The Baptist Bible Hour now comes to you under the direction of Elder LeSaire Bradley, Jr. O for a thousand tongues to sing, my great Redeemer's praise! Thou the rays of my God and King, thou triumphs of this grace!
This is LeSaire Bradley, Jr. inviting you to stay tuned for another message of God's sovereign grace. More love to thee, O Christ, more love to thee! Hear thou the prayer I make, God lend and be! This is my earnest plea, more love, O Christ, to thee! More love to thee, more love to thee!
Once earthly joy I craved, sought peace and rest. Now thee alone I seek, give what is best. This all my prayer shall be, more love, O Christ, to thee! Then shall my latest breath whisper thy praise!
This be the parting cry my heart shall raise! To this still its prayer shall be, more love, O Christ, to thee! More love to thee! More love to thee! I'm sure there are many of you that listen to the broadcast on a regular basis, and you hear me asking listeners to write, and you think I'm going to do that.
But it's so easy because of the busy rush of life to put off those things that we intend to do. But in order for us to remain on your station, we need support, and if you can help us at this time, we'll certainly be thankful for it. Our address is Baptist Bible Hour, Box 17037, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. I'm sure all of us are welcoming the fact that springtime is at hand, and so we're bringing today the second part of a message entitled, The Blessings of Springtime. As thirst the heart for water grows, so thirst my soul, O God, for thee! It seeks for all that never looks, and longs the living God to see, and longs the living God to see. O'er from the courts of God my tears, have been my food by night and day, while constantly with bitter steaks, where is thy God, the scoffers' spade? where is thy God, the scoffers' spade?
With free fight the income takes the mind, when on thy side the hallowed play, to Zion praising God on high, with thrones who kept the holy day, with thrones who kept the holy day. O why art thou cast down my soul, and my soul's troubles shouldst thou be? O thou in God and Him extolled, who gives this saving help to me?
who gives this saving help to me? Heavenly Father, we do thirst for fellowship with you. Life is empty and vain apart from the warmth of thy presence. We pray thy blessings upon thy churches and people, all over the land, all over the world. We pray for those in Ukraine that are suffering so, that you would bring them relief and comfort. And Heavenly Father, as we continue this message on the blessing of springtime, may our minds be refreshed with the thought that when thy spirit pours out his blessing, it is indeed a time of warmth and joy in which thy people praise thee, and thy name is exalted. Use this message to the glory of thy name. We pray it for Jesus' sake.
Amen. And then we think of springtime with reference to the church. There have been many wintry seasons. There have been seasons of persecution. We find many such accounts in the New Testament. The apostle Paul himself was imprisoned. He was beaten. He was threatened. He suffered greatly.
Stephen gave his life as a martyr for the cause of Christ. Others suffered. Persecutions came. It was a dark time in those difficult days.
Not only were their sufferings to be endured and persecutions to be faced, but the church was frequently troubled by false doctrine. Paul had to write to the church at Corinth to correct a number of disorders, but in particular from a doctrinal standpoint, had to set forth the truth about the resurrection of the body. There were those in that time saying that the body would never come out of the grave. That once it was buried, that was all. But Paul says, though it is sown in weakness, it's going to be raised in power. You look at the grave and say, that's a dark, bleak scene.
No life there where that body has been laid to rest. But Paul says there's coming a great springtime when those that were sown in weakness will be raised in power. That which are sown in the natural body will be raised in the spiritual body.
There's coming that glorious day of resurrection. Paul wrote to the churches of Galatia to correct the error of legalism. And the spirit of legalism still troubles the church many times today as people fail to grasp the marvelous, wonderful truth of the grace of God. In the first epistle of John, we find the apostle writing to deal with the error of Gnosticism. Those who claim to be in the know, but were very ready to deny the full truth that Jesus Christ was more than just a man.
He was the God-man. Those errors troubled the church. Over the years, there has been Arminianism, antinomianism, no-hellism, two-seedism, on and on the list of Harris's gold that have troubled the church. And now something that plagues many professed Christians today is the concept of the emerging church.
A whole new approach, a turning from the basic fundamental doctrines that have been held and treasured through the years. Yes, the church has had her winter seasons. We experience them from time to time when it seems that although we go through the same form and we meet together and we pray and we seek God. But we see very little stirring of his spirit.
We see very little moving to give evidence that God is very much at work. And it's easy to become discouraged in the cold days of winter. Say, are all of the happy, joyful seasons of springtime behind us?
Will those days never return? But just as we think about the winter seasons through which the church has passed, we think about the springtime as well. What a happy time it was, although the disciples had grieved greatly when they saw their Savior crucified. They delighted when He revealed Himself following His resurrection. And they watched Him as His feet lifted off the Mount of Olives and He ascended back to heaven, but the angel said, why stand ye here gazing? This same Jesus that you've seen going away is going to come back! And they waited in prayer for the coming of the Holy Spirit and when the Spirit of God descended upon them on the day of Pentecost, Peter preached in power and three thousand souls were converted!
