JESUS! In Word and Song

WEEK 25

DISCIPLES WAITING FOR THE PROMISE

[JESUS’] right to send the Spirit into the hearts of fallen men was acquired by His atonement. It was the well-earned reward of all His toil and sufferings. One of the chief results of the perfect satisfaction which Christ offered to God on behalf of His people, was His right now to bestow the Spirit upon them.1

“Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and said to them, ‘Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high” (Luke 24:45-49 ESV).

Ten days they waited together attempting to comprehend this power that was coming. They also had plenty of time to ruminate their commission of proclaiming CHRIST’s ability to grant repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 

This SPIRIT would: “teach them all things, lead them into all truth, take of the things of Christ, and show them to them, and bring to their remembrance all things they had seen and heard.”2

The SPIRIT would fortify and inspire them with “courage and greatness of soul with undaunted courage, and resolution, and boldness.”3

And it is the same power the SPIRIT endues to us who believe. “[T]hough God promised special grace to the apostles, and Christ bestowed it on them, we ought to hold universally that no mortal is of himself qualified for preaching the gospel, except so far as God clothes him with his Spirit.4

“That bountiful supply of the Spirit was designed for the erecting and equipping of the New Testament church.”5 We, too, are to wait to be “aided by the power of the Holy Spirit.”6

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ENDNOTES

(25) At the Temple Praising

            1. A.W. Pink, The Holy Spirit (Pensacola, FL: Mt. Zion Publications), http://www.mountzion.org. 30, brackets mine.

            2. John Gill, “Commentary on Luke 24:49,” 1999, John Gill’s Exposition of the Whole Bible, 15 February 2021 https://www.studylight.org/commentary/luke/24-49.html#verse-geb.

            3. Gill.

            4. John Calvin, “Commentary on Luke 24:49,” 1840-57, Calvin’s Commentary on the Bible, 15 February 2021 https://www.studylight.org/commentary/luke/24-49.html#verse-cal.

            5. A.W. Pink, The Holy Spirit, (Pensacola, FL: Mt. Zion Publications), http://www.mountzion.org. 30.

            6. Albert Barnes, “Commentary on Luke 24:49,” 1870, Barnes’ Notes on the Whole Bible, 15 February 2021 https://www.studylight.org/commentary/luke/24-49.html#verse-bnb.

            7. “All these with one accord were devoting themselves to prayer . . .” (Acts 1:14 ESV).

            8. “ . . . he breathed on them and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit” (John 20:22 ESV). “Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures,” (Luke 24:45 ESV).

            9. “And they . . . were continually in the temple blessing God” (Luke 24:52-53 ESV).

            10. “ . . . stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high” (Luke 24:49 ESV).

JESUS! In Word and Song

WEEK 15

THE SUFFERINGS OF JESUS

“The Heidelberg Catechism says that Christ sustained the anger of God against the sin of His people ‘during his whole life on earth, but especially at the end’ (Q&A 37).”1

“One who is the Creator of the universe lived His life on the same plane ours is lived, passed through the same trials we experience, and suffered not only as we do, but far more acutely.”2

A large boulder on the seashore takes the full force of each wave, while small rocks and pebbles move back and forth with the waves. JESUS took the full brunt of resistance against Him (for He never sinned), while we move back and forth with sin making it not as severe as the suffering of JESUS.

He was made perfect ‘through suffering’ (Heb 2:10). Therefore we should see all the hardship and suffering that comes to us in life as something that God brings to us to do us good, strengthening our trust in him and our obedience, and ultimately increasing our ability to glorify him.3

The suffering of JESUS consisted of two reasons: (1) He suffered because He was the Son of GOD and spoke Truth and lived it out (Matt 4:17) and (2) He suffered because He was the Son of Man and tempted to sin but did not (Heb 2:18).

Scripture speaks of two kinds of suffering Christians experience: (1) We will suffer as JESUS suffered by unholy men because we speak Truth and live it out (Acts 4:1-3) and (2) we will suffer because we are mere men; we’re tempted to sin, and succumb to it (1 John 1:8).

“Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Tim 3:12 ESV).

The indwelling of Christ in the believer is a kind of second incarnation of the Son of God. When Christ enters the heart of a poor sinner, He once more clothes Himself with our nature. The life Christ lived in the days of His time on earth was a life of sorrow, of conflict, of temptation, of desertion, of want and of suffering in every form. Does He now live a different life in the believer? No; He is still tempted and deserted, in sorrow and in want, in humiliation and in suffering—in His people. Did you think that these fiery darts were leveled at you? Did you suppose that you were deserted, you suffered, you were despised, you were trodden under foot? No, it was Christ dwelling in you. All the cruelty of Satan, all the power of sin and all the contempt of the world are leveled, not against you, but against the Lord dwelling in you.4

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ENDNOTES

(15) JESUS, You Suffered

1. “The Sufferings of Christ,” Ligonier Ministries, 17 June 2021 https://www.ligonier.org/learn/devotionals/the-suffering-of-christ/.

