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coming" (1 Cor. xv. 16-23). That will be the last and crowning act of the resurrection power of
“THE FELLOWSHIP OF HIS SUFFERINGS." Christ in us. That will change the body of our Among the many trials which God's people are humiliation into the similitude of the body of His called upon to endure perhaps the saddest of all is glory. We shall then be like Him; for we shall
sorrow for the sin of a loved one. We can, by see Him as He is.
God's grace, soon learn to trace some trials directly Paul is placed before believers, as well as before to His loving will. When bereavement or sickness sinners, as an example. That he might know Christ come, it is not difficult to see His hand, but in the and the power of His resurrection, he gladly suffered
case of another's sin we are tempted to ask, the loss of all things. And shall we prefer our ease, this be the Lord ?" and a part of the great mystery our worldly enjoyments and honours, to this know- of the origin of evil comes very close to our own ledge? be content to live as invalids, when Christ heart. While we must remain content not to exercame, not only that we might have life, but that we
cise ourselves in that which is too high for us might have it more abundantly? There are two (Ps. cxxxi. 1), there are some elements in this things which effectually hinder the growth of this
sorrow which may afford special comfort to he life. Any known sin, or conscious neglect of duty, child of God. will put an arrest upon it. Unbelief will effectually Grief at another's sin is a Christlike sorrow, if check and weaken it. Let us put far from us what- grieve in the same spirit as He did. It may be ever we know to be opposed to the will of God ; let that we grieve over the injury done to ourselves by us, at the same time, plead and believe His promises the sin, but this is a worldly view of the case. relative to its fulness, and, assuredly, they shall be There is also the human view of it, when our fulfilled in our experience. All the promises of God affections are wounded. For this we have our Lord's are Yea and Amen in Christ Jesus.
gracious sympathy who was Himself “wounded in Finally, let our eye never turn away from the the house of His friends” (Zech. xiii. 6). But goal of our hope—the glorious appearing of our
there is yet a higher motive for grief at sin, when great God and Saviour Jesus Christ. Let us realise
we look away from self, above all human considerathe blessed truth that His coming is near; and that tions, and think of His grief at the sin of those when He doth appear, we shall see Him as He is. whom He died to save. He who wept over JeruAnd having this hope in Him, we shall purify our
salem in her sin, has now at the right hand of God selves, even as He is pure.
the same heart of love, and grieves for those who still reject Him and "crucify Him afresh.” Sin is
that which caused His suffering, not only on the THE BLOOD OF CHRIST. — It is heart-cleansing cross, but all through His life on earth, and thereblood; the blood of the Shepherd, shed by the fore in sorrowing for it we are “partakers of His Sword of Justice, is for the washing of the sheep : sufferings." The blood of Christ cleanses from all sin. It If you are grieving over a dear one's sin, you cleanses meritoriously from the guilt of sin in are not alone in your sorrow, it is your Lord's justification ; it cleanses efficaciously from the filth sorrow too. You are tasting some of that cup of of sin in sanctification ; it cleanses only, for no which He drank so plentifully, and He knows by means, no duties, no tears, no prayers, no sermon, actual experience what you are suffering. You no sacrament, no ordinances, no communion-table, cannot measure the depths of what He endured on will cleanse you from sin, but only the blood of account of that particular sin which is grieving you, Christ. It cleanses infallibly: for all the devils in for to do so, you would have to realise the depths hell and all the evils in the heart, shall not be able of His love, and the purity of that holiness to to mar the efficacy of this blood if it be sprinkled which the least taint of sin is agony. on you by the hand of the Spirit. The whole com- accustomed to think of sin as that which God hates, pany that are standing about the throne have and rightly so ; but do not let this deprive us of the washed their robes and made them white in the comfort of realising His sympathy in our grief at it. blood of the Lamb.—Ralph Erskine, 1777 ; Works, There is not a human sorrow in which He cannot vol i., p. 61.
sympathise, yet this one being more in accordance
We are sin. "
with His mind than any other, we may the more you. He pitied all erring ones and knew how they boldly claim a rich supply from His treasury of would go astray when He paid the penalty for their comfort.
