Volume. XXVIII, No. 6
Sunday, 11 August 2013


Glorying In The Cross - Part 2


Continued from last week…..

Paul’s feelings towards the Cross—"God forbid that I should glory..." (B)

3. He gloried in the cross. He confessed Christ before men; he was not ashamed of Christ before that adulterous generation; he gloried that this was his way of pardon, peace, and holiness. Ah, what a change! Once he blasphemed the name of Jesus, and persecuted to the death those that called on His name; now it is all his boast. "Straightway he preached Christ in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God." Once he gloried in his blameless life when he was among Pharisees; now he glories in this, that he is the chief of sinners, but that Christ died for such as he. Once he gloried in his learning when he sat at the feet of Gamaliel; now he glories in being reckoned a fool for Christ’s sake, in being a little child, led by the hand of Jesus. At the Lord’s Table, among his friends, in heathen cities, at Athens, at Rome, among the wise or unwise, before kings and princes, he glories in it as the only thing worthy of being known—the way of salvation by Jesus Christ and Him crucified.

Dear friends, have you been brought to glory only in the cross of Christ?

Have you given over the old way of salvation by the deeds of the law? Your natural heart is set upon that way. You are always for making yourself better and better, till you can lay God under obligation to pardon you. You are always for looking in for righteousness. You are looking in at your convictions and sorrow for past sins, your tears and anxious prayers; or you are looking in at your amendment, the forsaking of wicked courses and struggles after a new life; or you are looking at your own religious exercises, your fervency and enlarged heart in prayer, or in the house of God; or you are looking at the work of the Holy Spirit in you, the graces of the Spirit. Alas! alas! The bed is shorter than that you can stretch yourself on it, the covering is narrower than that you can wrap yourself in it. Despair of pardon in that way. Give it up forever. Your heart is desperately wicked. Every righteousness in which your heart has anything to do is vile and polluted, and cannot appear in His sight. Count it all loss, filthy rags, dung, that you may win Christ.

Betake to the Lord Jesus Christ. Believe the love of the Lord Jesus Christ. He delights in mercy; He is ready to forgive; in Him compassions flow; He justifies the ungodly. Have you seen the glory of the cross of Jesus? Has it attracted your heart? Do you feel unspeakably pleased with that way of salvation? Do you see that God is glorified when you are saved? That God is a God of majesty, truth, unsullied holiness, and inflexible justice, and yet you are justified? Does the cross of Christ kill your heart; Does it make a great calm in your soul, a heavenly rest? Do you love that word: "the righteousness of God," the righteousness which is by faith, the righteousness without works? Do you sit within sight of the cross? Does your soul rest there?

Glory only in the cross of Christ. Observe, there cannot be a secret Christian. Grace is like ointment hid in the hand, it betrays itself. A lively Christian cannot keep silence. If you truly feel the sweetness of the cross of Christ, you will be constrained to confess Christ before men. "It is like the best wine, that goes down sweetly, causing lips to speak." Do you confess Him in your family? Do you make it known there that you are Christ’s? Remember, you must be decided in your own house. It is the mark of a hypocrite to be a Christian everywhere except at home. Among your companions, do you own Him a friend whom you have found? In the shop and in the market, are you willing to be known as a man washed in the blood of the Lamb? Do you long that all your dealings be under the sweet rules of the gospel? Come, then, to the Lord’s Table, and confess Him that has saved your soul. Oh, grant that it may be a true, free, and full confession. This is my sweet food, my lamb, my righteousness, my Lord and my God, my all in all. "God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross." Once you gloried in riches, friends, fame, sin; now in a crucified Jesus.

The effects —"The world is crucified to me, and I unto the world"

"If any man be in Christ Jesus, he is a new creature." When the blind beggar of Jericho got his eyes opened by the Lord, this world was all changed to him, and he to the world. So it was with Paul. No sooner did he rise from his knees, with the peace of Jesus in his heart, than the world got its deathblow in his eyes. As he hurried over the smooth stones of the streets of Damascus, or looked down from the flat roof of his house upon the lovely gardens on the banks of the Abana, the world and all its dazzling show seemed to his eye a poor, shriveled, crucified thing. Once it was his all. Once its soft and slippery flatteries were pleasant as music to his ear. Riches, beauty, pleasure, all that the natural eye admires, his heart was once set upon; but the moment he believed on Jesus, all these began to die. True, they were not dead, but they were nailed to a cross. They no more had that living attraction for him they once had; and now every day they began to lose their power. As a dying man on the cross grows weaker and weaker every moment, while his heart’s blood trickles from the deep gashes in his hands and feet, so the world, that was once his all, began to lose every moment its attractive power. He tasted so much sweetness in Christ, in pardon, access to God, the smile of God, the indwelling Spirit, that the world became every day a more tasteless world to him.

Another effect was, "I to the world."—As Paul laid his hand upon his own bosom, he felt that it also was changed. Once it was as a mettled race horse that paces the ground and cannot be bridled in; once it was like the foxhounds on the scent, impatient of the leash. His heart thus rushed after fame, honor, worldly praise; but now it was nailed to the cross, a broken, contrite heart. True, it was not dead. Many a fitful start his old nature gave, that drove him to his knees and made him cry for grace to help; but still, the more he looked to the cross of Jesus, the more his old heart began to die. Every day he felt less desire for sin, more desire for Christ, and God, and perfect holiness.

Some may discover that they have never come to Christ. Has the world been crucified to you? Once it was your all—its praise, its riches, its songs, and merrymakings. Has it been nailed to the cross in your sight? Oh! put your hand on your heart. Has it lost its burning desire after earthly things? They that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh, with its affections and lusts. Do you feel that Jesus has put the nails through your lusts? Do you wish they were dead? What answer can you make, sons and daughters of pleasure, to whom the dance, and song, and the glass, and witty repartee, are the sum of happiness? You are none of Christ’s.

