Search just our sites by using our customised search engine

Unique Cottages | Electric Scotland's Classified Directory

Click here to get a Printer Friendly PageSmiley

The Home Preacher
Or Church in the House - Week 33

Rev. Dr.  Thomas Binney


OUR Father who art in heaven, from whom cometh every good and every perfect gift, we beseech Thee to grant unto us that gift which includes all others--even that Holy Spirit which Thou hast promised to give unto them that ask Thee; to lead them into the light, to make their hearts soft by contrition, to sanctify them wholly, and to fill them with that peace which passeth all understanding. May we enjoy the renewing of the inward man, day by day; that, growing up into Christ in all things, our light may so shine before men, that they may glorify our Father who is in heaven. Amen.

HYMN, or Psalm, xcii. 1-4.

LOVING kindness every morning,
Faithful shelter every night,
Light and peace life’s path adorning
Helpful guidance strong and right;
Ever to us, poor and needy,
God his tender mercy shows,
And with care, precise and speedy,
All-sufficient grace bestows.

Trust to him, then, all your sorrows,
Wait upon his blessed will;
Leave to him the sad to-morrows,
And to-day’s demands fulfil.
Rest upon him, never fearing;
Christ thy Saviour lives to bless,
And our need, his love endearing,
But exalts our happiness.


AND the Lord spake unto Moses that self-same day, saying,

49. Get thee up into this mountain Abarim, unto mount Nebo, which is in the land of Moab, that is over against Jericho, and behold the land of Canaan, which I give unto the children of Israel for a possession; 50. And die in the mount whither thou goest up, and be gathered unto thy people; as Aaron thy brother died in mount Hor, and was gathered unto his people: 51. Because ye trespassed against me among the children of Israel at the waters of Meribah-Kadesh, in the wilderness of sin; because ye sanctified me not in the midst of the children of Israel. 52. Yet thou shalt see the land before thee; but thou shalt not go thither unto the land which I give the children of Israel.


AND Moses went up from the plains of Moab unto the mountain of Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, that is over against Jericho; and the Lord shewed him all the land of Gilead, unto Dan. 2. And all Naphtali, and the land of Ephraim, and Manaseh, and all the land of Judah, unto the utmost sea, 3. And the south, and the plain of the valley of Jericho, the city of palm-trees, unto Zoar. 4. And the Lord said unto him, This is the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, saying, I will give it unto thy seed: I have caused thee to see it with thine eyes, but thou shalt not go over thither. 5. So Moses, the servant of the Lord, died there, in the land of Moab, according to the word of the Lord, &c.



ALMIGHTY and most merciful God, in whom we live and move and have our being, in whose hand our breath is, and whose are all our ways; we desire to bless Thee for the repose of the past night, and to acknowledge Thy goodness in the gift of a new day. We laid ourselves down and slept; we have arisen because Thou makest us to dwell in safety. Our voice shalt Thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will we direct our prayer unto Thee, and will look up. This is the day which the Lord hath made, we will rejoice and be glad in it. Glory be to Thee for the holy and blessed memories of the day. On the first day of the week our Lord Jesus Christ, having died for our sins, rose from the dead, and brought life and immortality to light. Having overcome the sharpness of death, He opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers. He ascended up on high, entered within the vail, appears in Thy presence for us, and can save to the uttermost all that come unto Thee by Him. We desire to approach the footstool of Thy feet by that new and living way which He hath consecrated for us by His most precious blood; that, accepted in the Beloved, we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help us in every time of need. May we be in the Spirit on the Lord’s day. May we enter into thy house in the multitude of Thy mercies, and so may we worship towards Thy holy temple. We are not worthy of this great privilege, for we have been disobedient and rebellious, and have grieved and offended Thy good and holy Spirit. But, acknowledging our manifold sins and iniquities, casting ourselves on Thy fatherly compassion, pleading the blood which cleanseth from all sin, and supplicating the help of Thy grace, we would look up to the place where thine honour dwelleth, feeling that Thy glory need not make us afraid. Proceeding from penitent and contrite hearts, may our prayer be set forth before Thee as incense; may the lifting up of our hands be as the morning and evening sacrifice of old. Grant unto each of us the blessedness of the man whose transgression is forgiven, and whose sin is covered. Strengthen within us every holy purpose, exalt and purify our desires and affections. May we this day be led into the green pastures and by the still waters, that our souls may be fed, and solaced, and refreshed. May we wait upon Thee without distraction; may the lessons of Holy Scripture come to us, not in word only, but in power; may prayer and song be acceptable to Thee, and strengthening to ourselves; and may the instructions of the preacher, accompanied by Thy rich and effectual blessing, prove to us stimulating, edifying and consolatory, and be productive of impressions on the conscience and the heart, which shall not be without practical results. We pray for all worshiping assemblies, commending to Thee the household of faith spread throughout all the world. Grace be with all humble and holy souls, who worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. May every member of this family, and all with whom we are connected by the ties of nature, or any of the relationships which connect man with man, share in the blessings of Thy church and kingdom, and so live, this and every day, as to be prepared for the inheritance of the saints in light. May we, and all whom we love, find a place at last in the general assembly and church of the first-born, and be permitted to share in the holy satisfactions and to take part in the pure and perfect worship, of the upper world. These and all other mercies we humbly beg in the name and for the sake of the Lord Jesus, to whom with Thee, O Father, and the Holy Ghost, be glory and honour, dominion and praise, world without end. Amen.



MERCIFUL God, who, in compassion to our ignorance and weakness, hast given unto us Thy holy word to be a light unto our feet and a lamp unto our path; we desire to bless Thee for its fulness and variety, its revelations of spiritual truth, its records of the experience of Thy saints of old, their penitential utterances, their expressions of hope and trust, their prayers and songs -- so that, learning, like them, to walk with Thee we may finally be brought to sit down with them in Thy heavenly kingdom. Grant, we beseech Thee, O Lord, that this great object for which all Holy Scripture was written, maybe fully realized in us, through the power of Thy Spirit accompanying the word; and this we ask in the name and for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

HYMN, or Psalm xxxvi 5-9.

