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February

February 1st. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I willfear no evil: for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me.—Psalm xxiii. 4.

JV/IUST not there be light where there is 'shadow? Can you get a shadow without light? If you doubt it, go down into the cellar to-night without a light, and find your shadow if you can. All that death can do to a true believer is to throw a shadow across his path. Shadows never hurt any one. You can walk right through them as you can through fog. There is nothing to fear.

I pity down deep in my heart any man or woman that lives under the bondage of death! If you are under it, may God bring you out today! May you come right out into the liberty of the blessed gospel of the Son of God!

February 2d.

If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.—2 Corinthians v. 17.

A LL the infidels in the world could not con**■ vince me that I have not a different spirit than I had before I became a Christian. "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit," and a man can soon tell whether he is born of the Spirit by the change in his life. The Spirit of Christ is a Spirit of love, joy, peace, humility and meekness, and we can soon find out whether we have been born of that Spirit or not; we are not to be left in uncertainty.

February 3d. The promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.—Acts ii. 39.

TT is not only our privilege to have our names written in heaven, but also those of the children whom God has given us; and our hearts ought to go right out for them. The promise is not only to us, but to our children. Many a father's and many a mother's heart is burdened with anxiety for the salvation of their children. If your own name is there, let your next aim in life be to get your children's there also.

February 4th. From within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, fnlhhness.—Mark vii. 21, 22. TF a man should advertise that he could take a correct photograph of people's hearts, do you believe he would find any customers? There is not a man among us whom you could hire to have his photograph taken, if you could

photograph the real man. We go to have our faces taken, and carefully arrange our toilet, and if the artist flatters us, we say, " Oh, yes, that's a first-rate likeness," and we pass it around among our friends. But let the real man be brought out, the photograph of the heart, and see if we will pass that around among our neighbors! Why, we would not want our own wives to see it! We would be frightened even to look at it ourselves.

February 5th.

{Mr. D. L. Moody's birthday.) He asked life of Thee, and Thou gavest it him, even length of days for ever and ever.—Psalm xxi. 4.

T WAS down in Texas some time ago, and happened to pick up a newspaper, and there they called me "Old Moody." Honestly, I never got such a shock from any paper in my life before! I never had been called old before. I went to my hotel, and looked in the lookingglass. I cannot conceive of getting old. I have a life that is never going to end. Death may change my position but not my condition, not my standing with Jesus Christ. Death is not going to separate us.

Old! I wish you all felt as young as I do here to-night. Why, I am only sixty-two years old! If you meet me ten million years hence, then I will be young. Read that ninety

first Psalm, " With long life will I satisfy him." That doesn't mean seventy years. Would that satisfy you? Did you ever see a man or woman of seventy satisfied? Don't they want to live longer? You know that seventy wouldn't satisfy you. Would eighty? would ninety? would one hundred? If Adam had lived to be a million years old, and then had to die, he wouldn't be satisfied. "With long life will I satisfy him "—life without end! Don't call me old. I am only sixty-two. I have only begun to live.

February 6th. Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and His ways judgment: and those that walk in pride He is able to abase.—Daniel iv. 37.

AIT'HEN you find that a man has got to praising God it is a good sign. Nebuchadnezzar's earlier edict said much about other people's duty toward the God of the Hebrews, but nothing about what the king himself should do. Oh, let us get to personal love, personal praise! That is what is wanted in the church in the present day.

Nebuchadnezzar passes from the stage: this is the last record we have of him. But we may surely hope that his was a " repentance to salvation not to be repented of." If so, we may

well believe that to-day Nebuchadnezzar the king and Daniel the captive are walking the crystal pavement of heaven arm-in-arm together; and, it may be, talking over the old times in Babylon.

February 7th.

Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men.—2 Corinthians iii. 2.

I REMEMBER reading of a blind man who *■ was found sitting at the corner of a street in a great city with a lantern beside him. Some one went up to him and asked what he had the lantern there for, seeing that he was blind, and the light was the same to him as the darkness. The blind man replied:

"I have it so that no one may stumble over me."

Where one man reads the Bible, a hundred read you and me. That is what Paul meant when he said we were to be living epistles of Christ, known and read of all men. I would not give much for all that can be done by sermons, if we do not preach Christ by our lives. If we do not commend the gospel to people by our holy walk and conversation, we shall not win them to Christ.

