Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Invalidating the Invitation

"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. And he said unto him, I will not go; but I will depart to mine own land, and to my kindred" (Numbers 10:29,30). "A certain man made a great supper, and bade many.... Come, for all things are now ready. And they all with one consent began to make excuse.... I say unto you, that none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper" (Luke 14:16-24).

Come with us and see the good
Of all the promised land!
God has made it understood
And stretches forth His hand.

How marvelous His invitation!
How can it be refused?
Yet many brush aside salvation,
And wish to be excused!

Beware of Satan's great seduction
That smoothes the slippery slope,
And paves the highway of destruction,
Until there is no hope.

Come, for all that saves is done!
We journey to that place
Prepared ahead by God the Son
For all He saves by grace!

Come, and do not hesitate;
Avoid procrastination,
Lest you should thus invalidate
His gracious invitation!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Head and Heels

"The proud have hid a snare for me, and cords; they have spread a net by the wayside; the have set gins for me... O God the Lord, the Strength of my salvation, Thou hast covered my head in the day of battle" (Psalm 140:5,7).

Lord, how many times You have covered my head,
While the enemy hid unawares!
Lord, how many times You have graciously led
And delivered my feet from their snares.

Lord, how many times in the pathway of life
You have rescued my soul from their gins!
Lord, how many times in the battle and strife
You have kept me from unwitting sins!

I know I can't tell now the rest of that story;
Such mercies are hid from my view,
But when I am home, Lord, with You in Your glory,
I'll see then what You brought me through!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Close to the Cloud

"And when the cloud was taken up from the tabernacle, then after that the children of Israel journeyed: and in the place where the cloud abode, there the children of Israel pitched their tents.... whether it were two days, or a month, or a year that the cloud tarried upon the tabernacle... they kept the charge of the Lord, at the commandment of the Lord" (Numbers 9:17-23).

As Israel in the wilderness
Who waited for the cloud to lead,
We wait for God that He may bless
Where and when He has decreed.

A day or two, a month, or year,
Whether time was small or large,
The cloud of God was always near;
For Israel would keep His charge.

And so it is with us today
As pilgrims in this desert land:
Where God will lead, we go or stay,
And keep the charge of His command.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Prayer and Provision

"In the day when I cried, Thou answeredst me and strengthenedst me with strength in my soul" (Psalm 138:3).

In the day when I cried, You answered me, Lord,
And strengthened my faltering soul.
So shall I pray for the strength You afford
And delight in provision so full!

I'll not look for strength in my own fainting heart:
How dry is that well from within!
I'll pray for provision that You will impart,
For strength that will overcome sin.

Thank You, O Lord, for hearing my prayer,
Delivering my soul in that day.
So upon You I will cast every care,
Assured that You hear when I pray.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Much Received, Much Required

"Unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more" (Luke 12:48).

To those who have been given much,
From each of them is much required.
Our stewardship from God is such,
For all the blessings we've acquired.

Surely there's a consequence
For all the truth we have received
That should inspire diligence
In all of us who have believed.

Teach us, Lord, to live in view
Of our accountability,
For all You've done and yet will do
To give us life abundantly.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Sparrow Spectator

"Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows" (Luke 12:6,7).

God, who never once forgot
Or lost a sparrow from His view,
Bids you, dear one, to fear not:
He cares much more for you!

God, who never once has slumbered,
Promises to guard your soul.
Even all your hairs are numbered!
Rest assured, He's in control.

God, who never turns away
His ear from hearing all our prayers,
Bids you come to Him today,
Casting on Him all your cares.

God, the Keeper and Spectator
Of every sparrow on this earth,
As your Savior and Creator
Values you of much more worth!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Manifest Majesty

"For I know that the Lord is great... Whatsoever the Lord pleased, that did He in heaven, and in earth, in the seas, and all deep places... Thy name, O Lord, endureth forever; and Thy memorial, O Lord, throughout all generations" (Psalm 135:5,6,13).

We surely know our Lord is great;
His greatness surely is not hid.
We only need to contemplate
The wondrous things that our Lord did.

Our Lord has done as He has pleased
As manifested in each place:
In heaven, earth, and in the seas,
We see His greatness and His grace.

