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    A conversion is incomplete if it does not leave Jesus Christ in the central place in one's life. The shortest possible description of a Christian -- a description with which the New Testament would fully agree -- is that a Christian is a person who can say: "For me Jesus Christ is Lord." Herbert Butterfield's words about facing the future are good: "Hold to Christ, and for the rest be totally uncommitted." Any alleged conversion which does not leave one totally committed solely to Jesus Christ is incomplete and imperfect. (Continued tomorrow).

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  24  /  26  

Love is the greatest thing that God can give us; for Himself is love: and it is the greatest thing read more

Love is the greatest thing that God can give us; for Himself is love: and it is the greatest thing we can give to God; for it will also give ourselves, and carry with it all that is ours. The apostle calls it the band of perfection; it is the old, and it is the new, and it is the great commandment, and it is all the commandments; for it is the fulfilling of the Law. It does the work of all the graces without any instrument but its own immediate virtue. For as the love of sin makes a man sin against all his own reason, and all the discourses of wisdom, and all the advices of his friends, and without temptation and without opportunity, so does the love of God: it makes a man chaste without the laborious arts of fasting and exterior disciplines, temperate in the midst of feasts, and is active enough to choose it without any intermedial appetites, and reaches at glory through the very heart of grace, without any other aims but those of love. It is a grace that loves God for Himself, and our neighbors for God. The consideration of God's goodness and bounty, the experience of those profitable and excellent emanations from Him, may be, and most commonly are, the first motive of our love; but when we are once entered, and have tasted the goodness of God, we love the spring for its own excellency, passing from passion to reason, from thanking to adoring, from sense to spirit, from considering ourselves to union with God: and this is the image and little representation of heaven; it is beatitude in picture, or rather the infancy and beginning of glory.

by Jeremy Taylor Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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  14  /  19  

Feast of Alfred the Great, King of the West Saxons, Scholar, 899 Commemoration of Cedd, Founding Abbot of Lastingham, Bishop read more

Feast of Alfred the Great, King of the West Saxons, Scholar, 899 Commemoration of Cedd, Founding Abbot of Lastingham, Bishop of the East Saxons, 664 We cannot understand the depth of the Christian doctrine of sin if we give to it only a moral connotation. To break the basic laws of justice and decency is sin indeed. Man's freedom to honor principles is the moral dimension in his nature, and sin often appears as lawlessness. But sin has its roots in something which is more than the will to break the law. The core of sin is our making ourselves the center of life, rather than accepting the holy God as the center. Lack of trust, self-love, pride -- these are three ways in which Christians have expressed the real meaning of sin. But what sin does is to make the struggle with evil meaningless. When we refuse to hold our freedom in trust and reverence for God's will, there is nothing which can make the risk of life worth the pain of it.

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  12  /  17  

[From our side] our relation to God is unrighteous. Secretly we are ourselves the masters in this relationship. We are read more

[From our side] our relation to God is unrighteous. Secretly we are ourselves the masters in this relationship. We are not concerned with God, but with our own requirements, to which God must adjust Himself. Our arrogance demands that, in addition to everything else, some super-world should also be known and accessible to us. Our conduct calls for some deeper sanction, some approbation and remuneration from another world. Our well-regulated, pleasurable life longs for some hours of devotion, some prolongation into infinity. And so, when we set God upon the throne of the world, we mean by God ourselves. In "believing" on Him, we justify, enjoy, and adore ourselves.

by Karl Barth Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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Commemoration of Francis Xavier, Apostle of the Indies, Missionary, 1552 There is a curious betrayal of the popular estimate read more

Commemoration of Francis Xavier, Apostle of the Indies, Missionary, 1552 There is a curious betrayal of the popular estimate of this world and the world to come, in the honour paid to those who cast away life in battle, or sap it slowly in the pursuit of wealth or honours, and the contempt expressed for those who compromise life on behalf of souls, for which Christ died. Whenever, by exertion in any unselfish cause, health is broken or fortune impaired, or influential friends estranged, the follower of Christ is called an enthusiast, a fanatic, or even more plainly a man of unsound mind. He may be comforted by remembering that Jesus was said to be beside Himself when teaching and healing left Him not leisure even to eat.

