Christadelphians Talk about various subjects concerning True Bible Teaching.
Christadelphians Talk about various subjects concerning True Bible Teaching.
Thought for January 26th..'God is our refuge and strength...'
"GOD IS OUR REFUGE AND STRENGTH" Jan 26
Just as parts of the Psalms, such as 22 v.1 and 16 v,10,11 foreshadowed events and sayings in the mortal life of our Lord, so Psalms 46 and 47 we read today can be seen as portraying the awesome events at and after the time of his second coming. The overview of those events which these Psalms provide, show how vital it will be for us to possess and “to show the same earnestness to have the full assurance of hope until the end … imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” [Heb.6 v.11,12]
The opening of Psalm 46 should be memorized and become part of our daily thoughts; “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way … though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble …” [v.1-3] “The nations rage, the kingdoms totter …” [v.6] But in the midst of this awesome upheaval , “… the city of God, the holy habitation of the Most High (is seen) … God will help her when morning dawns.” [v.4,5]
Until that dawning, the darkness of human depravity and folly will dominate life on earth. But with the dawning to a new day which the return of Christ will bring will come a sober reflection on God’s judgments: “Come behold the works of the LORD, how he has brought desolations on the earth, He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth …” [v.8,9] How wonderful! How awesome! But as it becomes more and more evident that God’s judgments are starting today how vital it will be that “God is our refuge and strength” and for us to “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations …” [v.10]
At that time, may we, by God’s grace, be part of the action described in Psalm 47 “ Clap your hands, all peoples! Shout to God with loud songs of joy! For the LORD, the Most High is to be feared, a great king over the earth. He subdued peoples under us, and nations …” [v.1-3] If God is truly our refuge now – then, by his grace, that will be our experience.
Thought for January 25th..'.You are the most handsome of the sons of men...'
"YOU ARE THE MOST HANDSOME ..." Jan 25
After reading Psalm 45 we meditated on what makes a person handsome. As the Psalm proceeds it becomes evident that several verses are prophetical of our Lord. Verses 6 & 7 are quoted in Hebrews 1 v.8,9. In the Psalm they read, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever: the sceptre of your kingdom is a sceptre of uprightness; you have loved righteousness and hated wickedness. Therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions”
This puts the relationship between the Almighty and his Son in its true perspective. But are verses 2 & 3 also prophetical of Jesus? “You are the most handsome of the sons of men; grace is poured upon your lips; therefore God has blessed you forever. Gird your sword on your thigh O mighty one, in your splendour and majesty.”
This is in contrast to Isaiah 53 which is so evidently prophetical of the Lord, that “he has no form or majesty that we should look to him, and no beautythat we should desire him.” [v.2]
The solution to this contrast is two-fold, the words that follow in the Psalm, “you are the most handsome” are - “grace is poured upon your lips therefore God has …” This reminds us of Peter’s words, “let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a meek and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.” [1 Pet. 3 v.4] God will reward this kind of beauty.
We read yesterday how – because “Joseph was handsome in form and appearance” [Gen 39 v.6] it proved to be to his disadvantage – but today we saw a contrast when “they quickly brought him out of the pit.” [41 v14] and when he had shaved and had new clothes he was brought before Pharaoh.
Exalted to a position of honour before Pharaoh, did not these developments foreshadow in type, first the humiliation and then the exaltation of Christ. They also foreshadow the experience of true believers who, especially in certain parts of the world, struggle with opposition against the true way of life in Christ. This opposition is spreading as, even in this country, the Government is more inclined to pass permissive laws and seek to punish those who ignore them and even speak against them.
Paul’s words to the Romans should be engraved on our minds: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing, you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable …” [12 v.2] Our daily reading of God’s word enables us to properly perform the “testing” and become “handsome” in mind and be ready for the time when our Lord will “gird (his) sword”..
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Thought for January 24th..'.Until that day when i drink it new with you in my father's Kingdom'
"UNTIL THAT DAY WHEN ..." Jan. 24
Our Matthew reading (ch. 26) recounts the agonies of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane and his prayers. “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless not as I will, but as you will.” [v.39]. Jesus made his “will” conform to his Father’s will. And what of our “will”?
Peter was to later write of how Christ, in his commitment to his Father’s will “suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might followin his steps.” [1 Pet. 2 v.21]
Before Jesus and his disciples went into the garden of Gethsemane, Jesus directed them to prepare for a Passover meal on “the first day of unleavened bread” (v.17) Then we read, “Now as they were eating Jesus took bread …” - next “he took the cup …” [v.26-27] and spoke of a “covenant … for many for the forgiveness of sins” [v.28] The disciples must have been perplexed at his words, but there is no indication they asked him to explain.
But this takes our minds forward to meditate on the record in Acts 2 and the events on the day of Pentecost and “the breaking of bread” [v.42] that then followed. With what intense meaning would the disciples and all who had just been baptised have taken part! We presume the disciples would earlier have done so after his resurrection and ascension, although there is no record of this – we meditate on the intensity of meaning as they did! How does it compare with ours?
The disciple would also remember that their Master said, after the command to “Drink, all of you” that he then said, “I will not drink again of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”[v.29] This event is beyond our comprehension – just as what was about to happen was beyond theirs.
Could someone like the Apostle Paul grasp the wonder to come? Take note of his words in 1 Corinthians. “ ‘What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him – these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the deep things of God.” [2 v.9,10]
But for us “until that day when …”- and our faith is turned to sight and the Spirit which is “the powers of the age to come.” [Heb. 6 v.5] is poured out on the faithful who will reign with him – may we be like the Thessalonians whose “faith is growing abundantly” [2 Thess. 1 v.3] to create adequate oil in our lamps as this world becomes an ever darker place.
Thought for January 23rd 'Watch therefore for you know neither thr day nor the Hour..'.
"YOU KNOW NEITHER THE DAY, NOR THE HOUR" Jan 23
Today we have 3 parables in our chapter (25) in Matthew which all convey fundamentally the same lesson. The fact that there are three shows how extremely important the message is. Those who read the Bible regularly will know them well; we must beware of knowing them too well, lest the message loses its power to stir our conscience.
The first one is of the 10 virgins; half are called “wise.” What made them “wise” as they waited in the darkness for the cry, “Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.” The wise had brought a reserve of oil for their lamps. What does the oil represent? Our conclusion is – it represents “faith”, how terrible to run short of or completely out of faith when the midnight cry is heard. Faith cannot be second-hand, it cannot be replenished in a moment.
The second parable is about talents the Master gives to his servants to use while he is away. They represent, we suggest, the abilities and opportunities to represent the Master in his absence. The final parable is of sheep and goats and of “his glorious throne” when the Master returns. Then, and only then, will it be made plain for all to see which are sheep and which are goats – in the Middle East they look very similar.
The goats will be blind to their failings, “Lord” they will say “when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?” [v.44] And he will say, “Truly … as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.”[v.45] Put as simply as possible – this is telling us – we are either Christ-centred – or self-centred.
We must ask ourselves – am I labouring effectively in his vineyard – or not. It seems to many of our age group (as great grandparents) that the Lord is delaying his coming – but the reason is that the final ingathering is not yet quite complete (see Luke 14 v.22-23 “still there is room. And the Master said, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges … that my house may be filled”)
So let Christ’s challenging words at the end of his parable about the virgins ‘illuminate’ our minds “Watch therefore, for you know neither the day not the hour” This request is more important than ever – for the storm clouds illuminating human helplessness are greater than ever – and the wise virgins need to be together whenever they can. But what are they to “watch” for? We will read tomorrow of Jesus in the garden with his disciples and his request, “…watch with me … Watch and pray …the spirit indeed is willing but the flesh is weak.”” [ch.26 v.40,41] Meditate on the kind of watching Jesus was referring to.
The days of the Kingdom our glorious vision - Michael Owen
Given at the 2007 Rugby bible prophecy day (UK)
Watch the video version here...
The Return of Jesus Christ and the Judgement Study 5: 'THE MILLENIUM. _ Bro Matt Norton
Bro Matt NortonJesus will return to the earth Jesus’ life began when he was born about 2,000 years ago. He willingly offered himself as a sacrifice for sin. Because he was sinless, God raised him from the dead and he is now in heaven with his Father. He will return from there as King of the world.