Clarion Links
Home
Webmaster


The Clarion Herald
SURROUNDED!!

    "The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them", (Psalm 34:7).

    The most feeble believer in Jesus, however weak his faith and understanding, is as dear to the heart of God as the strongest of His children, and heir to the same inheritance as he grows in the grace and knowledge of His heavenly Father. The Lord has done and provided, everything necessary for the fullest possible enrichment and blessing of ALL those who trust in Him. As, in Christ, we are born of a royal line (Jn. 1:13); so, our heavenly Father honors us with constant care. As a body of lifeguards constantly surround a young prince - for the protection of his royal person - so, "the angel of the Lord encampeth round them that fear Him". It is most likely that a number of angels surround each of God's children with constant, vigilant watchfulness against anything that would harm us.
    According to the scriptures, God uses "good spirits" to protect His children from the malicious designs of "evil spirits", or demons
(Continued on Page 5)

RESIGNATION IN TRIAL

    "Not my will, but Thine be done!"
(Luke 22:42).

    Where was there ever resignation like this! The life of Jesus was one long martyrdom. From Bethlehem's manger to Calvary's cross, there was scarce one break in the clouds; these gathered more darkly and ominously around Him till they burst over His devoted head as He uttered His expiring cry. Yet, throughout this pilgrimage of sorrow, no murmuring accent escaped His lips. The most suffering of all suffering lives was one of uncomplaining submission.
    "Not MY will, but THY will", was the motto of this wondrous Being! When He came into the world He thus announced His advent, "Lo, I come, I delight to do THY WILL, O my God!" When He left it we hear the same prayer of blended agony and acquiescence, "0 my Father, if it be possible let this cup pass from me! NEVERTHELESS not as I WILL but as THOU WILT."
    Is this mind "also in YOU"? What are your trials in comparison with His? What the ripples of your tide of woe, compared to the waves and billows that swept over him! If He, the spotless Lamb of God, "murmured



Page - 2
The Clarion Herald The Clarion Herald

not", how can YOU murmur? HIS were the sufferings of a bosom never once darkened with the passing shadow of guilt or sin. YOUR severest sufferings are deserved, yea, infinitely less THAN deserved!
    Are you tempted to indulge in suspicions, as to God's faithfulness and love, in appointing some peculiar trial in your life? Ask yourself, WOULD JESUS HAVE DONE THIS? Should I seek to pry into "the deep things of God", when HE, in the spirit of a weaned child, was satisfied with the solution, "Even so, Father, for so it seems good in Thy sight"?
    Take that word on which our Lord pillowed His head and make it, as He did, the secret of your resignation. The sick child will take the most bitter draught from the hand of a loving father. "This cup which Thou, 0 God, giveth me to drink, shall I not drink it?" Be it mine to lie passive in the arms of His chastening love - exulting

in the assurance that all His appointments, though sovereign, are never arbitrary, but rooted in a gracious "need be". "My Father!" my covenant God! the God who "spared not His own Son"! On Thy bosom I may well hush every repining word!
    Drinking deeply of His sweet spirit of submission, you will be able to meet, even to welcome, your sorest cross saying: "Yes, Lord, all IS well, just because it is Thy blessed will. Take me, use me, chasten me, as seemeth good in Thy sight. This trial is dark; I cannot see the 'why and the wherefore' of it - but 'not my will but Thy will'. The gourd is withered; I cannot see the reason of so speedy a dissolution of the loved earthly shelter; sense and sight ask in vain why these leaves of earthly refreshment have been doomed so soon to droop in sadness and sorrow. But, it is enough. 'The Lord prepared the worm'; 'not MY will, but THY will!'
    The stricken soul honors God by thus being DUMB in the midst of dark and perplexing dealings, recognizing in these part of the needed discipline and training for a sorrow-less, sinless, deathless world; regarding every trial as a link in the chain which draws it heavenward - where the whitest robes will be found to be those here baptized with suffering, and bathed in tears!
"Arm yourselves likewise with the same mind!"
-- from "The Mind of Jesus"



Studies in I Corinthians

PAUL'S INITIAL MINISTRY AT CORINTH

Scripture Lesson: I Corinthians 2:1-5.

