Jesus Christ is perfect theology. (Bill Johnson, youtube video, “Bringing Heaven to Earth”)
What is wrong with a Christian who possesses no spirit of prayer? No power with God? He is an infidel. (Charles Finney, “Power from on High” Chapter, the Spirit of Prayer)
The training of the disciples was the presence of Christ. (Andrew Murray, “The Secret of Christianity”)
The Gospel always gives life to the receiver and death to the giver. (Jackie Pulinger, youtube video “Go”)
It is our privilege and duty to live above innocent amusements. (Charles Finney, “Power from on High” chapter Innocent Amusements)
Entertainment is the devil’s substitute for joy. The less joy you have the more entertainment you need. (Leonard Ravenhill, audio messages)
The more man reaches for material things on the outside the more he points to his bankruptcy on the inside. (Leonard Ravenhill, audio messages)
I would rather feel contrition of heart then be able to define it. (Thomas A. Kempis, “The Imitation of Christ”)
If a commission from an earthly king is considered and honor. How can a commission from a heavenly King be considered a sacrifice? (David Livingston)
The only thing that pleases God is what He does Himself. (Robert Gladstone, audio message “In the Light of Eternity”)
Anti-Christ is not only that which is opposed to Christ, but that which is seeking to be something like Him, yet not Him. (Art Katz, audio message “And they Crucified Him”)
Nothing is more likely to lead to error or heresy than the focus on part rather than the whole. (David Ravenhill, audio message “Worship”)
The idolatrous religions are those that give you a small measure of religious satisfaction yet allow you to retain the Lordship of your own life. (Art Katz, audio message “And They Crucified Him”)
Beloved, for the sake of a lost and dying world, pay any price, get God’s power and set the prisoners free. (John G. Lake, Dr. Michael L. Brown told me that was his favorite quote)
There are a thousand parts of our hearts that need softening a thousand times a day. (Smith Wigglesworth, “The Wigglesworth standard”)
We will get to doctrinal differences once we have exhausted the riches of Jesus Christ. (Frank Viola, audio message “Essential Ingredients”)
Now is the time where we either seize the moment or look back with ever lasting shame that we missed it. (Dr. Michael L. Brown, audio message, “Holy Desperation”)
Can you sit and watch t.v. while your family goes to hell? (David Wilkerson, audio message “A Call to Anguish”)
If God removed His Spirit from the Church today 90 percent of church activities would continue on. (Leonard Ravenhill, audio messages)
Why do you call me Lord but do not do what I say? (Jesus Christ, Luke 6.46)
One of these days we will get sick and tired of the spiritual bankruptcy that we live in and the joke that our lives often are and we will get serious with God. (Dr. Michael L. Brown, audio message “John G. Lake” Giants of the Faith series)
Never let the means of worship eclipse the object of worship. (David Ravenhill, audio message “Worship”)
You want to know how to know Christ? Put everything else away and go after Him. (Robert Gladstone, audio message “Crucified with Christ”)
As the earthly tabernacle was the copy of the heavenly so the Christian is to be the copy of the Christ. (David Popovici, text message 11.06.09)
The fruit of the Holy Spirit is determined by one principle alone; total loss of self. (Watchman Nee)
You can go to hell with the “gifts of the Spirit” but not the fruit of the Spirit. (David Popovici, phone conversation 11.10.09)
Never assume someone is right with God. (Stephen L. Hill, Revival 1999)
Christ’s cross is Christ’s way to Christ’s crown. (William Penn, No Cross No Crown)
Anyone who is not bowed down beneath the cross has yet to see it. (Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Eveneing Devotional)
We have substituted organizing for agonizing and equipment for endowment. (Leonard Ravenhill, audio messages)
…we should represent religion as it really is-as living above the world, as consisting in a heavenly mind, as that which gives an enjoyment so spiritual and heavenly as to render the low pursuits and joys of worldly men disagreeable and repulsive. (Charles Finney, Power from on High, chapter Innocent Amusements)
It is so hard to see when my eyes are on me. (Keith Green, song “I Pledge My Head to Heaven)
Humility is the blossom of which death to self is the perfect fruit. (Andrew Murray, Humility chapter Humility and Death to Self)
It is a sad stumbling block to the unsaved to see professing Christians seeking pleasure or happiness from this world. (Charles Finney, Power from on High, chapter Innocent Amusements)
Give therefore place for Christ and deny entrance to all others. (Thomas A. Kempis, Imitation of Christ)
We slander God by our very eagerness to work for Him without knowing Him. (Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest)
