Morning Reading for January 25

Matthew 2:1-12
Suggested further reading: Matthew 11:20-30

These verses teach us that there May be true servants of God in places where we should not expect to find them. The Lord Jesus has many `hidden ones' like these wise men. Their history on earth May be as little known as that of Melchizedek and Jethro and Job. But their names are in the book of life and they will be found with Christ at the day of his appearing. It is well to remember this. We must not look around the earth concluding all is barren. The grace of God is not tied to places and families. The Holy Spirit can lead souls to Christ without the help of many outward means.

It is not always those who have most religious privileges that give Christ most honour. We might have thought that the scribes and Pharisees would have been the first to hasten to Bethlehem on the slightest rumour that the Saviour was born. But it was not so. A few unknown strangers from a distant land were the first, except the shepherds, to rejoice at his birth (John 1:11). What a mournful picture this is of human nature! How often those people who live nearest to the means of grace are those who reject them most. There is too much truth in the old proverb: `The nearer the church, the further from God.' Familiarity with sacred things has an awful tendency to make men despise them.

There May be knowledge of Scripture in the head, while there is no grace in the heart. King Herod sent to enquire of the priests and elders where Christ was to be born (v. 4). They quickly gave him the answer and showed an acquaintance with the letter of Scripture. But they never went to Bethlehem to seek for the coming Saviour. They would not believe in him when he ministered amongst them. Their heads were better than their hearts. Let us all beware of resting satisfied with head knowledge. It is an excellent thing when rightly used. But a man may have much of it, yet perish everlastingly. What is the state of our hearts? A little grace is better than many gifts. Gifts alone save no one. But grace leads on to glory.

For meditation: What are you doing with all the spiritual privileges you have?

These readings (ISBN: 0 85234 420 1) are copyrighted and made available with permission by
Evangelical Press; 12 Wooler St., Darlington, Co, Durham, England, DL1 1RQ