Magazine June 2015


Emphasis: When I Consider Your Heavens -Paul Alberts
Worship: We Love To Sing Thy Praises -Anonymous
Feature: Psalms Of Creation -Tom Steere
Feature: Creation In Psalms -David Anderson
Feature: Creation In Psalms -David Anderson
Feature: Creation In Psalms -David Anderson
Uplook: Prayer
Uplook: Fatherhood And Sonship -Roger Penney
Discover: Discover Questions -Alan Groth
Series: Divine Titles And Their Significance -A. J. Pollock
Overview: Esther -Leslie M. Grant
Family: Marriage Glue -David Alberts
Response: Responses
YouAsked: Where is hope found? -Timothy P. Hadley
GoodNews: The Last Day Of My Life
Full Magazine PDF: Magazine PDF

The Last Day Of My Life

By Stephen Campbell

In March 2011 a terrible tsunami devastated the northeast coast of Japan. As the wave approached, 60-year-old Hiromitsu Shinkawa raced into his concrete home for a few belongings. But he had less time than he thought and the sea was stronger than he expected. Within minutes Hiromitsu’s house was broken up. The man found himself flailing underwater before desperately pulling himself up on a piece of his own roof. The water propelled him forward, then it reversed course and sped away from land – finally leaving Hiromitsu adrift on his broken rooftop, alone, ten miles out in the Pacific Ocean.

Many regions of the world experience similar natural disasters. But far more familiar are the calamities of life: health lost, finances upended, family broken, hope gone. Within moments these can transform any ordinary day into an unforeseen tragedy. We find out that we had less time than we thought and the sea of despair is stronger than we expected.

The Bible identifies the source of this despair as the problem of sin. The “sin of the world” (Jn. 1:29 NKJV) has marred God’s creation and propelled mankind away from Him. People honor God with their lips but remain far from Him in their hearts (Mt. 15:8).

Two days after the tsunami, rescuers found Hiromitsu – dehydrated and delirious, but alive. Later he said, “No helicopters or boats that came nearby noticed me. I thought that day was going to be the last day of my life.”

You may also feel abandoned in your gloom. Perhaps no one nearby even notices your misery. But your Rescuer is near! The Savior, Jesus, has overcome the distance caused by sin. He knows what sorrow is, for He Himself has sorrowed. He knows the depths of sin, for He Himself paid sin’s penalty when He died on a cross and accepted God’s judgment on your behalf (1 Pet. 3:18). He knows where you have drifted, and He comes to you at this moment. Trust the risen Savior as your own and accept His tender deliverance from the sea of sin. We can tell you how.

Where is hope found?

Hope is found in the Lord Jesus Christ, who is “our hope” (1 Tim. 1:1 NKJV). Without Him we have no hope (Eph. 2:12), no help (Rom. 5:6) and no home (Jn. 14:1-6). But with and through Him we have a hope that does not disappoint and we have power within us to enjoy the hope we have (Rom. 5:5).

Believers, even in a time of darkness and despair, are connected to the God of Hope who is able to fill us with all joy and peace that we might abound in hope (Rom. 15:13)! He wants to remind His own: “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jer. 29:11). Psalm 62:5-8 reminds us, “My soul, wait silently for God alone, for my expectation is from Him. He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory; the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in Him at all times, you people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us.”

In those difficult times we need to be encouraged to “lift up my eyes to the hills – from whence comes my help? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber” (Ps. 121:1-3). When we do that, the question we ask ourselves is “Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; for I shall yet praise Him, the help of my countenance and my God” (Ps. 42:11).

If you are hurting today, know that there is hope for the hurting and help for the helpless in the Lord Jesus Christ. Turn it all, and your whole life, over to Him today!

