How To Treat Others

In everything, do to others what you would have them do to you.” Matthew 7:12

In the verse above, Jesus gives us a general rule on how to treat people. We’re not to treat people the way they treat us, we’re to treat people the way we would like them to treat us. This is how the Christian is to live.

This is a golden rule indeed! It doesn’t simply forbid petty malice, revenge, cheating and deceit. It does much more. It prevents the need to lay down endless little rules for our conduct in specific cases.

It sweeps away the whole debatable ground with one mighty principle. It shows us a balance and measure, by which everyone may see at once how they should act.

Is there something we wouldn’t like our neighbor to do to us? Then let us always remember that this is the thing we ought not to do to him. Is there a thing we would like our neighbor to do to us? Then this is the very thing we ought to do to him.

– J. C. Ryle

Joy In All Circumstances

Joy Comes From Being In Christ

It’s natural for people to be happy when things go well. But the Christian’s joy doesn’t come from earthly circumstances, it comes from being “in Christ” (Rom 15:17).

Christians think more of their Lord than their difficulties; more of their spiritual riches in Christ than their poverty on earth; more of the glorious future when their Lord should come again than of their unhappy past. (Rom 8:38-39)

God’s Purpose Is Being Worked Out

Christianity turns a person’s thoughts away from themselves and onto the great God who has saved them in Christ our Savior.

When a person comes to see that God in Christ has saved him, everything changes. He now realizes that God’s purpose is being worked out. He sees evidence of this in his own life and in the lives of those around him.

This leads the Christian to understand that a loving purpose is being worked out even during hard times (Rom 8:28). When he comes to see God’s hand in all things he learns to give thanks for all things and have joy in all circumstances.

– Leon Morris

God Of The Broken-Hearted

“The Lord is near the broken-hearted.” – Psalm 34:18

The world cares very little for broken hearts, but the God of the Bible is the God of the broken-hearted.

People often break the heart’s of other by their cruelty, their falseness, their injustice and their coldness. But God cares. Broken-heartedness draws Him down from heaven.

Doctors don’t treat the healthy but the sick. It’s the same with God. It’s not to the whole and the well, but to the broken and the wounded, that He comes with sweetest tenderness. Jesus said of His mission: “He has sent Me to bind up the broken-hearted.” (Isaiah 61:1)

God repairs and restores the hurt and ruined life. He takes the bruised reed and, by His gentle skill, makes it whole again until it grows into fairest beauty.

The love, pity, and grace of God ministers sweet blessings of comfort and healing to restore the broken and wounded hearts of His people. The God of the Bible is the God of those brought low, whom He lifts up into His strength.

God is the God of those who fail — not that He loves those who stumble and fall better than those who walk without stumbling — but He helps them more. The weak believers get more of His grace than those who are strong believers.

There is a special divine promise which says, “My power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Cor 12:9) When we are aware of our own insufficiency, then we are ready to receive His divine sufficiency. And so our very weakness is an element of strength. Our weakness is an empty cup which God fills with His own strength.

You may think that your weakness disqualifies you for noble, strong, beautiful living, or for sweet, gentle, helpful serving. But really it’s something which, if you give it to Christ, He can transform into a blessing, a source of His power.

– J. R. Miller

The Weekly Devotional: God’s Grace Is Greater Than Our Sin

Verses of the Week:

1. “What the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering…” (Rom 8:3)

2. “For our sake he made him [Jesus] to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (2 Cor 5:21)

3. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 Jhn 1:9)

Quote of the Week:

“The Law tells me how crooked I am. Grace comes along and straightens me out.” (Dwight Moody)

Prayer of the Week:

“Father, I have no merit, let the merit of Jesus stand for me. I am undeserving, but I look to Your tender mercy. I am full of infirmities, wants and sin; You are full of grace.

Help me to put down sin and to humble pride. Save me from the love of the world and the pride of life and let Christ’s nature be seen in me day by day. Amen” (Puritan Prayer)

Dealing With Failure

“Rise, let us be going…” – Matthew 26:46

The disciples went to sleep when they should have kept awake, and when they realized what they had done it produced despair in them.

When we feel something is beyond repair it can cause us to despair, and we say, “It’s all over now, there’s no use trying any more.” If we think that this kind of despair is rare, we’re mistaken, it’s a very common human experience.

