The Lord’s Testing and Love

A number of years ago a Christian blacksmith who suffered much was challenged by an unbeliever to account for it.

His explanation was this: “I don’t know if I can account for these things to your satisfaction, but I think I can to my own. I am a blacksmith. I often take a piece of iron and put it into the fire and bring it to a white heat. Then I put it on the anvil and strike it once or twice to see if it will take temper. If I think it will, I plunge it into water, and suddenly change the temperature. Then I put it into the fire again, and again I put it in water. This I repeat several times. Then I put it on the anvil and hammer it, and bend it, and rasp and file it, and make some useful article which will do service for many years. If, however, when I first strike it on the anvil, I think it will not take temper, I throw it into the scrap pile and sell it for a few cents a pound.
“I believe my God and Father has been testing me to see if I will take temper. He has put me into the fire and into the water. I have tried to bear it as patiently as I could, and my daily prayer has been, ‘Lord, put me into the fire if You will; put me into the water if You think I need it; do anything You please, Lord, only don’t throw me into the scrap pile.'”
Our life is like the face of a clock. The hands are God’s hands passing over – the short hand of discipline and the long hand of mercy.
Slowly and surely the Hand of discipline must pass, and God speaks at every hour; but over and over passes the Hand of mercy, showering us sixty-fold of blessings for each stroke of discipline and trial; and both hands are fastened to one secure pivot – the great unchanging heart of a God of love.
“. . . The trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:7).
{Grace & Truth, 215 Oak St., Hillery, Danville, Ill. 61832.}
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QUOTE

“Submit yourselves therefore to God.  Resist the devil, and he will
flee from you.”  James 4:7
“If ye continue in my Word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And
ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”  John 8: 31-32
“It is not wickedness to be harassed by bad thoughts if you resist them.
It is satan’s effort to get you to adopt them, and thus you are sifted.
You will find, if you keep near the Lord, that you are more established
after an assault of the kind than you were before; and the only way
to combat satan’s attacks is by the Word…If satan can lead you to
become indifferent to these assaults, then they will lead you to great
damage; but if, on the contrary, they urge you to be more dependent
on the Lord Himself and on His Word, they will eventually cease, and you
will be ‘settled.’  J. B. Stoney
After you have suffered awhile make you perfect [mature], stablish,
strengthen, settle you.”  1 Peter 5:10

PRESSED! Author Unknown

Pressed out of measure, and pressed to all length;
Pressed so intensely it seems beyond strength;


Pressed in the body and pressed in the soul;
Pressed in the mind till the dark surges roll;


Pressure by foes, and pressure by friends;
Pressure on pressure till life nearly ends.


Pressed into knowing no helper but God;
Pressed into loving the staff and the rod;


Pressed into liberty where nothing clings;
Pressed into faith for impossible things;


Pressed into living a life in the Lord;
Pressed into living a Christ-life outpoured.

LOVE OF THE WORLD?

“Do not love the world nor the things in the world.  If anyone loves the world*, the love
of the Father is not in him.  For all that is in the world*, the lust of the flesh and the lust of
the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world.
The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God
lives forever.”  1 John 2: 15-17
(*contemporary culture)
“May we find our joy in Him, not pursuing a life of our own hearts, but a life of His grace
and goodness, and may He keep our hearts fixed on Him and on a crown with Him.”
(J.N. Darby, First Epistle of John)
“They (some believers) want the so called deeper life but they want the world, too…  let
them find out.”  Miles Stanford

LOVEST THOU ME?

Love of Christ the only right motive.” The central meaning is that love

of Himself is the only motive which gives to service a value in the eyes

of the Lord. Three times our Lord asks Peter if he loves Him, and in

answer to Peter’s confession that he does love Him, and that the Lord

knows that he loves Him, the Lord thrice commissions Peter for service.

Lovest thou me? Feed my lambs. John 21:15

We sometimes pray that we may have a love for souls; we even pray

that we may have “a great burden” for souls. I have known young people,

who are preparing for missionary work, to pray that they might have a great

love for the people in Africa, or whatever the chosen field might be. But

Peter is not asked if he loves the lambs and if he loves the sheep. You can

see how that motive would break down. The question is,

Lovest thou me? —John 21:16

Then feed “my lambs,” “my sheep.” Any any other motive in service is not,

with Christ, a sufficient motive.

How many of us…are serving out of mere denominational loyalty and zeal,

or out of our deep interest in some organization in which we are officers

or members? I believe there is great need for deep heart-searching just

at this point. Is the central motive of our service personal love for Him?

And is this the one test which we propose to ourselves every day in our

service?

(excerpt from “In Many Pulpits”….Dr. C.I. Scofield)

THE WORLD……F.B. Hole

The world system is doomed. Let there be no hesitancy in our witness to this fact. Out of the impending catastrophe souls are being rescued by the abounding grace of our Lord. It is ours to seek them, bearing witness to our Lord Jesus Christ. Let us then not waste time in vain attempts to shore up the tottering fabric, but let us busy ourselves in that which is the great work which our Lord has allotted to us. To be thoroughly for Him and His interests, is to be thoroughly outside the world system and its hopes.

We look, not for a perfected system of democracy, but for “the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: who shall change our vile body that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body” (Phil. 3:2021), and as for this earth, we look for the setting up of the kingdom of Christ by the God of heaven, which shall never be destroyed but shall stand for ever.

F. B. Hole

 

“not unto us O Lord not unto us but unto Thy Name give glory for His mercy and for Thy truth’s sake” (Psalm 115:1). F.B. Hole lived and laboured in the certainty of the resurrection life, and in the promise of the vision of perfect blessedness because he believed in a living Redeemer. During the last conversation Mr.Blackburn had with him, Mr. Hole said “I have had at times to occupy myself with the subtleties of the Faith but now that I am very old I have come back to simple things.

He was a humble man. His contributions at fellowship meetings were usually brief but very worthwhile. His hymn in Spiritual Songs is no. 159, “O God of Grace whose saving power”. How true the fourth line, more evident now 33 years after his death: “The ranks of faith grow thinner”. The writer of these notes can remember Mr. Hole’s illustrating the difference between appropriation and assimilation by the following stories:

“Some boys were playing marbles when along came a bully who stole the marbles and put them in his pocket and ran off. The boys chased him and eventually overpowered him and made him restore their marbles to them. He had appropriated them but they did not become part of him. But a boy is about to eat an apple and another boy comes and steals it and runs off. The boy follows him and catches him but there was nothing left but the core. The apple was now assimilated into the thief’s system”.

Mr Hole was emphasising the need for formation by assimilating the Word of God into our spiritual lives.

THE SECRET OF TRUE FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD’S SERVANTS