Monthly Archives: December 2018

Passing Days

Category : General

Psalm 90: 9(KJV)
9 For all our days are passed away in thy wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told.

We come to the close of another year. A year that in more ways than one was like a roller coaster. However, as we look back, we see many regrets, failures, unfulfilled deeds. As we look ahead, we find that God is giving us an opportunity to correct the many failures and wrong and to build upon the good.

This text might be viewed as a general confirmation of the preceding sentence, that the whole course of man’s life is suddenly brought to an end, as soon as God shows himself displeased. But in my opinion Moses rather amplifies what he has said above concerning the rigor of God’s wrath, and his strict examination of every case in which he punishes sin. He asserts that this terror which God brought upon his people was not only for a short time, but that it was extended without intermission even to death. He complains that the Jews had almost wasted away by continual miseries; because God neither remitted nor mitigated his anger. It is therefore not surprising to find him declaring that their years passed away like a tale, when God’s anger rested upon them so unremittingly.

However, we notice that the main idea of the text is the transients of life; it has the brevity of a cry. Some lives have only one word, some several, yet is each an exclamation. Some have the completeness of finished sentences; some fail in the midst; some have only a beginning, rather intimate that there is something to be said than say it. Then is life short, indeed, when man dies, not because he has exhausted a force so much as because he has met with an obstruction. And yet how often is this the case! The days are “cut off;” “the sun goes down while it is yet day; “the flower fadeth.” Then, also, is life short when, though its voice fails not at the commencement of its utterance, it is broken off in the midst, and gives no complete expression to the deep meaning with which it is charged. And yet how often is it as an unfinished cry! How often do men pass away before they have half revealed the significance of their being! Things are long and short in comparison. The sense of duration is not absolute. It is only eternity that is really long–absolutely long. Eternity makes life nothing, and yet everything; sinks it to utter significance, and yet invests it with inconceivable importance.

It is noted, the life of man is rather measured by days than by months or years; and these are but few, which pass away or “decline” as the day does towards the evening; Jeremiah 6:4 or “turn away their face”, as the word may be rendered: they turn their backs upon us, and not the face to us; so that it is a hard thing to get time by the forelock; and these, which is worst of all, pass away in the “wrath” of God. This has a particular reference to the people of Israel in the wilderness, when God had swore in His wrath they should not enter into the land of Canaan, but wander about all their days in the wilderness, and be consumed there; so that their days manifestly passed away under visible marks of the divine displeasure; and this is true of all wicked men, who are by nature children of wrath, and go through the world, and out of it, as such: and even it may be said of man in general; the ailments, diseases, and calamities, that attend the state of infancy and youth; the losses, crosses, and disappointments, vexations and afflictions, which wait upon man in riper years; and the evils and infirmities of old age, do abundantly confirm this truth: none but God’s people can, in any sense, be excepted from it, on whom no wrath comes, being loved with an everlasting love; and yet these, in their own apprehensions, have frequently the wrath of God upon them, and pass many days under a dreadful sense of it.

Therefore, time, which is so short, is the season for conversion, salvation; and without these, when it is passed, we will find ourselves in an eternity for which no preparation has been made. Everlasting life dates from regeneration, not from death; we cannot have the life immortal if we are not born again. Let us not squander the time that God has given us. Let us redeem it, use it for our good and His glory. Because when we recognize that we have only so much time on this earth, that truth will help us think rightly about how to spend our time. This, in turn, will encourage us to grow in wisdom. We will want to judge well how to use the time allotted to us, and this requires godly perspective. It’s not just knowing what we can do, but also what we should do. When we number our days, we will strive to fill each one with value, living every moment for God’s purposes and glory.

Have a great and God filled day

Pastor C

Our Christian Obligation

Category : General

Joshua 24: 15 (KJV)
15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.

“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep, to gain what he cannot lose.” –Jim Elliot.

Joshua knew well that all service that was not free and voluntary could be only deceit and hypocrisy, and that God loves a cheerful giver. He therefore calls upon the people to make their choice, for God himself would not force them; they must serve him with all their heart if they served him at all. As for himself and family, he shows them that their choice was already fixed, for they had taken Jehovah for their portion.

