Charles Spurgeon Evening Devotional

Jeremiah 32:17  “Ah Lord God, behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee.” 

 

At the very time when the Chaldeans surrounded Jerusalem, and when the sword, famine and pestilence had desolated the land, Jeremiah was commanded by God to purchase a field, and have the deed of transfer legally sealed and witnessed. This was a strange purchase for a rational man to make. Prudence could not justify it, for it was buying with scarcely a probability that the person purchasing could ever enjoy the possession. But it was enough for Jeremiah that his God had bidden him, for well he knew that God will be justified of all his children. He reasoned thus: “Ah, Lord God! thou canst make this plot of ground of use to me; thou canst rid this land of these oppressors; thou canst make me yet sit under my vine and my fig-tree in the heritage which I have bought; for thou didst make the heavens and the earth, and there is nothing too hard for thee.” This gave a majesty to the early saints, that they dared to do at God’s command things which carnal reason would condemn. Whether it be a Noah who is to build a ship on dry land, an Abraham who is to offer up his only son, or a Moses who is to despise the treasures of Egypt, or a Joshua who is to besiege Jericho seven days, using no weapons but the blasts of rams’ horns, they all act upon God’s command, contrary to the dictates of carnal reason; and the Lord gives them a rich reward as the result of their obedient faith. Would to God we had in the religion of these modern times a more potent infusion of this heroic faith in God. If we would venture more upon the naked promise of God, we should enter a world of wonders to which as yet we are strangers. Let Jeremiah’s place of confidence be ours-nothing is too hard for the God that created the heavens and the earth.

 

The Ambulance Corps

Georges Matheson who was a devout servant of Christ died in 1906. This man of God talked about three classes in the Christian life. The first group is considered to be people like Matheson himself, Aiden Tozer, John Edwards, J.C. Ryle, Moody, Spurgeon etc. Note that, these people I have listed above are my preferences. These are the type of people the Holy Spirit entrusted me to when I was thirsty for Him. As such I have confidence in who they were in Christ. One that I have learned to admire in our time is Pastor Paul Washer. Him and I seem to have taken one module together from Christ’s University which is Boldness. (Not to be confused with the boldness from the flesh without going through the humility process that He provides through pain and intimacy with Him)

The Church is made up mostly of the invalid ones, those that are on the couch and seem to be in constant need of care. They never outgrow the need to be cared for. The ambulance Corps are those who follow just for the sake of following in spite of being anonymous. There is no glory, there is no spotlight on them, and there is no one who would ever write their memoirs. To begin with they seem to be uninteresting to the naked eyes. These men and women of God are found almost everywhere in every walk of life. Yet they give and keep giving of themselves to the Lord, to be used without hindering Him. While they are in the background, but, God knows who they are. So, I leave you with George Matheson’s own writings and his own words. May God have mercy on us and bring us to a place where we can all be part of the Ambulance corps.

 

THE AMBULANCE CORPS.

These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever He goeth. “—Revelation 14: 4.

There are three classes in the Christian Life — the men of the wing, the men of the

couch, and the men of the road. The first are those who fly before ; they are the

pioneers of progress, they are in advance of  their fellows. The second are those who

stand still, or rather lie still ; they are the invalids of the human race ; they come not

to minister, but to be ministered unto. The third are those who follow ; they are the am-

bulance corps of humanity; they are the sacrificial souls that come on behind. I think

with St. John that these last are the most beautiful souls of all. They are lovely in

their unobtnisiveness. They do not wish to lead, they would rather be in the rear ; they

come forward only when others are driven backward. They want no glory from the

battle, no wreath for the victory, no honourable mention amid the heroes. They seek

the wounded, the dying, the dead. They anoint for life’s burial, they bring spices for

the crucified, they give the cup of cold water they wash the soiled feet. They break the

fall of Adam ; they break the fall of Magdalene. They take in Saul of Tarsus after he

becomes blind. They are attracted by defects, they are lured by every form to

helplessness. They come out to meet the shadows; they go in the track, not of the lark,

but of the nightingale ; they follow the Lamb.

