365 days with Newton

19 JULY

Something more

‘Is anything too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.’ Genesis 18:14
SUGGESTED FURTHER READING: Revelation 2:1–7

I know there are some evidently fed and strengthened; they grow in knowledge and in grace. And now and then when I am ready to faint, my heart is a little revived by hearing of a new enquirer. If I could be content with some liberty of speech and with the respect and kindness which my hearers in general show me, I might sit down quiet and be satisfied with my situation. But indeed this does not content me—I want something more. Though I am not opposed and persecuted, yet my heart is often grieved. I see many who, though they hear me patiently, yet hear in vain. I see believers who once bid fair to be pillars in the church and lights in the world, evidently declining from bad to worse, and I am daily trembling lest things which at present are confined to the knowledge of a few should break forth and become public offence and scandal. If conscience suggests to any of you, ‘Now he means me’, I am content you should think I do, though what I am speaking concerns more than one or two or three. My heart bears me witness that the Lord enables me to be in some measure fruitful to you, at least in public. Yet alas, I come short; I ought to follow you to your houses, to stop you in the streets, to break in upon you in those places and at those seasons when you would least choose to see me, and to entreat you with the affection of Christ Jesus [Philippians 1:8, NIV] to consider what you are doing—to ask you, Where is that blessedness you once spoke of? There is something in my temper that makes this an hard, an almost impossible, service. When I would speak, my mouth is stopped. But is anything too hard for the LORD?

FOR MEDITATION: And this word is for the comfort of believers under outward troubles. The promises respect the life that now is, but providences often seem to cross them. Remember Israel, they were hungry and thirsty, and saw nothing but rocks and deserts—but the Lord brought water from the rocks and gave them food out of the clouds. His arm is not shortened. He is still the same.

SERMON SERIES: GENESIS, NO. 37 [4/4], GENESIS 18:14

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