Quotations for April, 2007
Sunday, April 1, 2007
Commemoration of Frederick Denison Maurice, Priest, teacher, 1872
God has brought us into this time; He, and not ourselves or some dark demon. If we are not fit to cope with that which He has prepared for us, we should have been utterly unfit for any condition that we imagine for ourselves. In this time we are to live and wrestle, and in no other. Let us, humbly, tremblingly, manfully look at it, and we shall not wish that the sun could go back its ten degrees, or that we could go back with it. If easy times are departed, it is that the difficult times may make us more in earnest; that they may teach us not to depend upon ourselves. If easy belief is impossible, it is that we may learn what belief is, and in whom it is to be placed.
... Frederick Denison Maurice (1805-1872), The Prayer-Book and the Lord’s Prayer, London: Macmillan, 1880, p. 374
(see the book; see also Heb. 10:32-33; more at Weakness)
Monday, April 2, 2007
[The Creeds] were formulated gradually, as a result of a series of desperate controversies—controversies which are now named sometimes after the supposed leaders and representatives of a particular interpretation of the Christian religion, and sometimes after the particular interpretation itself.I need not now attempt to make precise these heresies, as they came to be called. It is necessary only to point out that in various ways all these heresies were simplifications. By means of them the revelation of God to men was made, or appeared to be made, less scandalous. On the other hand, the various clauses of the Creed were not formulated as a new simplification, or as an alternative -ism. They were nothing more than emphatic statements of the Biblical scandal, statements which brought into sharp antagonism the new simplification and the old, Scriptural, many-sided and vigorous truth.
... Sir Edwyn C. Hoskyns (1884-1937), We are the Pharisees, London: SPCK, 1960, p. 62-63
(see the book; see also Mark 3:1-6; 1 Cor. 1:23,24; 1 Tim. 3:14-16; more at Bible, Creed, Heresy, Revelation, Scripture, Truth)
Tuesday, April 3, 2007
The chief pang of most trials is not so much the actual suffering itself, as our own inherent spirit of resistance to it.
... Jean Nicolas Grou (1731-1803), The Hidden Life of the Soul, London: Rivingtons, 1870, p. 183
(see the book; see also James 1:12; more at Weakness)
Wednesday, April 4, 2007
We cannot expect [people] to take seriously our belief in objective truth, if in our practice we indicate only a quantitative difference between all men who are in ecclesiastical structures or who use theological language. I do not mean that we should not have open dialogue with men; my words and practice emphasize that I believe love demands it. But I do mean that we should not give the impression in our practice that, just because they are expressed in traditional Christian terminology, all religious concepts are on a graduated, quantitative spectrum—that in regard to central doctrine no chasm exists between right and wrong.
... Francis A. Schaeffer (1912-1984), Death in the City, London: Inter-Varsity Press, 1969, Good News Publishers, 2002, p. 89
(see the book; see also 1 Tim. 6:20-21; more at Apologetics)
Thursday, April 5, 2007
God is not a power or principle or law, but he is a living, creating, communicating person—a mind who thinks, a heart who feels, a will who acts, whose best name is Father.
... Robert Hamill (1912-1975)
(see also Deut. 5:28-29; more at Knowing God)
Friday, April 6, 2007
Commemoration of Albrecht Dürer, artist, 1528, and Michelangelo Buonarrotti, artist, spiritual writer, 1564
O God in heaven, have mercy on us! Lord Jesus Christ, intercede for your people, deliver us at the opportune time, preserve in us the true genuine Christian faith, collect your scattered sheep with your voice, your divine Word as Holy Writ calls it. Help us to recognize your voice, help us not to be allured by the madness of the world, so that we may never fall away from you, O Lord Jesus Christ.
... Albrecht Dürer (1471-1528), from his journal , quoted in The Triumph of the Cross: the Passion of Christ in theology and the arts, Richard Viladesau, Oxford University Press US, 2008, p. 285
(see the book; see also John 10:14-16; more at Bible, Faith, Intercession, Mercy, Prayers, World)
Saturday, April 7, 2007
If there had anywhere appeared in spaceAnother place of refuge where to flee,Our hearts had taken refuge in that place,And not with Thee. For we against creation’s bars had beatLike prisoned eagles, through great worlds had soughtThough but a foot of ground to plant our feet,Where Thou wert not. And only when we found in earth and air,In heaven or hell, that such might nowhere be—That we could not flee from Thee anywhere,We fled to Thee.
