THE GOD WHO FEEDS HIS CHILDREN ALL THEIR LIVES

THE GOD WHO FEEDS HIS CHILDREN ALL THEIR LIVES

C.H. Spurgeon

The old man’s voice faltered as he said, “The God which fed me all my life long.” The translation would be better if it ran, “The God which shepherded me all my life long.”

He spoke of the Lord as his Shepherd. Jacob had been a shepherd and, therefore, he knew what shepherding included—the figure is full of meaning. There had been a good deal of Jacob about Jacob and he had tried to shepherd himself. Poor sheep that he was, while under his own guidance he had been caught in many thorns and had wandered in many wildernesses. Because he would be so much a shepherd to himself, he had been hard put to it. But over all, despite his wilfulness, the shepherding of the Covenant God had been exercised towards him and he acknowledged it.

O dear saints of God, you to whom years are being multiplied, give praise to your God for having been your Shepherd! You delight in the 23rd Psalm—sing it sometimes with variations by using the past tense—”The Lord has been my Shepherd and I have known no need. He has made me to lie down in green pastures; He has led me beside the still waters. Yes, though I have walked through the valley of the shadow of death in times of great darkness, yet I have feared no evil: for He has been with me, His rod and His staff have comforted me.” Bear your witness to the shepherding of God, for this may lead others to become the sheep of His pasture.

This shepherding had been perfect. Our version rightly says that the Lord had fed Jacob all his life long. Take that sense of it and you who have a daily struggle for subsistence will see much beauty in it. Jacob had a large family and yet they were fed. Some of you say, “It is all very well of you to talk of Providence when you have few to provide for.” I answer, it is better, still, to talk of Providence where a large household requires large provision! Remember Jacob had 13 children, yet his God provided them bread to eat and clothes to put on. None of that large company were left to starve.

You think, perhaps, that Jacob was a man of large estate. He was not so when he began life. He was only a working man—a shepherd. When he left his father’s house he had no attendants with camels and tents. I suppose he carried his little bit of provision in a handkerchief and when he laid down that night to sleep, with a stone for his pillow, the hedges for curtains, the heavens for his canopy, and the earth for his bed, he had no fear of being robbed.

God was with him, but apart from that, he had nothing to begin life with but his own hands. Whatever he received from his father Isaac afterwards, he had at first to fight his own way—but he knew no lack either at the beginning or at the end, for he could speak of the great Elohim as, “the God which fed me all my life long.” Hundreds of us can say the same! I remember one who came to be wealthy who used to show me with great pleasure the tree axle of the truck in which he used to wheel his goods through the streets when he began in business—I liked to see him mindful of his original.

Mind you do not go and say, “See how I have got on by my own talents and industry!” Talk not so proudly, but say, “GOD HAS FED ME.” Mercies are all the sweeter when seen to come from the hand of God.
But besides being FED, Jacob had been LED, even as sheep are guided by the shepherd who goes before them. His journeys, for that period, had been unusually long, perilous and frequent. He had fled from home to Padanaram. After long years he had come back to Canaan and had met his brother, Esau. And after that, in his old age he had journeyed into Egypt. To go to California or New Zealand in these times is nothing at all compared to those journeys in Jacob’s day! But he says, “God has shepherded me all my life long” and he means that the great changes of his life had been wisely ordered. At home and in exile, in Canaan and in Goshen, God had been a shepherd to him. He sees the good hand of God upon him in all his wanderings, until he now finds himself sitting up on his bed and blessing Joseph through his sons.

Oh that the Holy Spirit may make you feel that you need God with you with wealth as much as your fathers needed God without wealth! You may yet come to beggary with all your inheritance if you cast off the fear of the Lord and fall into sin. You who begin life with nothing but your own brains and hands, trusting in your father’s God, shall yet have to sing as your fathers sang, “the God which fed me all my life long.”

Young men and young women beginning life, I charge you seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness! It is not life to live without God—you miss the kernel, the cream, the crown of life if you miss the Presence of God! Life is but a bubble blown up of toil and trouble without God! Life ends in blighted hope if you have not hope in God. But with God you are as a sheep with a Shepherd—cared for, guided, guarded, fed, led—and your end shall be peace without end!

GOD’S FAITHFULNESS TO HIS PEOPLE

GOD’S FAITHFULNESS TO HIS PEOPLE

C.H. Spurgeon

“Great is Thy faithfulness!” [Lam 3:23]

“What a consolation it is that our God never changes! What he was yesterday he is today. What we find him today we shall find him for ever. Are you struggling against sin? Don’t struggle in your own strength: it is God who performeth all things for you…In the hand of Jesus all his people are, and in that hand they shall be for ever and ever. ‘None shall pluck them out of my hand,’ saith He. Their preservation shall be perfected. So, too, their sanctification.

Every child of God is set apart by Christ, and in Christ, and the work of the Spirit has commenced which shall subdue sin, and extirpate the very roots of corruption; and this work shall be perfected; nay, is being perfected at this very moment… He is perfecting us in all things for himself. He has promised to bring us to glory. We have the earnest of that great glory in us now. The new life is there; all the elements of heaven are within us. Now He will perfect all these. He will not suffer one good thing that He has planted within us to die. It is a living and incorruptible seed, which liveth and abideth for ever. He will perfect all things for us. There is nothing that makes the saints complete but what God will give to us. There shall be lacking us no one trait of loveliness that is needful for the courtiers of the skies; no one virtue that is necessary in us.

