GOD IS WHAT IS BEST FOR YOU – John Piper
If God is to love you, what must he give you? He must give you what is best for you. And the best thing in all the universe is God. If he were to give you all health, the best job, the best spouse, the best computer, the best vacations, and the best success in any realm, and yet withhold himself, then he would amount in the end to hating you. But if he gives you himself, even if nothing besides, he loves you infinitely. We must have God for our enjoyment if God is to be loving to us. Now Lewis has said that if God gives you himself to enjoy for all eternity, that joy will not come to consummation until you express it in praise. Therefore, for God to love you fully, he cannot be indifferent to whether you bring your joy to consummation through praise or not. Therefore, God must seek our praise if we are to be loved by him. Let me run that by you one more time. That’s the essence of my life message. And I believe it’s at the heart of the Bible: To love you, God must give you what is best for you. God is what is best for you. “In your presence is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures evermore” (Ps. 16:11). God gives himself to us for our pleasure. But Lewis has shown us that unless those pleasures find expression in praise to God, the pleasures are restricted. And therefore, God, not wanting to restrict your pleasure in any way, says, “Praise me. In everything you do, praise me. In everything you do, exalt me. In everything you do, have a passion for my supremacy”—which simply means that God’s passion to be glorified and your passion to be satisfied are not at odds. They come together. God is most glorified in you when you are most satisfied in him.
GOD STEEK HOMSELF NIE WEG VIR ONS NIE – Albert Theron
Die mens is gemaak deur God én vir God. Ons is geskape na Sy “beeld en gelykenis”.
“En Hy het uit een bloed al die nasies van die mensdom gemaak om oor die hele aarde te woon, terwyl Hy vooraf bepaalde tye en die grense van hulle woonplek vasgestel het, sodat hulle die Here kon soek, of hulle Hom miskien kon aanraak en vind, al is Hy nie ver van elkeen van ons nie; want in Hom lewe ons, beweeg ons en is ons, soos sommige van julle digters ook gesê het: Want ons is ook sy geslag.” Hand. 17:26-28
In ‘n gevalle wêreld wat desperaat sin probeer maak uit sintuiglike data rondom ons en dikwels verwarrende subjektiewe waarnemings in die innerlike dring God steeds daarop aan dat Hy nie “ver van elkeen van ons” is nie. Dawid sê in Psalm 19 “die hemele vertel die eer van God, en die uitspansel verkondig die werk van sy hande. Die een dag stort vir die ander ‘n boodskap uit, en die een nag kondig vir die ander kennis aan”. God gee vir ons welsprekende getuienis van Sy nabyheid in die natuur, in die Skrif, in getuienis in die menslike gewete en bo alles in Sy eniggebore Seun wat ons geskiedenis binnegestap het toe Hy vlees geword het en vir ons kom sterf het. Op grond daarvan verkondig Paulus met blydskap en vrymoedigheid die boodskap: “naby jou is die woord, in jou mond en in jou hart”. En hy noem hierdie evangelieboodskap “die woord van die geloof” (Rom. 10:8). Die oomblik wat iemand Jesus se naam met geloof bely en met sy hart glo dat Jesus opgewek is uit die dode (Rom. 10:9) breek die heerlikheid van God deur en die “son van geregtigheid” gaan op met “genesing onder Sy vleuels” (Mal. 4:2). Oombliklik is God nie meer net naby nie, maar Hy leef ook binne-in hierdie nuwe dissipel van Jesus (Gal. 2:20; 1 Kor. 6:19). God is teenwoordig, Hy is naby, maar Hy leef ook in jou as jy ‘n dissipel van Jesus is en Hy wil van binne af jou hede en jou toekoms rig en verhelder. Dit is ‘n heerlike waarheid. Glo dit!
THE DESIRE TO POSSESS AND CONTROL – Austin Sparks
If you look again at Paul’s revelation of the church, the Body of Christ, you will see how he lays down the principle of dependence, interdependence, mutual dependence, and how he strikes strong blows against anything in the nature of independence, separateness. The Body is one, and no member in the Body can say to another, I have no need of you. Every member must say, I am dependent upon you. The hand cannot take the place of the foot. The whole body is constituted to demonstrate the law of dependence. That is humility. The opposite of that is striking out on your own, being a freelance and snapping your fingers at anybody and everybody else, and doing without them. That is pride, and it is deception.
Pride is shown in possession or possessiveness; that is, taking hold of things to govern them ourselves, to be in possession of them. It is the work in Adam, and it is in all of us. It is shown in the desire to have in our own possession, to have in our own power, to have under our own hand, under our own influence, and it is a terrible thing. It is in us all by nature more or less, and the ruin of the church has come along this line of men wanting to take charge, men wanting to possess, men wanting to bring their influence to bear upon things, so that the thing comes into their hold. It is the ruin of the church. It was the ruin of the race. It was the ruin of Satan.
There is nothing like that about the Lord Jesus. His was a letting go to the Lord, a letting go to the Father all the time. Listen to some of the sublime things that He said: “All that the Father gives me shall come to me…”. There is no fret about that, no strain, no hurried, feverish, excitable rushing about to get people, to get members, to build up something, to get people to join, to make a success of things: “All that the Father gives me shall come…”. It was a letting go to the Father. It is faith. That is not mere passivity, but faith in the Father. It is our inborn desire to have a sphere of power, of influence, of domination, of government, that causes us to try to get something, to get hold of something, to possess something, to see something, to have something, to see the work grow, to see a success. We are really out all the time in some way or other to bring people to our end, under our influence, to dominate them. There was nothing of that about the Lord Jesus.
HIGH-SOUNDING NONSENSE – William MacDonald
This article is especially for Christian young people who are at school or college. Every day you may sit under the instruction of unregenerate men who have no love for your Saviour or your Bible. At first, you are sure that you will not be affected by their anti-Christian teachings, but then you become caught by what I call “the illusion of the classroom.” You begin to think: “This man must know what he is talking about. After all, he is a scholar.” From this, it is an easy step to the conclusion that the Christians are a fairly ignorant lot, the elders do not know what is going on, and your parents are definitely back numbers. And how can we know that the Bible is the Word of God anyway? Listen! The Apostle Paul has a message for you:
“Be careful that nobody spoils your faith through intellectualism or highsounding-nonsense. Such stuff is at best founded on man’s ideas of the nature of the world and disregards Christ” (Col. 2:8, Phillip’s translation).
