Category Archives: Book Quotes

A Most Precious Remedy

The following paragraph comes from Thomas Brooks’ book “Precious Remedies Against Satan’s Devices.” 

Remedy (4) Seriously consider that even those very sins that Satan paints, and puts new names and colors upon, cost the best blood, the noblest blood, the life-blood, the heart-blood of the Lord Jesus.

That Christ should come from the eternal bosom of his Father to a region of sorrow and death.

That God should be manifested in the flesh, the creator made a creature.

That he that was clothed with glory should be wrapped with rags of flesh.

He that filled heaven and earth with his glory should be cradled in a manger.

That the power of God should fly from weak man, the God of Israel into Egypt.  Continue reading

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Filed under Book Quotes, Christian Meditation, Puritans, Spiritual Warfare

Twelve Tools To Help Someone With Depression

This list comes from John Thompson’s book Urban Impact: Reaching the World through Effective Urban Ministry. 2010. Pgs. 95-97

1. A depressed person should open the shades of his house and let the light in. He should not live in a dark, dingy house. Researchers agree that sunlight can reduce the effects of Seasonal Affective Disorder—more commonly known as seasonal depression. A commonly accepted belief is that the lack of natural chemicals in the body such as serotonin promotes depression. Indirect sunlight entering the eye gate stimulates the body’s production and release of this chemical.

2. He should get out of the house, go for a walk, go to church, and force himself to spend time with godly friends. A person suffering from severe depression can stay locked in his house for months and even years at a time. To break the hold that depression has on him, he needs to take steps to change his environment. Continue reading

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Filed under Book Quotes, Christian Living, Counseling, Discipleship, Sanctification

God’s Sovereignty Over Sin

The following is an excerpt from John Frame’s book The Doctrine of GodChapter 9, “The Problem of Evil.” The headings are added by David Mathis; the paragraphs are Dr. Frame’s.

God Is Sovereign Over Sin

. . . God does harden hearts, and through his prophets he predicts sinful human actions long in advance, indicating that he is in control of human free decisions. Now theologians have found it difficult to formulate in general terms how God acts to bring about those sinful actions. . . . Do we want to say that God is the “cause” of evil? That language is certainly problematic, since we usually associate cause with blame. . . . [I]t seems that if God causes sin and evil, he must be to blame for it.

Words: The Theologian’s Tools

Therefore, there has been much discussion among theologians as to what verb should best describes God’s agency in regard to evil. Some initial possibilities: authors, brings about, causes, controls, creates, decrees, foreordains, incites, includes within his plan, makes happen, ordains, permits, plans, predestines, predetermines, produces, stands behind, wills. Many of these are extra-scriptural terms; none of them are perfectly easy to define in this context. So theologians need to give some careful thought about which of these terms, if any, should be affirmed, and in what sense. Words are the theologian’s tools. In a situation like this, none of the possibilities is fully adequate. There are various advantages and disadvantages among the different terms. Let us consider some of those that are most frequently discussed. Continue reading

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Filed under Apologetics, Book Quotes, Doctrine, God, Theology

Playing At Prayer

Spurgeon did not make the gathering of a crowd his first interest. In view of the spiritual warfare in which the Christian is placed, he was concerned first of all that his people learn truly to pray.

Of course, during previous months the New Park Street people had prayed. But their prayers were little more than nicely worded phrases, unctionless petitions uttered in a rather formal manner.

To Spurgeon prayer was something far superior to mere surface activity. He talked with God in reverence but with freedom and familiarity. In his prayers there were none of the tired expressions many ministers use, but he spoke as a child coming to a loving parent. A fellow minister declared, “Prayer was the instinct of his soul and the atmosphere of his life. It was his ‘vital breath’ and ‘native air.’ He sped on eagles wings into the heaven of God,” as he prayed. (C.H. Spurgeon’s Prayers, p. vi)

So real was Spurgeon’s praying that the formal effort showed in glaring contrast beside it. “I can readily tell,” he stated, “when a brother is praying, or when he is only performing, or playing at prayer…Oh for a living groan! One sigh of the soul has more power in it than half an hour’s recitation of pretty pious words. Oh! for a sob from the soul, or a tear from the heart.” (The Forgotten Spurgeon, p. 33)

He knew that God’s power was manifested in the services in proportion as God’s people truly prayed, and that in such proportion also souls were brought under conviction and drawn to Christ.

