INTERESTING FACTS : ALEXANDER HAMILTON, REVOLUTIONARY GENERAL; SIGNER OF THE CONSTITUTION; AUTHOR OF THE FEDERALIST PAPERS; SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY
FOLLOWING HIS DUEL WITH AARON BURR, IN THOSE FINAL TWENTY FOUR HOURS WHILE LIFE STILL REMAINED IN HIM, HAMILTON CALLED FOR TWO MINISTERS, THE REV. J. M. MASON AND THE REV. BENJAMIN MOORE, TO PRAY WITH HIM AND ADMINISTER COMMUNION TO HIM. EACH OF THOSE TWO MINISTERS REPORTED WHAT TRANSPIRED. THE REV. BENJAMIN MOORE REPORTED:
IMMEDIATELY AFTER HE WAS BROUGHT FROM [THE FIELD] . . . A MESSAGE WAS SENT INFORMING ME OF THE SAD EVENT, ACCOMPANIED BY A REQUEST FROM GENERAL HAMILTON THAT I WOULD COME TO HIM FOR THE PURPOSE OF ADMINISTERING THE HOLY COMMUNION. I WENT. . . . I PROCEEDED TO CONVERSE WITH HIM ON THE SUBJECT OF HIS RECEIVING THE COMMUNION; AND TOLD HIM THAT WITH RESPECT TO THE QUALIFICATIONS OF THOSE WHO WISHED TO BECOME PARTAKERS OF THAT HOLY ORDINANCE, MY INQUIRES COULD NOT BE MADE IN LANGUAGE MORE EXPRESSIVE THAN THAT WHICH WAS USED BY OUR [OWN] CHURCH. - [I ASKED], "DO YOU SINCERELY REPENT OF YOUR SINS PAST? HAVE YOU A LIVELY FAITH IN GOD'S MERCY THROUGH CHRIST, WITH A THANKFUL REMEMBRANCE OF THE DEATH OF CHRIST? AND ARE YOU DISPOSED TO LIVE IN LOVE AND CHARITY WITH ALL MEN?" HE LIFTED UP HIS HANDS AND SAID, "WITH THE UTMOST SINCERITY OF HEART I CAN ANSWER THOSE QUESTIONS IN THE AFFIRMATIVE - I HAVE NO ILL WILL AGAINST COL. BURR. I MET HIM WITH A FIXED RESOLUTION TO DO HIM NO HARM - I FORGIVE ALL THAT HAPPENED." . . . THE COMMUNION WAS THEN ADMINISTERED, WHICH HE RECEIVED WITH GREAT DEVOTION, AND HIS HEART AFTERWARDS APPEARED TO BE PERFECTLY AT REST. I SAW HIM AGAIN THIS MORNING, WHEN, WITH HIS LAST FALTERING WORDS, HE EXPRESSED A STRONG CONFIDENCE IN THE MERCY OF GOD THROUGH THE INTERCESSION OF THE REDEEMER. I REMAINED WITH HIM UNTIL 2 O'CLOCK THIS AFTERNOON, WHEN DEATH CLOSED THE AWFUL SCENE - HE EXPIRED WITHOUT A STRUGGLE, AND ALMOST WITHOUT A GROAN. BY REFLECTING ON THIS MELANCHOLY EVENT, LET THE HUMBLE BELIEVER BE ENCOURAGED EVER TO HOLD FAST THAT PRECIOUS FAITH WHICH IS THE ONLY SOURCE OF TRUE CONSOLATION IN THE LAST EXTREMITY OF NATURE. [AND L]ET THE INFIDEL BE PERSUADED TO ABANDON HIS OPPOSITION TO THAT GOSPEL WHICH THE STRONG, INQUISITIVE, AND COMPREHENSIVE MIND OF A HAMILTON EMBRACED.
