For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16.
Why are not all who claim to love God seeking to enlighten their neighbors and their associates, that they may not longer neglect this great salvation? Christ gave Himself to a shameful, agonizing death, showing His great travail of soul to save the perishing. Oh, Christ is able, Christ is willing, Christ is longing, to save all who will come unto Him!
Talk to souls in peril and get them to behold Jesus upon the cross, dying to make it possible for Him to pardon. Talk to the sinner with your own heart overflowing with the tender, pitying love of Christ. Let there be deep earnestness; but not a harsh, loud note should be heard from the one who is trying to win the soul to look and live.
First have your own soul consecrated to God. As you look upon our Intercessor in heaven, let your heart be broken. Then, softened and subdued, you can address repenting sinners as one who realizes the power of redeeming love. Pray with these souls, by faith bringing them to the foot of the cross; carry their minds up with your mind, and fix the eye of faith where you look, upon Jesus the Sin Bearer. Get them to look away from their poor, sinful selves to the Saviour, and the victory is won. They behold for themselves the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world. They see the Way, the Truth, the Life. The Sun of Righteousness sheds its bright beams into the heart. The strong tide of redeeming love pours into the parched and thirsty soul, and the sinner is saved to Jesus Christ.
Christ crucified–talk it, pray it, sing it, and it will break and win hearts. This is the power and wisdom of God to gather souls for Christ. Formal, set phrases, the presentation of merely argumentative subjects, is productive of little good. The melting love of God in the hearts of the workers will be recognized by those for whom they labor. Souls are thirsting for the waters of life. Do not be empty cisterns. If you reveal the love of Christ to them, you may lead the hungering, thirsting ones to Jesus, and He will give them the bread of life and the water of salvation.
Maranatha p. 105
—–D has a job interview today. Please pray. L
—– My son Ivan has just today,(10/23/14), been diagnosed with a HUGE 6 3/8 in. by 5 1/2 in. by 5 1/2 in. cancerous tumor on his pleura. as well as a 2 by nearly 2 inch aneurism in the ascending thoracic aorta. He is scheduled for surgery to remove the tumor on this coming Mon. around noon. His diaphragm maybe involved & may require partial or complete removal & either partial reconstruction or replacement & he will need to learn to breathe using auxiliary means. He is being anointed tomorrow afternoon. Please pray for healing if it will bring glory to God, but most of all for grace & peace as we accept God’s will in this unexpected challenge. Please keep Sherri & I in your prayers, as well. Thank you all. It means so much to know that you are standing by us as we wait on the Lord for His will to be revealed. “Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.” Psalm 27:14 He would really appreciate hearing a word of encouragement from you. Jeannie [If you would like to encourage him, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org and it will be forwarded.]
When we lived in Washington state, our nearest neighbors to the north of us (about one-fourth mile down the road) were two families who were members of our church. The one family had children about the age of our two youngest, so that made it really nice. The other family was Mr. and Mrs. Lowry, an elderly man and his wife who, sadly, had Alzheimers.
One day, Mr. Lowry saw us walking by his place and asked us if we would like to have space in his large garden. Of course, we said that we would. Mr. Lowry had even roto-tilled our half as well as his. We hurried to the store and bought the seeds that we would need. Then we planted it anticipating an abundant crop.
After the little plants appeared, we began working to keep our garden free of weeds. At least we tried to keep the garden weed free. We soon learned that Mr. Lowry had one big problem which had now become ours. Morning glories! Up until this time, I had always thought those big purple flowers of the cultivated kind were beautiful; and before they appeared in our garden, I even thought the little white blooms of the wild kind were pretty. My opinion soon changed.
If we wanted to rid our garden of the offensive blooms, Mr. Lowry explained, we had to pull up not only the visible part of the plant, but also the vine that ran underneath the soil. This was no easy task! We pulled and pulled and worked and worked to rid that garden of those pesky morning glories. Often we would think we had them completely gone, only to find the next day more leaves appearing above the soil. All summer we battled those tough plants. In fact, in all the years that Mr. Lowry let us use that space, we never succeeded in conquering them. We had an acceptable harvest, but not like it would have been had we been able to rid the soil of those impossible weeds.
As we worked that garden, a parable of Jesus made more sense as we had to be careful not to uproot the good plants. “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
Sometimes church members look about them with a critical eye at those they consider “weeds” in the church. What trouble it causes when they begin to work hard to uproot these “weeds.” Jesus reminds us, “why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but perceivest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to pull out the mote that is in thy brother’s eye.” Luke 6:41, 42
How careful we must be, then, to “judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.” John 7:24 Samuel learned this lesson. When God told him that He had chosen one of the sons of Jesse to be the next king, he went to Bethlehem to meet them. “And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the LORD’S anointed is before him. But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.” 1 Sam 16:6, 7 The One Who reads the thoughts and intents of the heart is the only One Who can know what is in our heart.
Yet there are times, when we must pull up the “weeds” in the garden of the Lord lest the whole church suffer. How careful we must be in such times, for there is great danger that “precious wheat” will be uprooted as well. “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” Gal 6:1, 2 May we ask for wisdom from Above that we may proceed with love and care in those rare circumstances where a “weed” must be pulled up is my prayer.