characterize the Christian and the church, now that Christ the Son of God is dead and risen, and we enjoy the immense results by faith—but prayer and worship in unison with the purpose of God is the calling of the bride, the church; not mere isolated action, although that may have its place and be most true for special need. Still, the great characteristic trait should be this—that God has let our hearts into His own secret in what He is doing for Christ. W. K.

Presence of God

The presence of God keeps everything in its place—nothing else: otherwise the human mind works. John does not worship up in heaven: when others did, his place was to see and record. The living creatures celebrate God, the elders worship. When John sees the angel, he was going to worship him. What a difference the presence of God makes!


Jesus does two things in heaven. Besides presenting me in himself before God, he intercedes for me by virtue of his own unchangeable righteousness. Nor does this weaken our sense of sin, but the contrary. Feeling for sin is mostly deeper when we can see it as all put away. If this could be imputed to the believer, Christ must die over and over again, for without shedding of blood there is no remission. We are not justified from one sin today, and from another tomorrow. Justification might then take place ever so many times, the reverse of which is ruled in Heb. 9 and 10 where it is the question. Righteousness is not by priesthood. Christ is between us and God, and we are in him as our head. His present priesthood is exercised as regards our walk; but justification has to do with our persons, and not our works. As my head, I am perfect in him; as my representative, he stands and pleads for me. And there is the contrast with the sacrifices, under the law, offered for every sin. If the death of Christ has not finished the work once and forever, he must die very often. If he has died once for all, it is because the worshippers once purged have no more conscience of sins

Priesthood and Advocacy

The High Priest has to do with our access to God; the Advocate, with our communion with the Father and His government of us as children. The Epistle to the Hebrews treats of the ground of access, and shows us to be perfected forever. The priestly intercession does not apply to sins in that respect. It brings mercy and grace to help in time of need here; but we are perfected forever before God. Yet communion is necessarily interrupted by the least sin or idle thought—yea, really had been practically, if not judicially, before the idle thought was there. Here the advocacy of John comes in, “If any one sin;” and the soul is restored. But there is never imputation of sin to the believer.

Promise and Covenant With Abraham

In Luke 1 the horn is raised up in the house of David, but all the expectation and testimony of the Spirit of God is connected with the promise to Abraham, when Christ (not Moses) is born. The angel only speaks of the fact. The heart of the saint recognizes the fulfillment of the promise and covenant with Abraham.


Prophecy is the intervention of God’s sovereign grace in testimony, in order to maintain His relationship with His people when they have failed in their responsibility to God in the position they held, so that their relationship with God in this position has been broken; and before God has established any new relationship by His own power in grace. The subjects of prophecy are, consequently, the following:—The dealings of God in government upon the earth, in the midst of Israel; the moral details of the conduct of the people which led to their sin; God’s intervention, at the end, in grace, by the Messiah, to establish His people in assured blessing, by God’s own power. Two things are connected with these leading subjects: the judgment of the nations, which was necessary for the establishment of Israel in their own land; and the rejection of Christ, by the Jews, at His first coming into this world. Finally, Israel had been the center and keystone of the system that was established after the judgment upon Noah’s descendants for their pride at Babel. In this system the throne and temple of God at Jerusalem were:—the one, the seat of divine authority over all nations; and the other, the place where they should go up to worship Him who dwelt between the cherubim. Israel having failed in that obedience which was the condition of their blessing and the bond of the whole order recognized by God in the earth, another system of human supremacy is set up in the person of Nebuchadnezzar. Prophecy treats, therefore, of this unitary system also, and of its relationship with the people of God on the earth. Guilty of rebellion against God, and associated with Israel in the rejection of Christ, and at the close rising in revolt against Him, this power is associated with the Jews in the judgment, as being united with them in evil.


Prophecy is sorrowful because it unveils the sin, the ungrateful folly, of God’s people. But it unveils the heart of One who is unwearied in love, who loves the people, who seeks their good, although He feels their sin according to His love. It is the heart of God that speaks. These two characters of prophecy throw light on the twofold end it has in view, and help us to understand its bearing. First of all, it addresses itself to the actual state of the people, and shows them their sin; it always, therefore, supposes the people to be in a fallen condition. When they peacefully enjoy the blessings of God, there is no need of displaying their condition to them. But in the second place, during the period in which the people are still acknowledged, it speaks of present restoration on repentance, to encourage them to return to Jehovah; and it proclaims deliverance. But God well knew the hearts of His people, and that they would not yield to His call. To sustain the faith of the remnant, faithful amidst this unbelief, and for the instruction of His people at all times, He adds promises which will assuredly be fulfilled by the coming of Messiah. These promises are sometimes connected with the circumstances of a near and partial deliverance, sometimes with the consummation of the people’s iniquity in the rejection of Christ come in humiliation.

Provision in the Wilderness

Israel in the wilderness had nothing to do for food or raiment: the Lord provided. They had no care as to their circumstances: the Lord called them either to rest or to motion. But they had activities of the sanctuary as much as faith pleased or as conscience demanded, in worship, communion, and confession, through their different offerings. They had the ordinances of holiness to practice, the future ways of Canaan to learn, and all this and the like in great variety. They began their action by erecting the tabernacle. The Book of Leviticus shows this.

Provision of the Word

There is not a maze of falsehood, not an error by which Satan has deluded man, and kept him thus from God, which is not met in the Word.

Psalm 102

Psa. 102—What is peculiar in this Psalm is that it brings out the person of Christ, His divine nature, in answer to His sufferings and cutting off. It is not grace to others by His sufferings, nor judgment on others because of their iniquity in inflicting them. But in reply to the utter loneliness in sorrow and touching appeal to Jehovah of a heart withered like grass, He is owned as Jehovah, the Creator, Himself. It is not what He is for others through his suffering and humiliation, but Himself. The answer is his own glory, the blessed title of His person. This it is which gives it such peculiar interest.

Psalm 133

Psa. 133 is one of the two places where life for evermore, life eternal, is spoken of in the Old Testament; the other is Dan. 12 both as accomplished in the time of blessing to come. In the New Testament it is fully revealed in Christ; and he that believes in Him hath everlasting life.

