“But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth.” -- 2 Thess. 2:13
Election means that the destiny of men is in the hands of God. Many of us have regarded as an axiom the statement that every man's destiny is in his own hands. But this is to deny the whole tenor of Scripture. At no time is the destiny of the saint in his own hands, either before or after he is saved. Was my destiny in my own hands before I was saved? If so, I regenerated myself; I resurrected, by my own power, myself out of a state of sin and death; I am my own benefactor and have nobody to thank but myself for being alive and saved. Perish such a thought! By the grace of God I am what I am. (John 1:13; Eph. 2:1-10; II Tim. 1:9; James 1:18). Is my destiny in my own hands now? Then I will either keep myself saved or I will lose my salvation. The Bible says we are kept by the power of God through Faith (I Peter 1:15; Ps. 37:28; John 10:27-29; Phil. 1:6; Heb. 13:5). If my destiny is not safe in my own hands after I am saved then how could it be thought to be safe in my own hands before my conversion? The saint dies, his body is consigned to the grave and becomes a dust-heap. Is his destiny in his own hands then? If so, what hope has he of ever coming out of the grave with an immortal and incorruptible body? None at all if his destiny is in his own hands. Such a theory, that the destiny of the saint is or ever has been in his own hands, reverses the very laws of nature and implies that water can rise above the level of its source; that man can lift himself into the attic by his boot-straps; that the Ethiopian can change his color, and the leopard can remove his spots; that death can beget life; that evolution is true and God is a liar. The theory that one's destiny is in his own hands begets self-confidence and self-righteousness; the belief that destiny is in the hands of God begets SELF-RENUNCIATION AND FAITH IN GOD. – C.D. Cole, Kentucky, 1885-1968
“Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting . . .” – Ephesians 5:4
Spiritual growth and the opportunity to exhort and encourage others in this warfare can be hindered by both EXCESSIVE JESTING and FOOLISH TALKING (Eph. 5:4). Humor and joy is to be commended to a point, but if it occupies our time and communion overmuch it is detrimental and should be curbed. There is a time and place for all things. Let us be WISE and SOBER without trying to impress through false piety. Those who are given to too much foolishness should suppress it while those given to melancholy should learn to smile. – Henry Mahan
“O Ye Of Little Faith”
The Lord gently rebuked His disciples for having ‘little faith.’ They needed the rebuke and so do we. After all they heard and saw from the Lord, and yet they still did not believe Him and trust Him as they should. How often did they hear His powerful voice, full of wisdom and wonder; how often did they see everything He said come to pass? And what about all the miracles they saw? Every day they saw the Lord perform miracle after miracle, yet they still had many of the same fears and worries. And what about us?
How many years has the Lord provided for us and protected us? How often have we heard His Word, seen His glory, experienced His grace, yet have so little faith? By little faith is meant, so many doubts, fears and worries. Since faith cometh by hearing the Word of God, then little faith means we are not hearing what He says.
Why are we so quick to believe what we hear from man and not to believe our God? Why are we so fretful over what we see going on around us when He said not to look at the things that are seen, but the unseen? Why do we call upon, look to, and lean upon other poor creatures like us, rather than the all-wise and powerful Heavenly Father? O’ WE of little faith!!
Lord, we believe . . . please forgive and help us with our unbelief.