ONE OTHER CONSEQUENCE OF HAMILTON'S UNTIMELY DEATH WAS THAT IT PERMANENTLY HALTED THE FORMATION OF A RELIGIOUS SOCIETY HAMILTON HAD PROPOSED. HAMILTON SUGGESTED THAT IT BE NAMED THE CHRISTIAN CONSTITUTIONAL SOCIETY, AND LISTED TWO GOALS FOR ITS FORMATION: FIRST, THE SUPPORT OF THE CHRISTIAN RELIGION; AND SECOND, THE SUPPORT OF THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES. THIS ORGANIZATION WAS TO HAVE NUMEROUS CLUBS THROUGHOUT EACH STATE WHICH WOULD MEET REGULARLY AND WORK TO ELECT TO OFFICE THOSE WHO REFLECTED THE GOALS OF THE CHRISTIAN CONSTITUTIONAL SOCIETY.
DAILY READING : 1 CHRONICLES 14 - 17; 18 - 21
TEXT : 1Ch 17:1 Now it came to pass, as David sat in his house, that David said to Nathan the prophet, Lo, I dwell in an house of cedars, but the ark of the covenant of the LORD remaineth under curtains. 1Ch 17:2 Then Nathan said unto David, Do all that is in thine heart; for God is with thee. 1Ch 17:3 And it came to pass the same night, that the word of God came to Nathan, saying, 1Ch 17:4 Go and tell David my servant, Thus saith the LORD, Thou shalt not build me an house to dwell in: 1Ch 17:5 For I have not dwelt in an house since the day that I brought up Israel unto this day; but have gone from tent to tent, and from one tabernacle to another.
THEME : THE NATURAL MIND AND THE SPIRITUAL MIND
In the eight chapters of 1st Chronicles 14 - 21, I have posted here, an outline from the Summarized Bible to help you in your reading.
1 Chronicles 14:1-17
Contents: The prosperity of King David. Double defeat of the Philistines.
Characters: God, David, Hiram.
Conclusion: David's frequent inquiry of God should direct us in all our ways to acknowledge Him and in all our perplexities to fly to Him that we might perceive God to go before us.
Key Word: Kingdom exalted, 1Ch_14:2.
Strong Verse: 1Ch_14:16.
Striking Facts: 1Ch_14:17. God has highly exalted our Redeemer, David's greater Son and given Him a name above every name.
1 Chronicles 15:1-29
Contents: Ark brought to Jerusalem in the appointed way.
Characters: God, David, Zadok, Abiathar, Michael, Uriel, Asaiah, Joel, Shemaiah, Eliel.
Conclusion: It is not enough that we seek God in a due ordinance, but we must seek Him in due order. When those who have suffered for their irregularity learn from God's Word to be obedient in all details, the correction is well bestowed.
Key Word: Ark brought, 1Ch_15:15, 1Ch_15:25.
Strong Verses: 1Ch_15:13, 1Ch_15:28.
Striking Facts: 1Ch_15:26. Those who bear the vessels of the Lord have great need of divine help in their ministrations, that Christ may be glorified in them and the churches edified through them.
1 Chronicles 16:1-43
Contents: David's festival and psalm of thanksgiving. The ark established in Jerusalem.
Characters: God, David, Zadok, Asaph, Obed-edom, Heman, Jeduthun.
Conclusion: Though God's Word may be clouded and eclipsed for a time, it will at length shine out of obscurity, wherefore let us encourage ourselves to triumph and trust in God and glorify Him continually by our praises.
Key Word: Praise, 1Ch_16:4.
Strong Verses: 1Ch_16:8, 1Ch_16:15, 1Ch_16:31, 1Ch_16:34.
Striking Facts: 1Ch_16:10. Ceremonial worship was a divine institution containing the types of the mediation of Christ and could not therefore be omitted. So the church should keep up the appointed ordinances in which Christ is remembered, until He comes.
1 Chronicles 17:1-27
Contents: David's desire to build the temple. The Davidie covenant and David's prayer.
Characters: God, David, Nathan.