February 8th. Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not love, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have allfaith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not love, I am nothing.— 1 Corinthians xiii. 1, 2.

A MAN may have wonderful knowledge, may be able to unravel the mysteries of the Bible, and yet be as cold as an icicle. He may glisten like the snow in the sun. Sometimes you have wondered why it was that certain ministers who have had such wonderful magnetism, who have such a marvellous command of language, and who preach with such mental strength, haven't had more conversions. I believe, if the truth was known, you would find no divine love back of their words, no pure love in their sermons.

February 9th. Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in Thee. Trust ye in the Lord for ever : for in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength.—Isaiah xxvi. 3, 4.

A S long as our mind is stayed on our dear selves, we will never have peace. Some people think more of themselves than of all the rest of the world. It is self in the morning, self at noon, and self at night. It is self when they wake up, and self when they go to bed. They are all the time looking at themselves and thinking about themselves, instead of" looking unto Jesus." Faith is an outward look. Faith does not look within; it looks without. It is not what I think, or what I feel, or what I have done, but it is what Jesus Christ is and has done, that is the important thing for us to dwell upon.

February 10th.

And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto Aaron and unto his sons, saying, On this wise ye shall bless the children of Israel, saying unto them: The Lord bless thee and keep thee: the Lord make His face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: the Lord lift up

His countenance upon thee, and give thee peace

Numbers vi. 22.

T THINK these are about as sweet verses as we find in the Old Testament. I marked them years ago in my Bible, and many times I have turned to this chapter and read them. They remind us of the loving words of Jesus to His troubled disciples, " It is I: be not afraid." The Jewish salutation used to be, as a man went into a house, "Peace be upon this house," and as he left the house the host would say, "Go in peace."

February I ith. The secret things belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law.—Deuteronomy xxix. 29.

""THERE are many things which were dark and mysterious to me five years ago, on which I have since had a flood of light; and I expect to be finding out something fresh about God throughout eternity.

I make a point of not discussing -disputed passages of Scripture. An old divine has said that some people, if they want to eat fish, commence by picking the bones. I leave such things till I have light on them. I am not bound to explain what I do not comprehend. "The secret things belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us, and to our children forever "; and these I take, and eat, and feed upon, in order to get spiritual strength.

February 12th. And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.— Acts xvi. 25.

A N old gentleman got up once in a meeting and said he had lived nearly all his life on Grumble street, but not long ago he had moved over on Thanksgiving street. His face showed it. Paul and Silas in jail at Philippi, when they had received stripes on the back and had their feet in the stocks, still sang praises to God. If some of us were in jail, with our feet in the stocks, I don't think we would sing much. We want a cheerful Christianity.

February 13th. Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ. Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost Acts ii. 36-38.

/"^NE thing I have noticed, that some conversions don't amount to anything; that if a man professes to be converted without conviction of sin, he is one of those stony-ground hearers who don't bring forth much fruit. The first little wave of persecution, the first breath of opposition, and the man is back in the world again. Let us pray that God may carry on a deep and thorough work, that men may be convicted of sin so that they cannot rest in unbelief. Pray that this conviction and confession may begin in our own church. I would a great deal rather see a hundred men thoroughly converted, truly born of God, than to see a thousand professed conversions where the Spirit of God has not convicted of sin.

February 14th. For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for our sokes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich.—2 Corinthians viii. 9.

JV/l EN talk about grace, but, as a rule, they know very little about it. Let a business man go to a banker's to borrow a few hundred dollars for sixty or ninety days; if he is well able to pay, the banker will perhaps lend him the money if he can get another responsible man to sign the note with him. They give what they call "three days' grace" after the sixty or ninety days have expired j but they will make the borrower pay interest on the money during these three days, and if he does not return principal and interest at the appointed time, they will sell his goods; they will perhaps turn him out of his house, and take the last piece of furniture in his possession.

That is not grace at all, but that fairly illustrates man's idea of it. Grace not only frees from payment of the interest, but of the principal also. The grace of God frees us from the penalty of our sin without any payment on our part. Christ has paid the debt, and all we have to do is to believe on Him for our salvation.

