Unreasonable Expectations – JC Ryle

The hard judgments and unreasonable expectations of old disciples have often driven back and discouraged young beginners in the school of Christ. 

– JC Ryle –
from Expository Thoughts on the Gospels, 1856

Give Yourself to Reading – Charles Spurgeon

As the apostle says to Timothy, so also he says to everyone, “Give yourself to reading.” He who will not use the thoughts of other men’s brains proves that he has no brains of his own. You need to read. Renounce as much as you will all light literature, but study as much as possible sound theological works, especially the Puritanic writers, and expositions of the Bible. The best way for you to spend your leisure is to be either reading or praying.

– Charles Spurgeon –

Cream of the Morning – Charles Spurgeon

“To show forth thy loving kindness in the morning.” Psalms 92:2

We are full of vigor then. We will be tired before night comes round. Perhaps in the heat of the day we will be exhausted. Let us take care, while we are fresh, to give the cream of the morning to God.

– Charles Spurgeon – 
from Spurgeon on Praise

Serious Meditation on Holy Truths – Thomas Brooks

Remember that it is not hasty reading—but serious meditation on holy and heavenly truths, which makes them prove sweet and profitable to the soul. It is not the mere touching of the flower by the bee which gathers honey—but her abiding for a time on the flower which draws out the sweet. It is not he who reads most, but he who meditates most—who will prove to be the choicest, sweetest, wisest and strongest Christian.

– Thomas Brooks –

Cheap and Costly Grace – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession, absolution without personal confession. Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the Cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate.

Costly grace is the treasure hidden in the field; for the sake of it a man will gladly go and sell all that he has. It is the pearl of great price to buy which the merchant will sell all his goods. It is the kingly rule of Christ, for whose sake a man will pluck out the eye which causes him to stumble, it is the call of Jesus Christ at which the disciple leaves his nets and follows him.

Costly grace is the gospel which must be sought again and again, the gift which must the asked for, the door at which a man must knock.

Such grace is costly because it calls us to follow, and it is grace because it calls us to follow Jesus Christ. It is costly because it costs a man his life, and it is grace because it gives a man the only true life. It is costly because it condemns sin, and grace because it justifies the sinner. Above all, it is costly because it cost God the life of his Son: “ye were bought at a price, and what has cost God much cannot be cheap for us. Above all, it is grace because God did not reckon his Son too dear a price to pay for our life, but delivered him up for us.

– Dietrich Bonhoeffer – 
from The Cost of Discipleship