ETERNAL Light! Eternal Light,
How pure the soul must be,
When, placed within thy searching sight,
It shrinks not, but with calm delight
Can live, and look on Thee!

The spirits that surround thy throne,
May bear the burning bliss;
But that is surely theirs alone,
Since they have never, never, known
A fallen world like this.

O! how shall I, whose native sphere
Is dark, whose mind is dim,
Before the Ineffable appear
And on my naked spirit bear
That uncreated beam?

There is a way for man to rise
To that sublime abode;
An offering and a sacrifice,
A Holy Spirit’s energies,
An Advocate with God:

These, these prepare us for the sight
Of Holiness above:
The sons of ignorance and night
May dwell in the eternal Light,
Through the eternal Love!

LUKE IX. 28-36.

AND it came to pass about an eight days after these sayings, he took Peter, and John, and James, and went up into a mountain to pray. 29. And as he prayed, the fashion of his countenance was altered, and his raiment was white and glistering. 30. And, behold, there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias: 31. Who appeared in glory, and spake of his decease which he should accomplish at Jerusalem. 32. But Peter and they that were with him were heavy with sleep;: and when they were awake, they saw his glory, and the two men that stood with him. 33. And it came to pass, as they departed from him, Peter said unto Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here: and let us make three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias: not knowing what he said. 34. While he thus spake, there came a cloud and overshadowed them; and they feared as they entered into the cloud. 35. And there came a voice out of the cloud, saying This is my beloved Son; hear him. 36. And when the voice was past, Jesus was found alone. And they kept it close, and told no man in those days any of those things which they had seen.

2 Peter I. 16-18.

FOR we have not followed cunningly-devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eye-witnesses of his majesty. 17. For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. 18. And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.


-- Matt. xxvi. 36-38.

THE sufferings of Christ are as prominent an object in the New Testament, as anything concerning him. He is as much spoken of for what he suffered, as for what he did; as much remembered for what he endured, as for what he taught. He was “a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief.” Grief and he, if we may so speak, walked together as intimate associates, were united as inseparable friends. They were acquainted, not merely by “the hearing of the ear,” or as by a casual glance and distant recognition--a short and hasty interview, and, anon, separation and departure; there was close and constant intimacy--an intimacy that grew closer and closer, till the one, as it were merged in the other; till Jesus in a manner disappeared, being entirely hidden and overshadowed by grief. His self-possession seemed to forsake him, his calm greatness to be obscured and eclipsed. He, who had required of others so often and so strongly that they should bear the cross lay, when his own was in sight, prostrate on the earth -- convulsed, alarmed, and in tears -- utterly overwhelmed by his feelings, in a manner and to an extent that, at first sight, excites thoughts which it is hardly proper to express; as if what is recorded appeared to involve something that was pusillanimous, abject, and unworthy of himself.

The three great scenes in the life of the Lord, on which an earnest and thoughtful man will often dwell, are the wilderness, the Mount, and the Garden -- in other words, the temptation, the transfiguration, and the agony in Gethsemane. The cross, indeed, comes after all, and concludes all; but that, properly understood, is included in the last. It is the close and the consummation of what begins in Gethsemane; in this respect, Calvary is but the continuance, or the summit, of the Mount of Olives.

The temptations of the wilderness strengthened and prepared the Christ for action. He came forth from the successful conflict “in the power of the Spirit,” and so spake and so acted that all men marvelled. Then, his glorious interview and familiar converse with Moses and Elias, the divine effulgence of the bright cloud, and the remembered tones of the paternal voice, cheered his spirit in the prospect of the “decease which he was to accomplish at Jerusalem.” He came down from the place of vision, and instantly set himself to proceed thither. Thither he came; and on the night on which he was betrayed, knowing that his hour was come, and that the things concerning him had an end, he went, as he was wont, to the Mount of Olives -- to a garden, whither he was accustomed to resort for converse and prayer with his disciples. To this sacred place, this favourite retreat, he came once more. The twelve were with him -- all but one, and that one “knew the place,” and was expected soon to be there too, though in company with such as would disturb its serenity and pollute its sacredness. The greater number of those who accompanied him Jesus left by themselves. Taking with him, into a more retired part of the garden, Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, James and John, “he began to be sorrowful and very heavy.” Then commenced that mysterious eclipse of his holy, calm, and divine soul, which three out the four evangelists have described. This we propose to make the subject of our present meditation. In venturing to approach it, we desire and pray that we may be enabled to do so with that humility, reverence, and awe, which are so necessary when treading upon a spot so holy, and gazing upon a spectacle so mysterious. May we feel, where it may be impossible to reason; and adore, where we cannot comprehend.

I. The first thing to which we direct attention is the intense severity of the suffering, which now overwhelmed and oppressed the mind of Christ.

In noticing the indications of this, and indeed, in our remarks on the whole subject, we shall not confine ourselves to what is stated by any one of the evangelists, but shall collect and combine what is most observable in their separate accounts. These separate accounts are in perfect keeping and harmony with each other; at the same time, words and expressions are varied by the different writers, and some incidents and circumstances noticed by one that the others omit, only showing that that while they agree in substance because they describe a real occurrence, they are distinguished by that diversity of manner that proves them to have borne distinct and independent testimonies. The extreme intenseness and severity of Christ’s sufferings in the garden are indicated by several circumstances.

In the first place, it appears, that as soon as he had retired with the three disciples who were permitted to be near him, the internal conflict commenced, and a sudden change took place in his appearance. Matthew says, that “he began to be sorrowful and very heavy;” and Mark, varying the expression, uses, instead of the word “sorrowful,” the phrase “sore amazed” -- “he was sore amazed and very heavy.” The original terms are all singularly forcible; they are very inadequately rendered in our authorized version, and indeed hardly admit of being represented by any single words in our language. They imply, that he was utterly overwhelmed by irresistible dejection and anguish of mind; that he was struck through, as it were, by the most piercing and bitter sorrow; that he was astounded and alarmed, as if taken by surprise; astonished at the magnitude of the trial, and wondering at his own weakness before it. There was a complete prostration of the bodily powers -- a suspension or deprivation, so to speak, of nervous energy. He was “very heavy.” Both Matthew and Mark record this. “Very heavy;” that is, he was so oppressed that it seemed to stupify him: he appeared as if incapable of rousing or exerting his faculties or his faith; he was stunned as by a blow. His internal strength seemed to fail and forsake him, and he appeared in danger of passively yielding to the onset of sorrow, as if it were hopeless to bear up against it.