The wise Christian is not taken in by the high-sounding nonsense of modern intellectualism. He is not terrified when he is called an obscurantist. He refuses to bow at the shrine of man’s wisdom. Instead, he realizes that in Christ are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, and that since he has Christ he never needs to be ashamed of his faith. Because these teachers do not have Christ, he does not expect them to have the divine insight possessed by the humblest believers. He can listen to their teachings and calmly appraise them in the light of God’s Word. If he finds any instruction which is opposed to the Scriptures, he rejects it. He casts down human reasonings and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God and brings every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ (2 Cor. 10:5).
DIE ANTWOORD IS STEEDS JESUS – Albert Theron
“Filippus sê vir Hom: Here, toon ons die Vader, en dit is vir ons genoeg. Jesus sê vir hom: Ek is so lankal by julle, en het jy My nie geken nie, Filippus? Hy wat My gesien het, het die Vader gesien. En hoe sê jy: Toon ons die Vader?” Joh. 14:8-9
Die hele Bybel gaan oor Jesus en wil ons van aangesig tot aangesig bring met Hom (2 Kor. 3:18). Ons maak soms ons geloof so gekompliseerd en vra so baie onnodige vrae dat ons die eenvoud mis. Wat is die eenvoud van ons geloof? Die feit dat alles wat ons nodig het net in een Persoon en op een plek te vinde is. Hoe kan ons byvoorbeeld God die Vader ken en Sy karakter peil? Net deur die openbaring van Jesus in die Bybel. As ons geloofsoë oopgaan en ons “sien” Hom, het ons outomaties ook die Vader gesien. Jesus is “die afskynsel is van sy heerlikheid en die afdruksel van sy wese” (Heb. 1:3). Jy hoef nie te wonder nie en jy hoef nie verward te wees nie. Bly by die eenvoud van jou geloof. Alles wat ek en jy nodig het, is in Jesus. Net omdat jy op ‘n moeilike plek in jou lewe is, beteken dit nie die antwoord gaan skielik verander en dat daar nou ‘n ander oplossing is nie. Die antwoord is steeds Jesus. Die manier wat die Vader vir jou uitkoms gaan gee, is steeds eenvoudig deur om vir jou meer van Sy Seun te wys en te openbaar. Slegs hierdie openbaring bring geloof (Rom. 10:17) en dáárdie geloof stel jou in staat om op die branders te loop, bo die omstandighede van die lewe.
THE CROSS LEADS TO THE CRUCIFIED – F.B. Meyer
Him they compelled to go with them, that he might bear His cross. Mat. 27:32
If we may judge from the familiar way in which Mark speaks of the sons of this Cyrenian, who the soldiers brutally compelled to carry our Savior’s cross, we should infer that from this hour he became a Christian. He had little suspected such a thing in the early morning, when he left his lodging to attend to his business; but, being constrained to go to Calvary, he lingered there of his own accord through those anxious hours, and was led to feel that such a sufferer, to whom even Nature paid such homage, was worthy henceforth to receive his loyalty.
But how many of us are carrying our cross because we are compelled! There seems no alternative but to carry the dead weight of our cross with us everywhere, only wishing a hundred times each day that we might have respite. Dear soul, that cross is yet going to be the greatest blessing of your life if it lead you to the Crucified, and you find in Him what will transform it into the ladder which links earth with heaven, swaying beneath angel tread.
If Simon became a Christian, with what rapture trust he have reviewed that incident in his life! How easy it would have been to carry the cross had he known Jesus as he came to know Him afterwards! He would have needed no compelling! So if you saw the will of Jesus in your cross, and that you were carrying it with Him, how much easier it would be! But that is so. He is in it. Bear it with Him; out of the cross will fall a shower of flowers.
There is no such thing as chance in our lives. It might have seemed such that Simon was coming into Jerusalem at that moment. It was shown, however, to be part of the Eternal counsel. Dare to believe in the Divine purpose which orders your cross.
DIE GOUDSTANDAARD VIR LEIERSKAP – Albert Theron
“Hy wat die bruid het, is die bruidegom; maar die vriend van die bruidegom wat na hom staan en luister, verbly hom baie oor die stem van die bruidegom. So is dan hierdie blydskap van my volkome. Hy moet meer word, maar ek minder.” Joh. 3:29-30
Hierdie woorde van Johannes die Doper is ‘n pragtige voorbeeld van die hart van alle Nuwe Testamentiese leierskap. Dominees, pastore, ouderlinge, leraars, evangeliste of apostels is nie die bruidegom nie en durf nie die gemeente aan hulleself verbind asof hulle die bruidegom is nie. Hulle is hoogstens vriende van die bruidegom wat hulle verbly oor Sy stem wat al hoe meer prominent raak in mense se lewens. Dieselfde geld ook vir enigiemand wat ‘n pad van dissipelskap met iemand stap. Niks behoort iemand wat ‘n leierskaprol het blyer te maak as om te sien hoe Jesus meer raak in iemand se lewe en hulle minder nie. Johannes die Doper se stelling is in hierdie verband die goudstandaard vir leierskap. Een ding is glashelder duidelik wanneer ons oor leierskap/dissipelskap praat; as Jesus ‘meer word’, gaan jy ‘minder word’ en as jy ‘meer word’ gaan Jesus ‘minder word’ vir mense met wie jy ‘n pad van dissipelskap stap. Om ‘minder te word’ beteken nie dat jou verhouding met mense in enige sin skade ly of dat jy nie meer jou unieke rol in die gemeente moet vervul nie. Dit beteken liewer dat mense jou gawes en vaardighede al minder raaksien omdat hulle so oorweldig is met die lieflikheid van Jesus en Sý kosbare bedieninge aan die gemeente.
NEW HORIZONS APPEARING – C.S. Lewis
People get from books the idea that if you have married the right person you may expect to go on `being in love’ for ever. As a result, when they find they are not, they think this proves they have made a mistake and are entitled to a change -not realising that, when they have changed, the glamour will presently go out of the new love just as it went out of the old one. In this department of life, as in every other, thrills come at the beginning and do not last. The sort of thrill a boy has at the first idea of flying will not go on when he has joined the R.A.F. and is really learning to fly. The thrill you feel on first seeing some delightful place dies away when you really go to live there. Does this mean it would be better not to learn to fly and not to live in the beautiful place? By no means. In both cases, if you go through with it, the dying away of the first thrill will be compensated for by a quieter and more lasting kind of interest. What is more (and I can hardly find words to tell you how important I think this), it is just the people who are ready to submit to the loss of the thrill and settle down to the sober interest, who are then most likely to meet new thrills in some quite different direction. The man who has learned to fly and become a good pilot will suddenly discover music; the man who has settled down to live in the beauty spot will discover gardening.
