Archives for the month of: February, 2013

Today In The WORD
Wells by faith!
Verse for Today: Sunday, February 24, 2013
Genesis 26:32 – That day Isaac’s servants came and told him about the well they had dug. They said, “We’ve found water!”

The enemy of our souls will always try to deny us our rights and privileges in this world. When circumstances, situations and people take away what rightly belongs to us, we tend to fall into the pits of depression or revenge and thus waste our spiritual energy. Isaac is a great example of a man who was unwilling to get into the pits that others dug for him. When there was contest about what was rightly his, Isaac moved away to find water in fresh wells. But sure enough the enemy’s agents went after him with false claims. But the relentless Isaac attempted to dig more wells by faith and thus defeated his contestants. God rewarded him for his simple faith and patience. By faith, Isaac forsook Esek (argument) and Sitnah (hostility) and moved on to Rehoboth (open space) and finally reached Beersheba where His God helped him found water. He learned that arguments and hostility might make him win the battle, but lose the war. He left his rights behind by faith because he knew that when he hands his situations to the Lord, He will lead him to fresh fields with fresh blessings. He believed that the God of his father Abraham will not deprive him of water. He also believed that His God will rule and overrule circumstances and situations to meet his basic needs. Isaac set an example of a man of faith who knew the joy of giving up the temporal which leads to disputes. He believed in the God of Rehoboth and Beersheba to help him find newer wells and fresh water. Today our God goes before us to show us the way to fresh supplies He has prepared for us. He teaches us to leave the temporal behind and go forward with faith to find new avenues He opens for us.

Dear friend, are you frustrated about the way your situations and circumstances deny you things are rightly yours? The world comes to contest us when we live by faith. God leads us to go forward and find new doors that He opens for us in His grace. What the world has not understood is that they will not be able to defeat us in the temporal because our focus is eternal. When circumstances and situations come to thwart us of our territories, our faith will lead us to newer fields where God has kept newer blessings for us. The enemy might fill the wells that we dig or put up claims for all our achievements. But God will lead us to newer wells of blessings that are unknown to the world. When the world lives by fortunes and luck, we live by faith and the leading of our God. Today we are in His open field which is eternal. He gives us enough for today and will give us the rest when we reach our eternal home on the basis of His oath of grace on Calvary. As we move to the new open space of Rehoboth and on to Beersheba, our Lord will show us water in the new wells that He provides for us. It is His well and His water which we receive by faith. Isaac’s well of faith at Beersheba speaks to us loudly of the water of faith that is waiting for us today. When we search for our livelihood in God’s open fields, He will lead us to His quiet waters and green pastures. He has enough water for us to quench our thirst. Let us by faith receive what He provides for us for today’s needs and trusts Him for the next drink from the fresh water of life in His well.

John 7:37 – “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink.”

Lewis and Roth

 

The I Will’s Of Christ

 

“And Jesus, moved with compassion, put forth his hand, and touched him, and saith unto him, I will; be thou clean.” (Mark 1:41)

When the Lord Jesus makes a promise, that promise is sure to be fulfilled. When He made the above promise to the leper, “immediately the leprosy departed from him” (Mark 1:42). The promise may not always be carried out as rapidly as this, but it will come.

Look at some of the wonderful “I will’s” of Christ. “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men” (Matthew 4:19) is His promise to all His true disciples (that is, those who follow Him). But first they must come to Him, and to those who come He promises, “Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out”
(John 6:37).

Another gracious promise to all who come: “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). He also promises special love to those who obey Him. “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, . . . shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him” (John 14:21).

There is a tremendous promise in John 14:13: “And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” He even emphasized it in the next verse: “If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it” (John 14:14).

He has also promised to come back again, and we can be certain He will do as He said: “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” (John 14:3). But probably the greatest of all His promises was given in His intercessory prayer. “Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory” (John 17:24). HMM

Bowl Judgment

Revelation 16:12 – After the sixth angel had emptied his bowl, four angels who had been bound in the Euphrates were set free (see Revelation 9:13). Their release caused a flood-tide of destruction to come upon the earth. These angels are the power emissaries of Satan and are extremely evil in character. Until this point, God had kept them bound for an hour, day, month, and a year. Now, the time has come in the world’s history, the hour of its greatest crisis, for those sinister forces to be set free. They are given the power to arrange the final program, and one third of the world population is slain.