The next particular that shows the severity of his suffering, is the language in which he himself describes it: “My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death.” “Exceeding sorrowful” -- the word signifies to be entirely surrounded by sorrow -- for grief to be pressing on the spirit on all sides, as the atmosphere presses on the body, or water on an object when immersed. Exceeding sorrowful, “even unto death.” It seemed to him -- if I durst so to express it -- it seemed to him as if his soul must die; as if his spirit was enduring a mortal pang; or, at least, as if the grief that consumed it must speedily terminate his bodily life. The distressing state of mental and physical exhaustion -- of utter helplessness, and, at first, of apparent self-abandonment, -- to which Christ was reduced, is depicted very forcibly in some of the psalms in which Messiah is undoubtedly the speaker. “I am a worm, and no man;” “I am poured out like water:” “My heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels:” My strength is dried up: Thou hast brought me into the dust of death:” “I am consumed by the blow of thine hand.”

The next circumstance by which the crushing and agonizing nature of the Lord’s sufferings is indicated, may be seen, I think, in his earnest appeal to his three friends -- “Tarry ye here, and watch with me.” These words, in one aspect at least in which they may be viewed seem to betray an anxiety not to be left alone -- a sort of painful, restless dread lest the disciples should depart, or that he should not be able to find them, and fall back upon their sympathy, when he returned from the spot to which he was about to retire. And here, as appropriately as anywhere else, I may make the remark, that it is especially behoves us, in thinking and speaking of the sufferings of Messiah, to remember his humanity. The humanity of Christ is as much a truth, perhaps as great a truth, as his divinity. While, in some mysterious manner, the Messiah was “God manifest in the flesh,” he was also truly and properly a man; he had a body and a soul, and was susceptible of the same pains and affections with ourselves. In fact, it was only his humanity that could suffer, and in that he was tried, in all points, even as we are; “learning obedience by the things that he suffered,” and “through suffering being made perfect.” His human affections, and the nature of his personal temperament as a man, seem to me to be indicated by the anxiety he expressed for his friends to tarry with him and watch. There are men so formed and constituted that they care nothing about, and feel no want of, the sympathy of others. They feel a strong personal independence, a sufficiency in themselves for anything they have to accomplish or endure; to which the company or concurrence of others can add nothing, and which even their opposition and ridicule cannot diminish. There are other men, more distinguished by tenderness than strength, whose susceptibilities are acute and keen, tenderly alive to insult or friendship, and by whom the sympathies of friendship are greatly valued as a frequent source of consolation and vigour. This latter class are not incapable of acting alone. They can accomplish unaided labours, and endure solitary suffering, but they cannot do either from natural and constitutional inflexibility; they need, in order to it, to feel laid upon them the stern and strong necessity of duty; to be constantly kept up by this; and even then, to be without the company and concurrence, deprived of the sympathy, or exposed to the opposition of others, is exquisitely painful. To this latter class Jesus, considered as a man, belonged. As a man, his natural susceptibilities and feelings were acute and tender. I think it likely that there was something of elaborate fineness and perfection about his bodily structure, that not only rendered it singularly sensible to pain, but gave increased intensity to the feelings of his exquisitely soft and loving spirit. It is intimated that he was keenly sensible to “shame” and insult; he felt “reproach;” and he cung to the society and sympathy of his friends; they were endeared to him by “continuing with him in his temptations;” he especially and anxiously wished them to be near when his sorrow was great upon him, and by this anxiety indicated its greatness. He knew, indeed, that the hour would come, and was very near, when they would be stricken and scattered, and would leave him alone; and though he felt he would still have the Father with him, so appalling were the first approaches of his agony, so fearful the alarm and agitation of his spirits, that he seemed to dread the solitary conflict, and besought the three to remain nigh: “Tarry ye here, and watch with me.”

The particulars next to be noticed, which further indicate the intenseness and severity of Christ’s anguish of mind, are those connected with his supplications -- the object, frequency and manner of his prayer. His earnest, impassioned, and repeated request to the Father was, that that hour might pass from him. He “offered up his supplications with strong crying and tears.” Again and again he returned to ask the same thing -- “if it were possible, that the cup might pass.” The strength and vigour of the principle of obedience were displayed, indeed, at the same time, by his breathing the sentiment of filial submission to the Father’s will, at the moment that he asked relief; but that relief he did ask, and asked it repeatedly, and asked it in a manner that showed the excruciating torture he endured. He kneeled down he fell on his face, he lay, as it were, helpless and prostrate on the ground; anon, he wrestled as in an “agony;” he appeared to be in deadly conflict with some strong and mighty antagonist. It was approaching midnight; the air was cool, and the damp and thick dew was falling to the earth and moistening all things; but Jesus in his agony was as one heated in battle; sweat covered him, and that of no common or ordinary kind; it was like great drops of blood -- perhaps it was blood; clots of gore fell from him to the ground; the anguish of his spirit thus making itself visible on the body.

In the last place, “there appeared an angel from heaven strengthening him.” But this shows to what a mysterious condition of weakness he was reduced. He needed to be strengthened, to be helped, perhaps, by the angel’s arm to rise and stand upon his feet, and to be animated and cheered by the angel’s suggestions, to admit the thoughts that would sustain his soul. Physically and mentally he was brought very low, and required to have his anguish assuaged, his courage recalled, and is frame supported, by one from heaven.

Putting together all the particulars that have thus been glanced at, it is impossible not to feel that we have set before us, in the Gethsemane-conflict of the Great Sufferer, and instance of mental distress, or soul-trouble, of the depth, magnitude, and intensity of which, it is utterly impossible for us adequately either to conceive or speak.

