He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. 1 John 2:4, 5.
The sanctification now gaining prominence in the religious world carries with it a spirit of self-exaltation and a disregard for the law of God that mark it as foreign to the religion of the Bible. Its advocates teach that sanctification is an instantaneous work, by which, through faith alone, they attain to perfect holiness. “Only believe,” say they, “and the blessing is yours.” No further effort on the part of the receiver is supposed to be required. At the same time they deny the authority of the law of God, urging that they are released from obligation to keep the commandments. But is it possible for men to be holy, in accord with the will and character of God, without coming into harmony with the principles which are an expression of His nature and will . . . ?
The desire for an easy religion that requires no striving, no self-denial, no divorce from the follies of the world, has made the doctrine of faith, and faith only, a popular doctrine; but what saith the word of God? Says the apostle James: “What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? . . . Wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? . . .”
The testimony of the word of God is against this ensnaring doctrine of faith without works. It is not faith that claims the favor of Heaven without complying with the conditions upon which mercy is to be granted, it is presumption; for genuine faith has its foundation in the promises and provisions of the Scriptures.
Let none deceive themselves with the belief that they can become holy while willfully violating one of God’s requirements. The commission of a known sin silences the witnessing voice of the Spirit and separates the soul from God. . . . “He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected” (1 John 2:4, 5).
Maranatha p. 232
—–Please pray for my cousin Dean. He has had many strokes and is not doing well at all. Also please pray that Ronnie Jay will have God’s guidance in the choice of a house. Rose
—–update—Please pray for Connie and family as her mother has died.
My grandmother rarely went anywhere except to church or an occasional trip into downtown Kalamazoo. My grandfather even did the grocery shopping on his way home from work. Whenever she needed any item that my grandfather had forgotten, she would send my mother (and later, me) to walk the two blocks to where there was a couple of small grocery stores and a pharmacy.
One day, when my mother was a teenager, my grandmother sent her to the mailbox to mail a letter. The mailbox was on the corner where Van Avery’s drug store and Collison’s Market were. My mother decided to take her little changepurse and buy herself some little treat as a reward for running this errand. As she walked along, she began to daydream. Before long she had arrived at her destination and absentmindedly mailed the letter—and—her purse!
Just as she closed the mail chute, she realized what she had done. She went inside the drugstore and asked Mrs. Van Avery what she should do. My mother was very distraught, and the storekeeper could do little but comfort her. Finally, my tearful mother went home.
My grandmother was not pleased when she heard what had happened, but she had an idea. “Geneva,” she said, “You are just going to have to go back to the mailbox and wait for the mailman.” When it was near the pickup time, my mother stood beside that mailbox. She got very tired of standing there, but she wanted her purse. As she waited, she was tempted to go into the store and look around, but she knew that if she did that, she might miss the mailman. Then she would never get her purse.
After what seemed like an eternity, the mailman arrived! Blushing with humiliation, my mother told him what had happened and asked him to find her changepurse amidst all the letters that were in the box. He couldn’t help smiling at this teenage girl standing before him. He told her not to be embarrassed, because he often had to retrieve things a lot stranger than a changepurse out of mailboxes.
Just as my mother anxiously awaited coming of the mailman, so we are to wait for Jesus’ soon return. Just as she had to resist the temptation to go into the store and look at all the pretty figurines that Mrs. Van Avery had, or go to the soda fountain and talk to the neighbor boy who worked there; so we must not allow the things of this world or anyone or any thing to take our eyes off from ultimate goal—Jesus’ soon coming! “Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him.” Rev 1:7 “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” 1 Thess 4:16,17
“For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be….And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors….Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.” Matt 24:27,31-33,44-47
Our Dear Saviour made a thought provoking statement, “Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?” Luke 18:8 We wonder, “How can that be?” He explains, “The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.” Matt 13:24-30
Let us determine that He will find us faithful to be faithful wheat, for He promises, “be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.” Rev 2:10 Let us endure unto the end for He has said, “he that endureth to the end shall be saved.” Matt 10:22 “Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning: Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.” Mark 13:35-37