The Morning of the Lord’s Day

An Exercise of Faith

Beloved Lord Jesus, to Thee is the desire of my soul. Thou art He in whom the love of the Father is disclosed to me. Thou art He who hast loved me even unto death on earth, and still lovest me in Thy glory on high. Thou art He in whom alone my soul has its life. Beloved Lord Jesus, my soul cleaves hard to Thee. On this holy morning I will prepare myself to go to the table by exercising and confessing anew my faith in Thee. My Saviour, do Thou Thyself come into me: my faith can only be the fruit of what Thou givest me to know of Thyself.

My Saviour, I come to Thee this morning, as aforetime, with the confession that there is nothing in myself on which I can lean. All my experiences confirm to me what Thou hast said of my corruption: that in me, that is, in my flesh, there dwelleth no good thing. And yet I come to Thee to lay my claim before Thee, to let it prevail with Thee, and to take Thee as mine own. O, my Lord, my claim rests on the word of my Father, that He has given His Son for sinners, that Thou didst die for the ungodly. My sinfulness is my claim upon Thee: Thou art for sinners. My claim is God’s eternal righteousness: the Surety has paid; the guilty must go free. My claim rests on Thy love: Thou hast compassion on the wretched. My claim is Thy faithfulness: O, my Saviour, I have given myself to Thee and Thou hast received me, and what Thou hast begun in me, Thou wilt gloriously complete. That which has passed betwixt Thee and me gives me increased courage; and now I come to take Thee as mine, and enjoy Thee, with all Thou art and hast. Blessed Lord, unveil Thyself to me, in order that my faith may be truly strong and joyful.

Yes: Lord Jesus, Thou art mine: with all Thy fulness Thou art mine. God be praised, I can say this: Thy blood is mine: it has atoned for all, yea all, my sins. Thy righteousness is mine; yea, Thou Thyself art my righteousness, and makest me altogether acceptable to the Father. Thy love is mine: yea, in all its height and depth and length and breadth is Thy love mine, O Jesus: it is the habitation in which I abide, the very air I breathe. And all that Thou hast is mine. Thy wisdom is mine; Thy strength is mine; Thy holiness is mine; Thy life is mine; Thy glory is mine; Thy Father is mine. Beloved Lord Jesus, my soul has only one desire this day: that Thou, my Almighty Friend, wouldst make me with a silent but very powerful activity of faith to behold Thee, and inwardly appropriate Thee as my possession. Lord Jesus, in the simplicity of a faith that depends only on Thee, I say: God be praised, Jesus with all His fulness is mine. How little do I yet thoroughly know or enjoy this truth: Jesus with all His fulness is mine.

Help me now, Lord, to go to Thy table in the blessed expectation of new communications out of the treasures of Thy love. Let my faith be not only strong, but large: may it cause me to open my mouth wide.

I have so much of which I stand in need today. But what I need above all is this: that I may know my Lord as the daily food of my soul, and that I may comprehend how He will every day be my strength and my life. My desire is that I may understand that not only at the Lord’s Supper, but every hour of my life on earth, my Lord Jesus is willing to take the responsibility of my life, to be my life, and to live His life in me. O Jesus, do enable me to grasp this truth today.

Beloved Lord, I believe that Thou hast the power to work this in me. I know that Thy love is waiting for me, and will take great delight in doing this for me. I believe, Lord, and Thou wilt come to help my unbelief. Yea, although I do not as yet thoroughly understand it, I will believe that my Jesus will this day communicate Himself anew to me as my life, and wilt give me, through the operation of His Holy Spirit, a larger participation of His heavenly life which He lives on high. I will believe that what He this day does, He will every day henceforth confirm. Yea, my precious Saviour, I will this day betake me with all my misery, and make myself over to Thee to dwell in me. And I will believe that Thou, because Thou art wholly my possession, wilt make myself ready and come in and take possession of me, and fill me with Thyself. Lord, I believe: increase this faith within me.

And now, Lord, prepare me and all Thy congregation for a blessed observance of the Supper. Now, unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be the glory in the Church and in Christ Jesus, unto all generations forever and ever. Amen.

Take Eat

Take, eat; this is My body which is given for you.” Matthew 26:26; Luke 22:19.

When the Lord says this, He points out to us that His body is not so much His as it is ours, since He received it and suffered it to be broken on the cross, not for His own sake, but for ours; and that He now also desires that we should look upon it and appropriate it as our own possession. Thus, with His body, He gives Himself to us, and desires that we should take Him. The fellowship of the Lord’s Supper is a fellowship of giving and taking. Blessed giving: blessed taking.

Blessed giving: the person gives value to the gift. Who is He that gives? It is my Creator, who comes here to give what my soul needs. It is my Redeemer, who, at the table, will give to me in possession what He has purchased for me.

And what gives He? His body and His blood. He gives the greatest and the best He can bestow: yea, all that it is possible for Him to givethe broken body which He first offered to the Father as a sacrifice for sin, a sacrifice that filled Him with joy. And what He offered to the Father, to put away sin before Him, He now offers to me, to put away sin in me.

And wherefore gives He this? Because He loves me. He desires to redeem me from death, and to bestow on me eternal life in Himself. He gives Himself to me to be the food, the joy, the living power of my soul. O blessed, Heavenly giving of eternal love! Jesus gives me His own body: Jesus gives me Himself.

And not less blessed taking, for it is so simple. Just as I receive with my hand the bread that is intended for me, and hold it before me as my own, so by faith in the word, in which Jesus gives Himself to me, I take Him for myself, and I know that He is really mine. The body in which He suffered for sin is my possession: the power of His atonement is mine. The body of Jesus is my food and my life.

And how free is the taking. I think of my unworthiness, only to find in it my claim on Him, the Righteous One, who died for the unrighteous. I think of my misery only as the poverty and the hunger for which the festal repast is prepared, this divine bread so cordially given. What Jesus in His love would give so heartily and willingly, I will as heartily and freely take.

And so real is the taking. Where God gives, there is power and life. In giving, there is a communication, a real participation of that which is bestowed. Consequently, my taking does not depend on my strength: I have only to receive what my Saviour brings to me and inwardly imparts. I, a mere worm, take what He, the Almighty, gives. Blessed giving, blessed taking.

Blessed God, may my taking be in conformity with Thy giving; Thy giving, the standard and the measure of my taking. What God gives, I take as a whole. As Thou givest, so I also receive, heartily, undividedly, lovingly. Precious Saviour, my taking depends wholly on Thy giving.

Come Thou and give: give Thyself truly and with power in the communion of the Spirit. Come, my eternal Redeemer, and let Thy love delight itself and be satisfied in me, whilst Thou dost unfold to me the divine secret of the word: My body given for you. Yea, Lord, I wait upon Thee. What thou givest me as my share in Thy broken body, that will I take and eat. And my soul shall go hence, joyful and strengthened, to thank Thee and to serve Thee. Amen.


In Remembrance of Me

Do this in remembrance of Me.” Luke 22:19

Do this in remembrance of me.” Is this injunction, then, really necessary? Can it be possible that I should forget Jesus?