The problem with Christians is not that they don’t love Jesus, it is that they don’t love only Jesus. “Solomon, loved the Lord but…”(Eric Gilmour)
Every seemingly small compromise serves to remove us that much further from the Spirit of Truth until the holy dove departs, and we go on, not even realizing that He has left. (Art Katz, The Spirit of Truth)
The lack of obedience in our lives breaks down our praying…Disobedient living produces extremely poor praying. Disobedience shuts the door of the prayer closet. It bars the way to the Holy of Holies. No man can pray-really pray-who does not obey. (E. M. Bounds, The Necessity of Prayer, Prayer and Full Surrender)
Do not we rest in our day too much on the arm of the flesh? Cannot the same wonders be done now as of old? Do not the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth still to show Himself strong on behalf of those who put their trust in Him? Oh, that God would give me more practical faith in Him! Where is the Lord God of Elijah? He is waiting for Elijah to call on Him. (James Gilmour)
Be sure to look to your secret duty; keep that up whatever you do. The soul cannot prosper in the neglect of it…It is secret trading that enriches the Christian. Let prayer be the key of the morning and the bolt at night. The best way to fight against sin is to fight it on our knees. (Philip Henry)
the unalterable basis of an open heaven is a grave, and a crisis at which you come to an end of your own self-life. It is the crisis of real experimental identification with Christ in His death, not now for your sins, but as you. Your open heaven depends on that. (T. Austin Sparks, “The School of Christ”)
God can depend on consecrated men. God can afford to commit Himself to those who have fully committed themselves to Him in prayer. He who gives all to God will get all from God. Having given all to God, he can claim all that God has for him…The prayer life and the consecrated life are intimate companions. They are Siamese twins, inseparable. Prayer enters into every phase of a consecrated life. A prayerless life that claims consecration is a misnomer, false, counterfeit. Consecration is really the setting apart of oneself to a life of prayer. It means not only to pray, but to pray habitually, and to pray more effectively.
It is the consecrated man who accomplishes most by his praying. God must hear the an wholly given up to Him. God cannot deny the requests of the man who has renounced all claims to himself and who has wholly dedicated himself to God and His service. This act of the consecrated man puts him on praying ground and pleading terms with God. It puts him in reach of God in prayer. It places him where he can get a hold of God, and where he can influence God to do things that He would not otherwise do. (E.M. Bounds, “Essentials of Prayer” chapter Prayer and consecration)
Christianity is not a change of life but an exchange of life.(Eric Gilmour)
Christian, what have you to do with sin? Has it not cost you enough already? Burnt child, will you continue to play with fire? When you have already been between the jaws of the lion, will you step into his den a second time? Have you not had enough of the old serpent? He poisoned you once. Will you play near the hole of the viper and put your hand upon the cobra’s den a second time? Oh do not be so foolish! Did sin ever give you any real pleasure? Did you find solid satisfaction in it? If so, go back to your old drudgery and wear the chain again. But sin never did give you what it promised to bestow. Rather, it deluded you with lies. Do not be snared again. Be free and let the remembrance of your ancient bondage forbid you to enter the net again. Sin is contrary to the designs of eternal love. God desires your purity and holiness. Do not oppose the purpose of your Lord. Christians can never sin cheaply. Transgression destroys peace of mind, obscures fellowship with Jesus, hinders prayer and brings darkness over the soul. Therefore, do not be the slave of sin. (Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Evening)
“We know one thing about a man heading down the road with a cross. He is
not coming back.”
(A.W. Tozer, The Best of Tozer)
“Sensuality is the greatest hindrance in the world to Martyrdom. To face
martyrdom, a Christian must first have crucified lesser affections. He who
is overcome by little degrees of pain will hardly consent to lose his life.”
(Jeremy Taylor, Holy Living)
“God will forgive you but time will never forgive you.”
“We say, “Just confess the Lord and you are in!”
He says, “Not everyone who says to me Lord, Lord will enter the kingdom.”
We say, “Just pray this prayer and it’s done.”
He says, “If anyone would come after me he must deny himself, take up his
cross and follow me.”
We say, “Just come to the alter it will only take a minute!”
He says “make every effort to enter through the narrow door.”
Who do you think is right?”
(Doctor Michael Brown, “How Saved Are We?”)