            2. A.W. Pink, “Commentary on Hebrews 2,” A.W. Pink’s Commentary on John and Hebrews, 9 February 2021 https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/awp/hebrews-2.html.

            3. Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1994) 812.

            4. Octavius Winslow, Evening Thoughts (Grand Rapids, MI: Reformation Heritage Books, 2005) November 7th.

            5. John Newton, Letters of John Newton (Carlisle, PA: THE BANNER OF TRUTH TRUST, 1960, reprinted 1990) 82.

            6. “ . . . ‘Sing aloud with gladness . . . and raise shouts . . . proclaim, give praise, and say, . . .” (Jeremiah 31:7).

JESUS! In Word and Song

WEEK 11

JESUS GREW IN WISDOM

“And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom” (Isa 11:2 ESV).“And Jesus increased in wisdom”(Luke 2:52 ESV). “And the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom. And the favor of God was upon him”(Luke 2:40 ESV).

“The Lord GOD has given me the tongue of those who are taught. Morning by morning he awakens; he awakens my ear to hear as those who are taught” (Isa 50:4 ESV).

“Christ was filled with the Spirit from the womb and received his gifts and graces from [God] without measure.”1

“From birth to baptism the Spirit directed His mental and moral development, and strengthened and kept Him through all the years of preparation and toil. He was in the Carpenter as truly as in the Messiah, and the work at the bench was as perfect as the sacrifice on the Cross” (S. Chadwick).2

As CHRIST was able to perform the will of His FATHER by relying on the HOLY SPIRIT, so I, too, can perform the will of my FATHER. All I have to do is ask.

“If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him” (Luke 11:13 ESV)!

“As Jesus was entirely dependent on the Father for all His words and all His works, so the believer can do nothing of himself. He must cease entirely from his own doing, and wait for the working of God in him”3

Octavius Winslow, in his comments below speaks of the HOLY SPIRIT and how He works in man. It is by the same process and progression He worked in JESUS, as the Son of Man.

It is a work of time. The soul is placed in the school of deep experience and is led step by step, stage by stage. The knowledge of self and of Christ increases, deeper views of indwelling sin are discovered, the heart’s treachery is more acutely felt, the devices of Satan are better known, the mystery of God’s gracious and providential dealings are more clearly unfolded and better understood.4

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ENDNOTES

(11) STOP. ASK. For the SPIRIT

1. John Gill, “Commentary of Isaiah 11:2,” 1999, The New John Gill Exposition of the Whole Bible, 29 January 2021 https://www.studylight.org/commentaires/eng/geb/isaiah-11.html.

            2. A. W. Pink, The Holy Spirit (Pensacola, FL: Mt. Zion Publications), http://www.mountzion.org, 32.

            3. Andrew Murray, Abide in Christ (Springdale, PA: Whitaker House, 1979) 118.

            4. Octavius Winslow, Evening Thoughts (Grand Rapids, MI: Reformation Heritage Books, 2005) 188.

            5. Robert Hawker, “Commentary of Isaiah 11:2,” 1828, Hawker’s Poor Man’s Commentary, 30 January 2021, https://www.studylight.org/commentary/isaiah/11-2.html#verse-pmc.

            6. Albert Barnes, “Commentary on Isaiah 11:2,” 1870, Albert Barnes’ Notes on the Whole Bible, 30 January 2021 https://www.studylight.org/commentary/isaiah/11-2.html#verse-bnb.

JESUS! In Word and Song

WEEK 6

JESUS IS FULLY GOD, FULLY MAN

Christ possesses the fullness of the divine nature and attributes (Col 1:19). In Greek philosophical thought, matter was evil; spirit was good. Thus, it was unthinkable that God would ever take on a human body. [The Apostle] Paul refutes that false teaching by stressing the reality of Christ’s incarnation. Jesus was not only fully God, but fully human as well.1

“Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself being born in the likeness of men” (Phil 2:5-7 ESV).

