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Charles Spurgeon's "Morning & Evening"
Devotional: February 20th
“God looketh on the heart.”
1 Corinthians 10:1-12
1 Corinthians 10:1
Ignorance about Old Testament history is very undesirable, for thereby much of spiritual instruction is lost. The Israelites were intended to be practical lessons to us. They hud all the outward ordinances and privileges of religion, and yet they perished, and we ought to take heed lest we do the same. Were we baptized with an outward baptism at the outset of our religious history? So were they, with the cloud above them and the sea on either side, buried in baptism with their leader.
1 Corinthians 10:3 , 1 Corinthians 10:4
Thus they had the analogy of the Lord’s Supper; they ate manna, and drank from the riven rock; the bread and wine of the Communion are similar types of him whose flesh is meat indeed, and whose blood is drink indeed.
1 Corinthians 10:5
They died, notwithstanding their participation in divine ordinances, and so shall we, unless by faith we avoid their faults.
1 Corinthians 10:12
Our baptism, participation in the Lord’s Supper, and other privileges, may make us think ourselves secure, but we must take heed, for far more is needed.
In the Psalms we find the same lesson set to music.
They were outwardly his people, and had every means used upon them to make them worthy of their calling, but as they never became a spiritual people, their privileges were of no avail, and they died in the wilderness. Let us beware of resting in anything short of saving faith, and a real change of heart. “Ye must be born again.”
Come, sound his praise abroad,
And hymns of glory sing;
Jehovah is the sovereign God,
The universal King.
Come, worship at his throne,
Come, bow before the Lord:
We are his works, and not our own;
He form’d us by his word.
Today attend his voice,
Nor dare provoke his rod;
Come, like the people of his choice,
And own your gracious God.
“Make thy face to shine upon thy servant.”
Exodus 34:1-5 , Exodus 34:28-35
In our present reading we shall see how the Lord reopened his communications with Israel, though their sin had abruptly broken up all the treaty engagements almost before they were ratified.
Here let us learn that although man has broken the law of God, yet the Lord in infinite mercy to his people visits them again, causes their hearts to be hewn and prepared by his prophets and ministers, and then writes the law upon those fleshy tablets. The law in the heart is better than the law on stone.
Moses must go up a second time and sojourn with the. Lord, and the people must thus be tried to see if they can wait upon God in their leader’s absence.
Distance was always the rule of the law. Moses went up to God alone, but Jesus takes all his people with him.
Note, that Moses, like other good men, was up betimes in the morning. Matthew Henry says, “the morning is as good a friend to the graces as it is to the muses.” God loves punctual servants.
He declared the nature and the attributes of Jehovah.
In being miraculously supported for forty days without food, Moses, as the law, is followed by Elijah, the chief of the prophets, and our Lord Jesus, in whom the gospel is revealed.
After such long communion Moses came down enriched with the best treasure, and adorned with the best beauty. What he had seen was unconsciously reflected from him, as it always is from those who have had fellowship with God.
Everybody could see the brightness of Moses face except himself; and the same may be said of the man who communes with God.
In this he was unlike most men, for they are usually far too ready to show their brightness to everybody, coveting admiration. Modesty dwells with true excellence.
Before God we must be all unveiled. All things are open before him.
God’s ministers may learn here their only theme.
Lord, from thy burning throne on high,
Thy law comes forth in majesty;
Its glory shines with beams so bright,
No mortal can sustain the sight.
But through thy Son, th’ incarnate God,
Thy milder radiance shines abroad;
His flesh becomes the Godhead’s veil,
And beams of grace and love prevail.
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