This is, I think, one little part of what Christ meant by saying that a thing will not really live unless it first dies. It is simply no good trying to keep any thrill: that is the very worst thing you can do. Let the thrill go -let it die away-go on through that period of death into the quieter interest and happiness that follow -and you will find you are living in a world of new thrills all the time. But if you decide to make thrills your regular diet and try to prolong them artificially, they will all get weaker and weaker, and fewer and fewer, and you will be a bored, disillusioned old man for the rest of your life. It is because so few people understand this that you find many middle-aged men and women maundering about their lost youth, at the very age when new horizons ought to be appearing and new doors opening all round them. It is much better fun to learn to swim than to go on endlessly (and hopelessly) trying to get back the feeling you had when you first went paddling as a small boy.
ESCAPE THE SNARE OF RELIGIOUS ARTIFICIALITY – A.W. Tozer
Every man who stands to proclaim the Word should speak with something of the bold authority of the Word itself. The Bible is the book of supreme love, but it is at the same time altogether frank and downright. Its writers are invariably honest and entirely sincere. A great sense of urgency is upon everything they write. They are deeply concerned with moral decisions. Protocol is of less interest to them than the glory of God and the welfare of people. One is tempted to offer advice to the young preacher to prevent him from becoming a mere purveyor or artificial religious platitudes. One might urge him to study the best writers and speakers, to strive to be original, to look at and through things before speaking of them, to avoid cliches, to speak as men and in the language men speak; but this would be to miss the point entirely. Religious artificiality is not a technical thing but a deeply human and spiritual one. It is a disease of the soul and can only be healed by the Physician of souls. To escape the snare of artificiality it is necessary that a man enjoy a satisfying personal experience with God. He must be totally committed to Christ and deeply anointed with the Holy Spirit. Further, he must be delivered from the fear of man. The focus of his attention must be God and not men. He must let everything dear to him ride out on each sermon. He must so preach as to jeopardize his future, his ministry, even life itself. He must make God responsible for the consequences and speak as one who will not have long to speak before he is called to judgment. Then the people will know they are hearing a voice instead of a mere echo.
IS ONS WERKLIK DISSIPELS VAN JESUS? – Albert Theron
‘n Ware dissipel van Jesus is iemand wat in die mees intieme verhouding denkbaar met Jesus self, bo alle ander, leef. Dit is iemand wat Jesus se stem ken en wie se gewete aan Jesus gebind is bo alle ander op hierdie aarde. Geen gemeente, leier of leiers mag op hierdie heilige grond indring nie, maar mag hoogstens die dissipel se vertroue in hierdie verbintenis met Jesus versterk. Toe Jesus die opdrag gegee het dat Sy eerste dissipels van al die nasies dissipels moet maak, het hulle baie goed verstaan dat hulle opdrag was om mense se verhouding met JESUS te vestig en versterk. Hulle het nie probeer om mense dissipels van hulleself te maak nie. Handelinge 9 vers 1 sê Paulus het die “dissipels van die Here” vervolg, nie die dissipels van Petrus of Jakobus nie. Nadat hy self ‘n dissipel van Jesus geword het, waarsku hy in Handelinge 20 vers 30 dat daar manne sal wees wat dissipels gaan wegtrek “agter hulle aan” en in Galasiërs 4 vers 17 dat diesulkes se doel is om dissipels “vir hulleself” te laat “ywer”. Enige leier, gemeente of denominasie wat mense se gewetes aan hulleself probeer bind in plaas van aan Christus en Sy Woord is besig om dissipels “weg te trek” van Jesus af, selfs al gebruik hulle Sy naam en haal skrifte aan. Toets jou hart en maak seker dat jou gewete net aan Jesus en Sy Woord gebind is. Slegs diegene wat mense se vertroue in Jesus alleen vestig en versterk en hulle anker in Sý Woord is ware dissipelmakers. Alle ander is besig om teen God se meesterplan met die mensdom te werk, selfs al doen hulle dit in onkunde en met goeie motiewe.
WHICH IS GREATER – William MacDonald
“… which is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifies the gold?” Mat. 23:17
The scribes and Pharisees of Jesus’ day taught that if a man swore by the Temple, he wasn’t necessarily obligated to do what he promised. But if he swore by the gold of the Temple, then that was a different story. He was bound by that oath. They made the same false distinction between swearing by the altar and swearing by the sacrifice on it. The former oath could be broken; the latter was binding. The Lord told them that their sense of values was completely twisted. It is the Temple that gives the gold special value, and it is the altar that sets apart the sacrifice in a special way.
The Temple was the dwelling place of Cod on earth. The highest honor that any gold could have was to be used in that dwelling. Its connection with the House of God set it apart in a unique way. So it was with the altar and the sacrifice on it. The altar was an integral part of the divine service. No animal could be more highly honored than to be sacrificed on the altar. If animals could have ambitions, they would have all aimed for that destiny. A tourist bought an inexpensive amber necklace in a second-hand shop in Paris. He became curious when he had to pay heavy customs in New York. He went to a jeweler to have it appraised and was offered $25,000. A second jeweler offered $35,000. When he asked why it was so valuable, the jeweler put it under a magnifying glass. The tourist read, “From Napoleon Bonaparte to Josephine.” It was the name of Napoleon that made the necklace so valuable.
The application should be clear. In ourselves we are nothing and can do nothing. It is our association with the Lord and with His service that sets us apart in a special way. As Spurgeon said, “Your connection with Calvary is the most wonderful thing about you.” You may have an unusually brilliant mind. That is something to be thankful for. But remember this. It is only as that mind is used for the Lord Jesus Christ that it ever reaches its highest destiny. It is Christ that sanctifies your intellect. You may have talents for which the world is willing to pay a high price You may even think that the Church is too insignificant forthem. But it is the Church that sanctifies your talents, and not your talents that sanctify the Church. You may have bundles of money. You can hoard it, spend it on self-indulgence, or use it for the Kingdom. The greatest use to which it can be put is to spend it in furthering the cause of Christ. It is the Kingdom that sanctifies your wealth, not vice versa.
