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Good Words 1860
Good Words for Every Day of the Year


April 6.

"I, even I, am He that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins."—Isa. xliii. 25.
" Who His own self bare our sins in His own body on the tree."—1 Pet. ii. 24.

Let us look at that "tree"—at the cross of Christ, our tree of life—if we would see how it is that for His "own sake" He blotteth out the transgressions of His people. On that tree He himself "bare our sins," and God accepted the offering; and in this wonderful way, which angels desire to look into, God is "just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus." These words of Isaiah in the ancient dispensation speak of a forgiveness only to be fully revealed in the coming of Christ; yet how strong and how clear is the promise ! It tells of a blotting-out of sin that is even more than forgiveness ; it speaks of one who knows all—even more than we in our most self-accusing moments know—yet one who '' will not remember" our sins! And, to convince us, He has given not His word only, but the pledge of the cross of His own dear Son! Can we look at this greatest of all miracles—the miracle of Love hanging for our sakes upon the tree—and yet remain indifferent to the love of Jesus, regardless of the evil of sin?

"He died to bear the guilt of men,
That, sin might be forgiven;
He lives to bless them and defend,
And plead their cause in heaven."

April 7.

"They rested the sabbath-day, according to the commandment."—Luke xxiii. 56.

What a wonderful Sabbath-day was that! The world knew not how wonderful it was, and the men of the world, whether Jews or Romans, went on their ways as usual, regardless that all this day the Lord of life lay sleeping the sleep of death in Joseph's sepulchre ! It was a day full of mystery to angels in heaven. How strange it must have seemed to them, that they had not been summoned to come with all their bright legions to aid their Lord and Master before He was brought so low! Things like these "the angels desire to look into." To the spirits of darkness it must have seemed a day of triumph; yet the devil must have known that his time was short, and that his seeming victory was to be his great fall. To the infant Church gathered in the upper chamber this must have been a day of inexpressible desolation; but how often is the darkest hour the nearest to the dawn! They rested through that long, sad Sabbath, and Jesus rested/ His bitter hour was past; pain and agony, and sorrow and sighing were over for Him now. The cup that His Father had given Him He had drunk to the dregs; and now He lay low, low in His humiliation for us, waiting His hour of exaltation —an exaltation which was also for us!

"For thee He died; for thee He lives again;
O'er thee He watches in His boundless reign."

April 8.

"The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre."—John xx. 1.

It was dark in the early dawn of that spring morning, and oh how dark in the stricken heart of Mary as she drew near to that sepulchre! Her sun had gone down there, as she thought, for ever; little did she know how gloriously He had already risen from the tomb. Let us go with her in spirit, and see the place where Jesus lay. The narrow bed, hallowed by Him, becomes no longer a terror to His people ; for His resurrection, which rolled the stone from the sepulchre, shall in due time open every sepulchre in this our world, so full of sepulchres, and they who are His own shall arise to meet Him in His glory above. Let us look at the place where Jesus lay, that we may there lay down our old natures and rise with Him in newness of life; in that sepulchre may we lay our vanity and pride, our earthly minds and our corrupt affections, our doubts and unbelieving fears, and may we, through His grace, arise filled with His Spirit! O Lord, grant us the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, that we may know '' the power of His resurrection!"

"Break through my bonds, whate'er it cost,
What is not Thine within me slay,
Give me the lot I covet most,
To rise as Thou hast risen to-day.
I nought can do; a slave to death I pine,
Work Thou in me, O Power and life Divine!"

April 9.

"Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him ; and he shall bring it to pass."—Ps. xxxvii. 5.

"What a marvellous privilege is this, that we are permitted and commanded to bring our concerns before the Lord, however small they may be; and that in so doing we are encouraged to trust in Him, and expect that He will bring to pass the matter in which we are engaged. But perhaps our "way" may not be according to His plan and purpose for us. What then? It seems to me, that if we ask for guidance as well as success, we need not doubt that He will grant it, and I think that a Christian would shrink from asking the one without the other. When we "commit our way to the Lord," we ask Him to shew us what He would have us to do, we leave it to His wisdom to direct us; and having placed ourselves and our way in our Father's hand, it is sweet indeed to trust in Him, and feel sure that He will bring it to pass. We must first seek His guidance, and submit ourselves to it, and then we shall find peace in the exercise of faith in His promise. The Lord will shew us His way, and enable us cheerfully to adopt it as our own. We are not to look for signs and wonders, but we are to exercise in all humility the judgment He has given us, and we shall find our judgment strengthened and enlightened by having been brought to Him for direction.

"Lead, Saviour, lead, amid the circling gloom,
Lead Thou me on,
The night is dark, and I am far from home,
Lead Thou me on.
Choose Thou my path,—I do not ask to see
The distant scene, one step enough for me!"

April 10.

"When I awake, I am still with Thee."—Ps. cxxxix. 18.

How wonderful is the feeling of His presence, His nearness, who fills heaven and earth, and sustains the universe, and yet condescends to be my God! " I will both lay me down in peace and sleep; for thou, Lord, only makest me to dwell in safety." When I awake in the stillness of the night, "I am still with Thee" and Thou art with me, O Thou watcher of Israel, who neither slumberest nor sleepest. Thus it is now, and thus will it be when awaking into eternity, after passing out of time. For neither death nor life can for a moment separate us from Him. Thus, too, will it be at the dawning of that solemn day of which every morning's awaking is a type. Little, indeed, can we know, or even conceive, of the great realities which will then be revealed. We know not what we shall be : nor how those bodies shall be raised incorruptible. We look through a glass darkly towards that great future, yet we may cling to this one thought, "When we awake, we shall still be with Thee!" With Jesus, who died for us; with Him who has loved us with an everlasting love, and saved us with His own blood; with our God, who has led us all through this great and terrible wilderness, and who will never leave nor forsake even the very least of His own redeemed children who put their trust in Him, but will be their portion now and for evermore. "When we awake, we shall be satisfied with Thy likeness."

"When I rise to worlds unknown,
See Thee on Thy judgment-throne,
Pock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee!"

April 11.

"Remember me with the favour that Thou bearest unto Thy people; O visit me with Thy salvation."—Pa. cvi. 4.

Many pray this prayer with no clearer ideas of all that it implies than Balaam had when he cried, "Let me die the death of the righteous, and let my last end be like his," never meaning all the while to live the life of the righteous! Not such was the spirit of the Psalmist; and, oh, may I as fervently partake of the favour the Lord bears to His people as David here did! May I have faith to perceive the excellence of the portion of the righteous, though it may be one of suffering and trial, as far as this world is concerned. They are the children of a King, and He provides for them royally; but those who neither know their Father nor them, are ready to count them fools for Christ's sake. May I seek to share the children's bread, believing that no mere earthly portion can supply the wants of my soul, and that no favour of man is of such value as the favour of God! May I receive all the dealings and discipline of my heavenly Father as coming from His hand for my good; and, oh, may He so visit me with His salvation, that I may bring forth "much fruit" to His glory!

"Well may Thine own beloved, who see
In all their lot their Father's pleasure,
Bear loss of all they love, save Thee,
Their living, everlasting treasure!"


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