Hope

Hope

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Our All-Sufficient Portion


'The Lord is my portion,' says my soul.



Lamentations 3:24


It does not say, "The Lord is partly my portion," nor "The Lord is in my portion"; but He Himself makes up the sum total of my soul's inheritance. Within the circumference of that circle lies all that we possess or desire.

The Lord is my portion. Not His grace merely, nor His love, nor His covenant, but Jehovah Himself. He has chosen us for His portion, and we have chosen Him for ours.

It is true that the Lord must first choose our inheritance for us, or else we will never choose it for ourselves; but if we are really called according to the purpose of electing love, we can sing-

Lov'd of my God for Him again

With love intense I burn;

Chosen of Him ere time began,

I choose Him in return.

The Lord is our all-sufficient portion. God fills Himself; and if God is all-sufficient in Himself, He must be all-sufficient for us. It is not easy to satisfy man's desires. When he dreams that he is satisfied, instantly he wakes to the perception that there is still something more, and his longings remain unfulfilled.

But for the believer all that we can wish for is to be found in our divine portion, so that we ask, "Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you."1 We can then delight ourselves in the Lord who allows us to drink of the river of His pleasures.

Our faith stretches her wings and soars like an eagle into the heaven of divine love, her proper dwelling-place. "The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance."2 Let us rejoice in the Lord always; let us show the world that we are a happy and a blessed people and cause them to exclaim, "Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you."

1 Psalm 73:25 2 Psalm 16:6
- Spurgeon & Begg


Friday, November 11, 2011

Everlasting Arms...


Underneath are the everlasting arms.

Deuteronomy 33:27

God-the eternal God-is Himself our support at all times, and especially when we are sinking in deep trouble. There are seasons when the Christian sinks very low in humiliation. Under a deep sense of his great sinfulness, he is humbled before God until he hardly knows how to pray, because he appears, in his own sight, so worthless.

Well, child of God, remember that when you are at your worst and lowest, even then "underneath" you "are the everlasting arms." Sin may drag you ever so low, but Christ's great atonement is still under all. You may have descended into the depths, but you cannot have fallen so low as the uttermost; and He saves "to the uttermost."1

Again, the Christian sometimes sinks very deeply in sore trial from without. Every earthly prop is cut away. What then? Still underneath him are "the everlasting arms."

He cannot fall so deep in distress and affliction but what the covenant grace of an ever-faithful God will still encircle him. The Christian may be sinking under trouble from within through fierce conflict; but even then he cannot be brought so low as to be beyond the reach of the "everlasting arms"-they are underneath him; and, while he is sustained, all Satan's efforts to harm him achieve nothing.

This assurance of support is a comfort to any weary but sincere worker in the service of God. It implies a promise of strength for each day, grace for each need, and power for each duty.

And, finally, when death comes, the promise will still hold good. When we stand in the middle of the Jordan, we will be able to say with David, "I will fear no evil, for you are with me."2

We will descend into the grave, but we shall go no lower, for the eternal arms prevent our further fall. All through life, and at its close, we shall be upheld by the "everlasting arms"-arms that neither flag nor lose their strength, for "the everlasting God . . . does not faint or grow weary."3

1 Hebrews 7:25 2 Psalm 23:4 3 Isaiah 40:28
- Alistair Begg & C.H. Spurgeon



Friday, November 4, 2011

Made Perfect in Weakness...


'For my power is made perfect in weakness.'

2 Corinthians 12:9

A primary qualification for serving God with any amount of success, and for doing God's work well and triumphantly, is a sense of our own weakness. When God's warrior marches out to battle, strong in his own might, when he boasts, "I know that I will overcome-my own ability and my self-confidence will be enough for victory," defeat is staring him in the face.

God will not enable the man who marches in his own strength. He who reckons on victory by such means has reckoned wrongly, for "not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the LORD of hosts."1

Those who go out to fight, boasting of their ability, will return with their banners trailing in the dust and their armor stained with disgrace. Those who serve God must serve Him in His own way and in His strength, or He will never accept their service.

Whatever a man does, unaided by divine strength, God can never own. The mere fruits of the earth He casts away; He will only reap corn the seed of which was sown from heaven, watered by grace, and ripened by the sun of divine love.

God will empty out all that you have before He will put His own into you; He will first clean out your granaries before He will fill them with the finest of wheat.

The river of God is full of water; but not one drop of it flows from earthly springs. God will have no strength used in His battles but the strength that He Himself imparts.

Are you mourning over your own weakness? Take courage, for there must be a consciousness of weakness before the Lord will give you victory. Your emptiness is but the preparation for your being filled, and you are being humbled to prepare you for being lifted up.

When I am weak then am I strong,

Grace is my shield and Christ my song.

Zechariah 4:6

- Alistair Begg