It is an act of choice, of preference, to which you are called; one of the most familiar, every-day acts of the mind. You are called to change masters; to renounce the world as your portion and to choose God as your portion; to submit to His authority and control, and henceforth live, not to your self, but to Him who died for you and rose again. And this act of choice or preference is of the nature of a supreme, governing purpose of the mind–such a purpose as gives direction to the current of feeling and desire in the soul.

The choice, however, is not between religion and no religion. Man is a religious being. it is noted that religion is as necessary to his soul as breathing is to his body. To be religious is a necessity, but the kind of religion adopted is a matter of choice. In selecting religion, care should be taken to understand fully the merits of each. The antiquity and popularity of a system, though they show that such a system ought to be examined, are in themselves no arguments in favor of its truth. Truth is beautiful though hated and hooted by the majority of men. The diamond glitters however mean the setting. Like the diamond and the star, truth is beautiful everywhere and always.

In v.15 we see a two-fold exhortation. Joshua challenged the people to choose who they would serve and to get about it! They were to make a choice. He also set the example and laid down the gauntlet for the rest of the people by stating his clear intention to serve God.
The same choice stands before us this morning! It’s about time people got off the fence and made up their minds whose team they are on. Friend, you cannot have both God and the world! You cannot have Him and all your distractions. Either He is in first place, or you have a different god! The question that comes to my mind is this: “Why would anyone think it evil to serve the Lord?”

I do believe with all my heart that we need some Joshua’s in our day! We need some men and women who will settle it in their hearts that Jesus Christ and His Word are most important and should be practice. We need individuals who are willing to be an example of Christ for others. We have too many who, by their lives, give justification for loose living and slackness in life. We need some who have a backbone of steel and who would rather die that let something come ahead of God in their lives. Daniel – Dan. 1:8-19; The 3 Hebrews – Dan. 3:1-30; Daniel – Dan. 6:1-28; Ruth – Ruth 1:16-17.)

Have a great and God filled day!

Pastor C

Holding Fast the Faithful Word

Category : General

2 Timothy 1: 13 (KJV)
13Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.

We live in a time when faithfulness to God is not deem as important. A time when God’s Word is not preached, promoted or practiced by those who professed to know Him. There is a clarion call for the believer to tenaciously hold to what they know is true concerning God and His word.

It is said, Faith credits the Divine doctrines. Love reduces them all to practice. Faith lays hold on Jesus Christ, and obtains that love by which every precept is cheerfully and effectually obeyed.

The Greek word here rendered is important. The word means a form, sketch, or imperfect delineation – an outline. Grotius says that it here means “an exemplar, but an exemplar fixed in the mind – an idea.” Calvin says that the command is that he should adhere to the doctrine which he had learned, not only in its substance, but in its form signifies the sketch, plan, or outline of a building, picture, etc.; and here refers to the plan of salvation which the apostle had taught Timothy. No man was left to invent a religion for his own use, and after his own mind. God alone knows that with which God can be pleased. If God did not give a revelation of Himself, the inventions of man, in religious things, would be endless error, involving itself in contortions of unlimited confusion. God gives, in His mercy to man, a form of sound words or doctrines; a perfect plan and sketch of the original building; fair and well defined outlines of everything which concerns the present and eternal welfare of man, and his own glory.

Here Paul shows Timothy in what he ought to be most constant, that is, both in the doctrine itself, the essential parts of which are faith and charity, and next in the manner of teaching it. It is a living pattern and shape of which Timothy knew existed in the apostle. Also notice next how it was that the Apostle acquired this knowledge, which enabled him to speak, with so much sure certainty, respecting Christ. One was from the testimony of others, the other from his own experience. As from the testimony of others, the uniform testimony of all time, with regard to the mode of salvation, has been that Christ is the one and the only foundation for the sinner’s hope for eternity.