His memorial is in creation
By everything that He has made.
Through each and every generation
We see His majesty displayed.

His memory is in salvation
That brought Him down from heaven's throne.
How marvelous His demonstration
Of love that ransomed all His own!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Queenly Questions

"The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with the men of this generation, and condemn them: for she came from the utmost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and behold, a greater than Solomon is here" (Luke 11:23).

Our Lord commended the queen of the south
For asking the questions she did
And hearing the answers from Solomon's mouth
Whose wisdom from her was not hid.

This is the queen who will rise up to judge
The men of this proud generation,
Despising reproof, refusing to budge
To turn to the Lord for salvation.

Come with an honest, inquiring mind,
For God has the answers you need.
Leave all your presuppositions behind,
And let His clear evidence lead.

"Come now," God says; that's not a suggestion!
Come now; you dare not delay!
Come as the queen did with each honest question;
Come while it's still called today.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Uniquely Unified

"How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity" (Psalm 133:1). "A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favor rather than silver and gold. The rich and the poor meet together: the Lord is the Maker of them all" (Proverbs 22:1,2). "When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name" (Luke 11:2).

How very good indeed it is
As brethren in this family
To know we are forever His
Who gave Himself for you and me!

Gathered thus around our Lord
Who took upon Himself our shame,
Young and old and rich and poor,
Our Lord and Savior is the same.

Uniquely we find unity
As each of us can sweetly claim
For time and all eternity
Access by our Father's name.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Blessing His Beloved

"The Lord bless thee, and keep thee. The Lord make His face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee. The Lord lift up His countenance upon thee, and give thee peace" (Numbers 6:24-26). "The Lord hath chosen Zion; He hath desired it for His habitation. This is My rest forever... I will abundantly bless her provision" (Psalm 132:13-15). "One thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken from her" (Luke 10:42).

The Lord delights to bless His own,
On whom He shines His face.
His sovereign will upon His throne
Secures for them His grace.

The Lord has chosen as His rest
His own by their decision.
Abundantly for them He's blessed
His merciful provision.

This is all we really need:
To give to God our heart,
As Mary gladly gave Him heed
And chose the better part.

Lord, we thank You for Your love
That blessed us with salvation
By our Savior from above
Through His humiliation!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Happy Humility

"Lord, my heart is not haughty, nor mine eyes lofty: neither do I exercise myself in great matters, or in things too high for me" (Psalm 131:1). "Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?.... Man's goings are of the Lord; how can a man then understand his own way?" (Proverbs 20:9,24). "In that hour, Jesus rejoiced in spirit, and said, I thank Thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that Thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and has revealed them unto babes" (Luke 10:21).

Lord of heaven and of earth,
I find I'm in my happiest state,
When I contemplate Your worth,
Confessing You alone are great!

I cannot do the simplest thing,
Such as cleanse myself from sin.
I'm trusting You alone to bring
The grace my heart rejoices in.

I cannot even understand
The things pertaining to my way.
My purposes are in Your hand,
As are my goings everyday.

I am resolved to hear Your voice
And do Your will for me revealed,
And in humility rejoice
That by Your grace I'm cleansed and healed!

Friday, June 19, 2009

The Blessing of the Blotting

"And this water that causeth the curse shall go into thy bowels... And the priest shall write these curses in a book, and he shall blot them out with the bitter water" (Numbers 5:22,23). "If Thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand? But there is forgiveness with Thee" (Psalm 130:3,4). "The cup which My Father hath given Me, shall I not drink it?" (John 18:11). "And you, being dead in your sins... hath He quickened together with Him, having blotted out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us" (Colossians 2:13,14).

The curses written in the book
For sins we carried out,
Are gone forever! Come and look!
They've all been blotted out!

That bitter water in the verse
That symbolized our cup,
Has blotted out our dreadful curse,
When Jesus drank it up.

If God would mark iniquities,
How great would be our loss!
He blotted out each sin He sees
By dying on the cross!

Thank You, Lord, for what You did
To purge our sins in love,
Which otherwise could not be hid
From holy eyes above.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Language of Life

"Death and life are in the power of the tongue" (Proverbs 18:21). "James and John... said, Lord, wilt Thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did? But He turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them" (Luke 9:54-56).