Conclusion: Thrice happy is that people whose God is Jehovah, for He will be to them a God all-sufficient (1Ch_17:27). Whom He blesses are truly and eternally blessed, therefore let our desires and hopes be for things eternal.
Key Word: Covenant, 1Ch_17:23.
Strong Verses: 1Ch_17:20, 1Ch_17:27.
Striking Facts: 1Ch_17:7. David is here a type of Christ in the flesh, the Shepherd King. At His first coming He took the Shepherd's place. At His return He will take the place of ruler over Israel.
1 Chronicles 18:1-17
Contents: David's kingdom fully established.
Characters: God, David, Hadarezer, Tou, Hadoram, Abishai, Joab, Jehoshaphat, Benaiah.
Conclusion: Those who take God along with them whithersoever they go may expect to prosper and be preserved whithersoever they go.
Key Word: Judgment and justice, 1Ch_18:14.
Strong Verses: 1Ch_18:6, 1Ch_18:13.
Striking Facts: All opposing rule will eventually be put down by the Son of David and the most inveterate enemies shall fall before Him, acknowledging that He is Lord to the glory of the Father.
1 Chronicles 19:1-19
Contents: Ammonite-Syrian war.
Characters: God, David, Joab, Abishai, Hanun, Shophach, Hadarezer.
Conclusion: Those who design ill themselves are apt to be jealous and to suspect ill of others without cause, but the hearts of such are marked for ruin. Right will prevail at last.
Key Word: Misjudged, 1Ch_19:3.
Strong Verses: 1Ch_19:13.
Striking Facts: 1Ch_19:19. Let those who in vain have stood out against Christ be wise for themselves and agree with Him quickly while they are in the way.
1 Chronicles 20:1-8
Contents: Joab and David take Rabbah. War with Philistines.
Characters: David, Joab, Sibbechai, Sippai, Jonathan, Elhanan.
Conclusion: The power and pride of great men against us need not terrify us if we have the power and peace of God with us. God takes pleasure in abasing lofty looks and mortifying the giants who array themselves against Christianity.
Key Word: War, 1Ch_20:4.
1 Chronicles 21:1-30
Contents: David's sin in numbering the people. Joab's faithful protest. David's choice of punishment.
Characters: God, Satan, David, Joab, Gad, Ornan, angel (Jesus).
Conclusion: God does not judge of sin as we do. What appears to man to be but a small offense may be a great sin in the eyes of God who knows men's principles, being a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. His judgments are according to the truth.
Key Word: Sin, 1Ch_21:8.
Strong Verses: 1Ch_21:8, 1Ch_21:13.
Striking Facts: 1Ch_21:18. If we have sinned, the safest thing to do is to flee to Christ, who is an altar and sacrifice, for through Him alone there is hope of winning back the joy of salvation and getting favor with God.
TRUTH FOR TODAY : WE NEED THE SPIRIT OF GOD TO ILLUMINATE OUR MINDS TO THE TRUTH OF GOD'S WORD!
In the text of 1st Chronicles 17, we find an interesting illustration of our need of the Holy Spirit to know the will and Word of God. Nathan, knowing David was anointed of God, gives his approval of David's desire to build a Temple to the Lord. However, later that evening, God speaks to him contradicting his advice and encouragement to David in building the Temple. God reveals to Nathan, His plan to establish David's throne and kingdom, and His will to have David's son build the Temple. From this, we learn important lessons.
Although Nathan is a true Man of God and a prophet, when he encourages David to build he is speaking from his own heart and understanding and not the mind or will of God. This is a striking example of divine inspiration of the Bible, because we see Nathan reverse his advice once he hears from God. In other words, good men can say good things that are not God's will or Word. Prior to God's revelation, he speaks as merely a man. After God's revelation, he speaks the Word of God. Thus, we have the basis for the Inspired record of the Bible. That is, men [only] spoke [i.e. in the written record of the Bible]as they were "moved by the Holy Ghost."
"For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost." [2Pe 1:21]
John Gill remarks on 2 Peter 1:21.