Let us take noted that in every dispensation, the Patriarchal, the Legal or Levitical, as well as the Gospel the way of salvation has been but one. Prophets and righteous men of old, types and predictions, and ceremonies, all pointed to the Savior as the one hope of the sinner, the one refuge in whom men may be invited to find shelter from God’s wrath on account of sin. Moreover, there was a fuller and firmer ground of confidence than this. Please note that once he was the most active amongst the persecutors of Christianity. But now so rich had been his experience of the sympathy, the love, the grace, the power, the wisdom, of Jesus, that he was able to say, “I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed to Him against that day.” Let this be our commitment and stand as well.

Have a great God filled Day

Pastor C

Truth about Christmas

Category : General

Colossians 1: 21 (KJV)
21 And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled.

The apostle has dwelt at length on the dignity and majesty of Jesus, but without hesitation he speaks here of His incarnate state, for in Him there was a union of extremes, of God and man-of earth and heaven. Indeed, the incarnation, rightly understood, enhances the Redeemer’s greatness. The spiritually sublime is truly seen in His condescension and death.

It is important to note, all men are alienated from God, and by the same token are enemies in their minds to Him, which they show by their wicked works; but this is spoken particularly of the Gentiles. The word which we render to alienate; to give to another, to estrange, expresses the state of the Gentiles. While the Jews were, at least by profession, dedicated to God, the Gentiles were alienated, that is, given up to others; they worshipped not the true God, but had gods many and lords many, to whom they dedicated themselves, their religious service, and their property. Therefore, the Gentiles had alienated themselves from God, and were alienated or rejected by him, because of their wickedness and idolatry.

They had the carnal mind, which is enmity against God. Moreover, we see that the alienation of the mind showed itself by wicked works, or we can say this was expressed in their outward conduct by wicked works. those works were the public evidence of the alienation; Romans 5:10; Ephesians 2:1-2. The mind is taken here for all the soul, heart, affections, passions, etc. However, harmony has been secured between you and God, and you are brought to friendship and love. Such a change has been produced in you as to bring your minds into friendship with that of God. All the change in producing this is on the part of man, for God cannot change, and there is no reason why he should, if he could. In the work of reconciliation man lays aside his hostility to his Maker, and thus becomes his friend; 2 Corinthians 5:18.

Sin doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Evil deeds happen when we have a wrong or bad attitude. Sin is proof that something is astray in our hearts. We can’t simply say, “I don’t know what came over me”. And neither can we excuse the habitual sins of others by saying, “But they really do have a good heart.” Everyone can have a good heart, but as long as one remains in sin, they are demonstrating that a good heart is something they lack. Our own deeds do say something very insightful and honest about us (Ephesians 5:5-6; Titus 1:16 “. but by their deeds they deny Him.” It was even God’s will that the sacrifice of Christ would reconcile former sinners, men and women who had been hostile to God in the past (Romans 5:6-8).

The way and means by which Christ effected this work of reconciliation for them and us, namely, by taking upon Him a true body, subject to fleshly infirmities, though without sin; and in that body suffering death for us, that we might be presented at the last day, perfectly holy unto God. In order to our reconciliation with God, it pleased Christ, the second Person in the ever-glorious Trinity, to assume a body of flesh, that He might be of the same nature with us, and in that body of flesh to die for sin; that the same nature which had sinned, might give satisfaction for sin. And further, to make us completely happy, He has not only taken away the legal enmity on God’s part, but the natural enmity on our part; for he sanctifies those whom he reconciles initially in this life, but perfectly and completely in the next, and where and when they shall be presented holy, unblameable, and unreproveable, to His heavenly Father. This is the truth about Christmas, the reason Christ came which is to reconcile us to God.

Have a Very Merry Christmas

Pastor C

A Beautiful Name

Category : General

St. Matthew 1: 21 (KJV)

21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.

The name Jesus is the same as Savior. It is derived from the verb signifying to save. In Hebrew it is the same as Joshua. In two places in the New Testament it is used where it means Joshua, the leader of the Jews into Canaan, and in our translation the name Joshua should have been retained, Acts 7:45; Hebrews 4:8. Moreover, we see that this was not an unusual name among the Jews, the name appearing both as Jesus and as Joshua. However, the word “Christ” means Messiah; hence, in the confession of faith, the believer affirms that he believes that “Jesus is the Christ, the son of the living God,” as did Peter in Matthew 16:16. In all ordinary cases, parents do not name their children before they are born, seeing that the question of their sex is not determined until after birth; however, an angel of the Lord announced Jesus’ name along with the news of his conception!