Psalm 40

In Psa. 40 Christ identifies Himself, though distinguishing the remnant with Israel. “Praise,” He says, “unto our God.” The effect of this is, that many see it, fear, and trust in Jehovah. It acts on the remnant in the latter day, and leads them to trust in Jehovah. They can trust for deliverance too; many will. His preaching righteousness to the great congregation gathered a little flock. His deliverance as the suffering One will be blessed to many. “Who hath begotten me all these?” says Zion in that day. This may take in the ten tribes too: still, as a principle, a multitude will be there. It was not so at Christ’s first coming. He was to be a despised and rejected One in His own history and trial.

Psalm 42

Our only place of blessing is to be spiritually sensible of the evil around us. Still it is most important that we should not in spirit get down from heaven. We should have God between us and our troubles, not our troubles between us and God. We shall then neither be insensible nor breaking down, “while they say, where is thy God?” —Where is the Holy Ghost in the church? There is an energy of faith which may be an instrument of display; but there is a dependence of faith which cannot be taken away from us. “Hope thou in God” was abstractedly all that was left. God was between the soul and his afflictions, though he had nothing but God. It is healthful to our souls to be looking out to the glory; no good to know the evil if not in communion with the glory. It would discourage the heart and unsanctify it. Satan is very anxious to tell us of evil, if he can only make it the instrument of his power on the heart. But if we can look out clean beyond it to the glory, we can bear to survey the evil in all its extent
When we partake of the divine nature through a grace which has set us in perfect peace as in ourselves, we can love in a divine way and love righteousness in a divine way. Otherwise we cannot. We must have a loveable object to call out a corresponding affection, or it will be an idolatrous passion towards an unworthy object. To love in supreme sovereign goodness is an absolutely divine quality. “God is love.” Hence, at once, the apostle says, “He that loveth is born of God and knoweth God;” he derives this from God, and God is supreme object of it. This characterizes the divine nature as communicated to us. I can also understand and delight in righteousness in itself, and holiness, being made partaker of His holiness, and renewed in knowledge after the image of Him that created me in righteousness and true holiness. But while conscience has anything to say, I cannot love it simply, though the conscience may see it to be right and good, because I cannot and ought not to love to be condemned, nor ought I to be content to be defiled, supposing goodness to be as great as may be. A believer knows God’s love to be supreme and infinite, because it reached him as a sinner—supreme, because there was nothing lovely; infinite, because nothing is so far from supreme love as enmity against it; and that was the condition of his proud heart.

Psalm 68

In Psa. 68 Adonai’s word went forth. The glad tidings were chanted by Israel’s daughters in a great company. Kings fled apace. What a sudden and complete deliverance! The quietest home-stayer divided the spoil; for it was the Lord’s doing. Then Israel came out in all her beauty, though they had been lying in poverty and wretchedness. In all the strivings and pretensions of the nations, this is God’s will.
But whence all this deliverance? The Lord had ascended on high, received gifts, as man, and for men; yea, even for rebellious Israel, who were now in question, that Jehovah might dwell among them. This brings out praise to the God of their salvation.

Psalm 72

In Psa. 72 the expression “Prayer shall be made continually for him,” shows simply that the blessing enjoyed through the Son of David, raises the desire and request for His glory and continuance in power. While literally spoken of Solomon, I think it would point out Christ reigning as a true man upon earth.

Psalm 77

Psa. 77 We do know God’s own nature and character in relation to us by faith, and can reckon on it as to all He does as faithful and unchangeable; but we cannot know and judge His ways in themselves.

The Psalms and Christ

In the Psalm when sufferings from men are spoken of, vengeance is always called for by the speaker. In Christ’s life historically there never was a trace of this, but the contrary. On the cross He prays that they may be forgiven; as in His lifetime He rebuked the disciples for thinking of it, not knowing what Spirit they were of. It is evident that this is of the greatest weight in our judgment of the manner of application to Christ.

Ransom for All

I quite believe that Christ died for all, but I cannot say that He bore, as a substitute, the sins of all. The word, it seems to me, is very clear on this point in its doctrines, in the consequences that it draws from them, and in its types. So that I take ἀντίλντρον ὑπὲρ πάυτων [a ransom for all] in the simplest and widest sense. Satisfaction has been presented to God for men, but here (1 Tim. 2:6) it is evident these words refer to the desire to make of Jesus, at least of the Messiah, a mediator of the Jewish nation. No, says the apostle, He is so for all. God θέλει (not (βούλεται) that all, not the Jews only, should be saved; He has given, therefore, one Mediator for all, who has made the propitiation which was necessary, and demanded by the Majesty of God, so that the door is open to all through the satisfaction that He has made to the outraged majesty of God.
J. N. D.

Read His Word

By far the best means of assuring oneself of the truth and authority of God’s word is to read His word itself.

Receiving or Rejecting Him

The presence of God himself, a man among men, changed the position of everything. Either man must receive, as a crown of blessing and of glory, the one whose presence was to banish all evil, and develop and perfect every element of good, furnishing at the same time an object which should be the center of all affections rendered perfectly happy by the enjoyment of this object; or, by rejecting him, our poor nature must manifest itself as being enmity against God, and must prove the necessity for a completely new order of things in which the happiness of man and the glory of God should be based on a new creation

Red Sea and Jordan

In the Red Sea, it is what we are brought out of; in the Jordan, what we are brought into.

Redeemed and Called Out

The moment the people are redeemed, they are called out, though as yet only into a wilderness, to hold a feast to the Lord. And be it so that they have holden a feast to the golden calf, while Moses is in the mount to receive the given law, this does not alter what it is to faith.


Redemption, with conditional blessing after it, only ends in the loss of the blessing, just as Creation did. It is the same thing or worse. It depends on us to secure the blessing, and now as fallen beings, instead of innocent and free. Grace alone can keep us; and so it will be with Israel.

Rejecting the Word

It is really a question between faith and infidelity. If I believe the Bible to be the word of God, the judgment is formed; I have only to bow. If I reject it, I am an infidel; my judgment of it is formed. I may be ignorant of it; then there is no judgment to be formed: though I am sure, if a new nature be in us, it will be received by us as light is by the eye, and known. The rejection of the word, it being what it is, is the judgment of what rejects it.

Remembering Christ

We do not remember a glorified Christ. As such we know Him now. But it is the humbled Christ we remember. There is no humbled Christ now, save in the memories of his people; and to them he says, “Do this in remembrance of me.”

Resurrection of Christ

The resurrection of Christ, laid hold of by faith, is the pivot of true separation to God. It is the only thing that enables a man to make a clean break with the world and the flesh, as it is the witness of victory over Satan and judgment.

