Daily Archives: July 14, 2020

July 14 Staying Young


Even in old age they will still produce fruit.
(Psalms 92:14, TLB)

Listen to these words: “If you have left your dreams behind, if hope is cold, if you no longer look ahead, if your innermost fires are dead—then you are old. But if to God you give your best, and if to life you give the rest, no matter how the years go by, no matter how the birthdays fly—you are not old.”

It’s not the loss of energy or health that makes you old; it’s the loss of vision. Without it you can be old at thirty. With it, you can still be young at ninety.

Last year, almost 70% of the support that was given to God’s work came from retired people. How interesting! They were wise enough to know that you can’t take it with you, but you can send it on ahead. Solomon said, “He who wins souls is wise” (Proverbs 11:30, NIV). Daniel said, “Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness like the stars for ever and ever” (Daniel 12:3, NIV). Just because you’re shut in doesn’t mean you’re shut out. You’re a vital part of every soul that’s won and every life that’s touched when you stand by a man of God or a ministry He has raised up. You’ll shine like the stars! Now there’s a different definition of stardom—a true one! Unless you are cheese or wine, age simply doesn’t matter. David said, “But the godly shall flourish like palm trees” (Psalms 92:12, TLB).


Did you know that a palm tree produces its biggest harvest of fruit in its last years? Rejoice, that’s you He’s talking about![1]


[1] Gass, B. (1998). A Fresh Word For Today : 365 Insights For Daily Living (p. 195). Alachua, FL: Bridge-Logos Publishers.

July 14 Footprints


Isaiah 43:5

Fear not, for I am with you.

While stranded on a deserted island, Daniel DeFoe’s character, Robinson Crusoe, salvaged a Bible from the shipwreck, read it, and was converted. He grew into a devout Christian. His life, though missing human companionship, was peaceful and prayerful.

But one day he found a footprint in the sand and realized he wasn’t alone. Knowing the cannibalism of the local tribes, he grew into a fearful man, looking over his shoulder with every step. He no longer slept peacefully. He altered his habits. He visualized himself being captured and devoured. “That former confidence in God … now vanished, as if He that had fed me by miracle hitherto could not preserve, by His power, the provision which He had made for me by His goodness.”

Crusoe had to go back to his Bible, repent of anxiety, and be strengthened again in his faith. He eventually learned the great lesson of faltering Christians: The things we most fear are likely, in the providence of God, to be most used for our good. Those footprints, in the end, led to his deliverance.

God has planned out our future from eternity past and guaranteed it with His promises. We can trust Him.[1]


[1] Jeremiah, D. (2002). Sanctuary: finding moments of refuge in the presence of God (p. 205). Nashville, TN: Integrity Publishers.

July 14, 2020 Evening Verse Of The Day

The this (zeh) that opens the verse refers to that which is expressed in vv. 1–2: everyone, regardless of merit, will die! The translation of this opening sentence is awkward in English and may actually have the force of the superlative. This view is shared by the Vulgate (pessimum) and Ibn Ezra and is best articulated by Christian Ginsburg, who states: “the preposition bᵊ in bᵊkōl gives to rāʿ the force of the superlative, making it stand forth prominently as evil in the midst (bᵊ) of all other evils; none of all those by which it is surrounded can eclipse it.”

The remainder of the verse reasserts the tragedy that death is the end of everyone in spite of the way they live or conduct themselves in the cult. It adds the moral dimension that human beings are thoroughly sinful while they live. The use of rāʿ here must be moral, thus supporting the moral translation of it in its first occurrence in the verse. The course of one’s life is characterized by evil and madness, and what can a person expect at the end? Death. The abrupt syntax at the end of the verse is intentional and reflects the suddenness of death in the midst of life.[1]

Ver. 3.—This is an evil among all things that are done under the sun. The “evil” is explained in the following words, which speak of the common fate. The Vulgate (followed by Ginsburg and others) takes the first words as equivalent to a superlative: Hoc est pessimum inter omnia, “This is the greatest evil of all that is done under the sun.” But the article would have been used in this case; nor would this accurately express Koheleth’s sentiments. He looks upon death only as one of the evils appertaining to men’s career on earth—one of the phases of that identity of treatment so certain and so inexplicable, which leads to disastrous results (Ch. 8:11). That there is one event unto all. The “one event,” as the end of the verse shows, is death. We have here the old strain repeated which is found in Ch. 2:14–16; 3:19; 5:15; 6:12; “Omnes eodem cogimur” (Horace, ‘Carm.,’ ii. 3. 25). Yea, also the heart of the sons of men is full of evil. In consequence of this indiscriminating destiny men sin recklessly, are encouraged in their wickedness. Madness is in their heart while they live. The “madness” is conduct opposed to the dictates of wisdom and reason, as Ch. 1:17; 2:2, 12. All their life long men follow their own lusts and passions, and care little for God’s will and law, or their own best interests. This is well called “want of reason” (περιφέρεια, Septuagint). And after that they go to the dead. The verb is omitted in the Hebrew, being implied by the preposition אֶל, “to;” the omission is very forcible. Delitzsch, Wright, and others render, “after him,” i.e. after man’s life is ended, which seems rather to say, “after they die, they die.” The idea, however, appears to be, both good and evil go to the same place, pass away into nothingness, are known no more in this world. Here at present Koheleth leaves the question of the future life, having already intimated his belief in Ch. 3 and 8:11, etc.[2]

3. Death is not a ‘natural’ phenomenon to the Preacher, but an invincible evil. Also linked with evil is madness, connected elsewhere with glib frivolity (2:2), corruption in society (7:7), folly (10:12f.), self-justifying disobedience (1 Sam. 13:13) and inclinations to violence (1 Sam. 26:21) or pride (2 Sam. 24:10); its usage suggests, therefore, a moral wildness that is impetuous and irrational. The problem of our fallen nature (cf. 7:29) is universal, for evil is ascribed to the sons of men in general. It characterizes the whole inner nature of man (the heart), irremediable (life-long, while they live), dominant (we are full of it). The grimmest aspect (the ‘sting’, 1 Cor. 15:56) of death is found here, for with such a heart are we brought ‘to judgment … to his eternal home … to God’ (11:9; 12:5, 7).[3]

Ver. 3. The heart of the sons of men is full of evil.Scriptural statement of the doctrines of human corruption, and of the renewal of the heart to holiness:—

  1. Man’s natural corruption.
  2. One prevailing misconception on the subject of human corruption respects the seat of the disorder. What is the daily language of numbers? “Our lives, it is true, are not exempt from blame. We are guilty of many indiscretions. But our heart is good.” In opposition to this language, the text asserts that the origin of all the evil is within. “The heart of the sons of men is full of evil.” Not the streams alone are filthy and defiled; but the fountain is polluted (Gen. 8:21; Jer. 7:24; 17:9; James 4:1; Matt. 12:34; Matt. 15:19).
  3. Another ground of misconception on the subject of human corruption respects the degree and extent of the disorder. The text says that this corruption is not only radical but total. Generosity, gratitude, fidelity, and the exercise of many other pleasing qualities between man and man; the spontaneous applause of virtue; the decided condemnation of immorality may all exist, without any tendency in man to what is truly good (Isa. 1:5–6; Rom. 7:18; 8:7; Gen. 6:5).
  4. The declaration in the text is also absolute. No exception is stated or implied on account of any difference of outward dispensation under which mankind may be placed. The Gospel uniformly proceeds on the supposition that man is born in sin; that his corruption is not accidental, but innate; not acquired, but hereditary. “That which is born of the flesh is flesh.”
  5. The renewal of the heart to holiness. If, as the Scriptures teach, “without holiness no man shall see the Lord,” then every text which points out the nature and extent of human corruption, points out by implication the nature and extent of that moral change which man must undergo.
  6. Let us thankfully receive the information vouchsafed.
  7. Let us also profitably use the information vouchsafed. While the text sets before us the picture of mankind in general, let us remember that it sets before us our picture in particular. Let us seek to acquire a deep, an experimental conviction of the truth. Let our experience of the inveteracy of the malady lead us earnestly to seek for help from Him who alone can heal our disordered souls. (E. Cooper.)

The unconverted world:—

  1. Their guilt. “The heart—full of evil” (Mark 7:21). It applies to all. The most peaceable man alive has often probably committed murder in his heart. The man of purity and chastity may often, in the heart, have been guilty of adultery. Passions, vile and loathsome as the pit from which they spring, only wait their opportunity. Is the man provoked? He is enraged. Is he admired? He is proud and puffed up. Does God afflict him? He is rebellious. Does God cross him? He is discontented and impatient.
  2. Their madness.
  3. It is a well-known symptom of natural madness that the poor creature who is thus afflicted is apt to entertain most extravagant notions of his own greatness and importance. Whilst the chains are on his hands, whilst he is confined within the narrow limits of his gloomy cell, he often struts about, and thinks himself a king. Is this acknowledged to be madness? and is there none, then, in the conduct of those men who, being spiritually “wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked,” are saying of themselves, “I am rich and increased with goods, and I have need of nothing”?
  4. Men who are mad, in the ordinary sense of the expression, are, for the most part, utterly insensible of danger, and incapable of fleeing from it. They walk on unconcerned, where men possessed of reason and of foresight would be shifting for their safety. Are those men, then, to be set down for sober who show an equal unconcern when the danger is eternal?
  5. But mark another painful symptom of the man who labours under a natural derangement, he knows not his best friend. Those whom, were he in his senses, he would hasten to embrace, he looks on with a cold, unfeeling eye. Nay, perhaps he turns away from them, he counts them enemies. It is also the worst symptom of that spiritual derangement with which the men of this world are afflicted. They also know not their best Friend. They “turn away from Him who speaketh to them from heaven.”

III. Their miserable end. “After that, they go to the dead.” After what? After all the evil and the madness of their earthly course—after having wasted all their years in worldliness and folly—then, “they go to the dead.” Their souls are gathered to the place where all who lived and died like them are gone before. And what place? Can we doubt that hell is meant? Where else do they go “who forget God”? What other wages hath sin, the worldly man’s master, to bestow upon its servants? (A. Robertson, M.A.)

Madness is in their heart while they live.—Moral madness:—

There is a worse madness than mental. Many men intellectually sane are moral maniacs. Wherein does the madness of the unregenerate appear?

  1. In practically ignoring the greatest Being.
  2. In ignoring the greatest interests.

III. In ignoring the greatest dignities. The dignity of a pure character, moral conquests, and self-sacrificing deeds. These they never recognize. (Homilist.)

Moral insanity:—

This affirmation is not made of one or two men, nor of some men merely; but of “the sons of men,” as if of them all.

  1. The insanity spoken of in the text is moral, that of the heart. By the heart here is meant the will—the voluntary power.
  2. Who are the morally insane? Those who, not being intellectually insane, yet act as if they were. The conduct of impenitent men is the perfection of irrationality. You see this in the ends to which they devote themselves, and in the means which they employ to secure them. An end madly chosen—sought by means madly devised; this is the life-history of the masses who reject God.
  3. This moral insanity is a state of unmingled wickedness.

(1) It is voluntary—not from the loss but from the abuse of reason.

(2) It is often deliberate.

(3) It is a total rejection of both God’s law and Gospel. The law he will not obey; the Gospel of pardon he will not accept. He seems determined to brave the Omnipotence of Jehovah. Is he not mad upon his idols? Is it saying too much when the Bible affirms—“Madness is in their heart while they live”? Remarks:—

  1. Sinners strangely accuse saints of being mad and crazy. Yet those very sinners admit the Bible to be true, and admit those things which Christians believe as true to be really so.
  2. If intellectual insanity be a shocking fact, how much more so is moral? Suppose the case of a Webster. His brain becomes softened; he is an idiot! There is not a man in all the land but would feel solemn. What! Daniel Webster—that great man, an idiot! How have the mighty fallen! What a horrible sight! But how much more horrible to see him become a moral idiot—to see a selfish heart run riot with the clear decisions of his gigantic intellect—to see his moral principles fading away before the demands of selfish ambition—to see such a man become a drunkard, a debauchee, a loafer. Intellectual idiocy is not to be named in the comparison!
  3. Although some sinners may be externally fair, and may seem to be amiable in temper and character, yet every real sinner is actually insane. Eternity so vast, and its issues so dreadful, yet this sinner drives furiously to hell as if he were on the high-road to heaven! And all this only because he is infatuated with the pleasures of sin for a season. (C. G. Finney, D.D.)[4]

3. This is an evil among all things, &c. Not only “there is one event unto all,” but “also the heart of the sons of men” makes this fact a reason for ‘madly’ persisting in evil “while they live, and after that (they go) to the dead.” Sin is “madness.” madness (is) in their heart—mad thoughts about God’s government, because of the adversity of the godly, tempt them to take wrong courses to help themselves (Mal. 3:13, 14). the dead—(Prov. 2:18; 9:18.)[5]

[1] Longman, T. (1998). The Book of Ecclesiastes (p. 227). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

[2] Spence-Jones, H. D. M. (Ed.). (1909). Ecclesiastes (p. 225). London; New York: Funk & Wagnalls Company.

[3] Eaton, M. A. (1983). Ecclesiastes: An introduction and commentary (Vol. 18, p. 143). Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.

[4] Exell, J. S. (n.d.). Ecclesiastes & The Song of Solomon (Vol. 1, pp. 215–217). New York; Chicago; Toronto; London; Edinburgh: Fleming H. Revell Company.

[5] Fausset, A. R. (n.d.). A Commentary, Critical, Experimental, and Practical, on the Old and New Testaments: Job–Isaiah (Vol. III, p. 535). London; Glasgow: William Collins, Sons, & Company, Limited.

July—14 The Poor Man’s Evening Portion


For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the Lord’s death till he come.—1 Cor. 11:26.

An evening or two since, my mind was led out to the contemplation of the supper of the Lord, as a heart-affecting ordinance, to make the Lord’s table a Bochim. I hope, my soul, that in this view thou didst find it profitable. Here is another proposed to thy meditation, which, under grace, will prove equally so, in which it comes home to thy affections as a subject of holy joy. Look at it in this light, and remark what the apostle saith upon it: The Lord’s death, which is thy life, is set forth by every renewed celebration. And what a delightful thought is that. As the body needs its constant regular meals, so doth the soul. And as Jesus is the whole of life, and strength, and happiness to his people, as oft as we receive the holy supper, we testify to the world of men and angels, that he is all this; and we glory in setting him forth as such at his table. And what a blessed addition is that little phrase at the end of this verse, till he come: yea, that when he comes he may find his people at his table, and in their death celebrating his. Oh! the blessedness of being so found! Surely every lover of Jesus would desire to be found there, when the Master comes, and calleth personally for each, to take him home: to be, in one and the same moment, in the valley of vision, and the valley of the shadow of death! My soul! from henceforth, among the other glories of the ordinance, do not forget this. The oftener it is attended, the more delightful it will be. For the service keeps the remembrance of Jesus alive in the soul, until he comes to take the soul home to the everlasting enjoyment of himself in glory. And as there all his redeemed, who feast their souls with the view of his person, unceasingly behold some new glories in him, and, after millions of ages, will find him still increasingly lovely, and increasingly precious, so here below, the more we see him, and know him, and enjoy him by faith, the more we shall long to see him, and know him, and enjoy him by sight; and the glories of his person, and the wonders of his blood and righteousness, will be unfolding more and more to our ravished souls. And while every other object lessens in its value by time and use, and all created excellencies, like the planet under which they are found, have their growing and their waning seasons, Jesus is the same, “yesterday, and to-day, and for ever.” Yea, though in reality always the same, yet from the increasing manifestations of love and glory which he makes of himself to us, as our capacities are capable of bearing, he will be in our view more and more blessed, from day to day, from one ordinance to another, and through all the unknown periods of eternity! Oh! the blessedness of setting forth Jesus, “in breaking of bread, and in prayer!”[1]


[1] Hawker, R. (1845). The Poor Man’s Evening Portion (A New Edition, pp. 212–213). Philadelphia: Thomas Wardle.

