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Sunday, January 08, 2017

Impressions, by Martin Wells Knapp, 30

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 revelation of the Christian's privilege and his wealth in these promises, opened up to my own mind a vision of wonderful possibilities which had hitherto been hid.

It is just as glorious a privilege to trust these promises for guidance as it is to trust other promises for salvation.

Glory be to God for the abundant provision He has made, not only to cover all our sin but to supply all our need.

2. Inspired Examples. Enoch was so divinely led that he continually "walked with God," and followed His counsels so fully that there is no record of his slightest deviation.

Abraham not only received great spiritual blessings, but appropriated God's guidance so
completely that he was divinely directed in his travels, in choosing' his homestead, in his knowledge of the doom of Sodom, and in accumulating an immense fortune.

The stories of Jacob, of Joseph, of Moses, of a nation led by a pillar of cloud by day and of fire by night, are replete with illustrations of how God's people have looked to and been marvelously led by Him.

All the mistakes, the wanderings and the captivity of His people came, because they failed to hear and heed His voice; but whenever they listened He revealed Himself and granted the needed wisdom.

The explicit directions which He unfolded for the construction of the Tabernacle and afterwards of the Temple, are but illustrations of His ability and willingness to give minute directions at every needed point, no matter how small it may be, to all who are "workers together with Him."

Joshua must have been fully instructed, or he could not have fully followed. Daniel, divinely directed, was meet for every emergency, and his wisdom was a wonder to the world.

Not only were the illustrious lights of Old Testament history thus divinely led, but there were also numberless stars of lesser magnitude whose beams were hid in the obscurity of the humbler walks of life; yet who, guided by God's hand, moved and shone "as the sun when he goeth forth in his might."

They were so firm in their convictions that their actions were prompted by the Unseen One, that rather than do violence to their divine instructions they submitted to be "stoned," "sawn asunder," and "slain with the sword." Oh, for an army of such heroes. Souls so possessed of the idea that they are actuated in all things by the power that upholds suns and systems, that they will die rather than turn traitor to it.

The New Testament firmament is no less resplendent with stars, whose orbits are divinely made, than is the Old. It opens with Joseph, Mary, Simeon and the wise men from the East, who will ever beam brightly as examples of those who have tested God's promises to fully guide. The Gospels shine with the dazzling splendor of Him who, in His humanity as our example, ever so fully learned the Father's will that He always said and did those things, and those only that were "pleasing in His sight."

The Acts of the Apostles teems with telling incidents illustrating this principle. The Apostles were "filled with the Spirit" and "led by the Spirit." They could not have been led by Him had they not first have learned His leadings.

The promise which Jesus gave them that He would teach them how to answer their enemies, and that the Spirit of the Father should speak through them, found such fruitful fulfillment that all their adversaries "were not able to resist the wisdom and spirit" by which they spake.

They were gifted with such divine wisdom that they outwitted both ecclesiastical intrigue and Roman power, and while the cry "crucify Him" was still echoing from Mount Calvary, they had established a kingdom which will flourish when Jerusalem and Rome are forgotten -- even forever.

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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