“Brethren, rest assured that in proportion as we are fully persuaded of God’s love to us, we shall be affected with love to him. Do not let the devil tempt you to believe that God does not love You because your love is feeble; for if he can in any way weaken your belief in God’s love to you, he cuts off or diminishes the flow of the streams which feed the sacred grace of love to God. If I lament that I do not love God as I ought, that is a holy regret; but if I, therefore, conclude that God’s love to me is the less because of this, I deny the light because my eye is dim, and I deprive myself also of the power to increase in love. Let me rather think more and more of the greatness of God’s love to me, as I see more and more my unworthiness of it; the more a sinner I am, let me the more fully see how great must be that love which embraces such a sinner as I am; and then, as I receive a deeper sense of the divine mercy, I shall feel the more bound to gratitude and constrained to affection. O for a great wave of love, to carry us right out into the ocean of love.”
“Let the soul obey God, let it be holy, pure, gracious, then is it happy, and truly living; but a soul sundered from God is a soul blasted, killed, destroyed; it exists in a dreadful death; all its true peace, dignity, and glory, are gone; it is a hideous ruin, the mere corpse of manhood. The new life brings us near to God, makes us think of him, makes us love him, and ultimately makes us like him. My brethren, it is in proportion as you get near to God that you enter into the full enjoyment of life — that life which Jesus Christ gives you, and which Jesus Christ preserves in you.”
“There is plenty for you to do for your Lord to show your love to Him, and to glorify His name. But you cannot add to the foundation of your confidence, nor should you dream of doing so. How could you improve what your Lord declares to be finished? Is not His work all-sufficient? Do you want to move the foundation? Does it not stand fast forever? Lean on it steadily and let this be your chief concern. O poor fainting believer, the more you can lean upon Jesus the better He will be pleased. ‘Lean hard,’ He cries, ‘and prove your love to Me.’ Trust Jesus for everything and trust Him at all times. Trust Him in life, in death and to eternity, and you shall not be ashamed or confounded, world without end.”
“Ah! Poor sinner, what do you say? Are you offended with the cross? No, you are not, for it is there that you wish to lose your sins. Do you desire this moment to come to Christ? You say, ‘I have no offense against Christ. Oh, that I knew where I might find Him! I would come even, to His seat.’ Well, if you want Christ, Christ wants you; if you desire Christ, Christ desires you. Yes, more; if you have one spark of desire after Christ, Christ has a whole burning mountain of desire after you. He loves you more than you can ever love Him. Rest assured that you are not first with God. If you are seeking Jesus, He has first sought you. Come, then, you destitute, weary, lost, helpless, ruined, chief of sinners; come, put your trust in His blood and His perfect righteousness, and you will go on your way rejoicing in Christ, set free from sin, delivered from iniquity, rendered as safe, though not as happy, as the very angels that now sing high hosannas before the throne of the Most High!”
“For I am not yet called to die; yet my experience and observation of others lead me to believe that very remarkable grace is often given to believers in their last hours. I have seen the timid become more strong than the brave, I have seen the retiring become more bold than the courageous; and I have known some, who seemed to be almost dumb before, speak with matchless utterance; and some, whose faces have been lit up with supernatural joy who before appeared to be amongst the doubting and the trembling ones of Christ’s family. There are choice revelations, special manifestations, nearer approaches to Christ, wider outlets of love from him, and greater inlets into the soul of the brightness of his presence, in those times, than ever before. When the body is strong, it often seems like a thick wall that shuts out the light; but when disease comes and shakes the tenement, it makes great rifts in wall and roof, and through those rifts the light comes streaming in as it had never come in before. I never can doubt the truth of our holy faith, or the reality of religion, after what I have witnessed at the deathbeds of the Lord’s people.”
“Moreover, simple faith is always the work of the Spirit. No man did ever believe in Jesus Christ for righteousness, except the Spirit of God led him to it. He can never be brought to it, except the Holy Ghost shall lead him fliers. Faith is as much the gift of God as Jesus Christ himself. Nature never did produce a grain of saving faith, and it never will. When a man has believed, he obtains a great increase to his faith in Jesus by the work of the Spirit. The Spirit never takes a man off from Jesus Christ as he grows in grace, but it establishes him in his confidence in the righteousness of Christ. The witness of the Spirit in us is a testimony to the faith that Jesus is the propitiation for sin. He never leads us to rest upon the work within, but points us still to Jesus. When he works in us mightily our faith becomes even more simple and childlike; we sink in our own esteem, and rise higher in confidence in Jesus.”
O for a closer walk with God,
A calm and heavenly frame,
A light to shine upon the road
That leads me to the Lamb!
Where is the blessedness I knew,
When first I saw the Lord?
Where is the soul refreshing view
Of Jesus, and His Word?
What peaceful hours I once enjoyed!
How sweet their memory still!
But they have left an aching void
The world can never fill.
Return, O holy Dove, return,
Sweet messenger of rest;
I hate the sins that made Thee mourn
And drove Thee from my breast.
The dearest idol I have known,
Whate’er that idol be
Help me to tear it from Thy throne,
And worship only Thee.
So shall my walk be close with God,
Calm and serene my frame;
So purer light shall mark the road
That leads me to the Lamb.