What a marvellous thing is a Christian! How mean; how noble! How abject;how august! How near to hell; how close to heaven! How fallen, yet lifted up! Able to do nothing; yet doing all things! Doing nothing; yet accomplishing all things; because herein it is that, in the man, and with the man, there is God, and He performeth all things for us. God, give us grace to look away entirely, evermore, from ourselves, and to depend entirely upon Him.”

GOD’S FAITHFULNESS MY ONLY HOPE FOR THE YEAR AHEAD

by A.W. Pink

UNFAITHFULNESS is one of the most outstanding sins of these evil days. In the business world, a man’s word is, with exceedingly rare exceptions, no longer his bond. In the social world, marital infidelity abounds on every hand, the sacred bonds of wedlock being broken with as little regard as the discarding of an old garment. In the ecclesiastical realm, thousands who have solemnly covenanted to preach the truth make no scruple to attack and deny it. Nor can reader or writer claim complete immunity from this fearful sin: in how many ways have we been unfaithful to Christ, and to the light and privileges which God has entrusted to us! How refreshing, then, how unspeakably blessed, to lift our eyes above this scene of ruin, and behold One who is faithful, faithful in all things, faithful at all times.

“Know therefore that the Lord Thy God, He is God, THE FAITHFUL God” (Deut 7:9). This quality is essential to His being, without it He would not be God. For God to be unfaithful would be to act contrary to His nature, which were impossible: “if we believe not, yet He abideth faithful; He cannot deny Himself” (II Tim 2:13). Faithfulness is one of the glorious perfections of His being. He is as it were clothed with it: “O Lord God of hosts, who is a strong Lord like unto Thee? or to Thy faithfulness ROUND ABOUT Thee?” (Psa 89:8). So too when God became incarnate it was said, “Righteousness shall be the girdle of His loins, and faithfulness the girdle of His reins” (Isa 11:5).

What a word is that in Psalms 36:5, “Thy mercy, O Lord, is in the heavens; and Thy faithfulness unto the clouds.” Far above all finite comprehension is the unchanging faithfulness of God. Everything about God is great, vast, incomparable. He never forgets, never fails, never falters, never forfeits His word. To every declaration of promise or prophecy the Lord has exactly adhered, every engagement of covenant or threatening He will make good, for “God is not a man, that He should lie; neither the son of man, that He should repent: hath He said, and shall He not do it? or hath He spoken, and shall He not make it good?” (Num 23:19). Therefore does the believer exclaim, “His compassions fail not, they are new every morning: GREAT is Thy faithfulness” (Lam 3:22-23).

Scripture abounds in illustrations of God’s faithfulness. More than four thousand years ago He said, “While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease” (Gen 8:22). Every year that comes furnishes a fresh witness to God’s fulfillment of this promise. In Genesis 15 we find that Jehovah declared unto Abraham, “Thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them… But in the fourth generation they shall come hither again” (vv.13-16). Centuries ran their weary course. Abraham’s descendants groaned amid the brick-kilns of Egypt. Had God forgotten His promise? No, indeed. Read Exodus 12:41, “And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years, even the selfsame day it came to pass, that all the hosts of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt.” Through Isaiah the Lord declared, “Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call His name Immanuel” (7:14). Again centuries past, but “When the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman” (Gal 4:4).

God is true. His Word of Promise is sure. In all His relations with His people God is faithful. He may be safely relied upon. No one ever yet really trusted Him in vain. We find this precious truth expressed almost everywhere in the Scriptures, for His people need to know that faithfulness is an essential part of the Divine character. This is the basis of our confidence in Him. But it is one thing to accept the faithfulness of God as a Divine truth, it is quite another to ACT UPON IT. God has given us many “exceeding great and precious promises,” but are we really counting on His fulfillment of them? Are we actually EXPECTING Him to do for us all that He has said? Are we resting with implicit assurance on these words, “He is FAITHFUL that promised” (Heb 10:23)?

There are seasons in the lives of all when it is not easy, no not even for Christians, to believe that God IS faithful. Our faith is sorely tried, our eyes bedimmed with tears, and we can no longer trace the outworkings of His love. Our ears are distracted with the noises of the world, harassed by the atheistic whisperings of Satan, and we can no longer hear the sweet accents of His still small voice. Cherished plans have been thwarted, friends on whom we relied have failed us, a professed brother or sister in Christ has betrayed us. We are staggered. We sought to be faithful to God, and now a dark cloud hides Him from us. We find it difficult, yea, impossible, for carnal reason to harmonize His frowning providence with His gracious promises. Ah, faltering soul, severely tried fellow pilgrim, seek grace to heed Isaiah 50:10, “Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of His servant, that walketh in darkness and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the Lord, and STAY UPON HIS GOD.”

When you are tempted to doubt the faithfulness of God, cry out, “Get thee hence, Satan.” Though you cannot now harmonize God’s mysterious dealings with the avowals of His love, wait on Him for more light. In His own good time He will make it plain to you. “What I do thou knowest not NOW but thou shalt know hereafter” (John 13:7). The sequel will yet demonstrate that God has neither forsaken nor deceived His child. ‘And therefore will the Lord WAIT that He may be gracious unto you, and therefore will He be exalted, that He may have mercy upon you: for the Lord is a God of judgement: blessed are all they THAT WAIT FOR HIM” (Isa 30:18).