Answered by Timothy P. Hadley


You are doing a great job. Your monthly Grace & Truth Magazine is superb. I can’t tell you enough how much we enjoy reading it. The articles are so deep, moving on our hearts. — USA

I absolutely love your magazines! I love the thought-provoking and educational articles contained in them and I intend to help in whatever small financial way I can once I am released. — USA

Your magazine is the best spiritual magazine I have ever read, and I read a lot. In the very near future I will send you a donation. — USA

I liked the article “Wells Of Salvation” featured in the May ’14 issue. That was a very nice subject. — India

The issue in May 2014 about the three women is excellent! — Sri Lanka

I must say your magazine has to be one of the most knowledgeable, Word-driven, wisdom-filled magazines – which I proudly read every month. Almost every article has some theme, story, Bible study or teaching I can apply almost everyday in my life. — USA

I was much moved and touched with the article on “Pleasing Him In All Things” in the June 2014 edition. It was very inspirational. — Malawi


“For Mordecai was great in the king’s palace, and his fame spread throughout all the provinces; for this man Mordecai became increasingly prominent.” —Esther 9:4 NKJV

By Leslie M. Grant

Esther means “I will be hidden.” The book deals with the Jews during the time of their captivity, outside their own land, hidden among the nations, yet cared for providentially by the God whom they had disobeyed. God’s name is not found in the book – He is also hidden. He could not link His name publicly with them for their dispersion was due to chastening [correction] because of disobedience. Moreover, these people had chosen to remain in Persia despite God’s having opened the way for them to return to Israel. They had no real concern for returning to God’s place for them when others had done so.

Still, God’s overruling hand in mercy and protection is beautifully seen here. It is typical of the blessing that is to come to the now-scattered children of Israel after much cruel affliction and persecution.

Esther herself reminds us of the beauty that God sees in His people in spite of their failure and departure. Mordecai is a type of Christ, first in protecting the Gentile king from those who plotted his death and then in becoming greater and greater among the Gentiles after having first been marked out for death.

How well this account illustrates the dealings of God with any true believer who becomes careless and disobedient in his ways! He has no real communion with God and no joy in the Lord’s presence. Yet God cares for him by means of trials that have in view his restoration in submission to the Lord.

Marriage Glue

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father,

There is no shadow of turning with Thee; Thou changest not,

Thy compassions, they fail not;

As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.

—Thomas O. Chisholm (1866-1960)

By Dave Alberts

This old hymn, “Great Is Thy Faithfulness,” reminds us of the faithfulness of our God towards us. God’s faithfulness never changes. Likewise in marriage, faithfulness is exceedingly important – even when we see much unfaithfulness during this day in which we live.

Trusting in God’s plan for our lives is vital. When a Christian man and woman are doing so and are brought together for marriage, they must realize that God has faithfully brought them to each other. He knows the need we have to be loved and to love. When God instituted marriage it was because He saw that it was not good for man to be alone, so He created a helpmate perfectly fit for him (Gen. 2:18).

God’s way of providing a helpmate for Adam was to take a rib from Adam’s side in order to create his wife, Eve. The rib came from near Adam’s heart so he would love and cherish her as his own body. She was taken from under his arm that he might protect and provide for her. His helpmate was taken from his side to stand by him in all that life involves. This is still what God intends for marriage today. God has not changed His pattern from that very first marriage.

Our God went on to say in Genesis 2:24, “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh” (KJV). It is very beautiful to see how God faithfully takes two individuals and molds them into one. It is much more than just a physical union – it is a spiritual and emotional one as well. The word “cleave” in this verse really means to “cling to” or be “glued” together. Let’s consider four things that will help keep your marriage “glued” together.

1. LOOK To The Needs Of Each Other 
The first thing is to look for how you can meet the needs of your spouse. Scripture says in Philippians 2:4, “Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.” As an unmarried individual you only needed to see that your own needs were met. Now as a married man your responsibility as stated in Ephesians 5 is to love, nourish and cherish your wife as much as you would care for yourself. This means putting her needs above your own. As a wife you need to willingly and lovingly submit to your husband’s leadership. Look for ways you can encourage him in his responsibilities.

