with a daily devotion
Evening Meditations for December 8
The dust shall return to the earth as it was.—ECCL. 12:7.
It is sown in corruption; it is sown in dishonour; it is sown in weakness; it is sown a natural body.—The first man is of the earth, earthy.
Dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.—One dieth in his full strength, being wholly at ease and quiet. And another dieth in the bitterness of his soul, and never eateth with pleasure. They shall lie down alike in the dust, and the worms shall cover them.
My flesh . . . shall rest in hope.—Though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God.—The Lord Jesus Christ shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.
Lord, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am.—So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.
“Thou, O God, hast prepared of thy goodness for the poor.”
All God’s gifts are prepared gifts laid up in store for wants foreseen. He anticipates our needs; and out of the fulness which he has treasured up in Christ Jesus, he provides of his goodness for the poor. You may trust him for all the necessities that can occur, for he has infallibly foreknown every one of them. He can say of us in all conditions, “I knew that thou wouldst be this and that.” A man goes a journey across the desert, and when he has made a day’s advance, and pitched his tent, he discovers that he wants many comforts and necessaries which he has not brought in his baggage. “Ah!” says he, “I did not foresee this: if I had this journey to go again, I should bring these things with me, so necessary to my comfort.” But God has marked with prescient eye all the requirements of his poor wandering children, and when those needs occur, supplies are ready. It is goodness which he has prepared for the poor in heart, goodness and goodness only. “My grace is sufficient for thee.” “As thy days, so shall thy strength be.”
Reader, is your heart heavy this evening? God knew it would be; the comfort which your heart wants is treasured in the sweet assurance of the text. You are poor and needy, but he has thought upon you, and has the exact blessing which you require in store for you. Plead the promise, believe it and obtain its fulfilment. Do you feel that you never were so consciously vile as you are now? Behold, the crimson fountain is open still, with all its former efficacy, to wash your sin away. Never shall you come into such a position that Christ cannot aid you. No pinch shall ever arrive in your spiritual affairs in which Jesus Christ shall not be equal to the emergency, for your history has all been foreknown and provided for in Jesus.
29. Proverbs of Solomon
He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy. 2When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn. 3Whoso loveth wisdom rejoiceth his father: but he that keepeth company with harlots spendeth his substance. 4The king by judgment establisheth the land: but he that receiveth gifts overthroweth it. 5A man that flattereth his neighbour spreadeth a net for his feet. 6In the transgression of an evil man there is a snare: but the righteous doth sing and rejoice. 7The righteous considereth the cause of the poor: but the wicked regardeth not to know it. 8Scornful men bring a city into a snare: but wise men turn away wrath. 9If a wise man contendeth with a foolish man, whether he rage or laugh, there is no rest. 10The bloodthirsty hate the upright: but the just seek his soul. 11A fool uttereth all his mind: but a wise man keepeth it in till afterwards. 12If a ruler hearken to lies, all his servants are wicked. 13The poor and the deceitful man meet together: the Lord lighteneth both their eyes. 14The king that faithfully judgeth the poor, his throne shall be established for ever. 15The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame. 16When the wicked are multiplied, transgression increaseth: but the righteous shall see their fall. 17Correct thy son, and he shall give thee rest; yea, he shall give delight unto thy soul. 18Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he. 19A servant will not be corrected by words: for though he understand he will not answer. 20Seest thou a man that is hasty in his words? there is more hope of a fool than of him. 21He that delicately bringeth up his servant from a child shall have him become his son at the length. 22An angry man stirreth up strife, and a furious man aboundeth in transgression. 23A man’s pride shall bring him low: but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit. 24Whoso is partner with a thief hateth his own soul: he heareth cursing, and bewrayeth it not. 25The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the Lord shall be safe. 26Many seek the ruler’s favour; but every man’s judgment cometh from the Lord. 27An unjust man is an abomination to the just: and he that is upright in the way is abomination to the wicked.
145I cried with my whole heart; hear me, O Lord: I will keep thy statutes.
146I cried unto thee; save me, and I shall keep thy testimonies.
147I prevented the dawning of the morning, and cried: I hoped in thy word.
148Mine eyes prevent the night watches, that I might meditate in thy word.
149Hear my voice according unto thy lovingkindness: O Lord, quicken me according to thy judgment.
150They draw nigh that follow after mischief: they are far from thy law.
151Thou art near, O Lord; and all thy commandments are truth.
152Concerning thy testimonies, I have known of old that thou hast founded them for ever.
153Consider mine affliction, and deliver me: for I do not forget thy law.
154Plead my cause, and deliver me: quicken me according to thy word.
155Salvation is far from the wicked: for they seek not thy statutes.
156Great are thy tender mercies, O Lord: quicken me according to thy judgments.
157Many are my persecutors and mine enemies; yet do I not decline from thy testimonies.
158I beheld the transgressors, and was grieved; because they kept not thy word.
159Consider how I love thy precepts: quicken me, O Lord, according to thy lovingkindness.
160Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever.