by W.B. Screws

The Pilgrim's Messenger

"Have a pattern of sound words which you hear from me, in faith and love
which are in Christ Jesus."--11 Timothy 1:13
Published Monthly By W. B. SCREWS, Glennville, Georgia
Twenty-five Cents a Year

Volume XXX

November, 1950

Number 4

Entered at the postoffice at Glennville, Ga., as second-class matter.

When the Jews failed to believe the gospel, Paul said, "To you first was is necessary that the word of God be spoken. Yet since, in fact, you are thrusting it away, and are judging yourselves not worthy of eonian life, lo! we are turning to the nation's, Acts 13:46.

There is a lesson here that we seem to have missed. The Jews judged that they, themselves, were not worthy of the life of the ages, and, therefore, they did not believe what the word of God said to them. They were what we would call "unconverted", and yet they said they were unworthy of the blessings that had been mentioned by Paul. It has been thought that only saints think themselves unworthy. Here was a group of people who showed no sign of being saints, and yet they were bothered by a sense of unworthiness. And because they felt to be so unworthy, they could not believe that the promises belonged to them.

People, not merely saints, but also those who are not saved, find that a feeling of unworthiness keeps them from believing God's promises.

When I was a boy, I was told, repeatedly, that if you feel yourself to be not worthy, that is a sure sign that you are in touch with Christ, spiritually. Before one could "join the church" be had to proclaim himself unworthy.

I know that a feeling of unworthiness is NOT a sure sign that one is not in spiritual touch with Christ, but, on the other hand, it is not a certain sign that one IS in spiritual touch with Him. It is a sign that the person, whether or not His spirit has been touched by the spirit of Christ, is NOT being influenced by that spirit, but he is under the influence of erroneous teaching, which is to be found in all the churches.

For, nowhere do the scriptures speak of a saint as unworthy!

Not only did this feeling of unworthiness keep those Jews from receiving the blessings that are promised in the word of God, but the majority of saints are kept from His blessings, under a false sense of their own unworthiness.

This vicious teaching is hurtful. But that fact that saints accept it, and actually FEEL the force of its influence, shows that, through the exercise of THOUGHT, a person may come to feel ANY condition. This is true of every person. Yet there are those who sneer at the idea that thought is powerful!

Why should we be unworthy, when we are in touch with Christ? This expression, "in touch with Christ", does not fully express what I mean. The spirit of Christ has come in contact with our spirit, and the two are mixed, so that they become ONE spirit. Paul says that he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit. No longer do we have a spirit that is separate from the spirit of Christ. They become one spirit. Paul says, "Living in me is Christ". We have not merely reformed. We have the very life of Christ. If this means anything at all, it means that we are as worthy as is Christ, for, in a sense, we have become Him, and He has become us. Spirit is the main thing. Christ and I have one spirit in me, and, therefore, I refuse to believe that I am unworthy. I am worthy if He is!

And, believing this, I never think of any blessing that God has promised, as being better than I am worthy of. Therefore, I can pray in faith for everything that He has promised.

This widespread belief in unworthiness is one of the most baneful things that oppose my ministry. Often I come in touch with saints who cling so tenaciously to the idea of unworthiness, that they can see that certain blessings belong to others, but not to THEM. They are too unworthy! God has it in for hem, and they dare not hope for an abundance of anything!

If this were true, where is grace? Does grace go all over, looking for a worthy person on whom to bestow its benefits? No! Grace makes us worthy, and bestows its benefits.

That is, it bestows them where there is belief. A saint may be so completely under the influence of this baneful teaching of unworthiness, that he misses most of the benefits that grace has for him. Grace HAS prepared these blessings, but it takes faith to get them. A person may have faith that Christ in his Savior, and still indulge in disbelief to the extent that he goes through life without many of the blessings that would make him happy in this life.

No other false teachings seems to have become so securely imbedded in the minds of those who believe that Christ is their Savior, as the thought that we are unworthy, and, therefore, God has it in for us, and can be expected to bestow on us only a very meager portion of His universe-full of blessings. Is not this a slander on God? Is He peevish, and spiteful? I repeat, this idea is not gotten from the word of God; it is the product of false teaching, and may affect either, saint or non-saint.

I have in mind a family, every one of which---grand-parents, children, in-laws, and grandchildren---seem to always think in terms of calamity, sickness, poverty. And there is hardly a day when some member is not sick, and calamities---far more numerous than can be accounted for by the "law of average", come upon them. Making a good salary does not count, for they think in terms of poverty and lack, and they never make enough to do more than "get along". The idea of negation has been instilled into them for years. They judge themselves unworthy, and they receive only what the unworthy are expected to get.

The fact that you FEEL unworthy, does not mean that you actually ARE so. But the law of faith works this way: "According to your faith, be it to you". If your belief tells you that you have no worthiness, even in connection with Christ, then it is so, to you. This belief has led you to doubt the power of grace, and the willingness of God to bless you, and, therefore, you cannot ask in faith.

The Bible abounds in promise of blessing to the believer. You find nothing good said of the doubter!

I am not discussing the passage in Acts 13:46, except to show that unbelief keeps people from obtaining the blessings that belong to the ages. I am not saying anything about endless salvation in the glory. THAT does not depend on our attitude.

It is in this life that we need so many different blessings. Do you need material things. "My God shall be filling your every need in accord with His riches in glory in Christ Jesus". You need money on which to live, and with which to pay your debts. Don't try to extricate God from difficulty by saying that you don't need those things, when you don't have them. You DO need them! God DOES provide them. Still, you may not get them, because your false belief tells you that you are not worthy of them. There are many things that you need, that are not manifested in your experience.

A feeling of unworthiness, which breeds doubts, keeps you from having them, in manifest form. Faith is one of the greatest things---perhaps THE greatest, with the exception of love---that will ever come into your life.

You cannot count your blessings. And yet there are many more for you. You may be blessedly conscious of the indwelling of the Father and the Son. Think what a blessing THIS is! They are present all the time, by their spirits. While the Father is in you, you are also in Him. In Him you live and move and have your being, while He lives and moves and has His expression in you.


Don't stop to turn the critic's eye
    On neighbor, friend, or foe;
A kicking, balky horse can't make
    The wheels of traffic go.
There is an eye that's looking on,
    To see the whole showdown.
The Master's eye sees every heart
    Of every bum in town.
Let's ask the owner of that eye
    To lend it, till we see
So truly, that our sight shall beam
    In heaven's charity.
                                Lillian M. Denis,
                                Saco, Maine, shut-in

Don't you love this poem?

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