I feel inclined to insert a few thoughts in this space in discussion of what I consider to be a topic to saints; the idea of a clear perspective, a deeper comprehension, and a more thorough understanding of the standards of God’s Word for Christian living and the abundant supply in the economy of God’s grace for attaining to high standards of holy living.
Gregory Mantle in the introduction of his book Better Things from Above inserts a quote from Faber which says, “The devil can fight as successfully against God with low views as with mortal sins. Low views of the privileges and possibilities of the Christian life result inevitably in slackness and weakness.”
Low views produce low standards for the life which, in turn, results in only limited blessings from God and a limited measure of divine grace which, in turn, robs us of victories which we might otherwise have and the richness and fulfillment which should be realized in Christian living. This is true because we have low views of Christian standards and consequently settle for a low plane of living with whatever degree of blessings, joy and grace that affords. Therefore we do not expect much of ourselves nor demand much of ourselves in the way of Christian living and do not expect much from God in the way of divine aid to raise our standards of living and do better and gain greater victories. Thus we live our lives on the defensive and always have our defenses out and are loaded with excuses for our failures when we are overcome in the trials and tests of life. My answer to those who live this way is that whatever excuses you have for your failures in being what God wants you to be and failing of the grace of God in the test; you better be thinking up some good ones because you are going to have to meet God with those excuses some day. The good news I bring you is that you do not have to go through life this way on short rations because the same God who wrote the Bible and set up the standards of holy living outlined in those holy scriptures, set up an economy of grace to go along with those scriptures to supply every person with a sufficiency of grace to enable every Christian person to come up to the full standard of every principle of truth taught in the New Testament if they will just humble their hearts and submit to God and go down and get it.
It is appalling and downright pitiful and tragic that many people get all involved in worldly activities after the worldly mold and patterns even to the extent they allow those things to hinder them from their Christian duties and attending church services, etc., and they still affirm they are keeping victory and living for God and pray all the time whether they are in service or not and God is blessing them right along. What I fear is that some people get all caught up in these things and carried away with them and get all elated and feel a strong sense of satisfaction in themselves over what they are doing and actually honestly mistake this for spiritual blessings. Folks, I affirm this is not true and cannot be true in God’s setup of things. It is certainly low views when we think we can mix up our lives between the Lord and these worldly activities and feel this to be acceptable to God and that He blesses our lives right on. We can defeat ourselves; yea, even destroy ourselves with our thinking low views.
We can see many signs of compromise (low views) among the people today immodest dress, bodily adornment, jewelry, worldly fashions, cutting and frilling the hair, worldly amusements, etc. These things belong to the outward life and we can see them and all of them are an important part of the general let down and departing from the “faith once delivered to the saints.” However, there is another type of compromise which is more subtle and hidden which we do not see on the outside and therefore it gains its ground and does its fatal work in the soul without our knowing it until it is done. That is a type of compromise hidden in the heart involving attitudes, feelings, bitterness, unforgiveness, resentments, pet peeves, etc., and God’s Word says there are many defiled with these things. (Hebrews 12:15-16.) For one to have these things in his life and retain them and cherish them and excuse them because of circumstances and how he was treated and still feel himself clear before God and justify himself in them is a clear, direct compromise of the scriptural codes for holy living and will render him ineffectual in prayer and dry up his prayer life and bring him to total defeat in his purpose to live for God and be saved. We must be healed of our hurts, wounds, bitterness and critical and bad attitudes if we expect to prosper in our spiritual lives and get to heaven in the end. Let us all seek to encompass in the scope of our thinking and perspectives the possibilities of the healing of our souls and total victory over all these things through the abundance of God’s grace. Let us not entertain any low views here.
The good news I bring you today is that you do not have to be a victim of circumstances. You can, through the grace of God, rise above them. Read Romans 8:35-39. Neither do you have to live under the cloud of hurt feelings, offences, mistreatment, spitefulness, misrepresentations, etc., but can rather abide under the shadow of the Almighty. Psalm 31:20 says, “…thou shalt keep them secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues.” Job 5:21 says, “Thou shalt be hid from the scourge of the tongue:…” The margin says here “When the tongue scourgeth.”
Some people could stand an actual whip lashing better than a tongue-lashing. When hard and sharp things are said to them, it cuts them down and they can never get over it. It is a peculiar kind of pride that causes people to be so sensitive to what people say to them. By the grace of God you can be healed of this sensitiveness and rise above it and overcome it. Read Matthew 5:43-44 and then settle it that whatever God tells us to do, He has already provided the grace and strength to enable us to do it. It begins with humility and denial of one’s self. God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. (James 4:6.) Let us never say we can’t do this or that God instructs us to do. Only say we have not been able to do it yet but we are on our way.
If you are down under or plagued by any of these things, you don’t have to be. You are thus because you have settled for it that way. You have concluded you are just that way and that is your natural makeup and you can’t help it. However, under God you can. You can appeal to God and submit yourself to Him and He can heal you of that defect in your nature and make you over new ALL NEW. (II Corinthians 5:17.)
One of the things in which the children of Israel displeased God and brought His judgment down on them was that they limited the Holy One of Israel. (Psalm 78:41.) Let us therefore beware lest we fall after the same example of unbelief. Let us not limit the Holy One of Israel nor discount what His grace can do for us and just plain quit thinking we can’t rise above these things and every other thing that is contrary to us and detrimental to our spiritual lives and would hinder us from fulfilling the Bible standards for holy living and boldly declare “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” Phil 4:13.