... Richard Chenevix Trench (1807-1886), Poems, London: Macmillan, 1874, p. 152
(see the book; see also Ps. 46:1-3; 91:1-2; more at Providence)
Sunday, April 8, 2007
Commemoration of William Augustus Muhlenberg of New York, Priest, 1877
It is the recognition of this divine necessity—not to forgive, but to forgive in a way which shows that God is irreconcilable to evil, and can never treat it as other or less than it is—it is the recognition of this divine necessity, or the failure to recognise it, which ultimately divides interpreters of Christianity into evangelical and non-evangelical, those who are true to the New Testament and those who cannot digest it.
... James Denney (1856-1917), The Atonement and the Modern Mind, London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1903, p. 82
(see the book; see also Luke 17:3-4; more at Forgiveness)
Monday, April 9, 2007
Feast of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Teacher, Martyr, 1945
It is not experience of life but experience of the Cross that makes one a worthy hearer of confessions. The most experienced psychologist or observer of human nature knows infinitely less of the human heart than the simplest Christian who lives beneath the Cross of Jesus. The greatest psychological insight, ability, and experience cannot grasp this one thing: what sin is. Worldly wisdom knows what distress and weakness and failure are, but it does not know the godlessness of men. And so it also does not know that man is destroyed only by his sin and can be healed only by forgiveness. Only the Christian knows this. In the presence of a psychiatrist I can only be a sick man; in the presence of a Christian brother, I can dare to be a sinner.
... Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906-1945), Life Together , tr. Daniel W. Bloesch & James H. Burtness, Fortress Press, 2004, p. 115
(see the book; see also Lam. 3:40-42; Jas. 5:16; more at Forgiveness)
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Feast of William Law, Priest, Mystic, 1761
Commemoration of William of Ockham, Franciscan Friar, Philosopher, Teacher, 1347
Commemoration of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Priest, Scientist, Visionary, 1955
The pure, mere love of God is that alone from which sinners are justly to expect that no sin will pass unpunished, but that His love will visit them with every calamity and distress that can help to break and purify the bestial heart of man and awaken in him true repentance and conversion to God. It is love alone in the holy Deity that will allow no peace to the wicked, nor ever cease its judgments till every sinner is forced to confess that it is good for him that he has been in trouble, and thankfully own that not the wrath, but the love of God, has plucked out that right eye, cut off that right hand, which he ought to have done, but would not do for himself and his own salvation.
... William Law (1686-1761), The Spirit of Love [1752-4], in Works of Rev. William Law, v. VIII, London: G. Moreton, 1893, p. 80-81
(see the book; see also Job 5:17; Matt. 5:29,30; more at Awakening, God, Goodness, Judgment, Love, Repentance, Salvation)
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
Commemoration of George Augustus Selwyn, first Bishop of New Zealand, 1878
Someone gave me a bit of brick and a little slab of marble from Rome. It was wonderful to touch one of them and think, Perhaps the Apostle Paul or one of the martyrs touched this as they passed. But how much more wonderful is it to think that we have, for our own use, the very same sword our Lord used when the Devil attacked Him. [Brooke Foss] Westcott says “the Word of God” in Ephesians 6:17 means “a definite utterance of God.” We know these “definite utterances”—we have the same Book that He had, and we can do as He did. So let us learn the “definite utterances” that they may be ready in our minds; ready for use at the moment of need—our sword which never grows dull and rusty, but is always keen and bright. So once more I say, let us not expect defeat but victory. Let us take fast hold and keep fast hold of our sword, and we shall win in any assault of the enemy.
... Amy Carmichael (1867-1951), Edges of His Ways , London: SPCK, 1957, p. 39-40
(see the book; see also Num. 15:40,41; Eph. 6:17 2 Tim. 2:15; Heb. 4:12; Jas. 1:21-23; more at Weakness)
Thursday, April 12, 2007
It is to be feared that the most of us know not how much of glory may be in present grace, nor how much of heaven may be obtained in holiness on the earth.
... John Owen (1616-1683), V.1 in A Discourse Concerning Holy Spirit, bk. I-V , in Works of John Owen, v. III, London: Johnson & Hunter, 1852, p. 583
(see the book; see also Ps. 17:15; Luke 17:20-21; 20:36; 2 Cor. 3:18; 7:1; 1 John 3:2; more at Attitudes, Earth, Glory, Grace, Heaven, Holiness, Knowledge)
Friday, April 13, 2007
God is not disillusioned with us. He never had any illusions to begin with.