 

Captain of salvation, put me in the rear of Thine army — with the ambulance corps ! It

is not for the sake of safety that I ask it ; it is not to be relieved from the burden and the

heat of the day that I wish to be in the rear. It is because I think the trouble is greater

there ; it is because I see more room for sacrifice, more chance of doing good. There

are some whom Thou sendest before Thee — angels of the everlasting gospel who fly in

advance over the face of heaven. Speed them, bless them! But I am not fitted to be

one of these ; I am not swift enough, I am not brilliant enough. Put me in a sphere

where swiftness is not wanted, where brilliancy is not required ! Give me the trouble

without the glitter, O Lord ! Let others lead !— I am content to follow. Be Thou my rear-

ward ! Help me to serve Thee in the background! Is it not written, “They that tarry

at home divide the spoil.” I cannot fight Thy battles, but I can nurse Thy wounded.

I cannot repel Thy foes, but I can repair Thy fortress. I cannot conduct Thy marches, but

I can succour those who have fainted by the way. Write my name amongst those who

follow Thee!

The Lies & Shame Of Backsliding

Jeremiah 2:21-24

I had planted you like a choice vine of sound and reliable stock. How then did you turn against me into a corrupt, wild vine? Although you wash yourself with soda and use an abundance of soap, the stain of your guilt is still before me, declares the Sovereign Lord. How can you say, I am not defiled; I have not run after the Baals? See how you behaved in the valley consider what you have done. You are a swift she-camel running here and there, a wild donkey accustomed to the desert, sniffing the wind in her craving—in her heat who can restrain her? Any males that pursue her need not tire themselves; at mating time they will find her.

The Israelites were lavished by God with the highest privileges. But instead of worship the God who loved and honored them by making them His choice over all the other nations, they became the worst idolaters that existed in their time. They were corrupted to the core and had become useless to God. When we read those verses we see the depth of their denial and the madness of backsliding motion. They left Him, completely disobeyed His Word at all levels and all the facts were against them. They had the audacity to deny who they truly were in the presence of God. They pretended that all their sins of idolatry were not so, and if anything, God is the one who misunderstood.

Isn’t like most of us Christians today? We sin as if God was dead or blind and deaf. We are devoid of reverence for Him. We do not love Him to care enough to become rooted and grounded in the faith. We try to fool Him with ritual and entrench ourselves in service, for His benefits. The worse part of our madness is that true repentance evades us. Most of us are in complete denial of who we truly are when it comes to being Christians. Yet, our actions show what is in our heart which is the incessant need to cover up who we truly are.

If we were true to the faith, and knew how to examine ourselves, we would know and see with our spiritual eyes. The fact that we need to cover up who we truly are and the fact that we still need to wear masks to deal with day to day life and our interactions with other people, should be an indication of how much we need Him and how far we are from being true Christians. There are some of us calling ourselves Christians, yet we upstage Pharaoh with his hardened heart. Sadly, like the Israelites, sin is eating us alive like we have leprosy, yet we have the audacity to make the same claim they made in verse 23 “I am not defiled; I have not gone after other gods.”

How sad? How pathetic to reach such a low state where we think we can convince God otherwise and that He will not be wiser?

PRAYER: Lord, like the Israelites, we messed up really bad. We are running like sheep with no pastures to rest and no shepherd. Lord, pride, blindness, ignorance, and the lust in our hearts are too much to bear. Day in day out, we are committing spiritual suicide with no regards for you. We have reached a point of no return. Please shake us up, do what needs to be done to get us out of that frame of mind, and out of our lethargy. Help us face who we truly are so we can stop the backsliding mode that we are in. Give us eyes to see and hearts to repent my Lord.

Please visit my website www.apprehended.ca

God’s Thoughts Vs Our Human thoughts

 

Isaiah 55:8-9 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord”.

I felt it was important for me to write about God’s thoughts Vs our human thoughts because those who never experienced Him, along with those who believe only in their heads but not in their hearts are in no better position than an unbeliever in their understanding of who God is. While a Christian might have a different explanation of whom God is, this does not change the fact that if you do not know Him personally, then you do not know Him. It simply means that you have learned the lingo because you have immersed yourself in the Christian culture. In fact, until you experience God all that you have is data tucked away. This is the primary reason why Salvation is so misunderstood by His very own and the false prophets are flourishing. We have not armed ourselves for warfare.

