Welsh Theologian, Protestant Minister and Medical Doctor
Martyn Lloyd-Jones, fully David Martyn Lloyd Jones
Welsh Theologian, Protestant Minister and Medical Doctor
It is very foolish to ignore the past. The man who does ignore it, and assumes that our problems are quite new, and that therefore the past has nothing at all to teach us, is a man who is not only grossly ignorant of the Scriptures, he is equally ignorant of some of the greatest lessons even in secular history.
The tragedy is that many of us are living... desperate Christian life. Sunday comes and we get some strength, and then we lose some on Monday; a good deal is gone by Tuesday and we wonder whether we have anything left. On Wednesday it has all gone and then we exist. Or perhaps refreshment comes in some other way, some meeting we attend, some friends we meet...Now that is the old order of things, that is not the new. So our Lord goes on to put it like this: 'Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life' (verses 13-14). He puts a well within us. We are not always drawing from somewhere outside. The well, the spring, goes on springing up from within into everlasting life.
Let us then lay this down as a principle. We must never for a second worry about anything that cannot be affected or changed by us. It is a waste of energy?You can sit down and be miserable and you can go round and round in circles of regret for the rest of your life but it will make no difference to what you have done.
The ultimate test of our spirituality is the measure of our amazement at the grace of God.
Faith is a refusal to panic.
Love is not just a sentiment. Love is a great controlling passion and it always expresses itself in terms of obedience.
The very God whom we have offended has Himself provided the way whereby the offence has been dealt with. His anger, His wrath against sin and the sinner, has been satisfied, appeased and He therefore can now thus reconcile man unto Himself.
Fasting, if we conceive of it truly, must not... be confined to the question of food and drink; fasting should really be made to include abstinence from anything which is legitimate in and of itself for the sake of some special spiritual purpose. There are many bodily functions which are right and normal and perfectly legitimate, but which for special peculiar reasons in certain circumstances should be controlled. That is fasting.
Matters in the Kingdom but the grace of God? God has a different way of looking at things. He does not see as men do; He does not compute as they do; it is all grace from beginning to end? stop looking at what you have not done and the years you have missed and realize that in His kingdom it is His grace alone that matters.
There are other people who are prepared to argue and discuss and even change their opinion, but they do not do anything about it. The evangelical, however, is a man who acts on his convictions. There would never have been Protestantism if this were not true.
Give yourself to it,[the call to prayer] yield to it; and you will find not only that you have not been wasting time with respect to the matter with which you are dealing but that actually it has helped you greatly in that respect. You will experience an ease and a facility in understanding what you were reading, in thinking, in ordering matter for a sermon, in writing, in everything which is quite astonishing. Such a call to prayer must never be regarded as a distraction; always respond to it immediately and thank God if it happens to you frequently.
Meekness does not mean indolence.
There is all the difference in the world between preaching merely from human understanding and energy, and preaching in the conscious smile of God.
God permits war in order that men may bear the consequences of their sins as punishment. How clearly this is shown time and time again in the story of the children of Israel!
Monasticism is really based on the idea that if you leave people, you leave the spirit of the world. But you do not. You can leave the world in a physical sense, you can leave the crowd and the people; but there in your lonely cell the spirit of the world may still be with you.
They [the revived] begin to get a concern for the members of their own family - husband, wife, father, mother, children, brother, sister - who do not know that they are outside. They tell them about it; they feel they must. There is a constraint that is driving them. They talk about it to people, to friends and to everybody, and they begin to pray for them. Prayer is always a great feature of every revival, great prayer meetings, intercession hour after hour. They pray for these people by name and they plead, and they will not let God go, as it were.
Have you realized that most of your unhappiness in life is due to the fact that you are listening to yourself instead of talking to yourself? Take those thoughts that come to you the moment you wake up in the morning. You have not originated them, but they start talking to you, they bring back the problems of yesterday, etc. Somebody is talking. Who is talking? Your self is talking to you. Now this man?s treatment was this; instead of allowing this self to talk to him, he starts talking to himself. ?Why art thou cast down, O my soul?? he asks. His soul had been depressing him, crushing him. So he stands up and says: ?Self, listen for a moment, I will speak to you.?? The main art in the matter of spiritual living is to know how to handle yourself. You have to take yourself in hand, you have to address yourself, preach to yourself, question yourself. You must say to your soul: ?Why art thou cast down?? what business have you to be disquieted? You must turn on yourself, upbraid yourself, condemn yourself, exhort yourself, and say to yourself: ?Hope thou in God?? instead of muttering in this depressed, unhappy way. And then you must go on to remind yourself of God, Who God is, and what God is and what God has done, and what God has pledged Himself to do. Then having done that, end on this great note: defy yourself, and defy other people, and defy the devil and the whole world, and say with this man: ?I shall yet praise Him for the help of His countenance, who is also the health of my countenance and my God.?
People seem to think that the masses are outside the Christian church because our evangelistic methods are not what they ought to be. That is not the answer. People are outside the church because looking at us they say, "What is the point of being Christians? - look at them!" They are judging Christ by you and me. And you cannot stop them and you cannot blame them.
This actual question of 'Why does God allow war?' is not considered or raised as such in the Bible at all.
Holiness is not something we are called upon to do in order that we may become something; it is something we are to do because of what we already are.
Praise God for the fact that you are what you are, and that you are in the Kingdom.
We accept what Scripture teaches as far as our doctrine is concerned; but when it comes to practice, we very often fail to take the Scriptures as our only guide. ... Dare I give an obvious illustration? The question of women preaching, and being ordained to the full ministry.
How easy it is to read the Scriptures and give a kind of nominal assent to the truth and yet never to appropriate what it tells us!
Preaching is theology coming through a man who is on fire. A true understanding and experience of the Truth must lead to this... A man who can speak about these things dispassionately has no right whatsoever to be in a pulpit; and should never be allowed to enter one.
We must think of suffering in a new way, we must face everything in a new way. And the way in which we face it all is by reminding ourselves that the Holy Spirit is in us. There is the future, there is the high calling, there is the persecution, there is the opposition, there is the enemy. I see it all. I must admit also that I am weak, that I lack the necessary powers and propensities. But instead of stopping there . . . I say, ?But the Spirit of God is in me. God has given me his Holy Spirit.? . . . What matters . . . is not what is true of us but what is true of Him.