Why were they bound at this particular location? Because, this is where history began, and this is where it will end. Eden was located here and sin began here. The first murder was committed here. Nimrod lived and began his wicked religion here. And finally, the Tower of Babel, which brought God’s judgment, was built here.

 

Seventh Bowl of Wrath

The seventh bowl of wrath pours forth voices, thunder, lightning, and a great earthquake – the greatest the world has ever known. Jerusalem was divided into three parts. Cities throughout the world were demolished. Both islands and mountains disappeared. Pieces of ice weighing 100 pounds were falling from heaven. Men blasphemed God as a result of this. There was no thought of repentance.

Having said this, the serious student of prophecy would be remiss if he were to ignore the signs that are here being fulfilled before our eyes. When the Lord came to earth the first time, the angels sang, “Glory to God, peace on earth and goodwill toward men.” When He comes to earth the second time, universal glory will be given to God, and there will be peace on earth and good will among men for 1,000 years.

When the Lord returns, the world will be in a disastrous mess. It will be a little more than a pile of rubble. When the Lord comes, things will be at their worst. During the millennial age, He will remove the curse and restore the earth to its original state, which will be paradise. The Lord is coming. He is even at the door, and “I can almost hear His foot fall” (see Luke 21:9-31). The Rapture will precede His coming to the earth by seven years.Revelation 22 says, “Behold I come quickly.” Even so, come, Lord Jesus.

 

The Opening of the Seven Seals

As each of the seals is broken, restraint is increasingly removed from the earth. The earth will reap the fall harvest for man’s sin.

 

The White Horse

The first horse, white in color, bursts upon the scene with drumming hoofs. The rider, the Antichrist, wins victories without bloodshed. He goes forth conquering and to conquer (seeRevelation 6:2). It is important to note that the rider has a bow, but no arrows. He wages a “cold war.” Nations submit to him grudgingly, but peacefully.

He offers Israel protection for seven years. For three and a half years, as his power increases, an uneasy peace settles on the world. The Antichrist rules unchallenged, disgorging blasphemous philosophies and anti-Christian ideologies, preparing men’s hearts for the devil’s gospel and their ultimate reception of the strong delusion (see 2 Thessalonians 2:3-12).

 

The Red Horse

The rider of the red horse introduces a war of such magnitude that it will make all other global wars pale in significance.

 

The Black Horse

The black horse represents famine. The rider had a scale with which he weighed out the staple foods of the working class, namely wheat and barley. Notice that the food of the upper class, namely oil and wine, were not touched. This points to the blighted prosperity of the last days. It represents famine and economic disaster.

 

The Pale Horse

The pale horse is the color of death. The rider of this horse was Death, and Hades followed him. War and famine have always plagued mankind. At this point, a new horrendous and terrifying element is introduced: pestilence. One quarter of the world’s population will die. To put this in perspective, consider the fact that at the close of World War I, twenty million people died of influenza and six million more died of typhus.

The shadow of the pale horse and its rider will lie like a black cloud across the world. Then there will come the “beasts of the earth.” The most destructive creature on earth is not the lion, tiger, or bear, but rather the rat. Rats are unsurpassed in their reproductive capabilities. Rats carry as many as 35 different diseases. Their fleas have been known to carry the bubonic plague, which, for instance, killed one-third of the population of 14thcentury Europe. Their fleas have also been known to carry typhus, which in four centuries has killed an estimated 200 million people. Rats also devour and contaminate food supplies.

 

The Judgment of God

Revelation 19:17-19 describes the “Supper of the great God.” This event is also the end of the “times of the Gentiles.” Daniel depicts this same scene in Daniel 2:34-35. The stone, cut without hands, smites the iron and clay feet of the image and grinds them to powder. This stone, Daniel continues, became a mountain and filled the whole earth. Here, Daniel undoubtedly describes the King of kings and His kingdom.

