Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Opened for Obedience

"Mine ear hast Thou opened.... I have not refrained my lips.... I have declared Thy faithfulness and salvation" (Psalm 40:6,9,10). "The man whose eyes are open hath said: He hath said, which heard the words of God, and knew the knowledge of the most High... there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Scepter shall rise out of Israel.... Out of Jacob shall He come that shall have dominion" (Numbers 24:15-19). "Open thy mouth for the dumb in the cause of all such as are appointed to destruction" (Proverbs 31:8).

You made our ears wise, Lord, thus opened to hear,
You opened our eyes, to the truth that is clear.
Your love is so plain in Your great revelation!
We would not refrain to share Your salvation!

And since You're commanding Your Gospel be told,
Lord, grant understanding, that we may be bold,
To go forth with weeping for those who are lost,
Thus sowing and reaping, and sparing no cost.

Monday, October 30, 2006

What in the World?

"And now, Lord, what wait I for? My hope is in Thee" (Psalm 39:7). "Days.... riches.... beauty... surely every man is vanity.... O spare me, that I may recover strength, before I go hence, and be no more" (Psalm 39:5,6,11,13).

What in the world, Oh Lord, wait I for?
My hope is forever in Jesus alone.
Before I am hurled from here evermore,
Let me endeavor to make His love known.

Our days here are fleeting, our riches are vain;
They're passing away like a withering rose.
Our beauty, depleting, soon turns to disdain,
Consumed everyday like our moth-eaten clothes.

Lord, why should we labor for things that are not,
And fight to the end for our temporal store?
Lord, grant us Your favor in what we have wrought,
As servants You send, and Your soldiers in war.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Grace for the Groaning

"Lord, all my desire is before Thee; and my groaning is not hid from Thee.... In Thee, O Lord, do I hope: Thou wilt heart, O Lord my God" (Psalm 38:9,15). "For He hath looked down from the height of His sanctuary, from heaven did the Lord behold the earth; to hear the groaning of the prisoner; to loose those that are appointed to death" (Psalm 102:19,20).

Lord, all my desire You surely have known
In trials by fire, in the floods when I groan.
Each time, in each place, and in each situation,
You've shown me Your grace, Your love, and salvation.

And though I despair, I am never alone.
I know that You care, and You hear when I groan.
And even in sorrow, You are working for good.
In heaven's tomorrow, it will be understood.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Foolish Faith

"He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool" (Proverbs 28:25).

There is an object of our trust
That renders us a fool:
Our own deceitful heart of lust
That seeks to have its rule.

Foolish faith! How many times
We learn it and bemoan
Our folly when our own will climbs
To sit on our heart's throne.

That throne belongs to Jesus Christ,
And rightly so it is!
He bought it when He sacrificed
Himself to make us His.

Oh rid us, Lord, of foolishness
And confidence in dust,
As we find all our righteousness
In Jesus, whom we trust.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Gladness and Glory of God

"My son, be wise, and make my heart glad, that I may answer him that reproacheth me" (Proverbs 27:11). "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God" (1 Corinthians 10:31).

I hear my heavenly Father say,
My son, be wise, and make Me glad.
O may these words attend my way
To guide me lest I make Him sad!

And can it be I have this power,
To gladden or to grieve His heart?
Is this the choice I make each hour
When I heed Him or depart?

Let me live then with this goal;
Let this be my daily story:
To live with all my heart and soul
For His gladness and His glory.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Run to Receive

"Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain (1 Corinthians 9:24). "Let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus" (Hebrews 12:1,2).

There is a prize for us who run,
While looking to our Lord:
To hear at last His words: "Well done!"
Shall be enough reward.

Run to win, yet not compete
With others in this race,
But to cast at Jesus' feet,
A crown that's won by grace.

Let us run then to obtain
That crown we'll long to give,
And we will not have run in vain
Nor shall we vainly live.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Save Some

"For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more.... I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. And this I do for the Gospel's sake" (1 Corinthians 9:19,22,23).

By every means, in every place
In every situation,
May God impart His saving grace
Through us for His salvation.

Lord, give to us a servant's walk
That we might gain the more,
That through us they may hear You knock,
And open their heart's door.

While we pray there will be many,
Lord, through us save some!
What a tragedy that any
Still refuse to come!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Love that Limits

"Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth.... But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumbling block to them that are weak.... And through thy knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died? But when ye so sin against the brethren, and wound their weak conscience, ye sin against Christ" (1 Corinthians 1,9,11,12).

Love that limits, makes us free
To live in such a way
That will help another see
The love of God today.

Love that seeks to edify
And live unselfishly,
Will often charge us to deny
Ourselves some liberty.