 “Judge not the Lord by feeble sense,
But trust Him for His grace,
Behind a frowning providence
He hides a smiling face.
Ye fearful saints, fresh courage take,
The clouds ye so much dread,
Are rich with mercy, and shall break
In blessing o’er your head.”

“Thy testimonies which Thou hast commanded are righteous and very faithful” (Psa 119:138). God has not only told us the best, but He has not withheld the worst. He has faithfully described the ruin which the Fall has effected. He has faithfully diagnosed the terrible state which sin has produced. He has faithfully made known his inveterate hatred of evil, and that He must punish the same. He has faithfully warned us that He is “a consuming fire” (Heb 12:29). Not only does His Word abound in illustrations of His fidelity in fulfilling His promises, but it also records numerous examples of His faithfulness in making good His threatenings. Every stage of Israel’s history exemplifies that solemn fact. So it was with individuals: Pharaoh, Korah, Achan and a host of others are so many proofs. And thus it will be with YOU, my reader: unless you have fled or do flee to Christ for refuge, the everlasting burning of the Lake of Fire will be your sure and certain portion. God IS faithful.

God is faithful IN PRESERVING His people. “God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of His Son” (I Cor 1:9). In the previous verse promise was made that God would confirm unto the end His own people. The Apostle’s confidence in the absolute security of believers was founded not on the strength of their resolutions or ability to persevere, but on the veracity of Him that cannot lie. Since God has promised to His Son a certain people for His inheritance, to deliver them from sin and condemnation, and to make them participants of eternal life in glory, it is certain that He will not allow any of them to perish.

God is faithful in DISCIPLINING His people. He is faithful in what He withholds, no less than in what He gives. He is faithful in sending sorrow as well as in giving joy. The faithfulness of God is a truth to be confessed by us not only when we are at ease, but also when we are smarting under the sharpest rebuke. Nor must this confession be merely of our mouths, but of our hearts, too. When God smites us with the rod of chastisement, it is FAITHFULNESS which wields it. To acknowledge this means that we humble ourselves before Him, own that we fully deserve His correction, and instead of murmuring, we thank Him for it. God never afflicts without a reason. “For THIS CAUSE many are weak and sickly among you” (I Cor 11:30), says Paul, illustrating this principle. When His rod falls upon us let us say with Daniel, “O Lord, righteousness belongeth unto Thee, but unto us confusion of faces” (9:7).

“I know, O Lord, that Thy judgments are right, and that Thou IN FAITHFIULNESS hast afflicted me” (Psa 119:75). Trouble and affliction are not only consistent with God’s love pledged in the everlasting covenant, but they are parts of the administration of the same. God is not only faithful notwithstanding afflictions, but faithful in sending them. “Then will I visit their transgression with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes. Nevertheless My lovingkindness will I not utterly take from him, nor suffer My faithfulness to fail” (Psa 89:32-33). Chastening is not only reconcilable with God’s lovingkindness, but it is the effect and expression of it. It would much quiet the minds of God’s people if they would remember that His covenant love binds Him to lay on them seasonable correction. Afflictions are necessary for us: “In their affliction they will seek Me early” (Hosea 5:15).

God is faithful in GLORIFYING His people. “Faithful is He which calleth you, who also will do” (I Thess 5:24). The immediate reference here is to the saints being “preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” God deals with us not on the ground of our merits (for we have none), but for His own great name’s sake. God is constant to Himself and to His own purpose of grace: “whom He called… them He also glorified” (Rom 8:30). God gives a full demonstration of the constancy of His everlasting goodness toward His elect by effectually calling them out of darkness into His marvelous light, and this should fully assure them of the certain continuance of it. ‘The foundation of God STANDETH SURE” (II Tim 2:19). Paul was resting on the faithfulness of God when he said, “I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day” (II Tim 1:12).

The apprehension of this blessed truth will PRESERVE US FROM WORRY. To be full of care, to view our situation with dark forebodings, to anticipate the morrow with sad anxiety, is to reflect poorly upon the faithfulness of God. He who has cared for His child through all the years will not forsake him in old age. He who has heard your prayers in the past will not refuse to supply your need in the present emergency. Rest on Job 5:19, “He SHALL deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee.”

The apprehension of this blessed truth will CHECK OUR MURMURINGSThe Lord knows what is best for each one of us, and one effect of resting on this truth will be the silencing of our petulant complainings. God is greatly honored when, under trial and chastening, we have good thoughts of Him, vindicate His wisdom and justice, and recognize His love in His very rebukes.

The apprehension of this blessed truth will beget increasing CONFIDENCE IN GOD“Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to Him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator” (I Pet 4:19). When we trustfully resign ourselves, and all our affairs into God’s hands, fully persuaded of His love and faithfulness, the sooner shall we be satisfied with His providences and realize that “He doeth ALL things well.”

THE LONGER YOU SERVE JESUS, THE SWEETER HE GROWS

THE LONGER YOU SERVE JESUS, THE SWEETER HE GROWS

Since I started for the Kingdom,
Since my life He controls,
Since I gave my heart to Jesus,
The longer I serve Him,
The sweeter He grows.