II. In the second place, it becomes us, with humility and awe, to inquire into the nature and source of this extraordinary distress and anguish of spirit, which so overpowered and prostrated the Son of God.

The suffering of Christ in Gethsemane was not bodily pain; physically, he was in health and vigour, at the prime of life, and in the flower of his age. The torture of the cross was before him, with all th preliminary accumulations of woe; but we cannot think that the mere apprehension of these will sufciently account for what he endured. His mind had long been familiar with the death that he was to die; and he knew, and had predicted, his speedy resurrection to a glorious life. Now, it seems impossible to imagine that an event, however painful, which was to be immediately succeeded by “fullness of joy,” could have thrown him into such mysterious agony of mind. In after times, martyrs, men and women, were called to suffer the most excruciating tortures, had to entertain the prospect, and undergo the infliction of death, in forms as lingering and dreadful as his, and which involved as great an aggregate of physical suffering; and they anticipated and endured it with cheerfulness, joy, magnanimity, rapture. If Jesus was merely a martyr for truth, and was about to seal his testimony with his blood, I would say it with reverence, but I would say it, that his example rather fails than otherwise at this point, and that his conduct was surpassed, in firmness and heroism, by other sufferers. These other sufferers, too, it is to be remembered, were on every supposition far inferior to him in character, not sustaining so glorious an office, nor anticipating so great a reward. Some other cause must certainly be found for Christ’s darkness and distress of mind, distinct from the mere apprehension of the cross.

The seat of his suffering was the soul. But then, it is again and again affirmed, that he was “holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinner;” that he was “without spot;” had no speck or stain of guilt upon his conscience, and could not be oppressed by any feeling of personal demerit. He had no frailty, no defect; he had never erred, in thought, word, or deed; he had no conscious deficiencies to oppress him, nothing to acknowledge and confess with shame, no necessity to pray for mercy, no iniquity to fill him with terror at the thought of God. In spite of this, however, “his soul was troubled,” was “exceeding sorrowful even unto death” -- overpowered and beset with bitter anguish.

I know of no principle on which this mental suffering of a perfectly innocent and holy being can be rationally accounted for, except that which refers it to the fact of his being a sacrificial and propitiatory victim. “He bare our griefs, and carried our sorrows.” “He was wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him.” “It pleased the Lord to bruise him and to put him to grief: Jehovah laid on him the iniquity of us all.” His mental sufferings were “the travail of his soul” --the pangs and throes through which a guilty and dead world might be reborn, and rise again to the life of God. “He suffered, the just for the unjust;” “he was made sin for us, who knew no sin;” “he redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us.” “By his stripes we are healed.”

The great doctrine of redemption by sacrifice--”God setting forth his Son as a propitiation through faith in his blood” -- appears to me to be passages of scripture. We are redeemed from the penalty and the power of sin “by the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.” It is quite possible, we think, to show, by very sufficient and satisfactory arguments, the consistency of the doctrine of atonement with right reason; and the necessity which there is, in the nature of things, and under the government of a holy God, for some positive ground for the exercise of mercy distinct from, and additional to, both the repentance of the sinner, and the paternal tenderness of the divine mind. That part of the subject, however, we entirely waive at present, and, taking the fact a we have stated it, that Christ suffered as a propitiatory victim, we ask, if any account can be given, on this ground, of the causes and the nature of this extraordinary mental agony and terror?

The scriptures, we think, seem to refer to three sources of this distress and anguish. There was some mysterious conflict with the great adversary of God and man, from whose tyranny he came to redeem us. When discomfited in temptation, the devil, it is said, “departed from him for a season”; and in Gethsemane seems to have returned. It was then, as Christ himself expressed it, “the hour of the power of darkness.” I know nothing of the mode of the tempter’s approach, or of the nature of the hellish suggestions by which he disturbed the serenity of Jesus; I do not pretend to understand the possibility even of the thing itself: but that it was, the scripture just quoted seems to assert. Here, then, is one source of mental conflict. The subtlety and malice of the devil, --the combined forces of the bottomless pit -- were brought against him, and in some way, impossible to be explained, overwhelmed him with darkness, discomposed his spirit, and alarmed his soul by infamous temptations. Then it is also said, that it “pleased the Father to bruise him, and to put him to grief;” that “Jehovah made his soul and offering for sin;” that he called for the sword, and awoke it against the Shepherd, and pierced and smote him. There was some mysterious infliction direct from the hand of God, some wonderful withdrawal of his countenance and complacency, or at least of their sensible manifestation; fire descended from heaven to consume the sacrifice. Again I add, I can explain nothing; I think the fact rests clearly upon scriptural statements, but I can go little beyond its simple assertion: that little, however, perhaps the next particular will lead us to suggest. It is said then, in the third place, that our iniquities were laid upon him, and that in some sense he bore the curse and penalty of transgression. I need hardly say, we reject the notion that he literally endured the punishment of sin. This would have been impossible, since that included actual remorse, and Christ could never feel that he was a sinner, though he was treated as if he were. Nor would it have consisted with the nature of the gospel and the display of mercy, since, the penalty literally exacted, mercy would be impossible, and the sinner might demand his release from justice. Still there was suffering in the mind of Christ, flowing into it from human guilt. His pure mind had such an apprehension of sin, such a view of all is vile and malignant properties -- its possible attributes and gigantic magnitude so rose and spread before him -- that he started as in amazement from the dreadful object, and trembled, and was terrified exceedingly. Sin was laid upon him, and it sank and crushed him, and, in some sense, its poison and bitterness entered into his soul. The conclusion to which I am led, I confess, is this -- that while, as I have said, I deem it impossible for Jesus to have endured that literal remorse which is the natural and direct punishment of sin, yet I do think, that his agony of mind was the nearest to this which it was possible for him to experience. He was so affected by the pressure of sin upon him on all sides, and agitation of a burdened conscience and a wounded spirit. His mind was in a tempest when his agony was at its height; it wrought upon his frame till his sweat was blood; the arrows of God seemed to have entered into his soul; he had all the appearance of a sinner stricken for his sins. I again repeat, that this could not literally be the case; I only say that it was the nearest to it that the Christ could feel, or God inflict; and I see not that there is any more mystery in something of this nature being felt, than in the fact of a perfectly pure and spotless being suffering at all.