 

This event is also a fulfillment of Matthew 22:42 which says, “The Stone which the builders rejected has become the chief corner stone.” This Stone is being rejected today. Both Jews and Gentiles alike reject Him. Should anyone meet the Lord as an enemy, He will “grind them to powder” (Matthew 21:44). “God will not be mocked, whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.:

Daniel Snadden

The life story of Harry Ironside cannot be punctuated with his inner thoughts and general philosophy. It is a tale of a man in motion. He had little time for the kind of meditative essays that may be found in the writings of the Puritans and the saintly authors of the nineteenth century. This is not to say that Harry did not commune with God. How could a man live in the Scriptures as he did without honoring and adoring the Persons of the Godhead—God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit? He delighted in knowing by his own experience the favor of God, a fact that is easily discernible in his diaries.

Today has tried me much but “I will trust, and not be afraid.” . . . Thou knowest, O Lord.

My 38th birthday. Surely more than half my life is done.22 Even though the Saviour’s coming should not take place in my time, it would seem to be very near. Oh, to use the time that remains more for God than the time that is past.

Cares weigh my spirit, and I find it difficult to rise above them. Lord, help me to confide in Thee more implicitly.

“Reckon ye yourselves dead indeed unto sin” (Romans 6:11). I feel very keenly how feebly I enter into all this.

Harry was devoted to his family, and while the relationship between him and Helen was not always smooth, this is not astonishing. It is not that Helen was unsympathetic with his calling or not proud of his accomplishments. However, Harry’s zeal for Christ and conscientiousness in exercising it took him away from home so much—sometimes for weeks or months—that life was not easy for his wife. This may be somewhat of an understatement. The responsibility of bringing up and disciplining two young boys was entirely hers. Furthermore, for more than twenty years the household was run on a hand-to-mouth financial program. This disturbed Helen. It is easy to cite an old adage that “all is well when it is God’s hand that feeds our mouths,” a maxim that is true indeed; but ask anyone who has lived “by faith” how difficult His testing is sometimes. Helen trusted the Lord to supply her needs according to His promises, yet making ends meet required that she stretch the cord mighty tight sometimes.

Helen was somewhat temperamental and it bothered her that so many silly women made a fuss over her husband. When he was home she was possessive of him; when he was away from home she was jealous of him. There can be no question that Harry had a burning compulsion to preach the Word whenever and wherever he could do so and rarely declined an invitation to speak, unless it was physically impossible for him to accept. But there is some question as to the wisdom of his extended absences from his home. It is not fair to Helen, however, to suggest that she opposed Harry’s itinerant ministry. Often in their early days they prayed together about the matter. The Lord came first in their lives—this was always so. They sought will and submitted to it insofar as they knew it. Many commercial salesmen are on the road as much as Harry was, and Harry was an ambassador of the King! Should he sacrifice less than they?

In the thousands of pages of HAI’s diary he mentions again and again his affection for Helen. He reveals that he missed her a great deal, that he was thinking of her and remembering such-and-such an occasion and how much he disliked being away from his family. No matter what city he visited he tried to find some little gift to take to her when he should get home. It might be only a piece of ribbon, a handkerchief, a small trinket of some kind, but almost always something. I know this because I was with him on a number of occasions when he did his shopping—often at a drugstore or a five-and-ten, to be sure, but this only because he had little money to spend. In later years he was able to do better. For example, one time Harry brought a present from Canada. His diary reads: “Helen was delighted with some English china I brought over.” On another occasion, when HAI had been in Dallas for the week preceding Good Friday and Easter, he came home without a gift. The next night he wrote in his journal, “After lunch I went down town [in Chicago] and bought a couple of dresses for Helen. She likes them very much.” There is pathos in Harry’s comments in his 1947 journal, when Helen was quite ill. After having completed a series of messages in Florida he wrote:

March 4, 1947

En route to Chicago. Was thoroughly tired physically and mentally, and slept nearly all day. … I keep thinking of Helen and hoping and praying all is going well with her.

Here and there comments appear about “poor Helen” this and “poor Helen” that, or “Helen sick at 11 P.M. Had to be up with her all night,” or “Helen coughed a great deal,” and “Helen is not at all well. I am much concerned about her.” Only about one entry in nearly 7,500 pages suggests less than complete accord between husband and wife, and this was at a time when she was unwell.