Chorus
The longer I serve Him, the sweeter He grows,
The more that I love Him, more love He bestows;
Each day is like heaven, my heart overflows,
The longer I serve Him, the sweeter He grows.

Ev’ry need He is supplying,
Plenteous grace He bestows;
Ev’ry day my way gets brighter,
The longer I serve Him,
The sweeter He grows.

(The Gaither vocal band)

 

A MEDITATION ON GOD’S FAITHFULNESS

Michael Jeshurun

The Patriarch Jacob (Israel) while blessing his grandsons Ephraim and Manasseh testified – “God, before whom my father’s Abraham and Isaac did walk, THE GOD WHICH FED ME ALL MY LIFE LONG UNTO THIS DAY, The Angel which redeemed me from ALL EVIL, bless the lads!” [Gen 48:15]

This was the testimony of a man who had seen much evil in his life. In fact he once testified before Pharaoh – “few and evil have the days of the years of my life been!” [Gen 47:9] And yet just prior to his death he testifies of God’s great faithfulness!

As did the man after God’s own heart, when he testified – “I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.” [Psalm 37:25] In spite of David’s great sins and backslidings the Lord remained faithful to him to the very end; so that on his deathbed he could testify –

“Now these be the LAST WORDS OF DAVID. David the son of Jesse said, and the man who was raised up on high, the anointed of the God of Jacob, and the sweet Psalmist of Israel, said . . . .

The Spirit of the LORD spake by me, and His word was in my tongue.
The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God.
And he shall be as the light of the morning, when the sun riseth, even a morning without clouds; as the tender grass springing out of the earth by clear shining after rain!”

Now THAT is God’s standard for the King of Israel! But David had miserable fallen short here! And so he adds . . . .

“Although MY HOUSE BE NOT SO with God; yet He hath made with me AN EVERLASTING COVENANT, ORDERED IN ALL THINGS, AND SURE: for THIS IS ALL MY SALVATION, and all my desire, although He make it not to grow!” [2Sam 23:1-5]

Oh what a Word is that – “If we believe not, yet HE ABIDETH FAITHFUL: HE CANNOT DENY HIMSELF!” [2Tim 2:13]

And I for one can testify with my hand on my heart that all through these 29 years of knowing the Lord, HE HAS REMAINED THE SAME as when I first came to know Him! My sins, my failures, my murmurings, my backslidings and my shortcomings none of them have altered His love or faithfulness to me! He has remained the same just as His Word promises – “Jesus Christ the SAME yesterday, and today, and FOREVER!” [Heb 13:8]

Beloved, the only reason some of us have not been consumed in spite of all our provocations is because of Jehovah’s Immutability!

“We blossom and flourish, like leaves on the tree,
then wither and perish; but NOUGHT CHANGETH THEE!”

Commenting on God’s Immutability A.W. Pink writes –

“As fallen creatures we are not only mutable, but everything in us is opposed to God. As such we are “wandering stars” (Jude 13), out of our proper orbit. The wicked are “like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest” (Isa. 57:20). Fallen man is inconstant. The words of Jacob concerning Reuben apply with full force to all of Adam’s descendants: “unstable as water” (Gen. 49:4). Thus it is not only a mark of piety, but also the part of wisdom to heed that injunction, “cease ye from man” (Isa. 2:22).

NO HUMAN BEING IS TO BE DEPENDED ON. “Put not your trust in princes, in the son of man, in whom is no help” (Ps. 146:3). If I disobey God, then I deserve to be deceived and disappointed by my fellows. People who like you today, may hate you tomorrow. The multitude who cried “Hosanna to the Son of David,” speedily changed to “Away with Him, Crucify Him.”

HEREIN IS SOLID COMFORT! Human nature cannot be relied upon; but God can! However unstable I may be, however fickle my friends may prove, GOD CHANGES NOT! If He varied as we do, if He willed one thing today and another tomorrow, if He were controlled by caprice, who could confide in Him? But, all praise to His glorious name, He is ever the same. His purpose is fixed, His will stable, His Word is sure!

Here then is a Rock on which we may fix our feet, while the mighty torrent is sweeping away everything around us. The permanence of God’s character guarantees the fulfillment of His promises: “For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but MY KINDNESS SHALL NOT DEPART FROM THEE, NEITHER SHALL THE COVENANT OF MY PEACE BE REMOVED, saith the Lord that hath mercy on thee” (Isa. 54:10).

Say “Praise the Lord!”

THE LONGER WE SERVE HIM, THE SWEETER HE GROWS

THE LONGER WE SERVE HIM, THE SWEETER HE GROWS

Since I started for the Kingdom,
Since my life He controls,
Since I gave my heart to Jesus,
The longer I serve Him,
The sweeter He grows.

Chorus
The longer I serve Him, the sweeter He grows,
The more that I love Him, more love He bestows;
Each day is like heaven, my heart overflows,
The longer I serve Him, the sweeter He grows.

Ev’ry need He is supplying,
Plenteous grace He bestows;
Ev’ry day my way gets brighter,
The longer I serve Him,
The sweeter He grows.