Death and life are in the power
Of the tongue's persuasiveness.
Let us speak in this late hour
Words of life that save and bless.

Words to warn and words to woo,
Words of everlasting life:
Words that God confirms are true
That offer peace amid the strife.

God so loved the world that He
Gave to us His precious Son,
That by His grace we may be free,
Because His work that saves is done.

The Gospel shows God's life and love
Amid this world of death and hate.
This is the Spirit we are of
That we, by love, should demonstrate.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Discernment Denied

"Wherefore is there a price in the hand of a fool to get wisdom, seeing he hath no heart for it?" (Proverbs 17:16). "And Herod said, John have I beheaded: but who is this, of whom I hear such things? And he desired to see Him.... His disciples were with Him: and He asked them saying.... Whom say ye that I am? Peter answering said, the Christ of God" (Luke 9:9,18-20).

Why do some discern what's right,
While others are without a clue?
Why are some deprived of sight,
While others clearly see what's true?

Discernment comes not by a school
Where only the elite have learned;
The intellect may be a fool,
No matter what degree is earned.

The fool, by Scripture's definition,
Is one who has no heart for God,
Exchanging heaven for perdition,
Refusing grace for judgment's rod.

The reason some will not discern
The truth to which Christ testified,
Is that their hearts refuse to turn,
And thus, by choice, they are denied.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Healing for the Hopeless

"One daughter, about twelve years of age... lay a dying... And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, which had spent all her living upon physicians, neither could be healed of any, came behind Him, and touched the border of His garment: and immediately her issue of blood stanched... There cometh one... saying... Thy daughter is dead... [Jesus] took her by the hand, and called, saying, Maid, arise. And her spirit came again, and she arose" (Luke 8:41-55).

How vain is our labor to heal ourselves!
How wasted our time and our resources spent!
How pointless the searching of books on our shelves
Or worldly experts to whom we are sent!

Healing is hopeless without Jesus Christ;
How clearly we see this in Scripture revealed
In the woman who spent all and nothing sufficed
Who languished for twelve years and still was not healed.

We see this as well in the twelve-year old girl
Who helplessly died as she laid on her bed.
These are examples portraying this world,
Hopelessly sin-sick and spiritually dead.

Yet this is exactly why Jesus Christ came,
To accomplish the healing that we never could!
We are dead in our sins, we are not only lame;
There's not even one on this earth who is good.

Our Lord Jesus Christ is still healing today
All who will trust Him as their great Physician!
Hopeless and helpless, we dare not delay
In coming to Him in our hopeless condition!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Weeping and Working

"He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him" (Psalm 126:6). "Now the man out of whom the devils departed besought Him that he might be with Him: but Jesus sent him away, saying, Return to thine own house, and show how great things God hath done unto thee" (Luke 8:38,39).

We ought to go with precious seed
To lost and straying sheep,
As Christ in us supplies this need:
A heart prepared to weep.

How great the things that God has done
Since Christ has entered in!
How great our joy when God the Son
Delivered us from sin!

Yet surely with His joy is grief,
And rightly it is so,
For those yet lost in unbelief,
To whom we ought to go.

Now send us, Lord, into Your fields,
And in us, Lord, employ
Your love that weeps and doubtless yields
A harvest full of joy!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Jeopardy with Jesus

"And there came down a storm of wind on the lake, and they were filled with water, and were in jeopardy. And they came to Him... Then He arose, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was a calm. And He said unto them, Where is your faith?" (Luke 8:22-23-25).

It's better to be in jeopardy
With Jesus our Lord being here
Than living with ungodly apathy,
As judgment is yet drawing near.

It's better to hear the proper reproof
Of Christ who will question our doubt
Than carelessly standing with sinners aloof,
Indifferent to how things turn out.

It's better, far better, to be with the Lord,
Whether in peace or in dangerous strife,
Than all that this world can vainly afford
In all of its false assurance in life.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Help from Heaven

"If it had not been the Lord who was on our side... the stream had gone over our soul... Our soul is escaped as a bird out of the snare of the fowlers: the snare is broken, and we are escaped. Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth" (Psalm 124:1-8).