“Our Lord emptied Himself, but the Father gave to His self-emptied Son the fullness of His Spirit. He did not cease to be God, but He became in all things human and was subject to such conditions as were possible to human nature possessed of His Spirit.”2

Fully GOD: “Jesus did not give up any of his divine attributes at the incarnation. He remained in full possession of all of them. For if he were to ever give up any of his divine attributes, he would cease being God.”3

Fully man: “He was not only a man in appearance and likeness, but in reality, having the same common nature, distinguished by the same specific differences, but united to his own eternally divine nature.”4 “Jesus did not cease to be fully human after the resurrection. He will be a man forever as he represents redeemed humanity for all of eternity.”5

[A]ll proceeds from the Father, through the Son, and is by the Holy Spirit. It was the Spirit who formed Christ’s human nature, and directed the whole tenor of His earthly life. Nothing was undertaken but by the Spirit’s directing. The right use of the faculties of His soul owed their exercise to the Holy Spirit who fully controlled Him.6

Just as JESUS, the Son of Man navigated life on earth, so must I. “Jesus’ humanity means he is a true example and pattern for human character and conduct. ‘For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps’ (1 Per 2:21; cf. 1 John 2:6).”7

The two mysteries which exist in the manhood of Christ exist also in the ransomed soul; the presence of the Spirit, and the union with the Son of God. Each soul in grace is a partaker of the Divine Nature. The pure nature of Christ is the instrument of the Spirit in the soul. [T]ransformation of our nature is being accomplished, and His character gradually impressed.8

“The full flood of my life is in the perfect understanding of God and in the communion with Him that Jesus Himself had.”9

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ENDNOTES

(6) Fully GOD Fully Man

            1. John MacArthur, One Perfect Life (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 2012) 18.

            2. Samuel Chadwick, The Way to Pentecost (Fort Washington, PA: CLC Publications, 2000, 2014) 79.

            3. Matt Perman, “How Can Jesus be Both God and Man?” 5 October 2006, desiringGod, 28 January 2021 https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/how-can-jesus-be-god-and-man.

            4. Thomas Coke, “Philippians 2:7,” 1801-1803, Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. 18 January 2021 https://pro.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tcc/philippians-2.html.

            5. The ESV Study Bible, English Standard Version (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2001, ESV Text Edition, 2011) 2517.

            6. A. W. Pink, The Holy Spirit (Pensacola, FL: Mt. Zion Publications), http://www.mountzion.org, 32.

            7. The ESV Study Bible, English Standard Version (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2001, ESV Text Edition, 2011) 2518.

            8. W. H. Hutchings, “Commentary on Ephesians 1:17,” 1905-1909, The Biblical Illustrator, 28 January 2021 https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tbi/ephesians-1.html.

            9. Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest (New York, NY: Dodd, Mead & Co., 1935, Fifty-fifth printing) August 31st.

            10. “For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering” (Hebrews 2:10 ESV).

11. Isaac Watts, The Psalms and Hymns of Isaac Watts (Morgan, PA: Soli Deo Gloria Publications, 1997) 302. Oliver Holden, Hymn tune: Coronation, 1792.

            12. “Therefore he had to be made like his brothers in every respect . . .” (Hebrews 2:17 ESV).

            13. “For he who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one source. That is why he is not ashamed to call them brothers,” (Hebrews 2:11 ESV).

            14. “Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things . . .” Hebrews 2:14 ESV).

15. Isaac Watts, The Psalms and Hymns of Isaac Watts, Book 1, Hymn XVI, (Morgan, PA: Soli Deo Gloria Publications, 1997) 302. Oliver Holden, Hymn tune: Coronation, 1792.

CHRIST TEACHES SUFFERING

“For us all—for you, tempted to interpret your afflictions as signals of wrath and your sins as seals of condemnation, your poverty as the mark of neglect, your seasons of darkness as token of desertion, and your doubts and fears as evidences of a false hope and of self-deception. For you, dear saint of God, Jesus was delivered up” Octavius Winslow (ref#135, Dec 14th).

“[L]et no Christian call into question God’s love when he is brought under painful afflictions and trials. God did not enrich Christ on earth with temporal prosperity. But He [gave] Him the Spirit without measure (Jon 3:34). Learn that spiritual blessings are the principal gifts of divine love” Arthur W. Pink (ref#253, p10).

“Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God” (1 Pet 4:1 ESV).

“Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps. 1 Peter 2:21 “Christ teaches us how to live, and He also teaches us how to suffer. Because we live in a world of suffering and we need to be taught how to suffer, He teaches us how to suffer. The cross teaches us how to suffer—not only how to live morally and ethically, but how to suffer. ‘The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune’ come to us all: people misunderstanding us, injustices done to us, the failure of trusted friends, people letting us down, disappointments, loneliness, physical pain” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, April 30th).