Revelation 2-3

Note this immensely important principle: the church judged by the word; not the church a judge. The church (I use the word designedly here, as used to claim this authority) cannot be an authority when the Lord calls me, if I have ears to hear, to hear and receive the judgment pronounced by Him on it. I judge its state by the words of the Spirit, and am bound to do so. It cannot therefore be an authority on the Lord’s behalf over me in that state, Discipline is not in question here (as in Matt. 18:17), but the church as wielding authority.

Revelation 3:8

Rev. 3:8 tells of the Lord’s love to the church. Nothing marks the low state of things more than this, that the thought of legality is connected with God’s looking for works. It is not so at all. Christ desires that the life he has given should appear. If you say to Christ, I will give no works, He says, you do not care for My love. If we really cared for His love, we should wish to hear Him say, I wish for this thing—that thing. It is the jealousy of His love that cannot bear that another should be in our hearts in His place

Revelation 4-22

The rejection of the last phase of the ecclesiastical system on earth is the starting-point of the properly prophetic portion of the Revelation (chap. 4-22.).

Revelation 8

In Rev. 8 all parts of orderly existence typified by nature are smitten—trees, grass, sea, rivers, fountains, sun, moon, and stars: all symbols, but the course of nature in the prophetic world.

Revelation 9

Is not Rev. 9 correlative with chapter 7? The locusts hurt those not sealed (in the east rather), the horsemen those not faithful among Gentiles (only the latter is more limited; it is the third part of men, or prophetic Roman earth).

Revelation of God

Does not the nature of the effect produced as to the knowledge of God, where Christianity has existed, (or even Judaism), prove that there was a revelation of God?

Reward in the Kingdom

As a rule, reward is in the kingdom, ten cities, &c., in Matt. 25 ten and four talents being alike into the joy of the Lord. Fitness for heaven is not connected with progress in scripture. “He hath made us meet.” It is natural to suppose greater spirituality is more capable of enjoying; but the object is so great after all—it eclipses us! And we must remember Christ is our life, and there all else gone. Scripture, as far as I know, never speaks of spiritual capacity or growth in it to enjoy more. Here, surely, there is such a thing. When God is all in all, there is no such thing spoken of. God may have in His eternal purposes fitted for more or less. But, as scripture does not speak of it, I do not. Reward in the kingdom is clearly spoken of. J. N. D.

Righteous Government to Come

God has not yet made such a government of the earth as can be an adequate measure and manifestation of His righteousness. Christianity does not even contemplate this, but is a display of His grace to faith calling souls to heavenly glory. The law in Israel did take this ground, but necessarily failed through their rebelliousness. The millennium will be exactly this, when Christ shall be exalted in earth as in heaven to the glory of God the Father.

Righteousness Established in a Heavenly Way

Remark the great difference between the Psalmist’s celebration of God’s righteousness, sitting on the throne, judging right, and vindicating the righteous man from the oppressor; and Christ on the cross who was not vindicated on the earth but declares Himself forsaken of God (His enemies, outwardly, having all their will against Him), and then, righteousness being established in a heavenly way, God’s righteousness in setting Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places.

Righteousness, Life, Salvation

The righteousness we enjoy is of a new order, accomplished in another, imputed to us; unlike what the law proposed and demanded. The life we breathe is of a new order, infallible and victorious, had from the risen Christ, and unlike the life in Adam which had to be tested. The salvation which we inherit is of a new order; it is reserved or kept safe for us (1 Peter 1), unlike the Canaan which Joshua divided to Israel.
Thus, “if any man be in Christ, he is a new creation.” Note—righteousness is discussed by Paul; life by John; and salvation in the Epistle to the Hebrews.

The Righteousness of God

Man has no righteousness for God, but God has His in His grace for man, sinful and wretched man. Who can stand before the law of God? Who can say, “I have not transgressed it?” Now can a man justify himself by a law he has transgressed? “By law is the knowledge of sin.” What is to be done? Hear what the apostle says: “But now the righteousness of God without the law is made manifest, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; even the righteousness of God by faith in Jesus Christ unto all, and upon all them that believe, for there is no difference: for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God; being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood.”
It is the precious blood of Christ, the Lamb of God, which is the only answer (which God Himself has to us furnished) to the demand of the justice which condemns the sinner. The righteousness of God revealed in the gospel makes righteous the man who has no righteousness to present to God; so that God is just in justifying him that has faith in Jesus.
What grace! What a blessing for the poor sinner who has a heart broken and cleansed by faith, sufficiently true to God to condemn himself! Boasting is excluded through faith in Jesus; yet peace and assurance are exercised, and holiness follows.


The Epistle to the Romans begins, not with governmental judgments, but with the revelation of wrath from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men holding the truth in unrighteousness; and brings in personal justification as the fruit of God’s righteousness to the believer.

Romans 3:19

Rom. 3:19 is reckoned to prove that all men are under law. It is astonishing how any one could so little see the force of the apostle’s argument. The apostle had proved Jews and gentiles under sin; and then turns back to the many advantages the Jews had. He was not derogating from them. Well, he says, you have the oracles of God: let us hear them. Are we better than gentiles? You are as much under sin as the gentiles; read your own books; from which he then cites passages, and (relying on the claim of the Jews, that the law belonged to them, that the law spoke to those that were under it,) applies their denunciations to the Jews who were thus stopping their mouths by their own oracles, which they claimed as belonging exclusively to them. There you are, then, says Paul; you say the scriptures apply to you, and that is what they say; and then every mouth is stopped. That the gentiles were sinners was admitted: they were not Jews by nature. But their own oracles brought in the Jews too; and every mouth was stopped. How any one could think the statement that the law spoke to those who were under it, meant that it spoke to all, when the subject is the Jews alone professing it, and its advantages, would be hard to think, but for the prejudices of a system

Romans 5:19

Rom. 5:19. The proof of righteousness is that, on the accomplishment of His work, God has exalted Christ to His right hand. Christ has done the thing in which righteousness is accomplished.

Romans 5:21

Not only was it impossible that God could do anything that “sin” may abound, but if He had said where “the offense” abounded, grace did also abound, it would have confined it to those under the Law. But He was showing the contrary: that Christ’s work reached out beyond to Adam’s [race] in aspect and efficacy. Grace overrode the whole, though it might be rejected. J.N.D.