While we have to be cautious not to seek experience because we can be caught up in sensationalism and never really walk with Him. If we look too much for sensation Satan has no problem disguising himself as an angel to keep us in bondage of wanting just that. It is equally important to apply caution in what you call Christianity, if after years and years of claiming to be Christian, the Holy Spirit has never manifested Himself to you, there is a problem there too.

Why? Because the Holy Spirit’s job is to make the life we have in God real to us. It is the Holy Spirit’s job to witness to your soul that you are a child of God. You either believe that or God is a liar. The Holy Spirit works in us is proof that we have been sealed; it is His stamp of ownership that we have become children of God. In John 16:13 we are told:  “But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. ” With that in mind, you have to stop lying to yourself and take ownership for the lack of holy spirit’s activities in your life. You do not want to die and find out you were too proud to accept the fact that all you had was in vain.

When we read the Bible we are able to understand what we read with our intellect which was given to us by God so we can function in this realm. But when God speaks, the same God who has the intricate mind and unlimited power to create the world, His words are wrapped up in all these things that we can see and cannot see. His word personifies wisdom that we can never possess, intellect that we have not seen or heard of. Each tiny word that He utters also contains justice, love, wrath, and holiness etc. Everything that makes God, who He is wrapped up in everything He says. The understanding we have been given by God could be easily compared to something like someone with gazillions of dollars, then he gives you five bucks while it is nice, but in comparison to what he has you can easily say you do not have much.

Every word that He utters means all that He is. Because He is who He is, then it makes sense that we do not have the wisdom or the capacity to understand what He says. In a vision I had while spending time with Him, He showed me with sadness that His idea of Salvation for us is as big as the ocean. I remember standing there with this giant God of mine, and I still remember His sadness when He showed me how much we misunderstood His plan because we all ran with our own understanding and our own plan. As I contemplated the vastness of the ocean and the understanding that He gave me right then and there to grasp a tiny bit of His plan for us, strangely, my next step was to open up my left hand, I realized the Salvation I was holding onto was as small as a marble in the palm of my hand, then I dropped it. After I dropped it, I went straight to Him as if I wanted to embrace Him, but He was so big, when I moved toward Him I could not reach pass His feet.

My point is that when we read God’s Word, we should always keep in mind that there is another level of understanding we need from the Spirit which is the understanding that comes from God’s point of view. We cannot hold onto our own understanding that we grasp with our weak and very limited mind, and be content with what we have. Our thoughts and all our sentiments of this life He has in mind for us are different from His thoughts and what He had in mind when He set His plan of Salvation in motion.

This lack of understanding from a Godly perspective has caused the breach we see in the Church all over the world. Yes, Satan is behind it too. But who gave Satan so much power to gain so much terrain?  It is us in our pride and greed.  Can you understand the stupidity of saying Salvation is by Grace, yet we refuse to go to Him so that He can make us understand the full scope of it by His grace?  We reject the very same grace when we hold onto our feeble understanding like a dog holding onto a bone.  In our feeble mind and the pride of possessing some intellect, we reject that same grace we need for our Salvation. So, we sit there, while everyone can see we are just caterpillars, we get upset at anyone telling us we are not butterflies yet.

What I learned from experiencing God, is that we not only desperately need the Holy Spirit to permeate our lives and fulfill His role, but even when He graced us with an experience, we still do not have the mind to grasp all of what His word encompasses. All that we have written about the Holy Spirit’s role from the Scriptures should not be just words to us. God already knew we could not compete with His intellect, He purposed to give us the Holy Spirit to make this life real to us. This life does not get real when we die. But right now! We receive eternal life when we know God through Christ. And we do not know God, just because we have some rituals in our lives.  Every religion has rituals. As Christians our rituals should be the Holy Spirit.