07/14/2020 — Wretched


•Prophetic dreams from a non-prophet?
•Do we need dreams of the future?
•President Kanye wants to get past racism conversations. Should we?
•The Supreme Court upholds religious liberty for now
•California outlaws singing in church
•Jen Hatmaker reveals why she gave up on biblical sexuality
•LGBT community upset that someone else is using the Rainbow
•The UK reports record high abortions
•Virginia is clamping down on religious freedom

Download Now (right click and save)

via 07/14/2020 — Wretched

July 14th The D. L. Moody Year Book


The love of Christ constraineth us.—2 Corinthians 5:14.

I AM getting sick and tired of hearing the word duty, duty. You hear so many talk about it being their duty to do this and do that. My experience is that such Christians have very little success. Is there not a much higher platform than that of mere duty? Can we not engage in the service of Christ because we love Him? When that is the constraining power it is so easy to work.

It is not hard for a mother to watch over a sick child. She does not look upon it as any hardship. You never hear Paul talking about what a hard time he had in his Master’s service. He was constrained by love to Christ, and by the love of Christ to him. He counted it a joy to labor, and even to suffer, for his blessed Master.[1]


[1] Moody, D. L. (1900). The D. L. Moody Year Book: A Living Daily Message from the Words of D. L. Moody. (E. M. Fitt, Ed.) (pp. 118–119). East Northfield, MA: The Bookstore.

Is It OK for Christians to Push Back Against Authoritarian Governments and Other Wickedness? — Christian Research Network

Notice that Peter says, “every human institution,” not “unbelievers at every level.” Unbelievers at every level do not have “authority” to punish evil doers or to rule over us. The United States government is a “human institution.” The Constitution is our national “Caesar.” Based on the Constitution, we can “petition the government for a redress of grievances” (First Amendment) in terms of religion, speech, press, and assembly.”

(Gary De Marr – The American Vision) The Left is always pushing back against government policies they do not like….

There’s a right way and a wrong way to do this. Burning, looting, and killing are not the right ways. Our constitutional system permits pushback. The Constitution is a pushback document. In biblical and constitutional terms, we do not have to submit to the political status quo. We can change it. We are not commanded to remain silent or passive. When we see evil, we have a right and duty to push back in numerous ways without violating any biblical or constitutional directives.

What about cultural pushback like we are seeing every day in the United States? Should Christians remain silent and do nothing and just surrender to unbelievers at every level of society? Absolutely not.

Last year I saw an article posted on Facebook with the title “We Must Surrender.” It was written by Carlos Chung, a lawyer, who serves as an elder at Grace Community Church. The article is badly argued and dangerous. Here’s how it begins: View article →

via Is It OK for Christians to Push Back Against Authoritarian Governments and Other Wickedness? — Christian Research Network

Understanding What Is Happening in America: A Christian Response — Christian Research Network

“It has long been maintained by Marxist theorists that for socialism to truly work it must be implemented globally, thus achieving the highest stage of socialism: communism. Indeed, this was Marx’s own contention. There can be no free, capitalistic outliers, especially if they are successful in the manner that America surely is. I mean, how will you ever convince the impoverished masses that they live in a workers’ paradise if they can look over the fence and see that their neighbor has a pool, a shiny SUV, and a wife with all of her teeth? To put it in Hegelian terms, there can be no “antithesis,” and America is a swaggering anthesis.”

(Larry Alan Taunton)  There’s an evil logic behind the riots, flag burning, and statue-toppling, and it’s not just America that’s under attack—it’s the Christian faith that’s under assault.

Last week I gave a keynote address at a gathering of conservative Christian Americans in a Birmingham, Alabama hotel. Although social distancing regulations dictated the grand ballroom’s capacity be greatly reduced, it was a sold-out crowd.

The atmosphere was electric. No doubt that was because many were breaking quarantine for the first time. But I attribute the atmosphere chiefly to the fact that many Americans of this ideological stripe are on edge. They are worried that the America they love is committing suicide, and they are looking for answers and direction.

I gave my address the same innocuous title I have given this article. That presentation was motivated by the fact that I see so many Christians and other conservatives who are confused about what is happening in the culture, and quite rightly. There is so much to be confused about.

Part of the reason I think so many are confused is because, on the surface, there appears to be no logic to what is happening. Have you found yourself wondering, What is the goal of these protests? What do the protesters want? 

Is it about justice for George Floyd?

Is it about ending police brutality?

Is it about ending racism?

Is it about equality?

Nope.   View article →

via Understanding What Is Happening in America: A Christian Response — Christian Research Network

‘CONSTANT BULLYING’: Writer/Editor Quits New York Times, Rips Rag: If You ‘Speak Your Mind … You’ll Be Hung Out To Dry’ — The Gateway Pundit

Bari Weiss, a staff editor and writer in The New York Times’ opinion section, resigned on Tuesday — then scorched the liberal “paper of record” and its condoning of “constant bullying by colleagues who disagree with my views” and an environment where she said “self-censorship has become the norm.”

Weiss put out an open letter addressed to New York Times publisher A.G. Sulzberger, opening with the fact that after President Trump was elected in 2016, the paper hired her in an effort to understand the perspective of the 60 million-plus Americans who voted for him.

The letter was fierce.

[T]he lessons that ought to have followed the election —- lessons about the importance of understanding other Americans, the necessity of resisting tribalism, and the centrality of the free exchange of ideas to a democratic society —- have not been learned. Instead, a new consensus has emerged in the press, but perhaps especially at this paper: that truth isn’t a process of collective discovery, but an orthodoxy already known to an enlightened few whose job is to inform everyone else.

Twitter is not on the masthead of The New York Times. But Twitter has become its ultimate editor. As the ethics and mores of that platform have become those of the paper, the paper itself has increasingly become a kind of performance space. Stories are chosen and told in a way to satisfy the narrowest of audiences, rather than to allow a curious public to read about the world and then draw their own conclusions. I was always taught that journalists were charged with writing the first rough draft of history. Now, history itself is one more ephemeral thing molded to fit the needs of a predetermined narrative.

Weiss said she has taken endless abuse for her views, writing, “ … some coworkers insist I need to be rooted out if this company is to be a truly ‘inclusive’ one, while others post ax emojis next to my name. Still other New York Times employees publicly smear me as a liar and a bigot on Twitter with no fear that harassing me will be met with appropriate action. They never are.”

To the publisher, she said:  “I do not understand how you have allowed this kind of behavior to go on inside your company in full view of the paper’s entire staff and the public. And I certainly can’t square how you and other Times leaders have stood by while simultaneously praising me in private for my courage. Showing up for work as a centrist at an American newspaper should not require bravery.”

“The paper of record is, more and more, the record of those living in a distant galaxy, one whose concerns are profoundly removed from the lives of most people. This is a galaxy in which, to choose just a few recent examples, the Soviet space program is lauded for its ‘diversity’; the doxxing of teenagers in the name of justice is condoned; and the worst caste systems in human history includes the United States alongside Nazi Germany.”

A Times spokeswoman sent Vice a statement from Kathleen Kingsbury, acting editorial page editor, which said:

“We appreciate the many contributions that Bari made to Times Opinion. I’m personally committed to ensuring that The Times continues to publish voices, experiences and viewpoints from across the political spectrum in the Opinion report. We see every day how impactful and important that approach is, especially through the outsized influence The Times’s opinion journalism has on the national conversation.”

Here’s Weiss’s full letter:

Dear A.G.,

It is with sadness that I write to tell you that I am resigning from The New York Times.

I joined the paper with gratitude and optimism three years ago. I was hired with the goal of bringing in voices that would not otherwise appear in your pages: first-time writers, centrists, conservatives and others who would not naturally think of The Times as their home. The reason for this effort was clear: The paper’s failure to anticipate the outcome of the 2016 election meant that it didn’t have a firm grasp of the country it covers. Dean Baquet and others have admitted as much on various occasions. The priority in Opinion was to help redress that critical shortcoming.

I was honored to be part of that effort, led by James Bennet. I am proud of my work as a writer and as an editor. Among those I helped bring to our pages: the Venezuelan dissident Wuilly Arteaga; the Iranian chess champion Dorsa Derakhshani; and the Hong Kong Christian democrat Derek Lam. Also: Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Masih Alinejad, Zaina Arafat, Elna Baker, Rachael Denhollander, Matti Friedman, Nick Gillespie, Heather Heying, Randall Kennedy, Julius Krein, Monica Lewinsky, Glenn Loury, Jesse Singal, Ali Soufan, Chloe Valdary, Thomas Chatterton Williams, Wesley Yang, and many others.

But the lessons that ought to have followed the election—lessons about the importance of understanding other Americans, the necessity of resisting tribalism, and the centrality of the free exchange of ideas to a democratic society—have not been learned. Instead, a new consensus has emerged in the press, but perhaps especially at this paper: that truth isn’t a process of collective discovery, but an orthodoxy already known to an enlightened few whose job is to inform everyone else.

Twitter is not on the masthead of The New York Times. But Twitter has become its ultimate editor. As the ethics and mores of that platform have become those of the paper, the paper itself has increasingly become a kind of performance space. Stories are chosen and told in a way to satisfy the narrowest of audiences, rather than to allow a curious public to read about the world and then draw their own conclusions.I was always taught that journalists were charged with writing the first rough draft of history. Now, history itself is one more ephemeral thing molded to fit the needs of a predetermined narrative.

My own forays into Wrongthink have made me the subject of constant bullying by colleagues who disagree with my views. They have called me a Nazi and a racist; I have learned to brush off comments about how I’m “writing about the Jews again.” Several colleagues perceived to be friendly with me were badgered by coworkers. My work and my character are openly demeaned on company-wide Slack channels where masthead editors regularly weigh in. There, some coworkers insist I need to be rooted out if this company is to be a truly “inclusive” one, while others post ax emojis next to my name. Still other New York Times employees publicly smear me as a liar and a bigot on Twitter with no fear that harassing me will be met with appropriate action. They never are.

There are terms for all of this: unlawful discrimination, hostile work environment, and constructive discharge. I’m no legal expert. But I know that this is wrong.

I do not understand how you have allowed this kind of behavior to go on inside your company in full view of the paper’s entire staff and the public. And I certainly can’t square how you and other Times leaders have stood by while simultaneously praising me in private for my courage. Showing up for work as a centrist at an American newspaper should not require bravery.

Part of me wishes I could say that my experience was unique. But the truth is that intellectual curiosity—let alone risk-taking—is now a liability at The Times. Why edit something challenging to our readers, or write something bold only to go through the numbing process of making it ideologically kosher, when we can assure ourselves of job security (and clicks) by publishing our 4000th op-ed arguing that Donald Trump is a unique danger to the country and the world? And so self-censorship has become the norm.

What rules that remain at The Times are applied with extreme selectivity. If a person’s ideology is in keeping with the new orthodoxy, they and their work remain unscrutinized. Everyone else lives in fear of the digital thunderdome. Online venom is excused so long as it is directed at the proper targets.

Op-eds that would have easily been published just two years ago would now get an editor or a writer in serious trouble, if not fired. If a piece is perceived as likely to inspire backlash internally or on social media, the editor or writer avoids pitching it. If she feels strongly enough to suggest it, she is quickly steered to safer ground. And if, every now and then, she succeeds in getting a piece published that does not explicitly promote progressive causes, it happens only after every line is carefully massaged, negotiated and caveated.

It took the paper two days and two jobs to say that the Tom Cotton op-ed “fell short of our standards.” We attached an editor’s note on a travel story about Jaffa shortly after it was published because it “failed to touch on important aspects of Jaffa’s makeup and its history.” But there is still none appended to Cheryl Strayed’s fawning interview with the writer Alice Walker, a proud anti-Semite who believes in lizard Illuminati.

The paper of record is, more and more, the record of those living in a distant galaxy, one whose concerns are profoundly removed from the lives of most people. This is a galaxy in which, to choose just a few recent examples, the Soviet space program is lauded for its “diversity”; the doxxing of teenagers in the name of justice is condoned; and the worst caste systems in human history includes the United States alongside Nazi Germany.

Even now, I am confident that most people at The Times do not hold these views. Yet they are cowed by those who do. Why? Perhaps because they believe the ultimate goal is righteous. Perhaps because they believe that they will be granted protection if they nod along as the coin of our realm—language—is degraded in service to an ever-shifting laundry list of right causes. Perhaps because there are millions of unemployed people in this country and they feel lucky to have a job in a contracting industry.

Or perhaps it is because they know that, nowadays, standing up for principle at the paper does not win plaudits. It puts a target on your back. Too wise to post on Slack, they write to me privately about the “new McCarthyism” that has taken root at the paper of record.

All this bodes ill, especially for independent-minded young writers and editors paying close attention to what they’ll have to do to advance in their careers. Rule One: Speak your mind at your own peril. Rule Two: Never risk commissioning a story that goes against the narrative. Rule Three: Never believe an editor or publisher who urges you to go against the grain. Eventually, the publisher will cave to the mob, the editor will get fired or reassigned, and you’ll be hung out to dry.

For these young writers and editors, there is one consolation. As places like The Times and other once-great journalistic institutions betray their standards and lose sight of their principles, Americans still hunger for news that is accurate, opinions that are vital, and debate that is sincere. I hear from these people every day. “An independent press is not a liberal ideal or a progressive ideal or a democratic ideal. It’s an American ideal,” you said a few years ago. I couldn’t agree more. America is a great country that deserves a great newspaper.

None of this means that some of the most talented journalists in the world don’t still labor for this newspaper. They do, which is what makes the illiberal environment especially heartbreaking. I will be, as ever, a dedicated reader of their work. But I can no longer do the work that you brought me here to do—the work that Adolph Ochs described in that famous 1896 statement: “to make of the columns of The New York Times a forum for the consideration of all questions of public importance, and to that end to invite intelligent discussion from all shades of opinion.”