III. The third and last thing to which we direct attention, is the conduct of Jesus under his mysterious trial.

He was “sorrowful,” “amazed,” and “very heavy,” but he roused himself to pray: the action of his mind so wrought on him, that he seemed suddenly deprived of strength, but he fell prostrate on the ground and prayed; again and again he prayed, increasing in fervour, earnestness, and importunity. He prayed, though disappointed in the support and sympathy of his friends. Instead of watching with him, seeking if possible to soothe his mind and to mourn an anguish they could not share -- instead of this, they gave way to fatigue and sleep; and though repeatedly roused by their Lord’s reproof -- administered much more in sorrow than in anger -- again they neglected his request and admonition, and left him “to tread the wine-press alone.” He prayed anxiously for the relief he sought, but always with submission to the Father’s will. He asked it, if it were possible; he pleaded for it on the ground, that with God all things were possible. Being in an agony, he prayed “more earnestly.” As his grief and sorrow increased upon him, he increased in the strength and fervour of his prayer; and yet, as he proceeded to repeat his request, the language of acquiescence became more absolute. At first he says, “If it be possible let this cup pass;” but afterwards he says, “If this cup may not pass, thy will be done” -- as if he felt what that will was, and meekly placed himself in harmony with it. We have reason to believe, however, that he did obtain, if not the thing he sought, that which was sufficient to supply its place. The apostle says, in the epistle to the Hebrews, “He offered up supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared,” or, was heard in respect to the thing he feared. He was not literally delivered from death, nor from those deadly mental pangs, so much worse than the cross itself; but he was saved from sinking under them; he was strengthened by an angel sent to him from the Father, and was thus enabled to ear up till the darkness had passed away. It was similar, I imagine, to what is recorded of the apostle afterwards; he besought the Lord thrice that a certain evil might be removed; and he was at length answered, not by the removal of the evil, but by the promise of grace and strength to sustain it. With this he was satisfied, and he felt that he had been heard, “in respect to the object of his fear;” for though he had not obtained the thing he sought, he had obtained a sufficient equivalent. The Great Sufferer, in the hour of his mighty anguish, wept and prayed for relief in his sorrow, and relief he had: for relief comes, whether the cup of sorrow be removed, or we have strength given us to drink it.

Having thus adverted to the severity and the sources of the Christ’s conflict and sufferings in Gethsemane, and to his spirit and deportment under them, it only remains to conclude the subject, by a very brief practical improvement. We should learn from it such things as the following: -- First, the evil of sin and the holiness of God. How fearful and bitter is moral transgression, when the innocent and immaculate Substitute of the guilty was affected as we have seen, by its pressure on his spirit! How intense must be the hostility of God against it, when, in order to the demonstration of that hostility, and for the purpose of displaying his righteousness in connection with the pardon of the penitent, “he spared not his own Son, but freely gave him up,” that he “might taste death for every man?” Again, we need not be surprised at the fearful agonies that are sometimes endured, from the deep sense of unpardoned sin. Happy will it be for every one of us at every return of recollected guilt, to cling to the hope provided for us in the vicarious sufferings of the Christ of God. “The blood of Christ cleanseth from all sin.” Pardon, in the gospel, is promised for a reason: that reason is the great redemptive act of the sacrifice of Messiah, which is to be confided in and pleaded by the contrite man. That reason never failed, and it never will, so long as there is a sinner to believe, and a God to hear. Again, let us dread to sin; if we sin let us not be surprised if we feel its bitterness: let us fear to fall into the hands of the just and holy One, but let us not despair of ultimate relief, since Christ died to facilitate the actings of His compassion and tenderness, “who retaineth not His anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy.” Again, in the trials and conflicts of the Christian life, in every season of suffering and sorrow, let us learn to imitate the example of Jesus. However we may value or desire, let us not depend, on the sympathy of others. Let us never forget, that in conflict with temptation, and in wrestling with God, we must of necessity act alone. Let us pray with fervour, importunity, repetition; if the surges rise and overwhelm the spirit, if, like the Lord, we have agony and anguish, let us learn to pray “the more earnestly” -- to pray, if needs be, with prostration and tears. The grace of Christ will never be denied to the sincere and sorrowful, though its manifestation may be delayed. He lives “a faithful and merciful high priest, in that, he himself having suffered being tempted, he knows how to succour them that are tempted.” Imitating his example, and confiding in his mercy, succour and light will come at last. No Christian must ever expect to be without his Gethsemanes; but he that faints not, but continues to pray without ceasing, will always find, that there is no Gethsemane without its angel.” --THOMAS BINNEY, LL.D.




Bethany. Painting by F. Frith--Engraving by G. Greatbach

WHAT a sweet word is home! What a cold world this would be, if there were no homes in it! Those lands are best, where homes are most loved and held as of great price. It is very sad to think, that there are so many whose houses, for their want of all needful room, and other things, cannot be called homes. They are haunts, dens, holes, but not homes. It is sad, also, that many fine mansions with large rooms, and plenty of them grandly furnished, want the lives and the loves that make true homes. Sin has wrought these things. God meant it otherwise. He set men in families, and wished every family to have a happy home.

When the Lord Jesus Christ came to earth, he did not have a home to take him in, at first. He was born in a stable, and lay in a manger. Yet the things which, more than the house we stay in, make home were there in the cattle’s stall. There were love, care and prayer. And after the visit to Bethlehem was over, and the flight into Egypt on account of the cruel wrath of Herod had been followed by return to Judea on Herod’s death, the child Jesus was taken to a home. It was a humble one, but there was never another like it. The Son of God, growing in stature and wisdom, was there. It is a thing to be thought about, that nothing has been told us as to how he lived in that home, except that he was an obedient, wise child, loved by God and men. No one has told the story of Christ’s childhood in details. The pretended gospels that try to tell it, prove themselves false and silly. I wonder if the Lord wished to keep that story hid, till he should tell it himself to the multitudes of little children, whom death should bring up to him in heaven from age to age. Be that as it may, surely it should be good for children living in their homes on earth, to think that once there was a child, living and growing like themselves under a roof in Nazareth, who was then the Word made flesh, and is now Lord of all.