For the prophecy,.... The whole Scripture, all the prophetic writings; so the Jews call the Scriptures הנבואה, "the prophecy" (g), by way of eminence, and from the subject matter of the sacred word:
came not in old time by the will of man; was not brought into the world at first, or in any period of time, as and when man would, according to his pleasure, and as he thought fit: neither Moses, nor David, nor Isaiah, nor Jeremiah, nor Ezekiel, nor Daniel, nor any other of the prophets, prophesied when they pleased, but when it was the will of God they should; they were stirred up to prophesy, not by any human impulse, but by a divine influence: with this agrees what R. Sangari says,
"that the speech of the prophets, when the Holy Spirit clothed them, in all their words was directed by a divine influence, and the prophet could not speak in the choice of his own words,''
or according to his will:
but holy men of God; such as he sanctified by his Spirit, and separated from the rest of men to such peculiar service; and whom he employed as public ministers of his word: for so this phrase "men", or "man of God", often signifies, 1Sa_2:27.
spake, as they were moved by the Holy Ghost; who illuminated their minds, gave them a knowledge of divine things, and a foresight of future ones; dictated to them what they should say or write; and moved upon them strongly, and by a secret and powerful impulse stirred them up to deliver what they did, in the name and fear of God: which shows the authority of the Scriptures, that they are the word of God, and not of men; and as such should be attended to, and received with all affection and reverence; and that the Spirit is the best interpreter of them, who first dictated them; and that they are to be the rule of our faith and practice; nor are we to expect any other, until the second coming of Christ.
The People's New Testament adds -
That no prophecy . . . is of any private interpretation. Is not an interpretation of the knowledge and feelings of the prophet, but of the will of God. The next verse shows that this is the meaning.
For no prophecy. No scriptural prophecy is due to the will of man, but all came from men speaking from God when moved by the Holy Spirit. Prophecy is God's word, not the words of man.
In 1 Chronicles verse 4, we have a notable phrase to which we should give heed.
1Ch 17:4 "Go and tell David my servant, Thus saith the LORD, Thou shalt not build me an house to dwell in:"
It is this, "Thus saith the Lord," that makes the Bible what it is - a divinely inspired record of the mind, will, and determination of God. If Nathan's advice were followed who knows what would have become of David's ambition to build the Temple. Nathan as already stated is a prophet. However, when he speaks to David he is not representing the mind and will of God. This is a significant point of theology, because it shows the dependence on the Holy Spirit that those whom God chose to write the Bible had. They did not speak their own mind, but rather the mind of God in what they penned in the Holy Scriptures.
Nathan demonstrates this well. He is able to speak his own mind ["Then Nathan said unto David, Do all that is in thine heart; for God is with thee."] but amends his advice when he hears from God ["And it came to pass the same night, that the word of God came to Nathan, saying, Go and tell David my servant, Thus saith the LORD, Thou shalt not build me an house to dwell in:"].
Thus, in such a brief fashion we observe and discover a compelling fact. That is, the prophets had a mind of their own and could exercise it, but they knew the voice of the Lord and only spoke [wrote] what He said to them. This is a critical point of theology since we now see clearly how the Bible is a book written by God who used men; faithful and trustworthy men who wrote His Word[s], His will, His prophecies, His commands, His principles, and His report.
The men who wrote the Word of God were God's secretaries. They had a mind of their own and could exercise it at will. However, when they wrote the Bible, they had been contacted, instructed, and ordered by God what to write. We then ought to be encouraged by this example of Nathan can be assured of the trustworthiness of the prophets of God who wrote His book for our benefit. We too should realize out need of the Holy Spirit to illuminate our minds that we can understand God's Book. It is our roadmap in this life to find our way home! That is, the Book of God tells us of Jesus Christ - that He is the way, the truth, and the life, and will lead us all the way to His kingdom! All of this, by the Holy Spirit who enlightens us after we are called, justified, and will one day be glorified!