Some of them undoubtedly had a difficult struggle to overcome the formal practices of previous years, but they persisted, and little by little they began to wrestle with God in true prayer… Numerous men and women were converted, several institutions developed, various buildings were erected, and their work had its effect to the ends of the earth. All the time true prayer rose to God.

When someone once asked Spurgeon the secret of his success, he replied, “My people pray for me.” He meant not prayer in the usual formal and unexpectant manner but wrestling with God in living faith that He would answer.

The above post is selected expert from page 48-49 of Arnold Dallimore’s book “Spurgeon: A New Biography.”

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This Is The Bread

We have great demands, but Christ has great supplies. Between here and heaven, we may have greater wants than we have yet known. But all along the journey, every resting place is ready; provisions are laid up, good cheer is stored, and nothing has been overlooked. The com missionary of the Eternal is absolutely perfect.

Do you sometimes feel so thirsty for grace that you could drink the Jordan dry? More than a river could hold is given to you, so drink abundantly, for Christ has prepared a bottomless sea of grace to fill you with all the fullness of God. Do not be frugal. Do not doubt your Savior. Do not limit the Holy One of Israel. Be great in your experience of His all-sufficiency. Be great in your praises of His bounty, and in heaven you will pour great treasures of gratitude at His feet.

The above post is an excerpt from pg. 12 of Charles Spurgeon’s devotional book  “Beside Still Waters.” A meditation of Exodus 16:15 called “This Is The Bread.”

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Filed under Book Quotes, Exodus, God

The Word of God Is God

In its primary sense, the word of God is none other than God. This is supported by the first verses of the gospel of John, where it is written that “in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” The bible itself declares that, strictly speaking, the Word of God is none other than God the Son, the Second Person of the Trinity, the Word who was made flesh and dwelt among us.

Therefore, when God speaks, we are not simply given information; also, and above all, God acts. This is what is meant in the book of Genesis, where the Word of God is a creating force: “God said, let there be … and there was.” When God speaks, that which is uttered is also created. God’s Word, besides telling us something, creates something in us and in all creation. That creative and powerful Word is Christ, whose incarnation is both God’s greatest revelation and God’s greatest action. In Jesus, God was revealed to us. And also in Jesus, God overcame the powers of evil that held us in subjection. God’s revelation is also God’s victory.

Anyone who reads the Bible and somehow does not find Jesus in it, has not encountered the Word of God!

Justo L. Gonzalez on Martin Luther’s doctrine of the Word from his book “The Story of Christianity: Volume II – The Reformation to the Present Day” on pages 47-48

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Filed under Book Quotes, Church History, Revelation, Scripture

Special Subjects of Supplication

“Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.” (Acts 26:28)

Notwithstanding his bonds, Paul is to be envied that he had an opportunity of addressing himself to kings and rulers, and that once at least in his life he stood before the great master of the Roman world, the Emperor himself. To reach the ignorant who sit on thrones is no mean feat for benevolence. Alas I the gospel seldom climbs the high places of rank and dignity. It is a great act of mercy towards nobles and princes, when they have the opportunity of hearing a faithful gospel discourse. Highly favored was Edward VI. to have such a preacher as Hugh Latimer, to tell him to his face the truth as it is in Jesus; and much favored was Agrippa, though he scarcely appreciated the privilege, to listen to so earnest an advocate of the gospel of Jesus as Paul the apostle.

We ought to pray much more than we do for men in high places, because they have many bewitching temptations and less gracious opportunities than even the humblest paupers. There is less likelihood of the gospel ever affecting their hearts, than of its converting the poor and needy. We should make them therefore specially the subjects of supplication, and then we might hope to see consecrated coronets far more frequently. Continue reading

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Filed under 1 Timothy, Acts, Book Quotes, Politics, Prayer