So, how do we get to the point where He can permeate our lives?  I can only answer this by sharing my secret. I have always been humiliated as a child and more so in my adult life, so much so there was nothing left for me to feel puffed up in anything that pertains to me. To make matters worse, I am far from being an educated person. So instead of feeling sorry for myself, I decided to take God at His Word. It was not a big stretch for me to humble myself before Him. As for my childlike spirit, my brain has never been educated enough to know better. Somebody who knows me well said it is so easy for me to humble myself before God; I have no idea how hard it is for other people.

I know the God that I serve enough to know that if we truly want Him in our hearts; He is more than willing to make His Word come alive to us. If you are willing to leave your intellect behind and stop being puffed up when you approach Him, then you are on your way of finding what it means to have a child like faith and spirit. If all of it is still hard for you, then your prayer should be “Lord help me leave behind all my knowledge, my faulty understanding, my confidence in myself and be desperate enough to know your Word that I would approach your throne completely bankrupt.”   We should pray until we receive it. Pray until in your spirit you have become the perfect outcast model. He is the God of the outcasts.

This subject is so vast I could write all day. Because this post is so long, I will omit tomorrow’s post to give you time to read this one on Sunday

May the Spirit of truth accompany you while reading this post.

 Please visit my website www.apprehended.ca

 

Holiness

“Hebrews 12:14 tells us “Without holiness, no man shall see the Lord!

These are words we should not be reading lightly. Even after you know for sure, you are indeed holy, even then you still read these words with a sober thought in mind which is “Am I  walking in holiness?” The answer will be a big yes, just as long as you keep walking in the Spirit and keep walking in His light. It is indeed simple. Only the Holy Spirit, by putting the spotlight on us can show us the way to Holiness. Only He can teach us the difference between living with suppressed behavior and truly walking in Him, in the light of God.

Holiness has nothing to do with our zeal for Him, with our rank in the world or outward respectability. It has nothing to do with our knowledge of God’s Word, or how our pastors see us. It is not about having religion, attending services or going to Church. The Bible is filled with these types of people and they were not holy and one that comes to mind is Jehu.  Another misconception is that we tend to think that holiness is something we receive slowly as we go through life.  Holiness is like pregnancy, you are either pregnant or not. You are either holy or not. Which is not to be confused with Christ working through us gradually to perfect our holiness. That’s another stage of our walk with Him.

The bible has oodles of references if we want to draw a picture of a holy man or woman. A good book that is free on the internet you can read about holiness, is written by J.C. Ryle, and titled “Holiness, its Nature, Hindrances, Difficulties” But, I have to caution you when you read such book you can either have a headache for days or you end up making a list of things to do and start walking with your suppressed behavior in order to get there. But, a suppressed behavior it’s not the same as walking in the Spirit.

While in the wilderness the Holy Spirit mentioned to me that I needed to move forward with Him toward holiness. In my simpleton mind, I did not understand, nor that I waited for Him, I left Him behind and set out to understand how I was going to make myself holy.  Suffice to say that after a few months I gave up it was all too much for me to bear. We tend to do the same thing again once we know for sure we have been made holy; we go crazy trying to find ways to keep our holiness intact, so we read books, and we start applying ourselves because somehow we think we can lose the holiness we received from Him. While it is partly true but this is a whole different story and it pertains to those who fall away.

I wish someone had told me that all I needed to do to walk in holiness before an after, is to cultivate His mind and remain plugged in His divine nature. If we practice that, then being a man or woman after His heart, practicing the sermon on  the mount in our lives, shunning sin, keeping His commands, walking in humility etc., are all to my knowledge and experience with Him, the fruit of holiness.   Holiness actually leads to a different level of Sanctification and no you are not holier than thou. The walk is still painful and most of the time mundane because this is the nature of the Christian journey.  So, you enter a different level of sanctification because the Spirit is perfecting your holiness which He continues until death when we will be perfectly holy.

In this walk of holiness, or as some call it, pursuing holiness” you learn to walk in His grace in steadfastness as you are chastised, tested, and refined by Him. In your afflictions you learn to persevere and endure through faith and His grace as you walk diligently while keeping your eyes on Him. In my opinion which is based on my experience with Him, the sermon on the mount are not some sort of rules we follow, but rather what He is able to work out in us as we pursue holiness.  Another thing we will also find that He works in us more and more is righteousness.