Ochs’s idea is one of the best I’ve encountered. And I’ve always comforted myself with the notion that the best ideas win out. But ideas cannot win on their own. They need a voice. They need a hearing. Above all, they must be backed by people willing to live by them.



via ‘CONSTANT BULLYING’: Writer/Editor Quits New York Times, Rips Rag: If You ‘Speak Your Mind … You’ll Be Hung Out To Dry’ — The Gateway Pundit

July 14, 2020 Truth2Freedom Briefing Report (US•World•Christian)

Mid-Day Snapshot · July 14, 2020


“Neither the wisest constitution nor the wisest laws will secure the liberty and happiness of a people whose manners are universally corrupt.” —Samuel Adams (1749)

Officers Down

When leftist agitators demonize our cops, they reap a deadly whirlwind.

Rebuking Beijing Over the South China Sea

State Dept. officially condemns the ChiComs’ illegal attempts to expand control.

Obamagate: Clemency for All Involved?

Newly released documents regarding Michael Flynn also shed light on Roger Stone.

Pinocchi-Joe’s Trouble With Truth

Biden’s manifold problems run far deeper than his own marked cognitive decline.

De Blasio’s Socialism Is Wrecking New York City

The Big Apple’s mayor has deep roots in Marxism and his leadership reflects it.

Leftmedia Nazi ‘Fact-Checking’ Fail

USA Today backs bogus claim that Team Trump’s eagle logo mimics the Nazi one.

Video: U.S. Must Honor Indian Treaty, Says SCOTUS

Bill Whittle and Scott Ott discuss the fallout of a ruling involving an Oklahoma tribe.

Video: Minimum Wage Cost Me My Job

Simone Barron, a lifelong restaurant worker, recounts how “helping” her impacted her.


Cancellation Nation: The Building Backlash
New York Is Not a COVID-19 Model
Confronting Communist China

Roger Stone’s ‘Cornerstone’
Will the Left Kill America’s Energy Dominance?
For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.

Tuesday News Executive Summary

Historic budget deficit, federal execution, crime and victims mocked, and more.

Tuesday Short Cuts

Notable quotables from the WSJ, Karen Attiah, AOC, Hillary Clinton, and more.


For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.


For more of today’s cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.

“The Patriot Post” (https://patriotpost.us)

Mysterious Iceland Earthquake Swarm Hits Over 13,000 Quakes in 3 Weeks – That’s the Biggest Seismic Unrest in More than 40 Years Showing the Forces That Split the Island in Two
An ongoing earthquake swarm in Iceland has now reached over 13,000 quakes since it began on June 19. This is the biggest swarm to hit the Tjörnes Fracture zone in the north of the country in almost half a century, and experts are unsure what is causing it.

White House releases list of Dr. Fauci’s ‘mistakes’
Fauci “has a good bedside manner with the public, but he has been wrong about everything I have ever interacted with him on.” “Now Fauci is saying that a falling mortality rate doesn’t matter when it is the single most important statistic to help guide the pace of our economic reopening,” Navarro said. “So when you ask me if I listen to Dr. Fauci’s advice, my answer is only with caution.”

Sweden transfers funds to an anti-Israeli organization
Sweden has recently transferred 1.8 million krona (nearly $200,00) to a Palestinian Swedish organization acting against Israel under the guise of humanitarian aid. … the Swedish government agency SIDA transferred the funds to the Palestine Solidarity Association of Sweden – an organization that openly supports the BDS movement that calls to boycott and impose sanctions on Israel due to the conflict with the Palestinians.

Israeli watchdog reveals 28 Hezbollah missile sites in Beirut civil centers
Report uncovers sites used for production, storage, and launches of medium-range ballistic missiles; Hezbollah reportedly holds hundreds of missiles with range of up to 300 km (185 miles)

Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Christian Student’s Case Against Restrictive Campus Speech Policy
The Supreme Court agreed to review a First Amendment lawsuit in which a Georgia college belatedly expanded free speech on campus after a Christian student ran afoul of its constitutionally suspect campus “speech zone” policy. The court granted a petition for certiorari July 9 in a case known as Uzuegbunam v. Preczewski. According to its practice, the Supreme Court provided no reasons for its decision.

The Left Sells Socialism With Race
Read the history of the early days of socialism in Hayek’s masterpiece, The Counter-revolution in Science, and you’ll notice that socialism began life as a substitute for Christianity. They offered their own version of the doctrine of original sin: people are born innocent and turn evil only because of oppression and property is the greatest oppressor. Their “gospel” said that socialism could redeem mankind from evil by ending property and distributing wealth equally. At the same time, it would make everyone wealthy.

Natanz retaliation test run: Iran practices with missiles, drones in Yemen
Iran has been closely watching the use of drone and missile attack combinations being used by its Houthi allies in Yemen. This week, the Houthi rebels announced yet another new type of ballistic missile, showing footage of drones and other weapons they have used in recent years.
Iranian media has focused on this use of missiles and drones at the same time in an attack.

Houthis round up Yemen’s Jews as part of ‘ethnic cleansing’ efforts – report
The Houthi rebel group in Yemen arrested Jews in the Kharif District of the ‘Amran Governorate northwest of Sana’a as part of “ethnic cleansing” efforts as well as looting money from various sects and groups… Local sources from Kharif told Al-Mesryoon that the Houthis had rounded up the Jews and imprisoned them due to their religion and were pressuring them to leave Yemen.

Russia says joint patrol with Turkey hit by bomb attack in Syria
A roadside bomb planted by Syrian militants in the de-escalation zone in Idlib detonated near a joint Russian-Turkish patrol on Tuesday morning, injuring three Russian soldiers and some Turkish soldiers, the Russian Defense Ministry said. Russia called off the patrol following the blast near the town of Ariha in Idlib province that damaged one Russian and one Turkish armored personel carrier, the ministry said.

Bank of England Debating Digital Currency Creation, Bailey Says
“We are looking at the question of, should we create a Bank of England digital currency,” Bailey said Monday in a webinar event with students. “We’ll go on looking at it, as it does have huge implications on the nature of payments and society.” “I think in a few years time, we will be heading toward some sort of digital currency,” he added.

Armenia-Azerbaijan border sees deadly clashes
At least four Azeri troops have been killed in two days of clashes involving tanks and artillery on Azerbaijan’s border with Armenia. A conflict over the disputed territory of Nagorno-Karabakh remains unresolved, but the latest fighting was in Tavush, an area north of that territory. Azerbaijan’s military reported the four deaths, but said it had destroyed an Armenian fortification and artillery.

Global shares retreat as coronavirus surges, Sino-U.S. tensions rise
Global stocks slipped on Tuesday, oil sagged and a safety bid supported the dollar as simmering Sino-U.S. tensions and new coronavirus restrictions in California kept a lid on investor optimism… MSCI’s All-Country World Index edged down 0.4%, after touching a 20-week high on Monday. The pan-European STOXX 600 opened 1.5% lower and was heading for its worst day in 14 sessions after technology stocks dropped 3.4%.

Israel’s air force unveils new special forces squadron
The Israeli Air Force on Sunday unveiled a special squadron, which contains all the special forces of the aerial warfare branch, consolidating them under one command. “The 7th Aerial Special Forces Wing was established to meet operational needs and respond to changing and growing threats in the various arenas,” according to an army press release.

Dam talks between Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan end with no deal
The latest round of negotiations between Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia over the latter’s contentious dam on the Blue Nile has ended with no agreement, according to Egyptian and Sudanese officials. “All of the efforts exerted to reach a solution didn’t come to any kind of result,” Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said on Monday in an interview with Egypt’s DMC TV channel.

Rockland County New York Now Issuing $2,000 Per Day Fine For Anyone Who Refuses To Be Part Of Their COVID-19 Contact Tracing Surveillance 
Is anyone surprised at this? I certainly am not, the only surprising thing is that this model has not yet been adopted nationwide. Give it time, it will be. Wasn’t only as recently as April 10th that we were told that contact tracing would be voluntary? Yep, it sure was., right up to the moment when it wasn’t. Of course, just like the telephone tax used to fund the Spanish-American War in 1893, don’t expect it to go away anytime soon. What you can expect is hefty fines for non-compliance like what we are now seeing in New York.

One of the worst rainfall seasons on record hits China, massive floods affecting nearly 38 million people
Severe floods affecting wide swaths of China since June 2020 have left at least 141 people dead or missing and almost 38 million affected in 27 provinces, officials reported on Monday, July 13, 2020. Up to 433 rivers have risen to dangerous levels, with 33 of them crossing historical highs. This is one of the worst rainfall seasons on record, resulting in direct economic losses of more than 61 billion yuan ($8.7 billion USD).

At least 70 killed as heavy monsoon rains hit Assam, India
Incessant monsoon rains continue to affect India’s Assam state, with more than 1.2 million people in 24 out of 33 districts affected as of Sunday, July 12, 2020. Four more people died over the weekend due to rain-related incidents, pushing the death toll to 70.

The Enemies Of President Trump Are Attacking Him En Masse From Every Angle And On Every Level To Stop Him From Winning Reelection In November
You may not be paying attention, seeing how distracted we all are from the daily COVID-19 end times soap opera we are all forced to live in, but if you were paying attention you would notice something absolutely startling and incredible. You would see how all the enemies of Donald Trump, from the main stream media, the radical Left, and up to and including the Supreme Court, are all conspiring against President Trump, and all at the same time.

George Soros Donates $220 Million to Radical BLM Groups Including Movement to “End Policing as We Know It”
The Soros Foundation announced $220 million donations to BLM and black-led justice organizations building power in black communities across the country.

College Democrats, Satanists and Witches Team Up to Shut Down Young Conservatives of Texas Chapter
The University of North Texas College Democrats are allying with satanists and witches to try and shut down the school’s Young Conservatives of Texas (YCT) chapter.

HERE IT COMES: Bill Gates And His GAVI Vaccine Alliance Launching AI-Powered ‘Trust Stamp’ Combining A Vaccine And Digital Biometric ID In West Africa 
We have been warning you night and day since March that this was coming, now it’s here, the first iteration of Bill Gates fever dream masterpiece of a vaccine tied to digital identification. Under the banner of his GAVI Vaccine Alliance and through a partnership with MasterCard, AI is being used from a company called TrustStamp that ‘creates tokenized identities from any biometric modality, or other identity data, from any source’. Of course, Bill Gates is launching this in Africa where his bought and paid for credentials from the WHO give him an open door to use the people of Africa as guinea pigs. Welcome to Phase 1, in just a little under 4 months from the date we told you it was ‘coming soon’.

Rudy Giuliani: Black Lives Matter Will Be Exposed as ‘a Terrorist Organization’
..Giuliani also blasted Bill De Blasio’s commission of a Black Lives Matter mural outside Trump Tower in NYC, saying the New York City mayor proved himself to be “a communist.”

California now less than 90 days away from financial collapse… ANARCHY to follow
The State of California is now less than 90 days away from a financial collapse that can only be averted by acquiring new sources of loans or dramatically slashing government-funded services in health care, pensions, welfare and education. The cracks of financial insolvency are starting to show, and Newsom has no plan that doesn’t lead California into anarchy and destitution.

Britain shamefully betrays the Jewish People again
Britain—the architect of the San Remo Resolution and Treaty of Sevres in 1920 that led to the League of Nations Mandate for Palestine in 1922—has yet again shamefully betrayed the Jewish People by warning Israel not to extend its sovereignty into Judea and Samaria.

Newsom Closes Down Churches, Gyms, Hair Salons, All Indoor Dining, Bars, Theaters in California – NO END DATE TO LOCKDOWN GIVEN
California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) on Monday announced a complete shut down of indoor dining, theaters, bars, museums and zoos due to an increase in Coronavirus ‘cases.’

Headlines – 7/14/2020

Interest in Moving to Israeli Settlements Grows Amid Talk of Annexation, Pandemic

Jordan king warns Israel’s annexation plan jeopardizes regional peace

Israel’s virus cases pass 40,000 as official says full lockdown ‘a step away’

Ultra-Orthodox hold 3rd straight night of protests in Jerusalem against lockdown

New: Israel Allows Diaspora Relatives to Enter Israel

More than 6 million view Nazi death camp song on TikTok

Building the Bible’s ‘visual genome,’ an image at a time

Israeli research center finds 28 new Hezbollah missile launch sites

A second revolution? Syrians take to streets under Russia’s watchful eye

Iran’s nuclear facilities are mysteriously under attack

Iran vows ‘firm’ response to alleged Israeli sabotage of nuclear site

Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthis Say They Hit Saudi Oil Facility in Drone, Missile Attack

Alleged breaches of international law by Saudi forces in Yemen exceed 500

At least 11 dead and dozens of civilians injured in hourslong Taliban attack on Afghan intelligence complex

China Expands Military at India Border as Modi Accused of Surrendering Land

EU preparing measures against China over Hong Kong

Poland re-elects president who creates ‘dangerous’ society for gays, advocates say

U.N. expert accuses White House of ‘onslaught’ against media

Alaska Airlines flight turns around after passenger threatens to ‘kill everybody on this plane’

Soros to Donate $220 Million to American Racial Justice Groups

NFL’s Redskins to change name after years of pressure, including from ADL

Chance of big San Andreas earthquake increased by Ridgecrest temblors, study suggests

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Fais, Micronesia

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits the Balleny Islands region

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits south of the Kermadec Islands

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Port-Vila, Vanuatu

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Lakatoro, Vanuatu

Nishinoshima volcano south of Japan erupts to 28,000ft

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 24,000ft

Popocateptl volcano in Mexico erupts to 19,000ft

Sangay volcano in Ecuador erupts to 19,000ft

Fuego volcano in Guatemala erupts to 15,000ft

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 14,000ft

Karymsky volcano on Kamchatka, Russia erupts to 10,000ft

China floods: ‘wartime’ measures brought in to tackle worst deluge in decades

‘Dangerous,’ record-breaking heat scorches southern USA

Wild Weather: Colorado Town Sets Record Low And High Less Than 12 Hours Apart

‘Teetering at the edge’: Scientists warn of rapid melting of Antarctica’s ‘Doomsday glacier’

Coronavirus masks, gloves polluting Europe’s rivers

Coronavirus Outbreak at U.S. Bases in Japan Roils an Uneasy Relationship

U.S. bases in Japan locked down as coronavirus outbreak blamed on July 4th parties

Hong Kong virologist claiming coronavirus cover-up tells ‘Bill Hemmer Reports’: ‘We don’t have much time’

Moderna Analyst: Coronavirus Vaccine Will Get Approved, Clock $5B+ In Orders Over Next Few Years

French epidemiologist warns that an effective vaccine by 2021 is unlikely

Is too much hope being put into a coronavirus vaccine?