Any “revelation” from Scripture that doesn’t lead me to an encounter with the person of Jesus Christ, only makes me more religious and equips me to argue with those who disagree. (Bill Johnson, audio messages)
Posted in Featured Articles, Revival & Prayer Tagged with: A.W. Tozer, bill johnson, Charles Finney, Charles Spurgeon, John G. Lake, Keith Green, smith wigglesworth, Watchman Nee
“…. and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.” Acts 4.13b
The true Christian life is not a life of spiritual hand-me-downs in terms of experience. We can be encouraged by other saints, but we cannot live off of their testimonies and stories. We can receive insight from the brethren but we cannot ride their cloaks unto maturity. We can be quickened and challenged by their communion with the Lord but we cannot walk into the holy place by hiding behind their frames. The true life of faith is marked by the presence of God, and a believer’s walk with the Lord is founded upon the reality of actual experience with God in prayer and holy fellowship.
The Lord grants especial manifestations of Himself to the believer who seeks Him. He lavishly gives a freshness of faith, a vibrant love, and a sense of holy awe to the one who pursues Him. Charles Spurgeon gives us the real marks of a manifestation of Christ to the soul:
The Lord Jesus gives special revelations of Himself to His people.
…. Especial manifestations of Christ exercise a holy influence on the believer’s heart. One effect will be humility. If a man says, ‘I have had such-and-such spiritual communications, I am a great man’, he has never had any communion with Jesus at all; for ‘God hath respect unto the lowly: but the proud He knoweth afar off’. He does not need to come near them to know them, and will never give them any visits of love.
Another effect will be happiness; for in God’s presence there are pleasures for evermore.
Holiness will be sure to follow. A man who has no holiness has never had this manifestation.
…. Thus there will be three effects of nearness to Jesus- humility, happiness, and holiness. May God give them to thee, Christian!
(Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Evening, May 12th entry)
This threefold mark upon the life of a Christian is evidence that his soul has enjoyed new and fresh transactions of communion with the Lord. May we forego a stale and categorical Christianity, and seek daily the newness of life that comes from seeing the Lamb of God afresh! And may our lives be marked with His distinctive presence- the sublime realities of humility, happiness, and holiness! Amen!
Posted in The Kingdom of God Tagged with: Charles Spurgeon, courage, holiness, Jesus, Reality, Revelation
“…. he that has seen Me has seen the Father….” -John 14.9
In the October 30th selection of My Utmost for His Highest, Oswald Chambers gives us this awesome thought:
Until we know Jesus, God is a mere abstraction, we cannot have faith in Him; but immediately we hear Jesus say- “he that hath seen Me hath seen the Father,” we have something that is real, and faith is boundless. Faith is the whole man rightly related to God by the power of the Spirit of Jesus Christ.
The darkness that marks ‘god-seeking’ cultures is profounder and more tragic than we know. Even in modern evangelicalism, there is enough of a measure of humanistic thought that in most cases believers remain unbroken over the condition of mankind. If one were to survey the nation of India, for instance, and the number of gods or goddesses men pursue there, it would become clear that the whole of the nation is pursuing “God” as a mere abstraction.
Men will spend weeks standing on one leg, days and sometimes months in fasting, whole nights in meditation and reading of ancient texts, or cut and pierce their bodies in numerous ways, just for the positive sense it gives them in knowing that their souls are bent in a spiritual direction. From one village to the next, their deities change name and form, and most of the time there are multiple gods to worship in each household. There is no spiritual stability, no answer to the problem of sin, no consciousness of God’s holiness and love, but instead the bewildering pursuit of the divine in mere abstractions. Paul did not see these kinds of religious pursuits as valid in any way, stating that they were literally worshiping “demons” whether they knew it or not. (1 Cor. 10.20)
We cannot have faith in God until we have seen His Son for who He is, and believed in Him unto salvation. The nations are groping in darkness, incapable of finding anything but false and fading lights, and not until the Church has penetrated their darkness with the light of truth in Christ will they have any hope at all. The darkness is not bound to idolatry in India, but is the plight of mankind in every culture and in every form of life where Christ has not become the center. Across the board men are seeking their gods in abstraction, be they wooden statues or cars, homes and big screen T.V.’s, and only those who have come into communion with the One true God through the Gospel have the unfading hope of true Light. Only we have stability and certitude about eternity, for it has been shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit, and it is founded upon the revelation that God has given in the Scriptures. Do we dare keep this great light to ourselves?
They must know of His great love. They must know of His power to break the stranglehold of sin and shame. They must know that He has come in the flesh, died, raised, and ascended, and that He’s coming again. They are groping about after “mere abstractions,” when the revelation of God the Father has already been given. They must hear of the Man, Christ Jesus!
How can we live so indifferently, so numbly, so stingily. Have we failed to realize that unless the nations see God through the revelation of the Gospel they will only pursue Him through abstractions, and will fall totally short of the glory of grace altogether? Do we really believe that unless they come into the Gospel they will perish, forever?