THE ETERNAL HEART SECRET OF GOD – Austin Sparks
Let us look at that word again – “Christ in you, the hope of glory.” You will notice in the context that the first chapter of the Colossian letter carries us right back into the mind and heart of God before the world was, and we are shown what was going on in the mind and heart of the Father concerning His Son. It is called “the mystery,” that is, the Divine secret. It is impressive to see that before any creative activities commenced, God was cherishing a secret in His heart, the Father had a secret, something which He had shown to no one, told to no one, a cherished secret; it related to His Son. Out of the secret of His heart concerning His Son, every activity of God proceeded, and down through the ages He was occupied in many activities, in many forms and ways, working with His secret, enshrining His secret in those many activities, in those many forms and ways of His self-expression, never giving out what the secret was, never proclaiming what was in His heart in so many words, but hiding it, hiding it within symbols and types and many things; they all enshrined a secret, “the mystery”. Then at length, in the fullness of the times, at the end of these times, He sent forth His Son, the Son of His love; then by revelation of the Holy Spirit He was pleased to make known the mystery, pleased to disclose the secret, and the first chapter of the letter to the Colossians is the matchless, incomparable unveiling of the secret of God’s heart concerning the Son of His love, what that secret was. Read it again, every fragment of it, what God’s secret was. It is all gathered up, every fragment of it, in this: “That in all things he might have the pre-eminence.” “In ALL things”; and then – and this seems to me to be the wonder of it, this is a thing which is so far beyond our comprehending – that all that, the eternal heart secret of God in its mighty meaning and outworking, was to have its beginning of realization within the individual heart of a believer. So far as the actual and practical realization of the mystery, the secret of God, is concerned, its beginning is within the heart of the individual believers. This mystery is: “Christ in you, the hope of glory.” This secret of God, this thing that God has had in His heart from eternity is: “Christ in you”.
THE RADICAL NATURE OF REPENTANCE – Chip Brogden
Repentance is a continual process of unlearning something old and embracing something new. It may be a new way of understanding God, or a new way of understanding yourself or the world around you. Repentance is not only the means through which we enter the Kingdom of God, it is also the means through which we progress in the Kingdom of God. The path of progress, of spiritual maturity, hinges upon our willingness to let go of the old ways and embrace the new ways; to rise above the lower order of things and walk in a higher order – a heavenly way, a spiritual way, as opposed to the earthly, natural, carnal way that we are so used to walking. Repentance is a continual process of agreeing with what God shows us about ourselves and then making the necessary adjustments. The Holy Spirit is intent upon making radical adjustments – to create in us a willingness to look at things differently; an eagerness to begin seeing things as God sees them, regardless of how uncomfortable that may be; to value the things that He values and let go of lesser things; to align ourselves with His Mind and Will for all things; to leave our ground altogether and come onto His ground – regardless of the consequences. Jesus said that to see His Kingdom “you must be born again.” To enter His Kingdom, He requires us to “become as little children.” That is another way of saying, “You have to start all over again. You cannot make any progress with Me so long as you cling to the old way of thinking, perceiving, understanding, and interacting. I cannot pour new wine into old wineskins because it would ruin both. You need a new wineskin – a new heart, a new mind, a new understanding of things in order to receive what I wish to give you.”
RYK IN LIEFDE – Albert Theron
“En mag die Here julle ryk en oorvloedig maak in liefde vir mekaar en vir almal..” 1 Thes. 3v12
Die rykdom wat vir God belangrik is, is rykdom in die liefde. ‘n Mens kan materieël baie welgesteld wees, maar arm in liefde. Dan is jy in werklikheid ‘n arm mens. Jy kan baie ‘godsdienstig’ wees, maar arm in liefde. Dan is jy maar steeds arm. Jy kan propvol kennis wees, maar as dit nie gestalte vind in Bybelse liefde nie is jy in werklikheid ‘n leë mens. Jy kan so baie gawes en talente hê dat mense oral ‘n ophef van jou maak, maar as jy nie ryk is in liefde nie het jou lewe geen blywende geestelike impak op enigiemand nie. Hierdie besonderse evangelie-liefde word pragtig beskryf in gedeeltes soos 1 Korinthiërs 13 verse 4 tot 7 en Galasiërs 5 vers 22. ‘n Sterk geloof in Christus sal toenemend manifesteer in hierdie soort liefde, want Hy is eintlik die Een wat in en deur ons liefhet. Min liefde wys op min geloof. Dit is die ware toets. Hoe lyk die prentjie in jou lewe? Miskien is jy volgens die wêreld se standaarde in elke area van jou lewe arm, maar weet dit; jy kán “in Christus” ryk wees in die liefde. Dan is jy werklik ryk!
PRAY AND PREVAIL – Andrew Murray
The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and wonderful results. James 5:16
When Israel had made the golden calf, Moses returned to the Lord and said, “Alas, these people have committed a terrible sin…. But now, please forgive their sin—and if not, then blot me out of the record you are keeping” (Exodus 32:31–32). That was persistence. Moses would rather have died than not have his people forgiven. When God had heard him and said He would send His angel with the people, Moses went to God again. He would not be content until, in answer to his prayer, God himself should go with them. God had said, “I will indeed do what you have asked” (Exodus 33:17). After that, in answer to Moses’ prayer “Let me see your glorious presence” (verse 18), God made His goodness pass before him. Then Moses at once began pleading, “O Lord, then please go with us” (Exodus 34:9). “Moses was up on the mountain with the LORD forty days and forty nights” (verse 28). Moses was persistent with God and prevailed. He proves that the person who truly lives near to God shares in the same power of intercession that there is in Jesus. James teaches us to pray for each other. “The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and wonderful results.” Praise God! He still waits for us to seek Him. Faith in a prayer-hearing God will make a prayer-loving Christian.
BEING AND DOING – W. Ian Thomas
This is divine vocation into which you have been redeemed, as “His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works which God has before ordained that you should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10) can only be fulfilled in the energy and power of the One who indwells you now by His Spirit, as He walked once only in the energy and power of the Father who indwelt Him through the Spirit. Of Himself He said, “I can of mine own self do nothing” (John 5:19), and of you He says, in John 15:5, “Without me you can do nothing.”
