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  • Samuel at Gilgal

    This year I will be sharing brief excerpts from the articles, sermons, and books I am currently reading. My posts will not follow a regular schedule but will be published as I find well-written thoughts that should be of interest to maturing Christian readers. Whenever possible, I encourage you to go to the source and read the complete work of the author.

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A Right Heart Feels Conflict

According to J. C. Ryle:

A right heart is a heart that feels CONFLICT within it (Gal. 5:17). It finds within itself two opposing principles contending for the mastery – the flesh lusting against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh. It knows by experience what Paul means when he says, “I see a law in my members warring against the law of my mind” (Rom. 7:23). The wrong heart knows nothing of this strife. The strong man armed keeps the wrong heart as their palace, and their goods are at peace (Luke 11:21). But when the rightful King takes possession of the heart, a struggle begins which never ends until death. The right heart may be known by its warfare, quite as much as by its peace.

A Holy Joy

From the works of David Martyn Lloyd-Jones:

“The Christian is not superficial in any sense, but is fundamentally serious and fundamentally happy. You see, the joy of the Christian is a holy joy, the happiness of the Christian is a serious happiness. … it is a solemn joy, it is a holy joy, it is a serious happiness; so that, though he is grave and sober-minded and serious, he is never cold and prohibitive.” (Studies in the Sermon on the Mount)

God Governs

English: Source: http://homepage.mac.com/shane...

God is in every experience, working according to his good pleasure and purpose from the beginning to the fullness of time. According to A. A. Hodge:

Providence, as made known to us in Scripture, history and our religious experience, includes two distinct exercises of the divine energy: (1st) preservation, and (2d) government.

Preservation is the continuous exercise of the divine omnipotence through successive duration upholding all creatures in being and in power. . . . All atoms of matter and all created spirits live and move and have all their being and the unfailing spring of all their energies in him only. If he should withdraw his supporting power, the whole dependent universe would lapse into non-being immediately.

Government includes God’s control of all the activities of all his creatures of every kind, and his direction of them toward the fulfilling of his one eternal plan. That God has one universal plan which he executes with undeviating purpose in all his works of creation and of providence is made very certain, first, from the fact that he is an infinite Intelligence acting from eternity before all worlds, and absolutely unconditioned by any facts or powers external to himself.

Secondly, from all that the Scriptures teach us as to his sovereignty, eternal foreknowledge, and as to making his own glory the single end of all things. And thirdly, the same fact is obviously exhibited in the unexceptional experience of all generations of men, and the revelations of modern science, exhibiting the absolutely unbroken continuity of thought and purpose and of divine superintendence and control in the whole universe, in all its parts and during all its successive ages. . . .

God effectually governs all his creatures and all their actions by a method to us inscrutable, but certainly consistent with his own perfections and with their properties and laws. This government is revealed in the Scriptures and in our experience to be universal, certainly efficient, holy, benevolent and wise. (“The Scriptural Doctrine of Divine Providence”)

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