We need to be freed from humanistic mixtures and hollow hopes for their progressive improvement, and brought onto the grounds of apostolic certitude. Paul shed blood and tears, took stones in the face and lashes on the back, for the singular purpose of setting forth the Man Christ Jesus to those who were seeking God in mere abstractions. We need the same sight, the same courage, the same burden, the same faith, and the same missionary spirit, or else they perish forever. It’s time to wake up, saints. It’s not a dream. It’s not an option. Woe unto us if we preach not the Gospel.
“If sinners be damned at least let them leap to Hell over our bodies. Let them go with our arms around their knees. Let no one go there unwarned or unprayed for.” -Charles Spurgeon
Posted in The Kingdom of God Tagged with: Charles Spurgeon, Church, demons, holiness, Holy Spirit, India, Jesus Christ, Oswald Chambers, Paul
“If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.” -1 Cor. 13.1-3
Of all the passages of Scripture that have been heavily quoted and inadequately considered, 1 Corinthians 13 must rank in the top ten. Of all the subjects that have been watered down, cheapened, and reduced to humanistic wisdom, the subject of love must be at the top of the list.
What do we know of the kind of love that Paul was calling the saints to pursue, and to what degree are we actually walking in it?
Some time ago, I read through a short biography on a man named Robert C. Chapman (1803-1902). Charles Spurgeon called him “the saintliest man I ever knew,” and his life had a profound effect on many souls, not the least of which was the great pioneer missionary Hudson Taylor.
Though I have been engaged in various forms of ministry for more than a dozen years, I was “knocked off of my chair” when I saw the measure of holy love and compassion that was expressed through his life. The man was immersed in a purity and devotion that was heavenly, and the love that burned in his spirit was evident to all who came into contact with him.
Early in his life, he announced that the Lord had called him to proclaim the Gospel, and many of his friends said, “Robert will never make a preacher.” In response, he exclaimed, “There are many who preach, but not so many who live Christ. My aim shall be to live Christ.”
Chapman grew into a remarkable demonstration of the nature of God, expressing the most supernatural kind of hospitality and kindness, even to religious antagonists in his own congregation. Though many were gripped with prejudices, foul attitudes, and a lack of respect when he took up the pastorate at Ebenezer Chapel, they would be won over to humility and love by the selfless example set forth in the man, R.C. Chapman.
He would regularly house guests in his home, though he was a lifelong bachelor. Visiting missionaries, new converts, or extremely poor souls, would be graced by his Spirit-empowered hospitality. They testified that his house was simple, without excessive furniture and trinkets, but immaculately clean. He esteemed that which God had given him, and took care of it in honor of the Lord and esteem for his guests. He would rise daily at 4:00 a.m. to engage in prayer, adoration, and Scripture meditation. He would say, “It is one thing to read the Bible, choosing something that suits me, and another thing to search it that I may become acquainted with God in Christ.” The fruit of his life showed that he had become intensely “acquainted with God in Christ.”
In later years he would have breakfast ready for his house guests at 7:00 a.m., following his daily devotional time. The joy that marked his life was contagious, and more than once people testified that after spending only a day with the man, they felt as if they had encountered the Son of God Himself.
What do people encounter in me? What have I really learned of His love? Dear saints, I yearn to come into the same reality that was Chapman’s experience.
Paul said that we may speak skillfully with the tongues of men. We may be supernaturally gifted to speak with the tongues of angels. We may have the gift of prophecy, or know all mysteries and knowledge. We may have enough faith to remove mountains. We may give all of our possessions to the poor. We may even give ourselves to martyrdom for an ethical cause. But according to the apostle, we may have or engage in any of these things and still be totally devoid of the love of God which is in Christ Jesus. This is both astounding and frightening.
I don’t want to be a “noisy gong or a clanging cymbal,” friends. I want to commune with the One whose zeal burns like an unquenchable fire. I want to be touched and singed and transformed by the heat of His selfless love.
In Hosea 11.8, the Lord says to Israel, “My heart is turned over within Me, All My compassions are kindled.”
O, that our hearts would be turned over, that our lovelessness would be toppled, our hard-heartedness shattered, and our coldness melted by the compassions of God Himself!
O, to love You as you are, to love righteousness, justice, and compassion, and to love human souls as You do! Give us Your own love, Lord. Catch us up in Your heart, and enable us to be an expression of Your Son in this generation, that our sons and daughters might see your majesty.
Posted in The Kingdom of God Tagged with: Charles Spurgeon, Christ, God, Jesus, love, Paul, purity, Robert C. Chapman, the bible, the Gospel