But two things we can be sure of,  are that holiness and righteousness do not come without holy afflictions which we are to go through while submitting to His hand on us. The second one is that this holiness and righteousness in question are not ours they are Christ’s.  Hence, this righteousness we are told in Mathew 5:20 that we are to possess until it surpasses the righteousness of the Pharisees, along with holiness cannot be worked out in us while living in the flesh. They are the work of the Holy Spirit as we go on in faith and grace apprehending this life we have in Him. They are worked in us solely by Him and in His own way.

As I explained in my book, it feels as if you are an embryo being fed in the mother’s womb through the tubes that connect you to her. Except that, the mother’s womb is none other than Christ’s. You are formed and fed, you live, you breathe, and you find life right there in Him. The nutrient that He is passing to us it is found through the blood He shed for us. It is His very life.

Beloved, it is indeed a phenomenal thing to be able to experience our spiritual life in Him! It is my biggest desire, and for some of you if you end up in Heaven, you will be able to see how much I prayed for all of you. I will continue to petition God until my last breathe, to revive hearts and take away the blindness so we could all learn to walk  and live in Him. I am begging you to believe me when I tell you there is a different Christianity  that most of us do not know of. It is one where you are led solely by the Spirit and you abide in oneness with Him. Please stop living in the flesh. You cannot hide from Him or lie to Him. This life in Him is real.  Open up your heart do not let Satan have a fiesta at your expense. Make that decision today!

I will leave you with a thought to ponder after Paul warned the Christians Galatians he said this in Galatians 6:6-8

“Let the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches.  Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.  For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.”

This blog is related to my newly released Christian book “Apprehended & Apprehending”. Feel free to get yourself a copy

 

Paperback on Amazon              Kindle on Amazon

Please visit my website www.apprehended.ca

Are You Walking In The Spirit?

 

Every time I read Galatians 5:16-25 I cannot help but ache for some Christians. In these verses, Paul is sharing with these precious believers that he loves so much yet he is in pain for them because they are in trouble with their Christian walk. The whole chapter is about how to preserve in the faith. While a lot of Christians enjoy putting a different spin on these types of warnings to go right back to the fact that God cannot lie as such they will be okay. I feel for them, because I was there too. I also feel for them because I know for fact, that the only reason someone who is in the Word would read certain warnings and lie to themselves and dismiss those warnings as if God can be manipulated into keeping His word, is the subtle work of Satan.

In our walk in the flesh, we have learned to redefine words such as immorality, filth, idols, ambitions, indecent etc, according to our own explanations and understanding. The truth is, we stop seeing the good in us only when we can see ourselves through His eyes. Only then, we have no illusion about who we are in the flesh. As this has become the truth we live by, we yearn to walk in the Spirit, because that is where He is found and that is where we find life.

As I shared in my book, a few years after I started my wilderness wanderings with God, the Holy Spirit started taking me in a direction where His will for me was to learn to walk in the Spirit. At the beginning I fought Him with everything I had, because I was confused. I heard it over and over again through various pastors and elders that as soon as you say the sinner’s prayer you walk in the Spirit. So, I basically sided with man’s explanations, rather than the Holy Spirit’s leading. (I am glad I came to my senses not long after that) to my surprise, I had no idea those sermons I was listening to, and those pastors and elders who were saying that Christians automatically walk in the Spirit were confused Biblically. That was a major stumbling block for me and it is still a major stumbling block for many Christians out there. There is a massive amount of Christians out there that has no idea what it means to walk in the Spirit. You either walk in the Spirit or you wing it.

Paul in Galatians 5 was talking to Christians, some he brought them to the Lord himself. We do not have to be drunk, practice witchcraft and have orgies like mentioned in verse 21, to belong to the category Paul was referring will not see the Kingdom of God. A true Christian makes it a point to walk in the Spirit. While it is difficult the first few years but, over time as you remain grounded in your identity in Him, you get the hang of it to the point where you know when you are in the flesh. That is because walking in the Spirit has become your lifestyle and who you are in Him.