“He that abides in Christ the Crucified One, learns to know what it is to be crucified with Him, and in Him to be indeed dead unto sin” Andrew Murray (ref#266, p199).

“He suffered for us; he calls us to be conformed to him in sufferings. He conquered in his own person, and he will make each of his members more than conquerors in due season” John Newton (ref#322, p182).

UNDERSTANDING DISCIPLINE

“[Y]ou have been fully forgiven, but you have not yet been completely rebuilt into all that grace will make you. The cross of Jesus guarantees that all broken things will be fixed, but they are not fixed yet. So as I bask in the complete forgiveness that I have been given and enjoy freedom from the anxiety that I will not measure up, I cannot live unwisely. One danger (sin) still lives inside me and another (temptation) still lurks outside me, so I am still a person in daily and desperate need of grace. Forgiveness is complete. Final restoration is yet to come. Knowing you live in between the two is the key to a restful and wise Christian life” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, May 21st).

“[God’s] discipline is never the result of his rejection, but the fruit of his acceptance” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, Nov 1st).

“His discipline is not teaching you what to do to earn your place as one of his children; his careful, loving discipline actually proves that you are one of his children” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, March 20th).

“[Our fathers] disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but [God] disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it” (Heb 12:10-11 ESV).

“The Spirit does not remove our ‘infirmities,’ any more than the Lord took away Paul’s thorn in the flesh; but He enables us to bear them” A.W. Pink (ref#269, p145).

“[T]hrough many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:22 ESV).

“It was never designed by God, when He chose His people, that they should be an untried people. They were never chosen for worldly peace and earthly joy” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, March 8th AM).

“If we forget to live at the foot of the cross in deepest lowliness of spirit, God will not forget to make us suffer under His rod” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, March 6th, PM).

THE SPIRIT, OUR PROVISION

“Jesus cannot come as long as there is anything in the way either of goodness or badness. When He comes am I prepared for Him to drag into the light every wrong thing I have done? It is just here that He comes. Repentance does not bring a sense of sin, but a sense of unutterable unworthiness. ‘He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and fire.’ John does not speak of the baptism of the Holy Ghost as an experience, but as a work performed by Jesus Christ. ‘He shall baptize you.’ The only conscious experience those who are baptized with the Holy Ghost ever have is a sense of absolute unworthiness” Oswald Chambers (ref#7, Aug 22nd).

“God has made provision for our holiness and He has also given us a responsibility for it. God’s provision for us consists in delivering us from the reign of sin, uniting us with Christ, and giving us the indwelling Holy Spirit to reveal sin, to create a desire for holiness, and to strengthen us in our pursuit of holiness. Through the power of the Holy Spirit and according to the new nature He gives, we are to put to death the misdeeds of the body” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p78).

“The saving work of the Spirit in the heart of God’s elect is a gradual and progressive one” A.W. Pink (ref#269, p78).

“It is not the work of the Spirit to tell you the meaning of Scripture, and give you the knowledge of divinity, without your own study and labour. To reject study on the pretense of the sufficiency of the Spirit, is to reject the Scripture itself” Richard Baxter (ref#225, July 22nd).

“The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him” (Rom 8:16 ESV).

“Weakness is a reproach when such a might is at our service. Defeat is dishonor when the partnership of God is rejected” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p73).

WHO THE SPIRIT IS

“The Third Person of the Holy Trinity agreed to sanctify the object of the Father’s eternal choice, and of the Son’s redemptive satisfaction” A.W. Pink (ref#269, p21).

“The Spirit sets apart God’s people into the sphere of the holy so that believers are now holy and righteous in their standing before God, and they grow in actual holiness in their lives” ESV Study Bible (ref#125, p2405).

“The Spirit dwells in men, clothes Himself with consecrated humanity, and accomplishes extraordinary things through quite ordinary people on the simple conditions of abiding surrender, implicit obedience, and simple faith” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p66).

“[T]he gracious Holy Spirit pledged Himself to sanctify wretches, and frame and fit them to be partakers of holiness, and live forever in God’s spotless presence” A.W. Pink (ref#269, p21).

“[The Spirit] comes to the things that are weak and despised and dignifies them with His Glory. Before Glory comes, the church will have to elevate those things that are despised by the world, such as modesty, chastity, inner beauty, self-effacement, willingness to serve, and willingness to be in the background. These are the kinds of values the Holy Spirit is exalting” Bob Sorge (ref#197, p17).

“[The Spirit] clothes Himself with sanctified men and women. The Spirit of the Lord clothed Itself with Gideon (Judges 6:34), He did not come upon him like a garment, but the Spirit clothed Himself with Gideon as with a garment” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p54, 60).