How much can you do without Him? Nothing! It is amazing how busy you can be doing nothing! Did you ever find that out? “The flesh”, everything that you do apart from Him, “profits nothing” (John 6:63), and there is always the awful possibility, if you do not discover this principle, that you may spend a lifetime in the service of Jesus Christ doing nothing! You would not be the first, and you would not be the last but that, above everything else, we must seek to avoid! So you discover that the life which you possess as a born-again Christian is of Him, and it is to Him, and every moment that you are here on earth it must be through Him of Him, through Him, to Him all things! “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice” (Romans 12:1). The Lord Jesus Christ claims the use of your body, your whole being, your complete personality so that as you give yourself to Him through the eternal Spirit, He may give Himself to you through the eternal Spirit, that all your activity as a human being on earth may be His activity in and through you; that every step you take, every word you speak, everything you do, everything you are, may be an expression of the Son of God, in you as man. If it is of Him and through Him and to Him, where do you come in? You do not! That is just where you go out! That is what Paul meant when he said, “For me to live is Christ” (Philippians 1:21). The only Person whom God credits with the right to live in you is Jesus Christ; so reckon yourself to be dead to all that you are apart from what He is, and alive unto God only in all that you are because of what He is (Romans 6:1 1). It is for you to BE it is for Him to DO! Rest fully available to the Saving Life of Christ.
JESUS HIMSELF IS THE CONSTANT SUPPLY – A.B. Simpson
I prayed a long time to get sanctified, and sometimes I thought I had it. On one occasion I felt something, and I held on with a desperate grip for fear I should lose it, and kept awake the whole night fearing it would go, and, of course, it went with the next sensation and the next mood. Of course, I lost it because I did not hold on to Him. I had been taking a little water from the reservoir, when I might have all the time received from Him fullness through the open channels. I went to meetings and heard people speak of joy. I even thought I had the joy, but I did not keep it because I had not Himself as my joy. At last He said to me – Oh so tenderly – “My child, just take Me, and let Me be in you the constant supply of all this, Myself.” And when at last I got my eyes off my sanctification, and my experience of it, and just placed them on the Christ in me, I found, instead of an experience, the Christ larger than the moment’s need, the Christ that had all that I should ever need who was given to me at once, and for ever! And when I thus saw Him, it was such rest; it was all right, and right for ever. For I had not only what I could hold that little hour, but also in Him, all that I should need the next and the next and so on, until sometimes I get a glimpse of what it will be a million years afterwards, when we shall “shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of our Father” (Matt. 13: 43), and have “all the fullness of God.”
RAAD WAT VELE ERGERNIS KAN VOORKOM – Albert Theron
“So dan, my geliefde broeders, elke mens moet gou wees om te hoor, stadig om te praat, stadig om toornig te word.” Jakobus 1:19 (OAV)
“My liewe broers, dít moet julle in gedagte hou: elke mens moet maar te gewillig wees om te luister, nie te gou praat nie en nie te gou kwaad word nie.” Jakobus 1:19 (NAV)
Die wat te gou praat, hoor ook gewoonlik nie mooi wat ander sê nie en dit lei dikwels tot misverstande en kwade gevoelens. Dis moeilik om na ander te luister terwyl jou ore gebombardeer word met die stringe woorde wat uit jou eie mond kom. Die persoon wat dink voor hy praat, het al klaar die grootste deel van praktiese wysheid ingewin en die een wat praat voor hy dink, het reeds ingedraai op die pad van die dwaas. Stadig om te hoor en gou om te praat en kwaad te word, dit som die lewe van die dwaas op en sy pad is gesaai met onnodige ergernis. As ons daarenteen werklik luister na wat ander mense sê, stadig is om ‘n oordeel te fel met haastige woorde en stadig om op ons perdjie te spring as daar net iets is wat klink of dit nie inpas by ons persoonlike verwysingsraamwerk nie, kan ons vele ergernis in die gang van ons daaglikse lewens vermy. Boonop gaan ons met hierdie ingesteldheid ‘n vertoonvenster wees van Christus en ‘n voorbeeld stel wat die deur wyd oopmaak vir die goeie nuus van verlossing in Jesus. Dit is in elk geval mos net in en deur Hóm wat ons die soort ingesteldheid kan kweek waarvan Jakobus hier praat. Om te praat van Jesus moet ons wees soos Jesus en om te wees soos Jesus moet ons ruimte maak vir Hom om deur ons te leef.
THE GOSPEL IS NOT A MYTH – Kevin DeYoung
The Greek word mythos is always used negatively in the New Testament (see 1 Tim. 1:4; 4:7; 2 Tim. 4:4; Titus 1:14). Myth is seen as the opposite of truth. “For the time is coming,” Paul warns, “when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths” (2 Tim. 4:3–4). For the biblical writers, there is myth on one side and truth on the other, and the Bible clearly belongs with the latter. Even if it is argued that the liberal definition of myth is not exactly what the New Testament is condemning when it critiques “myths,” you still can’t get around the logic of 2 Peter 1:16. In referencing his role as an eyewitness, Peter wants everyone to know that the Jesus story—the transfiguration primarily, but presumably also the rest of the gospel story he passed down—is in the category of historical, verifiable fact, not impressions, or inner experiences, or stories invented to make a point. The Greeks and Romans had lots of myths. They didn’t care whether the stories were literally true. No one was interested in the historical evidence for the claim that Hercules was the illegitimate son of Zeus. It was a myth, a fable, a tall tale, a story to entertain and make sense of the world. Paganism was built on the power of mythology, but Christianity, like the Jewish faith from which it sprang, saw itself as an entirely different kind of religion. This cannot be stated too strongly: From the very beginning, Christianity tied itself to history. The most important claims of Christianity are historical claims, and on the facts of history the Christian religion must stand or fall. Luke followed all things closely, researched things carefully, and relied on eyewitnesses so that Theophilus could have “certainty” about the gospel story (Luke 1:1–4). John wrote about the wonders Jesus performed so that his audience would accept the miracles, understand the signs, believe that Jesus is the Christ, and have life in his name (John 20:31). All four Gospel writers are eager for us to know that, though some were spreading rumors that Christ’s body had been stolen after his crucifixion, the tomb was really empty because Jesus had really been raised. If Christ wasn’t raised, said Paul, the whole Christian religion is a sham and those who believe in it are pitiable fools (1 Cor. 15:14–19). To discount history is to live in a different world from the one that the biblical authors inhabit.
