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    In many churches, scattered over the length & breadth of this country, special prayer went up to God last Sunday in behalf of Brother Dick Ferris. This brother labored faithfully as a missionary in Japan for something over five years. He found it necessary to leave the field (at least temporarily) due to the ill health of Sister Ferris, combined with a lack of financial support.
    Now Brother Ferris has been hospitalized. It was finally discovered that the persistent pain that had plagued him for some time was due to a tumor inside his left kidney. On October 29 the kidney was removed; the tumor was found to be malignant. Part of the tissue was sent to the VA Hospital in Washington, D.C. for analysis.
    Though I earlier received a report that the malignancy had spread (which I passed on to some others), this is a point that is a bit confused at the moment. Pastor Willie Spilman tells me that, so far as he knows, Bro. Ferris is being given regular "radium" treatments for the next two weeks only AS A PRECAUTIONARY MEASURE --- just in case the
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    It was not so much for the committing of some outrageous deed that those on the left hand of the "king" were condemned, in Matthew 25. Rather, it was for failure, simple neglect, to do what OUGHT TO HAVE BEEN DONE. They are not charged with being cruel or unkind to any of Christ's "little ones". They had wronged no one; only neglected them.
    When the "brethren" of the Lord Jesus had hungered, these (professing themselves to be saints) had not fed them; thirsty, they had not given them drink; naked, they had not clothed them; sick and imprisoned, they had not visited them. They had merely passed by on the other side. When human misery might have been relieved, they neglected to use their opportunity for good.
    Jesus Christ is deeply concerned with the treatment received by all whose hearts are abandoned to Him in faith. The responsiveness of our hearts in providing the simple day-to-day needs of those whose lives are dedicated wholly to His service is, IN REALITY, a manifestation of what our hearts FEEL FOR HIM! "I was an hungered, and ye gave ME no meat...sick, and in prison, and ye

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The Clarion Herald The Clarion Herald

visited me not ... Inasmuch as ye did it not unto one of the least of these, my brethren, ye DID IT NOT UNTO ME."
    There are times when church members will actually attempt to starve a pastor off the field by withholding their offerings. In this they act with a malicious, wicked design that is obvious even to the brethren. But, more often, the opportunity to "minister" to the needs of brethren (preachers or otherwise) is missed through simple NEGLECT. We ought to be more alert to embrace every opportunity to minister to others in Christ's name.
    One of the primary reasons for our failure in love's duty is that we simply DO NOT THINK!
    "And yet, it was never in my soul
        To play so ill a part;
    But evil is wrought by lack of
        As well as lack of heart."

Studies in the Gospels      Lesson 3

(Luke 1,26-38)
    In this lesson the angel, Gabriel, appears to Mary. She is a virgin -- unmarried, chaste, and having never entered into the intimacy of relationship with man that was divinely designed for man's reproduction "after his kind". Engaged to a young man named Joseph, both were of royal descent -- from the "house of David".
    The angelic salutation to Mary was strange & troubling. "Hail, thou that art highly favored. The Lord is with thee", (comp. Judg. 6:12; Isa. 43:5; Jer. 1:18-19; Acts 18:10). "Blessed art thou among women". This implied some unique and significant blessing. Mary was plainly troubled by the appearance and word of the heavenly messenger. She wondered what could be meant.
    Not for long was the virgin permitted to wonder. A quieting, surprising and glorious word was spoken by the angel: "Fear not, Mary; for thou hast found favor with God. And, behold: Thou shalt conceive in thy womb. .and bring forth a SON...& shalt call his name JESUS". This Saviour-deliverer shall "save His people from their sins", (Matt. 1:21; cf. Gen. 49:10; Acts 4:12; 5:31; 13:23, 38; Heb. 7:25; Rev. 1:5).
    Mary's son was to be "great"; he would be called "the Son of the Highest" -- the Son of God, (Psa. 2:6-7; Matt. 2:15; 3:17; 8:29; 14:33; 17:5; Jn. 9:35-37; 10:36; 11:27 Acts 9:20). To Him will be given "the throne of his father David",

