Open as PDF
As we have already observed, it is generally admitted that God's word demands of all men to live holy and sinless lives. But foolish men look at these high commands of God, then at their inward proneness to evil and impotency in that which is good; and also look at the world of wicked forces around them, and they say, " No man can keep the commands of the Lord." But, dear reader, this is altogether unwise. Let us now look at the strongest commands of the Bible, and then place along side of them the corresponding promises of God. And we will see that no command exceeds the proffered grace of God to fulfill it in us. Let us weigh the two in opposite ends of the scales. Read one point at a time in both columns. We will begin with
" Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil. "—Isa. 1: 16. Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, andye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. "—Ezek. 36: 25.
" Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts ye doubleminded. "—Jas. 4:8. " When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning.''—Isa. 4:4.
"Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God." —2 Cor. 7:1. "And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.."—Acts 10:15.
A NEW HEART
" Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? "—Ezek. 18:31. " A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh. "—Ezek. 36:26.
BE RIGHTEOUS AS CHRIST IS RIGHTEOUS
"Thy people also shall be all righteous: they shall inherit the land forever. the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified "—Isa. 60:21
" Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is right eous.—1 John 3:7."
"For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him." 2 Cor. 5:21.
" For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world."—Tit. 2:11-12.
BE YE HOLY
"But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy "—1 Pet. 1:15, 16. "Having therefore, brethren boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus."—Heb. 10:19.
" According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love."—Eph. 1:4. "For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness."—Heb. 12:10.
" Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord."—Heb. 12:14. " For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches. "—Rom. 11:16.
" But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear."—1 Pet. 3:15. "And for their sakes sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. "—John 17:19.
" For this is the will of God, even your sanctification that ye should abstain from fornicator. "—1 Thess. 4:3. " Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate. " —Heb 13 :12.
" But we are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification, of the Spirit and belief of the truth. " —2 Thess. 2:13. " And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it."—1 Thess. 5:23, 24.
" That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost."—Rom. 15:16.
BE YE PERFECT
" Thou shalt be perfect with the Lord thy God. " —Deut. 18:13. " It is God that girdeth me with strength and maketh my way perfect. "—Psa. 18: 32.
"Be ye, therefore, perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect."— Matt. 5:48. " Now the God of peace that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen. "—Heb. 13:20, 21.
LOVE GOD WITH ALL THY HEART
"And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all shine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. " —Deut. 6:5. "And the Lord thy God will circumcise shine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the Lord thy God with all shine heart, and with all thy soul that thou mayest live."—Deut. 30:6.
"Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. "—Prov. 4:23. " My help cometh from the Lord which made heaven and earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: hethat keepeth thee will not slumber. Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. "— Psa. 121: 2 7.
" Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ. "—Jude 21.
" Little children, keep yourselves from idols." 1 John 5:21.
" Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee."—Isa. 26:3.
" And the peace of God, which passeth all under. standing, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. "—Phil. 4:7.
"But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, and keep you from evil. "—2 Thess. 3:3.
" Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to, be revealed in the last time. " —1 Pet. 1:5.
" Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy. To the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen. "— Jude 24:25
"Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently. "—Psa. 119:4. " For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous."—1 John 5:3.
"But this thing commanded I them, saying, obey my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people: and walk ye in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well unto you."—Jer. 7:23.
" We ought to obey God rather than men "—Acts 5:29.
" If ye love me keep my commandments."—John 14:15
"For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."—Matt. 11:30
" Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience."—1 Pet. 1:2.
" And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them."—Ezek. 36:37.
"He that hat my commandments, and keepteth them, he iti is that loveth me."—John 14:21
"Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and , lo, I am with you alway, even unto theend of the world. Amen. "—Matt. 28: 20.
"Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: forthis is the whole duty of man."—Eccl. 12:13
" I will run the way of thy commandments, when thou shalt enlarge my heart. "— Psa. 119:32.
" Our heart is enlarged. " 2 Cor. 6:11.
" Be ye also enlarged. " Verse 13.
WALK EVEN AS HE WALKED
" Walk before me and be thou perfect."—Gen. 17:1. " Righteousness shall go before him; and shall set us in the way of his steps. "— Psa. 85:13.
" For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps. "—1 Pet. 2:21. " The law of God is in his heart; none of his steps shall slide. "—Psa. 37:31.
" He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also to walk, even as he walked."— 1 John 2:6. " And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people."—2 Cor. 6:16.
Several years ago it occurred to our mind to prepare and preach the Word, thus placing in a balance the commands and promises of God. An abridgment of the lesson we then used found its way into the Bible Readings published by Brothers Kilpatrick and Speck, not, however, to their blame. We speak of this that the reader may know we have not stolen the labors and credit of another. This is a thing we detest, likewise doth God.
Now, beloved reader, what can you say to these scriptures? How can you justify yourself in being less than perfect in all the moral attributes of God, since you are commanded thus to be, and every requirement is backed by the promised grace of God to fulfill it in you? Should a mother say, "My child go and wash your dirty face: " were there no water, or any other cleansing element provided, nor attainable, the little one might truthfully say, "Mother I can't." But when the mother places before it a bowl of good soft water, soap, wash rag and towel, and demands of it to wash, all must admit it will be without excuse if still unclean. And just so, there is a fountain open to the house of David, for sin and for uncleanness. Zech. 13:1. And pointing to this, God speaks to all sinners, filthy professors, and unsanctified believers, saying, "Wash you, make you clean." "Cleanse your hands ye sinners, and purify your hearts ye double minded." And yet men are foolish enough to think they have a cloak for their sins and excuse for their filthiness. Yea, they say, God commands us to be holy, perfect and pure, but we can not wash and remain clean in this world. Thus they contradict the word of God and make him a liar, and shall utterly perish in their unbelief and uncleanness. Reader, as  God is true, salvation is perfect, will make you perfect, and keep you blameless in God's sight' to the coming of the Lord. And if you neglect so GREAT SALVATION you will stand before God in your iniquity, speechless and without a cloak to cover your shame.