Bulletin Edition June 2023

“My Grace Is Sufficient For Thee”  

2 Corinthians 12:9

     This promise was made by the Lord to one of his servants in a time of great need. But it is a promise made to every believer, for all the promises of God are in Christ and sure to all who trust him (II Cor. 1:20). The thing promised is grace, all-sufficient grace, to meet our every need. To whom is this promise made?

1. THE BELIEVING SINNER – Salvation is by grace alone. No matter how numerous your sins, no matter how great your iniquity, no matter how vile your heart, the grace of God in Christ is sufficient to save you! Be of good courage. Trust Christ. And be not afraid. God’s grace is greater than your sin.

2. THE YOUNG CONVERT – Are you a young pilgrim, just delivered from Egypt? You have a long and difficult pilgrimage before you. But there is no cause for fear. He who called you is faithful. He will give you Water from the Rock and Bread from Heaven as you need. His grace is sufficient.

3. THE FAITHFUL SERVANT – The more you seek to do for Christ, the more you need his grace. And the more you need grace, the more God gives grace.

4. THE TEMPTED BELIEVER – Satan tempts you with every form of subtlety, seeking to take your heart away from Christ and destroy your soul. But God is faithful. He will not allow you to be tempted above measure and will with the temptation make a way to escape. His grace is sufficient for you.

5. THE SUFFERING SAINT – All God’s saints must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of heaven. We must go through the furnace of affliction and the waters of adversity. But his grace is sufficient.

6. THE FALLEN BELIEVER – Perhaps you have fallen into sin like Peter, or into indifference like the Laodiceans, or into rebellion like Jonah, and you wonder, “Will God yet forgive me?” Indeed, he will. His grace is sufficient for you.

7. THE AGED SAINT – You may be old and grey, but God will not forsake you. He will never leave you. And his presence with you means that his grace is sufficient for you.

8. THE DYING SAINT – It will be easy for you to die in the company of your risen Saviour. When the dew of death is on your brow, look still to Christ alone and hear his word of promise – “My grace is sufficient for thee!”

Don Fortner

All-sufficient grace

(John MacDuff, “The Faithful Promiser“) 

“God is able to make all grace abound toward you;
 that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things,
 may abound to every good work.” 2 Corinthians 9:8
All-sufficiency in all things! Believer! Surely you are “thoroughly equipped for every good work!”

Grace is no scanty thing, doled out in pittances.
It is a glorious treasury, which the key of prayer can always unlock—but can never empty!
It is a fountain—full, flowing, ever flowing, over flowing!

Mark these three ALL’S in this precious promise. It is a three-fold link in a golden chain, let down from the throne of grace, by the God of grace. “All grace!” “all-sufficiency!” in “all things!” and these to “abound.”

Oh! precious thought! My need cannot impoverish that inexhaustible treasury of grace! Myriads are hourly hanging on it, drawing from it—and yet there is no diminution. Out of that fullness we, too, may all receive, “grace upon grace!”

My soul, do you not love to dwell on that all-abounding grace! Your own insufficiency in everything, met with a divine “all-sufficiency in all things!”
Grace in all circumstances and situations.
Grace in all vicissitudes and changes.
Grace in all the varied phases of the Christian’s being.
Grace in sunshine—and in storm.
Grace in health—and in sickness.
Grace in life—and in death.
Grace for the old believer—and the young believer.
Grace for the tried believer, and the weak believer, and the tempted believer.
Grace for duty—and grace in duty.
Grace to carry the joyous cup with a steady hand—and grace to drink the bitter cup with an unmurmuring spirit!
Grace to have prosperity sanctified—and grace to say through tears, “May Your will be done!”

“God is able to make all grace abound toward you;
 that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things,
 may abound to every good work.” 2 Corinthians 9:8

My grace is sufficient for you!

(J.C. Philpot, “Strength Made Perfect in Weakness”)

My grace is sufficient for thee, for My power is made perfect in weakness.”  2 Corinthians 12:9

Not your strength,
not your wisdom,
not your prayers,
not your experience;
but “My grace”—My free, My matchless grace:
  independent of all works and efforts,
  independent of everything in the creature,
  flowing wholly and solely, fully and freely, out of the bosom of Jesus to . . .
    the needy,
    the guilty,
    the destitute,
    the undone.

You who are tried in worldly circumstances, who have to endure the hard lot of poverty—”My grace is sufficient for you.”

You who are tempted, day by day, to say or do that which conscience testifies against—”My grace is sufficient for you.”

You who are harassed with family troubles and afflictions, and are often drawn aside into peevishness and fretfulness—”My grace is sufficient for you.”

Our weaknesshelplessness, and inability are the very things which draw forth the power, the strength, and the grace of Jesus!

Believer, your case is never beyond the reach of the words—”My grace is sufficient for you!”

The free, the matchless, sovereign grace of God, is sufficient for all His people—in whatever state, or stage, or trouble, or difficulty they may be in!

My grace is sufficient for thee, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9

God’s grace is illustrated and magnified in the poverty and trials of believers!

(Charles Spurgeon)

“But He said to me: ‘My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness.’ Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

If none of God’s saints were poor and tried, we would not know the consolations of divine grace half so well.

When we find the wanderer who does not have a place to lay his head, who yet can say, “Still I will trust in the Lord”; when we see the pauper starving on bread and water, who still glories in Jesus; when we see the bereaved widow overwhelmed in affliction, and yet relying on Christ—oh what honour it reflects on the Gospel.

God’s grace is illustrated and magnified in the poverty and trials of believers!

Saints bear up under every discouragement, believing that all things work together for their good, and that out of apparent evils a real blessing shall ultimately spring. They know that their God will either work a deliverance for them speedily—or most assuredly support them in the trouble, as long as He is pleased to keep them in it. This perseverance of the saints proves the power of divine grace.

