Spiritual Warfare: Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places

Spiritual Warfare : John McTernan 

Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places

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The Bible is very clear that there are spiritual forces behind many of the issues that Christians deal with. The Bible clearly tells us how to confront these spiritual forces. The Lord Jesus showed His disciples how to deal with entrenched forces that are extremely difficult to defeat. This is found in both Matthew and Mark. The Bible gives great detail to this encounter to which I think we should really pay close attention. Both of these gospels give account of the story of a father who brought his young son to the Lord Jesus to be healed. The disciples were unable to heal the child. The young boy had mental problems; however, behind these problems were an unclean spirit. The oppression of this devil manifested itself in mental problems in the young child. The Lord Jesus made it clear that it took faith to free the boy of this oppression. The boy’s father then made a statement that I have used many times in my own life: Mark 9:24 And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.

There were many times in my life that I believed yet unbelief was screaming at me, and I echoed Mark 24 just like the boy’s father.

The Lord Jesus privately taught His disciples that the problem was it took faith to defeat the devil and free the boy, and they were full of unbelief. In both gospel accounts, the Lord Jesus made it very clear the problem was faith, but he then added that the faith also involved prayer and fasting. To obtain victory of this entrenched devil, it took faith along with prayer and fasting. In difficult spiritual battles the Lord was telling us that both prayer and fasting was needed.

The verses to show this follow:

Matthew 17:21 Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.Mark 9:29 And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.

I posted both gospel accounts of this incident so you can see how important prayer and fasting are in spiritual warfare.

Matthew (KJV)

 

Mathew 17:14,15 And when they were come to the multitude, there came to him a certain man, kneeling down to him, and saying, Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is a lunatic, and sore vexed: for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water. (16) And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him. (:17) Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me. (18) And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour. (19) Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out? (20) And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. (21) Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.

 

Mark (KJV) 

 

Mark 9:17,18 And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit; And wheresoever he taketh him, he teareth him: and he foameth, and gnasheth with his teeth, and pineth away: and I spake to thy disciples that they should cast him out; and they could not. Mark 9:19 He answereth him, and saith, O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him unto me. Mark 9:20 And they brought him unto him: and when he saw him, straightway the spirit tare him; and he fell on the ground, and wallowed foaming. Mark 9:21 And he asked his father, How long is it ago since this came unto him? And he said, Of a child. Mark 9:22 And ofttimes it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters, to destroy him: but if thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us. Mark 9:23 Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth. Mark 9:24 And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief. Mark 9:25 When Jesus saw that the people came running together, he rebuked the foul spirit, saying unto him, Thou dumb and deaf spirit, I charge thee, come out of him, and enter no more into him. Mark 9:26 And the spirit cried, and rent him sore, and came out of him: and he was as one dead; insomuch that many said, He is dead. Mark 9:27 But Jesus took him by the hand, and lifted him up; and he arose. Mark 9:28 And when he was come into the house, his disciples asked him privately, Why could not we cast him out? Mark 9:29 And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.

 

The NIV and almost all modern translations omit Matthew 17:21 and omit fasting from Mark 9:29! If the translation contains Matthew 17:21 there is a footnote stating the oldest manuscripts do not contain this verse. How can a person have faith about a verse, if it is in a bracket with a footnote questioning its authority as part of the Bible? The Lord Jesus made it clear that in difficult spiritual warfare with entrenched demonic forces that both prayer and fasting were needed to defeat them.

These modern translations omitting fasting insulate demonic forces that cannot be defeated. This is like a coup for the devil, as he used spiritual corrupt “scholars” and publishers to promote modern translations which insulate him from defeat. I have dealt with many Christians that are under the care of a doctor and taking drugs for depression, anxiety and other mental problems. There is a lack of power in their life and in the church they are attending. There could be several reasons for this, but one reason I believe is that prayer and fasting to deal with these issues have been removed from the modern translations. These people are trapped and what they need for the victory has been stripped from the translations they read, while the answer is found in the KJV.

I also posted about the modern translations removing that: “the Lord Jesus came to heal the brokenhearted” as found in Luke 4:18. When you add this to the removal of prayer and fasting, a clear picture is coming into focus how satan is using the modern translation to keep Christians defeated and insulate himself from defeat. There are spiritual reasons why the words and verses were removed from the modern translations.The spiritual power is found in the King James Bible, as it was not corrupted and contains the complete word of God.