    INTRODUCTION: Paul has just come from Athens where the philosophical giants have rejected his message. Before this he had been hounded and persecuted from city to city. Here he has found a spiritual dearth that is rooted in philosophy, worldliness, carnality, pride and indescribable wickedness. He recalls that beginning as a basis for his present instruction concerning spiritual understanding and growth.

I. THE MESSAGE THAT PAUL PROCLAIMED.

  A. STATED NEGATIVELY: HE DID NOT COME PROCLAIMING THE FULL MYSTERY OF GOD UNTO THEM, (I Tim. 3:16).

    1. So deeply were they steeped in paganistic devices; so vainly puffed up with their intellectual pride; so totally deceived by the world-system of which Satan is the head; and so hopelessly ensnared in the bondage of sin that there was no way they could receive the gospel in all its glorious fullness without perverting it to their own advantage.

    2. Paul still could not proclaim the mystery, in its fullness, when he wrote his first Corinthian letter, (3:1-3; comp. Heb. 5:11- 14; I Pet. 2:1-5; contrast Eph. 3:1-14).

  B. STATED POSITIVELY: PAUL DETERMINED, IN HIS OWN HEART, THAT, FOR THE CORINTHIANS, HIS PROCLAMATION MUST BE EXCLUSIVELY THAT OF "JESUS CHRIST, AND HIM CRUCIFIED" - a very LIMITED message, (Gal. 6:14; Phil. 3:8; Rom. 4:25; 2 Cor. 5:15; Rom. 14:7-9).

II. THE MANNER OF PAUL'S PROCLAMATION.

    A. STATED NEGATIVELY: (vs. 1).

    1. He would not flatter their ego with high-sounding oratory or philosophical dissertations; they would probably have loved that - and flocked to his ministry.

    2. Nor would he resort to persuasive words, rooted in human wisdom, as a means of stirring their emotions, (vs. 4). This would have been resorting to carnal methods to persuade carnal men to



4
repudiate their carnality - a self-defeating and hypocritical exercise.

    3. Paul never lost consciousness of the fact that he was the SERVANT of God; he would proclaim the word in such a way as to honor his Lord and Master!

  B. POSITIVELY STATED, (vs. 3).

    1. So far as his self-confidence, in his own personal ability, was concerned, his proclamation was made:
      a. With a consciousness of his own weakness, (2 Cor. 4:6-11; 7:5, 7; 10:1, 10; 12:5-9; Gal. 4:13; 2 Cor. 11:30).
      b. With FEAR - involving:
        1) Reverence before God, (Phil. 1:12-13; Heb. 12:28-29).
        2) Fear of failure to bear an effective witness for God s glory.
        3) Fear of the kind of persecution he has faced in so many places, (Acts 18:10).
      c. And his witness was borne with "much trembling" - for he was constantly aware of his own unworthiness to bear such a message. This has ever been one outstanding characteristic of God's most useful servants through the ages, (Phil. 2:12).
    2. However, Paul's plain, simple and straight-forward proclamation of the King's message was blessed by an underlying, sustaining and overwhelming "demonstration of the Spirit and of power", (Lk. 10:17-20; Acts 28:3-6; Heb. 2:1-4; Rom. 15:19; I Thes. 1:5).
      a. Fortifying his courage.
      b. Calming his fears.
      c. Loosening his tongue to speak with divine authority.
      d. Piercing the heart-depths of his hearers with the "sword of the Spirit" which is the very Word of God!

III. THE MOTIVE UNDERLYING PAUL'S MANNER, (vs. 5).

  A. STATED NEGATIVELY: PAUL DID NOT WANT THEIR FAITH TO BE BUILT UPON A CRUMBLING FOUNDATION OF HUMAN WISDOM.

  B. RATHER, (stated positively) HE WANTED THEIR FAITH TO BE FIRMLY ROOTED, GROUNDED AND ANCHORED IN THE INEXHAUSTIBLE "POWER OF GOD"! (2 Cor. 4:7; I Pet. 1:5; 2 Cor. 6:7).

  C. THE CROSS OF CHRIST EFFECTIVELY DEMONSTRATES BOTH:

    1. The POWER of God, (1:24), and



5
    2. The WISDOM of God, (1:24).