(I Sam. 7:11; Psa. 132:11; Isa. 9:6-7; 16:6; Jer. 23:5; Rev. 3:7). Of His reign and Kingdom there will be no end, (Dan. 2:44; 7:14, 27; Obad. 21; Mic. 4:7; Jn. 12:34; Heb. l:8; I Tim. 6:15; Rev. 11:15).
    Greatly perplexed, as to how the wonderful promise might be fulfilled, Mary made an humble inquiry: "How shall this thing be, seeing I know not a man?". One thing should be quite clear from this: the popular notion that "every young virgin in Israel lived in hope of giving birth to the Messiah" has no foundation in the Word of God. Whatever may be the 20th century understanding of Isaiah 7:14, as related to the Messianic expectation in Israel, it cannot be proved that the ancient Jews ever expected that their Messiah should be virgin-born; Mary had no such understanding, as is quite obvious from her question!
    Gabriel revealed the divine plan to the virgin. The child would be conceived through the Holy Ghost as the "power of the Highest" overshadowed her. Thus, the child must be recognized as the "Son of God" -- (Matt. 14:33; 26:63-64; Mk. 1:1; Jn. 1:34; 20:31; Acts 8:37; Rom. 1:4).
    Elisabeth, Mary's older kinsman, has already conceived in her old age, and will give birth to a child that will be unique among men. With God, nothing is impossible.
    In a beautiful act of faith, one that should be emulated by every child of God, Mary abandoned herself fully unto the wise and benevolent direction of her faithful God: "Behold the handmaid of the

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Lord; be it unto me ACCORDING TO THY WORD!" How marvelously did God vindicate her faith. Nothing is EVER lost or diminished that is yielded up to God's direction. To the contrary, every life committed unto His direction is enhanced and beautified --- made triumphant and glorious.
    Are YOU permitting God to work His will THROUGH YOU??


    It is now only two weeks until time for the Thanksgiving Fellowship Meeting here at Landmark, in Rockford. From far and near come reports that brethren are converging on Rockford, and we look forward to a great time in the Lord.
    Though a great deal of "extra" effort is required on the part of our ladies, they have always come through in a marvelous way; I am confident this will be the case again. But, there are fewer of us this year. It may be necessary to crowd a little closer together in our homes during the nights. If you have SLEEPING BAGS (and room to bring them with you) we would deeply appreciate your doing so. We can always use them for making the little ones more comfortable --- that is, those who get assigned to sleep on the carpet.
    But, most of all, COME!! And we trust that this meeting will be a mutual blessing to all.
    Landmark Church is located five blocks East of U.S. 51 (South), in the 3000 block.

DICK FERRIS ... Continued

malignancy had spread beyond the kidney itself.
    In any event, the hearts of all the saints should be united in persistent, unceasing prayer for this brother's full recovery -- that his life and ministry may continue to count for the Father's glory.
    If the Lord moves your heart to share in providing for this brother's family while he is incapacitated, you may write to him:
        Richard L. Ferris
        5115 Jellison Ct.
        Arvada, Colo. 80003


    Of the various missionaries that have gone to Japan from our general fellowship, only Bro. Carlton Elkins remains on the mainland of Japan. When it was necessary for Bro. Ferris to return to the States the work at Kunitachi fell upon this brother who has continued to labor faithfully --- while facing much unjust criticism, general nit-picking and, in some cases, a cut off of support from some churches.
    We know that the Lord's grace is "sufficient". And, Brother Elkins is making no complaint. But we also know that hyper-critical theorists who sit at home and do nothing constructive, while attempting to destroy a servant of God who has abandoned his life to the service of Jesus, STILL HAVE TO FACE THE FAITHFUL LORD OF THAT SERVANT in the day of judgment. His judgment will be "just". Some self-appointed guardians of denominational orthodoxy are headed for an unpleasant surprise on that day!
    Let us faithfully remember this brother, and all the others who are zealously "holding forth the word of life", in regular prayer & with a liberality of pecuniary support!
Things that once were wild alarms
    Cannot now disturb my rest;
Closed in everlasting arms,
Pillowed on His loving breast.
Oh, to lie for ever here,
    Doubt and care and self resign,
While He whispers in my ear
I am His, and He is mine!
-- Author Unknown