The Happy Man

The happy man was born in the city of Regeneration

in the parish of Repentance unto life.

He was educated at the school of Obedience.

He has a large estate in the county of Christian Contentment,

and many times does jobs of Self-denial,

wears the garment of Humility,

and has another suit to put on when he goes to Court,

called the Robe of Christ’s Righteousness.

He often walks in the valley of Self-Abasement,

and sometimes climbs the mountains of Heavenly-mindedness.

He breakfasts every morning on Spiritual Prayer,

and sups every evening on the same.

He has meat to eat that the world knows not of,

and his drink is the sincere milk of the Word of God.

Thus happy he lives, and happy he dies.

Happy is he who has Gospel submission in his will,

due order in his affections,

sound peace in his conscience,

real Divinity in his breast,

the Redeemer’s yoke on his neck,

a vain world under his feet,

and a crown of glory over his head.

Happy is the life of that man who believes firmly, prays fervently,

walks patiently, works abundantly,

lives holy, dies daily,

watches his heart, guides his senses, redeems his time,

loves Christ, and longs for glory.

He is necessitated to take the world on his way to heaven,

but he walks through it as fast as he can,

and all his business by the way is to make himself and others happy.

Take him all in all, in two words,

he is a Man and a Christian.

“The Happy Man” is taken from The Happy Man – The Abiding Witness of Lachlan MacKenzie (Edinburgh: Banner of Truth, 1979), p 5. Reprinted from the volumes transcribed by Mr James Campbell and published in 1928 and 1930.

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Come Out and Be Separate

JC Ryle

“There is a widely-spread desire to make things pleasant in religion – to saw off the corners and edges of the cross, and to avoid, as far as possible, self-denial. On every side we hear professing Christians declaring loudly that we must not be “narrow and exclusive” and that there is no harm in many things which the holiest of saints of old thought bad for their souls.”

“That we may go anywhere, and do anything, and spend our time in anything, and read anything, and keep any company, and plunge into anything, and all the while may be very good Christians – this is the maxim of thousands. In a day like this I think it good to raise a warning voice, and invite attention to the teaching of God’s Word. It is written in that Word, ‘Come out and be separate.’”

J.C. Ryle (1816-1900) Practical Religion “The World ” p.284, 285

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Motives in Christian Ministry (2)

Today, from “Possessing the Treasure” …

For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:5-6 ESV)

… As we minister in whatever capacity God has gifted us, we must proclaim His truth His way, while completely avoiding self-promotion. This is why marketing techniques and any form of manipulation to try to get the results we want is not of God.

We are to preach Jesus and Him crucified and we are to simply be His servants for His sake alone. As we give the gospel to this lost and dying world, we are actually shining the light of the gospel into the darkness. The gospel illumines how Christ’s death on the cross makes it possible for God’s people to be in His presence, having been transformed by God’s presence and not destroyed by it. Like Paul we are to preach the crucified Christ as Lord, and then we must live out the gospel in the service of our hearers or readers.

Reference:

Possessing the Treasure

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When I Survey The Wondrous Cross

by Issac Watts

(Galatians 6:14)

When I survey the wondrous Cross

Where the young Prince of Glory died,

My richest gain I count but loss,

And pour contempt on all my pride.

Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast

Save in the death of Christ, my God;

All the vain things that charm me most,

I sacrifice them to his blood.

See from his head, his hands, his feet,

Sorrow and love flow mingled down;

Did e’er such love and sorrow meet?

Or thorns compose so rich a crown?

His dying crimson like a robe

Spreads o’er his body on the Tree,

Then am I dead to all the globe,

And all the globe is dead to me.

Were the whole realm of nature mine,

That were a present far too small;

Love so amazing, so divine,

Demands my soul, my life, my all.

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