Saturday, April 24, 2021

Owen: living faith

Saturday, April 24, 2021
    Commemoration of Mellitus, First Bishop of London, 624
Meditation:
    In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
    —James 2:17 (NIV)
Quotation:
    Faith, if it be a living faith, will be a working faith.
    ... John Owen (1616-1683), An Exposition of the Epistle to the Hebrews, ch. VI-VII, in Works of John Owen, v. XXII, London: Johnson & Hunter, 1855, p. 163 (see the book)
    See also Jas. 2:14-17; 1 Thess. 1:3; Eph. 2:8-9; 1 Tim. 1:5; 2 Pet. 1:5-9
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, Your gift of faith energizes Your people.
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Friday, April 23, 2021

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Pierce: reckless giving

Friday, April 23, 2021
    Feast of George, Martyr, Patron of England, c.304
    Commemoration of Michael Ramsey, Archbishop of Canterbury, Teacher, 1988
Meditation:
    He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?
    —Romans 8:32 (NIV)
Quotation:
    May the Spirit of God help you to give of yourself as recklessly for the cause of Christ throughout the whole world as God “recklessly” gave His Son, Jesus Christ.
    ... Robert Pierce (1914-1978), founder and president, World Vision, in a private communication from World Vision
    See also Rom. 8:32; Isa. 53:10; John 3:16,17; Rom. 12:1-2; 2 Cor. 5:21
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, I have cast my life upon Your will.
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Thursday, April 22, 2021

Neill: leadership of the church

Thursday, April 22, 2021
Meditation:
    Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went.
    —Acts 8:4 (NIV)
Quotation:
    Is the leadership of the world-wide church in the hands of men and women who know how to lead others one by one to Jesus Christ? We are so concerned with planning and administration that there is a danger lest we allow these things to serve as an excuse for not doing the one thing on which all else depends.
    ... Stephen Neill (1900-1984), “The Church in a Revolutionary World”, in International Review of Mission, v. XXXVI, p. 451 (see the book)
    See also Acts 8:4; Matt. 10:23; John 4:21-24; Acts 11:19; 14:2-7; 1 Thess. 2:2
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, do not let our focus stray.
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Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Brother Lawrence: nearer than we know

Wednesday, April 21, 2021
    Feast of Anselm, Abbot of Le Bec, Archbishop of Canterbury, Teacher, 1109
Meditation:
The LORD is near to all who call on him,
    to all who call on him in truth.
    —Psalm 145:18 (NIV)
Quotation:
    Lift up your heart to Him, sometimes even at your meals, and when you are in company; the least little remembrance will always be acceptable to Him. You need not cry very loud; he is nearer to us than we are aware of.
    ... Brother Lawrence (c.1605-1691), The Practice of the Presence of God, New York, Revell, 1895, Seventh Letter, p. 34 (see the book)
    See also Ps. 145:18; 25:1-2; 34:18; Matt. 26:26; Luke 24:30; John 14:23; 1 Tim. 2:8; Jas. 4:8
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, You remain close to those who love You.
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Tuesday, April 20, 2021

de Sales: call it as it is

Tuesday, April 20, 2021
Meditation:
With his mouth the godless destroys his neighbor,
    but through knowledge the righteous escape.
    —Proverbs 11:9 (NIV)
Quotation:
    While extremely sensitive as to the slightest approach to slander, you must also guard against an extreme into which some people fall who, in their desire to speak evil of no one, actually uphold and speak well of vice. If you have to do with one who is unquestionably a slanderer, do not excuse him by calling him frank and free-spoken; do not call one who is notoriously vain, liberal and elegant; do not call dangerous levities mere simplicity; do not screen disobedience under the name of zeal; or arrogance of frankness; or evil intimacy of friendship. No, my friends, we must never, in our wish to shun slander, foster or flatter vice in others: but we must call evil evil, and sin sin, and so doing we shall serve God’s glory.
    ... François de Sales (1567-1622), Introduction to the Devout Life [1609], London: Rivingtons, 1876, III.xxix, p. 246 (see the book)
    See also Prov. 11:9; Ps. 97:10; Amos 5:15; Jas. 1:19,26; Jude 1:4-5,14-16
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, correct my habit of excusing evil.
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Monday, April 19, 2021

Schaeffer: judgment of doctrine

Monday, April 19, 2021
    Commemoration of Alphege, Archbishop of Canterbury, Martyr, 1012
Meditation:
    Anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in the teaching of Christ does not have God; whoever continues in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take him into your house or welcome him. Anyone who welcomes him shares in his wicked work.
    —2 John 9-11 (NIV)
Quotation:
    The church is to judge whether a man is a Christian on the basis of his doctrine, the propositional content of his faith, and then his credible profession of faith. When a man comes before a local church that is doing its job, he will be quizzed on the content of what he believes. If, for example, a church is conducting a heresy trial (the New Testament indicates there are to be heresy trials in the church of Christ), the question of heresy will turn on the content of the man’s doctrine. The church has a right to judge, in fact it is commanded to judge, a man on the content of what he believes and teaches.
    ... Francis A. Schaeffer (1912-1984), The Mark of the Christian, Inter-Varsity Press, 1976, p. 16 (see the book)
    See also 2 John 1:9-11; Matt. 7:15; Rom. 16:17-18; Gal. 1:6-7; 3:1; 1 Tim. 4:16; 2 Tim. 4:3; Tit. 3:10-11
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, You have led Your people into truth with Your Spirit.
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Sunday, April 18, 2021

Underhill: the essential offertory

Sunday, April 18, 2021
Meditation:
    Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
    —Romans 12:1-2 (NIV)
Quotation:
    The offertory is the first essential action of the Liturgy, because in it we make the costly and solemn oblation, under tokens, of our very selves and all our substance; that they may be transformed, quickened, and devoted to the interests of God.
    ... Evelyn Underhill (1875-1941), The Mystery of Sacrifice, New York: Longmans, Green, 1938, p. 29 (see the book)
    See also Rom. 12:1-2; Gen. 22:12; Matt. 5:23-24; 19:21; Heb. 13:15-16
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, make my offering holy before You.
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