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 XXXIV

March, 1955

Number 8

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

The widow of Zarephath was sadly gathering wood to cook her last meal. Then she and her son would die of starvation, she thought. But a man was approaching, and when he spoke to her he demanded the impossible. He asked her to bring him some water and bread.

She was awfully sorry, but she had only a little meal and oil, she said, and she was just in the act of cooking the last, and then die, she told him. Surely he would not demand her last crumb for himself.

But Elijah, (for this was his name), told her to bring him some bread first, and then cook for herself and son. He then assured her that the Lord had said that the meal and oil would not be exhausted.

She hastened to do his bidding, and behold! the provision did not give out. The man remained at her home, and they ate daily. There was always plenty.

This beautiful and heartening story is told in I Kings 17. Why was it left on record in the word of God? Paul says whatsoever was written before is for our teaching, that we may have expectation. What expectation can we have from this story, if we believe, as many do, that it was for the time of which it spoke, and has no relation to us? What good is it if we teach that God does no do likewise for us today?

To me it means that God looks out for our sustenance, and that we need not be afraid of starvation if we trust Him and do His bidding. This is a time when much money is needed, if we are to live. But our God is not a Pauper. He can see to it that we have much, in this time of great demand, as well as He could see to it that the widow had plenty.

The trouble is, we have been taught that God does not take our needs into consideration, and that we should not depend on Him to do it. Elijah asked that he be served first. This was not greediness. It merely shows that God should be first in our consideration, for he is declared to be a man of God.

If she had cooked for herself and son first, the story might have been different. Indeed it would not have been related at all, for she would have been doing as the human will dictates.


"Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a draught." This is what Jesus told the disciples after they had toiled all night and had caught nothing. Peter said to Him, "Master, we have toiled all night and have taken nothing. Nevertheless, at Thy word, I will let down the net".

Can you imagine a better reason for letting down the net, than the word of Jesus? They had TOILED all night, and not a fist did they get. They were discouraged. But not enough to keep them from acting on the word of their Master. They launched out, and let down the nets, and they enclosed a great multitude of fishes. They did not toil this time. The fish were right there, ready to be caught. All they had to do was to let down the net, and haul in the fish.

They had been fishing near the shore, evidently expecting only a meager catch. They toiled much and caught nothing. Now they went out in the deep, and the haul was enormous. Is there not a lesson here? How often our blessings are small, because we do not expect much! God is not a pauper. His gifts can be plentiful, if we are out in the deep, expecting blessings suitable for one who is unlimited in wealth. God asks us to trust Him. To the expectant ones, He promises blessings that "there shall not be room to contain it". If I need much, why should I not expect much? "Our God will supply our every need", says Paul.

The fish were material supply. They would increase the riches of the fishermen. In letting down the net at the word of Christ, they accepted what He had in store for them. Our prayers and expectations do not change God. The fish were already there, before the fisherman launched out and let down their nets. They would have remained there, but uncaught, if they had NOT launched out. So, you see, they accepted what God was willing to give them. Their trust did not make God willing. But it brought to them the fishes.

Is there not a lesson here for us? God, help us to act on it!


My nerves need soothing, their power for good restored.

I do not seek this by going to a baseball game nor by going to any other place where there is noise. Quiet is what I need. I need to be quiet with God. There is far too much excitement in the world. This tears up nerves. It does not soothe them.

Instead, I get quiet with God, after asking Him to bless me. You don't have to be quiet in order for God to extend His blessing, but you do have to be so in order to receive it. If you are in a tense state, the blessing does not "take". It goes over your head.

I talk with God---or, rather, I listen while He talks with me. I do not say, "Hear Lord, for Thy servant speaketh". I say, "Speak, Lord, for Thy servant heareth." God is not nearly so anxious to hear me talk, as He is to have me listen to Him.

He talks to me by my thoughts. Therefore, I must have thoughts of humility and of devotion to Him. I make my mind as nearly a blank as possible. God can talk best when our mind in not running to and fro trying to formulate some plan for our work. In my thought He tells me that it is His business to look after me, and that His Son has been sent to "be about the Fathers business". Moreover, He tells me that when the Son went away from the earth, He sent the holy spirit to do the Father's business, which is also the Son's business. The spirit does it more widely, for the Son had restricted Himself to working where He was, while the work of the Spirit is universal. It is everywhere.