OUR HELPER

“God’s firm foundation stands, bearing this seal: ‘The Lord knows those who are his,’ and, ‘Let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from iniquity.’” (2 Tim 2:19 ESV).

“[W]hen confronted with your failure you can run not away from God but to him. You can do this because your standing with him has never been based on your righteous performance, but on the perfect obedience of your Savior” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, Mar 6th).

“[W]hat he really is concerned about is our state or condition. [W]hat really matters is what we are” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#211, p76).

“Though grace be wrought in the hearts of the regenerate, it is not in their power to act it: He who implanted it must renew, excite, and marshal it. ‘If ye through the Spirit do mortify’ (Rom 8:13). First, He it is who discovers the sin that is to be mortified, opening it to the view of the soul, stripping it of its deceits, exposing its deformity. Second, He it is who gradually weakens sin’s power, acting as ‘the Spirit of burning’ (Isa 4:4), consuming the dross. Third, He it is who reveals and applies the efficacy of the Cross of Christ, in which there is contained a sin-mortifying virtue, whereby we are ‘made conformable unto His death’ (Phil 3:10). Fourth, He it is who strengthens us with might in the inner man, so that our graces—the opposites of the lust of the flesh—are invigorated and called into exercise” A.W. Pink (ref#269, p114).

“Go, again and again, to this divine Fountain, taking to Jesus every corruption as it develops, every sin as it is felt, ever sorrow as it rises” Octavius Winslow (ref#135, Mar 28th).

“[I]t was not enough for him to just forgive me; he had to come and live inside me or I would not be what I had been re-created to be or do. I need the presence and power of the Holy Spirit living inside me because sin kidnaps the desires of my heart, blinds my eyes, and weakens my knees. My problem is not just the guilt of sin; it’s the inability of sin as well. So God graces his children with the convicting, sight-giving, desire-producing, and strength-affording presence of the Spirit” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, Jan 7th).

“It is by yielding to the Spirit’s impulses, heeding His striving, submitting ourselves unto His government, that any measure of success is granted us in this most important work” A.W. Pink (ref#269, p115).

“We can bring our up-and-down moral performance into subjection to the settled fixedness of what Jesus feels about us. [L]et the heart of Christ calm us into joy” Dane Ortland (ref#382, p187).

REBELLION AGAINST GOD

“We must hate all sin for what it really is: an expression of rebellion against God” Jerry Bridges (ref#192, p198).

“God cannot but look upon sin with infinite detestation” A.W. Pink (ref#269, p67).

“It’s hard to admit, but doing what is right isn’t natural for us. Sin turns us all into self-appointed sovereigns over our own little kingdoms. Sin makes us all self-absorbed and self-focused. Sin causes us all to name ourselves righteous. Sin seduces us into thinking we are somehow, some way smarter than God. Sin causes us all to trust in our own wisdom. Sin makes us all want to write our own rules. Sin makes us resistant to criticism and change. Sin makes our eyes and our hearts wander. Sin causes us to crave material things more than spiritual provision. Sin causes us to want and esteem pleasure more than character. In our quest to be God, sin causes us to forget God. It reduces us all to glory thieves, taking for ourselves the glory that belongs to him. All of this means that sin causes us to step over God’s wise boundaries in thought, desire, word, and action again and again. This is what’s natural for a sinner” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, Dec 17th).

“Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, but the LORD weighs the heart” (Prov 21:2 ESV).

“Transgression means a desire to have our own way, a desire to do what we want to do. ‘Iniquity’ means perversion. [D]o you not see that so many things you do are twisted and perverted? Jealously and envy and malice—how horrible the twist! The desire that evil may come to someone, the dislike of praise of another—evil thoughts, bent, twisted, ugly, foul—‘iniquity’! And we are all guilty of iniquity” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Dec 27th).

“The principle of self-confidence is the natural product of the human heart; the great characteristic of our apostate race is a desire to live, think, and act independently of God. Remember the divine and sovereign grace does not undertake the extraction of the root of this depraved principle from the heart of its subjects. The root still remains to the very close of life’s pilgrimage, though in a measure weakened, subdued, and mortified. It demands the most rigid watchfulness connected with ceaseless prayer, lest it should spring upward to the destruction of his soul’s prosperity, the grieving of the Spirit, and the dishonor of God” Octavius Winslow (ref#135, Oct 13th).

“If you are God’s child, you’re either giving in to sin or giving way to the operation of rescuing grace, but your heart’s never neutral” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, Mar 30th).