Virus immunity in recovered patients may be gone in months, researchers say

Scans Reveal Heart Damage in Over Half of COVID-19 Patients in Study

Winter wave of coronavirus ‘could be worse than first’

WHO on COVID-19: No return to normality for ‘foreseeable future’

Trump Tweets Claim That CDC, Media, Democrats and Doctors Are All ‘Lying’ About Coronavirus

Trump Pushes Conspiracy Theory That Doctors Are Lying About COVID-19 to Damage His Re-Election Chances

New York Pushes to Track Some U.S. Visitors to Stem Coronavirus Spread

Cuomo threatens $2K fine if you break coronavirus quarantine rules

California’s Newsom creates ‘strike teams’ to enforce business shutdowns amid coronavirus surge

Bars, Restaurants, Worship Services, Malls, Gyms In 30 California Counties Ordered To Close As COVID Cases Surge

Florida Anti-Mask Activists Give Free Meals to People Without Masks as Virus Cases Surge

L.A., San Diego schools will start online this fall – a growing trend against what Trump wants

Mental health experts say COVID-19 reopening, closing can cause anxiety, depression

UN: Coronavirus pandemic could push tens of millions into chronic hunger

Super-rich call for higher taxes on wealthy to pay for Covid-19 recovery

Workers are pushed to the brink as they continue to wait for delayed unemployment payments

McConnell: No recovery bill without lawsuit protections for ‘everyone related to the coronavirus’

Federal Reserve’s $3 trillion virus rescue inflates market bubbles

Bank of England Debating Digital Currency Creation, Bailey Says

Judges block six-week abortion bans in Georgia and Tennessee

90% fewer Christians who are facing persecution being resettled to US since 2015

Evangelical, Catholic Leaders Say Trump Has Left Persecuted Christians in Danger

Tuesday 7-14-20

Kenneth Gentry – Postmillennialism and the Great Tribulation part 4

Mike Evans Sues Jentezen Franklin Over Holocaust Survivor Funds

Churches Report Chicago Officials Threatening to Bulldoze Facilities for Not Complying with COVID-19 Mandates

Televangelists receive millions in PPP loans, Catholic Church got $1.4 billion

Former Bethel prophecy teacher reveals inside information about Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry

SBC Pastor Says Founders of Southern Baptist Seminary Were Not Saved, History Must be Eradicated

Houston pastor dies of COVID-19; same-sex spouse fights to stay alive

NYT: Blame Churches, Not Riots, For Rise In Positive Covid-19 Tests

A New Record? TN’s Abortion Ban Blocked By Judge MINUTES After Being Signed into Law

Why Rioters Will Eventually Turn Their Rage On Christianity If Not Stopped

Is It OK for Christians to Push Back Against Authoritarian Governments and Other Wickedness?

World Renown Religious Con Man and Pathological Liar Morris Cerullo is dead at 88

Apostasywatch Report on Morris Cerullo + Video of Fake Miracle

Kelly Preston dies; Lisa Marie Presley loses son to suicide; Scientology remains useless

Liberty’s Jerry Falwell Supports Effort to Rename Lynchburg

Florida man lights Catholic Church on fire with parishioners inside

Fire destroys much of 249-year-old church in California

Limestone County (Alabama) church destroyed by fire

Joe Biden Promises to Force Little Sisters of the Poor to Fund Abortions

Five killed after armed attack on South African church

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“A simple layman armed with Scripture is to be believed above a pope or a council without it…” – Martin Luther

July 14 Life-Changing Moments With God


Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.

May the word of Christ dwell in me richly in all wisdom.

I will keep my heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life. Death and life are in the power of my tongue. As the mouth of the righteous speaks wisdom, and his tongue talks of justice, and Your law, Lord God, is in his heart; none of his steps shall slide. So help me let no corrupt word proceed out of my mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.

Lord, I can only speak the things which I have seen and heard in Your Word. I believe, therefore I speak.

If I confess Jesus before men, He will also confess me before You, my Father who is in heaven. With the heart I believe unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

May my heart of love and my knowledge of You, Lord God, overflow in words of praise and truth especially to those who don’t yet know You.

Matthew 12:34; Colossians 3:16; Proverbs 4:23; Proverbs 18:21; Psalm 37:30–31; Ephesians 4:29; Acts 4:20; Psalm 116:10; Matthew 10:32; Romans 10:10[1]


[1] Jeremiah, D. (2007). Life-Changing Moments With God (p. 213). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

July 14 Thoughts for the quiet hour


Behold the man

John 19:5

“Behold the man!” was Pilate’s jeer. That is what all the ages have been doing since, and the vision has grown more and more glorious. As they have looked, the crown of thorns has become a crown of golden radiance, and the cast-off robe has glistened like the garments He wore on the night of the transfiguration. Martyrs have smiled in the flames at that vision. Sinners have turned at it to a new life. Little children have seen it, and have had awakened by it dim recollections of their Heaven-home. Toward it the souls of men yearn ever.

Robert E. Speer[1]


[1] Hardman, S. G., & Moody, D. L. (1997). Thoughts for the quiet hour. Willow Grove, PA: Woodlawn Electronic Publishing.

July 14 Streams in the Desert


Bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar.” (Psalm 118:27.)

IS not this altar inviting thee? Shall we not ask to be bound to it, that we may never be able to start back from our attitude of consecration? There are times when life is full of roseate light, and we choose the Cross; at other times, when the sky is grey, we shrink from it. It is well to be bound.

Wilt Thou bind us, most blessed Spirit, and enamor us with the Cross, and let us never leave it? Bind us with the scarlet cord of redemption, and the golden cord of love, and the silver cord of Advent-hope, so we will not go back from it, or wish for another lot than to be the humble partners with our Lord in His pain and sorrow!

The horns of the altar invite thee. Wilt thou come? Wilt thou dwell ever in a spirit of resigned humility, and give thy self wholly to the Lord?—Selected.

The story is told of a colored brother who, at a camp meeting, tried to give himself to God. Every night at the altar he consecrated himself; but every night before he left the meeting, the devil would come to him and convince him that he did not feel any different and therefore he was not consecrated.

Again and again he was beaten back by the adversary. Finally, one evening he came to the meeting with an axe and a big stake. After consecrating himself, he drove the stake into the ground just where he had knelt. As he was leaving the building, the devil came to him as usual and tried to make him believe that it was all a farce.

At once he went back to the stake and, pointing to it, said, “Look here, Mr. Devil, do you see that stake? Well, that’s my witness that God has forever accepted me.” Immediately the devil left him, and he had no further doubts on the subject.

The Still Small Voice.

Beloved, if you are tempted to doubt the finality of your consecration, drive a stake down somewhere and let it be your witness before God and even the devil that you have settled the question forever.

Are you groping for a blessing,

Never getting there?

Listen to a word in season,

Get somewhere.

Are you struggling for salvation

By your anxious prayer?

Stop your struggling, simply trust, and—

Get somewhere.

Does the answer seem to linger

To your earnest prayer?

Turn your praying into praise, and—

Get somewhere.

You will never know His fulness

Till you boldly dare

To commit your all to Him, and—

Get somewhere.

Songs of the Spirit.[1]


[1] Cowman, L. B. (1925). Streams in the Desert (pp. 208–209). Los Angeles, CA: The Oriental Missionary Society.

Mohamed El-Erian warns that financial stress from coronavirus is ‘far from over’ and says investors must prepare for a debt crunch | Markets Insider

  • Mohamed El-Erian, the chief economic adviser at Allianz, has warned in a Financial Times op-ed that investor stress from Covid-19 is “far from over” and they must prepare for a debt crunch.
  • “The financial stress caused by Covid-19 is far from over,” he wrote.
  • Investors should choose to focus on adjusting their portfolios while thinking about the recovery value of their assets, the notable economist said.
  • He pointed out that the emergence of retail investors in stock markets displays a sense of complacency among investors about the future of the economy.
  • “This time, retail investors are front and centre. But it is the next stage that we should already be thinking about,” he wrote.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

In a Financial Times op-ed, famed economist Mohamed El-Erian warned that the financial stress from Covid-19 is not even close to being over.

“The financial stress caused by COVID-19 is far from over,” he wrote.

El-Erian wrote that investors should ready themselves for defaults that will “spread far beyond the most vulnerable corporate and sovereign borrowers.”

He advised that instead of buying assets which have “stunningly decoupled” values from their underlying fundamentals, investors should adjust their portfolios to focus on the recovery potential of their assets.

So far, El-Erian wrote, defaults have only been limited to certain hard-hit sectors over the past few months of financial pain on both corporate and public balance sheets, but that could change, he warned.

“The sense that the worst did not come to pass has fed complacency among investors of all stripes,” he said. 

A sense of complacency has risen among all types of investors and a glaring example of that, he wrote, is the emergence of retail investors — who roughly make up 25% of stock market activity amid recent volatility.

“A new generation of retail investors has emerged, helping stocks on their relentless march higher,” he said.

Read moreUBS says buy these 18 diamond-in-the-rough stocks that will offer massive gains over multiple years, even as their underlying industries suffer

A rise in business vigilance has been propelled by a resurgence in coronavirus cases around the world, he said while pointing out that some states in the US have reversed their reopening policies. 

This scenario “reduces borrowers’ willingness and ability to meet contractual obligations” especially in hospitality, retail, and in developing countries, El-Erian wrote.

Other concerns for investors include: a record speed of bankruptcies, job losses across all types of companies, deferrals in commercial real estate and credit card payments, and some developing countries defaulting on debt payments, he said.

Despite several points of worry, investors are displaying “insufficient concern” as they continue to expect a sharp V-shaped recovery helped by development of a vaccine.

Read moreA Wall Street investment chief dispels the notion that surging stocks are disconnected from the economy — and lays out 3 reasons why the market will continue to climb over the next year

On the other end, safeguards from governments and international organizations have managed to boost sentiment, El-Erian said. But he cautioned that such measures will not save investors from sharing some capital losses. 

“Many have already made it clear that they expect ‘private sector involvement’. That is likely to mean, at the minimum, the short-term suspension of interest and principal payments.”

“This time, retail investors are front and centre. But it is the next stage that we should already be thinking about. That requires much more careful scrutiny from investors than the past few months have demanded,” El-Erian concluded.

SEE ALSO: More than 80% of investors fear the market will plummet again before the COVID pandemic ends, UBS says

— Read on markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/mohamed-el-erian-warns-financial-stress-covid-19-not-over-2020-7-1029391241

Angela Davis to vote for Joe Biden, ‘candidate who can be most effectively pressured’ by left – Washington Times

Famed Marxist intellectual and activist Angela Davis trended Monday on social media after throwing her support behind Joe Biden for president, calling it crucial to back the candidate “who can be most effectively pressured” by the left.

— Read on m.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/jul/13/angela-davis-vote-joe-biden-candidate-who-can-be-m/

US Recovery Stalls As Pandemic ‘Second Wave’ Threatens To Unleash Double-Dip Recession  | Zero Hedge

“I think we’ve got a second leg down…” 

The US economy has stalled as the virus pandemic flares up. Real-time data shows slowdowns in consumer foot traffic, restaurant foot traffic, discretionary income, and overall economic activity as virus cases rise in 38 states. 

The US reported its largest single-day caseload increase on Friday, with more than 67,000 new confirmed cases. Six states (Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Michigan, and Texas) have seen a surge in cases over the last month – governors in these states are reversing reopening plans, with 15 more states pausing reopenings. 

On top of rising cases, the death toll in the US rose last week for the first time in months, as hospitals in the sunbelt and coastal states become inundated with virus patients. The country reported 4,200 deaths in the last seven days. Virus-related hospitalizations have surged to levels not seen since May, a troubling sign for hard-hit states that suggest the trend will worsen through July. 

The reemergence of the virus cases, forcing governors to pause or reverse reopening plans have stalled out economic activity and risks the shape of the recovery being downgraded from a “V” to “U” or even the dreadful “L.” Also, a looming fiscal cliff risk crashing consumption as more than a quarter of all personal income is reliant on direct deposits from the government.  

Courtesy of Capital Economics, which has compiled a handy breakdown of real-time US indicators, we can see the full extent of how the recovery has stalled. 

Consumer foot traffic for casual dining and malls have yet to revert to pre-corona levels as the bounce stalled in late June. Foot traffic for auto dealers and big-box retailers have almost returned to January levels but plateaued in the same period.

Restaurant foot traffic (measured in person % Y/Y) remains collapsed with recovery stalled through June and reversing in July.

Discretionary consumption (% Y/Y) shows continued depression for air travel, restaurant diners, and hotel occupancy. 

The NY Fed’s Weekly Economic Index does not support the V-shape narrative the Trump administration routinely touts on Twitter.

The stalled recovery is set to pressure employers who will be forced to layoff another round of folks. Americans will be staying home this summer and not traveling as the virus-induced recession has wrecked their finances.   

It’s becoming evident the virus and or the emergence of cases can influence economic recovery shape. Damage from the downturn is widespread, with permanent job loss and deep economic scarring set to derail the recovery.

Here’s Gary Shilling, the president of A. Gary Shilling & Co., take on what could be next for markets as investors figure out the shape of the recovery is an “L.”

“I think we’ve got a second leg down and that’s very much reminiscent of what happened in the 1930s where people appreciate the depth of this recession and the disruption and how long it’s going to take to recover,” said Shilling. 

Shilling said today’s stock market bounce from March lows resembles the initial dip then rebound in 1929 – and we all know what happened next… 

The Fed and Trump administration better unleash another round of MMT or a double-dip recession is ahead for the back half of the year.  

For more color on the stalled recovery via real-time data, here is Bank of America’s latest credit and debit card spending trends. 

— Read on www.zerohedge.com/markets/real-time-data-warns-us-recovery-stalling-virus-pandemic-remerges

Blog Orientation for New Readers and Old Friends — Michelle Lesley

I try to run this article every so often to orient new followers (and old friends who haven’t yet explored all the nooks and crannies of the blog) to the various features and information available here. I’ve had a large influx of new followers lately, so I hope you’ll find these resources helpful.

Welcome Tab If you haven’t had a chance to read the Welcome- Start Here tab in the blue menu bar at the top of this page, it’s a good way to get acclimated to the blog quickly. You’ll learn some fast facts about me, my comment and e-mail policies, and more.

Comments, E-mails, Social Media Messages If you’ve sent me an e-mail, submitted a comment on one of my articles, or sent me a private message on social media and I haven’t responded to the message or published the comment, this is why: E-mail, Messages, and Blog Comments Policy (Plus additional helpful information)

The search bar is your friend. If you want to know my take on something or whether I’ve written on a particular person or topic, the search bar is the best place to start and much faster than e-mailing or messaging me. The search bar is located at the very bottom of every blog page.

The tabs at the top are your friends, too. The tabs in the blue menu bar at the top of the blog are designed to provide quick information to many of the questions I’m most frequently asked.

“What do you think of Teacher X?” Probably the largest volume of questions I get is readers wanting to know my take on particular teachers and ministries. I would love to be able to respond immediately to each one, but it takes a tremendous amount of time to research these folks. Because I know you need answers right away, and because every Christian should know how to research teachers for herself (you should never just blindly take anyone’s word {including mine} that someone is a false teacher), if you can’t find the information you’re looking for on a certain teacher at the Popular False Teachers tab at the top of this page or by using the search bar, I’ve written this article to help you research teachers for yourself: Is She a False Teacher? 7 Steps to Figuring it Out on Your Own.

“Discernment is for doody-heads!” I understand it’s not easy to be told that a pastor/teacher/author you’ve grown to love is a false teacher. I’ve been in that position myself. But Christians are people of the Book. That means we measure everything by Scripture, not by our personal preferences, feelings, or opinions. I’ve written numerous articles on teachers and ministries which can be found under the Popular False Teachers tab (and, just a few of the many awesome teachers out there are under the Recommended Bible Teachers tab). I don’t warn against false teachers because I’m a hater. I do it because it’s Scriptural and because I love the Christian women who are being victimized – often without even knowing it – by false teachers. I tend to hear the same objections to my discernment articles over and over and over again. Answering the Opposition- Responses to the Most Frequently Raised Discernment Objections answers, from Scripture, the objections people raise to my discernment articles. (I don’t answer e-mails or publish comments that are answered by this article.)