I have posted the NIV to show how Mark 9:29 and Mattherw 17:21 have been altered in the modern translations:

Matthew (NIV) Matthew 17:14,15 When they came to the crowd, a man approached Jesus and knelt before him. “Lord, have mercy on my son,” he said. “He has seizures and is suffering greatly. He often falls into the fire or into the water. (16) I brought him to your disciples, but they could not heal him.” (17) “You unbelieving and perverse generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me.” (18) Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed at that moment. (19) Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” (20) He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” (21) (22) When they came together in Galilee, he said to them, “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men.

Mark (NIV) Mark 9:25 When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the impure spirit. “You deaf and mute spirit,” he said, “I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.” (26) The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out. The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said, “He’s dead.” (27) But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up. (28) After Jesus had gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” (29) He replied, “This kind can come out only by prayer.”  

For what is your life? James 4:14 KJV

 

James 4:14 (KJV)

14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is

your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time,

and then vanisheth away.
The Epistle of James is a book written to believers. It is filled
with information to help the child God as he makes his earthly
sojourn. In our verse for today, James ask the question, “what

is your life?” This question is then followed by three phrases I

trust will bless you.
 
   For the believer it is A Life of Transformed
Character— “It is even a vapour…” Vapor is simply water that

has been transformed from a liquid to a gas. It has been changed
in character.

   This change is a Divine transformation— it is affected by an
higher power. That water which once lay stagnant in the swamp is

now rising heavenward, because of the power of the sun upon
it. We who once sank hopelessly in the mire of destruction are
now soaring upward, because we have been transformed by the
power of the SON (Jesus).

    This change is a Distinct transformation—it lifts us to a
higher plane. That which once ran to the lowest point is now
rising. We who once were running after the base elements of this
world have now “Set our affections on things above…” (Col.3:2a).

     This change is a Delightful transformation—it calls us to

a higher purpose. The water from that swamp could bring sickness
and death. Now that same water, changed by the sun, can provide

life. Likewise, we who once could offer no help for a thirsting

soul can now give to theirs the water of life. Do you possess such

a life?

Freedom is not Free – “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” Proverbs 14:34

Freedom is not Free – “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” Proverbs 14:34

October 11, 2013 at 6:19am

“Freedom is not Free “  by Adrian Rogers

 “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” Proverbs 14:34

God Himself placed the American dream into the bosom of our Founding Fathers — that is my firm conviction. Our government, rooted in a belief in Almighty God, was formed by brave men who knew it was God Himself Who made man and gave him rights…“endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights,” they said. In fact, our Constitution was born in the heat of a revival. They knew that government doesn’t “give” anybody rights; it has no rights to give. God gives the rights. Government’s role is to protect those God-given rights.

The only reason our nation is great is because of the blessing of God. God exalted our nation from its beginning.

The Exaltation of a Nation“ Righteousness exalts a nation.” When people obey the Lord, God is free to bless. Many have forgotten that this nation is great because it was born in the very fires of a revival.

From 1740 to 1770, the flames of revival swept across this land. Jonathan Edwards, George Whitfield, and other great revivalists preached, and God gave America a mighty spiritual awakening. In fact, it was called “The Great Awakening.”

Even secular historians were forced to admit that there was a great awakening.Out of this awakening people gained character, and out of this character the Constitution came.

The Constitution was written by people who had character, for people who had character. They believed people must have character, for our Founding Fathers did not believe in big government; they believed that individuals must accept personal responsibility. Character is responsibility assumed. It’s just plain hard work. If the people of the United States of America do not have character, the Constitution will not work. Ultimately, our nation will fail without character. The price of liberty is eternal vigilance, Jefferson said.

Curious about what made our nation so great and determined to discover what it was, the brilliant French philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville set out in 1831 to tour America. He found that it was not our natural resources, ingenuity, nor wealth. He wrote, “Not until I went into the churches of America and heard the pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.” (Democracy in America, 1835) His words echo what Solomon said so long ago, “Righteousness exalts a nation.”

The Humiliation of a NationIf righteousness exalts, surely the converse is also true. “Sin is a reproach to any people.” When there is a lack of righteousness, it will destroy a nation; it will lead to the ruin of any people.

I want to tell you that the greatest threat to America is God. He’s our only hope, but He is also our biggest threat. I’m not afraid nearly so much of what the Taliban or the terrorists are going to do to us as I am of what God Himself is going to do, through them or through someone else.

Character: Don’t Leave Home Without It Character is the missing ingredient in our nation today — that “responsibility assumed.” We’ve lost our character as a nation. Look what we are doing to ourselves:

- Government dependence — Rather than depending upon God, self-ingenuity and responsibility, we have come to think Uncle Sam is our source. Our Constitution states that government is to provide for the common defense and promote the general welfare, not promote the common defense and provide the general welfare!