February 15th. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the spirit of adoption, whereby Ye cry, Abba, Father.—Romans viii. 15.

T WANT to say very emphatically that I have no sympathy with the doctrine of universal brotherhood, and universal fatherhood; I don't believe one word of it. If a man lives in the flesh and serves the flesh, he is a child of the devil. That is pretty strong language, but it is what Christ said. It brought down a hornet's nest on His head, and helped to hasten Him to the cross, but nevertheless it is true. Show me a man that will lie and steal and get drunk and ruin a woman,—do you tell me he is my brother? Not a bit of it. He must be born into the household of faith before he becomes my brother in Christ. He is an alien, he is a stranger to the grace of God, he is an enemy to God, he is not a friend. Before a man can cry, " Abba, Father," he must be born from above, born of the Spirit.

February 16th. / am the resurrection and the life: he that believeth in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. —John Xx. 25.

\17HEN a young man, I was called upon suddenly, in Chicago, to preach a funeral sermon. A good many Chicago business men were to be there, and I said to myself,

"Now, it will be a good chance for me to preach the gospel to those men, and I will get one of Christ's funeral sermons."

I hunted all through the four Gospels trying to find one of Christ's funeral sermons, but I couldn't find any. I found He broke up every funeral He ever attended! He never preached a funeral sermon in the world. Death couldn't exist where He was. When the dead heard His voice they sprang to life.

February 17th. The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?—Jeremiah xvii. 9.

lMOBODY knows what is in the human * heart but Christ. We do not know our own hearts; none of us have any idea how bad they are. Some bitter things have been written against me, but I know a good many more things about myself that are bad than any other man. There is nothing good in the old Adam nature. We have got a heart in rebellion against God by nature, and we do not even love God unless we are born of the Spirit.

This is a truth that men do not at all like, but I have noticed that the medicine that we do not like is often the medicine that will do us good. If we do not think we are as bad as the description, we must just take a closer look at ourselves.

February 18th.

Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.—1 Peter i. 23.

\17E hear nowadays so much about "culTM hire." Culture's all right when you have something to cultivate. If I should plant a watch, I shouldn't get any little watches, would I? Why? Because the seed of life is not there. But let me plant some peas or potatoes, and I will get a crop.

Don't let any man or woman rest short of being born of the Spirit of God. Don't cultivate a dead and corrupt thing, first make sure that you have that divine nature, then cultivate it.

February 19th. Behold, 1 set before you this day a blessing and a curse; a blessing, if ye obey the commandments of the Lord your God, which I command you this day: and a curse, if ye will not obey the commandments of the Lord your God, but turn aside out of the way which I command you this day, to go after other gods, which ye have not known.—Deuteronomy xi. 26-28.

""TAKE the two Sauls. They lived about one thousand years apart. One started out well and ended poorly, and the other started out poorly and ended well.

The first Saul got a kingdom and a crown; he had a lovely family, (no father ever had a better son than Saul had in Jonathan); he had the friendship of Samuel, the best prophet there was on the face of the earth; and yet he lost the friendship of Samuel, lost his crown, his kingdom and his life, all through an act of disobedience.

Now take the Saul of the New Testament. When God called him he was obedient to the heavenly vision, and he was given a heavenly kingdom.

One act of obedience, one act of disobedience. The act of obedience gained all, and the act of disobedience lost everything. I believe the wretchedness and misery and woe in this country to-day comes from disobedience to God. If they won't obey God as a nation, let us begin individually. Let us make up our minds that we will do it, cost us what it will; and we will have peace and joy.

February 20th. He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.—Proverbs xxviii. 9

rTHINK of that! It may shock some of us to think that our prayers are an abomination to God, yet if any are living in known sin, this is what God's Word says about them. If v»* are not willing to turn from sin and obey God's law, we have no right to expect that He will answer our prayers. Unconfessed sin is unforgiven sin, and unforgiven sin is the darkest, foulest thing on this sin-cursed earth. You cannot find a case in the Bible where a man has been honest in dealing with sin, but God has been honest with him and blessed him. The prayer of the humble and the contrite heart is a delight to God. There is no sound that goes up from this sin-cursed earth so sweet to His ear as the prayer of the man who is walking uprightly.

February 21st.

