Apples of Gold

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Borrow not a few

‘Go, borrow the vessels abroad of all thy neighbours, even empty vessels; borrow not a few.’

2 Kings 4:3

The autumn colours are glorious this week. It has been fine, dry and sunny weather, and we have all enjoyed it. This morning a heavy mist covered the ground and blocked my view of the airport. The golden early morning sunrise made the mist look like a huge layer of yellow cotton wool. The covering of the mist reminded me of the covering of the blood of Jesus. The Mercy Seat covered with the blood of the sacrifice covering the broken tables of the law. the freshness of the cold morning air reminded me of the newness of the Gospel and that God's mercies are new every morning.

I split my readying between genesis and 2nd Kings. The words that struck me in my first reading were the following :- 'The Lord made all that he (Joseph) did to prosper in his hand.!' (Genesis 39 verse 3). Even before I climbed out of my bed this morning I thought of Joseph in prison. I had not quite reached that chapter in my reading but I thought of the comparisons between Joseph and Jesus. Thoughts came to mind that I had not entertained before.

Were the first 30 years of the life of Jesus a sort of spiritual prison for Him? He was after all holy and without spot or blemish. He was and is God in the flesh! He was daily walking among profane men. they were men who swore, stole, fought and cursed the name of God. How often have you or I winced when others have taken the name of our Lord in vain? If we are affected in such a way, then what of God in the flesh?

It is a lovely story about a widow woman whose name is kept secret, but whose sore trial is recorded for all to see. I am sure that she thought of herself as being very insignificant, yet in the Lord's eyes she was precious.

The death of her husband had left her in financial ruin with creditors on her doorstep. Her heart must have been aching, both with her loss and now the headache of debt. Many families these days find themselves in similar situations. Ill health, redundancy or the death of the family breadwinner can land many honest families in severe hardship.

The outlook was bleak for this poor woman. Not only did she lose her husband, but she was also facing the possibility of losing both of her sons as well. What kind of God would allow something like this to happen to one of His children?

The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob reigns supreme, and He governs all His creatures and all their actions. He allows certain seemingly negative things to befall us; yet each trial is a blessing sent in disguise when viewed from afar. The Psalmist could say that it was good for him to be afflicted. Many others can echo that same sentiment.

The woman was herself an empty vessel. She had been drained of all that was dear to her. It was not until the pitchers were broken that the light shone forth! We have also to be broken from time to time, for otherwise we become so comfortable in our surroundings that we forget that God even exists.

It is just one of the curses of this day and age. We are so comfortable that we have no real need of God. We can manage well enough without Him.
But dear ones nothing happens by chance - absolutely nothing! The words that I read this morning encouraged me to expect. Expect what?

Revival.

Are we as a people being prepared for this? Will the Lord continue to take precious saints from His church on earth without replacing them? Many in the last couple of months have 'gone home' from this small island alone. We are in desperate need of revival. We need revival in our souls as individuals and as a church collectively. Each day I am sickened by what churches are debating. There are debates that try to justify and legalize sin! If we were in our proper spiritual condition, then there would be no need for such debates!

This morning my prayer is for revival. I pray that resurrection power would cover our land as surely as the mist does this morning. O Lord blanket our needy souls with fresh heavenly dew that will result in gold as it were that has been tried long in the fire.  Lord if You will send revival, then may it start in my heart, with my family and in my home!

We are surrounded by helpless 'empty vessels' - loved ones, relatives, friends, neighbours and even enemies that are heading for a lost eternity, drowning in sin and without God and hope in this world. They need to be saved!

I thought of those people who have attended the Lord's House week after week for years sometimes even decades and still have not yet truly heard the Good News. They may be expecting an invitation to the Wedding Feast, and they no doubt think that they are deserving of a place. After all they are no worse than those who call themselves Christians! There are those who say quite openly and honestly, "When I die, God will not turn me away from Heaven. He is a God of love!"

To such I say, read God's Word!

Not only did the Lord fill the vessels the woman had within her own four walls, He also filled all the vessels that were brought to her, and still there was more! Our God cannot be exhausted. He loves to give, He loves to fill the empty places and He loves to display His awesome power to His children, sometimes when they least expect it!

Is your soul empty and needing of being filled today? "Open your mouth wide, and I shall fill it" says His Word.
Sin is our biggest stumbling block. It is a barrier between us and our God even when God Himself has taken it down!

We must always remember that the way of salvation is God's chosen way. We did not make it up, and neither have we followed cunningly devised fables. It is the Truth. The blood of Jesus Christ, God's Son cleanses us from ALL sin. Even the sinfulness of our sin is no match for the blood! 'Be ye filled with the Spirit!' If you are feeling empty and barren today my friend, ask God to fill you. If you are filled, then ask Him to keep on filling you. No matter what we are prepared to ask God for, we can be sure that yet there is yet more.

'Borrow not a few!' "Ask what you will, and I will do it. Ask and you shall receive, seek and you shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you!" Put God to the test today. At the beginning of the week I read about the cloud the size of a man's hand, and this morning I witnessed oil poured forth in abundance. I am excited by what may happen next!

Author : Iain Mackenzie  Edited by : Pastor Al Moak