He tells me that after showing His power by resisting the trials of Satan, the Son began His work of caring for the bodies and minds of people, as well as teaching the truth of His Father, and wound up His earthy career by suffering as a basis for healing, (sa. 53:4, 5, and then dying as a basis of salvation.

I had heard. I was happy. I arose and went back to my work refreshed in body and in mind and in spirit.

I have obligations to meet in the near future, but is not that the Father's business? I will not worry about them, for they are not due. The Father, Who is "rich in houses and lands", will look after them through His Son and the holy spirit.

Did not the Son tell the fishermen to launch out into the deep, and let down their nets? And was not the result a miraculous draught of fishes?

I will not worry about sickness, for did He not heal all manner of diseases? And was not this part of "the Father's business"?


"Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures. he was entombed, and He was roused the third day according tot he scriptures". Paul says this was what He taught the people at Corinth. His meetings there were filled with great success. Many believed. In discussing his meetings in that city, he said, "I decided not to perceive anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified".

With his mind's eye he did not see them even as he preached to them. He saw, among them, Jesus Christ and His crucified. I think this is a very effective way to proceed. He forgot all their weaknesses and inability, and saw sitting beside each one, or, rather IN each one the crucified Christ. This was why his preaching was with demonstration of spirit, and with power. He did not see them as they were within themselves, but as Christ the crucified and risen One, was able to make them.

He said to them in another passage, that Christ died for the sake of all. He did not see some on their way to heaven, and others bound for hell. Alas! hell fire forms the greatest part of the preaching of many preachers. In that case, the preacher is perceiving among them, not only Jesus Christ and Him crucified, but also Satan, with all his malignity. He sees the two in combat and in his mind Satan is the victor.

But Paul saw the triumph of Christ. He saw the One Who had conquered death, and knew that the time will come when death is abolished. It is impossible to see Christ and Him crucified---and nothing else---and not see that He made ample provision for the never-ending well-being of everybody.

Paul was happy in his preaching, for he understood, as he said in another passage, God "always gives us a triumph in Christ".

His exhortations to them was: "For Christ's sake he conciliated to God". He had the word of the conciliation.

He envisioned the goal---God All in all.

We could preach with greater joy, if we could see, not a congregation of people, but a congregation composed of "Jesus Christ and Him crucified".


Christ says that if those who are heavily loaded will come to them, He will give them rest. I take this invitation literally. It means what I would mean if I should say to a child, "That load is too heavy for you. Come to me, and I will make it so you can bear it". Too often we think of this as having only a "spiritual" meaning. Indeed, we spiritualize too much of the scripture. Life, or daily living, rather, is a literal thing. We become burdened with many things. It may be burdens of body, or burdens of mind. It may be financial burdens. It may be grief. It may be caused by the doings or attitude of others. We may be burdened for those we love.

How do we come to Christ? I do it by laying aside, temporarily, the work I am doing, or the thoughts I am having. I come to Him literally, to the extent that I go some place, sit down, stop trying to plan, stop thinking of whatever it is that burdens me, I make my mind as nearly blank as I can and ask Him for His help, and then I listen to Him talk to me in my spirit. I don't jump up in a minute and start on the grind. If it takes several minutes. If it requires an hour, I keep company with Him for an hour. I went to Him for something, and I do not leave until I get it.

You can't come to Christ in the sense of this text, while darting from one task to another, or when laboring at the same task while you snatch a second to say, "Lord, help me". There is nothing that cannot wait.

If you come to Him and still are in a fret about what is burdening you, you have come in vain. You must show Him the respect that is due Him. Your human mind is so often in a state of rebellion, that it is better if you can lay aside your own conscious mind, and let Him deal with you through your subconscious. He will communicate with you through this medium, and you will be relieved, depending on how completely you surrender yourself to Him.

And this not to be done just once. You have other burdens the next day. Come again and yield yourself and your thoughts to Him.

This makes you more efficient for your daily tasks and loads.

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