Searching for a new church? It can be really hard to find a doctrinally sound church these days, and I’d like to do everything I can to help. Check out the Searching for a new church? tab in the blue menu bar at the top of this page. You’ll find tons of resources on what to look for in a good church, several church search engines, and churches recommended by readers.

Podcast Need something to listen to? Amy Spreeman and I have a weekly podcast called A Word Fitly SpokenClick the Podcast tab in the blue menu bar at the top of this page to check it out.

Church Ladies Complementarianism can be difficult to navigate in a feminist world and an increasingly feminist church. You might find my Rock Your Role article series helpful, since it deals with the Scriptures governing women’s roles in the church. I keep Rock Your Role FAQsupdated, so long time readers might be interested in giving that one a re-read.

Financial Support I don’t receive any income or compensation from blogging. But if you or your family have been blessed by my work and you’d like to be a blessing to me and my family in return on an ongoing, occasional, or one time basis, please click here.

Speaking Engagements/Podcasts I’d love to come speak at your Christian women’s conference, to the ladies of your church, or on your Christian podcast. Check out my Speaking Engagements tab in the blue menu bar at the top of this page for more information. I’ve got lots of open slots on my calendar, so check it out and drop me an e-mail.

via Blog Orientation for New Readers and Old Friends — Michelle Lesley

Fed creating stock market bubble by printing trillions of dollars in coronavirus relief — RT Business News

Fed creating stock market bubble by printing trillions of dollars in coronavirus relief

The $3 trillion rescue plan by the US Federal Reserve to limit the economic damage from the Covid-19 pandemic is fueling excesses across US capital markets, investors say.

The Fed has pledged unlimited financial asset purchases to sustain market liquidity, increasing its balance sheet from $4.2 trillion in February to $7 trillion currently.

Most of those purchases have been limited to US Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities, but the Fed’s pledge to bolster the corporate bond market has been enough to spur a frenzy among investors for bonds and stocks.

“Covid-19 is now inversely related to the markets. The worse that Covid-19 gets, the better the markets do, because the Fed will bring in stimulus. That’s what has been driving markets,” Andrew Brenner, head of international fixed income at NatAlliance, was cited as saying by Reuters.

The market bubbles that investors are attributing to the Federal Reserve’s fight with the pandemic include the stock market bonanza and the IPO frenzy. Analysts point out that the Fed hasn’t bought stocks as part of its financial stimulus programs, but its near-zero interest rates and credit support for large swaths of corporate America have driven yield-hungry investors back to the equity market.

 Also on rt.com

Fed’s stock market manipulations will lead to ‘another bubble & major meltdown,’ chief strategist tells Boom Bust

Since their bottom on March 23, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average have both surged over 40 percent, with the Nasdaq composite gaining nearly 60 percent. The S&P 500’s forward price-to-earnings ratio is currently 21.5 – a level last seen during the dotcom boom 20 years ago.

The stock market euphoria was followed by an initial public offerings (IPOs) frenzy.

Refinitiv international financing review data showed that a record $184 billion was raised in US equity capital markets in the second quarter. Over $8.9 billion worth of IPOs in the second quarter were priced above the target range – the highest amount since the third quarter of 2014, according to Dealogic.

“Why anyone would buy Nissans at Bentley prices is beyond me, but that’s what happens generally with any sexy IPO. Sure, the Nissan has four wheels and it’s fine transportation, but is it worth a Bentley valuation?” Richard Bernstein, CEO of Richard Bernstein Advisors, told Reuters.

Meanwhile, the US regulator’s bond-buying programs have encouraged companies to tap credit markets and made the second quarter the busiest ever for debt issuance. Some $1.2 trillion of investment-grade paper was sold in the first half of 2020, which is the highest issuance volume ever recorded by the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association. Even though the Fed refrained from buying most junk-rated bonds, issuance was at $200 billion through June – more than double last year’s rate.

 Also on rt.com

US national debt hits $26 TRILLION, soaring by $1 trillion just in one month

“Investment grade and high yield bonds had an incredible quarter, in terms of issuance and performance. We just continue to see more and more money flow into those markets,” said Ted Swimmer, head of capital markets at Citizens Commercial Banking. “But there’s been so much new issuance in the second quarter, you get concerned you’re not going to see a ton of new issuance in the third quarter,” he added.

— Read on www.rt.com/business/494589-federal-reserve-inflates-market-bubbles/

July 14, 2020 Morning Verse Of The Day

The Divine Law Applied

So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all men, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith. (6:10)

Here is a final, practical injunction that goes with the principle of sowing and reaping, given as a guide to believers in their walk in the Spirit.

Opportunity translates kairos, which literally refers to a fixed and distinct period of time. The phrase while we have does not refer to occasional opportunities that may arise in a believer’s life but to the total opportunity of his present earthly existence. The idea is, while we have opportunity during our life on earth. In other words, a believer’s entire life is his unique but limited opportunity to serve others in the Lord’s name. The idea is also implied of seeking for and even making particular opportunities within the broader opportunity of our time on earth. The reflexive exhortation, let us do is from ergazomai, which means to be active, to work effectively and diligently, and is here a self-call to great effort in taking every opportunity to sow for God’s glory.

Good is from agathos and has a definite article in front of it in the Greek. In other words, Paul is speaking of a particular good, the good. It is the agathos goodness of moral and spiritual excellence that is a fruit of the Spirit (5:22), not simply kalos goodness that is limited to physical and temporal things. It is the internal goodness produced by the Spirit in the hearts of obedient believers, which then finds expression in external goodness spoken by his mouth and performed by his hands.

It is also good that is unqualified and unrestricted, to be shown all men, including unbelievers. “For such is the will of God,” Peter said, “that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men” (1 Pet. 2:15). One of the best ways to thwart criticism of Christianity is for Christians to do good to unbelievers. Loving concern will do more to win a person to Christ than the most carefully articulated argument. The heart of every Christian testimony should be kindness. “In all things show yourself to be an example of good deeds,” Paul admonished Titus, “with purity in doctrine, dignified, sound in speech which is beyond reproach, in order that the opponent may be put to shame, having nothing bad to say about us” (Titus 2:7–8). Later in the same letter Paul says, “Concerning these things I want you to speak confidently, so that those who have believed God may be careful to engage in good deeds. These things are good and profitable for men” (3:8).

As important as doing good to unbelievers is, however, it is especially to be demonstrated to those who are of the household of the faith. The first test of our love for God is our love for His other children, our brothers and sisters in Christ. “We know that we have passed out of death into life,” John says, “because we love the brethren” (1 John 3:14). “If someone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves god should love his brother also” (4:20–21).

Such sowing makes for joyful reaping, and it is also dynamic testimony to those outside salvation. How we treat each other is our greatest attraction to a world seeking love, kindness, and compassion.[1]

10 Paul ends his anti-libertine exhortation to the Galatians (5:13–6:10) with this inferential conclusion. Believers are to take advantage of every God-given opportunity (again using the term kairos) to do good. This is not merely Paul consigning the Christian ethic to serendipity or presenting behavioral righteousness as an option of convenience, as though he were suggesting some “Christianized” version of the call to carpe diem (“seize the day”). Rather, he exhorts believers here to maintain a holy awareness or sensitivity to opportunities God places before us to live out the fruit of the Spirit.

Christian ethical and social responsibility, Paul further indicates here, is all-embracing (“let us do good to all people”). Believers, as those who are “spiritual” (6:1), have both the Spirit-given empowerment and the God-given opportunities positively to affect the world around them by keeping in step with the Spirit. We have obligation, then, to manifest the Spirit’s presence (“fruit”) in our lives while among our fellow believers (vv. 1–4, 10) and to all those outside as well (v. 10; cf. Ro 1:14).[2]

10  “So then” (RV, etc.) represents a phrase, found in the NT only in the Pauline writings, which is used to introduce the logical conclusion of a preceding statement. Here the connection with v. 9 may be understood as follows: just as there is a time for reaping, so there is a time for sowing; this being the case, we should make good use of the sowing time. “As opportunity offers,” which suggests the idea “when the opportunity presents itself,” is perhaps more accurately rendered “while we have opportunity” (NASB); the expression implies that believers do have this opportunity.86 Corresponding to the “time” of the eschatological harvest mentioned in the last verse, the “opportunity” of this verse refers to the believer’s life-time: the believer has “the ethical responsibility to make sensible use of the time” at his disposal (cf. Eph. 5:16).

Particular mention is made of the responsibility to “work for the good of all” or to “do good to all people” (NIV). The word for “good” here is to agathon, whereas to kalon is used in v. 9. It has been suggested that while ta agatha are things good in their results, such as beneficent actions, ta kala are things absolutely good, beautiful in themselves. But Mt. 12:12 (where kalon is implied in the phrase “to do good”) suggests that kalon can denote a beneficent act and can as a result be synonymous with agathon in that sense. Be that as it may, the phrase “to all people” makes it plain that the reference here is to beneficent deeds, whether the benefit be spiritual or material. This principle of “doing good to all” is applied especially to “members of the household of faith,” that is, members of the family of those whose characteristic is faith—the last word being taken in the active and subjective sense of trust,91 not in the objective sense as equivalent to the gospel or Christianity (as in NEB “the faith”).92

The concept of believers forming a household or family finds expression elsewhere in Paul’s letters (cf. Eph. 2:19; 1 Tim. 3:15). Here the distinction between the family of faith and “all people” (cf. 1 Thess. 5:15) shows that for Paul the time-honored division of mankind into Jew and Gentile was less significant than the believer-unbeliever distinction; indeed, the racial and religious distinction of Jew and Gentile lost all significance for him (Gal. 3:28; 5:6). He reckons that the Christian has a greater responsibility toward his fellow-believers than toward other people in general; this may have had to do with the actual historical situation: Christians in financial difficulties could hardly expect assistance from their pagan friends, because they had departed from the religious traditions of their neighbors, but their pagan friends would, however, expect Christians to help one another.96 In this connection, D. Guthrie reminds us that the precedence given to the Christian community  does not exclude the wider responsibility for “all”; the latter is, rather, urged on us and linked “with an even greater responsibility towards fellow believers.” As for “the proportioning of responsibility between the larger and the narrower group,” this “must remain a matter for individual conscience.”97[3]

10 Paul now presents the conclusion that he would draw from the foregoing. Now (as long as there is a “now”) is the time, the “season,” for sowing; believers are well advised therefore to make the best use of the opportunity they have during this mortal life to “work what is good” on behalf of every person,209 paying special attention to the “members of the household of faith.” The word “season,” repeated from the preceding verse, refers here to a period of time with certain constraints or duress (namely, that the time will extend only so far, after which people will face God’s judgment).

Paul draws two concentric circles of care and benevolence. Christians are to reflect God’s love in this world, thus offering loving care and assistance to all people, even as God gives the gifts of sun and rain to all (Matt 5:44–48). They need, however, to take special care to extend support to fellow Christians, since the latter would now largely lack the support of non-Christian networks. These fellow believers are here, as so frequently throughout the New Testament epistles (following the precedent of Jesus himself; see Mark 3:31–35; 10:29–30), described as family, consisting of those who have been adopted together into God’s household as God’s sons and daughters (4:5–7), who are children by virtue of trusting (exhibiting “faith” toward) God’s promise. In connection with this identification, early Christian leaders sought also to shape the ethos of the church (a group of largely unrelated people) after the ethos of family. For example, family members (at their best) seek to cooperate with one another and avoid competition. They seek to advance one another’s honor and interests, not competing for honor at one another’s expense, as is typical among nonkin. They more readily hide one another’s shame from public view rather than parade it. Because of this mutual commitment to each other’s interests, kin can share a deep level of trust in one another. They also share resources freely, seek to maintain harmony and unity, and work attentively toward forgiveness and reconciliation.213 Many facets of this ethos are apparent behind Paul’s exhortations to his “sisters and brothers” in Galatia.

Alongside other early Christian leaders, Paul recognizes that the steady progress of the individual disciple moving out from being driven by the flesh toward being fully Spirit-led requires the investment, intervention, and support of other disciples. As individuals, we are easily prone to deceive ourselves concerning what comes from the Spirit and what comes from the flesh. We are easily prone to our own weakness and to being “overtaken” by some sin (6:1). Paul commissions all the members of the Christian community to help any individual member recognize when he or she is not speaking the truth to himself or herself about some direction or practice he or she has embraced.

Paul calls for a level of mutual involvement and investment that is rare, particularly in the Western world. In the West, the values (one might even say, the “foundational principles”) of individualism and of the boundary between private and public are so strong that it is highly countercultural for believers now to practice Paul’s exhortations. Nonetheless, we need the intervention of fellow Christians who will confront sin in our lives and who will do it gently and with forbearance. We need the support, encouragement, and admonition of other Christians in order to maintain our resolve to resist the enticements of sin and to give ourselves fully to the Spirit’s victory over our fleshly impulses. Paul’s directions are salutary in another important regard here, as they direct speech about a sister or brother who has fallen afoul of the Spirit-led life to that sister or brother, where it may do some good, as opposed to the common but toxic practice of speaking about that sister or brother to others for no edifying purpose.

Paul seeks to nurture a church culture of mutual burden bearing, rather than one in which we neglect or even add to the burdens of our sisters and brothers. Indeed, the degree to which a church community is committed and effective in regard to such burden-bearing (and not just among its own congregation, but cooperatively with other local and global churches as well) may be one of the more important metrics of its spiritual health and maturity.

Throughout this commentary, we have tried to do justice to justification as “gift and task.” It is “gift” insofar as Christ gave himself on our behalf, as an expression of God’s love and generosity toward us, to reconcile us to God and to redeem us from this present, evil age. It is “gift” insofar as God pours his Holy Spirit out upon all who are joined in trust to Jesus, the Seed. It is “gift” insofar as this Holy Spirit, freely lavished upon us, is sufficient to guide us into and empower us for living righteously before God, specifically by living fully in line with the commandment to love our neighbor with the care, investment, and commitment that the fleshly person reserves for himself or herself above the neighbor. It is “task,” however, insofar as we must “walk by the Spirit” (5:16), “fall in line with the Spirit” (5:25), “serve one another as slaves through love” (5:13), “stand fast,” not submitting again to the powers and principles that formerly enslaved us, from which Christ freed us at such cost to himself (5:1) and, here, “sow to the Spirit” by “working what is good toward all” (6:7–10), fulfilling the command to “love one’s neighbor as oneself” in concrete, practical, beneficent, helpful, needful ways. Participating in this process of transformation that God has opened up for believers in Christ through the power of the Spirit leads to “the final fulfillment of that which began in justification, namely, the gift of salvation to be consummated at the last day.”

