Ask ye of the Lord rain in the time of the latter rain; so the Lord shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field. Zechariah 10:1.
In the East the former rain falls at the sowing time. It is necessary in order that the seed may germinate. Under the influence of the fertilizing showers, the tender shoot springs up. The latter rain, falling near the close of the season, ripens the grain, and prepares it for the sickle. The Lord employs these operations of nature to represent the work of the Holy Spirit. As the dew and the rain are given first to cause the seed to germinate, and then to ripen the harvest, so the Holy Spirit is given to carry forward, from one stage to another, the process of spiritual growth. The ripening of the grain represents the completion of the work of God’s grace in the soul. By the power of the Holy Spirit the moral image of God is to be perfected in the character. We are to be wholly transformed into the likeness of Christ….
Many have in a great measure failed to receive the former rain. They have not obtained all the benefits that God has thus provided for them. They expect that the lack will be supplied by the latter rain. When the richest abundance of grace shall be bestowed, they intend to open their hearts to receive it. They are making a terrible mistake. The work that God has begun in the human heart in giving His light and knowledge must be continually going forward. Every individual must realize his own necessity. The heart must be emptied of every defilement, and cleansed for the indwelling of the Spirit.
It was by the confession and forsaking of sin, by earnest prayer and consecration of themselves to God, that the early disciples prepared for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. The same work, only in greater degree, must be done now. Then the human agent had only to ask for the blessing, and wait for the Lord to perfect the work concerning him. It is God who began the work, and He will finish His work, making man complete in Jesus Christ. But there must be no neglect of the grace represented by the former rain. Only those who are living up to the light they have will receive greater light. Unless we are daily advancing in the exemplification of the active Christian virtues, we shall not recognize the manifestations of the Holy Spirit in the latter rain.—The Review and Herald, March 2, 1897.
Ye Shall Receive Power p. 25
—-Please pray for our Bible study contacts. We have not been able to deliver the lessons for the past two weeks because of sickness. Please pray that we will not lose any of them when we go back to see them. Rose
—-Please pray for my husband James he’s going in for Heart Surgery this Tuesday 8am his main artery is clogged they will be putting stents in we pray the surgery will go well and he will heal and feel better soon. Shanda
—-Please be praying for my friend Tami that was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. Dan
—-Please pray for 84 year old Dad. He had bilateral total knee replacements last Wednesday and his recovery isn’t going as planned. Vicki
Some years ago, I read about a man who became interested in treasure hunting. He risked all his money, all his time, all his reputation to find gold and jewels that went down to the depths of the ocean hundreds of years ago. Worse still, his son was killed helping him in his quest for these elusive riches. Despite that tragedy, he continued. Finally, he was successful. About 300 million dollars worth of gold and jewels were his. Then the government stepped in and threatened to take it all away to be put in some museum. Eventually, a compromise was made and the state took only 20% of the treasure.
We have a treasure book within our reach, yet how seldom we risk all to obtain the treasure contained therein. What a treasure the Scriptures are! God’s Holy Word is far more valuable than the treasure hunter’s gold and jewels. The Bible is irreplaceable and should be handled with reverence and awe. Through a study of the Holy Writ, we find the answers to life’s questions. Through them we find our Dear Saviour and the path that leads to Heaven.
The psalmist exclaims, “I have more understanding than all my teachers: for thy testimonies are my meditation. I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts. I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep thy word. I have not departed from thy judgments: for thou hast taught me. How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth! Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” Ps 119:99-105
Peter, when comparing his experience upon the Mount of Transfiguration to the Word of God, tells us that in God’s Word “we have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto [we] do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” 2 Peter 1:19-21 Think of it! The Scriptures are more sure than what we see around us, more sure than what we hear, more solid than what we feel, more real than the experiences of our life.
Paul in writing to Timothy explained to the young man the value of this Treasure. “And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” 2 Tim 3:15-17
It is well worth our exploration. It is well worth sacrificing all. It is well worth our time and effort to obtain its treasure. Jesus spoke of this very quest, “the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.” Matt 13:44-46
May we spend time each day exploring the Scriptures for the gems of truth it contains. May we seek after the gold that will never perish. May we allow nothing to stand in our way of obtaining the Treasure of all treasures even the Lord Jesus Christ.