Thoughts From J.C. Philpot
Unless the trumpet give a certain sound, who is to prepare himself for the battle?
I want no new doctrines, nor any new religion, as I want no fresh Bible and no new Lord; all I want is to live more daily in the sweet enjoyment of them, and to manifest more of their power in heart, lip and life.
We are no longer young. Life is, as it were, slipping from under our feet, and therefore I desire to spend the rest of my days, be they few or many, in serving the Lord, walking in His fear, enjoying His presence, preaching His gospel, contending for His truth and living to His glory.
It is a poor life to live to sin, self and the world, but it is a blessed life to live unto the Lord. I only wish that I could do so more and more, but I have to find that the good I would I do not, and the evil I would not that I do.
How soon we sink down into carnality and death, and like a rower plying against the stream, at once fall down with the current when we cease to ply our oars. These oars are prayer, reading, meditation and heart examination, and without them too soon we slip away from the harbour to which we hope we are bending our course.
And yet we daily find that we cannot use these oars to purpose except the Lord be pleased to put strength into us. We may indeed attempt to use them, and should not cease to do so. But alas, of how little avail are they unless He who teaches the hands to war and the fingers to fight, teach us also their use, and give us power to use them in His strength, not our own.
I am not one bit stronger in myself with all my long profession and, I hope, possession of the life of God; but on the contrary, have a more sensible feeling of my weakness, sinfulness and helplessness than ever I had before. At the same time I hope I have learned more deeply and thoroughly whence all my strength, wisdom, righteousness and sanctification are to come, and thus to look more to the Lord and less to self.
May our lot, living and dying, be with the saints of God whom He has redeemed with the precious blood of His dear Son, whom He has called and quickened by His grace, and to whom He has made known the blessed mysteries of His kingdom as set up in the heart by the power of the Holy Ghost.
Time and life are fast passing away with us, but we hope that through distinguishing grace we have not lived altogether to sin and self, but have endeavoured, very weakly, indeed, and imperfectly, yet in the main sincerely, to serve God in our day and generation, to seek the good of His people, to be blessed and be made a blessing.
To live a life of faith upon the Son of God is indeed a blessing beyond all price, and such a life here will prepare for a life of eternal and unalloyed enjoyment hereafter.
But though we thus seem to get sick of earth, sin and self, yet we feel the need of divine communications of life, light, liberty and love to raise up the heart and draw the affections heavenward.
Hunger is not food, weariness not rest, and sickness not cure. How we need the blessed Lord to appear for us and in us, that we may find in Him that rest and peace, that happiness and consolation, which none but He can bestow.
It is an inestimable mercy when in the absence of suspension of mental energy, the soul can quietly and softly repose on the bosom of mercy. And indeed, this is one of the choicest blessings of the covenant of grace, that it gives rest and peace, quietness and stillness in the assurance that the work of Christ is a finished work, that nothing remains to be done, and that all is secured in the Person of the Son of God, in whom the Father is ever well pleased.
May our desire and delight be to exalt Thy worthy name; for Thou art our All in all!
All divine truth is in Jesus, comes from Him and leads to Him. He is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.