God employs His people to encourage one another. He did not say to an angel, "Gabriel, My servant Joshua is about to lead My people into Canaan—go, encourage him." God never performs unnecessary miracles. If His purposes can be accomplished by ordinary means, He will not use miraculous agencies. Gabriel would not have been half so well fitted for the work as Moses. A brother's sympathy is more precious than an angel's prestige. The swift-winged angel knew more about the Master's desires than he did about the people's needs. An angel had never experienced the difficult journey, nor faced the fiery serpents, nor had he led the stiff-necked multitude in the wilderness as Moses had done. We should be glad that God usually works for man by man. This forms a bond of brotherhood, and being mutually dependent on one another, we are united more completely into one family.
Brethren, take the text as God's message to you. Work at helping others, and especially strive to encourage them. Talk warmly to the young and anxious inquirer; lovingly try to remove stumbling blocks out of his way. When you find a spark of grace in the heart, kneel down and blow it into a flame. Leave the young believer to discover the roughness of the road by stages, but tell him of the strength that is found in God, of the certainty of the promise, and of the benefits of communion with Christ.
Aim to comfort the sorrowful and to encourage the despondent. Speak a fitting word to the weary, and lift the spirits of those who are fearful to go on their way with gladness. God encourages you by His promises; Christ encourages you as He points to the heaven He has won for you; and the Spirit encourages you as He works in you to will and to do of His own purpose and pleasure. Imitate divine wisdom, and encourage others according to the Word this evening.
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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.