Christ, our Light

Quotations for July, 2023

Saturday, July 1, 2023
Commemoration of John & Henry Venn, Priests, Evangelical Divines, 1813, 1873

Philosophy and science have not always been friendly towards the idea of God, the reason being that they are dedicated to the task of accounting for things and are impatient with anything that refuses to give an account of itself.
... A. W. Tozer (1897-1963), The Knowledge of the Holy, Harper & Row, 1975, p. 33 (see the book; see also Job 40:2; 38:2-3; Isa. 40:14; Eccl. 6:10-11; Rom. 9:19-21; 11:34-36; 1 Tim. 1:6-7; more at God, Philosophy, Reason, Science)

Sunday, July 2, 2023

God keep me from saying anything that would be unloving; God shut my mouth if I am not to speak in tender love. But what I am saying is a fact. How often there is found among Christians who are banded together in work, sharp criticism, sharp judgment, hasty opinion, unloving words, secret contempt of each other, secret condemnation of each other. Oh, just as a mother’s love covers her children and delights in them and has the tenderest compassion with their foibles or failures, so there ought to be in the heart of every believer a motherly love toward every brother and sister in Christ. Have you aimed at that? Have you sought it? Have you ever pleaded for it?
... Andrew Murray (1828-1917), Absolute Surrender, Bible Institute Colportage Association, 1897, p. 28 (see the book; see also 1 John 4:20; John 1:18; 13:34; Col. 3:12-13; 1 John 2:4; 3:17; 4:12; more at Christ, Condemnation, Contempt, Criticism, God, Judgment, Love)

Monday, July 3, 2023
Feast of Thomas the Apostle

It seems to be very hard, and if that would do any good, might be a just matter of complaint, that we are fallen into so profane and skeptical an age, which takes a pleasure and a pride in unraveling almost all the received principles both of religion and reason, so that we are put many times to prove those things, which can hardly be made plainer than they are of themselves.
... John Tillotson (1630-1694), Works of Dr. John Tillotson, v. I, London: J. F. Dove, for R. Priestley, 1820, Sermon I, p. 332 (see the book; see also Job 28:28; Ps. 19:1-6; Isa. 40:26; Jer. 10:10-13; John 1:9; Rom. 1:18-19; Col. 3:16; 1 Tim. 2:3-4; Jas. 3:13; 1 John 4:6; more at Apologetics, Complaint, Pride, Profane, Proof, Reason, Skeptic)

Tuesday, July 4, 2023

The problem of America as a nation, in biblical perspective, remains this elementary issue of repentance. The United States is, as all nations are, called in the Word of God to repentance. That, in truth, is what the church calls for, whether knowingly or not, every time the church prays Thy Kingdom come.
... William Stringfellow (1928-1985), The Politics of Spirituality, Westminster Press, 1984, p. 62 (see the book; see also Matt. 6:10; Dan. 2:44; 7:13,27; Col. 1:13-14; Rev. 11:15; 20:4; more at Church, God, Kingdom, Nation, Prayer, Repentance)

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

I throw myself down in my chamber, and I call in and invite God, and His Angels thither, and when they are there, I neglect God and His Angels for the noise of a fly, for the rattling of a coach, for the whining of a door.
... John Donne (1573-1631), Works of John Donne, vol. III, London: John W. Parker, 1839, Sermon LXXX, p. 477-478 (see the book; see also Luke 22:45-46; Matt. 14:23; 24:42; 26:36-41; Mark 1:35; 14:37-38; Luke 21:36; Rev. 3:2-3; more at Angel, God, Neglect, Prayer)

Thursday, July 6, 2023
Feast of John Huss, Reformer, Martyr, 1415
Feast of Thomas More, Scholar & Martyr, &
John Fisher, Bishop & Martyr, 1535

