Psalm 39:6 Surely every man walketh in a vain shew: surely they are disquieted in vain: he heapeth up riches, and knoweth not who shall gather them.
Psalm 39:7 And now, Lord, what wait I for? my hope is in thee.
Earth’s Vanities, And Heaven’s Verities, C.H. Spurgeon
“These are solemn words. Sometimes we have a more joyful theme than this; but I believe that, spiritually, as well as naturally, it is better to go to the house of mourning than to the house of feasting. A meditation of a quiet kind, on things not as they are in fiction, but as they prove to be in fact, is always salutary.
There is a great mass of sorrow in the world; and all of us encounter something every now and then to calm our spirit, and cool our blood. So, tonight, if we think a little of the fleeting character of this world, and of the real world where certainty alone is to be found, and if we school ourselves to learn facts and realities, by the blessing of God’s Spirit, we may go away even more lastingly refreshed than if our hearts were made to leap for joy by meditation on some transporting theme.
‘Every man walks in a vain show: but,’ he says, ‘and now, Lord, there is no vanity with you, no deception, no delusion with you, behold, I turn away from this mirage, which just now deluded me, to you my God, the Rock of my salvation, and I look to you. And now, Lord.’
I wish that someone here would say, ‘I have to spend eternity somewhere. I will not waste this present time, and live as if this world were all there is; but I will lift up my prayer tonight,” and say, ‘Now, Lord, now that I have passed my childhood, and am a young man, now that I have reached my twenty-first birthday, now that I am thirty, forty, fifty, now that my hair turns grey, it is time for me to be wise if ever, now, Lord.’
And if I am so unhappy as to have a person here who has advanced to the very end of his lease on life, and has become seventy, and yet still is living for a world that is slipping away from him, I wish that the Holy Spirit would make him say tonight, ‘And now, Lord; now I seek you, now I turn to you.’
You observe, also, that he has his eye on the future. He is a man who is waiting for something. Faith is a high virtue; and waiting on God is a flower that grows out of it. ‘What do I wait for? I have not found it yet; I am waiting for it, for here we have no continuing city, but we seek one to come.’
Our treasure is not here; it is away up there, on the eternal hills, where Christ sits at the right hand of God. The man described in our text is a waiting man, whose chief delight is now in a world that is to come.”
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Does the devil bring your past to memory and with it condemnation or torment, even though you are now a born again Christian? Be sure to know those thoughts are from the devil and not from the Lord. Here are some comforting words found, of all places, in the genealogy of Jesus Christ Matthew Chapter 1. Another hidden gem found in the Word of God.
This feature in the present genealogy – herein differing from that given by Luke – comes well from him who styles himself in his list of the Twelve, what none of the other lists do, “Matthew the publican”;
Matthew 10: 2 Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; 3 Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.
as if thereby to hold forth, at the very outset, the unsearchable riches of that grace which could not only fetch in “them that are afar off,”…
but reach down even to “publicans and harlots,” and raise them to “sit with the princes of his people.”
There are four women, and but four, named in this genealogy; two of them were originally strangers to the commonwealth of Israel, Rahab a Canaanitess, and a harlot besides, and Ruth the Moabitess;
for in Jesus Christ there is neither Greek, nor Jew; those that are strangers and foreigners are welcome, in Christ, to the citizenship of the saints.
The other two were adulteresses, Tamar and Bathsheba; which was a further mark of humiliation put upon our Lord Jesus, that not only he descended from such, but that is decent from them is particularly remarked in his genealogy, and no veil drawn over it.
He took upon him the likeness of sinful flesh (Rom 8:3), and takes even great sinners, upon their repentance, into the nearest relation to himself.
Note, We ought not to upbraid people with the scandals of their ancestors; it is what they cannot help, and has been the lot of the best, even of our Master himself.
David’s begetting Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias is taken notice of (says Dr. Whitby) to show that the crime of David, being repented to, was so far from hindering the promise made to him, that it pleased God by this very woman to fulfill it.
Matthew Chapter 1
1The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.
2Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren; 3And Judas begat Phares and Zara of Thamar; and Phares begat Esrom; and Esrom begat Aram; 4And Aram begat Aminadab; and Aminadab begat Naasson; and Naasson begat Salmon; 5And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse; 6And Jesse begat David the king; and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias; 7And Solomon begat Roboam; and Roboam begat Abia; and Abia begat Asa; 8And Asa begat Josaphat; and Josaphat begat Joram; and Joram begat Ozias; 9And Ozias begat Joatham; and Joatham begat Achaz; and Achaz begat Ezekias; 10And Ezekias begat Manasses; and Manasses begat Amon; and Amon begat Josias; 11And Josias begat Jechonias and his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babylon:
Luke 5:32 I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
Psalm 103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.
John 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
Jeremiah 8:20-22 The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt; I am black; astonishment hath taken hold on me. Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?
As salvation only can be found in the Lord, so the present moment should be seized.
Is there no medicine proper for a sick and dying kingdom?
Is there no skilful, faithful hand to apply the medicine?
Yes, God is able to help and to heal them.
If sinners die of their wounds, their blood is upon their own heads.
The blood of Christ is balm in Gilead, his Spirit is the Physician there, all-sufficient; so that the people may be healed, but will not.
Thus men die unpardoned and unchanged, for they will not come to Christ to be saved.