Forget Jesus! Jesus, who thought of me in eternity; who, indeed, forgot His own sorrows on the Cross, but never forgets mine; who says to me that a mother will sooner forget her sucking child than He in heaven will forget me. Can I forget Jesus? Jesus, my Sun, my Surety, my Bridegroom; my Jesus, without whose love I cannot live: can I ever forget Jesus?

Ah, me! how often have I forgotten Jesus. How frequently has my foolish heart grieved Him and prepared all manner of sorrow for itself by forgetting Jesus. At one time it was in the hour of care, or sin, or grief, at another in prosperity and joy, that I suffered myself to be led astray. O my soul, be deeply ashamed that Thou shouldst ever forget Jesus.

And Jesus will not be forgotten. He will see to it that this shall not take place for His own sake. He loves us so dearly that He sets great store by our love, and cannot endure to be forgotten. Our love is to Him His happiness and joy: He requires it from us with a holy strictness: He cannot endure to be forgotten. So truly has the eternal Love chosen us that it longs to live in our remembrance every day.

For our sakes also He will see to it that He is not forgotten. By the memory, through this kind of remembrance, the past becomes the present in perspective. Jesus always yearns to be with us and beside us, that He may make us taste of His crucified love and the power of His heavenly life. Jesus wills that we should always remember Him.

How I long never more to forget Jesus. Thank God, Jesus will so give Himself to me at the table that He shall become to me one never to be forgotten. At the table He will overshadow and satisfy me with His love. He will make His love to me so glorious that my love shall always hold Him in remembrance. What is more, He will so unite Himself with me, will so give His life in me, that out of the power of His own indwelling in me it will not be possible for me to forget Him. I have too much considered it a duty and a work to remember Jesus. Lord Jesus, so fill me with Thy joy that it will be an impossibility for me not to remember Thee.

Jesus remembers me with such a tender love that He desires and will grant that the remembrance of Him shall always live in me. It is for this end that He gives me the new remembrance of His love in the Lord’s Supper. I will draw near to it in this joyful assurance: Jesus will there teach me to remember Him always.

My Lord, how wonderful is this Thy love: that it should be a matter of deep interest to Thee to be Held in remembrance by us, and that Thou shouldst always desire to live in our remembrance in our love. Thou knowest, Lord, that it is not by any force my heart can be taught to remember Thee. But if by Thy love Thou dwellest in me, thinking of Thee becomes a joy, no effort or trouble, but the sweetest rest. Lord, my soul praises Thee for the wonderful grace of the Supper. First, Thou givest Thyself in Thine eternal and unchangeable love as the daily food of our souls, and then Thou dost charge us, out of the power of Thy promised presence, wherewith Thou wilt feed us, not to forget Thee. Now I dare promise it. O my Lord, at Thy table, give Thou Thyself to my soul as its food, be every day my food, and Thy love shall keep the thought of Thee ever living. Then shall I never forget Thee; no, not for a single moment. For then I shall have no life save in Thy love. Amen.


My Blood

And He took a cup, and gave thanks, and gave to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; for this is My blood.” The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not a communion of the blood of Christ?” Matthew 26:27, 28; 1 Corinthians 10:16.

For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh atonement by reason of the life” (Leviticus 27:11). For the blood is the life, the living spirit; and therefore atonement is linked with the shedding of blood. It was the surrender of the life of an innocent animal in the place of guilty man. And thus with the shedding of Jesus’ blood, His life is surrendered for our sins. The worth and the power of that blood are the worth and the power of the life of Jesus. Every drop of that blood has in it the power of an endless life.

Jesus gives me His blood. When I become partaker of that blood, I have part in the atonement which it established, the forgiveness which it secured. I have part in all that wonderful suffering in which it was shed. I have part in all the love of which that suffering and that bloodshedding were the revelation. I have part in that life which is in the blood and is in it first surrendered and then taken up again. I have part in the life of Jesus, surrendered upon the Cross, raised from the grave and now glorified in heaven. O glorious wonders of grace which lie hid in that word: Drink, for this is My blood.”

The blood of Jesus is my drink of life. Jesus’ love is the power of my life. The spirit of Jesus’ life is the spirit of my life. O my God, help me to conceive these wonders. How powerful, how heavenly must that life be which is nourished by the New Wine of the kingdom and has communion with the blood of God’s Son, not only by cleansing, but also by drinking.

Blessed Jesus, who hast loved me so wonderfully, Thou wilt not deny me the request which I now state to Thee: unfold to me the secret of Thy life in me which Thou bestowest upon me, when from above Thou still givest me to drink the blood shed for the forgiveness of my sins. Most precious Saviour, illumine and enlarge my faith, that I may now realize this truth: Jesus’ own life is in my innermost being, the life of my life. He through His own blood entered in once for all into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption” with the Father. Through Thine own blood come Thou to my heart to bring in this redemption there also. Lord Jesus, my heart thirsts for Thee. Come this day to me with that precious blood and let the full power of it be unveiled to me by Thyself. Let it quench my thirst. Let it cleanse me from all unrighteousness. Let it bring me into harmony with the joy and praise of those who sing: Unto Him that loveth us and loosed us from our sins by His blood, to Him be the glory and the dominion forever.” Amen.


The New Covenant

And the cup in like manner after supper, saying, This cup is the new covenant in my blood.” Luke 22:20.

The Lord’s Supper is a covenant mealthe Feast of the New Covenant. It is of great importance to understand the New Covenant thoroughly.

It is something quite different from the Old Covenantinfinitely better and more glorious. The Old Covenant which God made with Israel was indeed glorious, but yet not adapted for sinful man, because he could not fulfill it. God gave to His people His perfect law, with the glorious promises of His help, His guidance, His blessing, if they should continue in the observance of it. But man in his inner life was still under the power of sin: he was lacking in the strength requisite for abiding in the covenant of His God.

God promised to make a New Covenant. (Read with care Jeremiah 31:31-34, 33:38-42; Hebrews 8:6-14.) In this New Covenant, God promised to bestow the most complete forgiveness of sins and to take man altogether into His favor. He further promised to communicate to him His law, not externally as written on tables, but inwardly and in his heart, so that he should have strength to fulfill its precepts. He was to give him a new heart and a new spiritin truth, His own Holy Spirit. Man was not called on in the first instance to promise that he would walk in God’s law. God rather took the initiative in promising that He would enable him to do so. I will put My Spirit within you,” said the Lord by Ezekiel (36:27), and cause you to walk in My statutes, and ye shall keep My judgments and do them.”

Of this New Covenant, Jesus is the Mediator and Surety (Heb. 12:22, 8:6). As Surety, He stands pledged to us to secure that God will fulfill all His promises. As Surety, He is no less pledged to God in our behalf that we shall keep God’s commandments. Glorious covenant of grace, with its wonderful provision for all our needs. In the Lord Jesus, God saw it meet to establish this covenant, without fear that His rights would suffer any violation. God could rely upon His Son to see to it that His honor should be respected. And in Jesus I also may well dare to enter into this covenant, without fear that I shall not be able to fulfill it: I can rely upon Jesus to see to it that He will bring everything to completion for and in me. In the New Covenant, Jesus the Surety has not only wholly discharged the old debt, but also undertaken the responsibility for whatever else may be still required in our case.