(The Gaither vocal band)

 

A MEDITATION ON GOD’S FAITHFULNESS

Michael Jeshurun

The Patriarch Jacob (Israel) while blessing his grandsons Ephraim and Manasseh testified – “God, before whom my father’s Abraham and Isaac did walk, THE GOD WHICH FED ME ALL MY LIFE LONG UNTO THIS DAY, The Angel which redeemed me from ALL EVIL, bless the lads!” [Gen 48:15]

This was the testimony of a man who had seen much evil in his life. In fact he once testified before Pharaoh – “few and evil have the days of the years of my life been!” [Gen 47:9] And yet just prior to his death he testifies of God’s great faithfulness!

As did the man after God’s own heart, when he testified – “I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.” [Psalm 37:25] In spite of David’s great sins and backslidings the Lord remained faithful to him to the very end; so that on his deathbed he could testify –

“Now these be the LAST WORDS OF DAVID. David the son of Jesse said, and the man who was raised up on high, the anointed of the God of Jacob, and the sweet Psalmist of Israel, said . . . .

The Spirit of the LORD spake by me, and His word was in my tongue.
The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God.
And he shall be as the light of the morning, when the sun riseth, even a morning without clouds; as the tender grass springing out of the earth by clear shining after rain!”

Now THAT is God’s standard for the King of Israel! But David had miserable fallen short here! And so he adds . . . .

“Although MY HOUSE BE NOT SO with God; yet He hath made with me AN EVERLASTING COVENANT, ORDERED IN ALL THINGS, AND SURE: for THIS IS ALL MY SALVATION, and all my desire, although He make it not to grow!” [2Sam 23:1-5]

Oh what a Word is that – “If we believe not, yet HE ABIDETH FAITHFUL: HE CANNOT DENY HIMSELF!” [2Tim 2:13]

And I for one can testify with my hand on my heart that all through these 29 years of knowing the Lord, HE HAS REMAINED THE SAME as when I first came to know Him! My sins, my failures, my murmurings, my backslidings and my shortcomings none of them have altered His love or faithfulness to me! He has remained the same just as His Word promises – “Jesus Christ the SAME yesterday, and today, and FOREVER!” [Heb 13:8]

Beloved, the only reason some of us have not been consumed in spite of all our provocations is because of Jehovah’s Immutability!

“We blossom and flourish, like leaves on the tree,
then wither and perish; but NOUGHT CHANGETH THEE!”

Commenting on God’s Immutability A.W. Pink writes –

“As fallen creatures we are not only mutable, but everything in us is opposed to God. As such we are “wandering stars” (Jude 13), out of our proper orbit. The wicked are “like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest” (Isa. 57:20). Fallen man is inconstant. The words of Jacob concerning Reuben apply with full force to all of Adam’s descendants: “unstable as water” (Gen. 49:4). Thus it is not only a mark of piety, but also the part of wisdom to heed that injunction, “cease ye from man” (Isa. 2:22).

NO HUMAN BEING IS TO BE DEPENDED ON. “Put not your trust in princes, in the son of man, in whom is no help” (Ps. 146:3). If I disobey God, then I deserve to be deceived and disappointed by my fellows. People who like you today, may hate you tomorrow. The multitude who cried “Hosanna to the Son of David,” speedily changed to “Away with Him, Crucify Him.”

HEREIN IS SOLID COMFORT! Human nature cannot be relied upon; but God can! However unstable I may be, however fickle my friends may prove, GOD CHANGES NOT! If He varied as we do, if He willed one thing today and another tomorrow, if He were controlled by caprice, who could confide in Him? But, all praise to His glorious name, He is ever the same. His purpose is fixed, His will stable, His Word is sure!

Here then is a Rock on which we may fix our feet, while the mighty torrent is sweeping away everything around us. The permanence of God’s character guarantees the fulfillment of His promises: “For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but MY KINDNESS SHALL NOT DEPART FROM THEE, NEITHER SHALL THE COVENANT OF MY PEACE BE REMOVED, saith the Lord that hath mercy on thee” (Isa. 54:10).

Say “Praise the Lord!”

TWENTY FIVE YEARS OF GOD’S FAITHFULNESS AND MERCY

TWENTY FIVE YEARS OF GOD’S FAITHFULNESS AND MERCY

“Some of the elect are permitted to sin most grievously in their unconverted state, whilst others of them, even in their unregenerate days, are wondrously preserved. Again; some of the elect after their conversion have been divinely allowed to awfully fall into the most horrible impieties, whilst others of them are so preserved as never to sin willfully against their consciences from the first conviction to the very close of their lives.” (Condensed from S. E. Pierce on Hosea 14:1).

Even so, God preserves the marriages of a great number of His people whilst others He decrees that they be separated and glorify Him in the fires! [Isaiah 24:15] But in either case though the means be varied the determined end is ever the same – i.e. to conform His child to glorious image of His beloved Son!

The path ordained for every child of God whether it be in blessing or trial is as unique as the fingerprints on our hand or the iris in our eyes! It is a UNIQUE PATH “which no fowl knoweth, and which the vulture’s eye hath not seen” [Job 28:7]. Wherefore for the most part we seek in vain for someone to ‘understand us’ or sympathize with us! Our glorious Head looked for some to take pity, but there was NONE; and for comforters, but He found NONE”! [Psa 69:20]. And as a part of that glorious body it shall be no different with us!