What answer can you make, lovers of money, sordid moneymakers, who had rather have a few more sovereigns than the grace of God in your heart? What answer can you make, flesh–pleasers, night–walkers, lovers of darkness? You are not Christ’s. You have not come to Christ. The world is all alive to you, and you are living to the world. You cannot glory in the cross, and love the world. Ah! poor deluded souls, you have never seen the glory of the way of pardon by Jesus. Go on; love the world; grasp every pleasure; gather heaps of money; feed and fatten on your lusts; take your fill. What will it profit you when you lose your own soul?

Some are saying, Oh, that the world were crucified to me, and I to the world! Oh, that my heart were as dead as a stone to the world, and alive to Jesus! Do you truly wish it? Look, then, to the cross. Behold the amazing gift of love. Salvation is promised to a look. Sit down, like Mary, and gaze upon a crucified Jesus. So will the world, become a dim and dying thing. When you gaze upon the sun, it makes everything else dark; when you taste honey, it makes everything else tasteless: so when your soul feeds on Jesus, it takes away the sweetness of all earthly things; praise, pleasure, fleshly lusts, all lose their sweetness. Keep a continued gaze. Run, looking unto Jesus. Look, till the way of salvation by Jesus fills up the whole horizon, so glorious and peace–speaking. So will the world be crucified to you, and you unto the world.

By Robert Murray McCheyne as preached on 25 Oct 1840

(Edited from reprint in Memoirs and Remains of R.M. McCheyne, Christian Classics Foundation, 1997)

Robert Murray M'Cheyne (1813-1843) was educated at Edinburgh University. In 1835, he became Assistant at Lambert (near Stirling). In 1836, he was ordained Minister of St. Pe­ter’s Established Church in Dundee. In 1839, he went to Palestine as one of the Mis­sion of Enquiry to the Jews from the Church of Scotland.

More Lively Hope

 

Announcements

Kitchen Roster: Today’s Team Leader: Bro Raphael Ng. Next Lord’s Day: Volunteer.
*Welcome to our pulpit: Rev Pong Sen Yiew
*Hope Bookstore: Open today: 12:30 - 1:45 pm
*Candidates for Baptism & Membership Transfer - please hand in your testimonies to Ps Weng by today.
*New Basic Bible Knowledge Class starts 25 Aug.
*Reminder: All members expected to attend ACM.


Praise & Thanksgiving
Journey mercies: Rev & Mrs Pong Sen Yiew (Adl); Bro Ngie Joo & Sis Sooi Chin Gong (Per); Sisters Michelle Jap (Jakarta) & Alice Lee (Melb); & others who are travelling.  
Fellowship & contribution to Hope: Sis Michelle Jap.
God’s Guidance in Surgery: Sis Michelle Lee (Melb)
University graduation: Bro Lucas Yiew (Tas)
Church Activities, in the past week.
God’s daily mercy, guidance & blessings.
Visitors & new worshippers.


Prayer Items
Health & God’s healing - Dr Gary Cohen (USA), Dr SH Tow (S’pore); Rev George van Buuren; Pastor Okman & Sis Myung Ki; Rev & Mrs James White; Bro Colin & Sis Kathleen Creaser; Preacher Zhang (Sihanoukville); Grandpa Ki (S’pore); Bros Surish Dharmalingam (Laos), Elton Law & Kang Fun Tan (S’pore); Sisters Lai Kheng Chiong (KL), Choon Fong Lee (KL), Lehia Paauwe, Margaret Pearson, Corinne Teng, Susan Varadi (Nursing Home) & Audrey Yeo; Mr Swee Liang Ng; Mr Mang Soo Ong; Bro Peng Cheong Wong (Dn Wai Kin Wong’s father); Mrs Maggie D’Mello; Mr Tony Zhang; & others in affliction.
Special Prayer: Rev Edward Paauwe (surgery); Bro Len Pearson (Lobethal); Sisters Margaret Hooper (post-surgery), Michelle Lee (post- surgery) & Mavis Wong’s mother (salvation & surgery)
God’s comfort in grief: Sis Sooi Chin Gong & family; Sis Clara Samels & family.
iSketch & Tell Studio, YouTube Ministry & preparation for Ordination: Ps Hai Seng Lim.
Cambodia Missions - Rev Moses Hahn & Ministry (Sihanoukville); Bro Sun Sokha (Phnom Penh)
Kuching Missions: Bro Jeremy Teo & family.
Ministry in New Life BPC (London) & God’s guidance for the future: Ps & Sis Ki.
Ministry in Hope BPC - God’s guidance for future - Ps & Sis Weng.  
Journey mercies: Rev & Mrs Pong Sen Yiew (Tas); Bros Joseph Selvanayagam (Gold Coast/Adl) & Lucas Yiew (Tas); & Sis Alice Lee (Adl); &  others who are travelling.  
Interpreters of sermon into Mandarin.
Full-time Job - Bros Timothy Ngoma & Jonathan Liao (Syd); Sisters Corinne Teng & Sharon Ying (Per); & others looking for  stable jobs.
Australian Visas - Sisters Clara Sim & Sharon Ying (Perth - for PR).
Hope BPC - for new Pastor; ACM, New Session candidates & Election.
God’s guidance & direction - Sisters Michelle Jap (Jakarta) & Felicia Tan (S’pore).
Candidates for Baptism & Membership Transfer.
Year 12 students: for strength & encouragement in their studies.

 

 

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PO Box 398, Fullarton, Adelaide, South Australia 5063