Both of you must look for ways to meet the emotional, spiritual and physical needs of your spouse. Meeting emotional needs means being available to your spouse with understanding and love during the ups and downs of life. Spiritual needs are met through reading Scripture together and seeking to help each other apply it to your life. The intimacy that God says is honorable in marriage should be shared freely and enjoyed with your spouse to meet the physical needs. Look up to God in prayer together and alone that He may show you how to meet these needs.

2. LISTEN Carefully 
Listen! Good communication is so important in marriage and it starts with listening carefully to each other. In James 1:19 God says, “Wherefore, My beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.” It has been said that God gave us two ears and one mouth so we would listen twice as much as we speak. Listening means that we focus on what our spouse is telling us and act on it. What is being communicated may be verbal as well as nonverbal. For men the nonverbal can be more difficult, so we need to look as well as listen.

Don’t let the busyness of life take away from the time that you share your hearts with each other. Always be open and honest with one another and create a relationship where there is trust and no fear to tell each other your thoughts. When there are misunderstandings, resolve them quickly and lovingly.

3. LOVE Sacrificially 
The third thing is to love as God describes in 1 Corinthians 13: “Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.” If you aren’t able to remember all these things, at least remember the first two: “Love suffers long and is kind.”

In your marriage you will need patience and kindness. Kindness includes being willing to say, “I was wrong.” It means you are willing to forgive each other as Christ also has forgiven you. This love is a sacrificial love that always puts God and our spouse above ourselves. How can you fulfil this love toward each other? 

As believers in the Lord Jesus you each have the Holy Spirit living in you. Galatians 5 reminds us that the first feature of the fruit of the Holy Spirit is love. If He is in control, His love will be seen. Beside this love there will also be in your marriage the added benefit of joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. I’m sure these are things we would all desire in our marriages, so let the Holy Spirit be in control.

4. LIVE Abundantly 
Lastly, live abundantly the life the Lord Jesus desires for you to live together. He said in John 10 that He came that we might have life and have it more abundantly. This means seeking together to serve Him and follow His leading in your marriage. Read His Word together to hear His voice. Enjoy one another fully – laughing together, crying together and serving others together. And spend time in recreational activities together.

I encourage both of you, husband and wife, to look to the needs of each other, listen carefully, love sacrificially and live abundantly. In doing so, God will be faithful to keep you “glued together.”

Remember: the vows of commitment you expressed at your wedding were before God, who has been faithful to you. By being faithful to Him and fulfilling those vows as God expects of you, He will abundantly bless you and make you a blessing to others. There are many couples who can testify to God’s faithfulness to bless because they were faithful to their vows and to Him. May you be counted together in that number!

Divine Titles and their Significance

Part Eight 

By A. J. Pollack

The Word
This is a title of our blessed Lord. In the majestic opening of John’s Gospel we read: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God” (Jn. 1:1-2 NKJV).

Why should “the Word” [Greek: Logos] be used to indicate a divine Person? an illustration will help here. I have often been in foreign lands whose languages were unfamiliar to me, sometimes sitting in a room alone with another Christian for considerable time. The two of us were intelligent and mannered, yet there we sat looking at each other, unable to know each other’s minds all for the lack of a spoken word which was understandable by us both – all for the lack of a medium of conveying our thoughts one to the other. How amazing that when the God of infinite love wished to make His mind known to His creature for his eternal blessing, He should give to man a living Word – a Person, our blessed Lord Jesus Christ.

As we closely examine John 1:1-2, it becomes more and more wonderful. Note the following.

  • The Word was in the beginning – from all eternity. 
  • The Word was with God – a distinct personality.
  • The Word was God – deity is claimed for the Word. 
  • The Word was with God in the beginning – eternally a distinct personality.

As we study these claims of Scripture we begin to see who the Lord is from all eternity.