So we see that Jesus is to be the child’s name, not indeed as a mere appellation to distinguish Him from other people, as in the case of the Hebrew synonym Joshua, Num.13:17; Zec.3:1, but as an expression of the very essence of the divine personality, through which the salvation of men would be gained. For the angel explains the name: He shall save His people from their sins That, in a sentence, is the end and object of His coming, that alone is His errand and mission: He, and no other. He alone, and He completely, saves. He brings full pardon, free salvation, complete deliverance, not only from the pollution and power, but also from the guilt of sin. To His people He brings this priceless boon, not merely to the members of His nation according to the flesh, to the Jewish people, but to all that are in need of a Savior, Matt.18:11. This is the Gospel-message, not that Jesus makes allowances for sin, but that He has made atonement for it; not that He tolerates sin, but that He destroys it.

We learn and understand from this that this shall be His great business in the world: the great errand on which He is come. He is to make an atonement for, and to destroy sin. Our complete deliverance from all the power, guilt, and pollution of sin, is the privilege of every believer in Christ Jesus. Less than this is not spoken of in the Gospel; and less than this would be unbecoming the Gospel. The perfection of the Gospel system is not that it makes allowances for sin, but that it makes an atonement for it: not that it tolerates sin, but that it destroys it. In Matthew 1:1, He is called Jesus Christ, on which Dr. Lightfoot properly remarks, “That the name of Jesus, so often added to the name of Christ in the New Testament, is not only that Christ might be thereby pointed out as the Savior, but also that Jesus might be pointed out as the true Christ or Messiah, against the unbelief of the Jews.” This observation will be of great use in numberless places of the New Testament. Acts 2:36; 8:35; 1 Cor.16:22; 1 John 2:22; 4:15, etc.

Let us remember that God has given this Name, given it in writing to be read, given it by preaching to be heard, given it Himself that it may never be forgotten, and that it may be above every name, given it among men, that men may read and hear it. Let us learn and repeat it, incorporate it with our prayers and our songs, and that it may become as familiar in our mouths as any household word, as the words mother and father.

Have a Very Merry Christmas

Pastor C

Jesus the Reason for the Season

Category : General

“And when the Lord Jesus has become your peace, remember, there is another thing: good will towards men. Do not try to keep Christmas without good will towards men.” –Charles Spurgeon

Luke 2: 1-18 (KJV)

1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.
2 (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)
3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)
5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.
7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.
17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.
18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

“…And then, just when everything is bearing down on us to such an extent that we can scarcely withstand it, the Christmas message comes to tell us that all our ideas are wrong, and that what we take to be evil and dark is really good and light because it comes from God. Our eyes are at fault, that is all. God is in the manger, wealth in poverty, light in darkness, succor in abandonment. No evil can befall us; whatever men may do to us, they cannot but serve the God who is secretly revealed as love and rules the world and our lives.” –Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Have a Very Merry Christmas

Pastor C

Fear Not

Category : General

St. Luke 2: 10 (KJV)
10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

It is noted that ‘Fear’ has ever been the bane of human existence on earth, ever since the fall from Eden. Man is born with only two fears, that of falling and that of a loud noise; but, to these, his experience quickly adds many more, and his fertile imagination countless others. The calming of mortal fears has frequently engaged God’s concern, as in this instance through his angels.

There is a kind of fear towards God from which we must not wish to be free. There is that lawful, necessary, admirable, excellent fear which is always due from the creature to the Creator, from the subject to the king, and from the child toward the parent. To have a holy awe of our most holy, just, righteous, and tender parent is a privilege, not a bondage. Godly fear is not the “fear which hath torment;” perfect love doth not cast out, but dwells with it in joyful harmony. The fear which is to be avoided is slaving fear–that trembling which keeps us at a distance from God, which makes us think of Him as a Spirit with whom we can have no communion, as a Being who has no care for us except to punish us, and for whom consequently we have no care except to escape if possible from His terrible presence.

