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Sunday, December 18, 2016

Impressions, by Martin Wells Knapp, 27

In a previous excerpt, Knapp stated that there are four features of "impressions" from God. These are Scriptural; Right (consistent with good morals); Providential (in harmony with God's will); and Reasonable. His discussion continues:

The Holy Spirit is an unerring guide, and he who detects and turns from every wrong impression and fully follows Him will be led into "all truth."

It should be the aim of every Christian to overcome inattention and forgetfulness and be thus led. May we each so "try the Spirits," and "watch and pray," that, like God's people of old, we may see our "pillar of cloud by day and of fire by night," and thus led in a "plain path" be enabled to "stand perfect and complete in all the will of God."

In conclusion, let us again review the rightful tests of all impressions, and ever keep in mind that none should be acted upon which does not bear the divine stamps -- S. R. P. R.

S. -- Scriptural. In harmony with God's will as revealed in His Word.

R. -- Right. In harmony with God's will as revealed in man's moral consciousness by the law of God, which is written within his moral nature.

P. -- Providential. In harmony with God's will as revealed in His providential dealings.

R. -- Reasonable. In harmony with God's will as revealed to man's reasoning powers, illuminated by Holy Spirit.

All impressions which have not this stamp divine are as valueless as railroad tickets without the stamp of the issuing office. The reason why many people are thwarted in their plans and compelled to get off from trains of action upon which they are attempting to ride, is because they act upon impressions which have not this sacred seal.

When an impression has been tried, an is known to be of God, the whole soul should be thrown into it, and it should be firmly, boldly and persistently acted upon. The Christian then should "set his face like a flint," and turn neither to the right hand nor the left. His feelings may weep, his imaginations fade, perverted Scripture protest, his infatuations die in despair, his impulses and passions be disappointed, his appetites complain, his prejudices and preconceived notions be abandoned, his friends dismayed, his dreams, signs and chance happenings all prove false prophets, and "Satan rage, and fiery darts be hurled;" yet he will follow "anywhere and everywhere" that God may lead. "Delivered from every false way," he will test the blessedness of the words of the wise Christian philosopher who said: "Happy is he who is not led by mere sights and sounds; not by strange momentary impressions which may come from the disordered senses, from the world or from the devil, but by that clear light which illuminates the intellect, the conscience and the heart; which is ever consistent with itself and with God's Word and providences, and which has, in reality, for its author the Comforter, the Holy Ghost.

"He will also prove the preciousness of the promise which declares: 'The Lord shall guide thee continually and satisfy thy soul in drouth, and make fat thy bones; and thou shalt be like a watered garden and like a spring of water whose waters fail not."' Isaiah 58:11.

Glory be to God that such an experience is possible for every one of His children.

Excerpted from Impressions, by Martin Wells Knapp. Original publication date, 1892. Public domain. My source is here. The previous post in the series is here.

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