For the sake of clarity writers sometimes speak of “God absolute” and “God relative.” What is meant by these terms? When we think of God as Father and Son and Spirit, one God, God in all His fullness, we mean God absolute [unqualified, complete]. When we read of the Word’s being with God we think of God relative [in respect to the absolute]. We learn that the Word is relative to God. When we speak of the Father and the Son, then we have God the Father relative to the Son; and the Son (or Word), who is God, relative to the Father. This is a great mystery, and we only gather these thoughts as revealed in God’s Holy Word.

We are told in Scripture that God absolute dwells in unapproachable light, that no one has seen Him nor can see Him – and that will be true for all eternity (1 Tim. 6:16). Yet, thank God, He has been pleased to reveal Himself in a Person, the Lord Jesus Christ, who is Himself God as the Father is God and the Holy Spirit is God. We gladly sing:

The higher mysteries of Thy fame 
The creature’s grasp transcend; 
The Father only, Thy blest name 
Of Son can comprehend. —Josiah Conder (1789-1855)

There has been an attempt by a certain religious group to belittle the person of our Lord on this point. They claim that the literal Greek of John 1:1 says that the Lord Jesus was only a god, an inferior god, created as the head of the God’s creation – a creature with power to create all else. They deceive the uninformed. In the Greek language, from which the new Testament was translated, there is a definite article [the], but there is no indefinite article [a/an]. So it is not right to speak of the Word as “a god.” Furthermore, the passage goes on to say, “all things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made” (Jn. 1:3). This completely refutes the idea that our Lord was created, while it asserts that He is the Creator of everything without a single exception.

When John 1:1 says that “The Word was with God,” it means God absolute: Father, Son and Spirit, one God, the fullness of the Trinity. If it had gone on to say that the Word was “the God,” it would have indicated that our Lord was Father, Son and Spirit, which would not have been true. But when it says, “The Word was God,” without putting in the definite article, we see deity claimed for the Word – God relative. Thus carefully did the inspired Word of God put the definite article where it is needed, and left it out when its insertion would not have conveyed the truth of the relative position of our Lord in the Godhead.

Then further we read: “and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth” (Jn. 1:14). Is it not wonderful that the Son, one with the Father and the Holy Spirit, the Word, chosen of the Father to reveal God to man, should stoop to man’s estate [rank] and dwell among men?

The Eternal Life 
Our Lord came into this world to manifest a life which was with the Father from all eternity. “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life – the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us – that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son, Jesus Christ” (1 Jn. 1:1-3).

The two words “eternal life” taken at their face value in this connection indicate nothing less than deity. Eternal life means life without a beginning or ending. no one has inherent life but God alone, and no one has eternal life inherently except God. So we read: “We know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life” (1 Jn. 5:20). So here we have the true God coupled with the title, Eternal Life – a description only attributable to a divine Person.

Was it not wonderful that this life which was with the Father was seen when our Lord was here on earth, a life perfectly pleasing to the Father? And is it not blessed beyond words that the life that was inherent in our Lord is conferred by God as a gift (Rom. 6:23) upon all who put their trust in the Lord Jesus Christ and receive Him as Savior? This does not raise man to the level of deity, but a divine life is conferred and in receiving it believers become partakers of the divine nature (2 Pet. 1:4). They share the moral features of the life of God. This is purchased for them by the atoning sufferings of the Son of God (1 Jn. 4:9).

Look for the continuation of this Series next month.

Fatherhood And Sonship

By Roger Penney

We see several father-son relationships in Scripture. It is my desire for us to consider parallels in these as we consider several points. Among the relationships I found are:

  • God the Father and God the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ,
  • God and the first man, Adam,
  • The Father and believers today, and
  • Fathers and their sons and daughters.

God Is Our Heavenly Father 
We tend to think of our Father in heaven according to our experience or observations of human fathers. But no matter what our perception, the fact is God our Father, whose very nature is loving and just, only wants the best for us; and He delights in seeing us grow to be like the His Son, Jesus Christ. 

