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Dr Tow's Letter 14 Jan 2018

My dear readers,
(Extracts from The Leader magazine and Daily Remembrancer by Pastor John Smith, edited by Dr SH Tow)

1. “A very present help in trouble” Ps 46:1 (May 4 Evening)

For God is our refuge and strength. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed. Our God is able. His grace is never so real as in seasons of trouble, sickness, or death. Then we need something which nothing else can supply but God. God is our help in trouble. He helps us to bear it. He helps us to improve it. He helps us through it. His choicest communications and sweetest manifestations are freely given in times of trial and distress. Believer, thy God is thy refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. He is never nearer than when you fancy that He stands afar off; He is never kinder than when you think He hath shut up His lovingkindness in displeasure. Do not doubt His love. Do not mistake His chastening. Do not listen to His foes. Do not forget His word. But remember, if trouble comes, grace comes with it; and your God is present to help you rise above it and to derive a blessing from it. Believe when you cannot see. Trust when you do not feel. Wait when God is silent. Your good is consulted in every trouble, and your God will be glorified by every trial. “The Lord of hosts is with you, the God of Jacob is your refuge: therefore fear not neither be dismayed.”

Jehovah, thy refuge and rock,
In trouble, His help shall supply;
Though earth be removed with a shock,
Still God, thy Redeemer, is nigh.

2. "Fear thou not" Isa 41:10 (March 5 Morning)

Fearful Christians dishonour their Saviour. Yet many Christians fear. They are prone to fear because they do not realize their relation to Him, their interest in His promises, and that they are always remembered by God. How graciously our God forbids our slavish fears, and encourages confidence in Himself! Our slavish fears dishonour Him, our filial confidence glorifies Him. He loves to be trusted; He is grieved by our doubts and fears. We should fear nothing but sin; and if we fear to sin, follow holiness and preserve a clean conscience void of offence toward God and man; if we live upon His Word, daily use the open fountain for our cleansing, and cultivate filial communion with our God, then we can have no cause for fear. Beloved, leave anxiety, distrust, and slavish fear, to the poor, godless worldling; but trust in the living God always, everyday and everywhere. Hope in God; wait upon God; expect from God; follow hard after God; and all you want will be given, and all that would injure you will be frustrated. Be not afraid, only believe; the Lord Jesus is with thee; therefore, “Fear thou not!”

And art Thou with me, gracious Lord,
To drive away my fear?
Dost Thou proclaim Thyself my God,
Jehovah ever near?
Then farewell, anxious, gloomy care,
My God forbids my soul to fear.

3. "For with the Lord there is mercy" Ps 130:7 (June 21 Eevening)

“With Him is plenteous redemption.” Mercy is of the Lord. His mercy never fails. Plenteous mercy dwells in God. It is one of His perfections. The exercise of it is His delight. There is mercy with the Lord in all His fulness; He never was more merciful than now, nor He ever will be. There is mercy with the Lord in all its tenderness: He is full of compassion, His fond feelings are exercised for us, His tender mercies are over us. There is mercy with Him in all its variety, meet for every case. Here is mercy that receives sinners, mercy that restores backsliders, mercy that surrounds believers. Here is the mercy that pardons sin, that introduces to the enjoyment of all gospel privileges, and that blesses the praying soul far beyond expectations. With the Lord there is plenteous mercy: He loves to display it, He is ready to impart it, He has determined to exalt and glorify it. There is mercy with the Lord; this should encourage the miserable sinner to approach Him; this informs the fearful, they need bring nothing to induce Him to bless them; this calls upon backsliders to return to Him; and this is calculated to cheer the weary and worn believer, under all his troubles and distresses. Look to the Lord, for He is good; His mercy is everlasting; and His truth endureth to all generations.

Believer, on the Lord recline.
His mercy's boundless and divine!
See from the cross how wide it flows,
Beyond the bound of all thy woes!

4. "Draw nigh to God" James 4:8 (March 13 Evening)

Did you know, God desires our company! But we must keep ourselves pure and clean. Alas! sin thrusts us to an infinite distance from God and unbelief keeps us there. Grace brings us back and brings us nigh by the blood of the cross. When we sin we wander from God, but prayer draws us back. God is on the throne of grace, Jesus our intercessor is before the throne, and we are invited to draw nigh. We are called to come up to the throne, to appear before God, to exercise confidence in Him through Jesus and to pour out our hearts before Him. We are to tell Him all, all we fear, all we desire and all we want. We are to praise Him for all we possess, or have received in time past, or expect in time to come. We are to be frank: there is to be no reserve. We are to be serious: there must be no lightness. We are to be fully assured that our God is love, so there is to be no dread or alarm. Draw nigh to God, to ascertain His will, to enjoy His love, to unburden your mind, to engage Him afresh on your side, that you may rise above the present doomed and cheerless world. "He will draw nigh to you." What an inducement is this! Draw nigh and behold his glories. Draw nigh to God and dissipate your fears.

Let us now approach Thy throne
Through the living way made known.
Way of faith which Jesus made,
Through the veil of flesh displayed;
Through His rent humanity,
God our Friend in heaven we see.

God bless you and keep you, dear readers.

Yours faithfully in the Saviour’s Service,

Dr SH Tow