Tuesday, May 9, 2017

As Clear as Crystal---A Collection of Robert McCheyne Quotations

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Robert Murray M'Cheyne (1813-1843, Scotland) quotations


"A man is what he is on his knees before God, and nothing more."

"For every look at self, take ten looks at Christ."

"The Christian is a person who makes it easy for others to believe in God."


"Study universal holiness of life. Your whole usefulness depends on this, for your sermons last but an hour or two; your life preaches all the week. If Satan can only make a covetous minister a lover of praise, of pleasure, of good eating, he has ruined your ministry. Give yourself to prayer, and get your texts, your thoughts, your words from God. Luther spent his best three hours in prayer."


  "I ought to pray before seeing any one. Often when I sleep long, or meet with others early, it is eleven or twelve o'clock before I begin secret prayer. This is a wretched system. It is unscriptural. Christ arose before day and went into a solitary place. 

  David says: 'Early will I seek thee'; 'Thou shalt early hear my voice.' Family prayer loses much of its power and sweetness, and I can do no good to those who come to seek from me. The conscience feels guilty, the soul unfed, the lamp not trimmed. Then when in secret prayer the soul is often out of tune, I feel it is far better to begin with God—to see his face first, to get my soul near him before it is near another."


"Rose early to seek God and found Him whom my soul loveth. Who would not rise early to meet such company?" [Journal: 23 February1834]


"Most of God's people are contented to be saved from the hell that is without; they are not so anxious to be saved from the hell that is within."

"It is a sure mark of grace to desire more."

"If I could hear Christ praying for me in the next room, I would not fear a million enemies. Yet distance makes no difference. He is praying for me."



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"Depend upon it, it is God's Word, not our comment upon God's Word, that saves souls."


"Get your texts from God—your thoughts, your words, from God. In great measure, according to the purity and perfection's of the instrument, will be success. It is not great talents God blesses so much as great likeness to Jesus. A holy minister is an awful weapon in the hand of God. A word spoken by you when your conscience is clear, and your heart full of God's Spirit, is worth ten thousands words spoken in unbelief and sin."


"Live near to God, and all things will appear little to you in comparison with eternal realities."


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"A great part of my time is spent in getting my heart in tune for prayer. It is the link that connects earth with heaven."

"Lord make me as holy as a pardoned sinner can be."

"Just so take Christ away, and the whole arch of truth becomes a heap of rubbish. The very same truths may be there; but they are all fallen without coherence, without order, without end."

"Oh how sweet to work for God all day, and then lie down at night beneath His smile."

"The greatest need of my people is my personal holiness."

"A man who loves you the most is the man who tells you the most truth about yourself."


"Our soul should be a mirror of Christ; we should reflect every feature: for every grace in Christ there should be a counterpart in us." [Letter: 26 February 1840]


"Every wise workman takes his tools away from the work from time to time that they may be ground and sharpened; so does the only-wise Jehovah take his ministers oftentimes away into darkness and loneliness and trouble, that he may sharpen and prepare them for harder work in his service."


"You will be incomplete Christians if you do not look for the coming again of the Lord Jesus"


" 'If I knew I were one of God's elect, I would come to Christ; but I fear I am not.' To you I answer: nobody ever came to Christ because he knew himself to be one of the elect. It is quite true that God has of His mere good pleasure elected some to everlasting life, but they never knew it until they believed in Christ. Christ nowhere commands the elect to come to him. He commands all men everywhere to repent and believe the gospel. The question for you is not, 'Am I one of the elect?' but 'Am I a sinner?' Christ came to save sinners."


"I know well that when Christ is nearest, Satan also is busiest."

"One gem from that ocean is worth all the pebbles from earthly streams."
[speaking of the Scriptures]

"Joy is increased by spreading it to others."

"It is not the tempest, nor the earthquake, nor the fire, but the still small voice of the Spirit that carries on the glorious work of saving souls."

"You will never find Jesus so precious as when the world is one vast howling wilderness. Then he is like a rose blooming in the midst of the desolation, a rock rising above the storm." [Letter: 9 March 1843]


  "I am tempted to think that I am now an established Christian,—that I have overcome this or that lust so long,—that I have got into the habit of the opposite grace,—so that there is no fear; I may venture very near the temptation—nearer than other men.

  This is a lie of Satan. One might as well speak of gunpowder getting by habit of resisting fire, so as not to catch spark. As long as powder is wet, it resists the spark; but when it becomes dry, it is ready to explode at the first touch. As long as the Spirit dwells in my heart, He deadens me to sin, so that, if lawfully called through temptation, I may reckon upon God carrying me through. But when the Spirit leaves me, I am like dry gunpowder. Oh for a sense of this!"


"Even in the wildest storms the sky is not all dark; and so in the darkest dealings of God with His children, there are always some bright tokens for good." [Letter: 6 February 1839]


"O for true unfeigned humility," cried M'Cheyne. "I do not know half of my pride." So M'Cheyne commented of one particular Sunday—"a day of much danger from flattery and pride."



"Set NOT your hearts on the flowers of this world. They shall fade and die. Prize the Rose of Sharon and the Lily of the Valley. He changes not! Live nearer to Christ than to any person on this earth; so that when they are taken, you may have Him to love and lean upon."



*McCheyne's famous Hymn "When This Passing World is Done"(1837)