A Sweet Savor Contact Miscellaneous Audio Messages Penmen

“NOW – HEREAFTER”

Now,” dear kindred in Jesus, we are in the world. But by the calling of God it is manifest we are not of the world, John 17:16, and our beloved Redeemer has said, “In the world ye shall have tribulation but be of good cheer: I have overcome the world”. Then it is not to be thought strange that, “Now,” for a season if need be ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations”. According to our natural inclinations, we should much like to be “carried to the skies on flowery beds of ease,” but our loving Redeemer has decreed otherwise. “Manifold temptations” are His gift to us now, and oh, that with Job we might be enabled to say, “What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?” (Job 2:10). So, now, beloved of God, you may be in the furnace of affliction. The Lord had His fire in Zion and His furnace in Jerusalem. There is so much dross to be purged (Isa. 1:21, 31:9). And dross, it is our infirmity to be from time to time accumulating, so that the fine gold becomes dim. There is so much that is fleshly about us, which we dote upon and think highly of, and think to be pure and of the Holy Ghost. Ah! we are oft deceived by self and pride, and our dear Lord brings us “through the fire” (Zech. 13:9). Truly there is many a “fiery trial” to be endured, much we are humbled therein, all vain helps, and fleshly confidences, and glorifyings are burned up, and we are graciously, yes, in the tender pity of our Father in Heaven, taught that all our help and joy is from the Comforter, the Holy Ghost. Now, we are often cast down. Discouragements meet us oftentimes: rugged paths to tread in, conflicts from within. Satan assails. Now, the plague of our own hearts causes us to heave with many a sigh. In the vale of sorrow, we wander. In Gethsemane we languish, now we suffer, but hereafter times of joy and prosperity await the believer. Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. Though now in a sea of trouble, though now the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard, against him. Now, the bud has a bitter taste, trying providences are thy lot, but hereafter how sweet will be the flower. Hereafter, the clouds will pass away, thou shalt emerge from the gloom. Now you may be saying like Jacob, “All these things are against me.” Hereafter thy soul shall exclaim, “It is enough: Joseph may son is yet alive: I will go and see him before I die.” “Now we see through a glass darkly, but then face to face, now I know in part, but then shall I know even as I am known”

(Elder) Frederick W. Keene
Raleigh, N.C.