“But HE knoweth the way that I take: when He hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold”! [Job 23:10] is the heartfelt confession of every true child of God! For they be persuaded that it is the LORD who giveth and the same LORD who taketh away and also that ‘ALL THINGS truly work together for good to them that love God and are the called according to His purpose!’ [Rom 8:28]

Today my wife and I glorify God for twenty five years of married life. A marriage that may not have lasted twenty five months God held together for a good twenty five years and all praise and glory is due to HIM ALONE!

Truth be told – it takes more than ‘GRACE’ to live with a miserable sinner like ME . . . it takes what the apostle calls “MORE GRACE!” But thanks be to God, “HE GIVETH MORE GRACE” which He graciously did and why we’re still around together serving Him. (James 4:6)

What is true concerning my own salvation as an ex-Satanist, alcoholic and drug addict, is true concerning our marriage too –
Through many dangers, toils and snares
We have already come;
‘Tis Grace that brought us safe thus far
and Grace will lead us home!

Thank you Lord Jesus for your faithfulness!
Hallelujah!

Love
Michael Jeshurun 

THE LONGER I SERVE HIM THE SWEETER HE GROWS

THE LONGER I SERVE HIM THE SWEETER HE GROWS

Since I started for the Kingdom,
Since my life He controls,
Since I gave my heart to Jesus,
The longer I serve Him,
The sweeter He grows.

Chorus
The longer I serve Him, the sweeter He grows,
The more that I love Him, more love He bestows;
Each day is like heaven, my heart overflows,
The longer I serve Him, the sweeter He grows.

Ev’ry need He is supplying,
Plenteous grace He bestows;
Ev’ry day my way gets brighter,
The longer I serve Him,
The sweeter He grows.

(The Gaither vocal band)

A MEDITATION ON GOD’S FAITHFULNESS

Michael Jeshurun

The Patriarch Jacob (Israel) while blessing his grandsons Ephraim and Manasseh testified – “God, before whom my father’s Abraham and Isaac did walk, THE GOD WHICH FED ME ALL MY LIFE LONG UNTO THIS DAY, The Angel which redeemed me from ALL EVIL, bless the lads!” [Gen 48:15]

This was the testimony of a man who had seen much evil in his life. In fact he once testified before Pharaoh – “few and evil have the days of the years of my life been!” [Gen 47:9] And yet just prior to his death he testifies of God’s great faithfulness!

As did the man after God’s own heart, when he testified – “I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.” [Psalm 37:25] In spite of David’s great sins and backslidings the Lord remained faithful to him to the very end; so that on his deathbed he could testify –

“Now these be the LAST WORDS OF DAVID. David the son of Jesse said, and the man who was raised up on high, the anointed of the God of Jacob, and the sweet Psalmist of Israel, said . . . .

The Spirit of the LORD spake by me, and His word was in my tongue.
The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God.
And he shall be as the light of the morning, when the sun riseth, even a morning without clouds; as the tender grass springing out of the earth by clear shining after rain!”

Now THAT is God’s standard for the King of Israel! But David had miserable fallen short here! And so he adds . . . .

“Although MY HOUSE BE NOT SO with God; yet He hath made with me AN EVERLASTING COVENANT, ORDERED IN ALL THINGS, AND SURE: for THIS IS ALL MY SALVATION, and all my desire, although He make it not to grow!” [2Sam 23:1-5]

Oh what a Word is that – “If we believe not, yet HE ABIDETH FAITHFUL: HE CANNOT DENY HIMSELF!” [2Tim 2:13]

And I for one can testify with my hand on my heart that all through these 29 years of knowing the Lord, HE HAS REMAINED THE SAME as when I first came to know Him! My sins, my failures, my murmurings, my backslidings and my shortcomings none of them have altered His love or faithfulness to me! He has remained the same just as His Word promises – “Jesus Christ the SAME yesterday, and today, and FOREVER!” [Heb 13:8]

Beloved, the only reason some of us have not been consumed in spite of all our provocations is because of Jehovah’s Immutability!

“We blossom and flourish, like leaves on the tree,
then wither and perish; but NOUGHT CHANGETH THEE!”

Commenting on God’s Immutability A.W. Pink writes –

“As fallen creatures we are not only mutable, but everything in us is opposed to God. As such we are “wandering stars” (Jude 13), out of our proper orbit. The wicked are “like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest” (Isa. 57:20). Fallen man is inconstant. The words of Jacob concerning Reuben apply with full force to all of Adam’s descendants: “unstable as water” (Gen. 49:4). Thus it is not only a mark of piety, but also the part of wisdom to heed that injunction, “cease ye from man” (Isa. 2:22).

NO HUMAN BEING IS TO BE DEPENDED ON. “Put not your trust in princes, in the son of man, in whom is no help” (Ps. 146:3). If I disobey God, then I deserve to be deceived and disappointed by my fellows. People who like you today, may hate you tomorrow. The multitude who cried “Hosanna to the Son of David,” speedily changed to “Away with Him, Crucify Him.”

HEREIN IS SOLID COMFORT! Human nature cannot be relied upon; but God can! However unstable I may be, however fickle my friends may prove, GOD CHANGES NOT! If He varied as we do, if He willed one thing today and another tomorrow, if He were controlled by caprice, who could confide in Him? But, all praise to His glorious name, He is ever the same. His purpose is fixed, His will stable, His Word is sure!

