Saturday, September 29, 2018

My Victorian Year #36

This week I'll be sharing quotes from Charles Spurgeon's Morning and Evening and J.C. Ryle's Expository Thoughts on the Gospel of Matthew.

From Morning and Evening:

  • “Being justified by faith, we have peace with God.” Conscience accuses no longer. Judgment now decides for the sinner instead of against him. Memory looks back upon past sins, with deep sorrow for the sin—but yet with no dread of any penalty to come; for It seems to be one of the very principles of our enlightened nature—to believe that God is just. We feel that it must be so—and this gives us terror at first. But it is marvelous, that this very same belief that God is just, becomes afterwards the pillar of our confidence and peace!
  • If God is just, I, a sinner, alone and without a substitute, must be punished. But Jesus stands in my stead—and is punished for me; and now, if God be just—I, a sinner, standing in Christ, can never be punished!
  • Is not every Christian more than a conqueror through Him who loved him? Living in peace—all the saints fall asleep in the arms of victory!
  • He who affirms that Christianity makes men miserable, is himself an utter stranger to it. It were strange indeed, if it made us wretched, for see to what a position it exalts us! It makes us sons of God! Do you suppose that God will give all the happiness to His enemies, and reserve all the mourning for His own family?
  • The rod of chastisement must rest upon us in our measure—but it works for us the comfortable fruits of righteousness; and therefore by the aid of the divine Comforter, we, the “people saved of the Lord,” will rejoice in the God of our salvation.
  • Our hearts are knit unto Him—we are His members, and though for a while we may suffer as our Head once suffered—yet we are even now blessed with heavenly blessings in Him.
  • How can we but love Him—when we know that He numbers the very hairs of our heads, marks our path, and orders our ways!
  • When a man sees himself to be altogether lost and ruined, covered all over with the defilement of sin, and no part free from pollution; when he disclaims all righteousness of his own, and pleads guilty before the Lord—then is he clean through the blood of Jesus, and the grace of God. Hidden, unfelt, unconfessed iniquity is the true leprosy—but when sin is seen and felt—it has received its death blow, and the Lord looks with eyes of mercy upon the soul afflicted with it. Nothing is more deadly than self-righteousness, or more hopeful than contrition. We must confess that we are “nothing else but sin,” for no confession short of this will be the whole truth.
  • If the Holy Spirit is at work with us, convincing us of sin, there will be no difficulty about making such an acknowledgment—it will spring spontaneously from our lips.
  • Sin mourned and confessed, however black and foul, shall never shut a man out from the Lord Jesus.
  • With every morning’s dawn, lift up your notes of thanksgiving, and let every setting sun be followed with your song. Belt the earth with your praises; surround it with an atmosphere of melody, and God Himself will hearken from heaven and accept your music.
  • The lowest degree of grace—is superior to the noblest development of unregenerate nature. Where the Holy Spirit implants divine life in the soul, there is a precious deposit which none of the refinements of education can equal.

From J.C. Ryle's Expository Thoughts on Matthew, chapter 16
Matthew 16:1-12

  • This repetition shows us that our Lord was in the habit of saying the same things over again. He did not content Himself with saying a thing once, and afterwards never repeating it. It is evident that it was His custom to bring forward certain truths again and again, and thus to impress them more deeply on the minds of His disciples.
  • If we love life, and would see good days, let us never think that we do not need that hint, "take heed, and beware."
  • The Great Physician knew well that Pharisee-doctrines and Sadducee-doctrines would prove the two great wasting diseases of His Church, until the end of the world.
Matthew 16:13-20

  • Men forget that it is a widely different thing to believe in Christ's divine mission, when we dwell in the midst of professing Christians, and to believe in it when we dwell in the midst of hardened and unbelieving Jews.
  • The Church which Jesus promises to build upon a rock, is the "blessed company of all believing people." It is not the visible church of any one nation, or country, or place. It is the whole body of believers of every age, and tongue, and people.
  • It is a church composed of all who are washed in Christ's blood, clothed in Christ's righteousness, renewed by Christ's Spirit, joined to Christ by faith, and epistles of Christ in life.
  • It is a church of which every member is baptized with the Holy Spirit, and is really and truly holy. It is a church which is one body. All who belong to it are of one heart and one mind, hold the same truths, and believe the same doctrines as necessary to salvation.
  • It is a church which has only one Head. That head is Jesus Christ Himself. "He is the head of the body." (Col. 1:18.)
  • The mystical body of Christ shall never perish or decay. Though often persecuted, afflicted, distressed, and brought low, it shall never come to an end. It shall outlive the wrath of Pharaohs and Roman Emperors.

Matthew 16:21-23

  • There may be much spiritual ignorance even in a true disciple of Christ.
  • These things are meant to teach us that we must neither regard saved men as infallible, because they are saved men, nor yet suppose they have no grace, because their grace is weak and small.
  • There is no doctrine of Scripture so deeply important as the doctrine of Christ's atoning death.
  • The truth is, that our Lord would have us regard the crucifixion as the central truth of Christianity. Right views of His vicarious death, and the benefits resulting from it, lie at the very foundation of Bible-religion.
  • Never let us forget this. On matters of church government, and the form of worship, men may differ from us, and yet reach heaven in safety. On the matter of Christ's atoning death, as the way of peace, truth is only one. If we are wrong here, we are ruined forever. Error on many other points is only a skin disease. Error about Christ's death is a disease at the heart.

Matthew 16:24-28

  • We must not conceal from ourselves that true Christianity brings with it a daily cross in this life, while it offers us a crown of glory in the life to come.
  • The flesh must be daily crucified. The devil must be daily resisted. The world must be daily overcome. There is a warfare to be waged, and a battle to be fought. All this is the inseparable accompaniment of true religion.
  • Heaven is not to be won without it. Never was there a truer word than the old saying, "No cross, no crown!" If we never found this out by experience, our souls are in a poor condition.

© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible

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