In this New Covenant, I this day surrender myself to Thee, O my God. Thou wilt bind me to Thyself with Thy glorious promises. Thou bindest Thyself to forgive my sins, to love me as Thy child, to train, to sanctify, to bless me; to give me light, and desire, and strength for abiding in Thy covenant and doing Thy will. And I am bound to Thee in Thy precious Son. Eternal God, grant that the Holy Spirit, who is one of the promises of this New Covenant, may this day unfold to me what Thy love has destined for me in it. Wilt Thou make me to understand that Thou hast undertaken and promised to secure that I shall walk in Thy ways, and that Thou givest me Thy Son as the Surety of the Covenant to carry out all its details? Then shall I take Thy Son and the Covenant sealed with His blood, with the blessed joy of knowing that He will be in me the fulfilling of the covenant, the fulfilling as well of Thy covenant promises as of my covenant obligations.

Blessed Jesus, reach to me this day the blood of the covenant. Amen.


Unto Remission of Sins

My blood, which is shed unto remission of sins.” Matthew 26:28.

Sin: at the Lord’s Table, this word is not to be dispensed with. It is sin that gives us a right to Christ. It is as a Saviour from sin that Christ desires to have to do with us. It is as sinners that we sit down at the table. If I cannot always come immediately to Christ and appropriate Him, I can always come on the ground of my sin. Sin is the handle by which I can take hold of Christ. I may not always be able actually to lay my hand on Christ and say: Christ is mine; but I can always say: Sin is mine. And when I then hear the glad tidings that Christ died for sin, I obtain courage to say: Sin is mine, and Christ, who died for sin, died also for me. When I look upon my own righteousness, I have no courage: but when I first look on sin, I can make bold to say that Christ is mine. Sin: how sweet it is to me to hear that word from the month of Jesus at the table.

And what does my Saviour say about sin? He speaks of it only to give the assurance of the forgiveness of sin. That God no more remembers my sin and does not impute it to me, that He does not desire to look upon my sin and deal with me in deserved wrath, but meets me in love and complacency as one whose sin is taken away: that is what my Jesus secures for me, where He points me to His blood and gives it to me as my own. And that is what thou mayest believe and enjoy, O my soul, when thou drinkest that blood. And when Thou askest Him to make known to thee by His Holy Spirit the divine glory of this forgiveness as complete, effectual, entire, always valid and eternal, then shalt thou, too, be able to sing: Blessed is the man whose transgression is forgiven.”

Then shall you also see how this forgiveness as a living seed includes in itself all other blessings. For to whom God forgives sin, him He also receives, him He loves, him He acknowledges as a child, and gives him the Holy Spirit with all His gifts. The forgiveness of sin is, as it were, the pledge of entrance into the whole riches of the grace of God. The soul that day by day really enjoys forgiveness in the Lord Jesus shall go hence in the joy and power of the Lord.

O what a blessed feast: to know myself to be one with Jesus as a ransomed soul, and, being in Him, to be able to look out upon my sin: this is true blessedness. Blessed it is, because there, while He points with His finger to the sin for which I must be so bitterly ashamed, I can hear this glorious word: Forgiven.” Blessed, because, for the confirmation of this forgiveness and the communication of all its blessing, I am there nourished by the very blood which was shed for remission of sins. Blessed, because in the joy of the forgiveness and the enjoyment of that blood, I am anew linked with that Jesus who loves me so wonderfully. Yea, blessed, because I know that in place of sins He now gives me Himself to fill my empty heart, in order that it be adorned with the light and the beauty of His own life. Blessed feast, blessed drinking unto remission of sins!

Precious Saviour, I am naturally so afraid to look upon my sins, to acknowledge, to combat them. In the joy and the power of Thy forgiveness, I dread this no more. Now I can look upon them as a victor. Help me to love Thee much, as one to whom much has been forgiven. Amen.


For Many

My blood, which was shed for many.” Matthew 26:28

Jesus has a large heart. At the Supper Table, He not only forgot Himself, to think of His own who were gathered there around Him, but His loving eye glanced forward to all who are redeemed by His blood. For Many”: with this word He teaches His disciples to maintain fellowship, not merely with those with whom they sit at the table, but with the entire host of the redeemedthe multitude that no man can number. In the light of this word we see Him breaking, the bread and giving it to the disciples, and then again to the multitude after the day of Pentecost, and then yet again to others until the everwidening circle extends to the spot where we now sit. This truth binds all cerebrations of the Supper into one single communion in immediate contact with Him who first instituted it. It unites also the separate circles of Christ’s disciples into one universal Church, and all distinction and all separation vanish in the joyful thought that every member shares equally in the love and the life of the one Head from whom also He receives the bread. It sets the farthest distant in a relation to the love of Jesus as intimate as those who at the first received the broad from His own hand.

The observance of the Supper accordingly must renew our feeling of unity not only with the Head, but also with the Body of which we are members. The Supper must enlarge our heart, till it be as wide as the heart of Jesus. Next to love to the Lord Jesus must present love to the brethren fill our souls. Along with the word, For you,” which, as coming from His lips, is so precious to us, He desires us to couple and remember this other word, For many.”

For many:” some Christians are satisfied when all goes well with their own little circle: they think of going to heaven only in company with those that belong to them. This ought not to be. The Supper must enlarge the heart in love and prayer for all that belong to Jesus, so as to make us rejoice with them or weep with them. Nor even at this point must we stop. The true disciple of Jesus thinks of all who may yet be in their sin, and do not know about the blood which was shed for many.” Every real experience of the power of the blood must introduce me more deeply into the feelings and dispositions in which it was shed, and will constrain me to bring to the knowledge of it, the many,” for whom Christ poured it out. He that really drinks the blood which was shed for many,” and becomes inwardly partaker of the life and the love which was poured forth in that bloodhow shall he find all selfishness and all narrow-mindedness vanishing, away, and have his heart enlarged to embrace the wide compass of Jesus’ heart and Jesus’ word, when He said: My blood, shed for many.”

Precious Saviour, grant unto me Thy Spirit, that the Same mind which is in Thee may be also in me. Cause me to understand how even of Thy holy Supper thou canst say: Compel them to come in, that My house may be full.” And may all Thy people be more filled with the thought: Still there is room.” O Lord Jesus, who Thyself art love, shed abroad Thy love in our hearts by Thy Holy Spirit. Amen.


For You

My body, which is given for you. . . . My blood, which is shed for you.” Luke 22:19, 20.
It is an old saying: The whole secret of true blessedness lies in one word, the little word Me.” All knowledge of the truth, and all acquaintance with the gospel, are of no avail without the personal appropriation of that short phrase, For me. And that word of man has, on the other hand, its foundation in the word of Jesus, For you.”

So was it at the Lord’s Table. In speaking of His body and blood, the Saviour addressed His disciples, and said to them: Given for you; shed for you.

How would the disciples in a later day feel themselves strengthened by that word. How could Peter in his deep fall, and Thomas in his grievous unbelief, and each of the others, fail to encourage themselves by remembering this: He spoke to me so cordially, just indeed as if it was meant for me alone, when He said: Given for you.”