 - Divorce — Family values have been scorned. Since 1920, the divorce rate has risen 1,420 percent. Baby boomers are divorcing at a rate twice as high as their parents.

- Abortion — The Vietnam Memorial has 68,000 names on it. It stretches for five hundred feet. If we were to build a similar memorial for the little babies who’ve died since Roe vs. Wade, it would have over 45 million names on it and would stretch over 63 miles.

- Pornography — A broken sewer pipe is being spewed out on America. Material that was once seen and sold in back alleys is now on open display in magazine racks and neighborhood drug stores and piped into the homes of America’s families through cable television and the Internet.

- Drugs and alcohol — We live in an alcohol‑soaked society. Advertisers have done such a good job that according to one statistic, 95% of college students drink beer. That’s not to mention the rampant drug use in our society and the problems it brings.

“Sin is a reproach to any people,” and when we lose our character, we lose our freedom. Liberty and responsibility are inseparably linked. We are humiliated as a nation, yet we sing “God Bless America.” It’s a wonder He doesn’t blot us off the face of the earth.

The Rejuvenation of a Nation Even so, I refuse to say it is too late for America. There can be a new birth of freedom. If you study the history of revival, you find that God sends revival in dark days. What God has done before, He can do again. As God forgives sins for an individual, so He forgives sins for a nation. Pray for, look for, and expect revival!

Our nation was born in a revival. There can be a revival, and the answer is not in Washington. When we get right with God, God is going to hear us. 2 Chronicles 7:24 says, “If my people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

We do not need a majority. Great numbers aren’t what we need. Lenin began his revolution in 1917 with a few thousand. Castro took over Cuba with a band of eighty cutthroats. Jesus began with twelve disciples. Joshua 23:10 says, “One man of you shall chase a thousand: for the LORD your God, He it is that fighteth for you, as He hath promised you.” One praying Christian is worth more than a thousand of those who do not believe in God.

We need to get in our prayer closets! Enter your prayer closet! Get on your face before God. Cry out for mercy. Say it, sing it, and mean it: “God bless America.” Believe God for revival. We need to say, “Lord, start a revival and let it begin with me.”

But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth?- Malachi 3:2

 But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner’s fire, and like fullers’ soap: – Malachi 3:2

    His first coming was without external pomp or show of power, and yet in truth there were few who could abide its testing might. Herod and all Jerusalem with him were stirred at the news of the wondrous birth. Those who supposed themselves to be waiting for him, showed the fallacy of their professions by rejecting him when he came.

His life on earth was a winnowing fan, which tried the great heap of religious profession, and few enough could abide the process. But what will his second advent be? What sinner can endure to think of it? “He shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.” When in his humiliation he did but say to the soldiers, “I am he,” they fell backward; what will be the terror of his enemies when he shall more fully reveal himself as the “I am?”

His death shook earth and darkened heaven, what shall be the dreadful splendour of that day in which as the living Saviour, he shall summon the quick and dead before him? O that the terrors of the Lord would persuade men to forsake their sins and kiss the Son lest he be angry!

Though a lamb, he is yet the lion of the tribe of Judah, rending the prey in pieces; and though he breaks not the bruised reed, yet will he break his enemies with a rod of iron, and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel. None of his foes shall bear up before the tempest of his wrath, or hide themselves from the sweeping hail of his indignation; but his beloved blood washed people look for his appearing with joy, and hope to abide it without fear: to them he sits as a refiner even now, and when he has tried them they shall come forth as gold.

Let us search ourselves this morning and make our calling and election sure, so that the coming of the Lord may cause no dark forebodings in our mind. O for grace to cast away all hypocrisy, and to be found of him sincere and without rebuke in the day of his appearing.

C.H. Spurgeon

“the Lord God will give grace and glory.” – Psalm 84:11

Psalm 84:11

King James Version (KJV) 11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.

October 1, 2013 at 6:32am

 

Bounteous is Jehovah in his nature; to give is his delight. His gifts are beyond measure precious, and are as freely given as the light of the sun. He gives grace to his elect because he wills it, to his redeemed because of his covenant, to the called because of his promise, to believers because they seek it, to sinners because they need it. He gives grace abundantly, seasonably, constantly, readily, sovereignly; doubly enhancing the value of the boon by the manner of its bestowal. Grace in all its forms he freely renders to his people: comforting, preserving, sanctifying, directing, instructing, assisting grace, he generously pours into their souls without ceasing, and he always will do so, whatever may occur. Sickness may befall, but the Lord will give grace; poverty may happen to us, but grace will surely be afforded; death must come but grace will light a candle at the darkest hour. Reader, how blessed it is as years roll round, and the leaves begin again to fall, to enjoy such an unfading promise as this, “The Lord will give grace.”