Can't you imagine someone who spends most of their days in the frigid zones of winter saying, well, there must have been something wrong with that? Can't imagine three thousand souls all being converted at once, but the Spirit of God, moved with warmth and power. They were convicted, they cried out, what must we do? These confessed their faith in Jesus Christ.
That warm season continued. Acts chapter 4 in the fourth verse says, how be it many of them which heard the word believed, and the number of the men was about five thousand. We like to emphasize what happened on Pentecost, three thousand, but here there were five thousand men, which probably implies there were a lot more women as well. What a day! I've been excited when I've been in services where eighteen or twenty joined at a time.
I'd like to be present once where there were numbers like that. What a joy to see those who are convicted of sin displaying their faith in Christ, taking up their cross to follow Him. Acts chapter 6 verse 7 says, and the word of God increased, and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly, and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith. The word of God increased, the number of the disciples multiplied. We read the history of the church in this country. You read Elder Wilson Thompson describing his experience when he traveled from this part of the country and went to Missouri. He saw the churches in a cold state.
It was indeed winter time. He wondered how could we ever see the warmth of the moving of God's Spirit in this place, but he sought God to work according to his own pleasure. Shortly thereafter, the greatest earthquake on record for that part of the country occurred.
The description was such that the ground was as though it rolled. Such fear gripped the hearts of multitudes that in a short period of time, every time the church met, the house was full. I'm not saying that God is going to always work as He did there, but multitudes were gathered in and the churches prospered. The day of springtime had come. Oh, how we would long in this day and how we should pray for it. Lord, pour out Thy Spirit upon us. May the gospel be preached in power. May Thy Spirit prepare hearts that we can see people humbled, confessing themselves to be sinners and move to profess their faith in Jesus Christ without lingering, without hesitating, without holding back for a variety of reasons.
Don't you long for those warm, pleasant breezes as the Spirit of God might move among us by His power. We think about the church. We think about the things that have troubled it. The heresies that had to be confronted as Paul wrote those letters and epistles in the New Testament. We think that that coldness that sometimes prevails, that lethargic spirit, that indifference that often causes somebody to become very inactive as they would in the days of winter.
You become negligent of your duties. You find that when you're cold, you don't spend as much time in the Word of God. You say, there's no need for me to read.
I don't get that much out of it, but that's when you desperately need to read. You say, there's no need for me to try to pray. I don't feel like my prayers are going anywhere, but that's when you desperately need to pray. Oh, in those cold seasons, when maybe just as the Pharisees who were intent on defending their own interpretation of the law, their own legalistic concepts that prevail, it's easy to reach the point that the church suffers. A coldness prevails because there is a greater intensity about preserving certain traditions and concepts than there is about heeding the words of this beautiful passage in the Song of Solomon where he says, Arise, my love, come away.
Come away with me, with Jesus. You see, it's easy to have a mistaken notion that if we are sound in our doctrine, and I'm not discrediting being sound in doctrine. We certainly want to be, but as though that in itself is adequate. That if we're following the simple practice of the New Testament, that in itself is adequate. No, even beyond that, we need a close walk and fellowship and communion with Jesus Christ. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.
Come away with me. It doesn't matter how sound we may be. It doesn't matter how intense we may be to stand firmly for what we believe to be right if we don't have daily communion and fellowship with Jesus Christ. It's empty.
It doesn't mean anything. Oh, as a church, may we always be ready to hear his words. Arise, my love, and come away. Come away from our own personal preferences and human concepts. Come away from the things that would so easily distract us in this world.
Come away for our daily walk and fellowship with Jesus Christ. And then, thinking of our own personal experiences, we all individually have our winter seasons. They're days of trouble that are like the winter time to our soul. Jeremiah said in the book of Lamentations chapter 3 verse 2, He hath led me and brought me into darkness, but not into light. The dark days of winter in our own soul. Verse 8, And when I cry and shout, he shutteth out my prayer. Gloomy days of struggle.
Do you have some of those? Whole days when your zeal is not what it ought to be. You know you're to be zealous of good works, but rather than being zealous, you're half-hearted about it. You've said, someday when the warm breezes blow, someday when the springtime arrives, I'll be zealous once again.
Right now, things are not like they ought to be and I'll just have to wait. Yes, we have our cold seasons. Our seasons when we feel to be far from the Lord. Our days when our heart is cold and we feel barren and empty.
We don't see the evidences that we would like to see. But the call of the passages, Rise up my love, my fair one, and come away. Come away from the doubt which has plagued you. Doubt robs you of that close following to your Savior. You have doubts about yourself. You have doubts about your circumstances.
You have doubts and questions about the future. But by faith, if you're trusting Him, you move on. You know that His promises can be relied upon.