Paul closes his exhortations to the Christians in Galatia by reminding them—and us—of our ultimate responsibility before God to use God’s gifts well, to submit our lives fully to the Spirit who came upon us only because Jesus bore the cost of submitting his life fully to God’s good will for us. Paul concludes with the solemn warning that we cannot fool God. No theology of justification or eternal security or other conceptual construct that we espouse will pull the wool over God’s eyes as he peers into our hearts and minds to learn: did we spend our lives sowing to the flesh or sowing to the Spirit? Did we dedicate ourselves to making the best use of the gifts God gave us to bring us fully in line with his righteousness, to bring Christ to life within us and, through us, ongoingly to life throughout the world? Did we resist the Spirit in order to protect some areas of fleshly indulgence? Does God recognize his Son in the people we came to be? The good news is that God lavishly supplies all that is needed for us to walk in righteousness and enjoy the consequences of living righteous lives. What is required of us is, essentially, to cultivate awareness (including honesty with ourselves before God and one another) and steady commitment as we consistently invest ourselves and our resources as the Spirit directs and empowers.[4]

6:10. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.

The word καιρός is translated as ‘season’, or ‘time’ (NIV), in verse 9 and as ‘opportunity’ in verse 10. The rough idea is that ‘In time we shall be blessed if we make time to do good.’ We are to do good to all. Albert Barnes cites the words of Cotton Mather: ‘The opportunity to do good imposes the obligation to do it.’ Calvin too writes movingly, ‘We are all of one flesh, and we bear a mark which ought to induce us to do all that we possibly can for one another.’ There is a sense, says Calvin, in which we can speak of the brotherhood of all men, including ‘the Moor’ (the Muslim) and ‘the barbarian’ (the pagan).168 He almost sounds like an old-fashioned liberal here, but he is only saying what Paul is saying.

Yet there is a special claim of the Christian upon another Christian. The house of Israel (Num. 20:29; 2 Sam. 1:12; Ezek. 3:4) is now the household of God (Eph. 2:19; 1 Tim. 3:15; 1 Peter 4:17). Your family members have more claims upon you than anybody else—if you do not look after them, you are worse than an unbeliever (1 Tim. 5:8). There are certain people whom God has made your special concern. The same is true with the Christian family. All human beings have a claim on us, but Christians have a special claim on us. John Brown says that for a Christian to be unkind to a Christian is ‘monstrous’. Defrauding anybody is wrong, but for one Christian to defraud another is especially wrong (1 Cor. 6:8). Things that are evil become even worse if they are committed against one’s own family. More positively and by extension, there is a special obligation of the Christian towards his fellow Christian. In Haldane’s words, ‘As children of the same family, and members of the same body, they are, therefore, laid under the strongest obligation to love and to do good to each other.’[5]

Ver. 10.—As we have therefore opportunity (ἄρα οὖν ὡς καιρὸν ἔχομεν); so then, while (or, as) we have a season for so doing. Ἄρα οὖν: this combination of particles is frequently found in St. Paul’s writings, being so far as appears (cf. Winer, ‘Gram. N. T.,’ § 53, 8 a) peculiar to him (1 Thess. 5:6; 2 Thess. 2:15; Rom. 5:18; 7:3, 25; 8:12; 9:16, 18; 14:12, 19; Eph. 2:19). In every instance it marks a certain pause after a statement of premisses; in several, following a citation from the Old Testament; the writer, after waiting, so to speak, for the reader duly to take into his mind what has been already said, proceeds to draw his inference. The ἄρα seems to point backward to the premisses; the οὖν to introduce the inference. “Well, then,” or “so, then,” appears a fairly equivalent rendering. In 1 Thess. 5:6 and Rom. 14:19 ἄρα οὖν introduces a cohortative verb, as here; in 2 Thess. 2:15, an imperative. The words which follow seem to be commonly understood as meaning “whenever opportunity offers.” But this falls short of recognizing the solemn consideration of the proprieties of the present sowing-time, which the previous context prepares us to expect to find here; the term “season,” as Meyer remarks, having its proper reference already fixed by the antithetical season of reaping referred to in ver. 9. Moreover, instead of ὡς, would not the apostle, if he had meant “whenever,” have used the intensified form καθώς? Chrysostom gives the sense well thus: “As it is not always in our power to sow, so neither is it to show mercy; when we have been borne hence, though we may desire it a thousand times, we shall be able to effect nothing.” Indeed it is questionable whether the sense now pleaded for is not that which was intended by the rendering in the Authorized Version. The particle ώς probably means “while,” as it does in Luke 12:58 and in John 12:35, 36, where it should replace the ἕως of the Textus Receptus; but this needs not to be insisted upon. Anyway, we are reminded of the uncertain tenure by which we hold the season for doing that which, if done, will have so blessed a consequence. Let us do good unto all men (ἐργαζώμεθα τὸ ἀγαθὸν πρὸς πάντας); let us be workers of that which is good towards all men. The verbs ἐργάζομαι and ποιῶ appear used interchangeably in Col. 3:23 and 3 John 5; but the former seems to suggest, more vividly than the other, either the concrete action, the ἔργον, which is wrought; or else the part enacted by the agent as being a worker of such or such a description—as if, here, it were “let us be benefactors.” The adjective “good” (ἀγαθός) is often, perhaps most commonly, used to designate what is morally excellent in general; thus, e.g., in Rom. 2:10, “the worker of that which is good” is contrasted with “the worker-out of that which is evil,” as a description of a man’s moral character in general. But on the other hand, this adjective frequently takes the sense of “benevolent,” “beneficent;” as e.g. in Matt. 20:15, “Is thine eye evil, because I am good?” 1 Pet. 2:18, “masters, … not only the good and gentle, but also the froward;” Titus 2:5; 1 Thess. 3:6; 1 Tim. 6:18; Rom. 12:21. In the remarkable contrast between the righteous man and the good man in Rom. 5:7 (see Dr. Gifford’s note on the passage, ‘Speaker’s Commentary,’ p. 123), the latter term appears distinctly intended in the conception of virtuousness to make especially prominent the idea of beneficence. Naturally, this sense attaches to it, when it describes an action done to another, as the opposite to the “working ill to one’s neighbour,” mentioned in Rom. 13:10; “good” in such a relation, denoting what is beneficent in effect, denotes what is also benevolent in intention (see 1 Thess. 5:15). Indeed, that the present clause points to works of beneficence” is made certain by that which is added, “and especially,” etc.; for our behaviour should be in no greater degree marked by general moral excellence in dealing with one class of men than in dealing with any others; though one particular branch of virtuous action may be called into varying degrees of activity in different relations of human intercourse. “Towards all men;” πρός, towards, as in 1 Thess. 5:14; Eph. 6:9. The spirit of universal philanthropy which the apostle inculcates here as in other passages, as e.g. 1 Thess. 5:15, in one which flows naturally from the proper influence upon the mind of the great facts stated in 1 Tim. 2:3–7, as also it was a spirit which in a most eminent degree animated the apostle’s own life. Witness that noble outburst of universal benevolence which we read of in Acts 26:29. Such an escape from bigotry and particularism was quite novel to the Gentile world, and scarcely heard of in the Jewish, though beautifully pointed forward to in the teaching of the Book of Jonah (see Introduction to the Book of Jonah, in ‘Speaker’s Commentary,’ vol. vi. p. 576). Especially unto them who are of the household of faith (μάλιστα δὲ πρὸς τοὺς οἰκείους τῆς πίστεως); but especially towards them that are of the household of faith. The adjective οἱκεῖος occurs in the New Testament only in St. Paul’s Epistles—twice besides here, namely, in Eph. 2:19, “fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household (οἰκεῖοι) of God;” and in 1 Tim. 5:8, “if any provideth not for his own, and specially his own household (οἰκείων).” In the last-cited passage, the adjective, denoting as it plainly is meant to do, a closer relation than “his own (ἰδίων)” must mean members of his household or family; and we can hardly err in supposing that in Eph. 2:19 likewise the phrase, οἰκεῖοι τοῦ Θεοῦ denotes those whom God has admitted into his family as children. So the word also signifies in the Septuagint of Isa. 3:5; 58:7; and Lev. 18:6, 12, 13. It is, therefore, an unnecessary dilution of its force here to render it, “those who belong to the faith,” though such a rendering of it might be justified if found in an ordinary Greek author. The meaning of τῆς πίστεως is illustrated by the strong personification used before by the apostle in ch. 3:23, 25, “before faith came;” “shut up for the faith which was yet to be revealed;” “now that faith is come.” The apostle surely here is not thinking of “the Christian doctrine,” but of that principle of believing acceptance of God’s promises which he has been insisting upon all through the Epistle. This principle, again personified, is here the patron or guardian of God’s people aforetime under a pedagogue: “of the household of faith,” not “of the faith.” The apostle is thinking of those who sympathized with the doctrine of justification by faith in Christ without legal observances; and very possibly is glancing in particular at the teachers under whose care the apostle had left the Galatian Churches. At first, we may believe, the Galatian Churchmen, in the fervour of their affection to the apostle himself, had been willing enough to help those teachers in every way. But when relaxing their hold upon the fundamental principles of the gospel, they had also declined in their affectionate maintenance of the teachers who upheld those doctrines. He now commends these, belonging to faith’s own household, to their especial regard (comp. Phil. 3:17). “Especially;” this qualification in an intensified form of the precept of universal beneficence, is the outcome of no cold calculation of relative duties, but of fervent love towards those who are truly brethren in Christ That to these an especial affection is due above all others is a sentiment commended and inculcated in almost all St. Paul’s Epistles; as it is also by St. Peter, as e.g. in 1 Pet. 1:22, etc.; and again by St. John. With all, “love of brethren (φιλαδελφία)” is a different sentiment from that sentiment of charity which is due to all fellow-men; that is, it is an intensified form of this latter, exalted into a peculiar tenderness of regard by the admixture of higher relations than those which antecedently connect true Christians with all members of the human family. Christ has himself (Matt. 25:31–46) taught his disciples that he deems a peculiar regard to be due from them to those “his brethren” who at that day shall be on his right hand; meaning, evidently, by “these my brethren,” not suffering men, women, or children as such, but sufferers peculiarly belonging to himself (comp. Matt. 10:42; 18:5, 6). Thus we see that, after all, there is a particularism properly characteristic of Christian sentiment; only, not such a particularism as a Gentile, and too often a Jew likewise, would have formulated thus: “Thou shalt love thine own people and hate the alien;” but one which may be formulated thus: “Thou shalt love every man, but especially thy fellow-believer in Christ.” The reader will, perhaps, scarcely need to be reminded of Keble’s exquisite piece on the Second Sunday after Trinity in the ‘Christian Year.’[6]

10. While we have opportunity. The metaphor is still pursued. Every season is not adapted to tillage and sowing. Active and prudent husbandmen will observe the proper season, and will not indolently allow it to pass unimproved. Since, therefore, God has set apart the whole of the present life for ploughing and sowing, let us avail ourselves of the season, lest, through our negligence, it may be taken out of our power. Beginning with liberality to ministers of the gospel, Paul now makes a wider application of his doctrine, and exhorts us to do good to all men, but recommends to our particular regard the household of faith, or believers, because they belong to the same family with ourselves. This similitude is intended to excite us to that kind of communication which ought to be maintained among the members of one family. There are duties which we owe to all men arising out of a common nature; but the tie of a more sacred relationship, established by God himself, binds us to believers.[7]

Ver. 10. As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men.—

Opportunity, man’s treasure:—If time be as “the grass,” fading and fleeting, opportunity is as “the flower of the grass,” more fading, as it is more beautiful and valuable. In the ordinary transactions and affairs of life, as well as in natural things, of how much importance is that juncture of concurrent circumstances which we style opportunity. Opportunity, even in natural things, when once lost, can never be recalled. The spark, that one single drop would have quenched in the outset, may, if neglected, spread fire around till it wraps a whole city in one wasting conflagration. The garment, spotted with the plague, that might have been destroyed with the least possible effort, may, if it lie unheeded and neglected, communicate the fearful infection, and the pestilence may spread its frightful ravages far and wide through a desolated nation. In the course of nature, God has been pleased to “furnish “opportunity” to every man, to awake the diligence and keep alive the watchfulness of His dependent creatures. If the husbandman passes by the season of spring, that precious season returns not again to him; and if he delay but a little space, watching the wind and waiting for the clouds, he shall not reap. And in the ordinary transactions of mankind one with another, how much depends upon seizing the passing and present opportunity! Many a man, by missing the “tide in the affairs of life,” has missed the highroad to fame and fortune, and whatever this world could give to make him illustrious and distinguished. How many gray-headed and aged men look back upon the squandered opportunities of early life with bitter regret and unavailing sighs? They can now see where they turned down the wrong pathway, and where they missed the golden and precious season, which, had they employed it well, would have brought them to far different results. (Hugh Stowell, M.A.)

Universal beneficence the duty of Christians:—The law of Jesus Christ lays Christians under obligations to the whole human race. This is at once its triumph and its difficulty: its triumph as it stands contrasted with moral codes of narrower scope, whether national or religious; its difficulty, when we look upon it as having to be put in practice. “While we have time, let us do good unto all men.” The race which our Lord and Redeemer has honoured by taking its nature upon Him appeals to the thought and energies of all the redeemed. Whether civilized or barbarous, whether European or African, whether Christian or pagan, man, as man, has claims upon the servants of Christ; it is their business and their privilege to do him any good they can: the highest good, before all else—the communication of the True Faith, the bringing him into living contact with the Divine Redeemer, His Person, His Cross, His Spirit, His Word, His Sacraments; and then lesser forms of good, all that we commonly mean by civilization and useful knowledge—alms, advice, medicine, service, means of education, helps to material happiness and progress, as opportunities for doing so may present themselves. (Canon Liddon.)

Benevolence never kills:—Said a speaker at a missionary meeting: I have often heard of congregations starving through niggardliness, but never of one laid on its deathbed through benevolence. If I could find one that had thus suffered by overgiving, I would make a pilgrimage to that church, and pronounce over it this requiem, “Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord.”

The beauty of beneficence:—An Eastern legend tells us how Abraham wore round his neck a jewel whose light healed the sick and raised up those who were bowed down, and that when he died it was placed amongst the stars. You may see it now among the stars in all holy lives; but, more than that, if such be your desire, your Saviour will grant it to you also, to wear it. No diamond can shine so gloriously on the white neck of beauty, no order blaze so worthily on the breast of noble manhood. It becomes even the sceptred monarch better than his crown. It is the diamond of pure sympathy with your fellow-men. In one word, it is charity. Usually she is painted as nursing young children, and giving dolls to paupers, but with a far greater insight Giotto represents her as a fair matron with her eyes uplifted, trampling on bags of gold, while coming out of heaven an angel from the Lord Christ gives her a human heart. Yes, it is the human heart by which we live—the heart at leisure with itself to soothe and sympathize; the heart which can be as hard as adamant against vice and corruption, but as tender as a mother towards all that suffers and can be healed. (Archdeacon Farrar).