It is in this word that for me also the richest blessing of the Lord’s Supper is

wrapt up. For, not less than to the first disciples, does the Saviour desire to say to every one of His guests: Given for you. By His Holy Spirit, He is as near to us as to them: He can make us feel the power of His eye and His voice. Not only by reaching the bread to each one separately, but much more by the heavenly operation of His Holy Spirit, will Jesus address each one, saying: Given for you.

Affecting word: how must it humble and subdue my heart. There sits the Son of God in His glory. There I bow myself in the dust, I who have been an enemy and ungodly, who am still all too much unfaithful and a transgressor. And, behold, with an eye in which holy earnestness is mingled with tender love, He points me to His broken body and shed blood, and says to me: For you, for you.

Lord, it is enough for that precious word my soul thanks Thee. That word I will lay hold of, and find in it confidence to return the answer: Yes, for me, for me; for many,” but yet also for me. The love, and the redemption, and the life, and the glory of which that blood speaks, I dare say of all: For me, for me.

Precious Jesus, my soul praises Thee for that loving word: For you. Hear my supplication, and let Thy Spirit at Thy table address it to me very powerfully. O strengthen me for a very confident and joyful appropriation of all that Thou sayest, and when my hand takes the bread, and I drink the wine, grant me with a very large and clear faith to say: For me, for me. Blessed Lord, I shall wait in silence for Thy Spirit; for to have that word from Thee is to me the secret of my blessing at the table. And Thou will give it to me. Amen.


One Body

We who are many are one body: for we all partake of the one bread.” A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; even as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” 1 Corinthians 10:17; John 13:34, 35.

Union with the Lord Jesus, the Head, involves at the same time mutual union with the members of the body. He that really eats the body of Jesus and drinks His blood, is incorporated with His body, and stands thenceforth in the closest relationship to the whole body, with all its members. We have fellowship, not only in His body which He gave up to death, but especially in His body which He brought again from the deadthat is, the Church. We are one body; for we all partake of the one bread.”

So deep and wonderful was this union of His believing disciples at the table of the New Covenant, so entirely new the life of the Spirit by which they were to be gathered together into one in Him as His body, that the Lord spoke of the love which must animate them as a new commandment. In the New Covenant there was present a new life, and thus also a new love. By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one to another.”

This thought is too much forgotten at the Lord’s Table, and that to the great loss of the Church. How often have guests at Jesus’ Table sat next [to] one another for years in concession without knowing or loving one another, without holding fellowship with one another, or helping one another. Many a one has sought after closer connection with the Lord and not found it, because they would have the Head alone without the body. Many a blessing has been missed and lost at the Supper, because the unity of the body was never considered. Yes: would that were it thoroughly understood; Jesus must be loved, and honored, and served, and known in His members. As by the circulation of the blood every member of our body is kept unceasingly in the most vital connection with the others, so the body of Christ can increase and become strong only when, in the loving interchange of the fellowship of the Spirit and of love, the life of the Head can flow unhindered from member to member. The observance of the Supper must be regarded as the conclusion of an alliance, not only with the Lord, but with all that sit at the table, to the effect that we shall live for one another. Not only must love to Him whose bread I eat be the object of desire, and promise, and prayer, but ,also His love to all who eat that bread along with me there.

Blessed Lord, grant unto me to feel this truth aright. As really as in this bread which Thou dost impart to me, I maintain fellowship with Thee, I maintain it also with those with whom I share the bread at the table. As I receive Thee, so do I receive them. As I desire to confess, and love, and serve Thee, so would I also them. As I would be wholly one with Thee, so would I also with them. Very humbly do I acknowledge before Thee the sins of my old natureselfishness, lovelessness, envy, wrath) indifference about others. Boldly and trustfully I entreat Thee for the love, the gentleness, the mercy, that are in Thee, to be shed abroad also in me. O Jesus, who givest Thyself to me, work in me and with me in all who eat of this one bread with me, Thine own heavenly love. Amen.


The Cup of Blessing

The cup of blessing which we bless.” 1 Corinthians 10:16.

[The Dutch version has: The cup of thanksgiving which we bless with thanksgiving.” Translator]

The, Lord’s Supper is properly a feast of thanksgiving. When He had given thanks, He brake the bread.” In like manner He took the cup, and, when He had given thanks, He gave it to them.” And after partaking of the Supper, it was when they had sung an hymn,” that they went out to the Mount of Olives. From Jewish writers, we also learn that the third cup of the Paschal feast, which was sanctified as the cup of the New Covenant, bore the name of the Cup of Thanksgiving, and that it was while it was being drunk that Psalms 116-118 were sung.

The Supper is a solemnity of redemption, the feast of the redeemed, a joyful repast at which God Himself says to us: Let us eat and be merry”; a thanksgiving banquet at which is heard a prelude of the song of the Lamb. Let me ask grace to sit down joyfully and thankfully.

So shall I honor God. He that offereth praise glorifieth Me.” God is too little honored by His people. A joyful, thankful Christian shows that God can make those that serve Him truly happy. He stirs up others to praise God along with him.

So shall I enjoy the Supper aright. Sadness cannot eat; a joyful heart enjoys food. To be thankful for what I have received and for what my Lord has prepared, is the surest way to receive more.

So shall I be strengthened for conflict and for victory. Thanks be to God, who always causeth us to triumph in Christ.” Thanks be to God, who giveth us the victory, through our Lord Jesus Christ.” If my Saviour went singing from the Lord’s Table to the conflict in Gethsemane, may I, in the joy of His redemption, follow Him with thanksgiving into every conflict to which He calls me.

So shall the Spirit of heaven dwell in my heart. The nearer to the throne of God the more thanksgiving. This I see in the Revelation. In heaven they praise God day and night: a Lord’s Supper pervaded by the spirit of thanksgiving is a foretaste of it.

And thou hast good cause to be thankful, O my soul. Look at Jesus, at His blood, at His redemption, at His love, at His blessed fellowship; and let all that is within thee praise Him. Drink, yea, drink abundantly, of the cup of thanksgiving, which we drink, giving thanks.

Blessed Lord, my Redeemer and my Friend, humbly I pray Thee: let my mouth be filled with Thy praise, all the day with Thy glory. Thou art in very truth our strength and song, for Thou hast become our salvation. Lord, teach me this day to take and drink the cup with thanksgiving, and to be joyful before Thy face. For this end, Thou hast only to unveil Thyself to me in the love that streams from Thy countenance, and the glorious redemption which Thou bringest, and my soul shall be suffused with joy. Is it not just for this end that thou didst institute the Supper? Precious Saviour, with thanksgiving shall I take the cup into my hand, in the blessed assurance that Thou wilt fill me with Thy love, my heart with Thy joy, my mouth with Thy praise. Praise the Lord, my soul, who satisfiest thy mouth with good things. Amen.


Till He Come

Ye proclaim the Lord’s death till He come.” I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.” I appoint unto you a kingdom, even as My Father appointed unto Me, that ye may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom.” 1 Corinthians 11:26; Matthew 26:29; Luke 22:29, 30.