Romans 6

Rom. 6 considers first sin in respect of nature, and then the man in respect of relationship, and subjection and (as noted elsewhere) obedience to a person in contrast with a law.

Romans 6:4-8

I apprehend the “shall” of Rom. 6:5 is not future but consequence. Verse 6 is corroborative of it, the result being the last words of verse 4. Verse 8 is consequence, but on to the future, and this, because there is power in his resurrection. (Ver 9.) But it is power of life, putting of course in a given place by resurrection, but not in simple standing as in Eph. 2:6. No doubt, this is connected with power, as in the end of Eph. 1, but it is not life as here working in us. In Rom. 6:7, it is not justified from “sins;” and, it is clear, a dead man cannot be accused of sin working in him: his state of death clears (justifies) him at once. In all this part of Romans, the apostle speaks of sin, not sins. When he speaks of offenses, the law is introduced.

Romans and Ephesians Compared

In Romans we find experiences, because the soul is brought through the process which brings it into liberty. In Ephesians we find no experiences, because man is seen first dead in sins; and then united to Christ exalted to God’s right hand.

Romans and Ephesians Compared

In Romans we find experiences, because the soul is brought through the process which brings it into liberty; while in the Ephesians we find no experiences, because man is seen, first dead in sins, and then united to Christ exalted to God’s right hand.

Room for Christ

If at the Savior’s birth the world had “no room” or welcome for Him! on the other hand, what a welcome has the Savior secured for us to the “many abodes” of the Father’s house on high (John 14:1-3), where indeed is no “scant room.” Cast out by the world, there has He gone, and thence will He come again to receive us to Himself, that we may be where He now is—and with Himself forever. For Him then, we wait, who comes quickly. Even so; come, Lord Jesus.

Ruin and Glory

The church was called to glorify Christ: “I,” says He, “am glorified in them.” But many antichrists, the falling away, and the man of sin, are the result. Even in early days “they all seek their own, not the things of Jesus Christ.” It is the last time, says John, and Jude declares the objects of judgment were there; as Paul warned that after his departure grievous wolves were to enter in, and, of those then, men to arise, speaking perverse things to draw away the disciples after them. Again, in the last days perilous, or grievous, times should come, evil men and imposters waxing worse and worse. If the Gentile continued not in God’s goodness, which he surely has not, he should be cut off, as the Jew before (Rom. 11) But Christ will come for His own, yea, to be glorified in His saints and to be marveled at in all those that believed. The church has fallen, like man, like Israel, like the world-power; but grace will produce and perfect its own work. Christ’s building (Matt. 16) will be complete and perfect, and manifested in glory; as man’s building (1 Cor. 3:12-15) has been ill-done and corrupted, and will come under the severest of judgments (Rev. 17; 18)

The Saint in Glory

The saint in glory is glad that there should be something above himself there. He can strip himself of glory that the Lord should have it all. What it contrast to the spirit of infidelity in the heart! The saint can delight in the character and honor of God, in his worthiness to be exalted. Even here this is the instinct of divine life. Man is entirely changed here; for, according to his natural impulse, he would pull down God Himself, if He did not suit him. The celebration of his power draws out the worship of the elders. Are we not glad to have crowns to lay at His feet?


Samuel was a child of promise, which is always the sign of grace. And therefore at his birth his mother celebrates through the Holy Ghost the praises of peace. He becomes at first a mere waiting boy in the tabernacle, whence he is called forth that all Israel might have him to be the prophet of God, and finally see in him the raiser of the stone Ebenezer—the believer of help of the nation.

The Sanctuary of God

If a man is a Christian, he belongs to the sanctuary of God. God has given him a present place inside the holiest, which faith should use to judge flesh by.

Scripture Inspired

“It is not all the truth that the Scriptures contain the Word of God, but everything that is Scripture is inspired, and profitable for all needed to make the man of God perfect.”... all he wants “to complete his state and competency for service, he finds in the Scripture.”

Scripture Is the Expression of God's Mind

The scriptures are the permanent expression of God’s mind and will, furnished as such with His authority. They are His expression of His own thoughts. Not only is the truth given in them by inspiration, but they are inspired, and are the standard by which every spoken word is to be judged. Does this perfect and supreme authority of the scriptures set aside ministry? By no means: it is the foundation of ministry. One is a minister of the word.

The Scriptures

One God is the living center from which all flows; one Christ the living center round which all its truth circles, and to which it refers, though in various glory; and one Spirit the divine sap which carries its power from its source in God to the minutest branches of the all united truth, testifying of the glory, the grace, and the truth of Him whom God sets forth as the object and center and head of all that is in connection with Himself, of Him who is, withal, God over all, blessed for evermore. J. N. D.

The Second Tables of the Law

While the people are distinctly put under law, the principle of the second tables (Ex. 34) was law after present forgiveness and mercy. This is exactly the ground Christians want to be upon now—to bring in law, after present forgiveness and mercy. But this it is that the apostle calls a ministry of death and condemnation. For, the first time he went up, his face did not shine; and it is to this shining of his face on the second time that the apostle refers in 2 Cor. 3. If the people were still under law, the more gracious God was, the more guilty they were.

Security of Salvation

Can you lose your salvation? Yes, if it depended on me.

Seeing Christ Glorified

Note the effects of the power of seeing the glorified Christ more distinctly. It absorbs the heart. “I have suffered the loss of all things and do count them but dung.” It is not only that we have given them up, but their power is gone. The actual trials on the path become matter of joy; they are the fellowship of His sufferings, conformity to His death. It gives unity of action and perseverance. It imparts a heavenly character to the path (the calling is above), confidence and joy in reference to God. It is God’s calling, and in the most blessed way in Christ Jesus. Christ Himself is the object; but this is united with our being glorified by divine favor resting on us as on Him. Resurrection too is “from among the dead”: for this too divine righteousness in Christ Himself can alone fit or suffice.

Seeing Christ Glorified (Duplicate)

How powerful is the effect! It absorbs the heart. “I have suffered the loss of all things,” said the apostle, “and I do count them but dung.” It is not only that we have given them up, but their power is gone: the actual trials on the path become a matter of joy. They are the fellowship of His sufferings and conformity to His death. It gives unity of action and perseverance. It gives a heavenly character to the path, the calling being above, no less than confidence and joy in reference to God. It is His calling, and in the most blessed way, in Christ Jesus. Christ Himself is the object; but this is united on us as on Him — “resurrection from among the dead.” For this too divine righteousness in Christ Himself can only be fit or suffice. J.N.D.

