1 PETER 4
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11 If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
"If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God."
Therefore, dear brother, be earnest; avoid affectation and mere showing off, and, above all, talk sense. Remember that your theme is momentous and sacred, and calls for honest, humble, and painstaking effort.
Aim at arresting with edifying matter. Forget not that a good, sound thought, however roughly expressed, is worth a score of high-sounding phrases with nothing in them. In view of this, seek to enrich your mind with ideas.
Ideas are the product of study and thought. If they exist, words will quickly be found to convey them. Be fair; be logical. Neither strain meanings, misrepresent, nor indulge in clap-trap. Preach for the enlightenment of your hearers, not for self-glorification. Hide self, and let God be seen and heard.
Bro AT Jannaway
The Christadelphian, March 1899
This is the true communion of Spirit. Man has no Spirit in himself, except his physical power of subsistence. He has not the Spirit in that relation that would connect him with the divine intelligence as the children of God will be connected in the perfect state. He must, therefore, attach himself to the only channel in which in our age the Spirit flows. The ideas of the Spirit of God are for us at present in the Bible and nowhere else.
There was a day when they flashed and sparkled by inspiration direct from the Spirit of God to the prophets and apostles; but, in our day, that refreshing operation is in abeyance, as foretold. In this respect our position is less privileged than the position of the saints in the apostolic age. All the more reason why we should avail ourselves to the utmost of the privilege which is ours in possessing the written Oracles of Yahweh's Truth.
...As we sit at our reading of "the Law and the Prophets," we receive the messages transmitted ages ago to distant times. By those messages we are brought into touch with many things that were living realities in their day, and that arch over our head to another day, when they will be greater realities still.
18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?
Sinners and Life in Christ
Q. T.-("If there is no life out of Christ, where do sinners get the life from that they are punished in at the resurrection?")
You reason from a fallacy. It is not true that there is no mortal life out of Christ. There is any amount of mortal life out of Christ, as you well know. If you say you mean immortal life, the bottom is out of your question. Sinners never do receive immortal life, but only the accepted after judgment.
Sinners raised to be punished at the resurrection get their life from where every living creature gets it: they get it from God. Only they get it direct by the hand of Christ who is the resurrection power, whereas ordinary creatures get it indirectly from the thousand processes that God has originated in nature.
The Christadelphian, Dec 1898
This judgment begins with the judgment of the saints in the presence of Christ; and as they are now exhorted to " work out their salvation with fear and trembling " ; and however excellent their Christian character, are not judges in their own case ; for even Paul said, " I
judge not myself " : so they appear at his tribunal with more or less of the feeling of misgiving Daniel had before he was strengthened, consequent upon peace being pronounced upon him.
Because of the certainty of this state of mind being that of the most excellent of the
saints in the Divine Presence, the beloved apostle exhorts the faithful to a certain course of spiritual life in the present world ; that " when he shall appear, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before him at his coming " (1 Jno. ii. 28). "
By loving in deed and in truth," says he, " we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure
our hearts before him. For if our heart condemn us, the Deity is greater than our hearts, and knoweth all things. Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, THEN have we confidence towards Deity " (1 Jno. iii. 19-21).
The only way, then, for the righteous to approach the dread tribunal in the spirit evinced by Paul in 2 Tim. iv. 7-8, is to "walk so as we have Him for an example " ; and he walked " in
the steps of Abraham's faith," and after the example of Jesus Christ. In this way we may attain to the degree of excellence which will give us " boldness in the day of judgment " (1 John iv. 17) ; otherwise, not only timidity, but a vivid apprehension of being put to shame before Him and the angelic apparitors of His court, will be the enervating feeling attendant upon us, when we report ourselves in the presence of the Judge.
Now, this judgment, which begins at the House of the Deity, is styled by Paul, in Heb. vi. 2, aionian judicial trial. It is termed aionian, because the great spiritual assize is opened for the examination of cases aspiring to the glory, honour, and immortality of the kingdom " in the last day."