At the Supper, Jesus points us not only backward, but also forward. >From the suffering He points to the glory; out of the depths He calls to the heights. Because the Supper is the remembrance, the communion of Jesus, the living Saviour, it sets Him before us in all that He was, and is, and shall be. It is only in the future that we can expect to have the full realization of what is begun at the Lord’s Supper. The Supper begins under the Cross with the reconciliation of the world; it is completed before the throne of glory in the new birth of the world. It is on this account that faith, according as it has experience of the power of the heavenly food, is irresistibly drawn on to the future. The true Christian has still to wait for his inheritance. Till He come” is his watchword at every observance of the Supper. At the table his Lord speaks of drinking the fruit of the vine anew in the kingdom of the Father, and of eating and drinking at His table in His kingdom. The Supper, which is itself the fulfillment of the shadow of the Paschal Feast, is again in its turn the shadow of coming blessings, the pledge of the time when they shall cry: Blessed are they that are called to the marriage Supper of the Lamb.”

What a prospect is this. There sin is for ever put away. There the whole Church is eternally united without fault or division. There the whole creation shares in the liberty of the glory of the children of God. There the eye sees the King in His beauty; and we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.

Blessed thought: it shall not always be as it is now. The blessings of the Supper are mere droppings. Jesus Himself comes once for all. Then shall I sit down with Him. Yes, He comes: and I shall see Him and know Him, and He shall see me and know me. And when I fall at His feet He will call me by my name and let me rest on His breast, and take me to be one with Him inseparably and forever.

A Prayer of Thanksgiving to the Holy Trinity

(For the Communion Sabbath Evening)

Triune, God, once again on this blessed feast day I come to pour out my full heart before Thee. I will lift up my soul to Thee in prayer and supplication, and will enjoy anew what Thou hast bestowed upon me, while I praise Thee for it.

Receive my thanks, God and Father of the Lord Jesus, for the wonderful love Thou hast showed to me. That Thou hast prepared for me in Thine heart a place next Thine only-begotten Son, that Thou hast seen meet to honor me with the name and the rights of a child, that Thou hast been pleased to seal to me this privilege all this day by imparting to me the children’s; bread: for this my soul desires to praise Thee. O my Father, I will place myself anew before Thee as Thy child, to delight myself in Thee, to dedicate myself to Thee as a living sacrifice: O my Father, to live wholly for Thee, to honor Thee the whole day with a heart full of joy in Thyself, to keep myself ever burning on the altar as a thank offering by fire: how my heart longs after this. Father, receive the praise, the thanks, the love of the child whom Thou hast this day blessed, and grant me grace to walk from day to day with this song in my heart: Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift.”

And what shall I say unto Thee, O my Jesus, Son of the Father, for what I have this day again received from Thee. O how I praise Thee for the love wherewith Thou hast loved me. Precious Saviour, Thou hast given Thyself unto me to be mine forever. The bond that unites Thee to me is not broken in eternity; for the bond is Thy love, which is stronger than death. Yea, the bond which Thy love has formed is Thine own Divine life. The life that is in Thee, Thou hast given to be in me: Thou hast made me one with Thyself: I am Thy flesh and bone. Son of God, my soul cannot conceive it: I can only bow in abasement, and surrender myself anew to Thee. O my Lord, Thou desirest to have me wholly: here am I to be wholly taken possession of by Thee, and to be filled with the Spirit whom Thou hast given.

And how shall I praise Thee, O Spirit of the Father and the Son, for what Thou art to me again this day. By Thee I possess and enjoy the Father and the Son. By Thee I taste the powers of the heavenly life. Every blessing which I receive from the Father and the Son I have through Thee. Thou workest in me by Thy Divine power all that I need in the spiritual life. What I have this day received and enjoyed, that Thou hast wrought in me; that Thou wilt preserve and strengthen, till I become fully partaker of the love of the Father and the grace of the Son. O Holy Spirit of God, my soul praises Thee. How long-suffering and patient hast Thou been in spite of all my sluggishness and folly. With the Father and the Son I honor Thee, I love Thee, I delight in Thee and in Thy fellowship.

Triune God of the Covenant, receive this renewed dedication of myself to Thee. Thou art all my salvation, my everlasting portion. O confirm in the most effectual way the sealing of Thy grace bestowed upon me this day, and let me now as Thy sworn ally go hence in the might of the Lord and making mention of Thy righteousness, yea, Thine alone. Amen.


The Week after the Supper

Too soon we rise: the symbols disappear.

The feast, though not the love, is past and gone;

The bread and wine remove, but thou art here,

Nearer than ever, still my Shield and Sun.

I have no help but thine: nor do I need

Another arm save Thine to lean upon;

It is enough, my Lord, enough indeed;

My strength is in Thy might, Thy might alone.

Mine is the sin, but Thine the righteousness;

Mine is the guilt, but thine the cleansing blood;

Here is my robe, my refuge and my peace

Thy blood, Thy righteousness, O Lord my God.

Feast after feast thus comes and passes by,

Yet, passing, points to the glad feast above,

Giving sweet foretaste of the festal joy,

The Lamb’s great bridal feast of bliss and love.

Horatius Bonar.

Monday Morning – The Power of the Food

My flesh is meat indeed and My blood is drink indeed. He that eateth My flesh and drinketh My blood abideth in Me and I in Him.” John 6:55.

Life must be fed with life. In corn the life of nature is hid, and we enjoy the power of that life in bread. As with the body, so is it with the spirit. The body is fed by the visible, the changeable life: the spirit must be fed with the invisible, unchangeable life of heaven.

It was to bring to us this heavenly life that the Son of God descended to earth. It was to make this life accessible to us that He died like the seed corn in the earth, that His body was broken like the bread grain. It is to communicate this life to us and to make it our own, that He gives Himself to us in the Supper.

By His death Jesus took away the cause of our everlasting hunger and sorrow, namely, sin. The spirit of man, his undying part, can live only by God, who only hath immortality.” Sin separated man from God, and an eternal hunger and an eternal thirst of death were now his portion. He lost God, and nothing in the world can satisfy his infinite cravings. Then comes Jesus. He takes sin away and brings it to nought in His body, and gives us that body to eat and to do away with sin in us. Since in Him dwells the fullness of the Godhead bodily, whenever I receive and enjoy Him, not only have I the forgiveness of sins, but the life of God, the life of heaven is implanted within me.

Wonderful grace: may I understand it aright. The man who uses the Lord’s Supper aright is one that is distinguished from other men by the fact that he has partaken of the Bread of Life. He has really received Jesus Christ into his innermost being, and with Him the powers of the eternal life, as this is the life of heaven. It is to bring His own eternal life near to us, that God has given His Son as the food of the soul.

Glorious food: wonderful heavenly bread: what a heavenly life it imparts to us. Love to God, blessed rest, real holiness, inward power, all that characterizes the life that is enjoyed in heaven,all that shall be in me the fruit of this Bread of Life.

Let me remember and believe the wonderful virtue of the food with which I am fed. Let me have strong expectations that this food shall work out its divine energy in me. Let me walk joyfully and full of courage, knowing that I can do all things through Christ that strengtheneth me. For He gives me strength. He dwells in me. He is my food.


O how wonderful is Thy grace, my precious Lord, that Thou Thyself hast become my food, which abides in me, gives me strength, and upholds and increases the life that is in me.