Here then is a Rock on which we may fix our feet, while the mighty torrent is sweeping away everything around us. The permanence of God’s character guarantees the fulfillment of His promises: “For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but MY KINDNESS SHALL NOT DEPART FROM THEE, NEITHER SHALL THE COVENANT OF MY PEACE BE REMOVED, saith the Lord that hath mercy on thee” (Isa. 54:10).

Say “Praise the Lord!”

THE GOD WHICH SHEPHERDED ME ALL MY LIFE LONG [Genesis 48:15]

THE GOD WHICH SHEPHERDED ME ALL MY LIFE LONG [Genesis 48:15]

C.H. Spurgeon

The old man’s voice faltered as he said, “The God which fed me all my life long.” The translation would be better if it ran, “The God which shepherded me all my life long.”

He spoke of the Lord as his Shepherd. Jacob had been a shepherd and, therefore, he knew what shepherding included—the figure is full of meaning. There had been a good deal of Jacob about Jacob and he had tried to shepherd himself. Poor sheep that he was, while under his own guidance he had been caught in many thorns and had wandered in many wildernesses. Because he would be so much a shepherd to himself, he had been hard put to it. But over all, despite his wilfulness, the shepherding of the Covenant God had been exercised towards him and he acknowledged it.

O dear saints of God, you to whom years are being multiplied, give praise to your God for having been your Shepherd! You delight in the 23rd Psalm—sing it sometimes with variations by using the past tense—”The Lord has been my Shepherd and I have known no need. He has made me to lie down in green pastures; He has led me beside the still waters. Yes, though I have walked through the valley of the shadow of death in times of great darkness, yet I have feared no evil: for He has been with me, His rod and His staff have comforted me.” Bear your witness to the shepherding of God, for this may lead others to become the sheep of His pasture.

This shepherding had been perfect. Our version rightly says that the Lord had fed Jacob all his life long. Take that sense of it and you who have a daily struggle for subsistence will see much beauty in it. Jacob had a large family and yet they were fed. Some of you say, “It is all very well of you to talk of Providence when you have few to provide for.” I answer, it is better, still, to talk of Providence where a large household requires large provision! Remember Jacob had 13 children, yet his God provided them bread to eat and clothes to put on. None of that large company were left to starve.

You think, perhaps, that Jacob was a man of large estate. He was not so when he began life. He was only a working man—a shepherd. When he left his father’s house he had no attendants with camels and tents. I suppose he carried his little bit of provision in a handkerchief and when he laid down that night to sleep, with a stone for his pillow, the hedges for curtains, the heavens for his canopy, and the earth for his bed, he had no fear of being robbed.

God was with him, but apart from that, he had nothing to begin life with but his own hands. Whatever he received from his father Isaac afterwards, he had at first to fight his own way—but he knew no lack either at the beginning or at the end, for he could speak of the great Elohim as, “the God which fed me all my life long.” Hundreds of us can say the same! I remember one who came to be wealthy who used to show me with great pleasure the tree axle of the truck in which he used to wheel his goods through the streets when he began in business—I liked to see him mindful of his original.

Mind you do not go and say, “See how I have got on by my own talents and industry!” Talk not so proudly, but say, “GOD HAS FED ME.” Mercies are all the sweeter when seen to come from the hand of God.
But besides being FED, Jacob had been LED, even as sheep are guided by the shepherd who goes before them. His journeys, for that period, had been unusually long, perilous and frequent. He had fled from home to Padanaram. After long years he had come back to Canaan and had met his brother, Esau. And after that, in his old age he had journeyed into Egypt. To go to California or New Zealand in these times is nothing at all compared to those journeys in Jacob’s day! But he says, “God has shepherded me all my life long” and he means that the great changes of his life had been wisely ordered. At home and in exile, in Canaan and in Goshen, God had been a shepherd to him. He sees the good hand of God upon him in all his wanderings, until he now finds himself sitting up on his bed and blessing Joseph through his sons.

Oh that the Holy Spirit may make you feel that you need God with you with wealth as much as your fathers needed God without wealth! You may yet come to beggary with all your inheritance if you cast off the fear of the Lord and fall into sin. You who begin life with nothing but your own brains and hands, trusting in your father’s God, shall yet have to sing as your fathers sang, “the God which fed me all my life long.”

Young men and young women beginning life, I charge you seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness! It is not life to live without God—you miss the kernel, the cream, the crown of life if you miss the Presence of God! Life is but a bubble blown up of toil and trouble without God! Life ends in blighted hope if you have not hope in God. But with God you are as a sheep with a Shepherd—cared for, guided, guarded, fed, led—and your end shall be peace without end!

THE GOD WHICH FEEDS AND CARES FOR US [Genesis 48:15]

few-and-evil

THE GOD WHICH FEEDS AND CARES FOR US [Genesis 48:15]

C.H. Spurgeon

The old man’s voice faltered as he said, “The God which fed me all my life long.” The translation would be better if it ran, “The God which shepherded me all my life long.”

