Showing the state of our nation in the light of God’s Holy Word

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10th August 2020

“And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.” Matthew 28:5

Whatever be our state and case, if it can truly be said of us what the angel said to the women at the sepulchre, “I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified,” we have a divine warrant to believe that “he is gone before us into Galilee. There shall we see him.” He is risen; he has ascended up on high, and “has received gifts for men, yea, for the rebellious also, that the Lord God might dwell among them.” He is now upon the mercy-seat, and he invites and draws poor needy sinners to himself. He says, “Come unto me, all ye that are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” He allows us, he invites us to pour out our heart before him, to shew before him our trouble, to spread our wants at his feet, as Hezekiah spread the letter in the temple. If we seek communion with him, we may and shall tell him how deeply we need him, that without him it is not life to live, and with him not death to die. We shall beg of him to heal our backslidings; to manifest his love and blood to our conscience; to shew us the evil of sin; to bless us with godly sorrow for our slips and falls; to keep us from evil that it may not grieve us; to lead us into his sacred truth; to preserve us from all error; to plant his fear deep in our heart; to apply some precious promise to our soul; to be with us in all our ways; to watch over us in all our goings out and comings in; to preserve us from pride, self-deception, and self-righteousness; to give us renewed tokens of our interest in his finished work; to subdue our iniquities; to make and keep our conscience tender; and work in us everything which is pleasing in his sight. What is communion but mutual giving and receiving, the flowing together of two hearts, the melting into one of two wills, the exchange of two loves—each party maintaining its distinct identity, yet being to the other an object of affection and delight? Have we nothing, then, to give to Christ? Yes, our sins, our sorrows, our burdens, our trials, and above all the salvation and sanctification of our souls. And what has he to give us? What? Why, everything worth having, everything worth a moment’s anxious thought, everything for time and eternity.

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869

9th August 2020

“Unto the upright there ariseth light in the darkness.” Psalm 112:4

We often get into such dark paths, that we seem altogether out of the secret, and feel as if there were no more grace in our souls, than in one altogether dead in trespasses and sins. And whether we look back at the past, or view the present, or turn our eyes to the future, one dark cloud seems to rest upon the whole; nor can we, with all our searching, find to our satisfaction that we have one spark of true religion, or one atom of grace, or one grain of vital godliness, or any trace that the Spirit of God has touched our consciences with his finger. Now, when we are in this dark, benighted state, we want light; we want the blessed Sun of righteousness to arise; we want the south wind to blow a heavenly gale, and drive the mists away; we want the clouds to part, and the light of God’s countenance to shine into our souls, so as to shew us where we are, and what we are, and make it clear, that base and vile as we are, yet that we are interested in the love of the Father, the blood of the Son, and the teachings of the Holy Ghost. And when his word begins to distil like the rain and to drop like the dew, when the Lord himself is pleased to speak home one sweet testimony, one little word, one kind intimation—what a change it makes! The clouds break away, the fog clears off, the mists dissolve, and the soul becomes sweetly persuaded of its interest in the blood and love of the Lamb.

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869

8th August 2020

“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way.” John 14:6

How is Jesus the way? In everything that he is to God’s people he is the way. His blood is the way to heaven; “for the whole path,” as Hart speaks, “is lined with blood.” By his precious blood shed upon Calvary’s tree he has put away sin by the sacrifice of himself, and opened a way of access to God. His righteousness, also, is part of the way; for only so far as we stand clothed in his glorious righteousness have we any access unto, any acceptance with God the Father. And his love is the way; for if we walk in love, we walk in him, for he is love. Every part of the way was devised and is executed by the love of his tender heart. But the way, also, is the way of tribulation. Was not Jesus himself the great Sufferer? And if he be the way, the only way, I must be conformed to his likeness in suffering. Not to know afflictions and tribulations, is not to know Christ. He was “a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief!” And if so, to have no sorrow, to have no acquaintance with grief, and to know nothing of tribulation, is to proclaim to all with a loud voice that we have no union and communion with the Lord Jesus Christ. But we are continually turning aside “to the right hand” or “to the left.” There is that cowardice in the heart which cannot bear the cross; there is that slipping into carnal ease and fleshly security, so as to get away from under the painful cross of affliction and suffering. But when we thus turn aside “to the right hand” or “to the left,” the voice the Lord sends after us is, “This is the way”—the way of affliction; no other; the way of tribulation, the way of trial, the way of exercise. This is the way in which the King walked of old; and this is the way in which all his people have walked before him and after him; for this is the only path in which the footsteps of the flock can be found.