Even Paul Himself found the secret of walking in the Spirit which has enabled him to translate from the Christian he was in Romans chapter 7, years later he became the Christian in Romans chapter 8. You would make a monumental error if you assume that Paul remained that shoddy Christian he was in Romans chapter 7. Furthermore, Paul basically gave us a command in Galatians 5:16 to walk in the Spirit “So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature.”

A while back I was talking to a couple, and sadly, the woman told me that it does not matter if she has never learned to walk in the Spirit because God made a promise as long as we believe in Christ, we are saved. I can tell she already has her defense planned.  In her mind, God is mute. I honestly could not dispute the woman, because in her blindness, she is not even able to think that God could ask her what exactly did you believe in that cause you to resemble to your father Satan. After all, Satan actually believes and he knows the Bible by heart. It isn’t for nothing that Scriptures said to us in John 8:44 “You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires.” What we do not know is that when we are called in front of His throne, we will have to stand there naked, everything stripped away, including excuses, but your lies, stubbornness, unwillingness and all that stops you from following after Him will remain.

I have been called to the light while I am down here, and it is not a pick nick. While you are there, there are three things you can be sure of: you are stripped of everything, shame and guilt are your companion, and you keep quiet because you cannot utter one word

I discussed this subject in depth in my newly released Christian book “Apprehended & Apprehending” and explained step by step how you get to walk in the Spirit.  The book is available on Amazon, and all fine bookstores.

 

 Paperback on Amazon              Kindle on Amazon

Please visit my website www.apprehended.ca

Claiming God’s Promises

 

Jeremiah 32: 39:41

“I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear me forever, for their own good and the good of their children after them. I will make with them an everlasting covenant that I will not turn away from doing good to them.  And I will put the fear of me in their hearts that they may not turn from me.” 

I was online reading a well crafted sermon about part b of Jeremiah 32:42 which is “ I will give them all the prosperity I have promised them.” . The writer went on and on about how faithful God is and He will never lie to us etc.  Since, I did not remember the verse by heart, I pulled out my Bible to read about Jeremiah 32.  Then I realized the writer omitted the fact that, while God promised to give prosperity to the Israelites, He had conditions in the previous verses that the writer neglected to mention. While it is true, God is faithful and will never lie to us, we would do well not to test Him while we stand on a few words that tickle our funny bones.

He promised in verses 39-41 that He would give them one heart, and that He would put His fear in their hearts so they would not turn away from Him. To sum up, verse 42 cannot be claimed by itself while neglecting the above verses. In Christianity we miss out on the fact that God Himself has given us a new heart to learn to fear Him and stay the course so we would not turn away from Him. This is extremely important.  This is why I tell people in my new released Christian book to examine themselves and if after a decade or more of Christianity they are still the same old plain Jane or John that accepted Christ and there has been no awareness of a supernatural transformation, they ought to go back to the basic.

We cannot stand there like lost sheep and tell people, oh yeah I am a Christian. What this claim amount to in your life matters very much to God. His promises are for those who have God’s fear in their hearts, they are kept in His ways and they are able to continue the path of Salvation they are on. We tend to think that the passage in Mathew 7:22 is not for us “Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name? Didn’t we force out demons and do many miracles by the power and authority of your name?” A lot of us in the church love to think that this passage is only for some. It is equally for those Church goers who have never gotten to the point where they were changed by the Salvation they claimed they have received.

In the new heart we receive from Him, if we believe, then the next step is to trust Him and have confidence in Him to walk the walk He put us on. So, we not only receive conversion by His grace, we learn to walk and persevere through the Holy Spirit, by His grace, So, if you have not been transformed inwardly because of what you believe, then I am afraid all your beliefs are floating around your head and they have not even made ways to your mind, let alone your heart. Examine yourself, unless you believe in vain.

PRAYER: Father God I pray that together we learn to walk in unison according to your word. I pray that we would learn to be people after your own heart. That we would make it our joy to honor your covenant with us so together we might enjoy the life we have in you now and future blessings awaiting us. May the ascended Christ help us to examine our hearts so we do not believe in vain and end up disqualified when it is too late.

Check out my Website www.apprehended,ca

 

Living Out A Never Ending Love Story With My Master & Redeemer!

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