| None But the Hungry Heart - Devotionals by Miles Stanford|
I thought I should encourage believers by this extract from C.A. Coates from the book "None But the Hungry Heart" by Miles Stanford.
Before God could use His servants, He had to bring them to the end of themselves. He had to teach them that self-confidence -no matter what its form- could only result in defeat. Many of these servants had to spend years of struggling in the "self-life" before they learned to depend on the Risen Lord Jesus to be their All in All. This is what Coates says:
"I had to see about some work being done the other day, and was asking the contractor how much it would cost. 'It won't cost very much,' said he, 'because we can use all the old material.' Now that is precisely what God could not do. There must be a new start altogether with new material. God rejects the old material altogether and begins entirely anew, and the one who is born again begins to learn the true character of the old material -i.e. all that he is as a child of Adam and a man in the flesh -and to be as dissatisfied with it as God is. You may see this in Job and Saul of Tarsus. One of them said, "I abhor myself," and the other said, "I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) dwelleth no good thing." Such language as this is the mark of one born again. He identifies himself with that new "inward man" which is of God, and he judges everything of a contrary nature to be sin. In itself this is not a happy experience. It is not very pleasant for one who has been self-sustained and self-satisfied in a moral and religious life to find that there is not one bit of good in him. Some may discover this by a single flash of divine light, as in the case of Saul of Tarsus, and others may have years of struggling and disappointment before they learn it, but it must and will be learned sooner or later by every one that is born again.
"You might be very well up in the doctrine of deliverance (Gal 2:20), and yet all the time be secretly attempting to correct and improve yourself, and suffering a good deal of private vexation and disappointment on account of the failure of your attempts. I know how long I struggled on in this way myself, praying and striving to be more holy and Christ-like, and continually disappointed with the result. I do not think that it ever occurred to me in those days that I was trying to improve the man whom God had set aside. It was at a moment when I was utterly discouraged, and ready to give up the whole thing in complete despair, that God showed me how I was attempting to work upon the old material which He could only condemn, and that my disgust and despair as to myself were only a feeble echo of His. I shall never forget the joy of finding out that in the depth of my disgust with myself I was thoroughly at one with God. God had ceased to look for any good in me and had Christ before Him, the perfect and infinitely acceptable Object of His heart; and I, in my nothingness, had ceased to look for good in myself, and was tasting the deep joy of being IN CHRIST, and free to have Him as my Object; while, as to life, I entered in some degree into the blessedness of knowing that it was "not I, but Christ liveth in me."
This discovery of the inability of self to please God is what turned men such as Hudson Taylor, Andrew Murray and George Muller into instruments that could be used by God. In order to do any lasting work for the Lord, we too will need to make that same discovery. Only as we learn to abide in the Vine will we be a vessel that is fit for the Master's use." In None But the Hungry Heart you are introduced to the heart-beat of such men who "walked humbly with God" and "placed no confidence in the flesh."
None But the Hungry Heart is a devotional series that will help in your Christian growth and walk with the Lord. I wonder if any of you have read it?
| 2010/1/11 21:51|
| Re: None But the Hungry Heart - Devotionals by Miles Stanford|
Is there anyone here who has read C A Coates? I believe he was part of the Brethren Movement.
| 2010/1/12 6:13|
| Re: C A Coates|
I was searching the text sermons in Sermon Index and I found just one sermon by C A Coates. I think it is very good & should be most encouraging to our readers. Here it is:
The Importance of Daily Living /
Continuing daily....Acts 2:46
DAILY SEARCHING OF THE SCRIPTURES
I am often surprised that Christians who have listened for years (apparently with interest and attention) to the ministry of the Word know so little of divine things. They seem to enjoy the ministry, their faces are bright in the meetings, and yet when you come to talk to them you find that very little of it has got into their souls. I believe the secret is that they listen to what is said, but value it so little that they do not take the trouble of going to the Scriptures to verify it for themselves. Ministry has its own blessed and important place, but I do not believe any ministry will be of permanent profit to our souls if it is not followed by searching of the Scriptures. They received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily (Acts 17:11).
