We must begin with God, as sinners, on the principle of faith, and go on with Him to the end, as saints, on the same principle. "The just shall live by faith." (See Rom. 1: 17; Gal. 3: 11; Heb. 10: 38; taken from Hab. 2: 4.)
This prophecy of Habakkuk has great moral value for us. But besides this, it is seasonable now; for in this our day things a ...read
Genesis 16 - 25.
Abraham had already received the promise of a seed; so, by faith in that promise (trusting God as the quickener of the dead), he was now standing in righteousness before Him. (Gen. 15.)
That promise, I may observe, had not mentioned Sarah in connection with the Seed, but there was strong intimation that she was to be the mother ...read
This book is a witness how rapidly declension sets in, and fresh corruption follows upon restoration and blessing.
Return to Jerusalem from captivity in Babylon was made at the opening of the Book of Ezra, with great brightness and promise. Thousands left Babylon; and they who remained behind helped them with their goods; and a general awakening o ...read
Heaven and Earth
"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." The scene of the divine handiwork was twofold; and, accordingly, "in the dispensation of the fulness of times," God will display Himself again, both in heaven and on earth.
I would begin my meditation on this divine subject with Genesis 1 - 47, which presents, I judge, a beautiful view of th ...read
Herod and John
How significant of the heart of man it was when Herod, hearing of the works of Christ, said, "It is John, whom I beheaded." A bad conscience is a very lively principle. It acts at once. It takes alarm at the shaking of a leaf. It makes cowards of us all. So was it with king Herod. His conscience kept the image of the murdered man before him, and th ...read
Hosea prophesied in the prospect of the breaking up of the kingdom of the ten tribes, and near the end of the house of Jehu. He is full of the thought of the ruin that was at hand; but he anticipates scenes of restoration and glory beyond it. As I may express it, the death and resurrection of Israel is contemplated by him, and announced under diffe ...read
Interesting Reminiscences of the Early History of "Brethren."
When I call to mind some of the early facts connected with the history of the "Brethren," as for distinction I will call them, I am impressed with a sense of there having been at that time a very independent and original teaching of the Spirit of God.
I do not doubt that however they may have aided one another afterwards or grown together in the u ...read
Genesis 25 - 27.
In the former papers, entitled ENOCH, NOAH, and ABRAHAM, I have followed the course of the Book of Genesis, down to the end of Gen. 24. I now propose to take it up from thence, and follow it on through chapters 25 - 27; Isaac, after Abraham, being the principal person there.
There is, however, but little in his history, and lit ...read
Isaiah 52: 13-53
Until we discover the distinctness and order of the parts of any piece of writing, we are not in a position for interpreting it in detail. All careful readers of the scriptures must have found that the arrangement of the several books into chapters and verses, as adopted in the Authorised Version, does not serve the most important end of arrangemen ...read
In the last days, when the things of Israel become the subject of divine notice again, we know that two Objects will present themselves--the nation in a state of apostacy, and the remnant in the midst of them. It will be like the two at one mill, or in one bed, between whom the day of the Lord is to make solemn discernment. But as this will be so i ...read
Israel and Jerusalem in the Times of Refreshing
Zech. 12: 10, to the end of the book.
The interpretation of such prophetic scriptures belongs to Israel, yet, in principle, we have our portion.
The Spirit is here telling of the ways of God with Israel in days yet to come.
1st. The Spirit of grace and of supplication is poured upon them--they mourn for their sin. Thus we see them convicted of ...read
Genesis 28: 10 - 20: 32.
Jacob had offended the Lord, having taken the way of nature, listening to the counsel of unbelief and thus departing from his path and his call as a saint of God. He is therefore put under discipline--for he has to learn the bitterness of his own way.
His place, that very night on which he left his father's house, witne ...read
Jacob in Egypt
In conflicts, as one has said, not only is Satan defeated, but the tried saint learns fresh secrets about his own feebleness and the resources and grace of God. So, I may add, in the wanderings of the heart, in departure from the power of faith and hope, not only is the soul chastened and exercised, but it learns, to God's glory, that it must come ...read
Jacob in Genesis 28 - 36
Genesis 28 - 36.
Have already followed the course of the Book of Genesis to the close of chapter 27. From that chapter to chapter 36, Jacob is principal; and it is that portion which I now purpose to consider.
There is a very important era in the life of Jacob afterwards--his sojourn in Egypt for seventeen years, and his death there. But th ...read
Jehovah, Jesus,--Son of David and Son of God
In reading the Holy Scriptures we should remember that they do not simply contain a rule of life and conduct, but that they are a revelation of God, so as to lead us into the knowledge of Him in Jesus Christ, and thus into life eternal. He that was "in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared Him. "I have manifested Thy name," says the Lord, "unto ...read
Jeremiah and the Times
Feel very much the character of this present time through which we are passing. The great powers that are destined to fill out the actions of Christendom's closing day are practising themselves, each in its several sphere, with great earnestness and skill. These powers are the civil and ecclesiastical.
I do not doubt but that, for a season, the ec ...read
Jesus Christ come in Flesh
The ark and the camp were, in some sense, necessary to each other during the journey through the wilderness. The ark, seated in the tabernacle on which the cloud rested, had to guide the camp; and the camp, in its order, had to accompany and guard the ark and all connected with it.
This was the business of the camp. There was to be subjection to t ...read
James 5: 11.
"Behind a frowning providence
He hides a smiling face"
May surely be said, upon the reading of this deeply affecting story. Said, too, with peculiar fitness and fulness of truth, as though the thought of the Christian poet had been suggested by the tale of the inspired historian. The frown was specially dark and lowering, the smile ...read
The age of this prophet is not given to us. From this, we might say, it matters not when he flourished: but we may say the same also from the character of his prophecy. And thus the silence of the Spirit on that point is more than accounted for: it is justified.
He delivered the word of the Lord in some day of sore national calamity, when either a ...read
John, the Penman of the Apocalypse
In the progress of this book we see John moved by different affections. He trembles in Rev. 1: 17; he weeps in Rev. 5: 4; he wonders with great admiration in Rev. 17: 6; he loses himself in worshipping delight in Rev. 19: 10 and Rev. 22: 8.
That is, he trembles in the presence of the judicial glory of the Son of man; he weeps at the sight of a sea ...read