... Luis Palau (b. 1934), in a private communication from the Luis Palau Association
(see also Ps. 44:20-21; 90:8; John 1:5; 3:19; 1 John 3:18-20; more at Beginning, God, Illusions, Knowledge)
Saturday, April 14, 2007
This last section of Psalm 22 [i.e., verses 27-31] reminds us of Hebrews 12:2: “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” The “joy” that was set before Jesus was, we feel, knowing of the riches which would come to his brethren out of his death. In short, we are his joy, set before him when on the cross. As we have seen, only as the circle of the love of Jesus becomes world wide and as big as history will it be complete.
... John R. Cogdell, “The humanity of Jesus Christ, as revealed in certain Psalms”, section IV
(see the book; see also Ps. 22:27-31; Heb. 12:2; more at Church, Cross, Faith, Jesus, Joy, World)
Sunday, April 15, 2007
By afflictions, God is spoiling us [i.e., taking away from us] of what otherwise might have spoiled us. When he makes the world too hot for us to hold, we let it go.
... John Powell
(see the book; see also Heb. 12:9-11; more at Affliction, God, Renunciation, Weakness, World)
Monday, April 16, 2007
I bind my heart, this tideTo the Galilean’s side,To the wounds of Calvary—To the Christ who died for me. I bind my soul this dayTo the brother far awayAnd the brother near at hand,In this town and in this land. I bind my heart in thrallTo God, the Lord of all,To God, the poor man’s Friend,And the Christ whom He did send. I bind myself to peace,To make strife and envy cease.God, knit Thou sure the cordOf my thralldom to my Lord.
... Lauchlan MacLean Watt (1867-1957), included in Masterpieces of Religious Verse, James Dalton Morrison, ed., New York: Harper & Bros., 1948, p. 373
(see the book; see also Rom. 6:17,18; more at Easter)
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
So long as we judge ourselves by human comparisons, there is plenty of room for self-satisfaction, and self-satisfaction kills faith, for faith is born of the sense of need. But when we compare ourselves with Jesus Christ, and through Him, with God, we are humbled to the dust, and then faith is born, for there is nothing left to do but to trust to the mercy of God.
... William Barclay (1907-1978), The Gospel of John, v. 1, Edinburgh: Saint Andrew Press, 1965, p. 201
(see the book; see also John 5:44-47; more at Faith)
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
Here [in Matthew 23] is an interpretation of Israel’s history according to which God’s people have always been disobedient and rebellious: their alienation from God, it is clearly implied, is to reach its climax in the murder of the Messiah himself.
... Anthony T. Hanson (1916-1991), The Church of the Servant, London: SCM Press, 1962, p. 36
(see the book; see also Matt. 23:37-39; more at Bible, Historical, Israel, Messiah, Murder)
Thursday, April 19, 2007
Commemoration of Alphege, Archbishop of Canterbury, Martyr, 1012
The Son of God... suffered unto the death, not that men might not suffer, but that their sufferings might be like His.
... George MacDonald (1824-1905), “The Consuming Fire”, in Unspoken Sermons [First Series], London: A. Strahan, 1867, p. 41
(see the book; see also 1 Pet. 4:13,14; more at Easter)
Friday, April 20, 2007
Perhaps we feel that we do not see much to encourage us. “I do not envy those who have to fight the battle of Christianity in the twentieth century,” wrote Marcus Dods. “Yes, perhaps I do; but it will be a stiff fight.” Of course, he did, and anybody with his valiant spirit would. There was a day when our Lord passed through cheering streets wildly enthusiastic; and another day when He watched the crowds deserting Him, till even the disciples themselves seemed to be withering, and He looked at them sadly. “Will you also go away?” He said. And Peter strode across the sudden empty spaces widening around Him, and put his back to Christ’s. “No,” he cried; “there are two of us, at least,” and faced the world, Christ’s poor minority of one. I would rather have been Peter than one of the shouting mob. And today, perhaps, we may get our chance of that.
... A. J. Gossip (1873-1954), From the Edge of the Crowd, Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1924, p. 173
(see the book; see also Matt. 26:33-35; more at Battle, Christ, Crowd, Disciple, Encouragement, Fight, Today, Weakness, World)
Saturday, April 21, 2007
Feast of Anselm, Abbot of Le Bec, Archbishop of Canterbury, Teacher, 1109
“It is finished.” It is hard for us to know the intonation with which these words of the dying Christ were spoken. If they came as the sufferer’s sigh of relief, they must also have been the worker’s glad cry of achievement. Everything had been done that could be. Man had been offered a sight of God as He really was. For those of us who believe that in seeing Jesus we see God, the Cross is not a coarse framework of blood-stained wood, but the most precious emblem of man’s dearest hopes. ... It is the great pledge which we sorely need, that love is stronger than hate, grace than sin, life than death.
