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Free Books » Muller, George » Jehovah Magnified & Other Addresses

Chapter 11 - An Address on 1 Thessalonians 1.5 Jehovah Magnified & Other Addresses by Muller, George

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"Our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake" - 1 Thessatonians 1. 5.

 

Our Gospel. That is, simply, the gospel which we preach. There is but one gospel, the gospel of the grace of God, the glad tidings, that God gave His only begotten Son,-who gave Himself for us, who suffered and was bruised for us, and who died for our sins. This is what we are to believe. The sinner believing in Jesus,-yea, the vilest, the most hardened, the oldest sinner,-will at once obtain the pardon of His sins, the full forgiveness of them. He has not to do any work, but just as he is, he should come; he has only to receive what God has to give in the person of His own dear Son, who, in our room and stead, died for us, unworthy, guilty sinners.

 

This gospel, the apostle says, CAME NOT IN WORD ONLY, BUT IN POWER. Not only as a statement, nor even as a mere clear and scriptural statement, but in spiritual energy, in spiritual power. Such power is to be obtained by a holy and prayerful life, by which, even now, believers may be brought into such a state as that out of them flow rivers of living water.

 

It came further to them IN THE HOLY GHOST; viz., the gospel was, as it were, inclosed all round by the Spirit, and accompanied by His power, though uttered by mortal and sinful lips. Only as the Holy Ghost works will the gospel be effectual. We should therefore, above all, seek by earnest, frequent prayer, the power of the Holy Spirit.

 

This power, in connection with the ministry of the Word, is not only to be sought after by public preachers, or by such as minister to stated congregations, but also by district visitors, tract distributors, teachers in schools, by masters, by parents, by all classes of believers; seeing that this power is the result of a holy walk and a prayerful life. All believers should seek to win souls for Christ. None should be content to go alone to heaven.

 

But if we would work successfully for God, we must have power, and we cannot have this spiritual power without much prayer; we must also be especially careful that we do not allow anything which we know to be hateful to the Lord. Thus shall we be vessels meet for the Master's use; but thus alone have we any right to expect to be used by the Lord.

 

The office of an apostle we never can have, but this spiritual state of heart which the apostle had we may have, yea, ought to have; and just in the degree in which we have it, will the gospel which we preach come in power and in the Holy Ghost. It is not the much we do, the number of visits we have made, or the number of tracts we have distributed; it is not the quantity, but the quality of our service which we should regard. If we have distributed a good many tracts, how much have we distributed them in prayer, and how much have we followed them in prayer?

 

AND IN MUCH ASSURANCE; viz., much full conviction. What an experience is this! a full conviction of the forgiveness of their sins, and of all their sins-hearts brimful of joy; thus showing, by their happy faces, their peace with God, and out of full hearts pouring forth blessed truths! It is true I am a stranger here, but heaven is my home. I am on my way to God. God, for Christ's sake, has pardoned me.

 

Dear Sunday school teachers, day-school teachers, superintendents of schools, district visitors, visitors of the sick, tract circulators, let all those with whom you have to do see that you are happy men and women. Let it never be asked by the children we teach, or those we visit, Does Mr. So-and-so himself believe what he says? Does Mrs. So-and-so herself believe and enjoy the things she speaks of to me ? Therefore, my beloved brethren, do not expect fruit, unless you speak in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance.

 

AS YE KNOW WHAT MANNER OF MEN WE WERE AMONG YOU. There should be no uncertainty about this-no doubt as to whether the one who speaks, who teaches, who visits, is a man of God or not. It is to my shame, if men do not know what manner of person I am. If we want to know what manner of men we ought to be, let us read what Paul says of himself in the second chapter of the First Epistle to the Thessalonians.

 

I have made these few remarks, firstly, in order that all of us who in any way seek to serve the Lord may be encouraged. Do not let us say, this is too much-this is too high an attainment. Verily it is not! We may not expect to be able to perform miracles, nor have the gift of tongues, nor the office of an apostle; but we may confidently look for this spiritual power, and we shall not be disappointed.

 

And I have, secondly, made these remarks because the kind of service which I have been noticing is now so particularly needed. Let us pray that God, in the riches of His grace, would raise up, as pastors and teachers, as evangelists, as district visitors and tract distributors, as teachers of schools, etc., holy men, who shall speak not in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; and who by their manner of life shall commend themselves to the consciences of men.