Lord, I have but one boon to crave of Thee this morning. It is this: that Thou wouldst increase my faith, that I may know aright what Thou art prepared to be to me. I feel that this is especially to be blamed as my weakness that I do not understand what Thou art willing to be and to do for me.

Precious Lord, make me to know this. Strengthen my faith to say continually: Jesus abides in me, Jesus is my food: fed with such nourishment, my life shall be powerful for the glorifying of God. Strengthen my faith to appropriate Thee continually for all my needs. Thou art the Provision in every necessity, the satisfaction of every desire. Strengthen my faith, Lord, to think no more of my weakness but of Thine own power: for Thou, O my Lord, Thou art always my food, my power of life. And strengthen my faith especially to receive this my heavenly food daily as its nourishment, to open my mouth wide every day, in order that it may be filled with Thee, with Thyself.

Lord Jesus, my food, which abides in me, Thou wilt surely do this for me. Amen.

Tuesday Morning – Sanctification

Sin no more.” John 5:14, 8:11.

Thus Jesus spake to the sick man whom He had healed at the pool of Bethesda. Thus He spake also to the woman whom He liberated from the hand of her persecutors. Thus He speaks to every soul to which He has shown mercy, whose sickness He has healed, and whose life He has redeemed from destruction. Thus He speaks to everyone who goes forth from the blessed feast of the Supper: Go hence: sin no more.”

It was in order to save from sin that God sent His Son, that Jesus gave His life and His blood, that the Spirit came down from heaven. The Redeemer cannot suffer a, ransomed soul to go from the table of the covenant, without hearing anew this glorious word: Henceforthlet there be no more sin.” In the presence of the Cross and what thy sin cost Him, in view of His love and all the blessings which He has bestowed upon you, this word comes with divine power: Go hence: sin no more.”

But, Lord, must I not always sin? In me dwelleth no good thing. I thought that the Christian continues to sin to the end.”

And have I not redeemed thee from the power of sin? Does not My Spirit dwell in you? Am not I Myself your sanctification?”

But, Lord, can anyone, then, in this life be entirely holy?”

The sinful nature you shall continue to have, but its workings can be overcome. You may become more holy every day. I am prepared to do for you above all that you dare ask or think.”

O my beloved Lord, I would so very fain be holy. Thou knowest how sin grieves me, how I pant after holiness. O, pray, teach me how I can be holy.”

Soul, I am thy sanctification. Abide in Me and thou shalt be holy. Entrust thyself to Me: I shall keep you holy. Believe in Me, that I shall fulfill My word. Let My word, My will, My mind, keep thy thoughts, thy heart occupied. Let Me dwell in thine heartthy heart be full of Me: that will keep sin outside.”

O Lord, may it only be so in my case.”

Soul, fall down before Me, bring thyself to Me in sacrifice. Be not faithless, but believing. Look not upon thy weakness, or upon all that which is dead. Give Me the honor of being strong in faith, and confident that what I have promised, I am mighty and faithful to do, and it shall be to thee according to thy faith.”

Lord, I come. I fall down before Thee to dedicate myself now as a sacrifice to Thee.”


(of a soul that surrenders itself to the Lord to be purified from every sin)

Blessed Lord, Thou art my sanctification. From Thee I have not only the command, but in Thee the power to go hence and to sin no more. Lord, now I give myself anew to Thee, and declare myself ready to be purified from every sin.

Of every known sin, of which I am already convinced, I do this very moment make renunciation. However deeply it may be rooted, however little I feel power to overcome it, in Thy name, my blessed Redeemer, I Hereby renounce it. I surrender myself to Thee to combat and overcome it in Thy strength. Lord, here am I, in order that Thou mayest cleanse me from all unrighteousness. Lord, this is my prayer: whatever it may cost me, through whatever pain or humiliation it may be achieved, take my sin from me. Lord, spare no single sin: make me holy.

And no less for the sin in me that is still unknown to myself,sin which Thy people or the world or Thou Thyself mayest see in me, but which my own self-love has not yet been willing to acknowledge, I place myself in Thy hands. Lord, make it known to me: use friend or foe to discover it, but, pray, let not my sin continue longer hid from me. I would fain know it, in order that I may bring it to Thee, and that Thou mayest cleanse me from it.

And strengthen my faith, precious Saviour, that I may very joyfully reckon on Thee to show Thyself to me as my sanctification. Thou art my Surety, who has not only atoned for the old guilt, but art also in a position to secure that every day and every moment the requirements of God’s law may be fulfilled by me. Lord, cause me to believe this, and by a life of unceasing trust to experience how constantly Thou wilt keep and cleanse the soul. Then shall I go away from every observance of the Supper, to show anew that thou art my daily bread, and my daily strength: that Thy life is the life of my life and that Thou hearest my prayer:

Jesus, come and live in me.

That I may ever, holy be.”

Lord, here am I now, surrendered to Thee, to be kept and sanctified in Thee. On Thy word, I confidently cast myself. Amen.

Wednesday Morning – Obedience

Jesus said: My meat is to do the will of Him that sent Me, and to finish His work.” John 4:34.

I have meat to eat that ye know not of.” Jesus had a hidden manna that He received from the Father, and that was the secret of His wonderful power. The nutriment of His life He received from God in heaven. No one could have discovered what it was; but when He tells it to us, it appears so simple that many a one gets puzzled over it. My meat is to do the will of Him that sent Me, and to finish His work.”

Food is the meeting of need, satisfaction. The hunger of Jesus, the yearning of Jesus, extended only to one thing: to please God. Without that He could not rest; in that one thing, He had all He required. And when He found the will of God, He did it, and thereby at once fed His soul with its appropriate food, and was satisfied.

Food involves appropriation, the exercise of fellowship. The weak soul, who truly surrenders himself to do the will of God, becomes thereby wonderfully strengthened. Obedience to God, instead of exhausting the energies, only renews them. The doing of God’s will was the food that Jesus had.

Food involves quickening and joy. Eating is not only necessary as medicine for strength, but is also in itself something that is acceptable, and imparts pleasure. To observe a feast in the spirit is itself equivalent to food. Obedience to the will of God was Jesus’ highest joy.

As One who did the will of God, Jesus became our Saviour (Heb. 10:9, 10). He therefore that trusts in Him, receives Him as the fulfiller of the will of God, and with Him receives also the will of God as his life.

Now, then, Jesus has become my meat; and He Himself dwells in me as the power of my life. And now I know the means by which this life must be fed and strengthened within me. The doing of God’s will is my meat. The doing of God’s will was for Jesus the bread of heaven; and since I have now received Jesus Himself as my heavenly bread, He teaches me to eat what He Himself ate: He teaches me to do the will of God. That is the meat of my soul. I received the same Spirit that was in Him, and it became truth for me, as for Him. My meat, the highest satisfaction of my soul, fellowship with God, renewal of my energies, an unbroken feast of joy, is to do the will of Him that sent me, and to finish His work.” Thus the feast of the Supper is prolonged in the continued life of obedience to the will of God.