DAILY WATCHING AT WISDOMS GATE
Are we on the alert to improve our acquaintance with Christ? The great defect of modern Christianity is that there is so little affection for Christ. Many hear what is called a clear gospel, and trusting the Person and work of Christ they get the assurance of the Scriptures that they will never perish, and this seems to satisfy them and they settle down upon it and go to sleep. There is not the earnest longing after Himself, the watching daily at His gates. Did it ever occur to you that Christ values your affections? You belong to Him; you are the object of His love; you are His own. Your heart is Christs property. Is it His dwelling place? Blessed is the man that heareth me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors (Prov. 8:34).
Christendom is full of solemn warnings as to the tendency of our hearts to drop into a routine of religious forms. It is a very great loss to the soul to get into the habit of repeating substantially the same words in prayer every day. It is not real prayer at all. Today is not like yesterday, and tomorrow will not be like today. If you are really with God you will be sensitive to the fresh needs of every day. God delights to have our confidence as to every need and care. Then let us cultivate a childs confidence, and a childs simplicity as we come to Him in prayer. Bring the trying circumstances of today, and the expected difficulties and perplexities of tomorrow. Be merciful unto me, O Lord; for I cry unto thee daily (Ps. 86:3).
What have you had from the Lord today? You may say that you have been reading a very good book, and part of one of the periodicals. I am glad to hear it, but did you get anything from the Lord? Again you may say that you have read one or two chapters in the Bible. I am very thankful for that, but still you might read many chapters without getting anything from the Lord to meet the present need of your soul. Food is that which satisfies a craving (a felt need) and unless we have an appetite there is not even the desire for it. The food of which I speak is the gracious supply to our souls of that which answers the exercises, and meets the need of which we become conscious in our experience day by day. I do not mean your external need, but the need of your heart and spirit, in the various experiences of your soul. May the Lord preserve us from becoming insensible to our daily need that His love delights to supply as our daily bread. Give us this day our daily bread (Matt. 6:11).
To bear the cross is to accept the reproach of being connected with that which is mean and despicable in the eyes of men. The daily cross is not bodily affection or the ordinary trials of life, as so many suppose, for these things are not peculiar to Christians, they are the common lot of mankind. The daily cross is the acceptance day by day of a path and a portion which, so far as this world goes, is one of dishonor and reproach. If we are true to Christ, it will involve the surrender of much that we naturally esteem - the praise of men, and the honors of life in this world. You may be sure that every bit of real testimony for Christ will cost you something. If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me (Lk. 9:23).
There is a constant tendency in our hearts to be discouraged because of the way. I am afraid that many souls backslide and drift away simply because we are not near enough to the Lord, and have not sufficient affection to give them a word of encouragement. You must keep your eye on that which is of God in the saints, and lay yourself out to encourage that. There is something which is of God in every saint; it may be very weak and small, but we must build on and encourage that. We must count on the work of God in the souls of His saints, and seek to help and encourage that which is of Himself in every way. Let none of us think that this is only for teachers and ministers of the Word. This applies to every one of us in our individual contact with each other. But exhort (encourage) one another daily (Heb. 3:13).
| 2010/1/12 6:29|
| Re: |
Thank you for sharing! There are some rich nuggets of truth in these devotionals.
| 2010/1/12 6:38||Profile|
| Re: |
Well, I thank you, Abide, for responding. I was wondering whether your icon is a picture of Watchman Nee. It looks like him, but I could be wrong.
I thought the group here would share more about Coates or others in the Brethren Movement.
| 2010/1/12 8:38|
| Re: |
Hi Pollux, This is a picture of Watchman Nee indeed. Brother Nee's writings have helped me so much in my walk with the Lord.
I found an interesting biography on C.A. Coates.
THE BIOGRAPHY OF
Charles Andrew Coates
C. A. Coates
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The articles in this issue were selected to introduce our readers to another one of our favorite authors.
We were introduced to the writings of Mr. C. A. Coates by accident (?) when we discovered a set of his commentaries on the Pentateuch in a used book sale. It quickly became apparent that we held a real treasure in our hands. Since then, we have found ourselves returning again and again to those original five volumes for the wonderful insight they contain, particularly with respect to the believer's new creation position in Christ.
Somewhere along the way we became aware of C.A.C.'s role in the F. E. Raven controversy, and discovered that there is a deliberate effort being made by some to make his books difficult to find. We have no interest in becoming part of the controversy, but we do not necessarily endorse what we believe to be his position in that. We believe C.A.C. was a deeply spiritual man who had an exemplary relationship with his Lord. Certainly, there are some things in his writings with which we would disagree, but to reject a lifetime of invaluable ministry for the sake of some occasional differences of opinion would give us a library that was sparse indeed.