The design of this exhortation is to alleviate their fear. For, though it is profitable for the minds of men to be struck with awe, that they may learn to “give unto the Lord the glory due unto his name,” (Psalms 29:2😉 yet they have need, at the same time, of consolation, that they may not be altogether overwhelmed. For the majesty of God could not but swallow up the whole world, if there were not some mildness to mitigate the terror which it brings. And so, the reprobate fall down lifeless at the sight of God, because he appears to them in no other character than that of a judge. But to revive the minds of the shepherds, the angel declares that he was sent to them for a different purpose, to announce to them the mercy of God. When men hear this single word, that God is reconciled to them, it not only raises up those who are fallen down, but restores those who were ruined, and recalls them from death to life.

The fear these shepherds experienced is the fear of a sinner struck by the glory of God’s holiness. It’s the fear of unworthiness before God. This fear rises in the heart when a person is confronted with his own sins, is condemned by God’s Law, and threatened with God’s wrath and punishment. Yet here no word of Law is even needed. Simply the reflecting glow of God’s holiness from the angel so recently in the Divine presence conveys this message and ushers in complete terror.

Let us remember that God’s presence is with us all the time, not just at Christmas, although there are so many times we cannot see it. The presence of God was made available to us when Jesus was born. “Fear not, for unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.”

So, this Christmas, are you aware of God’s purpose? Do you know God’s promise, as it was fulfilled through His Son? Is God present in your life? The word of God to you today is “Fear not! Jesus has been born! God has entered the world—and you don’t have to be afraid, anymore. This is the message God emphasized to those present at the birth of His Son, Jesus: “Fear not

Have a great and God filled day!

Pastor C

A Message of Joy

Category : General

St. Luke 2: 10 (KJV)
10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

In our text we have before us the sermon of the first evangelist under the gospel dispensation. The preacher was an angel, and it was meet it should be so, for the grandest and last of all Evangelist will be proclaimed by an angel when he shall sound the trumpet of the resurrection, and the children of the regeneration shall rise into the fullness of their joy. The key-note of this angelic gospel is joy–“I bring unto you good tidings of great joy.” Nature fears in the presence of God–the shepherds were sore afraid. The law itself served to deepen this natural feeling of dismay; seeing men were sinful, and the law came into the world to reveal sin, its tendency was to make men fear and tremble under any and every Divine revelation. But the first word of the gospel ended all this, for the angelic evangelist said, “Fear not, behold I bring you good tidings.”

Here is the proclamation of the angel “I am not come to declare the judgments of the Lord, but his merciful loving-kindness, the subject being a matter of great joy.” He then declares his message. Unto you – to the Jews first, and then to the human race. Paul says, He took not upon him the nature of angels, but the seed of Abraham, i.e. the nature of Abraham and his posterity, the human nature. Therefore, the good news is to you, – and not to yourselves exclusively, for it is to all people, to all the inhabitants of this land, and to the inhabitants of the whole earth.

This spiritual gladness and festivity is the principal assistance to vanquish Satan, and all desperate doubts with which he would perplex our conscience: it is a royal joy which comforts us that we shall be heirs of a glorious kingdom; it is a sanctified joy which gives us promise that we shall not only be kings but priests forever, to offer up the sweet odors of our prayers to God; it is a superlative joy which cries down all other petty delights, and makes them appear as nothing; it is endless joy of durance and lasting for ever and ever; for my text says it is “joy that shall be unto you.”

The whole thought and idea of all that is told us about Christmas Day suggests the consoling, the cheering thought, that however gloomy our lot, however distressed our portion, God, the Almighty God, has not forsaken us. There is the truth which the heathen, and we must also add, which Christians have often been very slow to acknowledge, that the Divine is only another word for the perfectly good, that God is goodness, and that goodness is God. The message of Christmas is one of Joy, joy in Jesus and not in worldly pursuit or materialism.

Have a great and God filled day!

Pastor C

Better to Trust God than Man

Category : General

Proverbs 25: 14 (KJV)

14 Whoso boasteth himself of a false gift is like clouds and wind without rain.

“A treacherous man will not only fail you in distress, but will annoy you like a broken tooth or a sprained foot.” — Stuart.

