Read history and see how the covenanters stood and died rather than give up to the enemy. Are we satisfied to be degenerate sons of great fathers" Consider A. B. Simpson who walked the shores of the Atlantic Ocean with cardboard in the soles of his shoes because he did not have money to buy new ones. He prayed and groaned in spirit and cried to God for people of all nations who had not heard the gospel. He prayed "Oh God, I believe Jesus Christ thy Son is the same yesterday, today and forever." We are his descendants, but we ought to spend a day in sackcloth and ashes. At 36, Simpson was a Presbyterian preacher so sick that he said, "I feel I could fall into the grave when I have a funeral." He could not preach for months at a time because of his sickness. He went to a little camp meeting in the woods and heard a quartet sing, "No man can work like Jesus/ No man can work like Him." Simpson went off among the pine trees with that ringing in his heart: "Nobody can work like Jesus; nothing is too hard for Jesus. No man can work like Him." The learned, stiff-necked Presbyterian threw himself down upon the pine needles and said, "If Jesus Christ is what they said He was in the song, heal me." The Lord healed him, and he lived to be 76 years old. Simpson founded a society that is now one of the largest evangelical denominations in the world, the Christian and Missionary Alliance. We are his descendants and we sing his songs. But are we going to allow ourselves to listen to that which will modify our faith, practices and beliefs, water down our gospel and dilute the power of the Holy Spirit" I, for one, am not!
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It is almost certain that sin is the cause of the rut, the circular grave in which so many people find themselves. Since only sin offends God, and sin is extremely deceitful, it can be present doing its deadly work while the people may not be aware of it at all until it is called to their attention. There are several kinds of sin that cause the rut. First is the sin of omission, an act left undone that should have been done. Next is the sin of commission, which is an act displeasing to God, to the Holy Spirit. There is also sin of the flesh. The world may approve of sin of the flesh, and even churches and pastors may permit it. It is astonishing what preachers will joke about with their congregations, laugh off and put up with. Maybe pastors permit it or laugh it off at least, and say, "Oh well, you can't be too holy, too angelic in this world." But the Holy Spirit is grieved by it. So the people move around their circular grave not hearing the voice much any more. They used to hear it, "Get up, get up. You've been in this place long enough. Get up! Move! There's the land before you—I've given it to you. It's all in the covenant; it is all in the purchase of the blood. It is all yours. Get up and move toward me. Move toward the holy place and the holy land and your possessions. Victory and deliverance and power in prayer—it is all yours. Rise up and take it." They once heard that signal coming strongly to them, but it is not coming so strongly any more. The Holy Spirit is grieved and does not talk so much. And the people move around in their circular grave.
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