To those who seem to delight in attacking the character of this dear brother, and others with whom he was associated, we would remind them to "let the prophets speak, and let the others judge" (1 Cor. 14:29), deciding what we, ourselves, determine to be the truth, and leaving it to the Lord to decide who should be numbered with unbelievers and blasphemers. We would all do well to remember that each of us, as mortals in sinful flesh, miss the mark in one way or another (1 John 1:8), and should all consider how we would wish to be treated by those who disagree with us.
Charles Andrew Coates was born on December 7, 1862, in Bradford, Yorkshire, but for the greater part of his life he lived in Teignmouth, Devon, on the south coast of England.
C.A.C.'s references, in later years, to his early family life make it clear that he came from a devoted Christian family. In 1920 he said, "I believe God gives even young children a deep sense of the mercy that has put them in Christian households. I know it was so with myself at a very early age." In December 1905 he wrote of his mother's death: "It was most happy to see how the Lord and His blessed things were before her to the end."
He was soundly converted in 1878 at the age of 16. He was true to his youthful commitment and the Lord took him up for a unique and blessed service.
In a letter about 1900, he wrote of a conversation with a brother regarding Acts 19: "I said that in my own case, when I began to break bread, I believed that Jesus had died for me, and therefore I should never perish. But it was not until some time afterwards that I saw with great delight that everything connected with me as a ruined sinner had been dealt with in the death of Christ, that the risen One was my righteousness, and that I could be with God entirely on the ground of what Christ was."
"I had preached before this in my small measure, doing what Apollos didthat is, making known the grace of God so far as I knew it myself... It is a great pleasure to God when there is a desire, because God desires to give. I prayed for the Spirit after I had received the Spirit (I did not know it at the time), but my prayer was not displeasing to God."
Again, in 1926 he said, "When I was a boy I remember a brother coming to my father's house, and I said to myself, I wish that I knew all that he knows! But another brother came, and he made me feel, I wish I had what he has! There was an impression, not of mere knowledge, but of substance and satisfaction."
In the same year he recalled, "My father used to say that there was not much difference between high Calvinists and low Arminians because the former had bad self before them and the latter had good self before them, but neither of them had Christ before them."
Around 1928 in a reading on Joshua 15, he said in reference to Kirjath-sepher, "A great deal of spiritual vitality is sapped by the kind of reading that Christians indulge in habitually... In Acts 19 we read they had a bonfire and burnt the worth in books of fifty thousand pieces of silver. When I was converted I had a bonfire and I never regretted it. It is much better to burn such books than to take them to the bookstall to poison someone else."
Around 1940 Mr. Coates said in a reading: "One of the first thoughts I had when converted was, 'Man's thoughts never rise above service and God's thoughts never go below sonship,' and I put it into my first preaching."
In a reading on Matthew 4 he said: "I remember Mr. Stoney used to say that a man's natural calling always had some reference to his service... So Paul is a tent-maker. That is, when he was called in grace he became a true tent-maker to set up the assemblies in tabernacle form that is, provisionally, and not permanently. So we have the true elements for our service in our natural calling.
"I remember once when Mr. Stoney was at my father's table he said, 'I was training for law, intending to move in a circuit, and that is what I am now doing!' My father replied, 'I was a shepherd'. 'Exactly', said Mr. Stoney, 'And now you are a shepherd still!' It served to remind us there are no loose ends in God's ways."
Mr. Coates suffered from physical weakness for a good part of his life. At some point he moved from Yorkshire to Teignmouth, Devonprobably for his healthhis service being largely restricted to that area.
He took a clear stand against worldly methods in preaching the gospel and against accepting the standards of the world to govern the Christian's lifeall the while maintaining the spirit of grace.
On December 12, 1939, he wrote: "It has been a very definite exercise with me ever since I began to break bread that the printed ministry ought not to be made the source of financial profit. The first tracts which I wrote, about 55 years ago (about age 22), I published myself at cost price. But the Tract Depots did not approve of profits being eliminated, and I had at that time to fall in with the system current. But I clung to the thought that the Lord's work should not be regarded as a profit making business."
C.A.C.'s printed ministrynow completecomprise 34 volumes of outlines, letters, addresses and readings, as well as numerous booklets and gospel tracts.
HIS LAST DAYS
Our brother's health and general condition began to show a marked deterioration about October 1944, and from that time onwards he was unable to get to meetings regularly, and was frequently under medical care. From time to time he would seem to revive and come out but these occasions became less and less frequent, and the last time he was present at a meeting was on the morning of Lord's Day, August 5, 1945.
After that his condition rapidly became worse and on September 6 he was hurriedly removed to hospital for an urgent minor operation. His sufferings, however, soon returned. Miss Ivy Tucker, who had looked after him for many years, was in constant attendance at the hospital and was able to spend a considerable time with him, reading or speaking, as his condition permitted. He was frequently unable to take any nourishment, and on isolated days did not even speak a word.
There were, however, occasions when his utterances clearly indicated the heavenly occupation of his mind for example, one day he was heard to say, "Who is a pardoning God like Thee!"Wonderful! Wonderful!and many times, "Glory, gloryall glory."
After a period of severe suffering... he remarked, "The Lord has told me that He is bearing the pain with me, and that is better than having it removed... I have been made to feel lately, as never before, what a body of humiliation this is, but also I have been contemplating, in contrast, what a body of glory it is that I shall have presently... He is perfecting that which concerneth me." When the first verse of "O bright and blessed hope! When shall it be..." was quoted to him, he was quiet for a few moments, and then was heard to say, "Soon, Lord Jesus."
About the third week of his illness in hospital, individual brothers took to going when he could bear it, to pray with him for a few minutes, but although he seemed fully to appreciate the prayers, he was not really equal to doing more than just thank them for coming. Indeed, at times, he would seem to have lapsed into a state of semi-consciousness. Just prior to this, he had expressed himself as unable to see any visitors but on being encouraged to allow a brother to come in as usual for a word of prayer only, he at once replied, "Oh yes, that is like a drink of the brook on the way."
Four days before he was taken, the last four verses of Isaiah 40 were read to him, and he said, "Read the 53rd", and after that was read, he said, "God's blessed Son."
During the morning of Saturday, October 6, he became unconscious. He fell asleep at 9:20 am on Lord's Day, October 7, Miss Tucker and a hospital sister being with him at the time.
The burial was arranged to take place on the following Thursday, October 11, at 2:00 pm, and, according to his own request, the coffin was of unpolished oak, and bore the following inscription:
Charles Andrew Coates
Fell asleep October 7th, 1945
In his 83rd year
An estimated six to seven hundred brethren were present from all parts of the country.
Henceforth my lips and pen
Shall seek to spread His fame;
My hands and feet shall swiftly move
To glorify His Name.
I seek no earthly place;
My joy is all in Him;
My thirsty soul shall drink no more
From fountains stained with sin.
But in the Lord Himself,
The Lord who died for me,
Despised on earth, enthroned in heaven,
My springs of life shall be.
And when He takes me home
To gaze upon His face,
More loud, more sweet my soul shall sing
The riches of His grace.
* * *
The writings of C. A. Coates can be obtained from:
KINGSTON BIBLE TRUST, Rear of Wembley Avenue, Lancing, Sussex, BN15 9LX, England
| 2010/1/12 9:30||Profile|
| Re: Biography of Coates|
Thank you, my dear Abide, for that excellent short biographical sketch of C A Coates who I believe was truly a man of God. As were many of the great Brethren.
Wasn't Watchman Nee influenced by the Brethren?
| 2010/1/12 9:42|
| Re: None But the Hungry Heart|
Just wondering if anyone here in these Forums has read the book of devotionals called 'None But the Hungry Heart'?
Has any book of devotionals been a part of your personal or family prayer?
| 2010/1/12 17:49|
Phoenix, Arizona USA
| Re: |
Has any book of devotionals been a part of your personal or family prayer?
I just started reading a daily devotional with my family written by Favell Mortimer titled [i]A Devotional Commentary on the Gospels[/i]. It is arranged for family devotionals and so far it has some good nuggets for meditation and prayer.
You can read it online [url=http://www.gracegems.org/17/Mortimer.htm]HERE[/url]
| 2010/1/12 19:05||Profile|
| Re: Favell Mortimer|
Thank you, Ron. That looks like a great devotional. It relates to the late 19th century, and having read the first gem (Jan 1st) I know that it is REALLY GOOD. I wish I could get a printed copy of it!
| 2010/1/12 19:14|