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869

7th August 2020

“The fear of the Lord is his treasure.” Isaiah 33:6

“The fear of the Lord is his treasure.” And, oh, what a treasure is this fear! Treasure in ancient times was generally hidden; it was concealed from the eye of man, hoarded up, and not brought out ostentatiously to view. Wealthy men of old hid the knowledge of their treasures, lest they should be spoiled of them by the hand of violence. So spiritually, the fear of the Lord is hidden in the heart, and lies deep in the soul; it is not spread out ostentatiously to view, but is buried out of sight in a man’s conscience. But though hidden from others, and sometimes even from ourselves, this “fear of the Lord” will act as circumstances draw it forth. There may be times and seasons when we seem almost hardened and conscience-seared; sin appears to have such power over us, and evil thoughts and desires so carry us away, that we cannot trace one atom of godly fear within; and the soul cries, “What will become of me! Where am I going now! What will come next on such a wretch as I feel myself to be!” But place him in such circumstances, say, as befel Joseph, then he will find that the “fear of the Lord” is in him a fountain of life, a holy principle springing up in his soul. Thus, this fear, which is a part of the heavenly treasure, acts when most needed. And the more the life of God is felt in the soul, the more the fear of God flows forth as a fountain of life to depart from the snares of death. The more lively the grace of God is in the soul, the more lively will godly fear be in the heart; and the more the Spirit of God works with power in the conscience, the deeper will be the fear of God in the soul.

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869

6th August 2020

“He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.” Proverbs 16:32

What a foe to one’s peace is one’s own spirit! And what shall I call it? It is often an infernal spirit. Why? Because it bears the mark of Satan upon it. The pride of our spirit, the presumption of our spirit, the hypocrisy of our spirit, the intense selfishness of our spirit are often hidden from us. This wily devil, self, can wear such masks and assume such forms; this serpent, self, can so creep and crawl, can so twist and turn, and can disguise itself under such false appearances, that it is hidden often from ourselves. Who is the greatest enemy we have to fear? We all have our enemies. But who is our greatest enemy? He that you carry in your own bosom; your daily, hourly, and momently companion, that entwines himself in nearly every thought of your heart; that suggests well-nigh every motive; that sometimes puffs up with pride, sometimes inflames with lust, sometimes inflates with presumption, and sometimes works under feigned humility and fleshly holiness.

Now this self must be overcome; for if self overcome us eventually, we shall perish in the condemnation of self. God is determined to stain the pride of human glory. He will never let self, (which is but another word for the creature,) wear the crown of victory. It must be crucified, denied, and mortified; it must be put off, so that Jesus may be put on; that in the denying of self, Jesus may be believed in; and that in the crucifixion of self, there may be a solemn spiritual union with Him who was crucified on Calvary. Now, are we overcoming self? Are we buffeted? What says self? “Buffet again.” Are we despised? What says self? “Despise again; retort angry look for angry look, and hasty word, for hasty word; ‘an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.'” But what says the Spirit of God in a tender conscience? “Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.”

The way to overcome self is by looking out of self to Him who was crucified upon Calvary’s tree; to receive his image into our heart; to be clothed with his likeness; to drink into his spirit; and “receive out of his fulness grace for grace.”

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869

5th August 2020

“And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.” John 17:3

How many are anxious to know what is the way of salvation, how eternal life is to be obtained, and how to “flee from the wrath to come.” But the Lord Jesus has shewn in one short sentence in what eternal life consists, that it is in the knowledge of the “only true God, and of Jesus Christ, whom he has sent.” He therefore that knows the Father and the Son has eternal life in his soul. The Lord Jesus, in the sixth chapter of John, quoted this amongst other passages of the Old Testament, and says, “It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me.” He lays this down, then, as one especial fruit of divine teaching, that it produces a coming unto him. The Spirit, who teacheth to profit, holds up before the eyes of the soul, the Person, work, blood, love, grace, and righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ. He shews the soul that he is just such a Saviour as it needs. He opens up the dignity of his Person, and shews that he is God-man. He makes known in the conscience that he has offered up himself a sacrifice for sin; that he has shed his atoning blood so that the sin of the Church is for ever put away from the sight of a just God. He opens up before the eyes of the mind his glorious righteousness, as that in which the Father is well pleased, and in which if the soul has but an interest, it is secure from the wrath to come. He unfolds to the heart the willingness of Christ to receive every coming sinner; he shews the treasures of mercy and grace which are locked up in him; and brings down in the heart the comforting words that he spake in the days of his flesh, such as, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” “Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.”

