Hymn of the Day
(tune: "There Is a Fountain Filled with Blood"p.222)
Election is a truth divine,
As absolute as free;
Works ne’er can make the blessing mine;
’Tis God’s own wise decree.
Before Jehovah built the skies,
Or earth, or seas, or sun,
He chose a people for His praise,
And gave them to His Son.
Eternal was the choice of God,
A sovereign act indeed;
And Jesus, the incarnate Word,
Secures the chosen seed.
He loved and chose because He would;
Nor did His choice depend
On sinners’ work, or bad or good,
But on His sovereign mind.
Nor law, nor death, nor hell, nor sin,
Can alter His decree;
Th’elect eternal life shall win,
And all God’s glory see.
His counsel stands for ever sure,
Immortal and divine;
And justice, mercy, truth, and power,
Unite to make it mine.
Today’s Hymns: Chosen in Jesus - cb13
The Lord Is King – cb22 ~ My Heart and Voice I Raise – cb19
Special Dates: Elayna Vlastuin – 9 ~ Morgan Van Der Brink – 11
When the poor and needy seek water and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the Lord will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them. I will open rivers in high places, and fountains in the midst of the valleys: I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water. -Isaiah 41:17-18.
When we gather for public worship we come as poor and needy sinners seeking the Water of Life. Though we all have temporal needs, our true interest lies in the matters of the soul. Our need is to know and worship God. It is to be forgiven of sin and to have a sure hope in Christ. The broken cisterns of this dry and thirsty land in which we live are unable to quench our thirst. We come to that place where there is a fountain filled with blood drawn from Emmanuel’s veins. What a sweet promise we have from our Lord to meet with us and manifest his grace and glory to us. Let us prepare our hearts in prayer that He might show us a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. Rev. 22:1 -Greg Elmquist
The Lord Jesus Christ performed many miracles while upon this earth. He cast out devils, healed lepers, gave sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf; He raised the dead. While these miracles certainly proved him to be the Christ, they are also illustrations of how the Lord saves sinners. Every sinner the Lord saves, is all these things…possessed by a devil, a sinful leper, deaf, dumb, blind, and dead in sin. Salvation is a miracle of God’s sovereign grace and power. Nothing more or less can save a sinner but the power of Christ; the Word, the Truth and the Gospel. May the Lord be pleased to perform a miracle today! -Paul E. Mahan
The Lord is the strength of His people,
A fortress of salvation for His anointed one.
The Christian minister, with only one subject – CHRIST CRUCIFIED – if he should live as long as Methuselah, might still keep on preaching Jesus Christ, and Him crucified, and he would still find that the people of God would come to hear him, and never crave for a fresh subject. We have had an instance, in London, of one who has delivered an amusing lecture a thousand times, always to great multitudes; but then they were different persons every time. No one thought of going to hear him lecture upon the same subject a thousand times. But the one Christian minister may keep on, and on, and on with the same theme, Christ Jesus, Christ Jesus; the same cross, the same crown of thorns, the same bleeding wounds - from the first time that he enters his pulpit to the last when he lays down his charge; and the people may always say, and he can always feel, that the Gospel has the dew of its youth upon it, and is always fresh and ever new. -C.H. Spurgeon
The gospel is not magical, but it is miraculous. Magic is in the control of the magician. Its powers are called forth by reciting certain incantations, mixing certain substances, or convincing hidden powers to do his bidding.
But a miracle is nothing other than the extension of God’s sovereign authority into His creation to bring about something that does not follow the normal laws of physics. To us, it appears miraculous for it defies our expectations, but to God, the miracle is no more “difficult” than letting things follow their “natural course.” What we call scientific law is nothing more or less than the usual way God does things. You remove the supports of something with mass, and it falls to the ground according to the “law of gravity.” But it takes no more effort on the part of God to make a rock float than it does for Him to “let” it fall to the ground. The opening of the Red Sea did not cause God to break a sweat as though He was wrestling against some natural force. It was His word that put the Red Sea where it was and had the water lay flat, and it was His word that caused the Red Sea to open up and make safe passage for the children of Israel, then close again to destroy their enemies.
We preach the gospel for we believe it to be the power of God unto salvation. But its saving power is in God. While it is always associated with gospel preaching, gospel preaching does not guarantee that any shall be saved. The power of salvation does not flow through the preacher to the sinner, it is the work of God performed directly on those whom He chooses.
The “natural order” is for the hearers to reject it. But when it pleases God, He does not allow the natural order to continue. He imparts spiritual life to a person, and from that spiritual life, understanding and faith flow. That’s not magic, but it is a miracle. May God perform a miracle for us today! -Joe