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- How to Live a Holy Life - 3/22 -
sunlit shore of eternal rest.
Many times we may become wearied and think the toils of the way almost too heavy; but when we remember that it is the way that Jesus trod, then the heavens open to our view, we look forward to the mansion prepared for us, and the toils of the way grow lighter.
See that aged pilgrim journeying down the western slope of life. The sun is nearing the setting. Long and toilsome has been his pilgrimage, but he has walked in the path his Savior trod. For many years his life has been hid with Christ in God. In Him he has lived and moved and had his being. Now he is making his last step on the shore of time; he passes out of our sight through the gates into that land where toils are ended and the sun never sets. But his life was the life of Jesus. He was holy as God is holy; he walked as Jesus walked. This is how to live. This is the true way of life and the only way to life eternal. He who does not live with Christ on earth can not live with him in heaven, and he who does not live as Jesus lived does not live as he should. The life of Christ was the perfect life. Ours is perfect to the degree that we imitate him.
Take my life, O Christ divine, Make it holy, just like thine; Every act and thought and word Be an outflow from my God.
Guide my feet and keep my heart; Let me not from thee depart; Let me breathe thy warming love, That my soul be drawn above.
Draw me, Jesus, closer draw; Thy strong arm around me throw; Draw me to thy pierced side; In thy bosom let me hide.
Teach me all thy will and word, That my life be filled with God; Teach me, Lamb of Calvary, How to live this life for thee.
HOW TO LIVE THE CHRIST-LIFE.
Man can not naturally live the Christ-life. But Christ has promised to come into our hearts and live in us. In order that we may have Christ dwell in our hearts and that we may live his life, there must be a giving up of our self-life. There must be annihilation of self that Christ may live. It is truly wonderful and as glorious as it is wonderful that man can live the life of Christ in this world. But here is the secret: it is man ceasing to live the self-life and Christ living in him.
Imagine a hollow brass figure in the exact image of a man. Suppose you fill this hollow figure with a kind of life which we shall call self-life. This life goes to using the hands and feet, and eyes, ears, tongue, in short, all the members of this brass figure, but using them in the interest of itself. Now you desire to make a change; you want that image to speak, act, and think only for you. You must first put to death the life that is using the figure, cleanse it entirely out, and then get into it yourself. Once in, you can use all the members of that image for yourself. Your body is that image. There was a life in you that used all the members of your body in the interest of self. But there has been a change. You were made a new creature. The life you once had was put to death--was crucified; then Christ stepped into your heart, and now he uses all the members of your body for himself. You still live, yet not you, but Christ lives in you. Once you did things for yourself; now you do them for Christ. Just as you once lived purposely and intentionally for yourself, now you do things purposely and intentionally for Jesus, because it is he that lives, and not you yourself. You remember how once you would plan for yourself. In the evening as you lay upon your bed and again in the morning and throughout the day you would think about what you were going to eat or drink, what you were going to have for clothing, where you were going to live, where you were going to go, and what you were going to do. But now you are changed; you are a new creature. Now it is not you that lives, but Christ lives in you. Now you eat not for yourself but for Jesus. You now go, not where self would lead you, but where that life in you loves to go and would have you go. You do things, not for yourself, but for Jesus.
O Christ, I die, that thou mayst live, That thou mayst live in me; That all I think or speak or do, May be, O Lord, for thee.
May not the least of self remain, But all be put to death. Oh, may I nothing do for self, Nor draw one selfish breath!
To have my Savior live in me, To occupy the whole, To make my heart his royal throne And take complete control--
'Tis all I ask; 'tis all I wish; 'Tis all my heart's desire, Content if but a wayside bush To hold God's holy fire.
Low at thy feet, O Christ, I fall A yielded lump of clay, For thee to mold me as thou wilt, To have thy own sweet way.
THE BIBLE WAY.
If the Bible had not been given us, we should not always know the way that Jesus walked. But he has given us his Word. The way of the Bible is the way of Christ, and is therefore the true path of life. O pilgrim to the heavenly kingdom, the Word of God will be a lamp unto thy feet and a light unto thy way. It will lighten you home. There will never be a day so dark but the beams of light from the blessed Bible will pierce through the darkness and fall with a bright radiance upon your pathway. If sometimes you can not see just where Jesus stepped, take the precious Book of God, and it will be a lamp to show you the way he trod. One wintry morning a father went a long distance through the deep snow to feed his sheep. A few hours later a little boy was sent to call his father home. The child was carefully stepping in the footprints before him, but soon a dark cloud arose and the blinding snow-storm so dimmed his eye that he frequently stepped aside. In the beautiful, clear light of the Bible we can see all the way that Jesus trod. If we will walk according to the Bible, we shall walk as Jesus walked and not show a double track. Make the blessed Word of God your guide if you would walk aright the path of life and be happy.
"And often for your comfort you will read the Guide and Chart: It has wisdom for the mind and sweet solace for the heart; It will serve you as a mentor; it will guide you sure and straight All the time that you will journey, be the ending soon or late."
'The Scriptures are given by inspiration of God and are profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect' 2 Tim. 3:16. If by faith we receive into our hearts the instruction in righteousness as given by the Scriptures, it will make us perfect in this life. O reader, if you would know how to live, study the Bible. It points out the way clearly and plainly. Let its truths in all their power reach to the depth of thy heart. Let thy soul seize upon the Bible and drink its strength and sweetness as the bee sips the sweetness from the flower. As the animal eats the plant and by assimilation converts it into animal life, so eat the Book of God and convert it into human life. It is the food of angels. But rather than its being the Bible converted into human life, it is human life transformed into the purity of the Bible. There are great depths to the Bible. The simplest text contains depths to which we can ever be descending.
They who would live a perfect life must set the life of Christ before them as portrayed by the Holy Scriptures. You can not see much of this perfect life by a passing glance. It is he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues to look that will see the perfect life which it pictures. The artist must look long at the landscape and get it imaged upon his soul before he can produce it upon the canvas. The Bible description of the life of Christ must fill your soul with admiration and with a strong desire to possess it. Your heart must lay hold upon it until that life is focused and printed upon your own soul. It is like the art of photographing. The object must be set before the heart.
The Bible is the light that shines the image of Christ upon the soul. For the pure in heart to develop into higher spiritual life, they must gain such an admiration for the beauty of Christ that they will long to possess him in greater fulness. The pleading of the heart will be, "Lord, let thy beauty be upon us." Their souls will follow hard after his perfections. In no other way will the soul unfold and develop into the higher Christian life. He who has not learned how to grow in grace has not yet learned how to live. To live life in the best possible manner is to be making constant progress. Oh, let us give this world our best life! When we are nearing the end of the way and life's sun is sinking low, if on looking back we can see nothing but a life spent in the service of God, walking in the light of his Word, this will afford us untold satisfaction.
O blessed Word of eternal life, The lamp to guide the way Through this weary world of sin and strife To heaven's perfect day!
THE HEAVENLY WAY.
There is a heaven. There is a place of rest and happiness. I have not gone to heaven, but heaven has come to me; therefore I know there is a heaven. Many who have eaten oranges have never been in a land where oranges grow, but these persons know there must be such a land, because they have tasted its fruit. Likewise, I know there is a heaven because I daily taste its joy.
Not only is there a heaven, but there is a way to heaven. All can go who will. Heaven is a holy place, and the way to heaven is a holy way. A prophet of God said, "An highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall
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