June 30, 1947

Helen does not seem well. She broods a good deal. I wish there might be more of the joy of the Lord.

With Harry Ironside there was never anyone else than Helen Schofield Ironside. She was the wife of his youth and of his mature years also. It would never have occurred to him to look at another woman. Once, when a lovely lady chided him gently for not recalling that he had met her several years earlier at a certain Bible conference, he responded, “Well, you know, I simply don’t remember all the nice ladies I meet. You see, I have a perfectly good wife at home.”

During their half century of marriage the Ironsides experienced times of rejoicing and times of sorrow. Their two sons, both of whom wandered far from the Lord as young men, were restored to Him. It will be recalled that Edmund came back to Christ after he and Freda had lost all that they possessed in the Florida hurricane of 1928. The senior Ironsides were filled with joy at Ed’s return to the Lord, and then in 1939, when John and Sally committed themselves to Christ, Harry wrote:

The thing that has meant more to us this month than anything else has been a letter from John telling of his surrender to Christ for full-time service. It was so wonderfully written, and is the answer to our prayers of many years— and it just broke us down before the Lord.

In the summer of 1941 HAI was scheduled to direct the General Conference at Montrose, Pennsylvania. During the train trip from Chicago he was quite concerned about Edmund, who had suffered a coronary thrombosis a few days earlier. Harry’s journal on the day of his arrival reads:

July 25, 1941

Reached Buffalo at about 8:45 and left on D. L. & W. at 10 A.M. Arrived at New Milford about 4:50 and was driven to Montrose.

Just after dinner I received a telegram from Freda telling me that Edmund had just passed away. I have a son in Heaven—but oh, how I shall miss him down here!

I was with Dr. Ironside that day, since I too was to speak at the conference. Understandably Ed’s death at forty-two was a great shock to his father, who seemed stunned. After communicating with Helen and John he made arrangements to leave the next day for Dallas, where he preached Edmund’s funeral sermon. The topic: “Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable gift.” Entries in the diary are too personal and too sacred to be cited.

More than two hundred friends, both black and white, attended the service. No higher compliment to Ed and to his understanding of and interest in the black students at the Southern Bible Training Institute could have been paid than that which was spoken by one of them, “Edmund Ironside was the blackest white man I ever knew.”

Life and work must go on, and within a few days HAI was back in the harvest field. Yet the shock of Edmund’s death weighed heavily upon him for many months and left him brain-weary. He knew that the Lord does all things well. He rejoiced for Ed, but try as he would he seemed unable to cast off a blanket of grief. Time heals, though, and in due course—really through the months of sorrow—Harry’s confidence in the love of God and His peace sustained him. Writing me later about Edmund and his seemingly unfinished task, HAI said:

Nature would try to raise questions, but faith rests in the sense of the infinite wisdom and love of God. Our hearts find wonderful peace as we dwell on the blessed estate of the dead in Christ. Surely nothing can be more wonderful than this: “They shall see His face.” And then when we talk of work interrupted, we need to remember there is a work over yonder doubtless far more important than anything which can be done here, for it is written: “His servants shall serve Him.”

In 1934 Harry purchased a house in Wheaton, Illinois, because Lillian was to enter Wheaton Academy that autumn. He had seen the faith of his sons wrecked in secular institutions of higher learning and he wanted to spare Lillian that travail. It seemed senseless for her to commute between Chicago and Wheaton and, in view of the fact that he himself was away from the city much of the time during the week, the Wheaton house could serve as home for Helen and Lillian. On weekends they could come into Chicago, where he would still maintain an apartment in the Plaza Hotel.

Lillian graduated from Wheaton Academy in 1938 and from Wheaton College in 1943. In 1944 she married Gilbert Koppin, Jr. who was in the armed services at the time, receiving his discharge in 1946.23 In 1944, therefore, Helen moved back to the hotel in Chicago.

Throughout his whole life Harry had little time for relaxation, especially after the mid-twenties. In the California years he went fishing several times but, as he admitted, he caught very few fish. “Others got some