    3. Furthermore, it still proves that "the foolishness of God" is triumphant over man's strength, (1:25).

SURROUNDED ... Continued

    Jacob was guarded by a host of angels, (Gen. 32:1-2). It was through the instrumentality of an angel that Daniel was delivered from the mouth of lions, and Peter from prison, (Dan. 6:22; Acts 12:7) Though we may not be sensible to an angelic presence around us, it is there nevertheless. Unfortunately, we are not conscious of HALF the blessings which the Father so richly lavishes upon us!

    Nor do angels come as mere sight-seers; they give constant attention to our needs. They are ever ready to serve the weakest and most helpless of God's children, (Heb. 1:14). Let the enemy do his worst; his darts cannot harm us so long as we abide in the centre of such an encampment, (Isa. 41:11). Angels are our divinely-appointed servants - to help us in every possible way. They oppose all our enemies, fight all our battles, guard us in the field and, when our warfare is complete, escort us triumphantly to our Father's house, (Lk. 16:22).

    Without exception, the angel of the Lord DELIVERS those who reverence His name, (2 Kings 6:16-17). God's holy ones, cleansed by the blood of Jesus and clothed in His perfect righteousness by faith, are SAFELY KEPT! Our guard never sleeps, (Psa. 121:3-4).

    OUGHT WE NOT TO LOVE, HONOR, CHERISH AND OBEY the Father Who so loves and provides for His dear children?


ONWARD, CHRISTIAN!


Onward, Christian, though the region
    Where thou art be drear and lone;
God has set a guardian legion
    Very near thee; press thou on.

By the thorn-road, and none other,
    Is the mount of vision won;
Tread it without shrinking, brother;
  Jesus trod it; press thou on.

Be this world the wiser, stronger,
    For thy life of pain and peace;
While it needs thee, oh, no longer
    Pray thou for thy quick release.

Pray thou, Christian, daily rather,
    That thou be a faithful son;
By the prayer of Jesus, "Father,
    Not my will, but thine, be done!"


ABOMINABLE BEFORE GOD!

    The SACRIFICE of the wicked, as well as his way, is abominable to the Lord; but He loves the one who follows after righteousness - delighting in his prayers, (Prov. 15:8-9).
    Hypocrites try to cover their sins by offering some gift to God who is offended thereby. No one can please Him who is an enemy of His justice, authority and grace.
    Why not FORSAKE YOUR SIN and be a Friend of God?



"AND HE SHALL REIGN"

    Few human rulers possess the qualifications needed to rule well, but the King of Zion knows no lack.
    Is it desirable that a ruler should be WISE? Then Jesus best meets the need; for "in him are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge", (Col. 2:3). Greater than Solomon, or the sages of all times, He is the very personification of wisdom.
    Is it desirable that a ruler should be GOOD? The life and death of the Son of Man bespeak goodness with which no other is
worthy of comparison! (Acts 10:38; Jn. 10:11).
    Is it desirable that a ruler should be POWERFUL? Then to our Mediatorial King belongs ALL POWER, both in heaven and on earth! (Matt. 28:18). He is well able, both to establish and sustain, a universal and everlasting kingdom of rightsousness. ALL the stores of nature and of grace are at His command.
    The "kingdoms of this world" (or age) shall ultimately be subdued to the rightful lordship of Him by whom and for whom "all things consist". And His rule shall be characterized by righteousness, justice, equity and peace - real, lasting, undisturbed peace.
    Jesus Christ has done a work for ALL MEN, in that he "died for all". To such as have entrusted their lives into His hands, he has wrought an INWARD transformation. Even now He enables us, to the extent that we lay hold upon His adequate grace, to REIGN over all that is earthy, sensual and devilish - so that we need not be contaminated by it. We may be conscious of inward sin; we may even groan under it and mourn over it; but, it "shall not have dominion" over us, for we are "not under law but under grace", (Rom. 6:14).
    Grace is glory begun, and glory is grace perfected. How amiable and lovely will the saints appear when restored to the likeness of our dear Lord! Royally clothed in the spotless robes of His righteousness, and exalted to share His very power and deity, our joy will then be COMPLETE! (Rev. 1:5-6; I John 3:2).