Consider (also) thyself lest thou be tempted" Often in this sorrow we are dependent solely on (Gal. vi. 1). The sin which is such a trouble to you Christ to comfort, for it is one over which a needful would very likely have been committed by you if veil has frequently to be drawn. Our love and our placed in circumstances favourable to its developpride equally forbid our seeking consolation from ment. The germ of all sin is in each human heart. human friends. To Him alone can we take this Satan only chooses different temptations to suit burden and then we learn, as we rever did before, different temperaments, and one sin is not worse in what His sympathy is. When all is dark around, the sight of God than another. and thoughts from which we cannot escape throng By this very sorrow God is teaching you what into our minds until every nerve seems on the rack, He could in no other way, educating you, and drawthen He reveals His love as at no other time, our ing you nearer to Himself. He will not spare you storm-tossed hearts lie down and rest in it, and suffering, if it is for your profit (Heb. xii. 10). though in the midst of the furnace we are in green This education is also a gift and a talent, for which pastures, for He is there. Thus this sorrow, the you will have to render an account. It is a gift bitterest of all in itself, contains with Christ in it a which will enable you to reach other hearts bowed special element of sweetness, for it is a Fellowship of down with the same trouble, and to pass on to them Suffering, a Bond of Union with Him: His enemy the same comfort whereby you yourselves are comis our enemy; our yearning His yearning; our forted of God (2 Cor. i. 4). It is a trust, not to waiting, His waiting also “ to be gracious" (Isa. keep to yourself, but thus to make use of, and
, xxx. 18).
perhaps be thereby the means of leading others to Next to our own personal salvation, this sorrow the God of all comfort. brings us to prayer as nothing else does. We have In God's wondrous school of sorrow He may
call pleaded in vain with our dear one and now nothing you to an advanced class, where there are difficult remains but pleading for him. We can only use problems only to be fully understood in eternity. the “grand old way," grand in its simplicity, in its “What I do thou knowest not now, but thou shalt directness, and in its power “ round by Heaven.” know hereafter” (John xiii. 7), are our Lord's own Only hearts who have thus prayed can know its words. So do not faint, but take the sweet rest calming influence, or the full meaning of the promise of the thought, “Thou knowest," until “ the day “ He shall sustain thee” (Ps. lv. 22). It is an dawn and the shadows flee away,” when, instead often-recurring burden, but again and again we may of “seeing through a glass darkly," we shall "see cast it on the Lord until it " lodges there."
face to face” (1 Cor. xiii. 12), and when we shall There may sometimes be a temptation in such have the answer to every believing prayer for the sorrow to feel hard and bitter toward the cause of sinful or sorrowing. However hopeless your grief it. But this is not Christlike. We cannot enjoy may seem, " I know that even now whatsoever thou fellowship with Him while indulging in such a wilt ask of God, He will give it thee " in His own spirit. The great remedy is prayer, for God only good time and way (Johın xi. 22). There is no case can remove it. Pray for your dear one and the too far gone for Him who raised up the dead when bitterness will not last long. Consider what his he had been in the grave four days, and who healed case is in the sight of God : how miserable he must the sick man when he had been “a long time in be at heart, with an uneasy conscience : “There is that case” (John v. 6). no peace, saith )
, Compare, in a spirit of humility and thankfulness, Christ now, you shall have the Fellowship of Joy any spiritual blessings you have received, with what with Him hereafter, when you shall see the answer you would have been without them ; above all, to your prayers, and when He shall say, "Rejoice what would you do were there no throne of grace with me, for he who was dead is alive again ; he whereto you may continually resort, and your heart who was lost is found” (Luke xv. 32). will soon be softened into love and pity. Pity is
A. M. V. Christlike. He pitied you when He died to save
my God, to the wicked” (Isa. Ivii
. Having had the Fellowship of Suffering with
kept in lowly, godly fear before Him, watching for
the indications of His will in all things. For The PROMOTION OF PRACTICAL HOLINESS.
