Bits and Pieces – 101st Edition – February 13, 2022
PRAY FOR CANADA
We can echo the words of Deuteronomy 1:25 when referring to Canada, “It is a good land which the Lord our God doth give us.” The problem is that politically the country is in the control of ungodly men. The Bible teaches that “When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn” [Proverbs 29:2].
The people would rejoice to be governed by godly men and women who put piety before politics and formulate laws according to the righteous laws of God. Our government seems to pay scant attention to the Lord, His law, and His Word. Indeed, it goes in the opposite direction, passing laws that are the very antithesis of the holy law of God.
They enact laws on marijuana use abominable lifestyles and permit the murder of thousands of unborn children. Canada is in a moral mess. The Free Presbyterian churches in Canada are planning a national time of prayer for the nation today at 4.00 pm. It will be on Zoom, and the link should have been sent to you already. Please join us today.
DELIVERANCE FROM DEPRESSION
Have you ever found yourself swimming against a strong tide of depression? Few amongst us have not been cast down even in the midst of Christian activity.
We have some indication of Abram’s distress by the word that the Lord had for him; “Fear not, Abram” [Genesis 15:1]. How strange it seems for a man who has just enjoyed a great victory in the face of formidable opposition. He had overcome the four kings, rescued his nephew, and experienced a memorable meeting with Melchizedek. Surely he was on the crest of a wave! Is it not a dangerous time? Elijah found it so after the victory of Carmel when he fled from the wicked Jezebel.
Perhaps Abram was overwhelmed by a sense of disappointment. He had expended considerable effort and risk to release his beloved nephew, but instead of learning his lesson, Lot, it appears, had simply returned to the iniquitous society of Sodom. Had it all been in vain?
Whatever his fears, how appropriate is the Word of the Lord! “I am thy shield.” It is not the “don’t worry” of well-meaning friends. God did not attempt to reason with Abram, but He gave him good grounds for not being afraid: he had the protection of the Almighty! God, Himself is the shield! With such a promise, the believer can be assured that “no weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper” [Isa 54:17].
[Rev. Timothy Nelson in Footprints of Faith]
LIVING IN GOD’S WILL
The Spirit of God often leads His people in a positive sense with clear directions where to go and what to do. But sometimes He leads negatively, forbidding us to take some step we feel justified in taking. Paul was busy preaching in Phrygia and Galatia with great success.
It seemed natural for him to continue to Bithynia and reap a Gospel harvest there. There was just one problem. God did not want Paul there at that time, so “the Spirit suffered him not” [Acts 16:7]. There was for Paul a Macedonian call ahead, so he obeyed the Spirit’s prompting to bypass Bithynia and head for Macedonia.
The Christian ought always to move in the will of God. But determining that will is not always easy. Therefore our ears must be tuned to hear the voice of God as He gives His commands to us. He reveals Himself today, not in visions and audible voices, but in His Word. The Holy Spirit is the Author of the Word, and His will for us will be found there.
Personal feelings about what we think should be done ought to be confirmed by God’s Word. If God closes a door, we would be foolish to try to batter it down. And if God opens a door, we would be foolish not to enter.
Do not be disappointed if God closes the door to some cherished plan. He knows best, and just around the corner, you will see far better. Bithynia was closed to Paul, but Philippi, Thessalonica, and Corinth were opened, and these cities alone led to five of Paul’s epistles.
THE MISCHIEVOUS MOUSE
At the Watchnight service thirty years ago, 160 participants were thrown into a commotion during a Bible quiz when a mouse ran through the midst of the packed congregation. The poor mouse panicked, as did the people. Two young ladies climbed onto a chair. One man was jumping up and down. He thought the mouse would run up his leg! Pandemonium reigned until the mouse escaped into the caretaker’s room.