In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto Me, and drink. He that believeth on Me, as the Scripture hath said, out of his belly shallflow rivers of living water.—John vii. 37, 38.

\17HEN a boy upon a farm in New England, we had a well, and I used to have to pump the water from that well upon wash-day, and to water the cattle; and many a time I had to pump and pump and pump until my arm got tired. But they have a better way now. They don't dig down a few feet and brick up the hole and put the pump in, but they go down through the clay and the sand and the rock, on down until they strike what they call a lower stream, and then it becomes an artesian well, which needs no labor, as the water rises spontaneously from the depths beneath.

I think God wants each of His children to be a sort of artesian well; not to keep pumping, but to flow right out. Why, haven't you seen ministers in the pulpit just pumping, pumping, pumping? I have, many a time, and I have had to do it, too. I know how it is. They stand in the pulpit and talk and talk and talk, and the people go to sleep, they can't arouse them. What is the trouble? Why, the living water is not there; they are just pumping when there is no water in the well.

February Iza.

But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said unto htm, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into His side, I will not believe.—John xx. 24, 25.

I OFTEN think that Thomas was the most unhappy man in Jerusalem during the week that followed. It would have been far more reasonable for him to have believed those who saw Jesus, rather than to have doubted their word. But unbelief is the most unreasonable thing in the world.

February 23d. / am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Jesus Christ our Lord.—Romans viii. 38, 39

""THERE can be no true peace, there can be no true hope, there can be no true comfort, where there is uncertainty. I am not fit for God's service, I cannot go out and work for God, if I am in doubt about my own salvation.

February 24th. And they took Lot, Abram's brother's son, who dwelt in Sodom, and his goods, and departed.—Genesis xiv. i2.

COR awhile Lot did make money very fast A in Sodom, and became a very successful man. If you had gone into Sodom a little while before destruction came, you would have found that Lot owned some of the best corner lots in town, and that Mrs. Lot moved in what they called the bonton society or upper ten; and you would have found that she was at the theatre two or three nights in the week. If they had progressive euchre, she could play as well as anybody; and her daughters could dance as well as any other Sodomites. We find Lot

sitting in the gates, he is getting on amazingly well. He may have been one of the principal men in the city; Judge Lot, or the Honorable Mr. Lot of Sodom. They might have elected him Mayor of Sodom. He was getting on amazingly well; wonderfully prosperous.

But by and by there comes a war. If you go into Sodom, you must take Sodom's judgment when it comes; and it is bound to come. The battle turned against those five cities of the plain, and they took Lot and his wife and all that they had.

February 25th.

There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both.—Luke vii. 41, 42.

VERY few people think they are lost. You seldom meet a bankrupt sinner. Most of them think they can pay about seventy-five cents on the dollar; some ninety-nine per cent. —they just come short a little, and they think Ae Almighty will make it up somehow.

Don't let Satan make you think you are so good that you don't need the grace of God. We are a bad lot, all of us, with nothing to pay.

February 26th. Remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how He said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.— Acts xx. 35.

WHAT makes the Dead Sea dead? Be

cause it is all the time receiving, but never giving out anything. Why is it that many Christians are cold? Because they are all the time receiving, never giving out.

My speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.1 Corinthians, ii. 4.

MANY people think that we need new meas

1 ures, that we need new churches, that we need new organs, and that we need new choirs, and all these new things. But what the Church of God needs to-day is the old power that the apostles had: if we have that in our churches, there will be new life. Then we will have new ministers—the same old ministers renewed with power, filled with the Spirit.

I remember when in Chicago many were toiling in the work, and it seemed as though the car of salvation didn't move on, when a minister began to cry out from the very depths of his heart, "Oh, God, put new ministers in every pulpit." The next Monday I heard two or

February 27th.

three men say, "We had a new minister last Sunday—the same old minister, but he had got new power." I firmly believe that is what we want to-day all over the land. We want new ministers in the pulpit and new people in the pews. We want people quickened by the Spirit of God.

February 28th. Strive to enter in at the strait gate:for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.— Luke xiii. 24.

\17HO are we to strive with? Not with the *" gate-keeper. The gate-keeper stands with the gate wide open, and he says, " Come in, come in!" All the striving is with the flesh; it is with this old carnal nature of ours.