There is no discovery of the truth of Christ’s teaching, no unanswerable inward endorsement of it, without committing oneself to his way of life.
... J. B. Phillips (1906-1982), God Our Contemporary, New York: Macmillan, 1960, p. 116 (see the book; see also 1 John 2:3; Matt. 6:14-15; 7:24-27; 12:50; Luke 6:47-49; 11:28; John 13:17; 14:15; 15:10,14; Rom. 2:6-7; Gal. 6:7-8; Jas. 1:21-24; 1 John 3:24; 5:3-5; more at Christ, Commitment, Discovery, Life, Teach, Truth)

Friday, July 7, 2023

We are not only to sing the doxology, but to be the doxology.
... Francis A. Schaeffer (1912-1984), No Little People, Downer Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1974, reprint, Crossway, 2003, p. 236 (see the book; see also Rev. 5:11-14; John 3:36; Rom. 15:8-11; Eph. 5:19-20; Phil. 2:9-11; Col. 3:16-17; 1 Tim. 1:17; Jas. 5:13; more at Joy, Praise, Song)

Saturday, July 8, 2023

Ask for everything you can ask in Christ’s name, i.e. everything desirable by a man who is in Christ’s kingdom of God, by a man who lives for it at heart, everything in tune with the purpose and work of the kingdom in Christ. If you are in that kingdom, then pray freely for whatever you need or wish to keep you active and effective for it, from daily bread upwards and outwards.
... P. T. Forsyth (1848-1921), The Soul of Prayer [1916], Regent College Publishing, 2002, p. 76 (see the book; see also John 16:23-24; Matt. 6:6-8; 7:11; 9:37-38; 18:19-20; 21:21-22; Mark 11:22-25; Luke 11:13; John 14:12-14; 15:7; Col. 3:17; 1 Thess. 5:17; more at Bread, Christ, God, Heart, Kingdom, Need, Prayer, Purpose, Work)

Sunday, July 9, 2023

Prayer in the Spirit is socially revolutionary because it prepares the way for the advance of the gospel in society, and the gospel carries with it new social values that contain the seeds for a new society based on the righteousness of the kingdom.
... Donald G. Bloesch (1928-2010), The Struggle of Prayer, Harper & Row, 1980, p. 43 (see the book; see also Jude 1:20; Zech. 12:10; Rom. 8:15; Gal. 4:6; Eph. 2:22; 6:18; more at Gospel, Holy Spirit, Kingdom, Prayer, Righteousness, Social)

Monday, July 10, 2023

We must try to be at one and the same time for the Church and against the Church. They alone can serve her faithfully whose consciences are continually exercised as to whether they ought not, for Christ’s sake, to leave her.
... Alec R. Vidler (1899-1991), quoting an unknown German theological student in Essays in Liberality, SCM Press, 1957, p. 27 (see the book; see also Ps. 69:8-9; Judges 10:6; Matt. 21:12-13; Mark 11:15-17; John 2:13-17; 2 Cor. 10:4; 1 Tim. 6:3-5; 2 Pet. 2:1-3; Rev. 3:1-2; more at Christ, Church, Conscience, Purity, Service)

Tuesday, July 11, 2023
Feast of Benedict of Nursia, Father of Western Monasticism, c.550

The Christian is engaged in a warfare. There is a fight before him, hence armour is urgently needed. It is impossible for us to stand against the wiles of the Devil unless we avail ourselves of the provision which God has made for enabling us to stand.
... A. W. Pink (1886-1952), Practical Christianity, Sovereign Grace Publishers, Nov 1, 2001, p. 124 (see the book; see also 2 Cor. 10:3-4; Mark 16:17-18; Luke 10:19-20; 21:17-19; John 12:31; Rom. 8:38-39; 13:12; 2 Cor. 6:4-10; Eph. 6:10-18; Col. 2:15; 1 Thess. 5:8; more at Devil, Faith, Fight, God, Providence)

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

If we would be strong and vigorous, we must go to God daily and get grace. A man can no more take in a supply of grace for the future than he can eat enough today to last him for the next six months; or take sufficient air into his lungs at once to sustain life for a week to come. We are permitted to draw upon God’s store of grace from day to day, as we need it.
... Dwight Lyman Moody (1837-1899), Sovereign Grace, Chicago, Ill.: Bible Institute Colportage Association, 1891, reprint, Echo Library, 2010, p. 33 (see the book; see also Deut. 8:3; Ex. 16:21-23; Job 23:12; Pr. 30:8; Matt. 6:11; Luke 11:3; John 6:35; more at God, Grace, Need, Prayer, Strength, Today)