Reading the genealogy in Luke 3 we follow the ancestry of the Lord Jesus through Mary, whose husband was Joseph. The Lord is said there to be “the son of Joseph” (v.23). Concluding the list of names we read that Adam was “the son of God” (v.38). In contrast to the Lord who was the Perfect Man as presented by Luke, Adam eventually sinned – and we followed in his steps.

Learning The Fatherhood Of God 
When we become Christians we start an exciting, sometimes difficult, journey like that of children who need to learn, grow and obey. It is the best of journeys, affecting us spiritually, emotionally and intellectually. This journey begins when we first come to the Lord Jesus: God gives us a new spirit and a new heart; and the Holy Spirit begins to dwell within us (Eze. 36:24-28). But we still behave badly at times while we live on earth.

From our earthly experience we see that a truly loving father will discipline his children. Without this, boys and girls will grow up to be lawless and without self control. The writer to the Hebrews advises us, “My son despise not thou the chastening [discipline] of the Lord” (Heb. 12:5-8 KJV, consider Proverbs 3:11-12). Of course if the Fall (Gen. 3) had not occurred, then there would be no need to discipline children. Let’s consider some things from before the time that sin entered the world to see God’s desires related to His sons and daughters.

God The Designer 
The first two chapters of the Bible tell us how God designed man and intended him to be. The first thought expressed by God is “Let us make man in our image.” The “us” and “our” tells us immediately of the Trinity – the Godhead acting in unity (Gen. 1:26). Man was created by the combined and united action of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. already in that loving and eternal relationship which is the Godhead we see the plan for all healthy and wise human relationships.

God The Craftsman, Man As God’s Regent 
The word “make” in Genesis 1:26 is not the same as “create” in Genesis 1:1. Create is to bring into being through the creative will, infinite energy and word of the Creator. It is a creation, ex nihilo as the academics say – “out of nothing.” Only God can do that. The word used here and translated “make” means to make out of already existing materials.

The passage is very interesting for it goes on to say that “God created man” (v.27) – He was both created and made. This is also applied to sea creatures and flying things (vv.20-21). However, the use of the word “make” implies God’s special care and purpose. This special standing of man in the creation by God is further emphasized in Genesis 2 where we see this creative activity in finer detail.

In verses 7-8 another word, “formed,” is used. This means to mold or to sculpt; as a sculptor his model and a potter his clay. Later we see that the LORD God “formed every beast of the field and every fowl of the air and brought them to adam to see what he would call them (v.19).

What a beautiful scene: God being with and introducing Adam to the animals over whom his work is to rule with benevolence, such as God exerted over a perfect creation. He gives His son the privilege and responsibility of naming the animals. God had set man already as His regent [governor] on the earth. Adam was the “son of God” and acted on behalf of the Father as a “firstborn.” Sons and fathers should have the same relationship, with the son acting for the father in accordance to the Word of God.

The title “firstborn” and the regency was lost by Adam because of sin. But another came who was to fulfill the title and position and to “restore that which He took not away” (Ps. 69:4). The Lord Jesus is the Firstborn over all creation, the origin of life and the object of worship of angels and the Church (Col. 1:15-18; Heb. 1:6, 12:23).

In Conversation With God 
God wants us to be like His Son, the Lord Jesus, and He exhorts us through the apostle Paul: “Wherefore come out from among them and be ye separate, says the Lord … and I will receive you and will be a Father to you” (2 Cor. 6:18).

The early chapters of Genesis show us the privileges we have as God’s new Creation. Immediately after the Fall, Adam and Eve “heard the voice of the LorD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day” (Gen. 3:8). God called to them. It was obviously His custom to walk and to talk with the first couple. During these visits there must have been a happy and refreshing dialogue between God and the human couple He had created – that is until sin was found in them. In loving judgment God removed them from the garden, and the closeness of this relationship was no longer enjoyed.