Self-Exaltation Drawing Man to Antichrist

All the resources in the character and nature of man, apart from conscience, will astonish the world and draw it into following Antichrist; because the glory of man in self-exaltation, and not service to Christ in humiliation, is man’s natural bent.


Christ suffered from God because of His faithfulness to man, as He suffered from man because of his faithfulness to God. But this leaves open scripture-proof of any transitional suffering, distinct from either and between the two.


Self-judgment, how due to grace! which blots out our wretched past, and declares that, as He is, so are we in this world: an impossibility, but for His advocacy. This is a need, no less than His propitiation.

Self-Judgment by Grace

Self-judgment by grace always tends to promote humility and love. The man who has passed through such an exercise as to the beam in his own eye will be able to act the more tenderly in casting the mote out of his brother’s eye.

Self-Occupation Degrades a Saint

Occupation with self is real degradation in a saint of God; exaltation morally is the humility that abandons self to be filled with Christ.

Separation of That Which Is of God

The desire of the faithful man being the reproduction of the Word and of God’s affections revealed in it, can He reject His people in a mass as wicked? This cannot be. Can He accept them in a condition of rebellion, which is so much the worse because they belong to God? He must learn to do that which God does—take account of all that is good, and, if it is too late to preserve everything, never condemn that which is of God. Τhe penetrating eye of God never loses sight of this, and the affections of His servant are fixed on it also. But God has His own mind and acts according to His own will: He lays hold of what is precious, owns it, and separates it from what is vile. If Satan can, he will mingle them together. Those who know how to separate them shall be as the mouth of God.


I believe it is more devotedness than competency to help, which is wanting, though devotedness is a large part of the competency. It is this we want, we are not our own but His, bought with a price. It is carried out cheerfully and joyfully when we think of Him, not of ourselves. For love does not grow weary of serving, though service may be often in trial as regards the scene—indeed, save with rare encouragement, always in the general run of it, is. “Therefore, I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.”
J. N. D.

Service for Christ and His Love to Me

It is an unspeakable privilege to have any work to do for Christ; but if He sees in me something tending to exalt my flesh, He must lay me by and make me to be satisfied with His approbation, He may say, as to Philadelphia, “I know thy works,” and then say nothing about them. Are you content with His approval? to hear Him say, “have loved thee?” This is what the heart has to be satisfied with; not from any service in which He may occupy me, but in the calm, settled confidence that Christ loves me.

Service of and Communion With Christ

O my brother, be it ours to fill the little while separate from the world, and above fleshly ease in the devoted service of Christ. Nothing so good and happy now, and nothing so appreciated on high and through all eternity, unless it be the communion with Himself and the worship which accompany it. W. K.

Service of Christ

O my brother, be ours to fill the little while separate from the world, and above fleshly ease in the devoted service of Christ. Nothing so good and happy now, and nothing so appreciated on high and through all eternity, unless it be the communion with Himself and the worship which accompany it.

Sitting at His Feet

It was not much to record of this one that she (Mary) sat at Jesus’ feet. Has this value in the eyes of the world, or even of Christians in general? Has it in ours? But it was as ointment poured forth to the heart of the Beloved One. We may be active in service, right as all this is in its place, but there is nothing He so values as for us to love to listen to Him. How wonderful that, although He is now exalted on the throne of the Majesty on high, He still looks for the opportunity of speaking to us down here. Are we beyond His care or reach? or outside His interest? Here was no bustling crowd, no activities of service—here was rest even for Him.
The last of the seven addresses to the churches, “Behold I stand at the door and knock. If any man will hear my voice, and will open the door, I will come in to him.” What for? To talk with him! He, when here in this world, had many things to say to His own which they could not bear, and He would have much to say to us if we were ready to listen. The only place to learn His mind for service is at His feet. Service is good, but the Lord said, Mary had chosen the good part. He appreciated and valued Martha’s service as no other could, for He never slights or fails to value service in its place. He is listening for the voice that will bid Him enter. May we open to Him!
What was the end of it all? The Lord perhaps had spoken to Mary of His death. When He spoke to His disciples about His decease they wouldn’t have it. But this one had sat at His feet, and because of what she had there learned from Him, she brings out an alabaster box of precious ointment, and pours it on His blessed feet. Let it be ours to be found sitting at His feet, listening to His word.

Son of God Reveals God Himself

It is the Son of God who reveals God Himself, and thus becomes the center of His counsels, the manifestation of His glory, and the object of His ways.

The Spirit of Heaven and That of the World

The one gathers and unites; the other scatters and divides. Get a center on earth, and around it may be those who regard it in one common light; but in this you separate from Christ and those who are His. Let Christ in heavenly glory be really seen by faith, and those who so see Him must by the Spirit’s power be gathered round Him, on ground of God’s word, from which nothing but ignorance or earthliness can keep apart any that are His.

The Spirit's Guiding in What We Say

What appears frankness is not always full openness. What is the Christian part? To say nothing unnecessary on principle; and then one is simple in both. Let the Spirit guide us in all we actually say.


A standard must be a standard for everything; and for this it must be the whole and the perfect record of truth. As this is not in the mind of man, it must be revealed, and this with authority for all, or it is not a rule to which every one is responsible. Otherwise individual responsibility and mutual sense of righteousness are destroyed, and manifest fruits of righteousness cease to be of avail as a test of conduct and fellowship, because there would be no common standard to which they could be brought.

Sufferings for Christ

2 Cor. 4:11. When Paul passed through sufferings destined to break down the flesh, he endured sufferings for Christ. In a sense it is perfection. With us alas! discipline often mixes with it.

Sufferings of Christ

It is in the point of death that the sufferings of Christ meet, whether for righteousness’ sake and that which He underwent in order to sympathy with them when suffering under God’s government, on the one hand, or in atonement, on the other. Christ suffered onward up to death; then He also made atonement for sin. Some of the remnant also may suffer unto death, as faithful under the trials of this government; but then, like Christ, they will obtain a better resurrection. Of course the atoning part is exclusively His.

Sure of Salvation

There is no true sanctification for me, if I am not perfectly sure of my salvation.

Take, Eat

He says to all His own, “Take, eat.” Not, Take thou; because this would bring in individuality, which is never the intent of the Lord’s supper, but the body: communion in the remembrance of Christ, but of Christ in death. In this His love is everything to the heart, and the common blessing of all is in and with Christ. His death separates believers from the world, and as His body we are one with Him who is in heaven.
In the Lord’s supper, therefore, so far from a person eating or drinking for himself alone, it is intended to contemplate the whole body of Christ, save those who may be outside through discipline or self-will, W. K.