But I have begun to speak about homes, because I have a story to tell about a pleasant, happy, home where Jesus sometimes visited, and all the persons in which loved him very much, and were loved by him. There are two things told about the intercourse of Jesus with that home. The one is connected with a feast, the other with a funeral. I wish to tell them both. The first will not take a long time to speak about; and in this story I shall be able just to show you how the day of the feast came to be followed by a time of sorrow and gloom.

The home of the family I speak of was in a little village about two miles east of Jerusalem, called Bethany. The road from Jerusalem to the village went up and over the mount of Olives. Whether the family had always lived there, or had moved to it from some other place, I do not know, nor do I know how they first came to know and to love Jesus; all that I know is that they were there, that Jesus was dear to them, and that they were dear to Jesus. There were three of them -- two sisters and a brother. I can have little doubt that in some of the homes where this story in “The Home Preacher” will be read, there will be exactly the same number of young persons -- two sisters and a brother. As I write I can think of some families I have known and loved, with exactly that number. To such threes about the fireside, the memory of Bethany should be very sweet and dear. Let me say to them, Could you turn to John xi. , and read it with change of your own names for those of Martha, and Lazarus, thus, Now Jesus loved __________ and her sister, and ___________? May it be so!

The house this family staid in is called Martha’s. That seems to show that she was the eldest of the family. Some think she was a widow, having her brother and sister to stay with her after her husband’s death. However that might be, the house was of some note in the village, and the sisters and brother were well known even in Jerusalem. So one day, when Christ was travelling with his disciples, and had come to Bethany, Martha made him welcome to her house, and he was pleased to go. Now Martha was a kind woman, and hospitable, perhaps a little proud of her nice way of receiving guests. Loving Christ therefore, as she did, she thought she must take a deal of care about the dinner. She would not leave the preparing and serving of it to the attendants, but bustled about herself, seeing to every thing, and getting quite cumbered about the many matters she had to attend to I suppose she got rather warm with her tasks; at least, her spirit got rather heated and hasty. For while she was going to and fro, ordering this and doing that, she noticed that her sister, whose name was Mary, was quietly sitting at the Saviour’s feet, hearing what he was saying. Mary was a thoughtful, reflecting person, liking to go deep into things; and Christ’s words were so deep, and pure, and good, and wonderful, that she was delighted to listen to him, drinking in his heavenly wisdom. I daresay she had sometimes vexed her active sister before, when, perhaps, she was found in a corner poring over the book of the law of the Lord, and trying to look forward into the grand days that the prophets said were to come. I think I hear her say, not unkindly, yet with a little impatience, I wonder at you, Mary, when there is so much to do? But on this occasion she should have recollected, that it was a rare and great opportunity for getting knowledge, and should have been willing to be herself the hand, while Mary was the ear. But she did not take her sister’s sitting to hear and earn in that light and grew a little cross.

There was no harm in Martha wishing to treat Christ kindly, and to do well what she had to do; but she either was disappointed to find no notice taken of her labours, or was really feeling that she needed help to get everything done to her mind. But if she ever complained to her sister before, she did not do so this time. She went to Christ himself, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister has left me to serve alone! Tell her to come and help me. There was surely a little pride in her doings in that speech, and a little grudging of her sister’s being at ease, while she was full of care.

That was Martha's mistake; she was full of care. She thought more about the dinner and serving it right, than she would have done, had she known her Lord better. I do not think she would have been indifferent about it, but she would not have been cumbered. She would have done her best about the table, but she would have thought more about her heart. And while her sister was sitting at Christ’s feet, she would have said, had she not been wrong in spirit for that time -- Mary understands the Master’s words better than I do; I will ask her to tell me about what he says afterwards. Instead of that, she in a way complained both of her sister and her Lord.

What did Jesus say or do? He answered her complaint with very remarkable words. He said, Martha, Martha, repeating her name to show how interested he was in her, and how sorry he was that she should know him so ill as to speak in the way she did: Martha, Martha, he said, you are worrying yourself about getting me a great many things. Do you know that only one thing is absolutely necessary to give me a welcome, and that, without that, all other things would give no welcome to me? One thing is needful, were his exact words. His meaning was, I think, as I have stated. The open heart was needful to entertain him; nothing else was indispensable; all else, without that, was useless. Mary had given him that; and he would not send her away from his feet just now, nor ever take away from her the part she had made choice of. She should always be a learner at his feet.

I have no doubt the kind reproof did Martha good. Possibly, however, she felt a little sore afterwards about her sister being commended, while she was not praised. If so, I can see a reason why that which happened by and by was sent by God. The love between the sisters may have cooled a little on Martha’s side; so God sent to the two a common sorrow, to weld their hearts yet closer. The sorrow came, however, for wider and higher ends -- to show Christ’s glory, and to teach the whole world. It was this: Lazarus fell sick, and at a time when the persecutions of the Jews had led Jesus to go away from the neighbourhood, and he could not be reached at once. If Martha had thought unkindly of Mary, or had not been quite pleased at what Christ said, all is forgotten or confessed and lamented now. Her sister and she are under a common grief, and they have a common Lord to whom they feel that they must appeal at once. So they sent a message to tell him that one he so loved was sick, and they watched over Lazarus together, with aching hearts. I think Martha would even now serve most, getting cordials and medicines for her sick brother, while Mary prayed more, and talked more with him about Israel’s God, and the beloved Lord; but they had no jealousy of each other and loved and wept together. Next story will tell more.


1. Where did Jesus’ mother find a home after his death?
2. Do you know a passage where beasts are spoken of having a home?
3. When did two disciples go perplexed to their own home?
4. Where is the grave spoken of as man’s home?
5. Where was the home of the child Jesus for many years?
6. Where do we read of Christ’s going to a feast in a Pharisee’s house?
7. When was the Son of God entertained by a hospitable matron, before he lived on the earth?
8. What other woman, of the same name, resembled Mary of Bethany in thoughtfulness?
9. Do you know any Old Testament text which pronounces blessings on those who take a posture like Mary’s?
10. Can you find a text telling us where to cast our cares?
11. What other instances do you find of Jesus’ tenderness and interest in naming the persons he speaks to?

