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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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God’s Distinguishing Love

John BunyanJohn Bunyan:

Christian, let God’s distinguishing love to you be a motive to you to fear Him greatly. He has put His fear in your heart, and may not have given that blessing to your neighbor, perhaps not to your husband, your wife, your child, or your parent. Oh, what an obligation should this thought lay upon your heart to greatly fear the Lord! Remember also that this fear of the Lord is His treasure, a choice jewel, given only to favorites, and to those who are greatly beloved.

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Conversion

Bartholomaeus ZiegenbalgBartholomaeus Ziegenbalg (Missionary to India, 1683-1719):

Conversion does not mean a change of outward appearance; rather it requires a change of mind and results in a transformed life.”

Christian Zeal

Bishop J. C. Ryle

The world does not recognize the debt it owes to Christian zeal! Zeal may make mistakes and need directing. Zeal may need guiding and advising. Zeal may hurt the feelings of narrow-minded and sleepy Christians. It may offend the prejudices of those who hate everything new, and detest all change. True Christian zeal, however, will be justified by its fruits. There is little danger of there being too much zeal for the glory of God. Bishop J. C. Ryle writes:

“It is always good to be zealous in a good cause.” (Galatians 4:18)

Nothing is more useful to the professors of Christianity than to see a real live Christian—a thoroughly zealous man of God. They may rail at him. They may carp at him. They may pick holes in his conduct. They may look bewildered upon him. They may not understand him—but insensibly a zealous man does them good. He opens their eyes. He makes them feel their own sleepiness. He makes their own great darkness visible. He obliges them to see their own barrenness. He compels them to think, whether they like it or not—”What are we doing? Are we no better than mere cumberers of the ground?” It may be sadly true that “one sinner destroys much good!” but it is also a blessed truth that one zealous Christian can do much good. Yes! one single zealous man in a town—one zealous man in a congregation—one zealous man in a Society—one zealous man in a family, may be a great, a most extensive blessing. How many machines of usefulness such a man sets a going! How much Christian activity he often calls into being which would otherwise have slept! How many fountains he opens which would otherwise have been sealed! Verily there is a deep mine of truth in those words of the Apostle Paul to the Corinthians, “Your zeal has provoked very many …” (2 Cor. 9:2) (“Be Zealous”)

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