by G. A. Chadwick Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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  17  /  31  

Commemoration of Katherine of Alexandria, Martyr, 4th century "The Law", he says, "was our 'pedagogue', until Christ should come." read more

Commemoration of Katherine of Alexandria, Martyr, 4th century "The Law", he says, "was our 'pedagogue', until Christ should come." Those words have been interpreted as though they described the Law as a preparatory education, continued at a higher stage by Christ. That, however, is not quite what Paul meant. The "pedagogue" in Greek society was not a schoolmaster, he did not give lessons. He was a slave who accompanied a boy to school, and both waited upon him and exercised a supervision which interfered with the boy's freedom of action. He is, in fact, a figure in the little allegory which Paul gives us to illustrate the position of the People of God before Christ came. There was a boy left heir to a great estate. He was a minor, and so must have guardians and trustees. He was as helpless in their hands as if he had been a slave. He must live on the allowance they gave him, and follow their wishes from day to day. They gave him a "pedagogue" to keep him out of mischief. He could not please himself, or realize his own purposes and ambitions. Yet all the time he was the heir; the estate was his, and no one else's. Just so the People of God, the Divine Commonwealth, was cramped and fettered by ignorance and evil times. It remained in uneasy expectation of one day coming into active existence. At last the heir came of age: guardians and trustees abdicated their powers, and the grown man possessed in full realization all that was his. So now the fettered life of the Divine Commonwealth bursts its bonds and comes into active existence... The intervention of law was not a reversal of God's original and eternal purpose of pure love and grace towards men, it only subserved that purpose, while it seemed to contradict it, just as the presence of the "pedagogus" might seem to the high-spirited young heir quite contrary to the rights secured to him by his father's will.

by C. H. Dodd Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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Nothing shall be lost that is done for God or in obedience to Him.

Nothing shall be lost that is done for God or in obedience to Him.

by John Owen Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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  14  /  22  

It was a real body; there can be no doubt about that. Hundreds of people could not have been so read more

It was a real body; there can be no doubt about that. Hundreds of people could not have been so mistaken, especially when Jesus offered clear evidence of it. But it was not an earthbound body. It was something that bore a developmental relationship to an earthly human body, but it was not identical with it. There was clearly a continuity of life between the body of Jesus and the body of the resurrected Jesus, but in the process of resurrection it had undergone a very fundamental change. That, at least, seems obvious. So much for the list of dissimilarities; the body of Jesus after the resurrection had a different appearance and also a different "form". It was "like" the previous body, it had some sort of developmental relationship to it, but it was obviously not "identical" with it. Now we must consider the similarities. Strangely, they all came down to one factor, but that factor is so important that it outweighs all the dissimilarities. It is simply this: Jesus before and after the resurrection was undeniably the same person. No matter what extraordinary changes had taken place in his bodily form, all who knew him well had no doubt at all who he was. They "knew" it was the Lord.

by David Winter Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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Feast of Matthias the Apostle Much of the present dilemma and chaotic condition of both the secular and read more

Feast of Matthias the Apostle Much of the present dilemma and chaotic condition of both the secular and religious worlds today finds its cause with the setting aside of the "thus saith the Lord" by the clergy. A long series of rejections and subsequent attendant conditions follow the rejections of the Bible as God's Word. Next to that rejection has come the rejection of the God of the Bible. Next, there usually follows a rejection of the Bible's presentation of man as a lost rebel against God, [and then] comes the rejection of biblical morality and ethics. [After] all of these, the next step is a short one--the rejection of biblical obedience to the laws of God and man. And, of course, many more items of rejection can be added to the list. But the crucial point here is that all of these can be traced back to the initial rejection of the absolute authority of Holy Writ.

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  21  /  20  

Rest in the Lord; wait patiently for Him. In Hebrew, "Be silent in God, and let Him mould thee." Keep read more

Rest in the Lord; wait patiently for Him. In Hebrew, "Be silent in God, and let Him mould thee." Keep still, and He will mould thee to the right shape.

by Martin Luther Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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