And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. Revelation 20:12.
The Scriptures declare, “God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil” (Ecclesiastes 12:14). There is not a shadow of doubt about this matter. . . . Sin may be concealed, denied, covered up from father, mother, wife, children, and associates. No one but the guilty actors may cherish the least suspicion of the wrong, but it is laid bare before the intelligences of heaven. The darkness of the darkest night, the secrecy of all deceptive arts, is not sufficient to veil one thought from the knowledge of the Eternal. . . .
The Lord beheld Adam and Eve as they took of the forbidden tree. In their guilt they fled from His presence and “hid themselves,” but God saw them; they could not cover their shame from His eyes. When Cain slew his brother, he thought to hide his crime by denial of his deed, but the Lord said, “The voice of thy brother’s blood crieth unto me from the ground” (Genesis 4:10). . . .
All sin unrepented of and unconfessed will remain upon the books of record. It will not be blotted out, it will not go beforehand to judgment, to be canceled by the atoning blood of Jesus. The accumulated sins of every individual will be written with absolute accuracy, and the penetrating light of God’s law will try every secret of darkness. In proportion to the light, to the opportunities, and the knowledge of God’s claims upon them will be the condemnation of the rejecters of God’s mercy.
The day of final settlements is just before us. . . .
The Bible presents the law of God as a perfect standard by which to shape the life and character. The only perfect example of obedience to its precepts is found in the Son of God, the Saviour of lost mankind. There is no stain of unrighteousness upon Him, and we are bidden to follow in His steps.
That I May Know Him p. 359
—-Please pray that God will continue to lead Ruel into all truth. E
—–Please pray for D and M who are going through troubles. JT
—-Pray for Tom’s sister Margaret, she will be 96 in April. She fell outside in her yard and broke both wrists. She lives alone takes care of herself she is very alert has a sharp mind. Also pray for Tom as his surgery is the 27th. Mary
—–Please pray for Tim and family as they go to ______ for cancer treatment. Pray for its success and for their safety. Rose
Until I was five, my grandmother had a piano. When I showed an interest in it and began trying to pick out songs on it, she sold it. It nearly broke my heart. She should have given me lessons instead. From that moment, I kept the desire to learn to play the piano bottled up inside of me. A couple of months before my 14th birthday, my mother told me that she had enough money saved to buy me a piano or to pay for lessons, but she could not afford both. She worked very hard for long hours and even then, we had almost nothing. So this present was extra special. I reasoned, “If I choose the lessons, I’ll have nothing to practice on and they’ll do me no good.” So I chose the piano.
My grandmother let me have a hymnal that she never used. My mother showed me where middle C was on the keyboard and on the music. Then she said, “If you really want to learn, you’ll figure it out.” From what I had learned in choir at school, by the time my birthday arrived, I could play Rock of Ages and a few other songs. God blessed and in a couple of more months, I could play any song in that hymn book. There was so much about music that I didn’t even begin to realize, but that didn’t bother me. I just loved playing. My grandmother gave me her old sheet music, and I began a collection of popular music from the 1860’s through the 1920’s. Beyond that era, I didn’t care for the music much.
A short time later, I started going to church. The piano player in the youth department had just gone away to school, so they had no one to play. When they asked me if I could play the piano, I made the mistake of answering in the affirmative. They told me that I could play for song service. That was a disaster. I had never heard any of the songs and I didn’t sight read very well. It is a wonder that I kept going to church for every week I would literally get sick to my stomach I was so afraid. I felt very unsure of myself. Finally, I began staying in the adult division to escape having to play.
Someone wise must have realized what the problem was and set me to work playing the piano for Cradle Roll. By the time I was 18, I was sight reading much better and could play nearly any song in the church hymnal we used then. When asked to play for a special meeting they were having, I began to feel a little proud. I walked up to the piano and began to play “Onward Christian Soldiers.” I was doing fairly well and was really enjoying myself, when suddenly a puff of wind blew the pages of my song book and I was looking at a completely different song. I didn’t know what to do. I stopped. The congregation kept singing. I sort of knew the tune and tried to pick it out with my right hand while fumbling through the book with my left hand, trying desperately to find the right page. Why of why hadn’t I noticed what page number I had been playing. I felt a hundred pairs of eyes looking at me. I was totally humiliated.
After what seemed like an eternity, my friend Laurel brought up another hymnal that she had opened to the right page. She pointed to the right place in the music; and I began to play as if nothing had ever happened, but inside I felt shaky and unsure of myself. She took other hymnals and propped the book open so I would not lose my place again. It was all so very embarrassing, but it was very good for me. That pride that I had begun to feel, had completely vanished. Over the years, I have had many more embarrassing moments when playing that have not allowed pride to return.
Jesus taught, “whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.” Matt 23:12 “And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.” Luke 18:9-14
Many times Jesus helped His disciples understand this principle. It was a hard lesson for them to learn. Their whole focus was on being the greatest and having the highest place in the kingdom that they were sure that Jesus was about to establish. “And he came to Capernaum : and being in the house he asked them, What was it that ye disputed among yourselves by the way? But they held their peace: for by the way they had disputed among themselves, who should be the greatest. And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all. And he took a child, and set him in the midst of them: and when he had taken him in his arms, he said unto them, Whosoever shall receive one of such children in my name, receiveth me: and whosoever shall receive me, receiveth not me, but him that sent me.” Mark 9:33-37
Really, we have so little to be proud of. Even the most talented person is dependant upon God for his very breath. James reminds us, “For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” James 4:14 Peter agrees, “For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: But the word of the Lord endureth for ever.” 1 Peter 1:24,25
Praise God that “He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities….Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him. For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust. As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more. But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness unto children’s children; To such as keep his covenant, and to those that remember his commandments to do them.” Ps 103:10-13
Paul wrote, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.” Rom 12:1-3
May we never allow pride to fill us with self-importance. May we always remember to stay close to our Dear Saviour Who is our Only Strength, our Only Helper. May we look away from self and focus on Him Who gave His life to redeem us is my prayer.