The methods which we propose to adopt will be JULY 24-29, 1882.
the same in principle as those which we have found EIGHTII ANNUAL INVITATION.
to work so well in former years. We desire that It is our great privilege, as God's servants, in there should be the fullest liberty in the mode of dependence on His Holy Will and guidance, which conducting our meetings, consistent with the Aposwe have sought in earnest prayer, to invite God's tolic rule, “ Let all things be done decently and in children once more to meet with us at Keswick, in order” (1 Cor. xiv. 40). the week beginning July 24th, and to wait upon Him Programmes will be issued as soon as possible, during the successive days of that weck, for a re- with the hours of meetings and the names of the newal to us of the mercies which He has promised speakers expected to take part. to those who trust in Him and obey Him.
Full information as to lodgings and accommodaFrom the experience now of the last seven years, tion for visitors will be given by Mr. J. POSTLEno less than from the assurance of His Word, we THWAITE, Eskin Place, Keswick, to all who apply can testify “how good” as well as “how pleasant to him by letter for this purpose. it is for brethren to dwell together in unity” (Ps. It is recommended that early application should cxxxiii. 1).
be made, as it is expected that there will be large We would again thus meet, if the Lord will, demands upon the limited resources of the town. and keep our Feast of Tabernacles before Him Full particulars should be given by those who apply, (Deut. xvi.); “ teaching and admonishing one
as the number of rooms wanted, situation, character another" (Col. iii. 16); endeavouring to find out of accommodation, &c. God's will more clearly in regard to our Sanctifi
T. D. HARFORD BATTERSBY, cation, and desiring to surrender ourselves to that
St. John's Parsonage, Keswick. loving Will which we believe to be the one great
ROBERT WILSON, source of Peace and Holiness to men.
Broughton Grange, Carlisle. These are eminently days of Revival and Reconse- June 12th, 1882. cration to God, and we thank Him for it. The Church seems everywhere, in portions at least of its
“ LET MY BELOVED COME INTO HIS membership, to be waking up from slumber, and
GARDEN, AND EAT HIS PLEASANT putting on her beautiful garments to meet Her
FRUITS.”—Cant. iv. 16. Coming Bridegroom. The song of triumph and the
They do not deny that the fruits of grace in their shout of praise are much more heard, thank God, in souls are " pleasant," they do not question their worthe ranks of Christ's soldiery, than in times past thiness to receive such a Guest; but in the intense which any of us can remember, and we hail these longings of their souls after closer communion with signs with great joy. We desire to share more Him, they gladly invite Him to come in—" Let fully for ourselves, and to bring others to share in, humility to deny the great things which God hath these triumphs and these joys. But we are also not
wrought in us. Thus we read that Paul declared insensible to the perils which accompany a period particularly what things God had wrought by his like this, and how ready Satan is to mislead God's ministry (Acts xxi. 19); and, in writing to Philemon saints and corrupt their faith, by the introduction of (ver. 6), he says, “ That the communication of thy error in doctrine, or novelties in practice, and we every good thing that is in you in Christ Jesus”
faith may become effectual by the acknowledging of feel how much we need the spiritual knowledge and (Ps. xlvi. 16; 1 Cor. xv. 10). It only becomes us judgment necessary to “discern things that differ,” most carefully to see that we call the garden “His” and to keep us from extravagances of thought or and the fruits "His," disclaiming anything like
“ action. We therefore earnestly ask our brethren merit or aught that is good in ourselves. “Let My
Beloved come and sisters in Christ to pray for us, that whilst above fruits." They are His ; let Him have all the glory;
into His garden, and eat His pleasant all things anxious for the fire of Divine love and let Him accept and use them, and be glorified and power to infuse itself into our souls, and to carry us satisfied in them (John xi. 8).—The Song of Solomon all to a higher level of spiritual life, we may also be compared with other parts of Scripture.
TOUCHES OF BLESSING.
