PRAISE IN EVERY PART
An old saint of God prayed the following at a prayer meeting, ‘Oh, Lord, we will praise thee with an instrument of ten strings.” [Psalm 144:9]. Those present in the meeting wondered what the ten strings were. but they soon discovered them as the brother continued in prayer.
“We shall praise Thee with our eyes by looking only unto Thee. We shall praise Thee with our ears by listening only to Thy voice. We shall praise Thee with our hands by working in Thy service. We shall praise Thee with our feet by running in the way of Thy commandments. We shall praise Thee with our tongue by bearing testimony to Thy loving-kindness. We shall praise Thee with our heart by loving only Thee. An instrument of ten strings, Lord. Keep the instrument in tune. Lord, play upon it. Ring out the melodies of music. Keep it in harmony. Make it speak out Thy Glory – an instrument of ten strings. Two eyes, two ears, two hands, two feet, one tongue, and one heart.” [From S. Barnes].
THE DIVINE WEAVER
My life is but a weaving
Between my Lord and me,
I cannot choose the colours,
He worketh steadily.
Oftimes He weaveth sorrow,
And I in foolish pride,
Forget He sees the upper,
But I the under side.
Not till the loom is silent,
And the shuttles cease to fly,
Shall God unroll the canvas,
And explain the reason why.
The dark threads are as needful,
In the Weaver’s skilful hand,
As the threads of gold and silver
In the pattern, He has planned.
THE GROUNDS OF HUMAN MORALITY
Upon what grounds should human morality be built? On community values as we often hear? Hardly. Canada is a diverse mixture of ethnic cultures, and some of those have very different views of morality based on their cultures. For example, having multiple wives, and divergent views of sexual purity.
In the community of the world, there is no clearly defined universal code of human behaviour. Thank God, He in His wisdom has given the best code of ethics and moral behaviour in His Word, the Bible.
The Bible is not an ordinary book but is God’s Divine instruction book for the peoples of this earth. But nations and individuals tend to discount it. What is wrong, we wonder, with God’s law?
The first four commandments deal with man’s duty to God. The last six focus on our duty to each other. Is there anything wrong with commanding us to honour our parents? Or refusing to kill? Or to oppose adultery, theft. and lying? Or of not being covetous which is the root of much evil?
Surely, these are virtues that would be a boon to any nation. They are reliable virtues for all people. The vast majority of Canadians are, at least, nominally Christian. God’s law is good both for individuals and nations.
MORE HINTS FOR BIBLE TEACHERS
Realize that teaching without the power of the Holy Spirit is vain. The power of the Spirit is not necessarily manifested through a loud voice, or a quiet or dramatic one. The Lord used James and John, “sons of thunder,” [Mark 3:17] just as He used Barnabas who was a “son of consolation” [Acts 4:36].
Study the proper use of English grammar. To say ‘I have did’ in a message is as much a put-off as a serious spelling mistake is to a reader of a letter. Their impression of your effort will take a sudden nose-dive.
Paul told young Timothy to “give attendance to reading.” That was good advice. Primary reading must be the Bible and Bible helps. But a preacher must know what is happening in the world so he can apply the messages of God’s Word to meet the needs of the people on the ground.
CONSIDER THE ANT Proverbs 6:6
Ants are hard workers, the very picture of industry. We speak of being “busy as a bee.” Perhaps we should add “active as an ant.”
The Lord expressly instructs us to “go to the ant, thou sluggard [Proverbs 6:6]. The word “sluggard” comes from another creature – the slug. In comparison to the ant, the slug is a slow-moving destructive pest in the garden. The most beautiful cabbage or lettuce is quickly ruined by the slug’s voracious appetite
The lesson is clear. We can be active as the ant, or slothful as the slug. God expects us to be industrious, with each person playing his part in providing for his family. “If any would not work, neither should he eat” [2 Thess.]