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869

3rd August 2020

“When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.” Colossians 3:4

If Christ be your life upon earth; if you have a living faith in his divine Majesty; if any drops of his love have ever bedewed your soul; if any sweet smile has ever comforted your heart, the Apostle would say to all such, “When Christ, who is your life, shall appear with all his saints, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.” No longer pestered by sin and Satan, no longer carrying about a weak, infirm tabernacle, the seat of innumerable evils and maladies, but endued with a soul pure as he is pure, and a spiritual body capable of enjoying the bliss and blessedness of eternity, “then shall ye appear,” ye suffering saints, who have set your affections on him whom ye have not seen, and yet in whom ye believe, “then shall ye also appear with him in glory.” And is not this worth struggling for? Is not this a blessed goal at the end of the race? Is not this a worthy prize to run for? Is not this an ample reward of all your temptations, troubles, griefs and sorrows, to believe, and not in vain, that “when he shall appear,” you “shall appear with him in glory?” The Lord, if it be his will, lead our souls into these divine and blessed realities! They are the substance of vital godliness; and so far as we feel them, and live under the sweet influences and bedewing operations of the Spirit of grace, these things will prove all our salvation, as they must be, if we be rightly taught, all our desire.

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869

2nd August 2020

“Underneath are the everlasting arms.” Deuteronomy 33:27

How Moses brought before the people the eternity of God! He will have nothing to do with time. What is time? A fragment, merely like the foam of the sea compared with the mighty ocean. The ocean is eternity; time is merely the foam upon the wave. “Underneath are the everlasting arms.” And depend upon it, if the everlasting arms are underneath the saints of God, for it is of and to them that the words are spoken, they are there for some purpose. God puts affliction upon affliction to bring the soul down, that it may fall into and upon the everlasting arms, and find how firm and strong they are. And have you not often found it so? Do not lie against your right. How many trials in providence you have been brought through. How conspicuously the Lord has appeared in this and that instance, so that your unbelief and infidelity were, for the time at least, thoroughly silenced, and faith saw the hand of God so clearly that you felt as if you could never doubt again. Have you not had many sweet supports on your bed of languishing, many precious seasons when you could bless God for laying upon you his afflicting hand? And have you not found that strength was always given to you according to your day, that with every trial power was given you to bear it, and that out of your deepest afflictions came your greatest blessings? Why are you not in hell? Do you not deserve to be there? Why still upon praying ground, with a good hope through grace, and your soul waiting for the Lord to appear, more than those that watch for the morning? If these arms have once supported you, will they not support you again? Would they be everlasting if they could part asunder and let you fall through? Rest upon them and you will find how strong they are.

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869

1st August 2020

“Let thy work appear unto thy servants, and thy glory unto their children.” Psalm 90:16

“Let thy work appear unto thy servants.” Creature works we here read nothing of. They had been long ago cut to the very ground. And what had been their deathblow? What had driven the dagger into their very heart? “Days of affliction, and years of evil.” These had been their destruction; creature righteousness they had stabbed to the very heart, and let out the life-blood of human merit. There is no petition, then, “Let our works appear!” No. These were buried in the grave of corruption; these were swallowed up and lost in “days of affliction, and years of evil.” But, “Let thy work,” the finished work of the Son of God; the obedience of Jesus to the law; the atoning blood which he shed upon Calvary’s tree; the work which he undertook, went through, and completed,—”Oh,” breathes forth the man of God in earnest cry (and our hearts if they have been taught by the same Spirit will unite in the same strain), “let thy work appear unto thy servants!” What! can we not see that work in the word of God? is not that sufficient? Can we not hear that work set forth by good men? is not that sufficient? Can we not read it as opened up by the pen of ready writers? is not that sufficient? Yes; for those who have never seen “days of affliction, and years of evil,” amply sufficient; but not for God’s exercised children; they have other thoughts and other feelings upon these matters. They know what darkness of mind is, the power of unbelief, and creature helplessness; and they know that nothing short of the light of God’s countenance, the manifestation of God’s mercy, and the teaching and witness of God the Spirit, can make the work of Jesus appear in all its beauty, suitability, and glory; and therefore they can say, “Let thy work appear unto thy servants. Give me, Lord, a sight by living faith of the atonement of Jesus. Shew me” (the soul would cry in the language of Moses), “shew me thy glory; reveal in my heart the finished work of Jesus; sprinkle my conscience with his atoning blood; discover him to me, and thus give me a sweet manifestation of his Person, love, blood, and complete salvation. Let it, Lord, appear before mine eyes, and in my heart, and seal it with divine power upon my conscience.

J. C. Philpot 1802-1869