ANSWERS to the foregoing questions may be found by turning to the following chapters: -- John xix.; 1 Sam. vi.; John xx.; Eccl. xii.; Matt. ii., or Luke iv.; Luke vii.; Gen. xviii.; Luke ii.; Pro. viii.; 1. Pet. v., or Ps. lv.; Matt. xvi., Luke xxii., John xiv., John xx., John xxi.



O GOD, we thank Thee for all the sweet joys of home; for the love of father and mother, and sister and brother. We pray that peace and holiness may always be in our homes, and that Thou wouldst bless all that dwell there. Bless our dear parents. Bless those whose earthly father or mother, or both, are no longer on earth; be Thou a father to them. Bless all endeavors to provide better homes for the poor, and give to rich and poor those dispositions and habits of life which make home happy. May Thy fear and Thy love bless human homes everywhere more and more. May all strife between brothers and sisters cease, and may the time soon come when all men shall so dwell together as to make the whole world like one happy home. So, O blessed Father, shall Thy children on earth be prepared for going home to Thyself in heaven, and dwelling with Thee always--a happy holy family wearing Thy name, and made like unto their Lord; to whom be glory for ever. Amen.



LORD God Almighty, who art wonderful in counsel and excellent in working, we would recognize Thy hand, and adore Thy perfections, as seen in the things that are made. The heavens declare Thy glory, and the earth is full of Thy praise. But there is a spirit in man, and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth him understanding. Thou hast made us for Thyself; for Thyself have we been redeemed. We rejoice in Thy purposes of love and mercy, which have been ever of old; for the words of patriarchs and prophets, which prepared Thy way, that in the fulness of time Thou mightest be manifested in Thy Son, and through Him reconcile the world unto Thyself. Grant unto us, we beseech Thee, so to receive Christ Jesus the Lord, that we, being cleansed from our sins by His most precious blood, may imbibe His spirit and follow His example, be daily strengthened and comforted by His grace, and at length be permitted to enter into His joy. These and all other blessings we ask in that name which is above every name; and to Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, would ascribe praise and glory for ever. Amen.

HYMN, or Psalm cxxi.

HOLY Father! When we praise
With imperfect accents here;
Ancient of eternal days,
Lord of heaven, and earth, and air;
Stooping from amid the blaze
Of the flaming seraphim;
Hear and help us, while we raise
This our sabbath evening hymn.

We have trod thy temple, Lord;
We have joined thy public praise;
We have sought thy heavenly grace:
All thy goodness we record;
All our powers to Thee we bring;
Let thy faithfulness afford,
Now, the shadow of thy wing.

We have seen thy dying love,
Jesus! Once for sinner slain:
We would follow Thee above;
We like Thee, would rise and reign.
Seasons of delight in Thee!
Let thy presence, Holy Dove,
Fit us for eternity.

LUKE III. 1-18

NOW, in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of Iturea and of the region of Trachonitis, and Lysanias the tetrarch of Abilene, 2. Annas and Caiaphas being the high priests, the word of God came unto John, the son of Zacharias, in the wilderness. 3. And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins; 4. As it is written in the book of the words of Esaias the prophet, saying, the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. 5. Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth; 6. And all flesh shall see the salvation of God. 7. Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8. Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance; and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father; for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. 9. And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. 10. And the people asked him, saying, What shall we do then? 11. He answereth and saith unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath meat, let him do likewise. 12. Then came also publicans to be baptized, and said unto him, Master, what shall we do? 13. And he said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed you. 14. And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages. 15. And as the people were in expectation, and all men mused in their hearts of John, whether he were the Christ, or not; 16. John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but one mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose; he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire; 17. Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable. 18. And many other things, in his exhortation, preached he unto the people.

1 Peter I. 1-11.

PETER, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, 2. Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. 3. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which, according to his abundant mercy, hath begotten us again unto a lively hope, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4. To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, 5. Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation, ready to be revealed in the last time: 6. Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season (if need be) ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations; 7. That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise, and honour, and glory, at the appearing of Jesus Christ: 8. Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable, and full of glory: 9. Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls. 10. Of which salvations the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: 11. Searching what, or what manner of time, the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.