GOD HAS SPOKEN DECISIVELY AND FINALLY IN HIS SON – Kevin DeYoung
As a king, Christ is already seated on the throne and already reigns from heaven, but the inauguration of his kingdom is not the same as the consummation of it. There are still enemies to subdue under his feet (Heb. 2:8). As a priest, Christ has fully paid for all our sins with his precious blood, once for all, never to be repeated again. And yet, this great salvation must still be freely offered, and Christ must keep us in it (Heb. 2:3). Finally, as a prophet, God has decisively spoken in his Son. He has shown us all we need to know, believe, and do. There is nothing more to say. And yet, God keeps speaking through what he has already said. “The word of God is living and active” (Heb. 4:12); and when the Scriptures are read, the Holy Spirit still speaks (3:7). So, yes, God still speaks. He is not silent. He communicates with us personally and directly. But this ongoing speech is not ongoing revelation. “The Holy Spirit no longer reveals any new doctrines but takes everything from Christ (John 16:14),” Bavinck writes. “In Christ God’s revelation has been completed.” In these last days, God speaks to us not by many and various ways, but in one way, through his Son. And he speaks through his Son by the revelation of the Son’s redeeming work that we find first predicted and prefigured in the Old Testament, then recorded in the Gospels, and finally unpacked by the Spirit through the apostles in the rest of the New Testament. Scripture is enough because the work of Christ is enough. They stand or fall together. The Son’s redemption and the Son’s revelation must both be sufficient. And as such, there is nothing more to be done and nothing more to be known for our salvation and for our Christian walk than what we see and know about Christ and through Christ in his Spirit’s book.
VERWORWE IMMUNITEITSGEBREKSINDROOM – Albert Theron
“Self weet ek dat daar ná my vertrek wrede wolwe onder julle sal indring, en hulle sal die kudde nie spaar nie. Selfs uit julle eie geledere sal daar mense na vore kom wat, deur verdraaide dinge te verkondig, die gelowiges sal probeer verlei om hulle te volg. Daarom: Wakkerloop! Onthou dat ek vir drie jaar lank sonder ophou vir elkeen van julle die regte koers aangedui het, dag en nag, en met trane.” Hand. 20:29-31 (NLV)
Kan ons nie net glo soos kindertjies en alles vir soetkoek opeet wat lyk soos ‘n geestelike boodskap of wat vir ons van kansels en deur die massamedia opgedis word nie? Kan ons nie maar net kerktradisies en denominasionele dogma heel insluk sonder om te kou nie? Die kort antwoord is, ‘nee’. Kinderlike geloof en beoordeling van waarheid staan nooit teenoor mekaar in die Bybel nie. Hoekom is dit nodig om voortdurend boodskappe te toets en te beoordeel, om te onderskei en te “waak” oor waarheid en ons eie harte soos Jesus en die apostels oor en oor beveel het? Want net soos daar ‘n menigte “goggas” is wat jou liggaam wil aftakel, is daar ‘n baie slinkse geestelike vyand wat die boodskap van die evangelie op allerhande maniere verdraai en ons wil voer met sy leuens. Ons liggame het ‘n immuunstelsel wat die “goggas” veg. Net so het God vir ons ‘n immuunstelsel gegee om geestelike “goggas” te veg. Die Woord van God wat jy in jou hart bewaar en bely met jou mond is die “swaard van die Gees” (Efes. 6:17). As jou liggaam se immuunstelsel skielik afskakel, het jy groot probleme, my vriend. Net so is dit fataal om jou geestelike immuunstelsel te verloor of te misken dat jy een nodig het. Die kerk oor die wêreld lei ongelukkig grotendeels aan geestelike VIGS (“verworwe immuniteitsgebreksindroom”) en dit raak al hoe erger. Ons moet wakker word en reguit loop, in lyn met die duidelike bakens wat vir ons gegee word in die Woord van God. Glo alles wat in die Bybel staan soos ‘n kind, met totale oorgawe en ‘n rein gemoed en bly by die eenvoud van die openbaring van Jesus (Heb. 1v1-3). Maar moenie alles wat geestelik klink of wat van kansels gepredik en geleer word glo soos ‘n kind nie. “Beproef alle dinge; behou die goeie” (1 Thes. 5:21).
GOD IS LIGHT! – Henry Jowett
“In Him is no darkness at all.” 1 John 1:5
That wonderful mansion of God’s Being is gloriously radiant in every room! In the house of my life there are dark chambers, and rooms which are only partially illumined, the other parts being in the possession of night. Some of my faculties and powers are dark ministers, and some of my moods are far from being “homes of light.” But “God is light,” and everything is glorious as the meridian sun! His holiness, His grace, His love, His mercy: there are no dark corners where uncleanness hides; everything shines with undimmed and speckless radiancy!
And if I “walk in the light,” I, too, shall become illumined. “They looked unto Him and were lightened.” We are fashioned by our highest companionships. We acquire the nature of those with whom we most constantly commune.
And the light He gives is also fire. It will burn away our sin. We may measure the reality and strength of our communion by the destruction of our sin. A great burning will be proceeding in our life, and one evil habit after another will be in the love-furnace of purification. The Lord still “purifies Jerusalem by the spirit of burning.”
GROEPSAFSLAG VIR ‘N KAARTJIE HEMEL TOE? – Albert Theron
“Hulle antwoord en sê vir Hom: Ons vader is Abraham. Jesus sê vir hulle: As julle die kinders van Abraham was, sou julle die werke van Abraham doen…toe sê hulle vir Hom: Ons is nie uit ontug gebore nie; ons het een Vader, naamlik God. En Jesus sê vir hulle: As God julle Vader was, sou julle My liefhê…” Johannes 8:39-42
Hierdie gedeelte in Johannes 8 bevat ‘n profetiese boodskap, nie net vir die Jode van die tyd nie, maar ook vir alle “godsdienstige” mense oral en vir alle tye. Die Jode het gedink omdat hulle deel was van die sogenaamde “verbondsgemeenskap” as gevolg van hulle besnydenis en omdat hulle deur natuurlike afstamming “kinders van Abraham” was dat hulle outomaties oppad was hemel toe en God as Vader gehad het. In vers 44 antwoord Jesus hulle egter met ‘n verstommende stelling, “julle het die duiwel as vader”. Wat maar net beteken dat hulle nog nie die ware wedergeboorte deur die Gees van God beleef het nie en steeds onlosmaaklik verbind was aan die “wet van die sonde en die dood” via die gevalle Adam.