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Only when a man tries to live the divine life can the divine Christ manifest Himself to him. Therefore, the true way for you to find Christ is not to go groping in a thousand books. It is not for you to try evidences about a thousand things that people have believed of Him, but it is for you to undertake so great a life, so devoted a life, so pure a life, so serviceable a life, that you cannot do it except by Christ, and then see whether Christ helps you. See then whether there comes to you the certainty that you are a child of God, and the manifestation of the child of God becomes the most credible, the most certain thing to you in all of history.
... Phillips Brooks (1835-1893), Addresses, Philadelphia: Henry Altemus, 1895, p. 53 (see the book; see also Rom. 4:17; Job 19:25-27; John 11:25-26; Rom. 8:10-11; Col. 1:27; Heb. 11:13-16; more at Authenticity, Belief, Book, Certainty, Christ, Devotion, God, Life, Purity, Revelation)

Friday, July 14, 2023
Feast of John Keble, Priest, Poet, Tractarian, 1866

Would’st thou the life of souls discern?
Nor human wisdom nor divine
Helps thee by aught beside to learn:
Love is life’s only sign.
The spring of the regenerate heart,
The pulse, the glow of every part,
Is the true love of Christ our Lord,
As man embrac’d, as God ador’d.
... John Keble (1792-1866), The Christian Year [1827], G. W. Doane, ed., Philadelphia: Lea & Blanchard, 1842, p. 159 (see the book; see also 1 Thess. 4:9-10; Lev. 19:18; John 13:34-35; 15:17; Rom. 12:10; 1 Cor. 13:4-7; Gal. 5:14; Eph. 5:1-2; Phil. 2:1-2; Heb. 13:1; Jas. 2:8; 1 Pet. 1:22; 1 John 2:5; 4:7; more at Christ, God, Heart, Life, Love, Regeneration, Soul, Wisdom)

Saturday, July 15, 2023
Commemoration of Swithun, Bishop of Winchester, c.862
Commemoration of Bonaventure, Franciscan Friar, Bishop, Peacemaker, 1274

The scandal of the Bible does not lie so much in its claim to record the Word of God, as in its insistence that the Word of God is to be heard in a particular historical happening, in a particular locality—and only there. To put it in a provocative manner: the Bible is theology. It is historical theology. It can reveal its meaning only to those who regard it as the Word of God, and are able to preserve a strict confidence in the universal significance of particular historical occasions.
... Sir Edwyn C. Hoskyns (1884-1937), We are the Pharisees, London: SPCK, 1960, p. 58 (see the book; see also Matt. 17:5; Gen. 15:9-21; 16:13-14; 17:7-8; Ex. 3:7-8; Num. 13:17-20; Ps. 25:12-13; 37:9-11; Matt. 2:1-2; Luke 2:10-11; 3:1-2; Acts 17:1,14-15; 18:1; 20:1; 25:1-2; 27:1-3; 28:14-16; more at Bible, God, Historical, Meaning, Theology)

Sunday, July 16, 2023
Commemoration of Osmund, Bishop of Salisbury, 1099

Jesus Christ is a God whom we approach without pride, and before whom we humble ourselves without despair.
... Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), Pensées (Thoughts) [1660], P.F. Collier & Son, 1910, #528, p. 173 (see the book; see also Heb. 10:19-22; Ps. 118:22,23; Isa. 65:6-7; Matt. 7:7-11; 9:20-22; Luke 7:37-48; Rom. 8:15-17; 2 Cor. 12:7-9; Eph. 3:12; Heb. 4:16; 1 Pet. 2:10; more at Christ, Despair, Humility, Jesus, Pride)