4. Power-no shortening of the Divine power. (MARK VIII. 22. 26.)
5. Wonderful revelations of the love of God. This is a case which differs from all others in the How are we to obtain a perfect illumination ? Do way of healing. We seldom find two persons we like that expression ? Is it pleasant to be told blessed exactly alike. By this we may learn not to that we do not see perfectly with our human sight trust to the experience of others but to Christ alone. This poor man is conscious of his imperfections. If Many experience failure in their Christian walk you are conscious also of your imperfections this because they seek to be like others ; Satan would shows you need a second touch. But you can rehave us do so in order to keep us looking away ceive this second blessing only on certain conditions. from Christ. Notice the means used to convey a You must be ready to yield yourself wholly to Him blessing to the blind man. “ They bring a blind without any bias or any conditions of your own. man unto Him.” Do not be afraid of hearing the There must not be the slightest “keeping back” of testimony of others, if they have got something you any known sin. You must be ready to be nothing, have not ; let them take you to Jesus, and you will both in yourself and in the sight of others, that
; be safe with m.
“God may be all in all,” yea, even to be “counted Verse 23. “ He led him." He who would be a fool for Christ's sake." In short, you must be an Blessed by Christ must be led by Christ. Look at empty vessel, the blind man's experience. He was blind, not
“ Empty that He might fill me." possessed as some others had been who were brought Lastly, let us notice that the blessing was receivel to Christ, only simply in darkness. How frequently by the blind man in a most repulsive way—“He we meet with such persons now. They are kind, spit on his eyes.” How often it is that the most amiable, charitable, and in the eyes of the world despised means are afterwards prized as having been all that could be wished ; but talk to them of justi- the channel of great spiritual blessing. Yield up fication, the forgiveness of sins, entire sanctification, your prejudices and your heart to be searched by they are in the dark, “having a form of godliness, Jesus, and your imperfect knowledge for more knowbut denying the power thereof." The first touch ledge.
J. N. BEVAN. brought partial illumination to the blind man. Tunbridge Wells. “ He asked him if he saw aught,
and he said, I see men as trees walking." He saw Christ partially, indistinctly; for surely his first look must
THE PATH OF VICTORY. have been at Jesus. There was a good deal of mental confusion. Most are like this till they get with gladness, and come before his presence with a song.
O be joyful in the Lord, all ye lands; serve the Lord hold of a second blessing. Another touch from Ps, c. 1. Jesus is needed to perfect our sight and to lead us Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith.-Heb. xii. 2. to see still higher things. This man was startled There is no more beautiful sight, or one that by alarming exaggerations, "men as trees walking." affords a more vivid picture of confiding trust, than
| His vision was imperfect. Are we content with the that of a joyous child with a tender Father. Persame imperfect sight? It was so with Elisha's ser- fectly fearless, for has he not hold of that protecting vant until the Lord “opened his eyes," and then hand ?-perfectly happy, for can he not gaze on that he saw " horses” and “chariots of fire ” (2 Kings loving face ?—he springs along, every motion telling vi. 17). We need a second touch which will heal of joy, feeling each glad sensation of air and sunour unbelief and enable us to realise the will of God shine doubly sweet because of having at his side a in everything. Have you little rest, joy, or peace ? Father into whose fond and listening ear he can Then come to Jesus for a second touch, for you need pour all the fulness of his heart's gladness. This is it; and in the plenitude of the Holy Spirit, what the attitude of mind which the Lord calls all His will you see?
believing servants to assume towards Himself ; it is 1. Jesus.
not His will that any one of His redeemed should 2. Sweet fields of promises.
ever come before His presence save with joy and 3. The manifestation of the power of God to be gladness of heart, and yet there are saved souls greater.