The Testimony of the Church

If the church is only a delivered body, it is weak; it must be a delivering one to be a preserved one; because that is the power of God’s presence in Christ. Mark the humblest assembly of saints, or an individual Christian. If there is not energy of positive testimony, which acts on others, there is decline if the church is only a delivered body, it is weak; it must be a delivering one to be a preserved one; because that is the power of God’s presence in Christ. Mark the humblest assembly of saints, or an individual Christian. If there is not energy of positive testimony, which acts on others, there is decline.

That Christ Might Fill All Things

“That Christ might fill all things.” Faith cannot look out on a place which Divine love and righteousness have not filled. He has come down in love, and gone up in righteousness. “Perfecting of the saints” refers to them individually, as “edifying of the body” collectively.

The Church: Power to Heal

The Church ought to be able to heal everything. She is set to be a healer in the earth; but if she fail, God can make it turn to blessing. See the case of the young man whom the disciples could not heal. If they could have healed him, we should never have had that precious token of His grace— “O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you, how long shall I suffer you, bring him to Me.” Yet they ought to have had power to heal him. The more the Lord’s grace and power was manifested, the more they ought to have been able to use it for His glory. What a wonderful Savior we have to do with!

The Closing Verses of Scripture

The closing verses of Holy Scripture bring before us the verity of Christ’s speedy coming, “Behold, I come quickly.” Our blessedness meanwhile is to keep the words of the prophecy of this book (Rev. 22:7). “My reward is with me,” says this Coming One, “to give to each as his work shall be” (ver. 12). And again (ver. 20), “Surely I come quickly,” consummating His own joy indeed, and He counts upon our hearts’ response and welcome, “Even so, come Lord Jesus,”

The Disciples

The disciples ought to have been able to use the power of Christ against the enemy. Their being unable to profit by it, becomes an occasion for judgment. Since it was so, it was therefore useless for Christ to remain on the earth. “how long shall I be with you, and suffer you?” and so it is with the church

The Double Position of the Son of Man

Note, in Matt. 26 (besides his being the Christ, the Son of God as come among the Jews on the earth, living amongst men,) the double position of the Son of man—sitting at the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

The Double Power and Effect of Christ's Death

In Matt. 27:51, 52, we have the double power and effect of Christ’s death, the rent veil or access to God, and the resurrection.

The French Revolution

The working of the mere will of man, under the impulse of evil, brought about the French revolution. The Bible was not there as a restraining power, nor as formative of human inquiry and thought. Superstition and a hollow state of society came down with a tremendous crash, and all reverence for God was buried in its ruins

The Historical Church

The mystery of lawlessness was working (2 Thess. 2:7) in the apostles’ days. Paul withstood it in the energy of the Holy Spirit; but after his departure that power was gone. The historical church never had the two great fundamental principles of Christianity, viz. perfection in Christ (“by one offering He hath perfected forever”), and the presence and leading power of the Holy Spirit down here. These were supplanted by the sacraments and the clergy. J.N.D.

The Sealing of the Spirit

To correspondents: The sealing of the spirit is connected with the gospel of our salvation. This makes what has perplexed many pretty clear. It is when the gospel of simple salvation is received that we are sealed: so indeed it was with Cornelius.

The Veil Not Rent Until Christ's Death

Till Christ’s death the veil was not rent, the holiest unapproachable. There was knowledge more or less clear of a redeemer—of a personal redeemer to come; of God’s favor toward those that walked with Him, and the confidence of faith in Him and His promises. But there was no such knowledge of sin as led to the consciousness of exclusion from God’s presence as a present state, nor of such a putting of it away as reconciled us fully and forever to God by its efficacy, and brought us to Him.

They Are Not of the World

The church was called to be a witness for God. In the first of the apocalyptic assemblies, this had ceased to be for his glory. In the last of them, when the church has entirely lost its character as such, Christ, in the fullest way, presents himself, before taking the inheritance, and takes up the character which should have been maintained, viz., the “amen, the faithful and true witness.” then a total change follows. The throne of God is seen in heaven: Christ, as the slain lamb, is revealed as the object round whom all is clustered, and we are admitted to see the preparatory government, not of the churches, of the world in view of the kingdom which Christ is about to introduce in power and glory.

They Are Not of the World

This sweeps away every principle of conduct which cannot connect us with the world rejected Christ. The world hates what is heavenly, neither can it bear the testimony of what it has done. We must be content to be despised and find Christ such a portion as to have no ambition of being anything where he was nothing. “How can ye believe who receive honor one of another?” our practical calling is to manifest the spirit and temper of Christ.

Thinking on Christ Only

A man likes thinking badly of himself, ay, and saying so, better than not thinking of himself at all, and simply displaying Christ’s gracious life by thinking on Him only. We have to judge ourselves; but our right state is thinking of the Lord alone

This Last Scene

Matt. 26-28
A very sure highway from our rains to His glories has been cast up and we are to tread it boldly.
All are present in this last scene; God, angels, disciples, man, Satan—proving themselves. And all get their answer. God in righteousness is satisfied—angels get fresh light and joy—feeble, failing disciples are restored—man is set aside as incurably apostate—Satan, with death, is defeated and spoiled.

Three Things Necessary to Fellowship

Three things are necessary to fellowship:-
1st. There must be the knowledge of sin forgiven; the certainty that faith alone imparts, that we are righteous before God. Any doubt or fear about this hinders.
2ndly. There must be the new nature or life in Christ.
3rdly. That nature must be strengthened, brought into exercise, by the powerful actings of the Spirit of God to quicken into such communion.

Time for Action

Matt. 26:46.—When the enemy is at hand, it is the time for action, not for watching and praying.

Time of Labor, Not Rest

This is the time of labor, not of rest; not rest to be looked for here and now, but laboring to enter into that rest. O how blessed the day of its appearing after toil! It is indeed long patience, but patience is the word; and while we are patient, the Lord makes it short.

