Sunday Afternoon Gleanings (7-26-15)

Samuel Rutherford was a 17th-century Scottish Puritan pastor who was exiled for his faith. He spent much time writing others at home or in prison who struggled with their faith due to their circumstances. Below are some gleanings from this afternoon’s reading in The Letters of Samuel Rutherford which offer both comfort and challenge:

SUFFERING/PURPOSE OF PERSECUTION                                                                                   “Interpret and understand our Lord well in this; be not jealous of His love, though he make devils and men his under-servants to scour the rust off your faith, and purge you from your dross.” (To Henry Stewart, his wife & 2 daughters, and all prisoners of Christ at Dublin, p. 285)

“You doubt from II Cor. 13:5 whether you be in Christ or not? … A holy fear that you be not Christ’s, and withal a care and a desire to be his, and not your own, is not, nay, cannot be bastard nature. … For if you were not His, your thoughts … would not be such, nor so serious, as these.” (p. 294, to Mr. James Wilson)

“Oh, say you, I cannot pray. I answer, Honest sighing is faith breathing and whispering in the ear. The life is not out of faith where there is sighing, looking up with the eyes, and breathing toward God, ‘Hide not Thine ear at my breathing.’ Lam. 3:56” (To Mr. James Wilson, p. 296)

“His book keepeth your name, and is not printed and re-printed, and changed and corrected.” (To John Fennick, p. 303)

And a prayer adopted from “The Valley of Vision” A Collection of Puritan prayers (p. 76)

May the smiles of the world never allure me,

nor its frowns terrify me,

nor its vices defile me,

nor its errors delude me.

About Shawn Thomas

My blog,, features the text of my sermons, book reviews, family life experiences -- as well as a brief overview of the Lifeway "Explore the Bible" lesson for Southern Baptist Sunday School teachers.
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