This is sometimes a great evil. To trust in man and disregard God, or to repose in man the confidence that rightly belongs to God alone, is sinful and ruinous. But in some respects, it is natural and right to trust our fellow-men. We are social beings. There can be no friendship without trust.

Here we find that great stress is to be laid on the uselessness of the “broken tooth” and the “foot out of joint,” or tottering, rather than on the pain connected with them. The test of man as an object of trust. The “time of trouble” tests the faithfulness of those in whom we confide. Prosperity brings friends; adversity tests them. It is also noted that there are three kinds of trouble that tests man as an object of trust–1. Trouble in our circumstances, or loss and poverty. 2. Trouble in our reputation, or misrepresentation and slander. 3. Trouble in our character, or sin. For a truly Christian man may fall into grievous sin.

However, we see that the failure of man as an object of trust is he puts himself first. The one who trusts in his riches, or in his righteousness, or in his own heart, all which are vain and deceitful and are very dangerous.The unfaithful man in time of trial fails those who trust him. The failure of the unfaithful man in time of trial is painful to those who trust him. The attempt to use the broken tooth or dislocated joint causes suffering. So too we see that some of the keenest anguish of human souls is caused by the failure of those in whom they trusted.

The scripture makes it clear that it is not good to put confidence in any man, not in princes, nor in the best of men; much less in an unfaithful, prevaricating, and treacherous man; and especially in a time of distress and trouble, depending on his help and assistance, which is leaning on a broken reed, and trusting to a broken staff.

Let us learn and understand that the trust of man should not overshadow our trust in God. We must put God first, honor Him in all that we say and do. Above everyone and everything, we must trust in Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.

Have a great and God filled day!

Pastor C

Hope for the Holidays

Category : General

Romans 15: 4 (KJV)
4 For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.

It has been observed that the connection between the different parts of the text is this: First, the apostle lays down a Christian’s duty (Romans 15:1-2). After that he brings forward, as the sanction of that duty, the spirit of the life of Christ (Romans 15:3). Next, he adds an illustration of that principle by a quotation from Psalms 69:1-36. Lastly, he explains and defends that application (verse 4). So, we have the principle upon which the apostles used the Old Testament, and we are enabled to understand their view of inspiration. This is the deepest question of our day. In the text we find two principles.
This passage quoted was evidently spoken by David of himself. Nevertheless, Paul applies it to Christ. Moreover, he uses it as belonging to all Christians (verse 4). “No prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation.” Had the Psalm applied only to David, then it would have been of private interpretation; instead of which, it belongs to humanity. As we look, the prophecy of the destruction of Jerusalem. That seemed limited to Jerusalem; but had it ended there, then we would have had a prophecy of private–i.e., peculiar, limited–interpretation: whereas our Redeemer’s principle was this: that this doom pronounced on Jerusalem was but a specimen of God’s judgments. The judgment coming of the Son of Man takes place wherever there is evil grown ripe, whenever corruption is complete.

This is a “general” observation which struck the mind of the apostle, from the particular case which he had just specified. He had just made use of a striking passage in the Psalms to his purpose. The thought seems suddenly to have occurred to him that “all” the Old Testament was admirably adapted to express Christian duties and doctrine, and he therefore turned aside from his direct argument to express this sentiment. It should be read as a parenthesis.

We are reminded that it is through patience, and by the exhortation of the Scriptures, we might obtain hope. But it is through the patience exhibited in example in the Scriptures that we are to have hope. And though the original word signifies exhortation as well as comfort, yet here the latter is to be preferred. In the next verse, with reference to this declaration, God is called the God of patience. Now God is the God of consolation, that is, the God who is the author of consolation to His people. But to call God the God of exhortation, would be an uncouth expression.

We should read the Scriptures with a view not to gratify our curiosity, but to increase and nourish our hope of future glory. This passage teaches that we should encourage ourselves by the example of those who, amidst similar temptations, have overcome. For this purpose, the conduct of those who obtained a good report through faith is set before us, that we may not be slothful, but followers of them who, through faith and patience, inherit the promises. It is in this that we have “hope for the holidays.”

Have a great and God filled day!

Pastor C