He spoke of the Lord as his Shepherd. Jacob had been a shepherd and, therefore, he knew what shepherding included—the figure is full of meaning. There had been a good deal of Jacob about Jacob and he had tried to shepherd himself. Poor sheep that he was, while under his own guidance he had been caught in many thorns and had wandered in many wildernesses. Because he would be so much a shepherd to himself, he had been hard put to it. But over all, despite his wilfulness, the shepherding of the Covenant God had been exercised towards him and he acknowledged it.

O dear saints of God, you to whom years are being multiplied, give praise to your God for having been your Shepherd! You delight in the 23rd Psalm—sing it sometimes with variations by using the past tense—”The Lord has been my Shepherd and I have known no need. He has made me to lie down in green pastures; He has led me beside the still waters. Yes, though I have walked through the valley of the shadow of death in times of great darkness, yet I have feared no evil: for He has been with me, His rod and His staff have comforted me.” Bear your witness to the shepherding of God, for this may lead others to become the sheep of His pasture.

This shepherding had been perfect. Our version rightly says that the Lord had fed Jacob all his life long. Take that sense of it and you who have a daily struggle for subsistence will see much beauty in it. Jacob had a large family and yet they were fed. Some of you say, “It is all very well of you to talk of Providence when you have few to provide for.” I answer, it is better, still, to talk of Providence where a large household requires large provision! Remember Jacob had 13 children, yet his God provided them bread to eat and clothes to put on. None of that large company were left to starve.

You think, perhaps, that Jacob was a man of large estate. He was not so when he began life. He was only a working man—a shepherd. When he left his father’s house he had no attendants with camels and tents. I suppose he carried his little bit of provision in a handkerchief and when he laid down that night to sleep, with a stone for his pillow, the hedges for curtains, the heavens for his canopy, and the earth for his bed, he had no fear of being robbed.

God was with him, but apart from that, he had nothing to begin life with but his own hands. Whatever he received from his father Isaac afterwards, he had at first to fight his own way—but he knew no lack either at the beginning or at the end, for he could speak of the great Elohim as, “the God which fed me all my life long.” Hundreds of us can say the same! I remember one who came to be wealthy who used to show me with great pleasure the tree axle of the truck in which he used to wheel his goods through the streets when he began in business—I liked to see him mindful of his original.

Mind you do not go and say, “See how I have got on by my own talents and industry!” Talk not so proudly, but say, “GOD HAS FED ME.” Mercies are all the sweeter when seen to come from the hand of God.
But besides being FED, Jacob had been LED, even as sheep are guided by the shepherd who goes before them. His journeys, for that period, had been unusually long, perilous and frequent. He had fled from home to Padanaram. After long years he had come back to Canaan and had met his brother, Esau. And after that, in his old age he had journeyed into Egypt. To go to California or New Zealand in these times is nothing at all compared to those journeys in Jacob’s day! But he says, “God has shepherded me all my life long” and he means that the great changes of his life had been wisely ordered. At home and in exile, in Canaan and in Goshen, God had been a shepherd to him. He sees the good hand of God upon him in all his wanderings, until he now finds himself sitting up on his bed and blessing Joseph through his sons.

Oh that the Holy Spirit may make you feel that you need God with you with wealth as much as your fathers needed God without wealth! You may yet come to beggary with all your inheritance if you cast off the fear of the Lord and fall into sin. You who begin life with nothing but your own brains and hands, trusting in your father’s God, shall yet have to sing as your fathers sang, “the God which fed me all my life long.”

Young men and young women beginning life, I charge you seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness! It is not life to live without God—you miss the kernel, the cream, the crown of life if you miss the Presence of God! Life is but a bubble blown up of toil and trouble without God! Life ends in blighted hope if you have not hope in God. But with God you are as a sheep with a Shepherd—cared for, guided, guarded, fed, led—and your end shall be peace without end!

GOD’S FAITHFULNESS TO HIS OWN

morning-by-morning

GOD’S FAITHFULNESS TO HIS OWN

C.H. Spurgeon

“Great is Thy faithfulness!” [Lam 3:23]

“What a consolation it is that our God never changes! What he was yesterday he is today. What we find him today we shall find him for ever. Are you struggling against sin? Don’t struggle in your own strength: it is God who performeth all things for you…In the hand of Jesus all his people are, and in that hand they shall be for ever and ever. ‘None shall pluck them out of my hand,’ saith He. Their preservation shall be perfected. So, too, their sanctification.

Every child of God is set apart by Christ, and in Christ, and the work of the Spirit has commenced which shall subdue sin, and extirpate the very roots of corruption; and this work shall be perfected; nay, is being perfected at this very moment… He is perfecting us in all things for himself. He has promised to bring us to glory. We have the earnest of that great glory in us now. The new life is there; all the elements of heaven are within us. Now He will perfect all these. He will not suffer one good thing that He has planted within us to die. It is a living and incorruptible seed, which liveth and abideth for ever. He will perfect all things for us. There is nothing that makes the saints complete but what God will give to us. There shall be lacking us no one trait of loveliness that is needful for the courtiers of the skies; no one virtue that is necessary in us.

What a marvellous thing is a Christian! How mean; how noble! How abject;how august! How near to hell; how close to heaven! How fallen, yet lifted up! Able to do nothing; yet doing all things! Doing nothing; yet accomplishing all things; because herein it is that, in the man, and with the man, there is God, and He performeth all things for us. God, give us grace to look away entirely, evermore, from ourselves, and to depend entirely upon Him.”