Our soul was entrapped as bird that was snared,
But we have escaped, for the snare has been broken!
Our help came from heaven because our Lord cared
And rescued our souls as the prophets had spoken.

Our Lord who made heaven and earth merely spoke,
And all of creation could thereby begin.
Yet only by coming from heaven He broke
The snare that condemned us and held us in sin.

If it had not been the Lord on our side,
If help had not come from heaven above,
Surely in hopelessness we would have died!
Praise God for the help of His infinite love!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Servant's Serenity

"Behold, as the eyes of servants look unto the hand of their masters... so our eyes wait upon the Lord our God... for we are exceedingly filled... with the scorning of those that are at ease, and with the contempt of the proud" (Psalm 123:2-4).

How good it is to keep our eyes
Upon the Lord our God,
And not upon the so-called wise
This world will applaud.

This is the serenity
That God gives to His own:
Our sole escape from vanity
Is in our Lord alone.

How bitter the alternative,
When scorning fills our soul!
How sweet it is at last to give
Our Savior full control!

As servants of the Lord we wait
To do as He will please,
And thus our joy and peace are great,
Though scorned by those at ease.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Pray for the Prince

"Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee" (Psalm 122:6).

All who will pray for Jerusalem's peace
Should pray for the Prince of peace to come back,
For only when Christ and His kingdom increase,
Shall peace be abundant and nevermore lack.

Pray for the Prince of Peace to return,
For then shall Jerusalem break forth and sing!
Let all who are longing for peace now discern
That peace which is true must be brought by our King.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Well of Words

"The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life" (Proverbs 10:11). "A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good... for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh" (Luke 6:45).

How deep is the well where wisdom is found!
How vast are the treasures we find!
God's Word is the well where truth will abound,
Enriching the heart and the mind.

The heart is deceitful above everything;
So wicked there's no human cure.
The well of God's Word will heal and bring
Abundance of wisdom that's pure.

Thank You, O Lord, for healing our hearts
With the well of Your words You gave
That fills us with treasure Your wisdom imparts,
Abundant with power to save!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Perfect Peace Plan

"My soul hath long dwelt with him that hateth peace. I am for peace: but when I speak, they are for war" (Psalm 120:6,7). "But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you, bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you" (Luke 6:27,28).

My soul has lived for quite a while
With those despising peace,
Who cloak their hatred with a smile,
Yet cursing does not cease.

We have our orders from above,
God's plan for peace so wise,
To fight our enemies with love,
Though they may still despise.

For God has shown to us His will
Toward our foes today:
That we should love and bless them still,
Do good to them, and pray.

No, it's not the strategy of man
(Nor the way that we would choose);
But it surely is God's perfect plan,
By His Spirit He will use.

The plan of peace that guarantees
The battle will be won
Is fought in prayer upon our knees
To glorify God's Son.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Straying yet Staying

"I have longed for Thy salvation, O Lord, and Thy law is my delight.... I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek Thy servant, for I do not forget Thy commandments" (Psalm 119:174, 176).

It is not hidden, Lord, from You
That sometimes we have strayed,
Yet still we hold to what is true,
And in Your Word have stayed.

To whom else shall we go today
To hear that which is right?
Though like sheep we've gone astray,
In God's Word we delight.

Seek Your servants, Lord, we pray,
For we cannot forget
That You have led us all the way
And all our needs have met.

And yes, I know that it seems odd,
That there would be a season
When ransomed sheep yet stray from God,
Though there's no valid reason.

Faithful Shepherd, come and bless,
And we shall be restored;
And lead us in Your righteousness
Until we're home, O Lord.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Treasure and Tranquility

"I rejoice at Thy Word, as one that findeth GREAT spoil... GREAT peace have they which love Thy Law: and nothing shall offend them" (Psalm 119:162,165).

How great is the treasure we find in Your Word
That causes our hearts to rejoice,
Like those who find spoil by victory secured
As joyfully lift up their voice!

How great is the peace and tranquility known
By those who delight in Your Law,
Now justified fully by God's grace alone,
Who worship in love and in awe.