He who would glorify God, must reckon upon meeting with many trials. No man can be illustrious before the Lord, unless his conflicts are many. If then yours is a much-tried path, rejoice in it because you will better show forth the all-sufficient grace of God. As for His failing you, never dream of it—hate the thought. The God who has been sufficient until now, should be trusted to the end.

“No chastisement for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable unto them which are exercised thereby.” Hebrews 12:11

I asked the Lord that I might grow,
In faith and love and every grace,
Might more of His salvation know,
And seek more earnestly His face.

It was He who taught me thus to pray,
And He I trust has answered prayer.
But it has been in such a way,
As almost drove me to despair.

I hoped that in some favored hour,
At once He’d answer my request.
And by His love’s constraining power,
Subdue my sins and give me rest.

Instead of this, He made me feel,
The hidden evils of my heart.
And let the angry powers of hell,
Assault my soul in every part.

Yes, more with His own hand, He seemed,
Intent to aggravate my woe.
Crossed all the fair designs I schemed,
Blasted my gourds, and laid me low.

“Lord, why is this?” I trembling cried.
Will You pursue Your worm to death?”
“This is the way” the Lord replied,
“I answer prayer for grace and strength.”

“These inward trials I employ,
From self, and pride, to set you free;
And break your schemes of earthly joy,
That you may find thy all in Me.”
John Newton

One of the best tests of growth in grace

(Charles Spurgeon)

“Grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 3:18

“Grow in grace”—not in one grace only, but in all the Christian graces.

Grow in the starting place of grace, faith. Believe the promises more firmly than you have before. Let faith increase in fullness, constancy and simplicity.

Grow also in love. Ask that your love may become extended, more intense, more practical, influencing every thought, word and deed.

Grow likewise in humility. Seek to lie very low, and know more of your own nothingness.

As you grow downward in humility, seek also to grow upward—having nearer approaches to God in prayer and more intimate fellowship with Jesus.

To know Him is “life eternal”—and to advance in the knowledge of Him is to increase in happiness. Whoever has sipped this wine will thirst for more; for although Christ satisfies—yet it is such a satisfaction that the appetite is not only satisfied, but invigorated.

If you know the love of Jesus—then will you pant after deeper draughts of His love.
If you do not desire to know Him better—then you do not love Him at all, for love always cries, “Nearer, nearer!”

Seek to know more of Him . . .
  in His divine and human natures,
  in His sin-atoning work,
  in His excruciating death for you,
  in His present glorious intercession,
  and in His future royal coming in glory!

Remain by the cross, and search the mystery of His wounds!

An increase of love for Jesus, and a more perfect apprehension of His love for us—is one of the best tests of growth in grace.

The school of Heaven!

(Octavius Winslow, “Evening Thoughts”)

“The Lord hath done great things for us; whereof we
 are glad.They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.”  Psalm 126:3, 5

We can praise God for trials!

We can thank God for sorrows!

These have been to us, though a painful — yet
a much needed and a most blessed school.

The ‘wilderness’ has been a heavenly place on earth . . .
  the lessons which we have been taught,
  the truths which we have learned,
  the preciousness of Jesus which we have experienced,
  the love of God which we have felt,
  the sweetness in prayer which we have tasted,
  and the fitness for labor which we have derived,
all, all testify, as with one voice — to the unutterably
precious blessings that flow through the channel of
sacred and sanctified sorrow.

Dear reader, as painful and sad as may be the path
you now are treading — fear not; the outcome will
be most glorious. The seed you are sowing in tears,
shall yield you a golden harvest of joy!

Adversity is the school of Heaven!

And in Heaven . . . .
  where no sorrow chafes,
  where no tears flow,
  where no blight withers,
  where no disappointment sickens, and
  where no sad change chills, wounds, and slays,
the sweetest praises will be awakened by the
recollection of the sanctified sorrows of earth!

Your poor, silly sheep

(Octavius Winslow, “Daily Need Divinely Supplied” 1870)

“The Lord is my Shepherd . . . He restoreth my soul.”  Psalm 23:1, 3.

It is not the least important duty of the Shepherd to go in quest of the stray ones of the flock; the fickle sheep wandering from the fold.

The spiritual history of the believer is a history . . .
  of declension — and revival,
  of departure — and return,
  of his backsliding — and of the Saviour’s restoring.

The regenerate soul is bent upon backsliding from the Lord. The sun does not more naturally decline, than does the believing heart wander from God.

“O Lord, how many and hidden are my soul’s departures from You, You only know! How often my love chills, my faith droops, my zeal flags, and I grow weary, and am ready to halt in Your service. Mine is a sinful, roving heart, as fickle to You as the changing wind; as false to my vows as a broken bow. But You, O Lord, are my Shepherd, and You restore my soul. Pitying my infirmity, knowing my wanderings, and tracking all my steps — You recover, heal, and pardon Your poor, silly sheep, prone to leave Your wounded, sheltering side in quest of that which can be found in Yourself alone.”

Oh, the love of Jesus in . . .
  curbing our waywardness,
  checking our wanderings,
  arresting, healing, and restoring our souls.

He never forsakes His people, though they forsake Him times without number. How can He turn His back upon one bought with His sufferings, groans, and tears? How can He forsake the work of grace wrought in the soul by His Spirit? He may withdraw Himself for a time, gently to awaken us from our slothfulness and slumber — yet He returns again, and our lips gratefully sing, “He restores my soul.”

“I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee!” Hebrews 13:5

Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood!

O to grace how great a debtor,
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.

Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above!

O that day when freed from sinning,
I shall see Thy lovely face;
Clothed then in blood-washed linen
How I’ll sing Thy sovereign grace!

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