God’s Good News

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Paul, Christ Jesus’ slave, a chosen apostle, appointed to God’s good news (Romans 1:1, BSV).

Paul proclaimed the Gospel of God, i.e., “God’s Good News.” It was a Good News that came from God. It was a Good News with the sovereign God of the universe in it.

It was not the Bad News of Religion – one of condemnation and shame, one that professes a “loving” god whose hands are tied and will have to torment most of his creatures endlessly.

Instead it was truly “Good News,” and that from a Good God of Love, concerning the Son of His Love, our Lord Jesus Christ.

God’s Son IS the Good News of God. His Good News is entirely Christ centered; man has absolutely no part to play in it. It allows for no rebellion, and it leaves no one behind.

Paul was “appointed to God’s Good News.”

C2Pilkington-4Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.

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Don’t Quarrel with the Inmates

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We know too much about things in this world to lean much on man. … Every single item of history today is certainly in accord with God’s intention, even though it seems that almost all of it is contrary to His will. Only if that is true can we have universal reconciliation. God can save all mankind eventually only if He keeps the reins in His hand.

All will not simply be saved, but reconciled, glorifying God. All this is fulfilling God’s intention. … So let us give thanks for it, no matter how bad it seems to be. When we realize this, then we can live in this insane asylum, and we will not quarrel with the inmates. … We acknowledge that all is out of Him, as well as through Him and, consequently will be for Him in the great consummation.

KnochA.E. Knoch (1874-1965)
Unsearchable Riches, Vol. 38, 1947
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But if Not

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In Daniel chapter 3, the “Three Hebrew Children,” to put it lightly, were in a “tight spot.” Their very lives were in the balance. The king held the power of their lives in his hands, or so he thought.

Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego knew that things are not always as they appeared to be, and that what they saw with their eyes was not the real picture of the situation. Despite the fact that King Nebuchadnezzar was an earthly monarch which appeared to have their destiny under his control, they knew that there was a heavenly Sovereign Who had all things under His control. They knew that God was able to deliver them!

Listen to their response to the king.

… Our God … is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace …

It can bring great peace to any trial or situation that we face to know in our hearts that “… Our God … is able to deliver us.” Faith calls us to live daily in these words: “God … is able!” Yet, faith is even greater than all of this! Faith calls us to live beyond “God … is able!” Listen to the rest of their response.

But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods, nor worship the golden image which you have set up.

Just as with the “Three Hebrew Children,” God is able to deliver us from our trials and troubles, however great they are; but if He does not, He is still our God, He is still in control, and He is still working “all things after the counsel of His Own will!” (Ephesians 1:11), “He is working all together for good” (Romans 8:28). Faith calls us to far greater heights, to live daily in these words: “But if not!”

We can’t always understand the great trials of life; we can’t always understand what is truly best for us and our loved ones; we can’t always see the “big picture” for what it really is – from its heavenly perspective – but rest in this immovable fact: Father does, and can!

Father is able to deliver you from your current situation that at this moment may seem so hopeless; “but if not,” nothing’s changed: He’s still the Great God, and sometimes in His great love and wisdom He’s destined for you not deliverance, but endurance – and that by His unfailing grace. The knowledge of this can settle the weary heart and bring peace to the troubled mind.

Regardless of the situations that we face, Father is in control. Rest in that.

C2Pilkington-4Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.

Not Getting Very Far

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So then neither is he anything who plants, neither he who waters; but God Who gives the increase (I Corinthians 3:7).

Does it sometimes seem that you are not getting very far – in your personal life? In your financial life? Even in your spiritual life?

A part of the world’s view of success is the idea of “getting far” – whatever that may mean. Did you ever consider that you might be laboring under an unspiritual expectation? Did you ever think that, just maybe, that “far” place to which you are trying to get was not, in fact, God’s plan for you after all?

During most of all of my adult life, as I have learned truth and attempted to share and live it, there has always been someone with an objection such as, “You are not going to get very far teaching that!” Is that my aim? To get very far?

In reference to the issue of proclaiming the good news, our friend Tony Smith wisely answers the objection of not getting very far:

When it comes to proclaiming the evangel, I am not trying to get … very far. Instead, I just go wherever my Master sends me, and where I go, when I get there and who I speak to when I do is entirely up to Him. He does not need or require my works to complete His purpose. If all of us were never to say another word about the evangel, then the rocks would shout it out.

Wonderful words, aren’t they?

It is not about us: our abilities, our failures, our successes. After all, is He not in charge? Does He not work all things after the counsel of His Own will? Why not abandon the expectation of “getting very far,” and just leave the results up to Him?

C2Pilkington-4Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.

Shall We Not Receive Evil?

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“What? Shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil” In all this Job did not sin with his lips (Job 2:9-10).

God always knows best. The evil which He creates in our lives (Isaiah 45:7) plays a key part in our spiritual development and maturity. Job learned to recognize that good as well as evil came from the very “hand of God.”

So many who profess to know God do not acknowledge this important truth. For them, even to suggest that “evil” comes to them from the hand of God is sinful; yet Job declared it to be so, with his own lips, and God proclaimed of him, “In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.”

Faith recognizes that the rain is as important as the sunshine, that the tears are as needed as laughter, and that the dark colors are as valuable in the tapestry as are the light. Like a building under construction, a painting yet wet and unfinished, a batter unbaked, a tapestry still being woven, a tree that has yet to reach maturity, we with patience await the Master’s grand completion.

I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things (Isaiah 45:7.)

Father has a plan, He is in control. Rest in that.

C2Pilkington-4Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.

God Meant It for Good

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God’s hand in our lives leaves no place untouched. Even that which seemingly is working against us is used by our Father to fulfill His Own good purpose in our lives.

A powerful example of this is demonstrated in the life of Joseph. His brothers had sold him into slavery. In what would appear to many as a very sad and unfortunate turn of events, Joseph saw a divine appointment: “God meant it for good.”

But as for you, you thought evil against me; but God meant it for good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive (Genesis 50:20).

Do not be discouraged in your severest of trials. Trust God’s steady, unfailing hand in all that we experience – in the “good” as well as in the “evil.” The knowledge that “God meant it for good” can settle the tired heart and bring peace to the worried mind.

Father has a plan, He is in control. Rest in that.

C2Pilkington-4Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.

Championing the Character of God

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We are not contending for a mere doctrine. We are championing the revealed character of God. The gloomy cloud of theology has obscured Him from us far too long. Its chilling mists have cooled our enjoyment of His power and His wisdom and His grace. Its libels and aspersions on His name have repelled the instinctive responses of our hearts so that we could not fully and unreservedly justify Him. Nor were we able to defend His honor in the presence of His enemies. But now all this is gone. We are able to vindicate Him in all His ways before all His creatures.

KnochA.E. Knoch (1874-1965)
Unsearchable Riches, vol. 5, page 3