Joseph Parker – God’s Ministers

Quote for Today

God’s Ministers

John the Baptist

“The ministry of Christ is not a profession: ministers are not professional gentlemen; ministers of the right kind are called from eternity, and cannot help uttering what is in them, and they are not always aware of the reach of their own meaning. They pass through periods of madness, wondering what, and what manner of time the Spirit of God within them doth signify when it tells them of coming blue skies and summers that shall encircle the globe, and songs that shall make the welkin ring with infinite joy. Do not bind the poor solitary man down as if he  had invented the message, and must grammatically interpret it and bind it within parsing bounds, nor judge him by his after conduct; he is an instrument; through him God sends sounds mysterious, messages beneficent, gospels that are saving. He is not a professional gentleman. If any young men are coming into the ministry as a profession, God hinder them, build up a great granite wall in the face of them and starve them until they begin to repent and pray. We are either in the Kingdom of God or we are not in it, we cannot climb into it by ways of our own making and processes of our own invention: and if we are in it men will know by a subtle, mysterious, magnetic music and power that we have something to say not to be found on the decaying and fading pages of earthly wisdom.”
– Joseph Parker (Sermons on the Gospel of John)

Joseph Parker

Quote for Today

Joseph Parker
Commenting On
John the Baptist

“Look at John; see how the great men crowd around him; hear what temptation they suggest to him. It had never occurred to John himself, in all probability; that was Elias, that he was “that prophet”, that he was some great one. So the suggestion comes to him with all the force of a subtle temptation. What does he answer? He says, “I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord.” That was his answer: “What did he say of himself? “I am a voice.” What did he say of his ministry? “I am sent to prepare the way of the Lord in the attention and the affections of the world.” Thus, he who had offered to him by a very subtle temptation a brilliant crown and a high throne said, “No; I am but a voice; I am not the expected One, clearly understand my ministry and function in life; I am the herald, not the King: I blow the blast of the trumpet and he himself will be here presently.” That is just what every Christian has to do; to go before, to proclaim the Lord, to call men to preparedness, to awaken their attention, to tell them to be ready: for the Bridegroom cometh, and then to stand out of the way, as those who have indeed done a humble, yet a most useful work, in the world. But I repeat, he who knows his strength as John knew it will be strong, as no man can be who imagines himself to have a power with which God never invested him. A stern, solemn, grand man was John.”
– Joseph Parker

Quote for Today

Quote for Today

joseph parker

“Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field. He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels”
Matthew 13:36-39

“From that exposition we learn–1. That all good men are placed on the earth by the Son of man (“the good seed are the children of the kingdom”). Good men come from the good Man: there is  no germ of goodness, no hint or promise of good harvest that may not be traced directly to Jesus Christ. This fact is of great value as illustrative of His Divinity. Nothing bad comes from Him: all good springs from His undefiled, His essentially holy soul.  2. They are so placed as not to be beyond evil association. They stand side by side with “the children of the wicked one.” Proximity does not involve identity. Good men and bad men grow, so to speak, on the same earth, yet there is a difference of nature which cannot be mistaken. Time can never make the tares wheat, nor can time ever make the wheat tares. Time moulds the blossom into fruit, but time can never bring figs out of thistles. The difference between good men and bad men is not a difference of position, a difference of circumstance, or a difference of opportunities, but a difference of nature.”
– Joseph Parker

“Little children, let no man deceive you:
he that doeth righteousness is righteous,
even as he is righteous”
1 John 3:7
(Scripture added apart from Quote)

Quote for Today – Joseph Parker

Quote for Today

“The man whose little sermon is ‘repent’ sets himself against his age, and will for the time being be battered mercilessly by the age whose moral tone he challenges. There is but one end for such a man—‘off with his head!’ You had better not try to preach repentance until you have pledged your head to heaven”
– Joseph Parker

Quote for Today – Joseph Parker

Quote for Today

“The true worker puts the quality of his life into all his service; the painter paints with his soul; the preacher preaches with his soul; if the soul is not interested in the work, the work will crumble away, leaving no memorial.”
– Joseph Parker