Monday, July 17, 2023

Jesus! where’er thy people meet,
There they behold thy mercy-seat;
Where’er they seek thee, thou art found,
And every place is hallow’d ground.
Dear Shepherd of thy chosen few!
Thy former mercies here renew;
Here to our waiting hearts proclaim
The sweetness of thy saving name.
... William Cowper (1731-1800), The Works of William Cowper: his life, letters, and poems, New York: R. Carter & Brothers, 1851, p. 676 (see the book; see also John 10:11-15; Ex. 3:5; 25:17-18; Ps. 85:6; Matt. 18:20; Rom. 9:15-16; 2 Thess. 2:13-14; Heb. 10:25; Jas. 1:18; 1 Pet. 2:9-10; more at Holiness, Jesus, Mercy, People, Preach, Renewal, Salvation)

Tuesday, July 18, 2023

Prayer is something deeper than words. It is present in the soul before it has been formulated into words. And it abides in the soul after the last words of prayer have passed over our lips.
Prayer is an attitude of our hearts, an attitude of mind. Prayer is a definite attitude of our hearts toward God, an attitude which He in heaven immediately recognizes as prayer, as an appeal to His heart. Whether it takes the form of words or not, does not mean anything to God, only to ourselves.
... O. Hallesby (1879-1961), Prayer, London: Inter-Varsity Fellowship, 1943, reprint, Augsburg Fortress Books, 1975, 1994, p. 16 (see the book; see also Ps. 77:1-3; 5:1; 10:17-18; 42:1-2; 69:3; 88:1-2; Isa. 26:16; Matt. 6:8; Luke 22:44; Rom. 8:15,26-27; Gal. 4:6; Eph. 6:18; Phil. 4:6; Col. 4:2; Heb. 5:7; Jude 1:20; more at Attitudes, God, Heart, Mind, Prayer, Soul)

Wednesday, July 19, 2023
Feast of Gregory, Bishop of Nyssa, & his sister Macrina, Teachers, c.394 & c.379

We readily acknowledge, that God alone is to be the rule and measure of our prayers, that in them we are to look wholly unto Him, and act wholly for Him, that we are only to pray in such a manner, for such things, and such ends, as are suitable to His glory.
... William Law (1686-1761), A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life [1728], London: Methuen, 1899, p. 2 (see the book; see also Matt. 26:39; Ps. 40:8; Matt. 6:10; 26:42; Mark 3:35; John 4:34; Rom. 12:2; Col. 1:13-14; 1 Thess. 5:17-18; Heb. 10:36; 1 Pet. 2:15; 4:1-2; more at Action, Glory, God, Prayer, Rule)

Thursday, July 20, 2023
Commemoration of Bartolomè de las Casas, Apostle to the Indies, 1566

The cross is there, right from the beginning, he has only got to pick it up; there is no need for him to go out and look for a cross for himself, no need for him deliberately to run after suffering. Jesus says that every Christian has his own cross waiting for him, a cross destined and appointed by God. Each must endure his allotted share of suffering and rejection.
... Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906-1945), The Cost of Discipleship, Simon and Schuster, 1959, p. 89 (see the book; see also Luke 14:27; Matt. 5:10-12; 10:37-39; 16:24-26; Mark 8:34-37; Luke 9:23-25; John 15:19-21; 16:33; 1 Thess. 3:4; 2 Tim. 3:12-13; 1 Pet. 2:20-21; Rev. 7:13-14; more at Cross, God, Jesus, Suffer)

Friday, July 21, 2023

Prayer is not a means of laying hold of God; that prayer precisely is not made possible by a system, but, rather, by a free decision of grace on the part of the one who wills indeed to listen; that prayer precisely is not addressed to one who dwells at a distance, but is addressed to one who comes very close (even into our hearts!); that prayer precisely is a miracle and not a technical procedure.
... Jacques Ellul (1912-1994), Prayer and Modern Man, New York: The Seabury Press, 1973, p. 9 (see the book; see also 1 Thess. 5:17-19; Eccl. 5:2; Matt. 6:9-13; Luke 18:13; Heb. 10:22-23; more at God, Grace, Listening, Miracle, Prayer, Presence of God)