Time of the Gentiles

Is there not a time of the Gentiles which is to be fulfilled, when blindness will depart from Israel? And is there not then in Deut. 30, an explicit promise of their restoration? But is it expressly stated the Apostle Paul left it a conditional assertion, that the Gentiles would be cutoff, that God would plead against all nations? Is not the apostasy of the Gentile profession as plainly stated as possible and its consequences? Men may say that this applied to Popery; but it is called “the vine of the earth,” a figure well known in scripture as importing the dispensation of the church generally. And the unclean spirits who are to gather the kings of the earth do not gather them against the Lamb by the instrumentality of Popery only, but of the love of power and atheism too. Popery is at most but one of these principles which are to be the means of bringing men to judgment.

To Be Cast Down

To be cast down is not wrong, but it is so when the being cast down causes distrust.

To See God

In reading 1 John 4:12-15, notice that if no man hath seen God at any time, yet faith enables the apostle, and should enable us, to say, we have seen God; and so seeing Him in the gift of Jesus, we can testify too.

Trusting God to Foil Satan

“The whole world wondered after the beast.” I ought not to wonder about evil. I ought to trust God to foil Satan.

Truth and Error

There is no equality in an alliance between truth and error; since, by this very alliance, truth ceases to be truth, and error does not thereby become truth. The only thing lost is the authority and obligation of the truth.

Truth as to the Spirit

The truth as to the Spirit is perhaps the most important practically, and the most characteristic of Christianity, not as to foundation, but as to state and power of all in scripture.

Two Classes in Psalms

I think we shall find all through the Psalms too classes: one, the faith which looks to God and trusts Him, and pleads for an answer in righteousness; and the other, the cry out of distress and in distress of heart under it, though the principle of faith be in the cry. I remember attributing the former more to Christ, the latter to the remnant. Now in the spirit and character of them this is true; but the exclusive distribution to one or the other is wrong. They are all the remnant, only in two different aspects, and one more fully and directly the Spirit of Christ, though in Gethsemane He did cry in distress to God.
Baptizing with the Holy Ghost is never, that I am aware, used of an individual; nor is Christ so baptized. He is anointed of God, and sealed by God the Father. Now the company of disciples were baptized in Pentecost, and all by one Spirit baptized into one body. It was power embracing in one all. But the individual is anointed and sealed of God, as established by Him in Christ, sealed for the day of redemption, marked out surely by God, has the anointing of the Holy One. Note here that the general reception of the Holy Ghost by the converts in Samaria is before the manifestation of the wickedness of Simon’s heart. Here the above remark becomes important.

Typical Meaning of the Tabernacle Metals

Typical Meaning of the Tabernacle Metals.—Gold is intrinsic righteousness in God’s nature—that which we approach in Him. I do not mean His essence, but what we approach. We come to the gold within in virtue of the blood, which not only introduces us but has glorified God perfectly as to sin.
Brass is the judgment of righteousness as applied to men. Hence the altar of burnt-offerings was of brass, as the laver was of brass; one judging sin in a sacrifice, the other by the word. It marked the immutable nature of that judgment. God who could not bear sin must deal with it. The sockets of the pillars of the court were of brass. The evil, measured by what man ought to be for God, has been put away on the brazen altar. This purges the conscience, as the blood on the mercy-seat brings into the light of God Himself.
But the fillets and hooks were of silver, as what gave stability was judgment or Gilgal work. The curtains separated the profane from the holy (i.e., God’s) people, as with Him apart from the world at large. The hooks on the pillars, and the fillets were silver: this seems to be grace as displayed in man, God’s grace; as the brass was God’s judgment firm and immutable. So did grace secure, but it was the ornament. Judgment in God’s ways secures, but it is its stability and as the foundation of God’s immutableness. Grace in fact is what all hangs on in its actual maintenance.

Understanding O. T. Scriptures

The great hindrance to our understanding the Old Testament scriptures is our putting ourselves into them. God’s faithfulness, of course, is always true; but when the Spirit of prophecy comes to speak of the people, and state of the people, e.g., hiding the face from them, we know they do not apply literally to us. He does not hide from us—His face is shining on us in Christ. Does He hide His face from Christ? We may be in a sad state of soul and not enjoy: that is another thing. We lose our place if we put ourselves in the place of the Jew. We have the Spirit of God dwelling in us, and He is the Spirit of adoption.

Union With Christ

Man could know or see neither the divine person nor the divine glory, without being partaker of the divine nature. And this is what we are brought into—union with Christ in resurrection-life, and the power of the holy ghost—not the poor thing of the renewal of good qualities, but the Son Himself making us share his own things!


Popish unity attaches Christ to unity, and hence may and does legalize with His name every corruption and evil. Christianity attaches unity to Christ, and therefore gives it all the character of grace and truth that is in Him—gives it all its excellence.

Unity and Christ

Popery attaches Christ to unity, and hence may and does legalize with his name every corruption and evil. Christianity attaches unity to Christ, and therefore gives it all the character of grace and truth that is in him—gives it all his excellence

Unity of Christians

It is one of the great questions of the day, is the unity of Christians to be founded on love for the truth’s sake, or on indifference to it?

The Unity of Christ's Body

The unity of Christ’s body being the ground assumed, all Christians have, in principle, a title to be there, the Lord’s name being maintained as to doctrine and discipline. If you insist on a certain standard of intelligence beyond Christ, before receiving them, you prove that you are not intelligent, and you abandon your own (i.e. God’s) principle. At the same time, it is all well that young converts should wait; it would do them no harm. The great requisite for receiving, is satisfaction as to membership of the body of Christ...the principle is “one body and one Spirit;” the resource, now that all is confusion and inconsistency, is Matt. 18:20. J. N. D

The Veil Rent

Christ’s work being accomplished, the veil is rent, full grace goes out to the world, and those who believe have boldness to draw near into the holiest. It is no more a people without, with priests drawing a little nearer on their behalf, under the law which made nothing perfect.

Walking in the Light

The world is selfish. The flesh, the passions, the desires of the mind, seek their own gratification. But, if I walk in the light, self has no place there; I can enjoy the light and all I see in it with another, and there is no jealousy. If another possess a carnal thing, I am deprived of it. In the light, we have fellow-possession of that which God gives, and we enjoy it the more by enjoying it together

Walking With God

We cannot walk out of darkness but by walking in the light, that is, with God; and God is love: and were He not, we could not walk there.

Walking Worthily

There are three measures given in this form of the Christian’s walk: worthily of God Who calls us to His own kingdom and glory (1 Thess. 2:12); worthily of the Lord unto all pleasing (Col. 1:10); and worthily of the calling wherewith we were called (that is, the Holy Spirit dwelling in the church, Eph. 2, developed as it is after the end of chap. 3).