The little conjunction “and” in this verse is a diamond rivet binding the present with the future: grace and glory always go together. God has married them, and none can divorce them. The Lord will never deny a soul glory to whom he has freely given to live upon his grace; indeed, glory is nothing more than grace in its Sabbath dress, grace in full bloom, grace like autumn fruit, mellow and perfected. How soon we may have glory none can tell! It may be before this month of October has run out we shall see the Holy City; but be the interval longer or shorter, we shall be glorified ere long. Glory, the glory of heaven, the glory of eternity, the glory of Jesus, the glory of the Father, the Lord will surely give to his chosen. Oh, rare promise of a faithful God!

Two golden links of one celestial chain:

Who owneth grace shall surely glory gain.

C. H. Spurgeon

“I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin.”Psalm 32:5

September 15, 2013 at 8:17am

“I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin.”Psalm 32:5

David’s grief for sin was bitter. Its effects were visible upon his outward frame: “his bones waxed old”; “his moisture was turned into the drought of summer.” No remedy could he find, until he made a full confession before the throne of the heavenly grace. He tells us that for a time he kept silence, and his heart became more and more filled with grief: like a mountain tarn whose outlet is blocked up, his soul was swollen with torrents of sorrow.

He fashioned excuses; he endeavoured to divert his thoughts, but it was all to no purpose; like a festering sore his anguish gathered, and as he would not use the lancet of confession, his spirit was full of torment, and knew no rest. At last it came to this, that he must return unto his God in humble penitence, or die outright; so he hastened to the mercy-seat, and there unrolled the volume of his iniquities before the all-seeing One, acknowledging all the evil of his ways in language such as you read in the fifty-first and other penitential Psalms.

Having done this, a work so simple and yet so difficult to pride, he received at once the token of divine forgiveness; the bones which had been broken were made to rejoice, and he came forth from his closet to sing the blessedness of the man whose transgression is forgiven. See the value of a grace-wrought confession of sin! It is to be prized above all price, for in every case where there is a genuine, gracious confession, mercy is freely given, not because the repentance and confession deserve mercy, but for Christ’s sake.

Blessed be God, there is always healing for the broken heart; the fountain is ever flowing to cleanse us from our sins. Truly, O Lord, thou art a God “ready to pardon!” Therefore will we acknowledge our iniquities.

C.H. Spurgeon

“This man (JESUS) receiveth sinners.” – Luke 15:2

“This man receiveth sinners.” – Luke 15:2

September 16, 2013 at 5:57am

      Observe the condescension of this fact.

This Man, who towers above all other men, holy, harmless, undefiled, and separate from sinners

this Man receiveth sinners

      .

This Man, who is no other than the eternal God, before whom angels veil their faces–this Man receiveth sinners

      . It needs an angel’s tongue to describe such a mighty stoop of love. That any of us should be willing to seek after the lost is nothing wonderful–they are of our own race; but that he,

the offended God, against whom the transgression has been committed, should take upon himself the form of a servant, and bear the sin of many, and should then be willing to receive the vilest of the vile

    , this is marvellous.

“This Man receiveth sinners”; not, however, that they may remain sinners, but he receives them that he may pardon their sins, justify their persons, cleanse their hearts by his purifying word, preserve their souls by the indwelling of the Holy Ghost, and enable them to serve him, to show forth his praise, and to have communion with him. Into his heart’s love he receives sinners, takes them from the dunghill, and wears them as jewels in his crown; plucks them as brands from the burning, and preserves them as costly monuments of his mercy. None are so precious in Jesus’ sight as the sinners for whom he died.

When Jesus receives sinners, he has not some out-of-doors reception place, no casual ward where he charitably entertains them as men do passing beggars, but he opens the golden gates of his royal heart, and receives the sinner right into himself–yea, he admits the humble penitent into personal union and makes him a member of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. There was never such a reception as this! This fact is still most sure this day, he is still receiving sinners: would to God sinners would receive him.

C.H. Spurgeon

“I will; be thou clean.” – Mark 1:41

Mark 1:41 (KJV)41 And Jesus, moved with compassion, put forth his hand, and touched him, and saith unto him, I will; be thou clean.