Love that seeks another's good,
Avoiding prideful strife,
Yearns to do what Jesus would,
And emulate His life.

Love that values other souls
As those for whom Christ died,
The Spirit of the Lord controls,
And Christ is magnified.

Love that models Christ shall thus
To our observers show
How Jesus gave Himself for us:
That's all they need to know.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Sorrowful Similes

"I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with Mine eye. Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding: whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee" (Psalm 32:8,9).

Let us not be as the horse,
Neither be found as the mule,
Which either is held back by force,
Or stubborn to go, as a rule.

This is God's reprimanding
To us illustrated in these
Which have no understanding;
What sorrowful similes!

For why should there be a need
For God to thus force His will?
Or why should He have to plead,
And find us so stubborn still?

Let us take heed to His voice
Preparing our hearts to obey;
Not led by force, but by choice,
Attentive to what He will say.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Love the Lord

"O love the Lord, all ye His saints" (Psalm 31:23). "For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's" (1 Corinthians 6:20).

Oh love the Lord! How right it is
For those He has redeemed!
The price He paid to make us His
Is more than we have dreamed!

The depth of sorrow He endured
Exceeds imagination.
He weighed the cost and then procured
Our souls with His salvation.

The height of mercy He extended
Soars out of sight above.
What His Father comprehended
Was infinite in love.

Glorify Him, with your soul,
Your body, and your spirit!
He paid redemption's price in full;
Let all the world hear it!

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Girded with Gladness

"Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.... Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing: Thou hast put off my sackcloth, and girded me with gladness; to the end that my glory may sing praise to Thee, and not be silent" (Psalm 30:5,11,12).

God has filled our hearts with joy
And girded us with gladness
To the end we may employ
His song where there is sadness.

Let us not be silent now
While we may offer cheer
To those whom God would thus endow
His joy, and dry each tear.

Weeping comes for just a night,
But night can seem so long!
So in this darkness, shine His light
And sing His joyful song.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Purging for Peace

"The Lord sitteth King forever. The Lord will give strength unto His people; the Lord will bless His people with peace" (Psalm 29:10,11). "A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes. Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?" (Proverbs 20:8,9). "Purge out therefore the old leaven... as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us" (1 Corinthians 5:7). "Who... when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high" (Hebrews 1:3).

The Lord gives peace and purity
To those who are His own.
And this is our security:
He's sits upon the throne.

He sat as King upon the flood
To purge in Noah's day,
Yet as our Savior shed His blood
To purge our sins away.

The purging for our peace begins
And ends in Jesus Christ,
Who by Himself once purged our sins,
When He was sacrificed.

He's seated now and satisfied;
His work is fully done.
And none can say they're purified,
Except by God the Son.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Standard that Stands

"Because they regard not the works of the Lord, nor the operation of His hands, He shall destroy them, and not build them up" (Psalm 28:5). "Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end. There are many devices in a man's heart, nevertheless the counsel of the Lord, that shall stand.... Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth to err from the words of knowledge. An ungodly witness scorneth judgment: and the mouth of the wicked devoureth iniquity. Judgments are prepared for scorners, and stripes for the back of fools." (Proverbs 19:20,21,27-29).

Because there is scorning and so much disdain
For the works of the Lord by some,
Does that somehow change God's warning so plain,
That judgment shall nonetheless come?

Because they regard not the works of the Lord,
Nor heed what He does with His hands,
Does that mean the judgment they're calloused toward
Is void and it no longer stands?

Hear counsel that you may be wise in the end!
For why should you perish with fools?
The standard of God shall not break, neither bend,
But stand for as long as God rules.

The counsel of God, thus standing forever,
Commands everyone to repent.
Those who imagine that scorning is clever,
Are fools to the greatest extent!

Cease then to hear the instruction that causes
The fool and the scorner to err.
The careless rush on, but the wise-hearted pauses
To heed God's command to beware.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Closeness of Christ

"Thou hast been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me, O God of my salvation. When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up" (Psalm 27:9,10). "There is a Friend that sticketh closer than a brother" (Proverbs 18:24).

He's closer than the dearest one
We hold in our relation;
Than father, mother, daughter, son:
This God of our salvation.

He's closer than our sisters, brothers,
Or the dearest lifelong friends.
Jesus Christ, above all others,
Loves with love that never ends.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Place of Praise

"Lord, I have loved the habitation of Thy house, and the place where Thine honor dwelleth" (Psalm 26:8). "But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: that, according as it is written, He the glorieth, let him glory in the Lord" (1 Corinthians 1:30,31).