Lord, thank You for treasure and tranquility,
So rich and so pure without end!
How great is our wealth for eternity
And our peace which no foe can offend.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

The NEED for NO

"Simon Peter... fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord.... And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not; from henceforth thou shalt catch men. And when they had brought their ships to land, they forsook all, and followed Him" (Luke 5:10,11).

How good it is that when we pray,
The Lord sometimes says: "No."
As Simon's prayer was turned away,
Who prayed that He would go.

"Depart from me!" was his request,
"I am a sinful man!"
But Jesus Christ our Lord knew best;
He had better plan.

How graciously our Lord declined
To do as Simon pleaded!
Our Lord had all the best in mind;
He knew what Simon needed.

Catching men was better far
Than all the fish they caught!
How wrong our prayers so often are!
How limited our thought!

Thus we pray to God above
And wait for His reply,
Knowing that, in perfect love,
Our prayer He may deny.

Friday, June 05, 2009

What a Word!

"And they were all amazed, and spake among themselves, saying, What a word is this! For with authority and power He commandeth the unclean spirits, and they come out" (Luke 4:36).

What a Word our Lord commands
With power and authority!
My heart in awe and wonder stands
At what His Word has done for me!

What a Word our Lord has shown
Displayed in all of His creation!
Oh what mercies He makes known
In the Word of His salvation!

What a Word our Lord has spoken
Though He is high and lifted up,
Inviting contrite spirits broken
To come and dine and with Him sup.

What a Word from heaven came
To manifest His truth and grace!
Upon the cross He bore our shame
To take the guilty sinner's place!

What a Word we find in Christ!
Lord, we stand in awe amazed:
The Word made flesh was sacrificed;
May Jesus Christ our Lord be praised!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Hope and Healing

"The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He hath anointed Me to preach the Gospel to the poor; He hath sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised" (Luke 4:18).

To brokenhearted, blind, and bruised,
To captives in oppression bound,
Our Savior preached the Gospel news
That hope and healing could be found.

The good news of our hope and healing
Wasn't found in vain tradition.
The Gospel truth He came revealing
Wasn't cloaked in mere religion.

Our hope and healing finally came,
Yet not from doctrines on a shelf,
But rather in the Savior's name,
When our Lord Jesus gave Himself.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Ordered in His Ordinance

"Order my steps in Thy Word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me" (Psalm 119:133). "Trust in the Lord... Lean not on thine own understanding.... Be not wise in thine own eyes... Despise not the chastening of the Lord; neither be weary of His correction" (Proverbs 3:5-7,11).

Lord, order my steps in Your Word;
Let not any sin have dominion,
Like pride in my heart You have heard,
When wise in my faulty opinion.

Lord, order my steps with correction,
In those times when I think I am wise.
Oh Lord, how I need Your direction!
Your reproof, Lord, I would not despise.

Lord, order my steps in Your way,
Instead of my own understanding.
Lord, teach me to trust what You say
And do what Your Word is commanding.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Understanding for the Undertaking

"I am Thy servant; give me understanding, that I may know Thy testimonies" (Psalm 119:125). "If thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding.... then shall thou understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God. For the Lord giveth wisdom: out of His mouth cometh knowledge and understanding" (Proverbs 2:3,5).

Lord, You see the work at hand
And what Your servants need.
Help me, therefore, understand
And follow where You lead.

Lord, I'm lifting up my voice
For truth and understanding.
I am committed to the choice
To do as You're commanding.

Lord, I am Your servant too
With those who do Your will.
I've made my choice to follow You,
And You uphold me still.

Lord, I know that for each task
There is wisdom You impart,
And therefore I will daily ask
For an understanding heart.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Better Business

"And He said unto them, How is it that ye sought Me? Wist ye not that I must be about My Father's business?" (Luke 2:49).

Our Savior who questioned the anxious concern
Of those who did not understand,
Might question us also, so slow to discern
The business of God now at hand.

For did we not know that His business today
Continues in those He would save?
And did we not know that He wants us to pray,
Fulfilling our mission He gave?

May we be about His business above
That labors in every nation:
To show to the world His marvelous love,
Extending His wondrous salvation!