every where to be found who know little or nothing
of such gladness, and who, walking in semi-darkness finish to His marvellous work of redemption ! Take themselves, shed no light on the path of others, it in every halting believer: you have Him as the no joy on their own; yet, they recognise Jesus as the Author of your faith, now let Him be the Finisher Author of any faith they possess, though daily in of it: Fear Satan no longer. He is now a vandoubt as to their interest in His atoning blood; first quished enemy, and a thrust from the sword of the because of the small and transient love they feel, and Spirit, even the word of God, must always keep secondly, because of the daily sense of recurring sin him so: practically His power is over; and sin in thought, word, and deed. With such people, though present) may not have dominion over you. courage has drooped, energy has flagged, and what Herein lies the great secret of a believer's rest. Sin wonder if estrangement from God has followed ! must ever grieve him, in any form or shape, as a It
may be they hold the hand of Jesus, but with failure in love to the great Sin-bearer ; but never a feeble grasp, and, unlike the happy child, they again need it make him hopeless, and never again never dare to look up confidingly into His face. need he have to meet it helpless. Do I hear someone
Now to revive such feeble believers, and, if it may say, “Oh, that I had such an experience ! but it be, bring them into happy and confiding relationship seems far from me; my mind fails it grasp it"? My to their Heavenly Father, is the object of these pages, friend, hear the inspired words of St. Paul on this which are sent forth with humble prayer that their natter: “Know ye not that Jesus Christ is in you, mission may not be fruitless. It seems to the writer except ye be reprobates ” (2 Cor. xiii. 5). This is no that a misapprehension of God's plan with regard to mystical announcement, neither does it depend on the existence of sin lies at the bottom of the subject feelings in any way. It is simply a question of “Do we are now considering. It is therefore of the you,” or “ Do ye not,” believe it? If you do, ever so utmost importance to recognise as a fact, at once faintly, imitate the example of David (Ps. lv. 17), and definitely, that God has nowhere promised to and cry unto God evening, and morning, and His people deliverance from the presence of sin until at noon, ceasing not to implore Him to drive away they lose it for ever in His own immediate presence. every lurking unbelief that may be hindering the For want of recognising this fact, many souls are Holy Spirit in His blessed action within your soul, made sad whom God hath not made sad (Ezekiel and preventing Him from guiding you into the xiii. 22), and Satan, like a false prophet, represents especial truth about this wondrous indwelling. Him to such as a tyrannous master, requiring holi- Tell Him that you are ignorant of Christ as the ness from hearts whose nature and property is sinful, porrer over remaining sin, but long for Him to reign without making any provision for it. If Satan gets in your soul. Wait not until you understand what man to believe this falsehood, what wonder that you are asking for. Do it as a bare act of obedience; man, finding in himself a corrupt nature, one utterly and be content to wait patiently, should the answer incapable of the smallest leaning towards God, be delayed. Rest assured that God will honour becomes aghast and paralysed at the hopelessness of such waiting. Doth He not say of him that behis situation! But what a travesty is this on the lieveth, “He shall not make haste” (Isa. xxviii. character of our glorious Redeemer; the perfection 16); not from want of carnestness in the petition, of whose work of restoration towards our fallen race but that believing Christ to be the Author, he does not end with His being the Author of any faith depends on Him to be also in His own time and we possess, but equally, and as entirely, the Finisher way, and by the power of His indwelling Spirit, the of it; and mightily as He has worked in the first Finisher of his faith. Obedience to God commands
. capacity by delivering from the penalty of sin success. Hear what His word says about this (Acts through His death, He is not less mighty in dealing v. 32): “The Holy Ghost whom God hath given.” with the remaining power of it in every soul that But to whom? “To them that obey Him." To a receives Him, not now as the Author (that is under- soul brought thus far, what may not such calm stood), but as the Finisher of their faith, teaching waiting trust reveal of the long-suffering of Jesus, every soul that will listen, how He is even now gleams of His love silently floating in may also within them (2 Cor. xiii. 5), an abiding inhabitant penetrate it with a deep sense of its own unworthiof their body; dwelling there for the sole purpose ness; thus producing a responsive love, which alone of keeping Satan a conquered foe. Oh what a glorious' can make service a happy thing; for it is a truth