Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Smart: the flowers

Wednesday, June 23, 2021
    Feast of Etheldreda, Abbess of Ely, c.678
Meditation:
    [Jesus:] “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.”
    —Matthew 6:28-29 (NIV)
Quotation:
For the flowers are great blessings.
For the Lord made a Nosegay in the meadow with his disciples and preached upon the lily...
For the flowers have great virtues for all senses.
For the flower glorifies God and the root parries the adversary.
For the flowers have their angels even the words of God’s creation...
For there is a language of flowers.
For there is a sound reasoning upon all flowers.
For elegant phrases are nothing but flowers.
For flowers are peculiarly the poetry of Christ.
    ... Christopher Smart (1722-1771), Jubilate Agno [1759], R. Hart-Davis, 1954, p. 105 (see the book)
    See also Matt. 6:28-29; Ps. 103:15-16; Jas. 1:10
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, Your creation praises You.
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Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Tauler: a judging spirit

Tuesday, June 22, 2021
    Feast of Alban, first Martyr of Britain, c.209
Meditation:
    [Jesus:] “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
    —Luke 6:37-38 (NIV)
Quotation:
    He who desires to become a spiritual man must not be ever taking note of others, and above all of their sins, lest he fall into wrath and bitterness, and a judging spirit towards his neighbors.
    ... Johannes Tauler (ca. 1300-1361), “Sermon for St. Peter’s Day,” in The History and Life of the Reverend Doctor John Tauler of Strasbourg, Charles Kingsley, pref. & Susanna Winkworth, tr., New York: Wiley & Halsted, 1858, p. 462 (see the book)
    See also Luke 6:37-38; Rom. 9:22-23; 2 Tim. 4:2
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, You have looked past my sin; teach me to do the same to others.
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Monday, June 21, 2021

Hodge: original sin

Monday, June 21, 2021
Meditation:
    I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me.
    —Romans 7:18-21 (NIV)
Quotation:
    We are a fallen race. Our nature has become corrupted by our apostasy from God, and therefore every imagination (i. e., every exercise) of the thoughts of man’s heart is only evil continually... This is the Scriptural and the only rational solution of the undeniable fact of the deep, universal, and early manifested sinfulness of men in all ages, of every class, and in every part of the world.
    ... Charles Hodge (1797-1878), Systematic Theology, Londom, Edinurgh: Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1872, p. 238 (see the book)
    See also Gen. 8:21; Hos. 6:7; John 3:19; Rom. 3:23; 5:14-21; 7:18-21; Gal. 3:22; Eph. 2:1-2; 5:8-10
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, Your church begs You to use Your church for righteousness, for all we produce is sin.
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Sunday, June 20, 2021

Ellul: what God sends

Sunday, June 20, 2021
Meditation:
    This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.
    —1 John 4:2-3 (NIV)
Quotation:
    To do his work God does not send a book of metaphysics or a sacred book of Gnostic revelations or a complete epistemological system or a perfected wisdom. He sends a man.
    ... Jacques Ellul (1912-1994), The Subversion of Christianity, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, 1986, p. 24 (see the book)
    See also 1 John 4:2-3; Luke 2:10-12; 19:10; Acts 17:2-3; 1 Cor. 1:17,21-23; 2:6-10; Col. 2:8
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, You are truth in human form.
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Saturday, June 19, 2021

Sundar Singh: salt

Saturday, June 19, 2021
    Commemoration of Sundar Singh of India, Sadhu, Evangelist, Teacher, 1929
Meditation:
    [Jesus:] “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?”
    —Luke 14:34 (NIV)
Quotation:
    Salt, when dissolved in water, may disappear, but it does not cease to exist. We can be sure of its presence by tasting the water. Likewise, the indwelling Christ, though unseen, will be made evident to others from the love which he imparts to us.
    ... Sadhu Sundar Singh (1889-1929), Reality and Religion: meditations on God, man, and nature, London: Macmillan, 1924, p. 24-25 (see the book)
    See also Luke 14:34; Lev. 2:13; Num. 18:19; 2 Chr. 13:5; Matt. 5:13; Mark 9:50; Col. 4:6
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, sustain my “saltiness” with Your presence within.
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Friday, June 18, 2021

Kingsley: more than a Sunday religion

Friday, June 18, 2021
Meditation:
    [Jesus:] “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.”
    —Matthew 5:14-16 (NIV)
Quotation:
    One good man,—one man who does not put his religion on once a week with his Sunday coat, but wears it for his working dress, and lets the thought of God grow into him, and through and through him, till everything he says and does becomes religious, that man is worth a thousand sermons—he is a living Gospel—he comes in the spirit and power of Elias—he is the image of God. And men see his good works, and admire them in spite of themselves, and see that they are Godlike, and that God’s grace is no dream, but that the Holy Spirit is still among men, and that all nobleness and manliness is His gift, His stamp, His picture; and so they get a glimpse of God again in His saints and heroes, and glorify their Father who is in heaven.
    ... Charles Kingsley (1819-1875), Twenty-five Village Sermons, London: John W. Parker, 1858, p. 197-198 (see the book)
    See also Matt. 5:14-16; John 6:56; 14:16-17,23; Rom. 8:29-30; Col. 3:17; Tit. 2:9-14
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, may Your Holy Spirit work within me to transmit Your light to all around me.
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Thursday, June 17, 2021

Faber: Jesus is God! The solid earth

Thursday, June 17, 2021
    Commemoration of Samuel & Henrietta Barnett, Social Reformers, 1913 & 1936
Meditation:
    When he was gone, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified and God is glorified in him. If God is glorified in him, God will glorify the Son in himself, and will glorify him at once.”
    —John 13:31-32 (NIV)
Quotation:
Jesus is God! The solid earth,
    The ocean broad and bright,
The countless stars, like golden dust,
    That strew the skies at night,
The wheeling storm, the dreadful fire,
    The pleasant wholesome air,
The summer’s sun, the winter’s frost,
    His own creations were.

Jesus is God! The glorious bands
    Of golden angels sing
Songs of adoring praise to Him,
    Their Maker and their King.
He was true God in Bethlehem’s crib,
    On Calvary’s cross true God,
He who in heaven eternal reigned,
    In time on earth abode.

Jesus is God! There never was
    A time when He was not:
Boundless, eternal, merciful,
    The Word the Sire begot!
Backward our thoughts through ages stretch,
   ;  Onward through endless bliss,—
For there are two eternities,
    And both alike are His!

Jesus is God! Alas! they say
    On earth the numbers grow,
Who His Divinity blaspheme
    To their unfailing woe.
And yet what is the single end
    Of this life’s mortal span,
Except to glorify the God
    Who for our sakes was man?
    ... Frederick William Faber (1814-1863), Hymns, New York: E. P. Dutton, 1877, p. 38 (see the book)
    See also John 13:31-32; Ps. 33:6;90:2; Isa. 9:6; John 12:23; Rom. 1:21-23; Col. 1:16-17; Heb. 1:2-3; Rev. 4:11
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, we praise you as God and King in the glory granted by the Father.

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