Whenever we realize that we’ve missed out on a magnificent opportunity Jesus Christ comes and says, “That opportunity is lost forever, you cannot alter it, but arise and go to the next thing.” Let the past sleep, but let it sleep on the bosom of Christ, and go out into the future with Him.

There are experiences like this in each of our lives. We find ourselves in despair and we cannot lift ourselves out of it. The disciples in this instance had done a downright unforgivable thing — they had gone to sleep instead of watching with Jesus, but He said to them “Arise and do the next thing.”

If we’re Christians, what is the next thing? It’s to trust Him absolutely and to pray on the ground of His Redemption. Never let the sense of failure keep you from moving forward with Christ.

– Oswald Chambers

The Death and Life of Jesus

“He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities. The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.
– Isaiah 53:5

Pay attention, all families of the nations, and observe! An extraordinary murder has taken place in the center of Jerusalem, in the city devoted to God’s law, in the city of the Hebrews, in the city of the prophets, in the city thought of as just. And who has been murdered? And who is the murderer? I am ashamed to give the answer, but give it I must. For if this murder had taken place at night, or if he had been slain in a desert place, it would be well to keep silent; but it was in the middle of the main street, even in the center of the city, while all were looking on, that the unjust murder of this just person took place.

And thus he was lifted up upon the tree, and an inscription was affixed identifying the one who had been murdered. Who was he? It is painful to tell, but it is more dreadful not to tell. Therefore, hear and tremble because of him for whom the earth trembled.

The one who hung the earth in space, is himself hanged; the one who fixed the heavens in place, is himself impaled; the one who firmly fixed all things, is himself firmly fixed to the tree. The Lord is insulted, God has been murdered, the King of Israel has been destroyed by the right hand of Israel.

O frightful murder! O unheard of injustice! The Lord is disfigured and he is not deemed worthy of a cloak for his naked body, so that he might not be seen exposed. For this reason the stars turned and fled, and the day grew quite dark, in order to hide the naked person hanging on the tree, darkening not the body of the Lord, but the eyes of men.

Yes, even though the people did not tremble, the earth trembled instead; although the people were not afraid, the heavens grew frightened; although the people did not tear their garments, the angels tore theirs; although the people did not lament, the Lord thundered from heaven, and the most high uttered his voice.

But the Lord arose from the dead and mounted up to the heights of heaven. When the Lord had clothed himself with humanity, and had suffered for the sake of the sufferer, and had been bound for the sake of the imprisoned, and had been judged for the sake of the condemned, and buried for the sake of the one who was buried,

He rose up from the dead, and cried aloud with this voice, “Who is he who contends with me? Let him stand in opposition to me. I set the condemned man free; I gave the dead man life; I raised up the one who had been entombed.”

“Who is my opponent? I,” he says, “am the Christ. I am the one who destroyed death, and triumphed over the enemy, and trampled Hades under foot, and bound the strong one, and carried off man to the heights of heaven, I,” he says, “am the Christ.”

“Therefore, come, all families of men, you who have been befouled with sins, and receive forgiveness for your sins. I am your forgiveness, I am the passover of your salvation, I am the lamb which was sacrificed for you, I am your ransom, I am your light, I am your saviour, I am your resurrection, I am your king, I am leading you up to the heights of heaven, I will show you the eternal Father, I will raise you up by my right hand.”

This is the one who made the heavens and the earth, and who in the beginning created man, who was proclaimed through the law and prophets, who became human via the virgin, who was hanged upon a tree, who was buried in the earth, who was resurrected from the dead, and who ascended to the heights of heaven, who sits at the right hand of the Father, who has authority to judge and to save everything, through whom the Father created everything from the beginning of the world to the end of the age.

This is the alpha and the omega. This is the beginning and the end–an indescribable beginning and an incomprehensible end. This is the Christ. This is the king. This is Jesus. This is the general. This is the Lord. This is the one who rose up from the dead. This is the one who sits at the right hand of the Father. He bears the Father and is borne by the Father, to whom be the glory and the power forever. Amen.