Dit is net persoonlike bekering tot God en geloof in Jesus wat red. Geen verwantskap met enige groep, gemeente, denominasie, of tradisie het enige krag of vermoë om te red nie. Daar gaan nie kerke of denominasies in die hemel wees nie, net ware dissipels van Jesus. Geen ritueel of sakrament kan red nie en niemand sal God ooit sien op grond van hulle ouers of leiers se geloof nie. “Vertrou nie op prinse, op die mensekind, by wie geen heil is nie. Sy gees gaan uit, hy keer terug na sy aarde toe; op daardie dag is dit met sy planne gedaan. Welgeluksalig is hy wat die God van Jakob het as sy hulp, wie se hoop is op die Here sy God” (Ps. 146:3-5). Net die hart wat draai téén die sonde in bekering en ná Christus in geloof, onder invloed van die Heilige Gees se oortuiging deur verkondiging van die suiwer evangelie kan ooit die reddende genade van God in waarheid beleef. Maak honderd persent seker dat jou geloof in Christus alleen is. “My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness; I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly trust in Jesus’ name. On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand; all other ground is sinking sand.”
CHRIST IS THE WAY OUT – Austin Sparks
You and I with all our head knowledge, our mental knowledge of a great spiritual realm, find it a hopeless thing if in reality we are living down in this creation. Today it would be easy to despair, to drop down into things as they are. Look out into the world for prospects for the Church, prospects for the Gospel, prospects for the Lord. Look at the state of the Church itself. Bring the letter to the Ephesians down into this world! You will give it up and say: It is a wonderful conception, but impossible. Try to realise it down on this level and you beat yourself to despair. Note Paul as he looks out over the churches which he had seen brought into being and sees them breaking up, and the men for whom he had suffered turning against him. Paul would have despaired in his heart, had he been living down here. What were the prospects in such conditions? But he got up into the heavenlies in Christ Jesus and saw that this was a heavenly thing, an eternal thing. Read the Ephesian letter again and mark how it starts: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenlies in Christ; even as he chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blemish before him in love: having foreordained us unto adoption as sons through Jesus Christ unto himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of the glory of his grace, which he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved: in whom we have our redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace…” (Ephes. 1:3-7). These are the words of a man with his life work tumbling to pieces and all his old friends for whom he had sacrificed himself turning against him. What has he seen? The eternity, the universality of Christ, ALL THINGS IN CHRIST. Paul is not living in this world now, but living in Christ. It is the only way out. It is the way of life, the way of hope, the way of assurance in a day like this when things close down. Christ is the way out: “…in the heavenlies in Christ…” “…chose us in him before the foundation of the world…” Again we say; What a Christ! Let us dwell much upon the Lord Jesus, for everything for us is in Him.
PERFECT HARMONY BETWEEN THE INTELLECT AND THE HEART – Andrew Murray
If Adam had eaten of the tree of life, he would have received and known all the good God had for him in living power as an experience. And he would have known evil only by being absolutely free from it. Eve was led astray by the desire for knowledge—“a tree to be desired to make one wise” (Genesis 3:6). In this way, man got a knowledge of good without possessing it. He had a knowledge of good only from the evil that was its opposite. And since that day man has searched for truth more in knowledge than in life. It is only by experiencing God and His goodness that we can receive true knowledge. The knowledge of the intellect cannot quicken. “Though I… understand all mysteries, and all knowledge. . .and have not charity (love), I am nothing” (1 Corinthians 13:2). It is in our daily Bible reading that this danger must be met and conquered. We need the intellect to hear and understand God’s Word in its human meaning. But we need to know that the possession of the truth by the intellect can only benefit us when the Holy Spirit makes it life and truth in the heart. We need to yield our heart and wait on God in quiet submission and faith to work in us by that Spirit. As this becomes a holy habit, our intellect and heart will work in perfect harmony. Each movement of the mind will be accompanied by the corresponding movement of the heart, waiting on and listening for the teaching of the Spirit.
HARTVERSTERKER – Albert Theron
“…want dit is goed dat die hart versterk word deur genade…” Heb. 13:9
Daar is nie op hierdie aarde so iets soos ‘n hart wat nie soms op afdraaipaadjies wil stap nie. Die mees toegewyde dissipel van Jesus het “versterking van hart” nodig. Ons teks in Hebreërs 13 sê dat die hart deur “genade” versterk moet word. Daar is geen ander medisyne vir ons harte nie. Niks in jou en my lewe is belangriker as die kondisie van ons harte nie, en ek praat nie van daai vier-kamer pomp aan die linkerkant van jou borskas agter jou ribbes nie. Ons het nodig om gedurig blootgestel te word aan die boodskap van Jesus wat ons wysheid is sodat ons nie hoef te leef uit ons eie insig nie, ons geregtigheid is sodat ons nie hoef te streef om vir God aanvaarbaar te wees nie, ons heiliging is sodat ons nie uit ons eie krag hoef te probeer groei in toenemende heiligheid nie en ons verlossing is sodat ons nie nodig het om moedeloos te raak oor die toekoms nie (1 Kor. 1:30). God het “in Christus” volkome voorsiening gemaak vir alles wat jy ooit sal nodig hê. Moenie probeer leef uit jou eie wysheid en krag nie, dit gaan jou hart vir seker laat afdwaal. Leef uit ‘n hart wat gedurig onder die invloed van genade is. Dit is werklik die énigste manier om ‘n betekenisvolle lewe te leef en ‘n getuienis van Jesus se oorwinning te wees te midde van die vervallenheid en hartseer van ‘n stukkende wêreld met stukkende mense.