Opportunity:—A sculptor once showed a visitor his studio. It was full of gods. One was very curious. The face was concealed by being covered with hair, and there were wings to each foot. “What is its name?” asked the spectator. “Opportunity,” was the reply. “Why is his face hidden?” “Because men seldom know him when he comes to them.” “Why has he wings upon his feet?” “Because he is soon gone, and once gone he cannot be overtaken.”

Transient nature of opportunity:—Opportunity is like a favouring breeze springing up around a sailing-vessel. If the sails be all set, the ship is wafted onwards to its port; if the sailors are asleep or ashore, the breeze may die again, and when they would go on they cannot: their vessel stands as idle as a painted ship upon a painted ocean. (Union Magazine.) Opportunity is like a strip of sand which stretches around a seaside cove. The greedy tide is lapping up the sand. The narrow strip will quickly become impassable; and then how sad the fate of the thoughtless children who are now playing and gathering shells and seaweed inside the cove! (Ibid.)

Seizing opportunities:—Coming once down the Ohio River when the water was low, we saw just before us several small boats aground on a sandbar. We knew the channel was where they were not, and, shaping our course accordingly, we went safely by. They saw our intention; and, taking advantage of the light swell we created in passing them, the nearest ones crowded on all steam, and were lifted off the bar. Now, when in life’s stream you are stranded on some bar of temptation, no matter what it is that makes a swell, if it is only an inch under your keel, put on all steam, and swing off into the current. (H. W. Beecher.)

Prepare for opportunities:—Once upon a time, a wild boar of a jungle was whetting his tusks against the trunk of a tree. A fox passing by, asked him why he did this, seeing that neither hunter nor hound was near. “True,” said the boar, “but when danger does arise, I shall have something else to do than to sharpen my weapons!”

The more limited sphere of beneficence:—Humanitarian aspirations, as they are termed, are exhilarating, especially to noble natures: but we cannot all of us do everything. And there is some danger in dreaming of doing it; the danger of ending by doing nothing, on the ground that to do everything is plainly impossible. Schemes which embrace the human race are apt to fade away into vague unattainable outlines, instead of leading to practical and specific results. And, therefore, while our duties towards humanity at large are to be kept in view, as the real measure of our obligation, and as a valuable incentive to generous efforts, our actual enterprises are necessarily restricted to this or that portion of the great human family, which, for us, and for the time being, represents the whole. Hence it is that St. Paul adds to his general exhortation to do good unto all men a specific limitation, “especially unto them that are of the household of faith.” The household of faith! There is no doubt as to the sense of the expression. As the whole human race is one vast family banded together by the indestructable tie of blood, so within this family the possession of a common faith creates another and a selected household, whose members are bound to each other by a yet closer and more sacred bond. Of the natural human family Adam is the departed head and father: the family of faith is grouped around the Second Adam, Jesus Christ, as its ever-living and present Parent. To all members of this family He has given a new and common nature; He has clothed each and all in that sacred Manhood which, after God, “is created in righteousness and true holiness,” whether that precious gift have been forfeited or not. By faith each member of the family understands his relationship, first to the common life-giving Parent, and next to those who are his brethren in virtue of this new and sacred tie. (Canon Liddon.)

Doing good in trifles:—There is a story of a man living on the borders of an African desert, who carried daily a pitcher of cold water to the dusty thoroughfare, and left it for any thirsty traveller who might pass that way.

Doing good by a child:—“Children, I want each of you to bring a new scholar to the school with you next Sunday,” said the superintendent of a Sunday-school to his scholars one day. “I can’t get any new scholars,” said several of the children to themselves. “I’ll try what I can do,” was the whispered response of a few others. One of the latter class went home to his father, and said, “Father, will you go to the Sunday-school with me?” “I can’t read, my son,” replied the father, with a look of shame. “Our teachers will teach you,” answered the boy, with respect and feeling in his tones. “Well, I’ll go,” said the father. He went, learned to read, sought and found the Saviour, and at length became a colporteur. Years passed on, and that man had established four hundred Sunday-schools, into which thirty-five thousand children were gathered! Thus you see what trying did. That boy’s effort was like a tiny rill, which soon swells into a brook, and at length becomes a river. His efforts, by God’s grace, saved his father, and his father, being saved, led thirty-five thousand children to the Sunday-school.

Doing good by little means:—See that well on the mountain-side—a small, rude, rocky cup full of crystal water, and that tiny rill flowing through a breach in its brim. The vessel is so diminutive that it could not contain a supply of water for a single family in a single day. But, ever getting through secret channels, and ever giving by an open overflow, day and night, summer and winter, from year to year, it discharges in the aggregate a volume to which its own capacity bears no appreciable proportion. The flow from that diminutive cup might, in a drought or war, become life to all the inhabitants of a city. It is thus that a Christian, if he is full of mercy and good fruits, is a greater blessing to the world than either himself or his neighbours deem. Let no disciple of Christ either think himself excused, or permit himself to be discouraged from doing good, because his talents and opportunities are few. Your capacity is small, it is true, but if you are in Christ it is the capacity of a well. Although it does not contain much at any moment, so as to attract attention to you for your gifts, it will give forth a great deal in a lifetime, and many will be refreshed. (W. Arnot, M.A.)

The Christian’s duty:—Now let us consider—1. The solemn exhortation or advice given here by the apostle, that is, “Let us do good.” Notwithstanding all the sin and misery that are to be found in the world, yet the world would not be so bad after all, were it not for our own selves. That is, it is we, through our conceit, pride, and unfriendly behaviour to one another, that really constitute and render this world so unpleasant as it is! And if you admit the truth of this statement, then it is obvious that it is the duty of all of us, as true Christians, to endeavour to reform ourselves in the first place, and then try to spread this reformation amongst others by our own good examples. There are some people to be found who will only do good at times, and upon some extraordinary occasions, and then only when they are really ashamed to withhold their hands. 2. The extent of this duty, “Unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith!” You may recollect that when Joseph made himself known unto his brethren in Egypt, and entertained them at a sumptuous dinner, that “Benjamin’s mess was five times as much as any of the others;” and do you recollect the reason of that strange proceeding of his? I will tell you, Joseph and Benjamin were the only sons of Rachel by Jacob, their father, and so they were two brothers by the same father and the same mother, and therefore were more nearly allied to one another than all the rest. And we read that when Joseph first saw his brother Benjamin, “his bowels did yearn upon him, and he sought where to weep.” And so I would have you, my brethren, to follow Joseph’s good example, if ever you shall meet with any member of “the household of faith,” “who in this transitory life is in trouble, sorrow, need, sickness, or any other adversity”; then give him more readily and more abundantly than to any one else, for he is more nearly related to you by the Spirit, if not by the flesh, for he is a member of the same Catholic Church as yourself. 3. The time that we are to attend to this most important duty—“As we have an opportunity,” or, “whilst we have the opportunity of this life and as occasions present themselves.” No one offers a word of advice, nor an alms, nor a dose of physic, nor anything else to a dead man. Oh, no! for the time for these things and the like is gone by for ever with regard to him. And so I would have you to bear in mind that it is not after a poor fellow-creature has been left to starve to death with cold and hunger; that it is not after a long “hope deferred” had broken his tender heart in twain, and caused it to cease to beat for ever, that you are to take pity and compassion upon him. Oh, no! but you should do so now while you have him with you, while you can relieve him, and while he can appreciate your good attention, your sympathy and kindness. Some are in the habit of putting poor people off indefinitely when they ask assistance, though perhaps the favour they ask for will be hardly worth receiving, and so the time is lost when it can be of any value to the recipient. For my own part, if I do not get a favour when I beg for it and when I want it, I would not care for it, if the opportunity, or “the time of need” is gone. (H. H. Davies, M.A.)

The Church household an especial scene of kind deeds:—Every one entering a Church has a right to feel that he is going into a higher atmosphere than that in which he has been accustomed to move. Every one has a right to feel that when he goes into the Church of Christ he goes into an association, a brotherhood, where the principle of gentleness and kindness is carried on to a higher degree than it is outside the Church. I know that it is not so. I know that the Church is keyed, often, very low in the matter of sympathy. I know that too frequently persons who go into the Church are like those who go at night to a hotel. Each lodger has his own room, and calls for what he himself needs, and does not feel bound to take care of any of the other lodgers. And a Church, frequently, is nothing but a spiritual boarding-house, where the members are not acquainted with each other, and where there is but very little sympathy. Now, every Church should be under the inspiration of such large sympathy and benevolence as to make every one of its members the object of kindly thought and feeling. There should be a public sentiment and an atmosphere of brotherhood in every Church. (H. W. Beecher.)

Kind deeds to go beyond the Church:—And here I may say, in carrying out this work, beware, while you do not neglect home, that you do not confine the disclosure of yourself to your own household. It is right for a bird to make herself a nest, and put the finest moss and softest feathers in that nest, and it is right that she should sit upon it. It is right that she should have but one chamber—for birds never build for more than themselves and their own. But they are only bird, and do not know any better. It is for us to build a broad nest. To build it so that nobody can get into it but ourselves, to line it with our own prosperity, and so selfishly fill it with everything that is sweet and soft—that is not right. I think that a man’s house ought to be a magazine of kindness. Its windows ought to send out light. I like, when I go by a house at night, to see the window-shutters open, so that the light shines forth from inside. A person says, “I will put this clump of flowers under the parlour window.” No, no; put them by the gate. A thousand will see them there, where one would see them in that other place. A person says, “I will put this plant where nobody can reach it.” Well, do; but put two close to the fence, where they can be reached. I like to see little hands go through the pickets and pluck off flowers. And if you say, “That is stealing,” then let it be understood through all the neighbourhood that it is not stealing. There are some who seem to have such a sense of property that if they had a hundred magnolia trees in full blossom on their premises, they would want the wind to blow from the north, and south, and east, and west, so that all the fragrance would come into their own house; whereas the true spirit would be a desire that a thousand others should be blessed by these bounties as well as themselves. Make your dwelling beautiful; but not for your own eyes alone. Fill it sumptuously, if you have the grace to rightly use that sumptuosity Let the feet of the poor step on your plushy carpet. Let their eyes behold the rich furniture of your apartments. Would it make their home less to them? Not necessarily. If you take a child by the hand—you, whose name is great in the town; you, who tower up in power above all your neighbours; if you lay your hand on his head, and call him “Sonny;” if you bring him into your house; if you go to the cupboard and take out the unfamiliar cake, or what not, that children so much like (for the senses must be appealed to in childhood before the spirit can be reached; and by feeding the mouth of a child you come to his affections and feelings); if you show him your rooms, and give him something in his pocket to carry home and show his aunt or sister, do you suppose that child ever thinks you are stuck up, or looks on you with an unkindly eye? When he comes into the neighbourhood again, and your house dawns upon him, he remembers, the moment he sees it, how happy you made him there. And that house of yours can be made to bless generation after generation. (Ibid.)

Doing good according to opportunity:—

  1. There is good which Christians can do. This is a common thing to notice, and you may think it is not likely to be overlooked. Perhaps not, as far as the eyes are concerned, but certainly liable to be overlooked so far as the heart and the hand are concerned. To do good (as we all should say if we were asked to define it), is to secure by our own efforts the welfare of others. The doing good to human nature, as it is made up of body and spirit, is required of us by our God, but beside this we are all required to do good to others in all the variety of condition in which they are found. Hence we have such particular directions as, to doing good to them that hate us, giving meat and drink and raiment to the poor, visiting the sick and the prisoner, the widow and the fatherless, holding forth the word of life, and distributing to the necessity of saints. What a wide and life-long service do these two words cover, “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good.
  2. To do good there must be both intention and exertion, aim and effort. Benefits sometimes accrue to men from their fellow-men without any intention or effort on the part of those who are the channels of good; but being the channel of good or the occasion of doing good, and the willing and active agent, are widely different things. It is one thing to lose a piece of money, which is picked up by a beggar, and by which he supplies his wants, and another thing to give that beggar money for the purchase of food. The man is fed in both cases, but the ministering is only in the one case. It is one thing to utter words at random by which bystanders are instructed, and another thing to endeavour, as in the case of our devoted Sabbath school and ragged school teachers, steadily and perseveringly to impart instruction to the ignorant. The difference here is as broad and as clear and as palpable as that between the stone head of a fountain through which the water flows, and from which you drink, and the loving hand which brings you a cup of water that has been intentionally, thoughtfully, and sympathetically filled for you at that fountain. Doing good partially, if self-originated and self-willed, is easy; but to do good fully we must overcome much within ourselves. Then we must do it as servants—not when and as we like, but when and as the great Master bids us. Moreover, real good is not done except by labour of some sort. In the sweat of the brow we not only eat bread, but we cast bread on the waters.

III. The kind of good done and the amount must both be governed by what Paul here calls “opportunity.” Circumstances being suitable for a particular ministration, we must minister; and circumstances fix the time and place, and the means, and the powers of the individual. They say to him, Thou art the man to do this thing here, and to do this thing now. “Opportunity” is that season in which we can minister to the benefit of others. Our opportunities test us. You will always see that a man is just what he is to his opportunities. You will find this in every walk of life. Opportunities test us Christians. Some opportunities are rare, others are common; some are fleeting, others abide. “The poor,” said Jesus, “are always with you, and whensoever ye will ye may do them good;” here is the permanent, abiding opportunity. “But Me ye have not always;” here is the fleeting, passing opportunity. Doing good, dear brethren, if men be faithful to their trust, never can be monotonous. (S. Martin.)

On doing good:—

  1. Illustrate the duty in the text. 1. The duty inculcated is goodness. Now this necessarily supposes that we are renewed in our mind. In our natural state, we cannot do good. We must first be made partakers of Divine goodness before we can diffuse it abroad. The Christian may do good—(1) By the exhibition of a pious example. Thus to be monitors to those around. (2) By imparting spiritual instruction. (3) By our prayers and supplications (See 1 Tim. 2:1). (4) By imparting of our substance to the poor and necessitous. 2. The extent of the goodness we are to exercise—“To all men.” 3. The seasonableness and constancy of our goodness—“As we have opportunity.” 4. The preference appointed—“Especially to those who are of the household of faith.”
  2. Enforce the duty is the text. 1. The commands of God require it. “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself,” &c. (Psa. 37:3; 1 Tim. 6:18). 2. Our resemblance to God requires it. If we are His spiritual offspring, then we must be followers of God as dear children. 3. The example of Christ requires it. “He went about doing good.” 4. The Spirit of God within us requires it. “The fruit of the Spirit is … goodness.” 5. Our own happiness requires it. It enlarges the mind, expands the heart, elevates to the most heavenly dignities and enjoyments. 6. Our acquittal at the last day requires it (Matt. 25:34, &c.). Application: 1. Does not the subject condemn most of the professed disciples of Christ? How few have their hearts set upon doing good! How few do all the good they can! 2. Let it lead us to a closer acquaintance with the Lord’s will, and provoke us to love and good works. 3. A religion without goodness is not of God, and shall not receive a reward at the last day. (J. Burns, D.D.)

