The strongest man is he whose enthusiasm is disciplined by self-control, whose devotion to Christ is whole-hearted and well-nigh incapable of increase, but yet is closely regulated by a sanctified reason, and thus made provident of its resources and unalterable in its purposes. It is grounded not on feeling or passion, but on a reciprocal conviction of simplicity of purpose; and, being true in its origin, it is true at every stage of its development. We must rightly understand this method and order which God has set for the conveying of saving grace unto us. )Look to selfT. What, then, are we to understand by "looking to ourselves?" THE ATMOSPHERE OF THIS FRIENDSHIP WAS SINCERITY. And thus we have the point in the several explications of it, wherein it holds good unto us, that he that transgresseth, that is, rejects the doctrine of Christ, he hath not God. It is prescribed. ITS POSSIBLE EFFACEMENT. This is so much the more grievous as it is the less thought of and expected; for these persons which we have now mentioned, they make a full account they have God whatever they have else. They have God indeed in the common relation of a Creator. There is a looking to ourselves that is wrong, which we are to be careful to avoid, and which we are bound to overcome. )The ingratitude of deceiversScientific Illustrations.The Volucellae have a strong resemblance to the humble bee. B. 2 He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.. Love and Hatred for Fellow Believers. Time seemed to stand still. Revile Christ by a word? (2)The tendency and results of Christ's advent. Years never effaced her love and devotion from his heart. We ask — Are not the Incarnation and the Resurrection the two pillars on which the whole fabric rests? )Warning against false teachersT. Listen to what Jesus Christ will one day say to men who have done nothing but study their own interest — "I was hungry, ye gave Me no meat," etc. The waters wear the stones — not only the lashings of the mighty and furious waves of the Atlantic flinging themselves on the rock, but the nearly noiseless drip of a single drop falling on the slab of stone below. We are judged solely with regard to our works; and the measure of our fidelity will be the measure of our "recompense of reward." , said Dr. Duncan, would have stood a bad chance in an examination by John Owen; but he was a famous man to burn. We had better(1) own to ourselves how disastrous would be the entire loss of it. Melvill, B. D.)Having many things to write unto you. So is it with the Christian, who is called so to pass through the waves of this troublesome world. Repentance, for the most part, is utterly unavailing; the author may become altogether a reformed man, being changed from the infidel into the sincere believer, and from the immoral into the righteous; but he may have no power whatsoever of recalling his writings: they have gone forth as upon wings to the farthest ends of the earth. We have thought seriously, felt deeply, prayed earnestly, resolved strenuously, chosen deliberately, wrestled manfully, persisted patiently. Thirdly, add to this the extent of it, and that which goes along with it, for if we lose our work there is somewhat more lost besides that, as is implied afterwards; and that is of yourselves, "it is unprofitable for you" (Hebrews 13:17). This is the return they make for the hospitality they have received. )Error affects conductE. And this the apostle signifies there in that place (Hebrews 13:17). .... Wherewith shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before the high God?" But it is well to look a little more closely at the reasonableness and advantage of maintaining this intermediate position between the two extremes. A tremendous responsibility rests upon us to-day. It will not do for him to furl his sails, to neglect his compass, or to drop his hold upon the helm.I. 10, 11.Loyalty to ChristJ. Secondly, the persons they work for, and that is the church and people of God (Ephesians 4:12). And his heart might be full of those tender emotions which would express themselves in sacred admonitions and directions, which he designed to give to the pious family whom he was shortly to visit.1. And the rather upon this added still to it, that it is irrecoverable, for so it is. First, "That ye love not," etc. The doctrine of or concerning Christ, then, here referred to, is the whole body of truth made known to us by Christ and His apostles concerning Him. Stowell, M. A.It will not do for the sailor, however many dangers he may have passed safely through, or however far he may have advanced upon the voyage, to become unwatchful. His heart, doubtless, was full of what concerned the fruits of his ministry in the Church of Christ; of what he had seen and heard, of the results of his long-continued and laborious exertions for the salvation of men; of his own feelings and prospects in his advanced stage of life, and of his cheering hopes of soon being in a better world, where he would have a sight of Christ. (Essex Congregational Remembrancer. Follow Desiring God on Twitter. (2) Count the cost of a partial loss of it. Trusting in God for the fulfilment of our designs is justifiable only on the supposition that such designs are well-pleasing in His sight.III. namely, of joy and rejoicing. A. The act of printing does but enlarge, so to speak, the sphere of the author's individuality, and cause him to act on