Saturday, July 22, 2023
Feast of Mary Magdalen, Apostle to the Apostles

What deadens us most to God’s presence within us, I think, is the inner dialogue that we are continuously engaged in with ourselves, the endless chatter of human thought. I suspect that there is nothing more crucial to true spiritual comfort... than being able from time to time to stop that chatter including the chatter of spoken prayer. If we choose to seek the silence of the holy place, or to open ourselves to its seeking, I think there is no surer way than by keeping silent.
... Frederick Buechner (1926-2022), Telling Secrets, HarperSanFrancisco, 1991, p. 105 (see the book; see also Zeph. 1:7; Deut. 27:9-10; Ps. 4:4; 46:10; Hab. 2:20; Zech. 2:13; Luke 4:33-35; Rom. 9:20; more at Comfort, God, Holiness, Prayer, Silence, Thought)

Sunday, July 23, 2023
Commemoration of Bridget of Sweden, Abbess of Vadstena, 1373

Not only is knowledge of self tied to knowledge of God, but we know ourselves truthfully only when we know ourselves in relation to God. We know who we are only when we can place our selves—locate our stories—within God’s story.
... Stanley Hauerwas (b. 1940), The Peaceable Kingdom, University of Notre Dame Press, 1983, p. 27 (see the book; see also 1 John 1:5-7; Pr. 1:7; Hos. 6:6; Matt. 18:10; 22:39; Rom. 8:18; 1 Cor. 8:3; 13:9-12; Phil. 3:8; 1 John 3:19-20; more at God, Knowing God, Knowledge, Self)

Monday, July 24, 2023
Commemoration of Thomas à Kempis, priest, spiritual writer, 1471

Why do we talk and gossip so continually, seeing that we so rarely resume our silence without some hurt done to our conscience? ... Devout conversation on spiritual things helpeth not a little to spiritual progress, most of all where those of kindred mind and spirit find their ground of fellowship in God.
... Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471), Of the Imitation of Christ [1418], Leipzig: Bernhard Tauchnitz, 1877, I.x.1, p. 42-43 (see the book; see also 1 John 1:3; Lev. 19:16; Pr. 20:19; Jer. 31:34; Rom. 12:9; Eph. 4:31; Col. 1:27; Tit. 3:1-2; 1 Tim. 3:16; Heb. 3:13; 1 John 3:24; more at Church, Conscience, Fellowship, God, Gossip, Progress, Silence, Spirit)

Tuesday, July 25, 2023
Feast of James the Apostle

There is a difficulty about disagreeing with God. He is the source from which all your reasoning power comes: you could not be right and He wrong any more than a stream can rise higher than its own source. When you are arguing against Him, you are arguing against the very power that makes you able to argue at all: it is like cutting off the branch you are sitting on.
... C. S. Lewis (1898-1963), Mere Christianity, New York: MacMillan, 1952, reprint, HarperCollins, 2001, p. 48 (see the book; see also Isa. 45:9; Gen. 32:27-28; Deut. 9:6; 31:27; Neh. 9:30; Job 9:2; 40:2; Zech. 7:11-12; Matt. 23:31-33; Acts 7:51; Eph. 4:30; Phil. 2:14-16; more at Argument, God, Power, Reason)

Wednesday, July 26, 2023

A true faith in Jesus Christ will not suffer us to be idle. No, it is an active, lively, restless principle; it fills the heart, so that it cannot be easy till it is doing something for Jesus Christ.
... George Whitefield (1714-1770), from a letter, 1739, The Works of the Reverend George Whitefield, M.A., v. I, London: Edward and Charles Dilly, 1771, p. 47 (see the book; see also Gal. 6:9; Eccl. 4:5; Isa. 6:8; Matt. 9:37-38; Rom. 12:11; 1 Thess. 4:10; 2 Thess. 3:10-13; Heb. 6:10-12; 2 Pet. 1:5-8; more at Faith, Heart, Jesus, Restless, Truth)

Thursday, July 27, 2023
Commemoration of Brooke Foss Westcott, Bishop of Durham, Teacher, 1901
Commemoration of John R. W. Stott, spiritual writer and teacher, 2011

If only we could agree that Scripture is ‘God’s Word written’, that it is supreme in its authority over all human traditions however venerable, and that it must be allowed to reform and renew the church, we would take an immediate leap forward in ecumenical relationships. Reformation according to the Word of God is indispensable to reunion.
... John R. W. Stott (1921-2011), The Contemporary Christian, Inter-Varsity, 1992, p. 182 (see the book; see also Eph. 2:19-20; Ps. 118:22; Isa. 28:16; Luke 20:17-18; John 3:34; Acts 4:11-12; Rom. 3:1-2; 1 Pet. 2:6-8; more at Church, God, Reform, Renewal, Scripture, Tradition)

Friday, July 28, 2023
Commemoration of Johann Sebastian Bach, musician, 1750

What a wonderful thing it is to be sure of one’s faith! How wonderful to be a member of the evangelical church, which preaches the free grace of God through Christ as the hope of sinners! If we were to rely on our works—my God, what would become of us?
... George Frideric Handel (1685-1759), What Luther Says: an anthology, v. II, Martin Luther & Ewald Martin Plass, ed., Concordia Pub. House, 1959, p. 612 fn (see the book; see also Gal. 2:15-16; Matt. 5:20; Acts 13:38-39; Rom. 3:22-24; 4:13; 2 Cor. 1:19-20; Eph. 2:8-9; Tit. 3:4-7; 1 Thess. 1:4-5; 1 John 3:14; more at Christ, Church, Faith, God, Grace, Hope, Preach, Sinner, Work)

Saturday, July 29, 2023
Feast of Mary, Martha & Lazarus, Companions of Our Lord

Every mother knows that she could secure perfect and easy obedience in her child, if she could only get into that child’s will and work it for him, making him want himself to do the things she willed he should. And this is what our Father does for His children in the new dispensation,—He writes His laws on our hearts and on our minds, and we love them, and are drawn to our obedience by our affections and judgment, not driven by our fears.
... Hannah Whitall Smith (1832-1911), Christian’s Secret of a Happy Life, London: F. E. Longley, 1876, p. 130 (see the book; see also Eze. 36:25-27; Jer. 31:33-34; Eze. 11:19; John 14:16-17,26; Rom. 8:6-7; 2 Cor. 3:3; Gal. 5:22-23; Heb. 8:10-13; 10:16-18; more at Child, Father, Fear, Judgment, Knowledge, Love, Mother, Obedience)

Sunday, July 30, 2023
Commemoration of William Wilberforce, Social Reformer, 1833

Christianity proposes not to extinguish our natural desires. It promises to bring the desires under just control and direct them to their true object.
... William Wilberforce (1759-1833), Real Christianity, ed. James Houston, Colorado Springs, CO: David C. Cook, 2005, p. 107-108 (see the book; see also Tit. 1:7-8; Matt. 6:19-21; Acts 24:25; 1 Cor. 9:25; Gal. 5:22-23; Heb. 10:34; 2 Pet. 1:5-9; more at Promise, Self-control, Truth)

Monday, July 31, 2023
Commemoration of Ignatius of Loyola, Founder of the Society of Jesus, 1556

Grace means more, far more than we can put into words, because it means nothing less than the infinite character of God Himself. It includes mercy for the undeserving and unmerciful, help for the helpless and hopeless, redemption for the renegade and repulsive, love for the unloving and unlovely, kindness for the unkind and unthankful. And all this in full measure and overflowing abundance, because of nothing in the object, and because of everything in the Giver, God Himself.
... W. H. Griffith Thomas (1861-1924), Grace and Power: some aspects of the spiritual life, New York: Fleming H. Revell, 1916, p. 89 (see the book; see also Ps. 145:9; Matt. 5:44-45; Acts 14:16-17; Rom. 5:3-5; 1 John 4:19; more at God, Grace, Helplessness, Hopelessness, Kindness, Love, Redemption)


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