The place where Jesus' honor dwells
Is where I love to be,
Where praise ascends with love that tells
What Jesus did for me.

How pleasant is place of His
Where He receives the glory,
For all He's done, for all He is,
As told in His love story.

He is our wisdom, righteousness,
Our holy separation,
Our redemption, refuge, rest,
And our great salvation.

Yes, where His honor fills the place,
That is the place I love.
Yet here it's just a glimpse of grace:
What shall it be above?

Monday, October 16, 2006

Divinely Directed

"What man is he that feareth the Lord? Him shall He teach in the way that He shall choose" (Psalm 25:12). "A man's heart deviseth his way: but the Lord directeth his steps" (Proverbs 16:9).

To live in the fear of the Lord everyday
Is to always invite God's inspection;
To pray as we plan, thus devising our way,
While looking to God for direction.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Criteria of Christ

"Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who shall stand in His holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart, who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive the blessing from the Lord, and righteousness from the God of His salvation" (Psalm 24:3-5).

Who indeed is qualified, with clean and holy hands,
With heart and soul thus purified, to meet the law's demands?
One and only One could meet, God's holy standard set,
And never from His law retreat, and never once forget.

Jesus Christ, and He alone, this high criteria filled,
Who then ascended to God's throne, and to His holy hill,
To stand within that place, and thus, the blessing to receive:
The righteousness He gives to us, and all who will believe.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Vitality in the Valley

"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me" (Psalm 23:4). "The righteous hath hope in his death" (Proverbs 14:32).

We know that soon life's winding path
Leads to the valley of death.
Yet He who rescued us from wrath
Attends us with each breath.

Each step we take, each breath we finish,
Draws from our finite supply,
Which soon, at last, shall be diminished;
Then we're appointed to die.

What sweet assurance! The presence of God
Is with us each step of the way!
The comfort of staff, correction of rod,
Has guarded us lest we should stray.

This is the hope of those who are blest,
Whom God declares righteous by grace!
Death merely ushers us home to our rest,
Where God has reserved us a place!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Common Comfort

"Whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope. Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus, that ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.... Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost" (Romans 15:4-6).

Ah! Here indeed is common ground
We have with one another:
Our help, our hope, and joy abound,
In Christ, and in no other.

Then let us glorify our God
For hope He thus imparts,
With love His Spirit sheds abroad
Within likeminded hearts.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Kind of Kingdom

"The kingdom of God is not meat and drink, but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost" (Romans 14:17).

The kingdom of God is not meat and drink,
Or pious facade that forbids us to think.
For social religion, contrived regulation,
And empty tradition, are not His salvation.

For we are released, by God's righteousness,
By His perfect peace, and His joyfulness,
To His liberty through His Holy Spirit,
For all who will see, and all who will hear it.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Better Banners

"We will rejoice in Thy salvation, and in the name of our God we will set up our banners.... Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the Lord our God." (Psalm 20:5,7).

We raise our banners in the name
Of Jesus Christ our King.
His great salvation we proclaim,
And of His mercies sing.

Other banners that are thrust
So high into the air
Are not worthy of our trust
Nor with our Lord compare.

Some may trust in chariots, horses,
And the things soon must fail.
Christ is calling out His forces
With His promise to prevail.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Sensible Sacrifice

"Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in Thy sight, O Lord, my Strength and my Redeemer" (Psalm 19:14). "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" (Romans 12:1).

What could be more sensible,
Than giving to the Lord
A sacrifice acceptable
In every spoken word?

What more should we render,
In view of our salvation?
Our heart we may surrender
With every meditation!

It seems, Lord, only right,
And no less will suffice,
To be pleasing in Your sight
Than a living sacrifice!

Monday, October 09, 2006

More Meek

"Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth" (Numbers 12:3). "Take My yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart, ye shall find rest unto your souls" (Matthew 11:29).

Moses was the meekest man of all upon the earth,
As a vessel that God's hand had made with precious worth.
Yet a meeker Man than he would come another day:
"Take My yoke and learn of Me," this greater Man would say.

Yes, that Man is Jesus Christ, God's meek and lowly Son!
He was for us sacrificed, who were by sin undone.
O wondrous invitation, that we too might learn to be
More meek in His salvation, by His Spirit's liberty!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Transient Treasure

"Men of this world... have their portion in this life... whose belly Thou fillest with Thy hid treasure: they are full of children,and leave the rest of their substance to their babes. As for me, I will behold Thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied, when I awake, with Thy likeness" (Psalm 17:14,15). "That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus" (Ephesians 2:7). "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face" (1 Corinthians 13:12). "And they shall see His face" (Revelation 22:4).