a broader surface; but evidently if, in place of printing, he confines himself to speaking, delivering to the comparatively few who are brought within sound of his voice the same sentiments that we suppose scattered by the Press over half a community, why, he will partake of the sins of those few, even as under the other supposition he would of the sins of the whole host of his fellow-men. Message * Name * Email * Tagged under. At first he says, "Look to yourselves"; but he adds, "that we lose not the things which we have wrought." Selfishness — the looking to ourselves, keeping always in view what we think is for our own personal interest or advantage — is one of the surest signs of a worldly and unbelieving mind. To illustrate the first mode, we will take an extreme case, but which cannot be examined without our discovering a principle which may equally be applied in various lesser instances. Why is it men are not as much afraid of the contagion of vice? In the department of Christian service similarly, most men will agree that the best human qualifications for doing it well are not over-eagerness, still less backwardness, but steady earnestness or well-controlled zeal. How much of the literature of the New Testament will remain after the removal of these pillars? Those which are subject to very much hazard, they had need to take very much heed. 3. Now, no attentive reader of the New Testament can fail to see that that on which stress is everywhere laid in this respect is Christ's offering Himself as a ransom and sacrifice for men. Christ is the sole remaining hope of the world. 2. This shows that the fact of an Incarnation is not foreign to our nature; nay, that it is felt by the human consciousness to be essential to religion. The Apostle John does in this case with these believers as some physician would do with his patient; who, when he has done all for him that belongs to him and lies in his power, bids him now to beware and take care of his own health and to look to himself, and accordingly it behoves all Christians so to do. Brodie, M. He finds himself surrounded with the grandeur and the ever-varying beauty of the material creation.1. This having may admit of a threefold interpretation. By "doctrine" here we are not to understand what that term commonly means as used in the present day, viz., a dogmatic or speculative affirmation of truth. The grass and water supply was scarcely sufficient for all, and as a result there were frequent quarrels between their herdmen. Roger S. Greene Children's Sermon by The Rev. We doubt not it was a religious joy. A. Consider the things that you wrought in former days. From Thanksgiving to December 25 seemed more like an eternity than a month. 2 John 8 Ver. Melvill, B. D.)Having many things to write unto you. .... Wherewith shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before the high God?" The germs of religious truth will be perpetually unfolding themselves, expanding into new conceptions of the glory of God and of the spiritual privileges possible to man; and through all the future, one of the rewards of loyalty to Christ is to be that the loyal will be continually advancing in Christian thought, ever more completely knowing as they are known. Lot was a man who believed in looking after himself. By "doctrine" here we are not to understand what that term commonly means as used in the present day, viz., a dogmatic or speculative affirmation of truth. Life is uncertain; with it ends the day of grace. What, then, have we obtained by flight? We may understand it of either. First, a fulness of sufficiency. The fashion is to hold opinions and views that are as colourless as possible, and carefully to refrain from committing oneself to anything; to remember that every question has "so many sides that life is not long enough for men to examine them all," and that therefore a man should not venture to be positive about anything. Inquire into the nature of that joy which he expected in his visit. First, this conveyance of all good to us in the covenant of grace and in the name of Christ, it is the safest and surest dispensation. He that abides not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. They speak of old times. Guard the entrances. (b)In performing all duties.2. To look back upon your high privileges: you have been taught from your earliest days that you ought to be "born again"; you can recollect when God led you to know and see the way of reconciliation for your sin, and to find your peace in the righteousness of Christ your Saviour. These old pictures look at you from their elevated stations on the wall and say, "See that ye lose none of the inheritance which your noble ancestors have gained for you." They are accommodating, because it has no backbone. We begin with the first, viz., the negative, "Whosoever transgresseth and abideth," etc., which is a censure of all such persons as do withdraw from the doctrine of Christ. There is a tendency at times to imagine that such matters are merely a question of temperament; that the vivacious man will be certain to go forward, and the languid man to hang back; and that neither can be held responsible for faults that arise from the peculiarities of their very natures. Follow Desiring God on Instagram. You ask, in a sort of terror, for some specific by which to guard against this partaking in the sins of other men. If the work of the ministry