2nd May

Written by Steven Black on 02/05/2018. Posted in Devotionals

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?”
Romans 8:35

Be this never forgotten, that if we have ever been brought near to the Lord Jesus Christ by the actings of living faith, there never can be any final, actual separation from him. In the darkest moments, in the dreariest hours, under the most painful exercises, the most fiery temptations, there is, as with Jonah in the belly of hell, a looking again toward the holy temple. There is sometimes a sigh, a cry, a groan, a breathing forth of the heart’s desire to “know Him, and the power of his resurrection;” that he would draw us near unto himself, and make himself precious to our souls. And these very cries and sighs, groanings and breathings, all prove that whatever darkness of mind, guilt of conscience, or unbelief we may feel, there is no real separation.

It is in grace as it is in nature; the clouds do not blot out the sun; it is still in the sky, though they often intercept his bright rays. And so with the blessed Sun of righteousness; our unbelief, our ignorance, our darkness of mind, our guilt of conscience, our many temptations these do not blot out the Sun of righteousness from the sky of grace. Though thick clouds come between him and us and make us feel as though he was blotted out, or at least as if we were blotted from his remembrance, yet, through mercy, where grace has begun the work, grace carries it on: “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:6).

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869

1st May

Written by Steven Black on 01/05/2018. Posted in Devotionals

“I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you;
seek, and ye shall find;
knock, and it shall be opened unto you.”
Luke 11:9

Wherever there is true prayer, there is importunity. Wherever the Lord brings trials upon the soul, he pours out upon it the spirit of grace and supplications. He thus encourages and enables the soul to be importunate with him. The blessings and benefits of perseverance and importunity in prayer the Lord has brought prominently before us in two parables—one, of the man in bed with his children, who would not get up and relieve his friend, but yet was overcome by his importunity; and the other, of the woman, who had a cause at issue, and went before the judge, who feared not God, neither regarded man; yet by her continual going to him, overcame him at last by her importunity (Luke 11:5-8; 18:1-7).

Thus importunity and perseverance form the very feature of true prayer. If the child of God has a burden—if he is labouring under a strong temptation—if his soul is passing through some pressing trial—he is not satisfied with merely going to a throne of grace and coming away. There is at such times and seasons, as the Lord enables, real importunity; there is a holy wrestling; there are fervent desires; there are unceasing groans; there is a labouring to enter into rest; there is a struggling after deliverance; there is a crying unto the Lord, until he appears and manifests himself in the soul.

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869

29th February

Written by Steven Black on 29/02/2016. Posted in Devotionals

“And has put all things under his feet.”
Ephesians 1:22

How vast, how numerous, how complicated are the various events and circumstances which attend the Church of God here below, as she travels onward to her heavenly home! But if all things as well as all persons are put under Jesus’ feet, there cannot be a single circumstance over which he has not supreme control. Everything in providence and everything in grace are alike subject to his disposal. There is not a trial or temptation, an affliction of body or soul, a loss, a cross, a painful bereavement, a vexation, grief or disappointment, a case, state or condition, which is not put under Jesus’ feet.

He has sovereign, supreme disposal over all events and circumstances. As possessed of infinite knowledge he sees them, as possessed of infinite wisdom he can manage them, and as possessed of infinite power he can dispose and direct them for our good and his own glory. How much trouble and anxiety should we save ourselves, could we firmly believe, realize, and act on this! If we could see by the eye of faith that every foe and every fear, every difficulty and perplexity, every trying or painful circumstance, every looked-for or unlooked-for event, every source of care, whether at present or in prospect, are all, as put under his feet, at his sovereign disposal, what a load of anxiety and care would be often taken off our shoulders!

18th November

Written by Ian on 17/11/2013. Posted in Devotionals

“And he led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a city of habitation.” Psalm 107:7

“He led them forth.” Forth out of the world—forth out of sin—forth out of a profession— forth out of a name to live—forth out of everything hateful to his holy and pure eyes. “To go to a city of habitation.” They had no city to dwell in here below; but they were journeying to a city of habitation above, whose walls and bulwarks are salvation, and whose gates are praise; where there are eternal realities to be enjoyed by the soul; where there is something stable and eternal; something to satisfy all the wants of a capacious and immortal spirit, and give it that rest which it never could find while wandering here below. If we have a city here, we want no city above; and if we have a city above, we want no city here.
This then must be our state and case; either to be pilgrims, journeying onwards, through troubles, to things above, or taking up our abode below; seeking heaven here, or heaven hereafter; resting upon the world, or resting upon the Lord; panting after the things of time, or panting after the things of eternity; satisfied in self, or satisfied only in Christ. One of the two must be our state and case. The Lord decide it clearly in the hearts of his people that they are on his side; and give us to know and feel that our very restlessness and inability to find food and shelter in the things of time and sense, are leading us more earnestly and believingly to seek after the things that have reality in them; that finding no city to dwell in here below, we may press forward to be manifestly enjoying testimonies of being citizens of
that city which is above, “which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God!”

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869