But in the Lord Jesus our sonship is restored and we may walk with Him. He promised, “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Heb. 13:5). Sadly, we often fail to recognize His presence beside us. Yet if we are enjoying His companionship, the dialogue which we have with Him and He with us is a joyful pleasure!

A High Calling And Status 
In believing, we are God’s “sons and daughters” (2 Cor. 6:18) – achieved through the work of our Lord Jesus Christ and not by any efforts of our own. Now, having been born of God’s Spirit, we are exhorted to “grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Pet. 3:18), taking on His likeness which is pleasing to God the Father (Jn. 3:3,5; 1 Jn. 3:2-3). As the Lord Jesus has “overcome the world,” we also may overcome the world.

God’s Husbandry 
Just as God “planted a garden, eastward in Eden” (Gen. 2:8), so we too are God’s planting, His husbandry. But, in the new Testament we see that we also become “labourers together with God” (1 Cor. 3:9). Paul wrote, “I have planted and apollos watered, but God gave the increase” (1 Cor. 3:6). We may then join in this labor of love, planting good things in God’s garden and going forth for His harvest (Jn. 4:35-38). In doing so we earn wages for life eternal. What a great privilege is ours to enter into the labor of God and share in the tasks in which He is busy. It was the Creator who planted the garden, but it was Adam who was to tend and guard it, and to “replenish the earth” (Gen. 1:28). We also, through evangelism and shepherding, help prepare a rich harvest and a beautiful garden for eternity.

A Father To Be Honored 
We must not forget Malachi’s injunction to the people of his own time, which also applies to us: “a son honours his father and a servant his master. If then I be a Father where is My honour?” (Mal. 1:6). There is much loose and frivolous talk among Christians today concerning the nature of God and of His character. also, there is often a lack of respect for one another. John reminds us, “Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another” (Jn. 13:13-17; 1 Jn. 4:11).

We are all part of a vast family of brothers and sisters; and there is also a Head of that family. We need to work harder in loving and in honoring all members of that family while being sure that we are honoring our Father, following in the footsteps of His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.


Prayer is talking to God. Does that sound hard or mysterious? Prayer should be as easy and natural for the Christian as talking to any friend. You don’t need a special language, certain words, or even to speak out loud, because God easily reads your mind (Heb. 4:12-13). We are told to “come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:16 NKJV). Of course, we should not be careless or disrespectful in our language just as we wouldn’t be with our parents, our boss, our teachers and others whom we should respect.

The Bible speaks of some special aspects of prayer, all of which may and probably should be included whenever we “let our requests be made known to God” (Phil. 4:6). These are:

Prayers: (Eph. 6:18; Phil. 4:6; 1 Tim. 2:1). This is the general term used for talking to God.

Supplications: (Eph. 6:18; Phil. 4:6; 1 Tim. 2:1). Supplication has the thought of asking for mercy – imploring or respectfully begging God for a particular need that you have.

Intercessions: (1 Tim. 2:1). With intercession you pray for someone else – for a particular need of that person.

Thanksgiving: (Phil. 4:6; Col. 4:2; 1 Tim. 2:1). In thanksgiving we thank God for His kindness to us in the hundreds of things daily that we have for which to be thankful. In fact we are told, “In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Th. 5:18).

Worship: (Ps. 95:6). In worship we thank God for Himself. We tell God how worthy He is. In the pattern-prayer of the Gospels (Mt. 6:9-13; Lk. 11:2-4) worship comes first: “our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name” (Mt. 6:9). All effective prayer must include worship!

It is our duty to pray. Samuel told the Israelites, “Far be it from me that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you” (1 Sam. 12:23). The Lord Jesus plainly said that “men always ought to pray” (Lk. 18:1). We can’t all be great evangelists or great teachers – but we can all pray. No special gift is required!