take not there is nothing hereafter to be expected. "Whosoever goeth onward" (at too great a rate, it means, or impelled by a hot fancy that has broken away from every restraint) "hath not God." The warning is against needless progress, a progress that is suicidal and unworthy the name, the impulsiveness and the haste that ignore all the restraints of reason. LOOK TO YOUR CREED, WHETHER IT BE SCRIPTURAL. This view of Christian communion suggests the wisdom and the desirableness of those ordinances and arrangements that are designed to facilitate that communion.3. The warning is against needless progress, a progress that is suicidal and unworthy the name, the impulsiveness and the haste that ignore all the restraints of reason. Look to yourselves, that ye lose not those gracious principles which seemed to be planted in your hearts by the Holy Ghost (Hebrews 2:1; 1 Corinthians 15:1; 2 Corinthians 6:1).2. Man, with his conscious weakness and his deep wants, finds here at length that which meets his wants, satisfies his conviction and gives peace to his conscience, so that he is filled with a joy which is "unspeakable and full of glory."(W.L. "Eighty and six years," said the old man, "have I served Him, and He hath done me no wrong. 2 John 10, 11 Vers. Such an entreaty from the sainted apostle would carry more force than an earnest exhortation or an authoritative command. The power of the social principle; and the value, not only of friendship, but of actual intercourse. Secondly, the argument whereupon the caution is urged, or the matter wherein to be exercised. To plead personal temperament in excuse for the habit of over-eagerness or of backwardness, is to overlook the grace of God. This is a great mystery which we cannot comprehend or explain. "He that is a righteous man shall hold on his way, and he that hath clean hands shall wax stronger and stronger." I believe it is in the latter sense that the phrase is used here. The delicate tints and scents of nature cannot be supplied by the most practised hand in art, so as long to deceive. Secondly, the dignity of it; there is somewhat also in that. And this is love, that we walk after his commandments By observing them as a rule of conversation, in so doing love is shown to God; and such may expect the fresh discoveries of the love of God to, them; (See Gill on 1 John 5:3); this is the commandment, … EXPECT THE REWARD WHICH IS BEFORE YOU. What is very painful in the conduct of the infidels, agnostics, and secularists of the day, is the effort they make to get young men together to their meetings.2. Look to yourselves, that ye lose not those vivid and vigorous impressions of Divine truth, which marked the early part of your Christian career.3. They were his grounds that brought forth so plentifully. We are not only "one body in Christ," but "every one also members one of another.". If there be life there will be spiritual feelings. PROTECT THE GOOD WHICH IS IN YOU, "That ye lose not the things which we wrought." )The ingratitude of deceiversScientific Illustrations.The Volucellae have a strong resemblance to the humble bee. Davies, M. A.1. The second is the affirmative, "But that ye, or we, receive a full reward." Look to yourselves, that ye lose not the spirit of secret prayer, and proper seasons for attending to it. You say, "These are old, valuable heirlooms of the family." It is called a reward in this sense because, though it is the free gift of God, it pleased God to ordain that in this world and in the world to come it should be proportionate to a man's diligence, and to the fruits he brings forth. The germs of religious truth will be perpetually unfolding themselves, expanding into new conceptions of the glory of God and of the spiritual privileges possible to man; and through all the future, one of the rewards of loyalty to Christ is to be that the loyal will be continually advancing in Christian thought, ever more completely knowing as they are known. We are now upon very good terms which we may rest upon. The strongest man is he whose enthusiasm is disciplined by self-control, whose devotion to Christ is whole-hearted and well-nigh incapable of increase, but yet is closely regulated by a sanctified reason, and thus made provident of its resources and unalterable in its purposes. Yet all need to have their recollection revived and refreshed. (1) You have tremendous responsibilities. I believe it is in the latter sense that the phrase is used here. His soul cries out after a Living, a Personal, an Incarnate God. Take the best things of this life and they have an emptiness; they are not sufficient, there is a great deal wanting in them. (2) You are running terrible risk out of Christ. See that ye walk worthy of your high vocation, as becometh sons of God; that ye let your light shine before men; that ye obey Jesus Christ's commandments.2. Those being the faults at either extreme against which the apostle warns us, THE CONCLUSION IS OBVIOUS, THAT THE BEST AND MOST PERFECT CHRISTIAN LIFE IS ONE IN WHICH BOTH ARE AVOIDED, AND THE PATH MIDWAY BETWEEN THE TWO IS TRODDEN. This shows the fondness and vanity of those therefore which will deprive themselves of it; seeing it is a full reward, who would then not be partaker of it, and especially lose it for the want of a little care and heedfulness about it? This is that which belongs to all Christians. 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