INVEST IN THE CAUSE OF CHRIST – William Gurnall
The Christian must practice the same indifference in keeping his earthly possessions as he did in getting them. God never signs the title of anything over to us, but merely gives us things to keep in trust. All will be left behind when He calls us home. If He sees fit to let us keep them until then, we bless and thank Him for His generosity; and if He takes them away sooner, we bless Him still. God never intended, by His providence in bringing Moses to Pharaohs’ court, to leave him there in worldly pomp and grandeur. A carnal heart would have reasoned that Moses could best help his people—slaves under Pharaoh—by using his position and power to influence the king, or perhaps even by aspiring to the throne. But when Moses renounced his place of privilege, his faith and self-denial were made more eminently conspicuous. It is for this obedient faith that Moses is given such honorable mention in the New Testament (Hebrews 11:24–25). Sometimes God lavishes us with things, not so we can hang on to them, but so we will have something to let go of to show our love for Him. Was there anything better in the whole world Mary could have done with her precious oil than to anoint her Lord? What enterprise will pay more lasting dividends than to invest what you possess in the cause of Christ?
VOL KRAG EN PLANNE – Albert Theron
“En Hy het vir my gesê: My genade is vir jou genoeg, want my krag word in swakheid volbring. Baie liewer sal ek dus in my swakhede roem, sodat die krag van Christus in my kan woon. Daarom het ek behae in swakhede, in mishandelinge, in node, in vervolginge, in benoudhede, om Christus wil. Want as ek swak is, dan is ek sterk.” 2 Kor. 12:9-10
“EINDELIK, my broeders, word kragtig in die Here en in die krag van sy sterkte.” Efes. 6:10
Ons generasie se idee van ‘n sterk mens is iemand wat vaardig is; skerp, vindingryk, “positief” en pro-aktief. Dit is iemand wat al die antwoorde het en altyd ‘n plan het, soos ‘n MacGyver wat homself uit enige moeilike situasie kan wriemel met net ‘n stukkie tou, ‘n sakdoek en ‘n paar vuurhoutjies. Die Bybel se idee van ‘n sterk mens is ‘n bietjie anders. As jy reeds aan ‘n kruishout vasgenael is, help jou vaardigheid, jou geniale insig en jou briljante kreatiwiteit nie meer nie. En dit is presies wat die Nuwe Testament leer oor dissipels van Jesus. Ons is ten volle geïdentifiseer met die kruisdood van Jesus, tot so ‘n mate dat ons natuurlike krag, wysheid, intelligensie en bronne nie eers meer in die prentjie is nie. Dít is die groot uitdaging van dissipelskap en die essensie van die geloofslewe. Sal ons kies om swak en totaal afhanklik te wees sodat Jesus in en deur ons sterk kan wees of gaan ons aanhou om te leun op die ‘arm van die vlees’ en dan verwag dat God darem net so ‘n ekstra handjie moet bysit vir die wis en die onwis? Eersgenoemde noem die Bybel die “wandel deur die Gees” en laasgenoemde die “wandel na die vlees”.
THE MARK OF OUR HEALTH – Austin Sparks
For the Church to minister to the glory of God and for the Church to be a glorious Church, the Church must have a deep – I was going to say, a terrible – sense of what the glory of God is. The glory of God, beloved, is the holiness of God, the moral excellence and perfection of God, the truth that God is, the purity that God is. It is God’s nature that is the glory of God, and to minister to God’s glory means that we must have a very acute sense of God’s holiness, so much so that anything arising which is unholy in our midst immediately becomes an agony to us, a real distress to us. It is like an evil germ that has got into the body system, and is working havoc and bringing about disorder and pain, and when a germ like that, an evil germ, gets into anything like a healthy human body, all the organism begins to work to eject it, to overcome it. That is health. Health is the power, the vitality, the energy in a body to overcome the invasion of disease, of disease germs. What is true in the physical must be true in the spiritual in the Body of Christ. The mark of our health is that, when an evil thing comes in amongst us and invades us, we in the Spirit feel it, react to it, and will not have it, strive to eject it, and make it a matter of real concern before the Lord.
GREAT JOY BASED ON THE FINISHED WORK OF CHRIST – Paul Washer
I want to talk about prayer, but then in order to talk about prayer there are other things that you have to understand and in order to talk about those things there are other things that you must understand. If I were to address anyone, address my own son about prayer I couldn’t go on to the things of prayer until one seed was solidly sown in his heart. And that is this. God is good. God is good. Now, I know you say, “Ok. Let’s go on now. Let’s learn some things about God.” No you could spend an eternity just trying to understand that God is good. And the way I see most believers live, even those that are very pious, much more devoted than I am, the lack of joy and the lack of believing that God is for them, they are so mesmerized by their own failure that they don’t even see that is not even the point. Are you expecting one day to be swallowed up in the fact that you finally know how to live the Christian life? Are you expecting one day to draw all your confidence from the fact that finally you are able to dot every i and cross every t? I mean what are you expecting, to one day arrive and then come into this great joy? You are never going to arrive and therefore you are never going to come into this great joy because the great joy doesn’t come from that. It is not your continuous work for God, but Christ’s finished work for you. And that is what you must understand.
DIE GEBED WAT NIE BAIE GEBID WORD NIE – Albert Theron
“En Hy het vir my gesê: My genade is vir jou genoeg, want my krag word in swakheid volbring. Baie liewer sal ek dus in my swakhede roem, sodat die krag van Christus in my kan woon. Daarom het ek behae in swakhede, in mishandelinge, in node, in vervolginge, in benoudhede, om Christus wil. Want as ek swak is, dan is ek sterk.” 2 Kor. 12:9-10
Die dinge waarvoor ons bid en die manier wat ons daarvoor bid is ‘n baie goeie indeks van wat in ons harte aangaan. As God vir Paulus sê ‘my krag word in swakheid volbring’ en Hy daarmee sy wil vir, en werkswyse met, al sy dissipels vir alle tye bekendmaak, het dit baie bepaalde implikasies vir ons gebedslewe. Wanneer ek deur ‘n moeilike tyd gaan, moet ek net bid dat God asseblief my omstandighede sal verander? Moet ek net bid dat Hy my daardeur sal dra? Miskien lei die Heilige Gees my om so te bid, maar as ons die hele Bybel as maatstaf neem, is dit duidelik dat die belangrikste gebed van ons harte moet wees: “Laat U krag in my swakheid volbring word”. “Verheerlik Uself en openbaar Christus in my swakheid, o Heer”. Dit is die herlewingsgebed! As ons só begin bid vir onsself en vir ander is ons in lyn met die wysheid van God en kan ons die krag van God sien deurbreek in ons omstandighede op verrassende maniere wat dalk heeltemal anders is as wat ons verwag het. Dan eers gaan ons werklik die dieper doel en groter prentjie van God se koninkryk en ons lewens begin raaksien.