Those who only hold their treasure
In this passing world today,
Soon shall find, to their displeasure,
Their transient treasure hurled away.

As for me, I shall be behold
My Savior face to face,
And through the ages He'll unfold
The riches of His grace.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Righteousness for Wretchedness

"And Moses said unto to the Lord.... If I have found favor in Thy sight... let me not see my wretchedness" (Numbers 11:11,15). "O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord.... For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness.... For the Scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed" (Romans 7:24,25, 10:10,11).

Lord, You've seen the worst of me
In all my wretchedness,
And yet You went to Calvary
To give me righteousness.

That wretched man You know I am,
I'll never fully see.
For You have suffered as the Lamb
That I may righteous be.

Your holy eyes behold it all,
My nature so depraved,
But You have bidden me to call
Upon You and be saved.

And thus You've hidden from my view
My sinfulness and shame,
And turned my eyes instead to You,
To call upon Your name.

Friday, October 06, 2006

The Call to Come

"And Moses said... We are journeying unto the place of which the Lord said, I will give it you: come thou with us, and we will do thee good: for the Lord hath spoken good concerning Israel" (Numbers 10:29).

Friend, we're going to the place
Where God has promised rest.
Won't you come now by His grace
To journey with the blest?

Come with us! We're going home
To be with Christ our God!
Why should you still further roam
In darkness where you've trod?

Come with us where Jesus said
He'll lead us all the way!
The glory land is just ahead;
Don't wait another day!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Know Knowledge

"Have all the workers of iniquity no knowledge?" (Psalm 14:4). "And we KNOW that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose" (Romans 8:28).

There is an inconsistency
Commended by the lost.
They care not for eternity,
Nor do they count its cost.

But temporal things consume their mind,
That soon must pass away.
They do not know that they are blind,
To things that come to stay.

They have no interest in the thing,
That God has done or said.
Their motto is: Eat, drink, and sing:
Tomorrow we are dead.

But God makes known His truth to all
Who call upon Him still,
And thus have loved Him and are called
According to His will.

Thus we know eternally
What God now makes us know.
There's so much more for us to see,
And much more God would show!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Led by the Lord

"I have taught thee in the way of wisdom; I have led thee in right paths.... The path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.... Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established" (Proverbs 4:11,18,26). "So it was always: the cloud covered it by day, and the appearance of fire by night... And so it was, when the cloud abode from even unto the morning, and that the cloud was taken up in the morning, then they journeyed: whether it was by day or by night that the cloud was taken up, they journeyed. Or whether it were two days, or a month, or a year, that the cloud tarried upon the tabernacle, remaining thereon, the children of Israel abode in their tents, and journeyed not: but when it was taken up, they journeyed" (Numbers 9:16,21,22). "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God" (Romans 8:14).

Led by the cloud by day,
Led by the fire by night:
All through that wilderness way,
God led His people aright.

His Spirit that moved in that cloud,
And led them by night with His fire,
Is now in God's people endowed,
To lead in His holy desire.

Whether at home or abroad,
Whether a year, month, or day,
All of the children of God
Are led thus to go or to stay.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Power vs. Puffing

"For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, now will I arise, saith the Lord; I will set him in safety from him that puffeth at him. The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O Lord, Thou shalt preserve them from this generation forever" (Psalm 12:5-7). "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart.... For the Lord shall be thy confidence.... He giveth grace unto the lowly" (Proverbs 3:5,26,34).

God has risen to give aid
To the poor and needy soul;
God has said, "Be not afraid,"
Showing us He's in control.

Let the wolf, then, huff and puff;
Soon his words shall disappear.
God has spoken; that's enough
To deliver us from fear.

God preserves His words forever,
And His truth is our defense.
Earth shall pass, but His words never!
Let this be our confidence.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Gift of God

"For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord" (Romans 6:23).

How wonderful is the alternative
To the wages that sin would afford:
Death was our portion, but rather we live
Through Jesus our Savior and Lord!

How costly this gift our Savior has bought,
Yet freely bestowed to our soul!
Sweeping away the death that we wrought,
His gives life eternal and full!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Turn to Talk

"And when Moses was gone into the tabernacle of the congregation to speak with Him, then he heard the voice of One speaking unto him from off the mercy seat that was upon the ark of the testimony, from between the two cherubim: and He spake unto him" (Numbers 7:89). "Turn you... behold, I will pour out My Spirit unto you; I will make known My words unto you" (Proverbs 1:23).

How often when we turn to pray
Our Lord would interrupt
With something He has first to say
When we with Him have supped!

So let us be attentive then
To listen and to learn,
Lest we conclude with our "amen",
Denying God His turn.