Quote for Today – The Watchman – Joseph Parker

Quote for Today

“Go, set a watchman,
let him declare what he seeth.”
Isaiah 21:6

“In vision the prophet is placed upon a lofty pile, and from that eminence he looks abroad upon the whole field of human action, and reports what passes under his own eyesight. A watchman is not a warrior. We must always notice the distribution of functions in spiritual and social life. Though the watchman is not a warrior, yet the warrior would be weaker did he lack the guidance of the watcher’s eyes. The watcher draws no sword, yet to him may the victory in no small degree be due. We need in the Church quiet, observant, contemplative men. Yet there must be a limit even to a watchman’s silence. The lifting of a finger may be enough in some instances, or the holding forth of an appointed signal. In other cases there must be a loud crying out, so that men may know that danger is imminent. The circumstances of each case will determine the watchman’s duty. The unfaithful watchman is a murderer. This doctrine applies to preachers, teachers, statesmen, patriots, and to all persons susceptible of deep conviction and charged with high responsibilities. Woe to the world when the watchmen are asleep or are selfishly silent.”

The People’s Bible by Joseph Parker

Quote for Today – Joseph Parker

Quote for Today

Joseph Parker

Notes on the Scripture – John 16:7

“Nevertheless I tell you the truth;
It is expedient for you that I go away…”
John 16:7

“For example, here is a mother who is teaching her little child to walk. You know what a pleasure it is to see a little creature taking its first walk from one chair to another! I do not think I shall ever forget the first time I taught a little child to walk, and the joy I had in seeing the little toddling creature manage to go three steps without my help. There came to me a sense of triumph, a sense of something done. Well, here is a mother teaching her child to walk from one chair to another, and she begins by holding the child’s waist gently with both hands, and as the little thing steadies itself, and seems to have found its feet, she just takes away her hands little by little. Why does she take away her hands? Does she say, “I am tired; I do not like this posture of embracing thee, or of holding thee”? No, but she says in effect, “It is expedient for thee, my little child, that I take away this motherly support; thou must learn to walk by thyself;” and so the hands go away, not because the mother is weary, but because the child must be taught, sooner or later, self-reliance.”
Joseph Parker – The People’s Bible

Quote for the Day – Joseph Parker

Quote for Today

Joseph Parker

Commenting on the Scripture: Colossians 2:1

“For I would that ye knew what great conflict
I have for you, and for them at Laodicea,
and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh”
Colossians 2:1

“Why should Paul the Apostle enter into any “conflict” about people or concerning people whom he had never seen? It is to be remembered that the Apostle Paul is writing to persons who had never seen him in the flesh, whom he had never seen, and with whom he had only opened indirect communication by a fellow-labourer. Yet he says he has a “great conflict” for the Colossians and the Laodiceans and the dwellers in Hierapolis. Why this conflict? Why not let the people alone? Why not be concerned simply for those who are round about you? What is this passion in the sanctified heart that will go out to the ends of the earth, clothed in charity, burning with Christly ardour? If there be any persons who are strangers to this passion they cannot enter into the music of the Apostle’s Epistle to the Colossians. They may call themselves practical people, they may find refuge in narrow maxims, such as, “Charity begins at home.” Christianity knows nothing about such maxims. Christianity takes in all time, all space, all human nature; Christianity is not willing to sit down to the feast so long as there is one vacant chair at the banqueting table: Christianity never ceased to say, “Yet there is room”; specially is there room for those who least think of it, or who least suspect their fitness to occupy it. There is no room for the self-contented, the pharisaical; there is always more room for the broken-hearted, the self-renouncing, the Christ-seeking soul. Paul lived in conflict: on the other hand, we are amongst those who avoid everything like controversy, friction, and sharp, mutual confrontage. We love quietness. Yet we do not know what quietness is; we think that quietness is indifference, carelessness, indisposition to concern oneself about anybody’s interests. That is not quietness, that is more nearly an approach to death: peace is not indifference, it is the last result of the operation of ten thousand conflicting forces. We are only at peace after we have been at war, and after we have accepted the music of the will of God.”
Joseph Parker

Brendan Jaster replied to this:

“The last sentence in that quote made me think, we can “accept the music of the will of God,” or we can face the music, as the saying goes. It is going to be one or the other.”

Brian Troxel