Eternal God, I thank Thee that in Thy Son Thou hast enabled us here on earth to contemplate the glorious life of heaven. I thank Thee for the sight of Him who, in the execution of Thy will found His meat, His life. Lord God, in the Supper Thou hast given me this Son in order that His life may become my life, and His Spirit my spirit. Lord, make me so thoroughly one with this Jesus, that I also, like Him, shall find my meat in the will of the Father.

Lord Jesus, it is a continued feast that Thou hast prepared for me. Every day I also may do the will of my Father. May this obedience be to me the continuation of the banquet of the Supper. Make my soul crave with an insatiable hunger to know the will of God in everything. Do Thou Thyself with Thy Divine power fulfill in me all obedience, and let my inner life thereby become all the stronger and more joyful.

Lord, I desire to confess before Thee how little I still have of true spiritual insight into the will of God. Lord, give me of Thy Spirit, in order that I may be transformed by the renewing of my mind, and so prove what is that good and perfect and acceptable will of God. Bring me to that blessed frame of mind in which, like Thee, my Lord, I shall refuse to do anything, unless I know that it is the will of the Father. Strengthen my faith, that by the Spirit Thou mayest make me to understand this will more fully, and in order that I may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.

O, my Saviour, how shall my soul then be satisfied and praise Thee when all that I do is only obedience to the prayer: Our Father, Thy will be done, as in heaven so on earth.”

Lord, give me always this food. Amen.

Thursday Morning – Work

If any will not work, neither let him eat.” 2 Thessalonians 3:10.

That is true of the poor sluggard: he has nothing to eat. It is also true of the hireling: he cannot expect that his master will give him food to eat if he does not do his work. It is also true of the rich sluggard: although he has abundance, if he does not work he lacks the hunger that makes food acceptable.

And it is no less true, on the other hand, of spiritual food. The Kingdom of God is not meat and drink: there least of all may the bread of idleness be eaten. Israel had to eat the Passover, with loin girt, sandals on the feet, and staff in hand, ready to undertake the journey to Canaan in the strength of the food enjoyed.

Now, may not this fact discover to us the reason why, for many, the blessing imparted at the Supper is not greater than it is? They desire to partake of it in order to have an enjoyable festal hour, to be satisfied with blessed pleasures and glorious experiences. But they do not reflect that the Lord has prepared food for His children that they may be strengthened to go and work in His vineyard. They do not work for their Lord: they do not know what they ought to do: they do not consider the matter: and thus they have often to complain of darkness and loss of blessing at the Lord’s Supper.

If any will not work, neither let him eat”: If any will work, let him eat.”

Alike in nature and in grace there is one law. He that desires to eat for the sake only of getting the food and for the satisfaction of his appetite, shall speedily lose the enjoyment of the food. He that eats to become strong and to work, shall find the food always accompanied with relish and imparting strength.

Christian, once again you have eaten: now is the time for work. Work the work of your Lord: live and work for the interests of His kingdom, and He will see to it that you have your food, and that the food will prove to you a source of relish and blessing. As it is in the service of an earthly parent, so is it in that of the Heavenly Father: the best preparation for the Lord’s Supper is to have done faithfully the will of the Father, and to have finished His work. It was when Abraham returned from the campaign for the deliverance of Lot that Melchisedek, the priest of the Most High God, set before him bread and wine. To him that overcometh,” says Jesusto him that works and strives and overcomes”will I give to eat of the hidden manna.”


Holy Lord my Redeemer and my Friend, it is my desire to work for Thee. I know that Thou hast given Thyself for us for this end, that Thou mightest have us for Thyself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. I know that there is no blessedness save in doing the will of the Father and finishing the work: He has given me. Lord, I come to Thee, in the joy and courage and power that the food which Thou Thyself hast prepared as the nutriment of my soul imparts, to ask of Thee my work.

I believe, Lord, that there is work for me, and that Thou wilt point out that work to me. Often have I desired to work for Thee according to my own feelings, and I have failed to win success. Lord Jesus, do Thou point out to me the work that I must do. Thou art my food and my strength. Thou art also my light and my leader. Let Thy Spirit so dwell in me that I shall be able to discern His voice, and, stimulated by Him, may carry out my work for souls.

Lord, I have eaten the bread of heaven: I will live to do the work of Heaven. Heavenly food brings heavenly strength, and heavenly strength brings heavenly work. Lord, make me to be Thy fellow-laborer, and teach me, like Thyself, to give my life to the work of the Kingdom of Heaven. Let my greatest joy be like that which prevails in heaven over the sinner that repenteth.

That work will cause me to feel the need of Thy divine power. That work will prepare me also to enjoy Thy food aright. That work will make every observance of the Supper more glorious for me, as a still deeper exercise of communion with Thee. So be it, O my Lord. Amen.

Friday Morning – Fellowship with Jesus

And lo, I am with you alway (all the days), even unto the end of the world.” Matthew 28:20.

For you”: that was one of the words of Jesus at the table.

With you”: this is no less His promise, when you go away from the table. As real and complete and certain as His suretyship was, when He bore sin and gave His life for you, so real and certain is the fellowship which He holds out to you when He says, I am with you all the days.” If the for you” was in every respect undivided and all sufficient, He means the with you” to be in every respect just as undivided and inseparable.

And the one is, like the other, a word of faith: a word that unfolds itself only to faith. For you” was in the first instance a truth that you found it impossible to receive. But the Spirit of God brought you up to the point of reception, and you were enabled to say, Yes: Jesus for mein my place: it is all finished for me.” And this is now the sure and deep confidence of your soul. Even thus shall it be with this other word, with you.” Too often it appears as if it were not true, as if it could not possibly be true. At other times you could not live long if you felt yourself to be so sinful and miserable as you are. And yet it is true that Jesus is with you. Only you do not know it, you do not enjoy it, because you do not believe it. But as soon as you learn to rely, not upon your own feeling or on your own experience, but on what He has promised, and to direct your expectations according to faith in that which He hath said, namely, that He will be with you, it will become your blessedness. The with you” is just as certain and complete as the for you.”

I am with you.” Jesus Himself abides with His own: the certainty of His presence and love, which will not abandon us. He, the Living, the Loving, the Almighty One: He Himself is with us, and in a position to make Himself known to us.

With you all the days:” not only on the day of the Supper; not only on the festal days of life; but all the days, without one single exception. And thus, also, all the day. Whether I think of it or not, there He is the whole daynear me, with me. Not on my own faithfulness, but in that faithfulness of Thine which awakens my confidence and bestows on me Thine own nearness, I have the assurance of an unbroken fellowship with Thee, my beloved Lord.


Blessed Saviour, receive my thanks also for this word, with you.” And teach me, Lord, to make it my own in faith. For this end I will during these moments set myself in silence before Thee, and will wait upon Thee. Lord, speak Thyself to me these words I am with you all the days.”

Lord, what a source of joy and strength shall it prove to me when I know that as Thou art unchangeable, so also is Thy presence with me unchangeable. As little as Thou wilt for a single moment leave the right hand of the Father in heaven, wilt Thou leave Thy brother upon the earth: Thou abidest at my right hand. Thou hast said it, and therefore I know that it is true: I will never leave you nor forsake you I am with you all the days.” Precious Saviour, let Thy voice penetrate into the deepest recesses of my heart, and let my life this day, the whole day, and every day, be in Thy presence the presence of Him who says, I am with you.”