WE come before Thee, O Lord, at the close of Thy holy sabbath, to offer unto Thee our evening sacrifice of prayer and praise; to give Thee thanks for the mercies of the day, and to commit ourselves for the night to Thy gracious protection. Glory be to Thee for the day of rest and worship, for the sacred hours which have passed over us, and for all we have enjoyed during their stay, of Christian fellowship, sympathy, and communion. A day in Thy courts is better than a thousand; we had rather be doorkeepers in the house of our God than dwell in the tents of wickedness. Often in the high services of Thy church has Thou put joy and gladness into our hearts, more than the men of the world enjoy when their corn and their wine do most abound. Again hast Thou broken to us, by Thy ministers, Thy Spirit, and Thy word, the living and life-giving bread; we have eaten of the hidden manna; we have drunk of the the water from the spiritual rock; we have seen the King in His beauty, have beheld His stately steppings in the sanctuary, and have felt the warmth and sunlight of His love. May the sacred satisfactions of Thy house be as enduring as they are precious; may the influence of the sabbath go with us throughout all the week; may our worldly engagements be regulated and sanctified by religious faith, so that, in all places and at all times, whatever we do may be done in accordance with our sacred character as belonging to the royal priesthood of God. May no day and no duty be deemed by us common or unclean; but whether we eat or drink, buy or sell, rule or serve, may we do all to Thy glory; that all time may be hallowed by the spirit of worship, and all service become divine. Hearken, O Lord, to the common prayer in which we have joined this day, the public and uttered supplications of Thy people; and fulfil also, and graciously remember, the private and personal breathings of individual souls the desires secretly poured into Thine ear, or made known by groanings that could not be uttered. Forgive the formality, levity, and thoughtlessness which may have marked the behaviour of some this day, who appeared to worship with Thy people, but whose hearts were without sympathy with them, and far from Thee. Have mercy on those who, though surrounded by the light, walk in darkness; who know not their spiritual destitution, and are unaffected by the sinfulness of sin; who are not conscious of that spiritual hunger and thirst which Thou hast promised to satisfy, for which Thou hast so richly provided in the gospel of Thy Son. O that all who hear of the common salvation might be partakers of its blessedness, and being brought into true and living fellowship with Thy church, might be filled with joy and peace in believing, and know by experience the happiness of conformity to the holy and acceptable and perfect will of God. Happy are they who, having fellowship one with another, and with Jesus Christ their loving Lord, find in the ordinances of His church that feast which He has provided for them that are His -- a feast of fat things and of wine on the lees, of fat things full of marrow, and of wine on the lees well refined. May the blessedness of waiting upon Thee be so felt by each of us, as often to prompt the exclamation, Lord, it is good to be here! Animated and refreshed by the duties and enjoyments of this holy day, rejoicing in Thy love and care, we would now gather ourselves together under the wing of Thy Fatherhood, and commit ourselves to Thee, that we may be preserved from the perils and dangers of this night. The day and the night, the light and the darkness, are alike Thine. All our times are in Thy hand. We close our eyes under Thy sleepless guardianship; and when we awake we are still with Thee. So let our weeks and sabbaths be ever Thine -- the days of our years all loyally devoted to Thy service; so that when all means and ordinances, sabbaths and sacraments, all the things which are made for man, shall have ceased and determined, we may enter upon that higher life for which man was made, for which we have been redeemed, and towards, which we would ever be pressing, following the example of those who through faith and patience are inheriting the promises. Hear us, O Lord, in heaven, Thy dwelling place, fulfil all our prayers receive our praise, accept and bless us, for Jesus’ sake. Amen.





But do thou for me, O God the Lord, for thy name’s sake: because thy mercy is good, deliver thou me.
I am poor and needy, and my heart is wounded within me.
I am gone like the shadow when it declineth: I am tossed up and down as the locust.
My knees are weak through fasting; and my flesh faileth of fatness.
I became also a reproach unto them: when they looked upon me they shaked their heads.
Help me, O Lord my God: O save me according to thy mercy;
That they may know that this is thy hand.

Ps. cix. 21 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27.


I love the Lord, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications.
Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.
The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of hell gat hold upon me: I found trouble and sorrow.
Then called I upon the name of the Lord: O Lord, I beseech thee, deliver my soul.
Gracious is the Lord, and righteous; yea, our God is merciful.
The Lord preserveth the simple: I was brought low, and he helped me.
Return unto thy rest, O my soul; for the Lord hath dealt bountifully with thee.

Ps. cxvi. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.



Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty:
He shall deliver thee in six troubles; yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee.
In famine he shall redeem thee from death; and in war from the power of the sword.
Thou shalt be hid from the scourge of the tongue; neither shalt thou be afraid of destruction when it cometh.
And thou shalt know that thy tabernacle shall be in peace.
Thou shalt come to thy grave in a full age, like as a shock of corn cometh in his season.

Job. v. 17, 19, 20, 21, 24, 26.


If ye suffer for righteousness; sake, happy are ye:
For even hereunto were ye called; because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example that ye should follow his steps.
Jesus said, He that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.
He that findeth his life shall lose it; and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.
Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Rejoice, and be exceeding glad; for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

1. Pet. iii. 14. 1 Pet. ii. 21. Matt. x. 38, 39. Matt. v. 10, 12.



O remember not against us former iniquities: let thy tender mercies speedily prevent us: for we are brought very low.
O that I knew where I might find him! that I might come even to his seat!
I would order my cause before him, and fill my mouth with arguments.
I would know the words which he would answer me, and understand what he would say unto me.
Will he plead against me with his great power? No: but he would put strength in me.

Ps. lxxix. 8. Job xxiii. 3, 4, 5, 6.


Turn us, O God of our salvation, and cause thine anger toward us to cease.
Wilt thou be angry with us for ever? wilt thou draw out thine anger to all generations?
Wilt thou not revive us again, that thy people may rejoice in thee?
Shew us thy mercy, O Lord, and grant us thy salvation.
I will hear what God the Lord will speak; for he will speak peace unto his people, and to his saints,; but let them not turn again to folly.

Ps. lxxxv. 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.



Lord, how are they increased that trouble me! Many are they that rise up against me.
Many there be which say of my soul, There is no help for him in God.
But thou, O Lord, art a shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head.
I cried unto the Lord with my voice, and he heard me out of his holy hill.
I laid me down and slept; I awaked: for the Lord sustained me.
I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people that have set themselves against me round about.
Salvation belongeth unto the Lord: thy blessing is upon thy people.

Ps. iii. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8.


Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.
He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.
Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God; and I will write upon him my new name.
He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

1 Cor. xvi. 13. Rev. iii. 5, 12, 13.



Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved.
Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breast-plate of righteousness.
For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
For whatever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

Phil. iv. 1. Eph. vi. 14. 1 John v. 3, 4, 5.


The servant of the Lord must not strive: but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient,
In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;
And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.
Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with all long-suffering, and doctrine.
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine.

2 Tim. ii. 24, 25, 26. 2 Tim. iv. 2, 3.



Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time.
Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.
A good man, out of the good treasure of the heart, bringeth forth good things: and an evil man, out of the evil treasure, bringeth forth evil things.
But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.
For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

Col. iv. 5, 6. Matt. xii. 35, 36, 37.


Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.
For if the word spoken by angels were stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense of reward;
How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?
For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
Choose you this day whom ye will serve.
Heb. ii. 1, 2, 3. Matt. xvi. 26. Josh. xxiv. 15.

You can download Week 33 in pdf format

Return to Book Index page


This comment system requires you to be logged in through either a Disqus account or an account you already have with Google, Twitter, Facebook or Yahoo. In the event you don't have an account with any of these companies then you can create an account with Disqus. All comments are moderated so they won't display until the moderator has approved your comment.

comments powered by Disqus