– Melito of Sardis

Finding Rest In Jesus

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28)

Those of us who are saved find rest in Jesus. Those who are not saved will receive rest if they come to Him, for He promises to give it. Let us gladly accept what He gladly gives.

You’re not to buy it, nor borrow it, but to receive it as a gift. You labor under the weight of ambition, covetousness, lust, or anxiety – Jesus will set you free from this iron bondage and give you rest.

You’re burdened with sin, fear, worry, remorse, fear of death – but if you come to Him He will unload you. He carried the crushing mass of our sin so that we no longer have to carry it.

Jesus gives rest. Will you believe it? Will you put it to the test? Will you do so at once? Come to Jesus by quitting every other hope, by thinking of Him, believing God’s testimony about Him, and trusting everything with Him.

If you come to Him the rest He gives you will be deep, safe, holy, and everlasting. He gives a rest which develops into heaven, and He gives it this day to all who come to Him.

– Charles Spurgeon

Be Kind To Everyone

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. (Ephesians 4:32)

There’s nothing that this sorrowing, sinning world needs more than kindness. Yet, there are many Christians who seem to never learn how to be kind.

We need to pray for the grace of kindness, so that we may walk softly among people, never hurting another life by harsh words or ungentle acts.

When we’re kind, we have something of the beauty of Christ in our life. As we grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus, the light of divine love will shine out from our dull nature, and transform it.

“Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” (Col 3:12)

This will make us more sweet-tempered and gentle-spirited. It will make us honest in our dealings with our fellow men. It will make us godly people to live with at home. It will make us good neighbors and faithful friends. A life lived this way will leave countless blessings in this world.

Such a life of quiet, simple, humble, Christlike goodness will influence other lives, making them better, happier, holier, sweeter. A ministry of simple kindness is within the reach of every Christian. It requires no brilliant gifts, and no great wealth. It is a ministry which anyone may fulfill.

“The unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit is of great worth in God’s sight” (1 Pet 3:4)

In these days of worldliness, the church needs just such simple goodness. It has eloquence in its pulpits, and activity in its pews, but it needs more godly people filled with the gentleness of Christ, repeating the life of Christ wherever they go.

– J. R. Miller

Let Us Give Thanks

“Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.” – Psalm 136:1

Let us bless God for the eyes with which we behold the sun, for the health and strength to walk abroad in the sunlight; let us praise Him for the mercies which are new every morning, for the bread we eat, for the clothes we wear, for houses which give us shelter.

Let us bless Him that we are not deprived of our reason, or stretched upon the bed of suffering; let us praise Him that we are not cast out among the hopeless, or confined among the guilty; let us thank Him for liberty, for friends, for family and comforts; let us praise Him for everything which we receive from His hand, for we deserve little, and yet are most blessed.

“His mercy endures forever.” Every morning’s light proclaims it, the beams of every moon declare it; every breath of air, every heaving of the lungs, every beating of the pulse, are fresh witnesses that “his mercy endures forever.”

– C.H. Spurgeon

The Jesus You’re Missing Out On

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. (Eph 1:3)

If your faith ends at the cross it misses the full blessings of Jesus Christ. Our faith in Jesus should effect every part of our lives!

You’re missing a Savior who, not only went to the cross two thousand years ago to redeem you, but one who also is alive to walk by your side in loving companionship.

You’re missing a Savior who can hear your prayers, who you can repent to when you’ve sinned, and who you can call to for help when the battle is going against you.

You need a Savior who is interested in all the affairs of your common life, and who can assist you in every time of need.

The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. (Ps 34:18, Ps 147:3)

A dying Jesus alone will not satisfy our heart. We must have the living Jesus and that is the Jesus the gospel brings to us: one who was dead and is now alive for ever and ever!

You’re missing a Savior who can be a real friend — loving you, keeping close beside you, able to sympathize with your weaknesses.

We do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin.

Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Heb 4:15-16)

“My soul thirsts for God, for the living God!” cried the psalmist, and cries every redeemed soul. It’s only as we realize the truth of a living Christ that our hearts are satisfied.

We crave love, a hand to touch ours, a heart whose beatings we can feel, a personal friendship that will come into our life with its sympathy, its inspiration, its companionship, its shelter, its life, its comfort. All this, the living Jesus is to us.

– J. R. Miller