... H. R. L. Sheppard (1880-1937), Two Days Before, New York: Macmillan Co., 1924, p. 65
(see the book; see also John 19:30; more at Christ, Death, Good Friday, Grace, Hatred, Life, Love, Sight, Sin, Strength)
Sunday, April 22, 2007
All the references to the empty tomb come in the Gospels, which were written for Christians who wanted to know the facts. In the public preaching, to those who were not yet convinced, as recorded in the Acts of the Apostles, there was an insistent emphasis on the resurrection, but not a single reference to the tomb. For this I can see only one explanation. There was no point in speaking of the empty tomb, for everyone—friend and foe alike—knew that it was empty. The only points worth arguing about were why it was empty, and what its emptiness proved.
... J. N. D. Anderson (1908-1994), Christianity: the Witness of History, Tyndale Press, 1969, p. 96
(see the book; see also John 20:8-9; more at Argument, Easter, Knowledge, Preach, Proof, Resurrection)
Monday, April 23, 2007
Feast of George, Martyr, Patron of England, c.304
Commemoration of Michael Ramsey, Archbishop of Canterbury, Teacher, 1988
I greet Thy sepulchre, salute Thy grave,That blest enclosure, where the angels gaveThe first glad tidings of Thy early light,And resurrection from the earth and night.I see that morning in Thy convert’s tears,Fresh as the dew, which but this dawning wears.I smell her spices; and her ointment yieldsAs rich a scent as the now primros’d fields:The Day-star smiles, and light, with the deceased,Now shines in all the chambers of the East.
... Henry Vaughan (1622-1695), The Poetical Works of Henry Vaughan, Boston: Osgood, 1871, p. 179-180
(see the book; see also John 20:11-18; more at Easter)
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
Commemoration of Mellitus, First Bishop of London, 624
The [Christian] “doctrines” are translations into our concepts and ideas of that which God has already expressed in language more adequate, namely the actual incarnation, crucifixion, and resurrection.
... C. S. Lewis (1898-1963), Letters of C. S. Lewis, ed. W. H. Lewis, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2003, letter, 1931, p. 189
(see the book; see also 1 Cor. 15:3-8; 1 Tim.3:15,16; more at Crucifixion, Dogma, Incarnation, Resurrection)
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Feast of Mark the Evangelist
There are, of course, interesting questions that can be asked about the nature of the transformation which our Lord’s body underwent in his resurrection, and if we know anything about physics and biology we are quite likely to ask them. But, since we are concerned with an occurrence which is [by hypothesis] unique in certain relevant aspects, we are most unlikely to be able to give confident answers to them. [Paul M.] van Buren’s remarks about biology and the twentieth century are nothing more than rhetoric or, at best, are simply empirical statements about his own psychology. The first century knew as well as the twentieth that dead bodies do not naturally come to life again, and no amount of twentieth-century knowledge about natural processes can tell us what may happen by supernatural means.
... E. L. Mascall (1905-1993), The Secularization of Christianity, London: Darton, Longman & Todd, 1966, p. 79-80
(see the book; see also John 6:39,40; 1 Cor. 13:9-12; more at Easter)
Thursday, April 26, 2007
It is a great mistake, and of very pernicious consequence to the souls of men, to imagine that the gospel is all promises on God’s part, and that our part is only to believe them, and to rely upon God for the performance of them, and to be very confident that He will make them good, though we do nothing else but only believe that He will do so. That the Christian religion is only a declaration of God’s good-will to us, without any expectation of duty from us: this is an error which one could hardly think could ever enter into any who have the liberty to read the Bible, and do attend to what they read and find there.The three great promises of the gospel are all very expressly contained in our Saviour’s first sermon upon the Mount. There we find the promise of blessedness often repeated; but never absolutely made, but upon certain conditions, plainly required on our parts; as repentance, humility, righteousness, mercy, peaceableness, meekness, patience. Forgiveness of sins is likewise promised; but only to those who make a penitent acknowledgement of them, and ask forgiveness for them, and are ready to grant that forgiveness to others, which they beg of God for themselves. The gift of God’s Holy Spirit is likewise promised, but it is upon condition of our earnest and importunate prayer to God. The gospel is everywhere full of precepts enjoining duty and obedience upon our part, as well as of promises on God’s part, assuring blessings to us; nay, full of terrible threatenings also if we disobey the precepts of the gospel.