Alas, Lord, what have I not lost by not believing that word! And how have I grieved and dishonored Thee. Thou wast with me: Thy voice of love said without ceasing, I am with you”; and yet through my proneness to unbelief, I heard it not. Often did I pray and beseech Thee that I might have Thee, and yet at the same time I practically despised Thee by not believing Thy word. O my Saviour, let it no longer be so. Strengthen my faith, and as Thou has taught me to rely upon the word of complete atonement, For you,” let the word of complete fellowship, with you all the days,” become my joy and my strength. Yea, cause me to understand that as the for you” makes a complete provision for all the sins of the past, so the with you” makes a provision equally complete for all the cares and sins of the future.

Yes, Lord, in Thy strength it shall be so. I will trust and not be afraid. Whatever or of whatever kind the days may be that await me, Thy word, with you all the days,” shall be sufficient for me. In Thy nearness, in fellowship with Thee, or rather in Thy fellowship with me, my life shall become a foretaste of the consummation when I shall say: And lo, O Lord, I am with Thee for all eternity!” Amen.

Saturday Morning – The End

The Lord will perfect that which concerneth me.” Being confident of this very thing, that He which began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ.” Psalm 138:8; Philippians 1:6.

How many times has the believer gone from the Lord’s Table with the sorrowful thought, Shall I indeed continue standing? Shall my resolutions and promises not be frustrated? Who tells me that I shall persevere unto the end? I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul” (1 Samuel 27:1).

It was just in such a crisis that David said, I will cry unto God Most High, unto God that performeth all things for me” (Ps. 57:2). It is in God alone that the Christian has the assurance of his perseverance. To see from the beginning to the end, yea, to be Himself alike the Beginning and the End,” is one of the glorious attributes of the God who dwells in eternity. And it is one of the characteristics of His work, that, while man often begins without ending, with Him the end is as certain as the beginning. What He has begun He will complete.”

O my soul, if thou wouldst enjoy the comfort of this promise, be much occupied with this fact: He has begun.” The Christian speaks too often of his conversion and his faith and his self-surrender. Contemplating all this from the side of man, he keeps himself too little occupied with the thought: HE has begun.” My soul, understand what this means: He has sought me and found me and made me His own, and what He has thus done to me points back to that which He did for me: He gave His own Son, and by His blood He bought for Himself as His own possession. And that again points back to eternity. He chose me and loved me before the foundation of the world. My soul, ponder what this means: He has begun.”

Then shalt thou be able joyfully to exclaim, He will perfect:” the Lord will perfect that which concerneth me.” Then shalt thy life become a life of humility and thanksgiving and confidence and joy and love. Thou seest that there is nothing in thyself, and thou learnest to expect all from God, and thank Him for all: thou learnest to rely upon Him in everything. And the end will be to you as certain as the beginning, because the end as well as the beginning has its root and stability in God. The self-same faith that, looking back, acknowledges the beginning as God’s, also looks forward, and in the eternal and unchangeable God finds the end secured. What He has begun He will perfect.”


Lord God, Thou art without beginning and without end. For Thou art Thyself alike the beginning and the end. Thou art the Eternal, with whom there is no yesterday and no to-morrow. Thou art Thyself yesterday, to-day, and forever. With Thee there is no changeableness nor shadow of turning. Lord, in Thee alone Thy believing people find their comfort and their security. Nothing that we have done or still desire to do, nothing that we are or shall be, can give us rest. But, thanks be to Thy name, Thou Thyself, the Eternal, with Thine unchangeableness, Thou art our rest and our strength, In Thee alone and in Thy faithfulness does our life become freed from all fear.

Father, give me to understand this. Make me to know Thee as the God who has begun a good work in me. Let Thy Spirit seal it to me that Thou receivest me as the possession which Thou hast bought for Thyself, which is precious to Thee, and which no one shall pluck out of Thy hands. And then teach me, in the midst of all the sense of my own weakness and the power of sin which I have, always to trust and always to exclaim: He that began a good work in me will perfect it.”

Father, once again I thank Thee for the Supper that has been observed. Blessed Perfecter, perfect in me also Thy work of grace. Teach me to go forward on my way, full of joy, full of confidence and courage, full of thanksgiving and love. My God, become Thou everything to me: the God who has done everything, the God who will do everything, the God to whom all is due. and give me thereafter to await the glorious end, when I too shall be in perfection what I was at the beginning, and every day hope more and more to be, a monument of the grace of God on which he that runneth may read: From Him and by Him and to Him are all things: to Him be glory for ever and ever.” Amen.


Throughout the preceding pages the author makes such pointed reference to the statements of the Directory of Public Worslnp in the Dutch Reformed Church that bear on preparation for the Lord’s Supper, and also to the relevant questions of the Heidelberg Catechism, that it has been thought of advantage to the reader to have these passages before him.

I. Self-Examanation

True proving of ourselves consists of three parts:

1. In the first place, let everyone in his own heart reflect on his sin and condemnation, in order that he may loathe himself and humble himself before God: seeing that the wrath of God against sin is so great that, rather than suffer it to remain unpunished, He punished it in His dear Son Jesus Christ, in the bitter and ignominous death of the Cross.

2. In the second place, let everyone examine his heart as to whether he also believes this sure promise of God, that only on the ground of the suffering and death of Jesus Christ all his sins are forgiven him, and the perfect righteousness of Christ is bestowed upon him and imputed to him as his own: yea, as completely as if he himself in his own person had atoned for all his sins and performed all righteousness.

3. In the third place, let everyone examine his conscience as to whether he is prepared, henceforth and with his whole life, to manifest true thankfulness toward God the Lord, and to walk uprightly in God’s sight.

All who are so disposed, God will assuredly receive into His favor, and regard as worthy communicants at the table of His Son Jesus Christ. On the other hand, those that have no such testimony in their hearts, eat and drink judgment to themselves.”

II. Christ in the Supper

Question 76. What is meant by eating the crucified body and drinking the shed blood of Christ?

Answer. It is not only to receive with a believing heart the whole suffering and dying of Christ, and thereby to obtain the forgiveness of sins and life eternal, but moreover, also, to be so united more and more to His sacred body by the Holy Ghost, who dwells both in Christ and in us, that although He is in Heaven and we are upon the earth, we are nevertheless flesh of His flesh and bone of His bones, and live and are governed forever by One Spirit, as the members of one body are by one soul.

Question 79. Why, then, doth Christ call the bread His body and the cup His blood, or the New Testament in His blood; and St. Paul, the communion of the body and blood of Christ?

Answer. Christ speaks thus not without great cause, namely, not only that He may thereby teach us that like as bread and wine sustain this temporal life, so also His crucified body and shed blood are the true meat and drink of our souls unto eternal life; but, much more that by this visible sign and pledge He may assure us that we are as really partakers of His true body and blood, through the working of the Holy Spirit, as with the bodily mouth we receive these holy tokens in remembrance of Him; and that all His suffering and obedience are as surely our own as if we ourselves in our own person had suffered all and done enough.”