We Beheld His Glory

Did ever man see such lowliness as was manifested in the Lord Jesus? Faith, and only faith, can say, “We beheld His glory.” A glory never before seen on earth, not now visiting, but dwelling amongst us, not a creature, but the Creator “Emmanuel, God with us.”

We Know

“We know” is a technical expression for the portion of Christians—known to them as such. “We know that the law is spiritual;” “we know that the Son of God is come;” and so on.

What Christ Is

The great truth now is what Christ is. At the reformation it was His work. If He reveals what He is, it is but to add, “I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it.” Here is liberty. It is an open door for all blessing.

What God Is to Us

God is to us “the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” as much in what He does not give, as in what He does.

What Is the Church?

In order to judge what the church is, we must know, and be able to distinguish, the truth and the living God whose presence is there.

What Proves There Is a God

What proves there is a God proves that we cannot know or conceive an idea of Him—that is, that there must be a cause for what exists. There is a God; for nothing can exist without a cause; but that is not God. I am sure there is a God; for I am sure that what exists cannot exist without a cause; but what cannot exist without a cause is not God. It is, after all, only saying that we are finite. I must believe that He is. The impossibility of conceiving existence without a cause (which proves there is a God) is the impossibility of conceiving Him who is that cause and exists without one.

What the Grace of God Does

It is the nature of the grace of God, not merely to be gracious, but to produce abundant blessings toward, and in, and for, those for whom it is active and works.

When a Pause Is Needed

Jacob had seventeen years in Egypt ere he was called hence; Paul was called up from the midst of his labors. (2 Tim. 4) It is a bad symptom of previous ways when a pause is needed, like that in Egypt to Jacob.

The Whole Truth

It is to be remarked as to scripture, that Paul declares his doctrine (i.e., of the church) completes it (Col. 1:25), and that (Gal. 1:8, 9) he will not have any gospel besides. It would be ἔτερον, not ἄλλο. Thus we are certain to have the whole truth. The Spirit may apply in grace, may practically develop, so as through him to judge all by.

Why Should We Think We Possess a Perfect Mind?

Why am I to think we are arrived, just in our day, at the perfection of the human mind, so that we are exactly right now? The age in which Christianity was introduced or made progress among the Gentiles, was very far from a superstitious age. Witness the various forms of mind—the Philos, the Celsuses, the porphyries, the Alexandrian school of Neo-Platonists, the Lucians, and others, whose reputation is publicly known, to say nothing of earlier Grecian philosophy, which led the way, the theory that man’s mind is the measure of revelation, and of what God ought to be, makes truth and error, and the very character of what God ought to be, depend on the age a man lives in.

Will, and Conscience, God's Way

We hardly realize what a dreadful thing it is to have a will. To have none will not make us the less decided. On the contrary, it is when we see a thing to be the Lord’s will that there is true and thorough decision. But we are often weak when it is a question of the Lord’s glory, and strong when it concerns ourselves.
- - -
In itself learning is a hindrance to the knowledge of God, though His grace does as it pleases. It hinders the knowledge of Scripture and of God’s mind in it, because it leads the mind to another access of approach to these things, not the conscience, which is God’s way. Learning may meet learning, and if one man give false, another may meet it by the true; but it cannot meet Scripture, and there is no learning in the conscience but that we are sinners. The mind is the subject of the Scripture, not the Scripture the subject of the mind. In God’s way only have the Scripture to itself, and it meets all learning and needs none. God may give power to apprehend it to one more than another; but it meets everything the proud heart of man can desire, and wants nothing else, but in spirit judges and divides all things to the thoughts and intents of the heart. This is applicable thoroughly and everywhere. What, for instance, has impeded the intelligence of prophecy so much as mixing up human history with it?

"Wilt Thou Be Made Whole?"

Ordinances and ministry witnessed mercy, but the Son dispenses it in His own way: no delay, no rivalry, no fear, or doubt, but “wilt thou be made whole?” It was Galatianism to pray about Bethesda after Christ had been in Jerusalem. Such is plentiful still. It is always a question thus between Christ and the sinner in John. Christ settles all in grace alone and effectually.

Without Christ We Have Nothing

If we have Christ, we have all—without Christ we have nothing. You can be happy without money, without liberty, without parents, and without friends, if Christ is yours. If you have not Christ, neither money, nor liberty, nor parents, nor friends can make you happy. Christ, with a chain, is liberty; liberty without Christ is a chain. Christ without anything is riches—all things, without Christ, is poverty indeed.

Worldly Religions

A worldly religion, which forms a system in which the world can walk, and in which the religious element is adapted to man on the earth, is the denial of Christianity.

The World's History in Scripture

I admit scripture ought to be accurate in everything, without going beyond the forms of knowledge of those to whom it was addressed at the time, or it would not have been suited to them. God does condescend to suit his instruction to us; as, if we know his grace, we might expect he would. And where is the book which, addressed, in ages earlier than otherwise known history, to a despised people, has stood the test of increasing light as the Bible has on every point? Take the Koran, and see the nonsense that is found in it: yet this was in the seventh century. Take the fathers. Take any book pretending to give an account of what are called fabulous ages, and see how the marvelous prevails; the little grains of fact to be picked out of these large stories; the prodigality of marvelous nonsense, from which we must, in a mythical way, conjecture some historical idea (if there is any), the only effect of which is, when we have discovered it, to show that what we have as plain history in scripture is the true origin of the distorted fables we meet with in profane accounts and ceremonies—ceremonies of which the vulgar know nothing but the outside, as the religion of their fathers; but which show, when investigated, that what we have in scripture is really the world’s history—is that which, however distorted, has formed everywhere the basis of the whole system which knit them together as people, and separated them as people too; which acted on their fears and conscience, and impressed their imagination—had been the origin of their different religions, which were but the conscience of having had to say to God in these gradually forgotten wonders of which Satan had possessed himself, to acquire the veneration and govern the lusts of those who had utterly departed from, and forgotten, the true God who had wrought them

Writings of Paul and of John

The writings of Paul bring out the doctrines of Christ; those of John, the person of the Lord. God is light and God is love.


There may be great confidence in devotedness, as with Peter, and yet a want of acquaintance with God’s mind. Where affection is real, it is instinctively just. We have to see that our zeal for the Lord is not in the flesh.