His covenants are going to be kept. Come away. Come away from resentments, from harshness, from bitterness, from an unforgiving spirit that may have brought on the coldness of your heart. Sometimes a person questions it.
I don't understand. Why am I so cold? Why do I feel so far from the Lord? Have you searched your heart? Have you examined yourself?
If there's a refusal to forgive, if there's resentment toward others, all of these things are detrimental. They keep you in the cold, frigid days rather than to walk out into the sunlight of His love. Verse 15 of the second chapter of the Song of Solomon says, Take us the foxes, the little foxes that spoil the vines, for our vines have tender grapes. Take you the foxes, the little foxes. The foxes come in and gnaw at the vines and eat the grapes and destroy the harvest. You see, often we're looking for the big thing out here. We're looking for this detrimental, destructive thing that's going to invade the church or become a part of our own life.
And yet, what is it? It's really the little foxes that are so destructive. They destroy relationships. They disrupt the peace of the church. They rob you of your joy. Have you examined yourself closely of late to see if there are little foxes that are gnawing at the vines?
You've tried to ignore them, but they're there and they have a devastating effect. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away. Come away from your coldness of heart and have it warmed in His fellowship.
Come away from the sluggishness, the indifference, the lethargic attitude that you've maintained. Come away with Him because it's only as you have fellowship with Him that you'll be warm and vivacious and excited and zealous about what you're doing. You remember they said concerning the disciples at a time that they were threatening them and telling them to preach no more in Jesus' name, but they had taken knowledge of them that they had been with Jesus.
This is what makes all the difference in the world. You can study all of the controversies and debates that have troubled the church. You can study all of the heresies that have plagued it in the past. All of these things can be looked at, but if there's not close communion and fellowship with Jesus Christ, there will always be coldness that's plaguing us. Hear His words. Come. Matthew 11, verse 28, Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Arise, my fair one, come away. Come away with me. Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden. In Revelation chapter 22, verse 17, The Spirit and the Bride say, Come, and let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come, and whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely. Come.
Come away. Let the weary one come and rest in him. Let the thirsty one come and drink of the water of life and be satisfied.
What beautiful language. My beloved spake and said unto me, Arise. Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away. For lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone, the flowers appear on the earth, the time of the singing of birds is come, the voice of the turtle is heard in our land.
The fig tree putteth forth her green figs and the vines with tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away. There will finally come a time that we'll reach the end of the journey here and all of our winter days will be over. All of our sufferings and our trials will be ended. And the Lord will say, Arise and come away. To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. And that eternal dwelling place with him will be like springtime forever.
No cold winds to blow, no adversity to trouble us, no sad hearts to cast us down, no weariness to make us wish for another place to be. At the resurrection there is the ultimate and final renewal. Our bodies being brought out of the grave conformed perfectly to the image of our Savior Jesus Christ. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away. As we behold the beauty of springtime and are made to think about the power of God that is there displayed, the covenant of God that is being kept, the grace of God that can be remembered, may we see how indeed the lesson can present beautifully for us the picture of what happened when Jesus Christ came after the wintry season of law service in bringing in grace and truth, which were personified in our Savior. As we think at times about the cold seasons that the church has suffered and may yet be suffering, let us rejoice to know that God is able to send the warm breezes of his Spirit and bring a refreshing springtime where the flowers of his grace will be viewed in abundance. And in our own personal walk, when we have our winter seasons and it seems that they drag on so long, let's be reassured that the springtime will yet come. And look to that happy day that springtime will be ours forever because we'll live on that peaceful shore where we'll not grow old and there will be no weariness and no cold, dark seasons.
If you have heard the voice speaking to you, come away. And by faith have embraced Jesus Christ as your Savior, we give you opportunity to confess him as we stand to sing. There is coming a day when the heartache shall come, no more clouds in the sky, no more tears hidden in the eye. What a joy to anticipate that there will be a day of eternal springtime when all things are made new by the grace of God. The cold wintry blast of winter will all be behind us and there will be a time of joy and delight as we bask in the sunlight of the Savior's love forever and ever.
I hope that you will write us in until next week at this same time. May the Lord richly bless you all. Look upon his face, the one who saved me by his grace, when he takes me by the hand and leads me through the promised land, what a day, glorious day that will be. The Baptist Bible Hour has come to you under the direction of Elder LeSaire Bradley, Jr. Address all mail to the Baptist Bible Hour, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217.
That's the Baptist Bible Hour, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. There'll be no sorrow there, no more burdens to bear, no more sickness, no pain, no more parting over there. And forever I will be with the one who died for me. What a day, glorious day that will be. What a day that will be when my Jesus I shall see. When I look upon his face, the one who saved me by his grace, when he takes me by the hand and leads me through the promised land, what a day, glorious day that will be.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-26 02:08:42 / 2023-03-26 02:17:35 / 9