The witness to the ennobling principle:—Life is a work. The best efforts of the human spirit spring from the energy of an artist toiling at himself. And just as Van Eyck, or Memling, or Dürer, each possessed “the sacred science of colour,” each noted faithfully the teachings of experience, each rose into some vision of a better country, drew down the results of that vision to the practical purposes of daily life; and neither neglected the claims of the present nor forgot the solemn certainties of another world; so the human spirit, alive to its responsibility, and therefore to the need of sorrowful toil here, without the reminding of the preacher, hears voices like passing bells, now loud, now dying; sounds tossed up in sorrowing cadence, surging and solemn, mystical and threatening, like the roll of the Atlantic in the caves of Cornwall; or tender and saddening, like the water of the spreading surf on the sands of the Adrian Sea; and the voices, whether loud or soft, whether threatening or tender, are chanting an unchanging story: “Death is coming, diligence and fortitude; life is passing, use it while you may.” Listening to these the human spirit works in the vision, with the sense of eternity; unites the ideal and the practical, strives to make idealism into realised result, does not merely travel a destitute journey, nor work a work fruitless to others as well as self, but exercises in the highest of all subjects, with the possibility of the most lasting results, exercises an artist’s powers. I. Let us note swiftly some of the characteristic features of the self-sacrificing temper, the productive principle of a noble life. 1. First we may note what is negative. In a really self-sacrificing temper there is the absence of that miserable taint and bane of rich and gifted natures which the Greeks would describe as a withering ὕβρις—an insolent scorn. The self sacrificing spirit, believe me, will not lose faith in human nature; will learn for itself simple-hearted sincerity; will not demand too much from others; will “possess” itself “in patience,” and thus lay a stern arrest upon the too natural encroachments of ὕβρις—of insolent scorn. 2. Another mark of a self-sacrificing temper is a sincere, a supernatural, a gentle yet chastened sorrow. “Sorrow!” you say; “why, that is nothing so strikingly exceptional.” A short experience of the most shallow observer says “there is plenty of sorrow! It requires no special gaze on eternity, it demands no yearning desire for a higher life, to find one’s self plunged in the mystery of sorrow.” Quite so; but stay. There are violets and violets. The violet of the bleak hedge-side on the edge of the windy common, cramped with the crisping frost and shrivelled by the withering storm, is generically the same, but in individual fact how different from those rich masses of unfathomable colour which carpet the ruined pavement of Hadrian’s Villa. So there is sorrow and sorrow. There is the sorrow of a broken life, the sorrow of a greedy, unsatisfied desire, the sorrow of a degraded moral purpose, and the sorrow of a brave and tender soul, which sees the beauty of the ideal and the sadness of partial failure, and yet, though sorrowing, does not faint or grow weary; which realizes the possibility of human progress, and is heartstricken at the spectacle of men with gifts of noble nature living for the changeful and passing, when they might live for what can never die. This sorrow is an outcome of the self-sacrificing temper. Is it yours? Are you sorry when wrong is done? sorry at the record of wretchedness and the chronicle of crime; sorry at lives with possibilities of glory falling into the depths, missing the standard, the example of Christ? Is yours such sorrow as stimulates you to read and obey the secret of this unearthly loveliness? Is your soul’s life touched into activity by the tragedy of human misery and the tragedy of the cross? Blessed are ye if it be so. Then it is the principal anxiety of your life to enrich the lives of others. This is the witness of self-sacrifice. 3. And a third feature of such a temper is a sunny earnestness. What is earnestness? It is not gloom, it is not grim determination, it is not dogged persistence, it is not revolting narrowness, or wearying one-sidedness, or stupid and tormenting fanaticism. What is earnestness? Earnestness is that temper of mind, that habit of thought which comes of taking, of habitually taking, the truths of eternity as realities, as in fact they are. II. Let us ask, then, what ground can be shown for cultivating a spirit of self-sacrifice? 1. My brothers, first, unquestionably first, a loving gratitude. Christ died for you. If you have a grain of gratitude in you for the highest blessings, act by grace towards Him in the spirit in which He has acted towards you. 2. And another ground is a wise and gracious estimate of the dignity of man. Man is an animal; yes, but man is also a spirit; mysterious instincts within him—despite the passing crotchets of sciolists and dreamers—witness to him his immortality. III. And now for the result. Self-sacrifice is the ennobling principle. It ennobles the world; it fertilizes the soul. How? For all man it leaves behind rich memories and great examples; it shows thus what man can, and therefore what man ought, to do, and encourages to use the strength God gives to do it. And again, it enriches the individual soul. It is strange, yet it is true, that to give in love increases the store of love within us; strange, but true, that self-love weakens the moral fibre and impoverishes life; strange, but true, that self-sacrifice stores moral treasures, and produces moral power. IV. “While we have time let us do good.” What is life then but a severe probation to test the metal of our souls, and prove their value? “While we have time let us do good.” Nay, what is life then but a careful education, wherein stern circumstances and trials—the calls of duty, and the sharp assaults of sorrow combine, or may combine with inward principle, to train the soul, to “try us and turn us forth sufficiently impressed.” “While we have time.” Nay, what is life but a great opportunity, though an opportunity not perhaps to leave behind the rich results of patient and daring investigation, or the astounding stores of accumulated knowledge, yet something better? While you have time! The days are travelling on, the night is coming, let us bestir ourselves to assist in the triumph of goodness, let us act in self-sacrifice, and so let us advance—oh! blessed opportunity—advance the kingdom of Christ. (Canon Knox-Little.)

Christian beneficence:—

  1. The principle of Christian beneficence. The excellence of any action in the sight of a heart-searching and holy God, depends entirely on the motive from whence it proceeds, and on the spirit with which it is performed. Christian beneficence is founded in the noblest of principles—love to our God and Redeemer.
  2. The objects of Christian beneficence. True believers are united to each other by the most sacred and indissoluble bonds.

III. The qualities of Christian beneficence. 1. Active in its nature. 2. Constant and unwearied in its operations.

  1. The value of Christian beneficence. (John Hunter, D.D.)

Doing good:—

  1. The nature. 1. Preserving goodness. 2. Uniting goodness. 3. Communicating goodness.
  2. The rules. We must do good—1. With that which is our own (1 Chron. 21:24). 2. With cheerfulness and alacrity (2 Cor. 9.). 3. So that we do not disable ourselves from doing good (Psa. 90:14; 112:5; 2 Cor. 3; 8:13).

III. The reasons. 1. From the grounds of love and beneficence, which are in all men. 2. From the example of God Himself (Matt. 5:44, 45). 3. The testimony of Christ (Acts 20:35). (R. Cudworth.)

  1. God made all things to do good.
  2. Christ saves men in order that they may do good.

III. Do good because—1. God commands it. 2. It will overcome evil. 3. It will make you happy. 4. It will make others happy. 5. Others will then do good to us. (W. Newton.)

The occasion for the injunction:—The admonition is thrown into a general form, but it has evidently a special application in the apostle’s own mind (see 1 Cor. 16:1). He had solicited their alms for the suffering brethren of Judaea. The messenger who had brought him word of the spread of Judaism among the Galatians had also, I suppose, reported unfavourably of their liberality. They had not responded heartily to the appeal. He reproves them in consequence for their backwardness; but he wishes to give them more time, and therefore refrains from prejudging the case. (Bp. Lightfoot.)

Beneficence:—Give what you have. To some it may be better than you dare to think. (Longfellow.) There may be a furlough from our customary work; there can be none from doing good. There may be change of scene and place and fellowship; there must be none in the spirit of self-sacrificing beneficence. (A. L. Stone.)

The danger of selfishness:—Let us proportion our alms to our ability, lest we provoke God to proportion His blessings to our alms. (Bp. Beveridge.)

Seizing opportunities:—A lady once writing to a young man in the navy, who was almost a stranger, thought, “Shall I close this as anybody would, or shall I say a word for my Master?” and lifting up her heart for a moment, she wrote, telling him that his constant change of scene and place was an apt illustration of the word, “Here we have no continuing city,” and asked if he could say, “I seek one to come.” Trembling she folded it, and sent it off. Back came the answer: “Thank you so much for those kind words. I am an orphan, and no one has spoken to me like that since my mother died, long years ago.” The arrow, shot at a venture, hit home, and the young man shortly afterward rejoiced in the fulness of the gospel of peace. How often do we, as Christians, close a letter to those we know have no hope “as anybody would,” when we might say a word for Jesus! Shall we not embrace each opportunity in the future?

Do good to all men:—Some years ago a society was formed in London which called itself the “Titus Society.” It took its name from Titus, the Roman Emperor, who counted a day lost in which he had not done some act for the good of others. The members of this society bound themselves to act on this benevolent principle. In this they did well; but their obligation lay back of their pledge, inasmuch as the voice of God in Scripture and in the love He pours into every regenerate heart is constantly saying, “Do good! Do good!” There is no need of looking far to find the opportunity, since sorrow, suffering, ignorance, poverty, and sin are everywhere. No one who walks the streets with his eyes open can fail to find some one to whom a kind word, a pleasant smile, a small gift, a few words of instruction or of exhortation, or even a cordial grasp of the hand, would be a benediction. To encourage such effort the God of love has ordained that the satisfaction of doing good is greater than that of receiving a favour. In the laws of the kingdom of Christ, is it not written that “it is more blessed to give than to receive?”

American. Lost opportunities:—A poor fellow in connection with a Liverpool mission lay dying the other day, and, as his mother stood by his side, he said, “Mother, I shall soon be with Christ, but it makes me miserable to think that I have never done aught for Him.” Yes, it will make you miserable when you come to die, if you have done nothing for Christ. I charge you to go away and consecrate yourselves to this work. Listen to the cries of the heathen world—“What must we do to be saved?”[8]

The Expansion of the Exhortation (6:10)

So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all men, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith. Notice Paul relates this verse to what he has written, So then. This is the conclusion. He builds on the exhortation that we are to persevere in our sowing, in verse 9, ‘Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we shall reap.’ Therefore, let us sow while there is opportunity. This exhortation reminds us of the exhortations of the Saviour, ‘Walk while it is day’ (John 11:9); ‘Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes, and look on the fields, that they are white for harvest’ (John 4:35); ‘Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest’ (Matt. 9:38). Today is a time of work and the apostle reminds us to seize the opportunity. Seize the opportunity and do not grow weary; boldly plunge into the labour.

Furthermore he expands from support for the ministry to service in the body of Christ: Do good to all men, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith. Yes, you are to care for your ministers, but you are to do much more. You are to direct your charity, your giving of yourself, as well as your service, to those in the church. The phrase household of the faith refers to those who are marked out by the faith of the Bible; those in the local congregation who profess that faith. We are to seek to do good to all men, but our first responsibility is to our brothers and sisters in the church. Paul does not mean that we are to focus our attention exclusively on our own congregation; yet we begin in our congregation, next sister congregations in the presbytery and denomination, and then to all evangelical Christians. Neither does he rule out helping those in the world. But our first priority is our brother and sister in the Church.[9]

6:10 “So then, while we have opportunity” Believers must continue to watch for opportunities to live out their faith in Christ (cf. Col. 4:2–6).

© “let us do good” This is a PRESENT MIDDLE (deponent) SUBJUNCTIVE. Paul states with conviction that our standing with God does not come by human effort, but he is equally emphatic that once we know God we should live a life of strenuous service. These twin truths are found in Eph. 2:8–9, 10. We are not saved by good works, but we are most definitely saved unto good works.

© “to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith” Notice that our love is meant for all people for there is always a view toward evangelism in all of our actions (cf. Matt. 28:19–20; 1 Cor. 9:19–23; 1 Pet. 3:15). However, our primary focus is on members of the family of God. This is not denominationally focused for we are to take a person at his word that he has trusted in Christ. Once he has made that confession we are to serve him as Christ served us.[10]

10. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everybody.… Here again the negative—“Do not grow weary,” “Do not give up”—is followed by the positive, “Let us do good.” Perseverance in good works as a product of grace is what Paul is constantly urging (3:3; 5:7, 18, 25; 6:2). God preserves his people by means of their perseverance. The power to persevere is from him; the responsibility is theirs. Accordingly, as long as—and since—we have opportunity, let us at each and every occasion that presents itself do good to everybody. The believer has been placed on this earth for a purpose. The best way to prepare for Christ’s second coming is to use to the full every opportunity of rendering service. Moreover, this service should be rendered to everybody regardless of race, nationality, class, religion, sex, or anything else. As our lord’s active love overleaped boundaries (Luke 9:54, 55; 10:25–37; 17:11–19; John 4:42; 1 Tim. 4:10), so should ours. This, however, does not mean that there is no sphere of special concern. This is altogether to be expected. Parents, for example, have a duty toward their neighbors. Nevertheless, their first obligation is toward their own children. So also here. Paul says: and especially to those who are of the household of the faith. In this respect, too, we should imitate our heavenly Father, “who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe.” For explanation see N.T.C. on 1 Tim. 4:10. Note the term, full of comfort, “the household of the faith.” All believers constitute one family, “the Father’s Family” (see N.T.C. on Eph. 3:14, 15). See also 1 Cor. 3:9; Eph. 2:19; 1 Tim. 3:15; and let us not forget Ps. 133. By the term “the household of the faith” is meant those who share the gospel. With respect to material aid, is it not altogether probable that it was exactly this “household of the faith” that was most direly in need of such assistance?[11]

6:10. The believer is to do good to both believers and unbelievers with believers having priority. Christians in that era suffered great economic hardship as a result of rejection and persecution. With no government assistance programs, they had no one else to help but other believers. Though Christians should be willing to help anyone in need, caring for fellow believers is still a priority.[12]

[1] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1983). Galatians (pp. 191–192). Chicago: Moody Press.

[2] Rapa, R. K. (2008). Galatians. In T. Longman III &. Garland, David E. (Ed.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Romans–Galatians (Revised Edition) (Vol. 11, p. 635). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[3] Fung, R. Y. K. (1988). The Epistle to the Galatians (pp. 297–299). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

[4] deSilva, D. A. (2018). The Letter to the Galatians. (N. B. Stonehouse, F. F. Bruce, G. D. Fee, & J. B. Green, Eds.) (pp. 496–499). Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

[5] Barnes, P. (2006). A Study Commentary on Galatians (pp. 302–303). Darlington, England; Webster, New York: Evangelical Press.

[6] Spence-Jones, H. D. M. (Ed.). (1909). Galatians (pp. 304–305). London; New York: Funk & Wagnalls Company.

[7] Calvin, J., & Pringle, W. (2010). Commentaries on the Epistles of Paul to the Galatians and Ephesians (pp. 180–181). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

[8] Exell, J. S. (n.d.). The Biblical Illustrator: Galatians (pp. 520–527). New York; Chicago; Toronto; London; Edinburgh: Fleming H. Revell Company.

[9] Pipa, J. A., Jr. (2010). Galatians: God’s Proclamation of Liberty (pp. 237–238). Ross-shire, Scotland: Christian Focus Publications.

[10] Utley, R. J. (1997). Paul’s First Letters: Galatians and I & II Thessalonians (Vol. Volume 11, p. 66). Marshall, TX: Bible Lessons International.

[11] Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953–2001). Exposition of Galatians (Vol. 8, pp. 238–239). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

[12] Anders, M. (1999). Galatians-Colossians (Vol. 8, p. 80). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.