... John Tillotson (1630-1694), Works of Dr. John Tillotson, v. V, London: J. F. Dove, for R. Priestley, 1820, Sermon XCVII, p. 205-206
(see the book; see also Mark 11:25-26; Tit. 2:11-14; 2 Pet. 1:4; more at Bible, Duty, Error, Forgiveness, Good will, Gospel, Humility, Meekness, Mercy, Obedience, Patience, Promise, Repentance, Righteousness)
Friday, April 27, 2007
Feast of Christina Rossetti, Poet, 1894
Good Friday Am I a stone, and not a sheepThat I can stand, O Christ, beneath Thy cross,To number drop by drop Thy Blood’s slow loss,And yet not weep? Not so those women lovedWho with exceeding grief lamented Thee;Not so fallen Peter weeping bitterly;Not so the thief was moved; Not so the Sun and MoonWhich hid their faces in a starless sky,A horror of great darkness at broad noon—I only I. Yet give not o’erBut seek Thy sheep, true Shepherd of the flock;Greater than Moses, turn and look once moreAnd smite a rock.
... Christina Rossetti (1830-1894), Christina Rossetti: the complete poems, London: Penguin Classics, 2001, p. 180-181
(see the book; see also Heb. 3:1-4; more at Easter)
Saturday, April 28, 2007
Commemoration of Peter Chanel, Religious, Missionary in the South Pacific, Martyr, 1841
The Gospel used to be presented as an appeal to believe in the Saviour who “did it all for me long ago,” and then retired to a remote heaven where He receives the homage of believers till He comes again to inaugurate the Millennium. The mind of our generation, having little comprehension or taste for such a message, is usually content to try to discover “the Jesus of history,” conceived as a human example and teacher of a distant past. Meanwhile, there exists always alongside all forms of religious belief the great tradition of mystical experience. The mystic knows that, whatever be the truth about an historic act or person, there is a Spirit dwelling in man. In our time even natural science abates its arrogant denials and admits the possibility of such immanence... The weak point of mysticism, as seen at least by a matter-of-fact person, is that it is apt to be so nebulous ethically. What the Immanent is, those who claim most traffic with It can often least tell us. Is It a power making for righteousness, or is It a higher synthesis of good and evil? Or is It not a moral—that is to say, not a personal—Being at all?... The raising of these questions is not intended to throw any doubt upon the validity of mystical experience as such; but we have a right to ask what content is given in the experience. Paul was a mystic, but all his mystical experience had a personal object. It was Jesus Christ, a real, living person—historic, yet not of the past alone; divine, yet not alien from humanity.
... C. Harold Dodd (1884-1973), The Meaning of Paul for Today, London: Swarthmore, 1920, reprint, Fount Paperbacks, 1978, p. 128-129
(see the book; see also Rom. 13:14; more at Gospel)
Sunday, April 29, 2007
Feast of Catherine of Siena, Mystic, Teacher, 1380
You, O eternal Trinity, are a deep sea, into which the more I enter the more I find, and the more I find the more I seek. The soul cannot be satiated in your abyss, for she continually hungers after you, the eternal Trinity, desiring to see you with the light of your light. As the hart desires the springs of living water, so my soul desires to leave the prison of this dark body and see you in truth.
... Catherine of Siena (1347-1380), Dialog of Catherine of Siena , Treatise of Obedience, xi.
(see the book; see also John 4:10; more at Prayers, Trinity)
Monday, April 30, 2007
Commemoration of Pandita Mary Ramabai, Translator of the Scriptures, 1922
If ever I reach heaven I expect to find three wonders there: first, to meet some I had not thought to see there; second, to miss some I had expected to see there; and third—the greatest wonder of all—to find myself there.
... John Newton (1725-1807)
(see also 1 Cor. 15:9-10; more at Heaven, Humor, Sight, Wonder)
Welcome to the CQOD archive. This page contains all the quotations for April, 2007.
means text and bibliography have been verified.
Here are some important links to help you get around:
Previous month Or, request CQOD in HTML form: After entering and sending your email address, check your mailbox.
CQOD for today
CQOD on the go!
CQOD daily index
All monthly archives
What’s New on CQOD
Search CQOD (or see below)
Facebook CQOD Fan Page
Follow CQOD on Twitter
Use our double opt-in listserve to receive plain-text CQOD by email:
More about CQOD by email
CQOD on the Web
CQOD Liturgical Calendar
Simple Songs for Psalms
Quotations Bible Study
Also visit these allied publications:
↑ Grab this Headline Animator