October 3

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.   1 John 3:1

 

Our present enjoyments should be a window for the soul to see the goodness of God.  Faith can see divine goodness and bounty beaming through every mercy, but to rest in present mercies is to make them our idols.  Whatever you love, let it also be your fear.  Fear will bridle it lest it steals your heart from God.  If what you love is not also your fear, it will be your loss and sorrow.  If Samson had feared his Delilah as much as he loved her, he would have saved both his locks and his life.  You will find whatever you over-love to be a cross or a curse.  Live above the pleasures of sense; we have a nobler delight.  We have God to delight in and Christ to comfort us.  What a poor thing it is to satisfy your soul with the delights of brutes.  They have no peace with God, no joy in the Holy Spirit, no peace of conscience, and no hope of glory.  Is not the greatest ground of joy imaginable to have a name written in heaven?  This is a truer cause of rejoicing than anything this world can afford.  Riches and honours are no proofs of God’s love.  A man may have life, but be dead in sin; he may be rich, yet be wretched; he may have children, and yet be under the wrath of God.  The names of the greatest part of the world are written in the dust.  They have forsaken the Lord, the fountain of living waters.  A name in heaven is only the portion of a few, and a special privilege and cause of rejoicing indeed.  We are his adopted children.  What greater ground of joy imaginable is there than this?  With God as our portion, all he is and all he has is our inheritance.  We have title to all our Father’s riches and honours.  God is our Father forever.  How we should rejoice in this!  To be a son or daughter of God, our everlasting Father, is the highest title in the world.

 

Through the Year with William Still

 

Sinclair Ferguson has publicly stated that no one has had a greater spiritual impact on his life than William Still! William Still was the minister of Gilcomston South Church, Aberdeen, from 1945 to 1997. While his name may not feature in the official annals of the Church of Scotland, it is doubtful whether any other individual in his Church during the latter half of the twentieth century had such a profound or widespread influence. For over fifty years Mr. Still pioneered a single-minded commitment to expository preaching and congregational prayer which made Gilcomston a beacon of Reformed and evangelical Christianity in Scotland.

A man whose very life breathed the grace and love of God, no one who ever met him, received his counsel, or sat under his ministry, could have escaped the sheer Christlikeness of Mr. Still’s life. In the early days of his ministry he wrote: “There is no part of me, or of my life, that I will withhold from the work that God has called me to.”

It was one of the marks of his evident commitment to the service of Christ that he devoted himself to the pastoral care of his people, providing them with daily Bible reading notes that would feed their souls and prepare them for works of service. The “Notes”, which appeared in the monthly “Congregational Record,” soon became highly sought after across Scotland, the United Kingdom, and even to the far-flung corners of the world, increasing in many a love for and commitment to the Word of God.

Drawn from every book in the Bible, this selection, edited and arranged by David C. Searle, will take the reader through the year with William Still. These pages will explain what it means to live under the authority of Scripture, to exalt the glorious Person of Christ, and to rejoice in the wonder of the gospel.

 

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