Devotionals by Alistair Begg

February 22

The Mighty One

His bow remained unmoved; his arms were made agile by the hands of the mighty one of Jacob. - Genesis 49:24

The strength that God gives to His Josephs is real strength; it is not a boasted valor, a fiction, a thing of which men talk but which ends in smoke; it is true--divine strength.

Why does Joseph stand against temptation? Because God enables him. There is nothing that we can do without the power of God. All true strength comes from "the Mighty One of Jacob." Notice in what a blessedly familiar way God gives this strength to Joseph--"His arms were made agile by the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob." God is represented as putting His hands on Joseph's hands, placing His arms on Joseph's arms. Just as a father teaches his children, so the Lord teaches them that fear Him. He puts His arms upon them. Marvelous condescension! God Almighty, Eternal, Omnipotent, stoops from His throne and lays His hand upon the child's hand, stretching His arm upon the arm of Joseph, that he may be made strong!

This strength was also covenant strength, for it is ascribed to "the Mighty One of Jacob." Now, wherever you read of the God of Jacob in the Bible, you should remember the covenant with Jacob. Christians love to think of God's covenant. All the power, all the grace, all the blessings, all the mercies, all the comforts, all the things we have flow to us from the fountainhead, through the covenant. If there were no covenant, then we should fail indeed; for all grace proceeds from it, as light and heat from the sun. No angels ascend or descend except by the ladder that Jacob saw, at the top of which stood a covenant God. Christian, it may be that the archers have sorely grieved you and shot at you and wounded you, but still your bow remains unmoved. Be sure, then, to ascribe all the glory to Jacob's God.

Family Bible reading plan

verse 1 Exodus 5

verse 2 Luke 8

Holiness - It's Nature, Hindrances, Difficulties and Roots

J. C Ryle wrote this timeless classic on holiness over a hundred years ago, yet how poignant his words still are for us today. Sadly, we all know how easy it is to appear godly in public, while behind closed doors to continue in our own sin.
 
This modern English version will challenge a new generation of readers to live a Christ–like life. Ryle’s timeless wisdom reminds us that holiness shouldn’t be cold, distant and unobtainable, but that Christ himself is the root of our godliness. Be exhorted not to simply settle for half–hearted holiness, but to strive to be holy in every area of our lives. Holiness, Ryle argued, was not simply a matter of believing and feeling, but of doing.
 

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From Morning & Evening revised and edited by Alistair Begg copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.org.

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About Alistair Begg

Alistair Begg has been in pastoral ministry for more than 30 years. Following graduation from The London School of Theology he served eight years in Scotland at both Charlotte Chapel in Edinburgh and Hamilton Baptist Church. For the last 22 years he has been the senior pastor at Parkside Church near Cleveland, Ohio. He has written several books and is heard daily and weekly on the radio program, Truth For Life. The teaching on Truth For Life stems from the week by week Bible teaching at Parkside Church. He was recently awarded an honorary doctorate from Cedarville University. He and his wife, Susan, have been married 30 years and have three grown children.

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