Primeval darkness heard the Almighty fiat, “light be,” and straightway light was, and the word of the Lord Jesus is equal in majesty to that ancient word of power. Redemption like Creation has its word of might. Jesus speaks and it is done. Leprosy yielded to no human remedies, but it fled at once at the Lord’s “I will.”

The disease exhibited no hopeful signs or tokens of recovery, nature contributed nothing to its own healing, but the unaided word effected the entire work on the spot and forever. The sinner is in a plight more miserable than the leper; let him imitate his example and go to Jesus, “beseeching him and kneeling down to him.” Let him exercise what little faith he has, even though it should go no further than “Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean;” and there need be no doubt as to the result of the application.

Jesus heals all who come, and casts out none. In reading the narrative in which our morning’s text occurs, it is worthy of devout notice that Jesus touched the leper. This unclean person had broken through the regulations of the ceremonial law and pressed into the house, but Jesus so far from chiding him broke through the law himself in order to meet him. He made an interchange with the leper, for while he cleansed him, he contracted by that touch a Levitical defilement. Even so Jesus Christ was made sin for us, although in himself he knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

O that poor sinners would go to Jesus, believing in the power of his blessed substitutionary work, and they would soon learn the power of his gracious touch. That hand which multiplied the loaves, which saved sinking Peter, which upholds afflicted saints, which crowns believers, that same hand will touch every seeking sinner, and in a moment make him clean. The love of Jesus is the source of salvation. He loves, he looks, he touches us, we live.

When you fall into sin – Don’t Stay Down

Psalm 37:23-24 “The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand.”  

Good men and women of the Lord make mistakes and fall down into sin sometimes.  They get muddy and sometimes injured by the sin that has a snare laid for them by the world, the flesh, and the devil, (our enemies). When they fall however, it is not the end for them, because they love the Lord they fight and soon you see them standing up and walking with the Lord once more.  The Lord is always there to help us up when we have fallen down.  He is our ready friend to help us get up and not stay down.  If we fall into sin our desire should be to get back up and not just lay there in it’s wallowing mud.  The one’s that stay down are considered cast down and soon they become just like those that have never trusted in the Lord as their Savior.  Sin has dominion over them and they are powerless to rise up on their feet and walk again with the Lord.  They either decide that they enjoy the mud or they become too proud to call out to the Lord for His help but whatever the case such a one has made a choice to continue in there fallen state.  It has been my experience that when I fall down I struggle to get back up and sometimes I fall right back down again but it is of a truth that being His child you reach out for His hand and He lifts you back to your feet.  Praise God for His strength and love that surpasses and overcomes all my sin. To order us to place our feet on a firm and solid foundation and hold us up with His hand is of a great comfort. Those that belong to the Lord should not want to sin over and over again but when they do they have a way of escape from that sinful place of defeat.  The Lord takes great delight over His children, that though they may fall, they continue to trust and soon the Lord puts their feet in the right places once more.  If you have come to a place of falling into sin, call out to the One that can lift you up to solid ground, then start walking.  Have a blessed day.

We all need oil for our light – “Oil for the light.” Exodus 25:6

“Oil for the light.” Exodus 25:6

My soul, how much thou needest this, for thy lamp will not long continue to burn without it. Thy snuff will smoke and become an offence if light be gone, and gone it will be if oil be absent. Thou hast no oil well springing up in thy human nature, and therefore thou must go to them that sell and buy for thyself, or like the foolish virgins, thou wilt have to cry, “My lamp is gone out.”

Even the consecrated lamps could not give light without oil; though they shone in the tabernacle they needed to be fed, though no rough winds blew upon them they required to be trimmed, and thy need is equally as great. Under the most happy circumstances thou canst not give light for another hour unless fresh oil of grace be given thee.

It was not every oil that might be used in the Lord’s service; neither the petroleum which exudes so plentifully from the earth, nor the produce of fishes, nor that extracted from nuts would be accepted; one oil only was selected, and that the best olive oil. Pretended grace from natural goodness, fancied grace from priestly hands, or imaginary grace from outward ceremonies will never serve the true saint of God; he knows that the Lord would not be pleased with rivers of such oil.

He goes to the olive-press of Gethsemane, and draws his supplies from him who was crushed therein. The oil of gospel grace is pure and free from lees and dregs, and hence the light which is fed thereon is clear and bright. Our churches are the Saviour’s golden candelabra, and if they are to be lights in this dark world, they must have much holy oil. Let us pray for ourselves, our ministers, and our churches, that they may never lack oil for the light. Truth, holiness, joy, knowledge, love, these are all beams of the sacred light, but we cannot give them forth unless in private we receive oil from God the Holy Ghost.